How to get the most out of your Simplified Planner

This post may contain affiliate links, which means that if you click on a link and make a purchase, I will receive a small commission. This is no extra cost to you, but it does enable my addiction to Target. Please see my full disclosure policy for details.

The 2020-2021 Simplified Planners are finally on sale! The Simplified Planner by Emily Ley is one of my all-time favorite products. I have used this planner for several years and felt that I needed to share a clear Simplified Planner Review so you can determine if this planner is the right fit for you!

I will admit that I have not always been the most organized person. As an enneagram 3, I do love goals and get a rush when checking something off a to do list – but I can get sidetracked easily if I add too much to my list.

And that scatter brained-ness usually leads to a double booking of dinner with my husband as well as a workout class with friends. Which is not great for the state of our marriage. 

Getting organized is something that I used to struggle with big time. I have so many things that I want to do and a limited time to do them, so being efficient is super important. I just couldn’t seem to find a system that worked well for me.

A few years ago I decided to try the Simplified Planner by Emily Ley to keep better track of my personal and work life and it has really changed everything for my scheduling.

I have found the planner whom my soul loves.

My decision to purchase the Simplified Planner was actually made because the covers were so cute. I heart pineapples (both in taste and in style) and the Gold Pineapple cover a few years ago won me over before I even looked at what was inside.

When I started using my Simplified Planner, I realized how much I was benefitting from the way it was set up. I have used both the daily and weekly versions and have done a full comparison as to what has worked best at different stages in my life.


The Simplified Planner is one of the best planners out there, in my opinion. I have used several popular brands of planners in my time, and none of them have worked as well for me.

I love that this planner just has the basics. When planners add too many features, I tend not to use everything, and they just take up space.

And when you have too much to check off in a planner, it because easy to get overwhelmed. Which means you stop using the planner and it just becomes a waste of money.

But the Simplified Planner is not about overwhelm. (as it so clearly states in the name SIMPLIFIED).

I mentioned earlier, but aside from all of the great features inside the planner, the outside cover is absolutely one of the highlights. I can’t tell you how many times I have been complimented on my adorable planner.

While the pineapple covers are always a favorite of mine, the floral covers have been absolutely gorgeous the past several years. And the joyous Happy Stripe cover is a classic Simplified Planner staple that is so perfect.

This past year, I actually went with the Dapper Desk version of the Simplified Planner, which is just a solid vegan leather cover for the weekly version of the planner.

They had a blush colored cover and I was obsessed. This is the first year that the Dapper Desk planners have been available for the academic year. If you like a sturdier planner, the Dapper Desk is a great option!

I have found that this planner is great for busy moms and moms who work. When I have had a weekly version, I have left it open on my desk at work to keep up with all of my to-do’s.

When I have used the daily version, I keep it in my purse to keep all of my appointments tracked and bring it to our weekly marriage meeting so my husband and I can visually see what our week will look like.

The Simplified Planner has taken me from a frazzled lady who wrote reminders on post it notes all over the place, to an organized, working mom who actually knows what her entire family has going on each week (and the ability to see that at a glance when she inevitably forgets if Bible Study is Tuesday or Wednesday night).

Below I am walking you through all of the features about the Simplified Planner that made it the right planner for me – and hopefully you too!



The Simplified Planner has a section specifically for To-Do’s. Other planners I have used have had a notes section, or just a space to write out your appointments. I love getting to write out my to-do list in my planner and I have even started writing it out in advance.

Sundays are typically my day to write out my to-dos for the week, which helps me better see how I need to allocate my time that week. If I don’t cross off all the items for one day, I just add them to the list for the next day. So my Friday list is usually way longer than originally planned. Progress, not perfection, am I right?

I use this section to create my perfect to-do list, which has been a gamechanger for my productivity each day.

By using this section, I have been able to get more done during my workday which means I have more time freed up to spend with my kids!

Simplified, Emily Ley, Simplified Planner


If you do meal planning or want to do meal planning, the Simplified Planner gets you. There is a large section in the daily version for notes of your choice. 

I use this notes section for meal planning . It is large enough that you can write down a short recipe, or other instructions (such as “Pick up dinner from XXXX Restaurant” which is written down in my planner a lot).

This has helped me get much better with my grocery purchases. I can make a list of meals for the week and order the ingredients via Instacart (my favorite way to grocery shop) and I am about 78%* less likely to buy things I don’t need (*numbers not found through an actual study).

You can use this notes section for other things as well. You can write down habits that you are tracking, an encouraging verse, or actually take notes during a meeting.

Customize that section however you need!

Get the most out of your Simplified Planner with these helpful tips and become more organized by using this Emily Ley product.


This is a planner. So obviously it has a section for keeping track of your appointments. What I think is great about the Simplified Planner is that you can look at your appointments and your to-do lists side by side.

I find this incredibly beneficial because I can take the open sections in my day and assign times for specific to-dos. I am way more likely to get something done if I have a designated time for it.


I love the monthly view in the Simplified Planner. I enjoy being able to see my month at a glance and be prepped for any upcoming trips or showers that I might need to plan for. I also love being able to look back at the monthly views and see what all I have done throughout the year.

My husband and I sit down at the beginning of each quarter and use the monthly view in my Simplified Planner to go over all of our pre-set plans and block off weekends to make sure we have time set aside to do all the family things we want to do.

I also use this monthly view to track when my kids reach special milestones (ex: first smile, first laugh) so that I can have all of that documented for reference when I finally start their baby books when they are in college (probably).

Get the most out of your Simplified Planner with these helpful tips and become more organized by using this Emily Ley product.
Simplified Planner Monthly View

Related Posts:

– How to Plan Your Most Productive Week Ever
The Best Desk Accessories

How will you get the most out of your planner?

Digital or paper. Simplified Planner or iPhone. Pick a method that works for you. I have found that having a written record of your appointments and to-do lists, make you much more likely to forget and more likely to accomplish your goals.

What is your system for keeping your head on straight? Did this Simplified Planner Review help you in your search for the perfect planner? I would love to hear how you get the most out of your Simplified Planner or about what planner you use in the comments below!

Similar Posts


  1. Ohhh I need this. I use a general notebook to jot everything down and then cant find it again! I love the different sections and how simple it is. I find the simpler a process is the easier it is to stay on track and organized.

  2. That sounds like my kind of planner! I tried a few before but they just didn’t gel with my way of doing it for some reason. I’ll have to look into these!

  3. I am a huge fan of planners and organization. I use different types of planners for different things. My important tasks I track with my todoist app. I love it so much. I do use a pocket planner for keeping track of bills but I tend to lean towards digital for business and social.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *