One of the rites of passage when my sisters and I started seventh grade was getting our own planner. Our parents would take us down to the Franklin Quest store and let us pick out our own binder and pages. In addition to the standard kit, we would also get the student pack, which had special forms for tracking homework assignments and class schedules.
We would sit down and plan the week as a family each Sunday night. I learned the importance of daily planning by watching my parents set aside a few minutes early in the morning to review the day. They showed us how to see the day in the context of the week (and the week in context of the month, etc) and prepare not just for today but for the coming days, as well.
I don’t know how my sisters felt about it, but I absolutely loved it. Don’t get me wrong—I was still a teenager, and I would still procrastinate on homework, but the foundation they had laid allowed them to have different conversations than most parents probably do. “Can I go to the movies?” “Have you finished your A tasks for the day?” …and I knew they had me. And they knew it.
I used a Franklin planner from junior high until 2010, when the iPad was released. Now, my tools are digital (mostly). Yours probably are, too. But a prioritized daily task list is still one of the most powerful tools you have to get things done.
©2014 Colter Reed