Book Review: Grace Not Perfection by Emily Ley


Grace Not Perfection by Emily Ley
Rating: 3/5

In the interest of full discloser, I was fully primed to love this book. I have used and reviewed Emily Ley’s planners for the past two years and have followed her business journey after hearing about her through Lara Casey. Let me just say this book did not disappoint.

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My new planner: Emily Ley Simplified Planner Review


Last Friday I shared my review of the 2015-16 Simplified Planner and today I’m talking about my new Simplified Planner for 2016-17!

Emily Ley offers several versions: an academic weekly, an academic daily, and a calendar year daily. She launched the academic versions a few weeks ago and the calendar year versions will launch in the fall.

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Back to School 2015: Planners & Bags


EmilyLey Simplified Planner

August is better than January when it comes to planners for several reasons —

  • You get a second start at the “new year”
  • The best planners start in August!

I’ve done reviews of a few of my favorite planners here. I’m currently using the Emily Ley Simplified Planner, but have used the Erin Condren Life Planner and the Lilly Pulitzer Academic Planner in the past.

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For Planning Purposes: Managing My Life

You may remember my previous organization post (here if you missed it) posted almost two years ago. While the bare bones of my system remain the same, the tools I use have changed drastically. I thought I would give you an update of my planning tools as well as a review of the products themselves.

EmilyLey Simplified Planner

I use a paper planner to keep track of major plans, birthdays, and anniversaries. I also track to dos that I plan far in advance on my paper planner. These include things like “buy father’s day card” that can be scheduled and have a finite due date. More on which planner I use later this week!

Weekly iCal

I use an online calendar to remind me of daily appointments, especially those that are work related. Since I use an iPad and a Macbook for work, I use iCal. I have notifications enabled so there is a helpful reminder that pops up on my computer 10 minutes before meetings, teaching sessions and other special events. I find that having a pop-up reminder works best for these scheduled meetings because it keeps me from having to stare at the clock and acts like an alarm!

post its

I manage my to do list in a variety of ways. First, I keep Post-It notes everywhere: stuck to my center console in the car, on my desk at work, behind my couch at home. I write anything that comes to mind on these Post-Its*. Once a day, I gather the Post-Its and sort through them. I put any daily to dos on a list clipped to my planner, add any events to my calendars (paper and electronic) and put other notes into my tickler file in Evernote.

Fantastical App

Occasionally I try to get fancy and use the Fantastical app on my Macbook and iPhone, however I find that day-to-day I prefer having a paper to do list.

*This is based off the GTD system. I highly recommend Dave Allen’s book if you are struggling to get a handle on you to do list.