I’m pretty sure I have seen discussions about the best planners for therapists in every single counselor group I’m in over the last few weeks. Some of those discussions have been surprisingly heated. It would seem that there are two types of therapists: those that obsessively decorate and organize extravagant planners and those that live life off the calendar on their phone. I’ll admit that I bounce between the two extremes and am usually somewhere in the middle. I’m a moderate planner who wishes her datebook was full of stickers and goals sheets but would usually rather sleep than devote the necessary time. Still, I find that I am more at peace when my planner is at least organized and up-to-date so I went through all of the planners that fellow therapists said worked for them. In no particular order, here are the best planners for therapists.
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I love the look of this planner and how sturdy it is. I also really liked the way the goal sheets are broken down into personal, work, urgent and non-urgent. The one drawback is that there isn’t as much room for customization as some of the others on the list.
$55 and up
These planners are pricier than others but those who use them tend to love them. I really liked how customizable they are. You can choose your style, color scheme and the planning layout. I found that last one especially appealing because typical hourly formats feel constrictive to me.
$28.99 and up
The Planner Pad has a unique funnel approach. Each week has a space for all of the things you need to do, organized by into own categories. Then there is space for you to write tasks and priorities for each day, followed by your meetings and appointments. This seems like a great approach for those of use who juggle multiple roles and overwhelming to-do lists. One draw back is that these planners are as ascetically pleasing as the others and don’t allow as much space for creative expression.
$30 and up
The passion planner probably has the most devoted fans of any planner out there. It’s perfect if you want space to add creativity to your calendar and if you want to focus on long term goals and dreams while working to make them a reality. It includes special pages to
$32 and up
These planners were by far the most customizable of all that I reviewed. You were able to completely design your own cover and the layout inside as well as adding extra personalized sheets. This planner might be best for someone with experience using planners because all of the options might feel overwhelming otherwise.
These planners are bound in leather and you can have your name embossed on the cover. They do not have as many options for layouts but have several sizes and color options. I thought these planners were beautiful and professional looking.
This planner is less structured and doesn’t have traditional time slots built in for scheduling your day. However, it asks you to identify priorities and goals every day. Plus, it gives space for appointments and your to-do list. My favorite part of this planner is the daily space for things that you are not going to do. I didn’t find this in any other planners and thought it could be a great reminder to give myself grace when saying no or when making changes.
$31.99 for a 3 month planner
This is a planner / journal / goal achieving program. It is designed so that you will spend 30 minutes a day focusing on your daily tasks and 3 month goals. It might be really helpful for some practitioners but I worried whether the time commitment required was sustainable for me.
My favorite part of this planner is the way the priority sheets are designed. You are asked to choose priorities for the month, not only in business but in friendships, families, health, creativity and more. This seems to really align with goals to prioritize self-care and balance that are common for us as therapists.
This planner is designed by, and for, therapists so it includes several bonus features specific to mental health. For example, it has a list of ICD codes, worksheets for SMART goals and a space to record CEUs.
We heard from psychologists, counselors, social workers and other mental health professionals that these were the best planners for therapists. In the midst of our digital world, I love that so many people in our field are prioritizing quiet and beauty as they plan their days. If you know of another planner that belongs on this list let us know here or tell us about it in the comments. Make sure you’re also following The Therapist’s Bookshelf on Facebook and Instagram.
Many therapists enjoy recommending books to their clients to supplement the work they are doing together. We also use books to help ourselves grow as people and practitioners. Remember though that books are never a replacement for real human connection, for supervision and continuing education, or for therapy when it’s needed. If you find yourself needing a therapist, a great place to start is Psychology Today. If you are having thoughts of hurting yourself or someone else, please contact the National Suicide Prevention Hotline