Monday , June 27 2022
Japanese planners/journal

5 Reasons Why Japanese Love Planners and Why You Should Too

Japanese planners are popular must-haves not only in Japan but abroad too. In Japan, there is a craze called “techo culture,” which is organising and documenting one’s life using a planner or techo.

Almost every Japanese owns a planner to manage their affairs. People use planners for various reasons from planning to journaling as well as documenting hobbies. Planners provide a window of a person’s life written on its pages. There is something therapeutic in writing down your goals and plans. The act of handwriting helps our memory and enables users to prioritise and reframe goals.

Despite the advent of mobile devices, Japanese are more accustomed to using pen and paper when it comes to writing plans, schedules, memos or to-do lists. Because of this love affair with paper, Japan is a haven of stationery items. Many Japanese people are looking for the best schedule planners that fit their lifestyle. Here are some reasons why Japanese people love their planners:

1. A sign of respect

It is a known fact that Japan values time and they care every minute of it. To be on time is a sign of respect. This is evident in Japanese everyday life. For instance, trains always arrive at the scheduled time and if the train arrived even a minute late, you’ll hear announcements from station staff apologising to passengers.

However, the Japanese’ obsession with time has a deeper meaning as it is the first step in building trust and reliability, which are important both in business and personal relationships. Meeting the deadlines is one way of showing your respect and commitment to the other party or task at hand. One of the effective ways of managing time is using a planner to list the things you need to do during the day.

2. Avoid inconveniencing others

Japanese people always try their best not to cause inconvenience to others. “Meiwaku” could mean trouble, annoyance, bothersome. Avoiding causing meiwaku to others is one way of showing your politeness like how people refrain from talking loud in public transport.

Also, plans on hanging out with someone or dates must be made in advance. Japanese people always assume that other people are busy and have plans. The Japanese believe that making plans and giving short notice is rude. Checking people’s availability in advance is one way to have good relationships with Japanese people.

Japanese people do not want to let other people down. Thus, planning the schedule in advance is crucial to Japanese people in order to make the plan perfect. In order for a project to go smoothly and will not cause inconvenience to anyone, careful planning and preparation are vital.

3. Outlet for creativity

Planners can spark motivation and creativity for some people. Planner enthusiasts treat planning and journaling as a hobby by drawing and adorning their planners with art and stickers. We all know that Japan is a haven of “kawaii” things – stickers, washi tapes, sticky notes – that you can put on your planner. Moreover, there is a growing trend of people sharing beautifully-constructed planners on Instagram.

4. Honoring thy words

Promises or yakusoku are a big deal in Japan. It is embodied in a nursery rhyme: 指切りげんまん、うそついたら針千本飲ます、指切った. (Pinky promise, if I lie, I will drink 1000 needles, and cut my pinky).

Japanese don’t take words lightly. Forgetting or being busy is never an excuse for breaking a promise, as many associates the behaviour with being a liar. Once a date and time are agreed upon, both parties will meet with little to no reminders. Thus, a calendar or a planner is important so you don’t forget.

5. Getting your life together

If there is one thing that the Japanese people are particularly good at is is that they are highly organized and they live their life by the book. While this can also be their weakness at times, being organized by planning their days ahead makes them more in control of their life. Planning is about setting your goals and outlining the tasks that lead to that those goals. With your goals and future plans written down, you will be motivated to strive toward those goals.
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Our very own Ikigai Notes is a planner that goes beyond reminding you of your schedule and to-do lists. It allows you to map out your goals and habits by deconstructing them in baby steps. Ikigai Notes enables you to plan on the different aspects of your life such as your self, work, and relationships. Moreover, it has a feature that helps you check your progress.

There’s no need to meticulously plan everything. A rough plan or an overview can go a long way, and it’s more than enough to help you become more efficient and live your best life.

About Kristin Dian Mariano

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