I have been using a planner and decorating it since I was in high school, over 20 years ago. When I started doing this I was using it more as a scrapbook or memory keeper. At the time, none of my friends did this kind of thing. Fast forward and I am now one of a huge international community that decorates their planners. And now, through social media, we have all come together to share our designs, sell and/or purchase stickers, or just for friendship.
Since I started filming YouTube planner videos and opened this website I have made a conscientious effort to put myself out there on social media. None of the friends I have locally are planner people. Of course, everyone is nice and looks at my stickers, but it isn't the same! I decided that if I am going to make planner friends locally or otherwise I'm going to have to quit silently liking Instagram posts, spending hours watching Plan with Me videos on Youtube, and watching Facebook groups without commentary. So, here we are. I am so very happy I made the decision to put myself out there.
I have been a part of TheCoffeeMonsterzCo Facebook group for a long while. However, I was too shy to really say much. Embracing my new approach I have started making an effort to be more interactive and share more with the group. It is AMAZING!! The shop owner, Helen, is so sweet and takes time to comment on nearly every post made in the group. And the other members are kind, funny, and thoughtful! If you're new to planning and looking for a comfortable warm and non-judgmental group to join I strongly recommend joining us.
Through groups like TheCoffeeMonsterzCo I made my first planner friend, Beth. She is so generous and sweet. (Not to mention I LOOOOVE the way she decorates her planners!) I learned from her what a RAK is... Random Act of Kindness. It is not uncommon, within the community, to receive a surprise package in the mail with stickers and planner related goodies! I have been able to send out 3 RAKs in the past few months and it feels so good.
There are several other groups that I am a part of that are also warm and kind. In some ways, each group built around a specific sticker shop, seems to have its own personality. In the end, no matter what group(s) you choose to be a part of you will likely find a happy place with like-minded planner folks.
Instagram has been my regular home while I took some time away from Facebook. I enjoyed the simplicity of the setup versus that of Facebook, and it was a fresh new start. However, in my effort to make friends, I came to the realization that I needed to put myself out there more. So, I started using hashtags and set aside my anxiety and contacted some of my favorite YouTubers for advice. And you know what!? They answered and were truly nice and happy to talk. I have so many more friends following and those that I follow. My feed looks like planner Nirvana!
Social media is a great way for more introverted people to have a social life without the pressure an in-person meeting has. It allows for a level of anonymity that you control. If you prefer to just watch please take a moment to check out my YouTube channel and all those I subscribe to. It's a fantastic bunch of creative and charismatic people who love planning and stickers too.
I recently attended a planner meet up in my area. A meet up is where planner folks come together with their supplies to talk and socialize while they plan and decorate. I am an "extroverted introvert". What I mean by that is I am capable when necessary to be social, but I would much rather stay home in my comfort zone. I was so very nervous to attend this event. I had attended one a long while before with my daughter (she was 10 or 11 at the time). Everyone was welcoming and kind, but having the only kiddo along made it more difficult to be myself. So, this time I went solo.
The morning of the event I considered not attending. However, my other half was right: I had been looking forward to going all week. A long story short, I went and it was amazing. I met some of the most kind and fun women. Everyone was understanding of my anxiety about meeting people because many of them shared the same thing!
I was in a room with about a dozen women who were all as different as could be except we shared a love for planners, stickers, and decorating! After speaking to some of them I realized that they were, in some ways, as nervous as I was about meeting new people.
If you're looking to make friends in the planner community I strongly advise you put yourself out there. I think you will be pleasantly surprised by how welcoming everyone is! In any case, I'm always happy to make new friends so find me on social media and say hello!