During February I experimented with weekly planning using the Goodnotes app. I normally habit track using pen and paper but decided to also try digital habit tracking too. Since I figure I’m going to be asked this question I’ve put together a comparison between digital habit tracking, and habit tracking on paper.
Digital Habit Tracking
See this post for a tutorial on how to import any PDF into Goodnotes. See this tutorial for instructions on resizing any printable for your digital planner.
There are so many ways to mark off tasks once complete. These are a few I considered:
- Digital icon stickers
- Colored circles
- Crossing off with pen
- Ticking with pen
- Scribbling with pen
Pros of digital habit trackers
- Convenient if you’re planning everything digitally – all in the one place and no need to go looking for the piece of paper
- Can use any color ‘pen’ you like
- Quicker to decorate
- Can use as many stickers as you like without running out
- Can reuse the same habit tracker printable again and again – no need for printing
- Can be more creative – download mandala’s, shapes etc. and start coloring in. No need to hand-draw or trace a printout
- Can re-order your planner e.g. if you decide you prefer to cluster all of your monthly habit trackers at the back, rather than with the monthly planning like some paper planners do
Cons of digital habit trackers
- Wears down the battery of your device
- You’re always on a device – not good to always be looking at a screen
- If it’s not printed out on paper and in front of you, you may forget to mark it off
Habit Tracking on Paper
Pros of paper habit trackers
- Can use a variety of tools – pens, highlighters, planner stickers
- If you’re already using a paper planner, then a paper habit tracker is also right there in front of you, no need to remember to turn on a device to mark off your habits
Cons of paper habit trackers
- Not all paper planners include a habit tracker. Sometimes there’ll be a blank monthly notes page or notes pages at the back that you can use, otherwise you need to carry a separate notebook, or tear the page out of a discbound notebook, or add the print out using washi tape etc.
- Pens, highlighters and the like tend to come in the same colors – you can’t pick any color like you can in a digital habit tracker
- More physical stickers to choose from, but if you use them to mark things off you’ll go through sheets quickly. If you’re not making your own that can get expensive
- If you’re bullet journaling and hand-drawing up a habit tracker that takes a long time
- Cannot re-use. Need to print a new copy each month (or week)
Which is better?
I used to be a strictly pen and paper person but for habit tracking, I’m liking both! I like the convenience of having paper right in front of me, but I also like the re-usability of digital planners.
More on habit tracking
- 15 habit tracker tips & ideas to try
- 12 Planner Layout Ideas for Monthly Habit Tracking in Your Bullet Journal
- 7 Planners that include a weekly habit tracker
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