3 min read

A sweet old-fashioned humble modern-day story

Me and Jo, we are your typical Aussie family; one mortgage, two jobs and three young kids. Add to this our regular activities, friendships and community groups, life is joyful, chaotic and full… very full!

The juggle is real. We stay organised from day to day with our multi-coloured Google calendars synced on our devices so not too much slips through the gaps.

But more big picture planning in the midst of busy lives takes more deliberate action.

It requires carving out time and space to plan, dream and scheme.

The definition of self-leadership is identifying and creating a deliberate future.

James Bryant, Lead Different

Serviette Time

Jo and I started a tradition a few years ago which we affectionately call “Serviette Time”. Over new year, we go to a cafe and steal two hours away from the children to map out our year. Sure, it was seemingly innocent at the time; two people, two coffees, one muffin, no pen or paper. We started talking and asked the waitress for a pen, then scribbled on the front and back of the serviette on our table, within an inch of its life!

On the front side of the naive serviette, we put the days of the week, split into times of the day and family members and then add all the expected regular weekly activities and movements for the coming year; work periods, school days, gym and sports activities, extra-curricular, date nights and time to rest.

2016 Week Plan

On the rear side, we put the twelve months of the year up the top and map out the known events and possibilities of the upcoming year. We entered significant birthdays, public holidays, work conferences, school terms and study periods. We could then visualise the key events and flow of the year and mark in where to take family holidays, overnight date nights and solo retreat time.

2016 Year Plan

It is easy enough to follow a calendar and very easy to default to the events but it took deliberate planning to factor in times of work and rest, for each other and for ourselves.

We recognised that to set and live a meaningful life, we needed to actively set up our rhythms so that our calendar did not dictate our lives.

2017 Year Plan

Serviette going digital

So that is all well and good, and we could have just stopped there… but there is one problem.

For any planning system to work, it must be visible and reviewed on a regular basis. A serviette is not the ideal wall planner to hang up and regularly gaze upon… and it is easily disposable.

We live by our Google calendars and have all our upcoming events and national holidays in there. So instead of mapping our year from scratch every January, I wanted to utilise the information already available to us and convert into something that was far more legible than an old serviette.

Enter Year Glance!

With thousands of motivational, self-help, self-care resources, and thousands of time-management and productivity resources, why oh why(!) has no-one implemented a real year calendar?! Why does Google Calendar show everything so beautifully but have no meaningful year view?

It was my mission to find a tool to do this. I searched and searched and searched. Trust me, I know how to Google well and there was virtually nothing that created a year view, a year planner, a wall planner digitally utilising a standard third party calendar.

So my mission then became to build it… and I did… and it basically worked but looked pretty dirty!

Year Glance 2017 old version

2018 Year Plan

Then we made it a little prettier.

Year Glance 2019 old version

With no promotion at all, people around the world started to find my humble little year planner tool. 100 people… then 200 people! How did they find it? How were they using it?

Realising that this was an important resource, I knew we needed to make the tool more accessible and useful so I got a great team to help me code it properly and make it integrate with more calendars and give it more customisation.

Year Glance 2020

So today we have folks worldwide logging in to Year Glance every day of the year; making deliberate plans, getting organised and reviewing their year.

And that my friends is a sweet old-fashioned humble modern-day story of Year Glance! What do you think our journey to today’s Year Glance? Please feel free to leave any comments and questions. Your insights truly mean a lot to us.

If you’re like us, highly organised, digital, and visual, why not give Year Glance a go? You can start your free 14-day trial with full customisation right here. And anytime you need help with Year Glance, you’re more than welcome to contact us and follow us on the socials. We’re always here for you!

Evan & the Year Glance teamĀ 

@yearglance