2020 BDJ Power Planner Review

Ever since I was a kid, I’ve always loved journals and diaries.

I got my first personal laptop at a pretty young age for my time (12 years old, for anyone wondering) but I never got over my love for paper products. I already had a diary at 4 thanks to my mom and I continued using one until I entered uni. Admittedly, I don’t write as much now, but I still keep a journal where I can write all my thoughts and feelings down every now and then.

When I got into uni, I started using planners in addition to my yearly journal. Keeping a planner has always been an amazing way for me to organize my schedule, figure out where I am in my life plans, and work on my goals more efficiently and effectively.

My planner of choice was the Belle De Jour Power Planner from Viviamo! Inc. I’ve been using it for 5 years now, going on 6 soon. And finally, the 2020 version is here!

Should you get it? Let’s check out the 2020 BDJ Power Planner!

Disclaimer: I did not get paid or sponsored to do this review. All thoughts and opinions are mine and mine alone.

2020 BDJ Power Planner Review

liveloveran belle de jour planner

The BDJ Power Planner is just one of Viviamo’s multiple offerings, but it’s my favorite one to boot. It aims to help women reach their full potential and achieve their goals and aspirations for the year.

For 2020, the theme is “The Universe in Me”, which I think is pretty cool. Of course, different people would interpret it differenty

Aesthetics

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Side-by-side 2020 vs 2019

The 2020 BDJ Power Planner comes in four different designs: Classic, Leather, Discbound, and Limited Edition. The classic and limited edition ones have a matte laminated cover while the leather and discbound ones have a PU leather cover.

I honestly had a hard time choosing between the leather one and the limited edition one, since they both look pretty gorgeous. However, since I always get the leather one every year, I decided to just get the leather one again this year. No reason to break the trend!

But while I do love the smooth leather feel of this year’s BDJ power planner, I still prefer the velvet leather cover of last year. Here’s to hoping that the 2021 BDJ planner will have the same velvety feel!

I’m not really sure if the strap will hold up for the whole year.
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There’s also some warping happening, as you can see.

Functionality

Although Viviamo Inc also offers other planners, I found the BDJ power planner to be the most suitable for me. It has everything I could possibly need from my personal planner, from motivational quotes to to-do lists to weekly spreads.

The biggest problem for me is how light the print is for the entire planner. Sure, I love the monochrome look of 2020’s spread. Last year’s three-color spread was a bit too colorful for me, to be honest. However, I don’t like how light it is. In fact, it’s almost too washed out to be functional. You can barely even see the text.

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It’s not just the picture, believe me.
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You really have to look closely in order to read the text properly, which kinda sucks.
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Monthly feature. As someone who doesn’t have 20/20 vision, the text is almost unreadable.

Nevertheless, I’m happy they still kept the original format of the weekly spreads. I really enjoy filling out the #ThisWeekIWill, #BDJMakeItHappen, Personal Errands, ‘This Week’s List of’, and ‘This week I’m grateful for’ sections. Especially the latter since it helps me look back on my week and think about all the things that made me grateful. I think it’s an important habit to foster and I’m very glad that BDJ is promoting that.

Extras

Apart from all the essentials that come with most planners, the 2020 BDJ Power Planner also has a lot of other extras to offer to those who are interested.

First off is the Dream Board, where you can put all your motivational slogans, inspirational photos, anything that will make you want to work on your dreams and goals for the year.

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For 2020, my goals are…

Ikigai refers to your life’s purpose. Lucy Darman from SavvyTokyo defines it as “what gets you up every morning and keeps you going.” It’s a Japanese concept similar to the French’s raison d’etre, which literally translates to ‘reason to be’ – your reason for being. Knowing your Ikigai can help you tremendously living a fulfilled, satisfied life, all while giving back to the world around you in your own special way.

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What’s your Ikigai?

You also have a 2020 Checklist to which includes some cool new activities to get Bellas to venture out of their comfort zone. I especially love the Finance category since I think that’s something many of us should be more conscious about.

liveloveran belle de jour planner 2020 checklist
Of all the items on this list, I think I’m gonna have a problem with ditching milk and sugar.

You also have a full page dedicated to your daily schedule, and another full page dedicated to the things you’re grateful for. I don’t think I can use the schedule page since I don’t exactly have a set schedule for every day, but I’m definitely going to make full use of the gratitude grid, as I like to call it. Not to mention, since there are 12 boxes in this grid, I’m thinking of making it a monthly gratitude box, basically listing down all the things that made me grateful for the month.

liveloveran-belle-de-jour-planner-review schedule
What are you grateful for this year?

There’s also another page that serves as your free space, where you can write anything you want. This is followed by your Dear 2020 letter, inspiring you to welcome the new year with open arms and a ready heart.

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Dear 2020, bring it on!

Do you use menstrual trackers? I’ve been using a mobile app for about two years now, but before that, I always used BDJ’s included menstrual tracker in order to track which days I’m getting a visit from my monthly visitor. If you haven’t tried tracking yours yet, I suggest you start doing it as soon as possible. It makes life so much easier for many reasons.

liveloveran belle de jour power planner menstrual tracker
Unrelated but… period cramps are CERTAINLY the worst.

We all know that bills are an (unfortunate) reality of life, so it’s pretty nice that the BDJ planner comes with Bill Trackers. With this, you’ll know how much you’ll need exactly in order to pay all your bills for the month.

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Something to motivate you when you’re feeling burned out at work. πŸ˜‰

In addition to that, BDJ also has a Cash Flow Tracker to help you stay on top of your finances. You can set your target savings amount here and reward yourself with a small treat once you reach that goal.

liveloveran belle de jour planner cash flow tracker
Hope we all reach our financial goals for 2020!

Thoughts

Despite all the things I didn’t like about this year’s release, I have to say that this planner is still one of the best out there on the market right now.

In terms of choices, of course, there’s your storebought planner from bookstores. There’s also the annual planner from your favorite coffee shops. I personally always get SBC’s dream journal as my main journal for the year since it’s mostly blank. Even Viviamo! has other planners in its roster, like the Focus Journal, the EIP (Everything is Possible), and the Navi for travelers. (I know, I know. Someone who blogs about travel didn’t get a travel journal? THE SHAME!)

But if you want something more all-around, then the 2020 Belle de Jour Power Planner is an awesome planner for women of all ages. It’s got everything you need to power through 2020 – the perfect companion to a great year ahead.

21 comments

  1. I love starting the year with a new planner! This one looks great. I love the pretty design and all of the extras like the checklist and budget tracker. Not sure if the messaging really resonates with me but I do like the look.

    1. Omg, same! I’m always excited to use a new planner every year, haha. This brand makes really great planners, which is why I’ve stayed with them for so long!

  2. I’ve always been interested in getting a planner because I’ve heard great things about how it can help you stay organized and on task. This seems like it’d be a great first planner! Thanks for sharingπŸ’•

    1. It’s true! I can personally attest to that. If you’ve never tried using a planner before, I think 2020 is the perfect time to do so! πŸ™‚

  3. I love journaling – though I have been slacking in bullet journaling a bit!! I’ve kept a planner when I was a university student, if I didn’t my life would be in shambles haha. I love the quotes they have in the front, all so so motivational!

    The layout of the journal, I agree with you, does look a bit light/washed out? And the text is just really small as well wow wow, they have some work to do!

    I love the idea of a Dream Board, it’s perfect to keep all your motivational things in one place!

    1. Oooh, I used to do bits of bullet journaling when I was still studying in uni, but now that I’m already working I simply don’t have the time for it anymore. πŸ™ I can fully relate to that though, planners literally saved me during my uni years! πŸ™‚

      And yes! I’m actually part of this brand’s official FB group where planner owners can post their thoughts and opinions regarding the planners. There was this huge debate last month; a lot of people complained about the colors looking washed out and the font sizes being too small. Sadly, the brand owner responded that it was done on purpose because their market research apparently showed that more people wanted that. Can’t say I’m surprised that many didn’t like the way she answered the complaints. Oh well.

      Anyway, me too! It’s actually one of my favorite features! πŸ™‚

  4. I love the aesthetics of this journal, and the dream planner! I’m looking for a 2020 diary so this one is definetly in the running.

    1. It’s only $12 (and they have promos all the time too, I personally got mine for just roughly $7 since I ordered on launch day) so I say go for it if you like its style! πŸ™‚

  5. This planner looks great! I don’t usually go for things like this as I prefer something a little more plain that I can arrange for myself. I usually use a bullet journal for my blogging life and a general day to page diary which I split into to-do lists and ‘other’ to plan daily life. Stuff like this is great if you don’t want to have to think about this too much though x

    Sophie

    1. I have a separate notebook where I do something like that as well, but it’s not really all aesthetic like those bullet journals posted online, haha. I just use different colors, maybe a few stickers here and there, a little doodle here… and that’s about it. That’s also why I like keeping planners like this one too!

  6. There aren’t many things that I love more than cracking open a new planner, and I’m loving how this one looks! I might have to grab one myself! As a person who has failed miserably at trying to make a pretty bullet journal several times, I like that this planner incorporates the ideas of bullet journaling, while doing all the aesthetic work for the less artistic among us (aka me haha)

    1. Oh, I feel you! I love opening new planners / notebooks / diaries! There’s something about them that gets me all excited, haha. And yup, I could totally relate too. I love doing artistic stuff but I rarely have the time to do it consistently, which is why I always fail at bullet journaling! πŸ™

      Do try this planner out if you can get your hands on it; it’s only about $12!

  7. I LOVE planners and this one is stunning. I love pretty stationary and this has to be one of the prettiest planners I’ve ever seen. I’d really like to get it but I’m not sure that they sell it in the UK πŸ™ I agree that the colours within the planner are a bit too light but OMFG this planner is stunning

    1. Right?! I love their designs so much too! It’s actually my 6th planner from this brand, haha. But yeah, the colors this year are just a bit too washed out for my liking. No biggie though!

      Aww, that’s true, I’m not sure if they have international shipping either… πŸ™

  8. I love this planner! Starting the new planner each year is one of my favourite things – it always feels like a fresh start. I especially love how this one has so many different trackers too! X

    1. That’s very true! I love opening new planners, haha. And the trackers here are certainly very helpful. It’s the reason why I’ve been getting my planners from this company for 6 years now!

  9. I love the look of this planner but think I would struggle with the font. I’ve always had a small planner for my handbag but this one would be ideal for at home use.

    1. Same! I was honestly surprised when I saw it for the first time. The font looks really small and the colors too light. Oh, fun fact, this brand also has a mini planner for that very purpose!

    1. Oh my, I just checked and you’re right! It’s almost double the price here. πŸ™ I guess it costs money to get it ready for international shipping? I really don’t know.

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