By Kara Mason

The Best Notepads for Being Your Best Self in 2021


Getting organized and staying focused is easy with a little help.

There’s a lot happening these days. 

It’s safe to say many of us are as busy as ever, so prioritizing ourselves isn’t always easy to do. Life can easily feel out of control and overwhelming. Between work and your personal life, creating the best version of yourself can feel like it actually takes a lot of dedication and effort. 

Luckily, a few good organizational tools can make the hustle and bustle a little simpler (and even enjoyable!). Perhaps the best way to make sure something has your full attention is to write it down.

Yes, notepads are game changers. Whatever you want to focus on in your life, there’s probably an Ink+Volt notepad for that. 

Decision-making? Yep. Team meetings? Got it! Running errands? Got that, too. 

Here are a few notepads that help you get through all of the not-so-fun parts of life, so you can be your best self. 

Decisions Pad

If you have a hard time making decisions, you’ve probably heard the advice that you should make a list of pros and cons. But even starting there can be overwhelming. After all, not all pros and cons are easy to compare.

The Decisions Pad makes weighing your tough choices much easier! With specific options to compare (like impact, values, and sacrifice), you can make an informed, well considered decision, and you won’t have to feel any more anguish than necessary. This pad takes away the big stressors by giving you a clear structure for reviewing all your options.

The process of filling out the pad often makes one option jump out at the winner, but barring that, the filled-out form will show you exactly how your choices stack up. Decision-making shouldn't feel mysterious!

For Me/For You

Successful teamwork depends on good communication, but delegating can get tricky sometimes. Avoid that awkwardness with the For Me/For You Pad, which helps you and your colleagues easily divvy up tasks.

The notepad is a great addition to any team or one-on-one meeting, especially when you’ve made up a list of to-dos. Each sheet tears down the middle -- one for me, one for you -- so it's perfectly clear whose tasks are whose. 

Better communication and direction will not only help you elevate yourself this year, it’ll help your colleagues, too. This notepad is smart and brings a layer of fun to the sometimes complex job of delegating.

Top 3 Today

They say good things come in threes, and the to-do list is no different! The Top 3 Notepad was built on this idea, too: simplicity, purpose, and success.  

Sure, you may have a lot on your plate, but narrowing down your to-do list to three things can give your productivity a major boost. Here’s why: You’ll automatically start prioritizing your tasks so that the most important things make it to your top three. 

"Having just three items to focus on throughout the day and week will help you stay centered and accomplish more, even on days when everything hits the fan,” says productivity expert  Chris Bailey in his book The Productivity Project

Ideally, these should be high effort tasks, he says. But your top three may vary depending on the day. 

Beyond work, this notepad works great for days off when you're running errands or as an affirmation guide. What are three things you want to meditate on today? What do you want to remind yourself of throughout the day? Write them here and stay focused all day.  

Errand Notepad

In her viral article on “millennial burnout” Anne Helen Petersen coined the phrase “errand paralysis.” It’s when even the simplest of tasks — like mailing a letter or returning a pair of pants that don’t fit — becomes so daunting that you just keep putting it off. Sound relatable?

Instead of rolling those tasks over to the next day or week or month, make a plan. The Errand Notepad gives enough structure that you’re sure to tie up all those loose ends in one trip. The pad helps you make a plan, a route, and a list of things to pick up or drop off, so you can plan an entire trip and be sure you aren’t forgetting anything or unnecessarily backtracking. 

This notepad will have your errand days running so smoothly you just might be inspired to get even more done tomorrow.

Reflection Pad

An important part of success is checking in on yourself, because, well, balance is key. It’s often all too easy to let one part of our life take over, and most of the time we don’t even realize it because we’re so preoccupied with whatever is taking up the most room.

The Reflection Pad aims to change that.  

This clever pad helps you rate and analyze all things vital for self-awareness. Joy, rest, spirit, and nutrition are just a few of the ways you can check in with yourself with this notepad and rank each area 1-5. This number-driven approach helps you take inventory of everything you’re probably trying to balance already and helps you identify where you need to shift your effort or work to get more of what you really want or need.

If you want to stay aligned this year, this notepad is for you. 

Today Overview Notepad

Finally, make sure you have a notepad in your arsenal that can keep you on track all day long. Having a hardcopy version of your day at a glance keeps everything in one place, and you won’t have the option of hitting ‘ignore’. Writing things down by hand has been proven to make you remember them and understand them better - so skip the digital calendar for your busy days and try this instead.

The Today Overview Notepad helps you keep track of all the major things: your schedule, deadlines, and tasks. This notepad even goes a step further with a hydration checkbox (because, really, who couldn’t use that?!)

This notepad does it all for the people who are busy and often need a refresher of what’s next in their day. Hourly timestamps help keep the day running smoothly while a to-do list helps you to prioritize as you go.

While the organization really sets this notepad apart from any other blank version, it’s the design that elevates it. Gold foil details and thick, luxurious paper makes marking off a task even better.