What mechanism links climate change and social change? Palaeoanthropological analysis of human remains suggests that abrupt climate change is linked to societal restructuring, but it has been challenging to reliably identify the exact mechanisms underlying this relationship. Here we identify one potential mechanism that can link climate to behavior change, and underpins many of the reported findings on social restructuring. Specifically, we show that daily weather is linked to human planning behavior, and this effect is moderated by climate. Our results demonstrate that as weather gets colder, humans increase their planning in cold regions and decrease planning in warm regions. Since planning has previously been linked to group efficiency, cooperation, and societal organization, our work suggests planning is one mechanism that can link climate change to societal restructuring.