My introduction to Bullet Journalling

Now, before we start here... if this is your first time hearing about the Bullet Journal, this post is not where you should be. You should be here, on the Bullet Journal website by the man who created it - Ryder Carroll. Watch the video, and get your head around the rapid-journalling system. The Bullet Journal (or Bujo) is designed to keep you productive and organised, and the frills that come with it - the decorations, the prettiness, can come later. Understand the system before you get overwhelmed with Pinterest, Instagram, thousands of trackers and prettiness. First and foremost, you should want to use your bullet journal to keep you on track - it shouldn't add extra stress to your life.

I find that I use my Bullet Journal almost as a DIY system. I found that a lot of traditional planners didn't work for me, as my tasks differed from day-to-day. I tried heaps of systems. Kikki-K planners with my own inserts, Erin Condren, Midori Traveller's notebooks. The one that came the closest was the Hobonichi, with its day-to-day pages, weekly spreads and monthly spreads, but I found that the empty pages would give me anxiety. 

Then one day, I stumbled across the video by Ryder, and then I was 3 hours down the rabbit hole into bullet journalling. Draw my own spreads? What? Logs? Collections??

 

I took the plunge

I took the plunge

So, without further ado, I joined a few Bullet Journal Facebook groups and discovered the journal that everyone was using was the Leuchhoughewoterumm (Leuchtturm 1917, never can spell it) so I ordered one from Bookbinders Online and it arrived the next day. And then I was ready to start!

Start what again?

I suddenly was overwhelmed. What do I do? How do I begin this? I feel like it should have some fanfare. So I did a stupid doodle while I worked out my brain on how I was going to begin.

 

My Key on the left, and my stupid doodle on the right. I was thanking the future person who might find my journal if I had lost it and returned it to me.

My Key on the left, and my stupid doodle on the right. I was thanking the future person who might find my journal if I had lost it and returned it to me.

The Husband, being much more taken in by Ryder's original, got his LT and immediately did the exact thing that Ryder said, and he was happy and all setup. I decided to copy the original bullets (dots for tasks, x for completed, crossed out for scheduled, etc) and then I went to work on my Future Log. I wanted it fun, because I figured I would have to look a it all year.

 

My Future Log

My Future Log

I had already fallen down the rabbit hole of what not to do. Don't decorate. Learn to walk before you fly, all that stuff. But I couldn't help it. I wanted to be creative. I wanted to DRAW things. Half the reason I started the journal was that I wanted to draw for fun again (as an architect I spend all day doing much more boring sketches) so I wanted to do CUTE things. My husband looked over at me with a bemused expression as I coloured stars, and he had already finished with his setup.

 

My Collection Pages

My Collection Pages

Then I learnt about Collection Pages, which are fancy words for "lists in your journal" of "things you want to collect" whether that be movie shows, recipes, books, etc. I couldn't think of anything in particular that I really needed a collection of, so I just did shows to watch, movies to watch, books to read and games to play (all on the one spread). I figured if I needed a collection later, no big dealio, I could just use the index to find it. I thought that once I did my first journal, I would be able to work out what I would need as permanent front-of-book collections in the second one.

 

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i then went ahead and did a savings tracker, and then set up my July month (it is similar to my September setup, which you can see here). And Voila, I was done. And I managed to keep up with drawing spreads every week (I really looked forward to it) and crossing off my bullets. So far, I am loving it. I am loving being organised, and I am just finding I am forgetting so much less things, as I used to miss all of my events on Facebook, Google Calendar. I was becoming app-overwhelmed. The return to pen and paper has been a revelation for me.

Have you tried Bullet Journalling? What do you think?