Bullet journal (or Bujo) seems to have become a buzz word and has cropped up lots in conversation recently.
A few friends know that I do it and had asked how it works, so I thought I would share my experience so far...
I discovered bullet journaling about 18months ago, we came across the technique online and I was instantly hooked on the idea!
If you are a creative type like me your head will be buzzing with thoughts, ideas, plans, goals, targets etc but where do you put all this information when you want to relax, take a time out or even just get to sleep. I panic about forgetting important dates and (genius) ideas and I end up with scraps of paper, post it notes and a dozen notebooks all half full. The idea of having one place, one book and everything to hand really appeals to me as I'm trying to spin all these modern day plates.
The theory behind Bullet Journaling is very simple, a 'organisation system' on paper that you can customise to suit YOU.
My first bullet journal was a A5 Leuchtturm dotted notebook, which was fairly inexpensive and has become my NBFF. ANY notebook will actually do and can easily be adapted to work just as well, but as a stationary addict the truth is I wanted a new notebook, I love the dotted paper that is thick enough to take pen ink and the pages are already numbered (bonus!).
I went for A5 size so that I can carry the book around easily in my bag but my husband uses the A6 and we use an A4 as a home education journal which is great, all be it a little heavy (it stays in the house).
Here's what you need to get started?
Here's how I set my journal up
1 Create an INDEX page or 2 at the front (Leuchtturm do it for you)
This is where you will be able to reference page numbers with important topics/subjects and find your most important information fast in the future. Doesn't seem important now but it will later.
2 Create your FUTURE LOG (Monthly planner, important dates, birthdays etc)
3 Create your first MONTHLY LOG - only the next coming month! (Calendar, dates, pre-planned events, monthly focuses)
4 Create your first DAILY LOG
Now this is the place where you log simple daily tasks, appointments and chores as they crop up. If you don't use all the page you simply add the next day where you left off, very economical on paper and probably my favourite bit.
But this is where most people customise.
I am not content looking at the Monthly log and a few bullet points each day, I like to see a WEEK TO VIEW so this is where the fancy page layouts come in (if you like them).
My week to view has evolved over time. Day 1 I didn't know what I needed so I played around with layouts, ditched bits each week and kept the boxes, trackers that I liked adding more along the way. My advise is don't be precious. Let the pages change over the coming weeks tweaking until it becomes tailored to YOU.
5 DAILY LOG / Journal this is where you can write up to the minute daily notes and task list, maybe even gratitude journal.
And off you go....
You don't need to be an artist and create a masterpiece on every page, as Pinterest would have you believe, because this is your private book and no-one else is looking at it (unless you write a blog post about it)
The bit I love the most about this journaling technique is that if you are a purist, you do not plan your pages out ahead of time. The book becomes organic and the content grows as you need it, which is what makes this different to every other diary you've used! The book should be empty past your current day journaling, ready for the future to unfold. The pages are blank, how exciting!
- Keep it simple
- I always use PENCIL that way I can change my plans at any time without making a mess. (My favourite is a Paper Mate mechanical)
- Don't be precious or scared to do something wrong, there are NO RULES!
I also love some of the tracker layouts that you will see on Pinterest so I make room for these and other notes at the back of the book and work these back to front so as not to disturb my daily flow.
You could also try the 'Dutch Door' technique of folding a middle page in to create a half page tab which allows you to add even more info into each week or separate task lists, meal planners etc.
If you go for a Leuchtturm you could Pimp your notebook with a handy Pen Holder Loop.
So if you want to have a go, or maybe you are doing a version of this already but want to go back to basics and fine tune your techniques. Check out www.bulletjournal.com for the basic set up.
My advice would be stick to the basic theory first and then let the system grow into what you need organically. Stick to it for just 7 days to give it a chance because this could quite literally change your life (hooray!).
If you like journaling and would like to learn how to be more creative with your pages, how to doodle and sketch your thoughts and ideas using a diverse range of materials instead of just pen and pencil. See the 'Creative Journaling' class that Clare Bryan is running at Stitch Studio this year.
I do hope you enjoy Bullet Journaling as much as I do, if you have any questions or comments we would love to hear from you so please comment below.