So, What IS a Bullet Journal?
A bullet journal is a quick and easy way to log all your events, deadlines, reminders, practices, chores and literally anything else you want to remember! All you need is a notebook of your choice and a pen to drastically change your whole life. We’ll walk you through the setup and use of the bullet journal (complete with useful pictures and resources)–you’ll love this miracle journal by the end!
First thing you need is a journal–a spiral notebook, a composition book, a moleskin field journal, a few pieces of paper folded and stapled together…whatever you have on hand will work, but if you’d like to purchase a journal, you have a few options.
–Dot Paged Journals
You can head to Staples or Office Max (or hit Amazon) to pick up a specialty journal with dotted pages. What are dot pages? Take a look:
These are favorites of bullet journalling masters, but don’t feel obligated to splurge!
–Grid Paper Notebook
You can go with your classic grid (or graph) paper notebook, which helps if you’re going to add illustrations (and we recommend you do, as it makes it so fun.)
–Classic Wide or College Ruled
You just can’t go wrong with a classic.
When it comes to other tools, the sky’s the limit–writing utensils can vary from the standard ballpoint pen to felt-tip markers or fountain pens. Also, having colored pencils on hand for color-coding and a ruler for pinpoint precision isn’t a bad idea either!
You’ll want to go through and number all your pages from start to finish–even if your notebook has page numbers. It’ll make it easier for you to control your page order and blocking. Then, right in the front, write INDEX on your very first page. Your index will be where you keep track of everything. It’s your entire journal, condensed so you can find whatever you’re looking for…fast!
On the next two pages, you’ll put your future log–this is where you can store everything you expect for the next year. You can break it down by month like this:
Once you’ve got your future log set up, it’s time for your month-at-a-glance! This is a more in-depth look at what you need to do each month. We recommend only making the next month’s page at the end of each previous month…and to remember, it’s something you can add to the journal!
Your month-at-a-glance can be set up however you want, but we really like this option–it’s clear and organized and super fun with the cute illustrations:
The next pages are for your weekly spread. Every event, chore, shopping trip, deadline can go in here. What’s great about this, is that your tasks and events only need to be a few words. Like “Walk Dog”, “Wash Car”, “2:30 PM Practice” and so on. It’s also is where your bullet journal key comes into play. Here we have two examples:
–The “bullet” part of “bullet journal”! Every task is a bullet point, every cancelled or completed task is a bullet with an “X” over it, and a migrated task (we’ll get to that later” has a forward-facing arrow over the bullet, as you can see here…
–You can also use other symbols, too. It’s part of the amazing flexibility that makes bullet journalling so appealing! Check out this legend, which we like a whole lot!
How it Works:
Let’s take an average monday–you have to cook dinner for a neighbor, write a blog post, do a load of laundry, and pick up your son at 4:30 from soccer practice. You’d make a bullet for each of these:
- Walk Dog
- Blog Post
- Laundry (1 Load)
- Pickup James 4:30 @ Soccer Field
- Cook Dinner for Marjorie
After you’ve walked the dog, finished your laundry and picked up your son, your list would look like this:
X Walk Dog
X Pickup James 4:30 @ Soccer Field
But then let’s say you’ve run out of time–you have to cook for your neighbor and you never got to your blog post. That would mean that your post needs migrated to tomorrow–so on the Blog Post bullet, draw a-forward facing arrow and add it to the next day’s entry!
Check it out…
But the awesome doesn’t stop there–you can add all kinds of amazing modules– things like quote walls, series logs, books to read, music you love…write down whatever is on your mind! Your bullet journal is meant to be a flexible reflection of your crazy life…make it yours!