We’re fast approaching the end of the year and this month I’ve been Bullet Journaling for 6 whole months! To top that, I’ve just finished and fully filled my first notebook! Considering all of that, I figured now would be the perfect time to sit down and think about what 6 months of Bullet Journaling has taught me!
I have throughly enjoyed bullet journaling and do feel as if I am more productive and certainly more reliable and accountable to tasks that are given to me. I love the flexibility of it and the amazing community and supportive people who love the method just as much as I do.
So without further ado, here’s what I’ve learnt!
1 | Don’t Overtask Myself
When I first started bullet journaling, I just added task after task onto my daily pages – of course I struggled with this and soon enough, tasks got forgotten about and left behind!
It then struck me that the beauty of the method was that I could separate this huge list into a monthly to do list and a daily to do list. This meant I wasn’t giving myself a months worth of tasks to try and complete in one day! All I have to do is just take a few tasks of the monthly list everyday and that way I’m slowly working through that bigger list. I’m also not stressing myself out and it give me a place to put a ‘master’ to do list!
2| Plan Effectively
As an overall method, bullet journaling has taught me how to plan effectively and in a way which suits my lifestyle. I have come to terms with the fact that I need my bullet journal, my phone calendar and the reminders app to make sure I don’t miss a beat. It may seem like a lot to have to do to plan, but it’s what works and I don’t mind putting in the extra work if it gives me an easier life in the long run!
I now know that at the start of a month I need to do a monthly check of all the things coming up. I need to write them down and get them on paper, and I need to understand my limits! By using all of these little tidbits of advice, I can plan my month both with events and tasks to maximise my time.
3 | No One Right Way
One thing you’ll gather from the community is that there are plenty of different spread layouts and designs. Some use cursive headers, other use weather icons whilst people like myself just use pencils (big baby!). I tried a few different layouts when I got started, and it became clear that the bigger time consuming layouts weren’t right for me as I spent more time drawing them out than I did using them!
I set up my bullet journal with a simple yet effective design which allows me to keep a clear overview of both my personal and my work tasks whilst letting me track habits but get creative at other times.
Now just because this is different to what other people do, it doesn’t make it wrong! The community will tell you that its all about what works for you. Never be deterred just because your layouts don’t look like someone else’s. Don’t try to fix what isn’t broken!
4 | Help & Advice
One of the most important things I’ve learnt in these 6 months of bullet journaling is that there is a VERY supportive and kind community out there. They’re on Instagram, Pinterest, Facebook & Google+ (and probably more!) and they are truly wonderful.
If I’m ever in a tiz about what to do now or if something goes wrong and I can’t figure out what to do, these people are the people I go to. They’ll give you 101 ideas and solutions to your problem within the space of 24 hours. It’s the wonder of having a world wide community!
I would honestly recommend that any newbie must must must start by joining these groups. Not only do you feel like you’re with your ‘kind of people’ they’ll help you get right into it!
5 | Less Stressful Life
Because everything I need to do or plan for is written in my notebook, I have less clutter in my mind and bothering me. I still worry about things like ‘Damn, I must send that card for someones birthday.’ but it doesn’t bother me as much as it did before.
Just being able to get it all out on paper and see it all written down gives me the little bit of breathing room I need to be able to concentrate enough to get the tasks done. To give credit where credit is due, I do find a brain sweep (can’t stand ‘dump’) really helps with this too, but I brain dump into my bullet journal, so really they go hand in hand!
6 | Pen and Paper Always Wins
Last but by no means least, is pen and paper always wins! I mentioned that I do use some electronic methods to plan but I always end up repeating myself on paper too just because I know its better for my mind to have it written down.
If we’re going food shopping, the list is hand written so that I can really remember what we need to get. Brain sweeps get written on paper because thats the quickest, easiest and most effective way to do it. I just love the feeling I get from writing a note with a nice pen and some beautiful grid paper!
And thats it! I hope you enjoyed this little blog and it gave you some time to reflect on what you gain from bullet journaling.
This will be the last blog before Christmas so I really wish and hope you all have the most beautiful of Christmases and the happiest of New Years!
See you soon!