You know that frustrated feeling you get when you keep putting effort into something that should be working… but just isn’t? That was me, for many, many years. I was frustrated with wasting money on pre-printed planners and office supplies that just didn’t-quite-work. No matter how pretty or well thought out the system was — I still wasn’t getting anything done or organized.
Mind you, it wasn’t from a lack of trying. I’ve been an office supply and planner junky forever (it seems). I’ve tried the highly regarded Franklin Covey planner, store-bought day planners, desk calendars, wall calendars, to-do lists on scraps of paper, fancy notebooks, online apps that automatically send reminders with dings and emails… etc. etc. etc. And organizing, as a whole, is actually a calming activity for me; I can organize a room or closet in my sleep! But I just seemed like a hot mess using electronic to-do lists and calendars. And many of the paper planner systems were missing something… I was constantly losing sticky notes & lists, missing appointments, and had stacks of paper and notebooks everywhere.
At one point, I even created my own Life-Binder. I used a 3-ring binder — complete with hand-made dividers, calendars, trackers, to-do lists, quotes and more! It was OK for about a month or so because I was able to create what I actually needed and wanted. It ended up on the shelf, because A). 8 x 10 paper is NOT portable, and B). everything had to be done on the computer, so changes were not always easy to make. (I also wasted a LOT of paper from pre-printing pages just to find out they didn’t work out the way I’d planned.)
How I Found Out about the Bullet Journal
The creativity in the planner community absolutely amazes and inspires me. The complexity of stickers, water color and drawings — it’s all so beautiful! But, I could easily see myself getting lost in the act of decorating and “prettying” my planner; rather than actually using it for getting organized and getting things done — which is the whole point. (After all, I already had
a box two boxes, filled with incomplete planners, journals, and notebooks.) Then one day, I read about the bullet journal system in the comments section of one of The Reset Girl’s YouTube videos. And when I first watched Ryder Carroll’s video, it was like everything I’d been searching for, and attempting to create myself, just blended together into one logical (yet creative) concept. In case you haven’t seen it, that video is right here:
How I started my first bullet Journal
Investing a lot of money into (yet another) notebook wasn’t an option, so first I just grabbed another old 3-ring binder with some lined paper inside and gave it a shot. Within a week or so, I graduated into a spiral bound notebook (to get the feel of using an actual notebook). After that, I was hooked — and started searching for the perfect notebook and pens. After searching online via blogs, Instagram and Pinterest; I decided on a Leuchtturm 1917 with a Faber-Castel Pitt Artist pen and have happily never looked back.
Why I’m Loving the Bullet Journal System
I love the Bullet Journal because I actually USE it! It’s as simple as that. I can create exactly what I want or need for that day. If I want to be creative and draw or doodle – that’s fine. If I want to be minimalistic with just lists in black & white – that’s okay too. If I want to actually journal something, I can. I can even skip a day (or an entire week) without the annoying “blank space”. I can just pick up where I left off with no consequence.
The fact that it’s analog helps too. I’ll admit it, I don’t like being on the computer/tablet/phone for very long. It hurts my eyes, weakens my posture and I get tired of typing. The Bullet Journal system has re-ignited my joy of long-form (cursive) handwriting. Ideas can surprisingly twist and change as you’re writing them out by hand, because you have to take the time to get it out right on paper – rather than just a quick typing session.
And that simple joy of physically crossing off a completed task… *sigh*
Tell me: What you think about the Bullet Journal?
If you’re probably thinking about starting your own bullet journal. My suggestion is to just do it! Worst case scenario: you’ve spent some money on a new notebook (that can be used for anything you want). Best case scenario — well — who knows where it could lead? (:
What are some of the questions you have about starting your own bullet journal? Or, if you have started one, what led you to this system? Let me know either via email or in the comments below.
Until next time, Stay Classy!
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