Bullet Journals seem to be all the craze right now. Everywhere I look, it's all I see!
From basic agenda style, to habit tracking, goal planning all the way to study sheets, there is a BUJO for everyone!
The BEST part about it? .... YOU get to create it yourself!
If you are one of the bullet journalists than this is nothing new to you.
However, if you are like me, you're probably wondering - why on earth would I create my own agenda every single month when I could just buy one? The time put into making a journal is extensive, the money put into the supplies to make the journal is expensive, and this goes on and on forever more!
I used to think this way. I mean there has always been a part of me who was fascinated by the idea of owning such a personal and beautiful piece of office art, but I never had the time (or the patience) to sit down and commit. I would spend $20 and up on beautiful already-to-go agendas that I would use 3 out of 12 months in the year because it was just easier for me to write in my notebook along with everything else and I wasn't really finding the vibe with my store bought agendas that kept me inspired to using them -- of course this means my "To-Do" lists would get scrambled in amongst hundred of doodles and spontaneous goals I set for myself.
Then it hit me, this is EXACTLY what a bullet journal is for, is it not? for all of your notes to be stacked together in a book but in the most organized and fluid way for you to understand, all while keeping you on track with everyday life.
So, being the artsy, OCD driven hermit I am, I decided to put my creativity and my extensive amount of free time to good use and started my own Bullet Journal.
Now from what I gathered while surfing through endless Pinterest posts and Youtube videos, bullet journals are technically put together in exactly that: a bullet journal. This is a journal created with paper that has neither line or original grid format, instead it is a bullet grid format (I'm sorry if that's not the term, just the best way to describe it!). These types of journals (or the paper in general) is not cheap! I even tried searching for bullet grid paper to make my own journal from scratch - your girl was about to hand stitch a journal to save coin but that failed.
The pens I see used are quite pricey too and I wasn't going to commit to that type of purchase unless I knew this was for me.
Now, pens and markers in general leak through paper. So it was incredibly difficult for me to find a journal that prevented ink shadowing from the previous page. I don't know if the "Bullet Journal" is made to prevent such errors but I would believe so.
But for now, I resorted to the Dollar Store for my supplies! And I must say, after experimenting with dollar store material, you really don't NEED to spend hundreds of dollars on supplies to create a basic bullet journal. Now of course, the higher the product is in quality, the result will follow. But I'm going to share my first few pages with you below so you can see just what $6.00 got me!
So one of my biggest hesitations when starting my journal was the layout. There are standard pages applied to most or all journals from what I've seen, such as annual (or Future) calendars, monthly and weekly calendars. Habit trackers and other "wellness" trackers are other common pages included in bullet journals.
But HOW do you decide on what pages to include and what order should they go in??
Honestly, for this portion of my bullet journal journey, I referred to the wondrous world of Youtube. There are so amazing BUJO Youtubers that provide the necessary steps and assistance in setting up bullet journals.
*The youtuber that helped me from the beginning is @AmandaRachLee. Her step by step tutorials and her monthly set ups are AMAZING! She also uploads cute doodle inspiration videos that I am obsessed with so if you are interested in starting your own Bullet Journal, I highly recommend checking her out!
Before we go any further, I must note, if you are looking for the perfected fine line and crisp look of those you see online, I would recommend investing in your pens and markers for sure! Also consider the higher quality journals. Of course this goes against what I mentioned previously, but if you aren't too worried about the "quality" than an affordable, heavy page stock notebook and a fine tip black pen will work just fine.
I currently use a STUDIO sewn bound notebook with blank pages rather than lines or grids. I picked my notebook up from the Dollar store for $4.00!
It is virtually impossible for me to find bullet style journals anywhere! Even the Michael's in my area doesn't seem to carry , so I settled for next best. I find using standard grid or line paper just adds too much confusion and mess for my liking.
( I tried to find a link to this notebook but I don't believe it's available any longer).
For writing, I only have one pen at the moment, and its the Uni-Ball Eco pen, which I managed to pick up at the Dollar store for about $2.00, but you can easily pick this pen up in a bundle from Staples.
Just be sure to pick up a 0.3 or 0.5 mm for the best ink strokes with minimal bleeding!
My journal is FAR from finished, actually I don't even think I have the annual portion done let alone January ! (oops!) But I will share what I have so far and what order I placed everything in so you have a good idea!
*Make sure to keep scrolling for a visual presentation on my bullet journal!
- Key or Legend (you will use this for the agenda and your scheduling and can find so many references on Pinterest! )
- Future Log, or Year at a Glance. This is where a calendar for every month is listed, I used up two full spreads in order to leave space for any important dates or notes I may need to reference all at once. But you can also condense your future log onto one page.
- Annual Goal Tracker. This page is set up so differently for everyone! Depending on what your goals are or what you want to set for yourself determines on what you input on this page. I also used a full spread for my goal tracker (shown below), since this is my first year using a bullet journal I wanted to ensure I had enough space for all of my goals for 2019!
My goal tracker also includes a "Word of the Year", which is an amazing touch I learned from @AmandaRachLee. I think it's so important to have a Mantra for each year, especially for those days when you're feeling down or discouraged.
- Moon Phases & Lunar Calendar. This is something personal that I added for myself as the lunar calendar is also something I follow in my daily life! Plus it adds a little bit of magick to my journal. I included this entry in the annual portion of my journal as it covers the entire year, rather than just one month. These are decisions you will need to consider when looking to apply your own pages: is it more long term or short term?
- Brain Dump. I didn't include photos of my brain dump page as its just really simple to start and not much to it right now. But I also used a full spread and this is where I will post pretty much anything that comes to my mind, whether that be doodling, notes, ideas, the sky is the limit. *This actually is a cute quote I'll be adding as my Brain Dump page is outlined with clouds!
- Books Read in 2019. This is another typical page I find people include in their journals. I added mine to the annual portion as well and only used a half spread (shown below).
I left a few pages in my annual portion empty just in case there's anything else I decide to add in the future! This is something I recommend to fellow BUJO babies, because this is a learning experience and empty pages are nicer than clutter!
I don't have anything started for month of January, but what I plan to include are the following:
- Month at a glance
- Week at a glance
- Habit tracker
- Monthly Goals (This is a page where I can break my annual goals down into steps for each month, easier to focus on and yet another fantastic idea taken from @AmandaRachLee. What can I say, her ideas rock! )
- Dream Record
- Sleep Tracker
- Tarot Record (I keep a separate Tarot Read Journal for in depth readings but I want to add an overview for each month on my readings, also to help keep me on track as well!)
My Thoughts on Bullet Journals
Of course it's still too early to really have a full concept of what bullet journaling TRULY is. However, so far I actually love the creative process and cannot wait to put my journal to good use! Not to mention the amazing opportunities to create new themes each month!
Now, I have A LOT of free time right now. We just moved away from home, I'm not working, I don't have friends or family near by, so I spend most of my time at home, which means I have more than enough free time to spend working on my journal. If I were working full time or whatever the case may be, I don't know how much of my attention I could devote to my journal without feeling overwhelmed. But for now you can find me engulfed within the pages of my notebook!
My name is Taylor. I am a mindset and spiritual wellness coach helping others shift their mindset and break past their limiting beliefs in order to manifest success for a more fulfilling and high vibrational life.
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