The Ericksons

Bullet Journal


Bullet Journal

I’m doing double duty this month during the A to Z Blogging Challenge. Here at Heather Erickson Author/Writer/Speaker, I will share ways to increase your creativity. I’ll also be doing the challenge at Facing Cancer with Grace, where I will share posts that focus on caregiving. I hope you’ll visit me at both sites. While you’re here, sign up for my email list. Today’s post is B is for Bullet Journal.

Welcome my first video edition of

Heather Erickson Author/Writer/Speaker. 

You can also read more details in the traditional post, below the video.

 

The Bullet Journal (BuJo for short) is an analog system for the digital age it was created by Ryder Carroll, a digital product designer living in Brooklyn, NY.

Uses

Most people who love the Bullet Journal system use it as a combination planner and journal. It’s the perfect way to keep track of your life and your goals in one place. I’ve found the Bullet Journal to be indispensable is in planning my content. I have 2 websites with different posting schedules—plus an email list. On top of that, I have my writing schedule. Finding the time to do these things isn’t half as difficult as finding the ideas to keep the content flowing. For me, this is where the Bullet Journal comes in.  I’ll show you exactly what I mean in just a minute. First I want to talk about…

Which Journal to Use

The bullet journal system is used on a dotted (bulletted) journal. You can use any dotted journal that works with your style and needs. When I first decided to try the Bullet Journal System, I bought one of the least expensive journals I could find. It was from Minimalism Art and it was sold on Amazon for a very reasonable price. It was good enough to figure out that I love the system.

The Leuchtrurm 1917

Then I got a hold of a Leuchtturm Bullet Journal.  I can tell you that quality really does make a difference. Let me point out some of the things that the Leuchtturm Bullet Journal has going for it. The Leuchtrurm 1917 has 240 numbered pages. Most off-brand journals have fewer pages, so it’s important to pay attention to page count when you’re making your journal purchase. This Leuchtturm journal is 145×210 mm. The comparable journal is a bit smaller, meaning there’s less room to get creative. Speaking of getting creative, lets look at how to use the Bullet Journal System to plan out your content.

How to use the Bullet Journal for planning your content

The Bullet Journal system has 4 core modules that you’ll use.  Once you put them all together, you’ll wonder why you haven’t been doing it for years.

Future Log

The future log is a big picture overview of your monthly goals and projects. Some people also like to put birthdays here along with other big life events to plan for. Because I have 2 websites to plan for, I’ve given each month a page and divided it into 2 (half for each site). This is where I put the focus of my blogs for the month. For example, I know that April is going to be the month of the A to Z Blogging challenge, so I write that down there.

I’ve also included some big projects/goals.  In January, I did a digital detox. So, I got a lot of writing done, including completing my next book, Facing Cancer as a Parent. I wrote a lot of future posts, as well.

The Monthly Log

The Monthly Log is where you organize your month. You’ll take the things from the future log that corresponds to that month, as well as other goals and events that come up and organize it all right here. Notice the date, as well as the day.  I also have a sort of personal code to keep track of which website I’ll post to that day.

I had been putting some big daily goals here, but soon decided that the better place to deal with daily goals is in the Daily Log. SO let’s turn there…

Daily Log

The Daily log can be a place to write down what you plan to do. I like to do this the night before. It’s a great way to get everything laid out so you don’t lie awake thinking about it. This is something you do as you go. The flexibility of the Bullet Journal system means your planner can reflect your needs, as busy or as relaxed as your day is.

Notes

Some people need space to take a lot of notes. Examples for me are the pages I’ve dedicated to Guest Post Ideas and Videos. I’ve done a little guest posting in the past and I’m completely new to creating videos for my websites. So, I’ve written some ideas here. Another example of notes (and probably a better one since they are true notes rather than tasks) is a note I began on e-book formatting.

What about these symbols in the planner? Let’s look at them.

Key

The key is on the inside of the journal cover. This is another way the Leuchtturm Journal stands out. In my Minimalism Art journal, I had to create my own key. These are symbols that let you know where each item in your journal stands.

. Task

X Completed

>  Migrated (to next Monthly Log),

At the beginning of the 2nd  month, look back at the previous month for any undone tasks. Either strike thought irrelevant tasks with a line or migrate them.

<  Scheduled (to Future Log)

These are the things you want to get done but haven’t yet scheduled.You are saying, “This can wait until October.” Then you schedule it in the future log that’s designated for October.

–Note

O Event or Appointment

*Priority (That’s a tiny asterisk)

Index

The first few pages in your Bullet Journal will be dedicated to the index. Each page will be numbered. In my red, Minimalism Art journal, I needed to number them myself. The Leuchtturm journal came pre-numbered, and also has a beautiful set of lined index pages.

One last note on Style

You can use pen or pencil, one color or as many as you can find. Your style is your style. There are stencils available to use if you’re the kind of person who wants his or her artistic flair to shine. I’ve decided in my next Bullet Journal, I’m going to use 1 or 2 colors. What you choose to do is up to you. That’s the beauty of the bullet journal.

Where to find out more

BulletJournal.com

Before you leave, sign up for my email list to get a periodic email newsletter to encourage your creativity.

What are YOUR thoughts?

I’d love to hear in the comment section, below. I appreciate my readers as well as the writing community. To show that appreciation, I use Comment Luv. Just leave a comment below and your latest post will get a link next to it. Thank you!

About Heather Erickson

I am an author, writer, and speaker and homeschooling mom of 3. Since doctors diagnosed my husband, Dan with stage IV lung cancer in 2012, I’ve focused my writing and speaking on helping cancer patients and their families advocate for themselves and live life to the fullest, in spite of their illness. My goal is to help people face cancer with grace.

My books The Memory Maker’s Journal and Facing Cancer as a Friend: How to Support Someone Who Has Cancer, are available at Amazon.com.

I also blog about living with cancer at, Facing Cancer with Grace.

Have any questions or comments? I would love to hear from you! By commenting, you agree to the terms of my privacy policy.

22 comments on “Bullet Journal

Hi Heather,
I appreciate you talking about the bullet journal and, most especially, showing us how you use it. I’ve spent a fair bit of time on Pinterest looking at bullet journals but all I have ever felt is intimidated. My gosh, people do turn those things into little works of art! I prefer something that is more functional so I could certainly see myself using a Bujo as you use yours.

Wow. I am amazed. It would take me all day to fill it in! I am the most muddled person ever, and do get everything done; but one thing at a time! Liz http://www.poetryroundabout.com

Intriguing system. I have heard of bullet journaling, but never explained so well as you have. Maybe after A-Z I can give it a try.

Nice offering. It appears very flexible to needs. Sometimes, getting my digital stuff exactly as I want it is a pain!

Hi Karen. I really wanted my journal to be beautiful, but gave that dream up pretty quickly. I decided, “this is real life.” I think the practicality of it made the exchange worthwhile. I love having what I plan to blog and what I have posted all in one handy place. I’m glad I was able to take the intimidation out of the Bujo. I hope you find it a helpful tool.

Hi Liz, This is my Bujo after a few months, so I started with a blank page too. As you say, it is one thing at a time. You can do it!

Thank you, Antoinette. I hope you find it helpful. I started using it as an “experiment” of sorts. Now I love it. Gadgets are great, but there is something so comfortable about a notebook filled with your ideas.

Hi Jacqui, I do like the flexibility of it. It was a little bit out of my comfort zone at first because I am a bit of a perfectionist, and as you can see, my Bujo is far from perfect. I think it’s been good for me to pull out a bottle of white out and get my thoughts on paper rather than something digital.

I’m really interested in bullet journaling. I’ve started one but not done much with it yet, though I have been practising hand lettering and colourful doodles.

I’m a list maker so bullet journaling sounds like it would be right up my alley! Thanks for visiting my blog today!

Hi Tizzy, I have a feeling your bullet journal is going to be beautiful! They are great for practical purposes, but also can be a good creative outlet. Have a wonderful day!

Hi Lisa, It was fun thinking back to my own visit to Israel as I visited your site. Bethlehem was my favorite. We actually stayed there at Bethlehem Bible College. Give Bullet Journaling a try. I bet you’ll like it. Blessings!

What a great post! I’m always searching for new ways to organize my thoughts because I tend to get paralyzed when I’m overwhelmed.

I’ve often found myself going back and forth on keeping a physical planning journal vs a digital one (OneNote, Evernote, etc). I like the convenience of the online version, but I think I’m more productive with the physical one.

Thanks for sharing!

I’m trying to be much better this year about using a planner to keep myself organized–and keep track of how much time I spend on various projects. I’d not heard of the bullet journal until now. Thanks for the info!

I use the bullet journal system when I’m throwing together some ideas for blog posts etc. I have a notebook that works for me – not a specific journal (I’m a cheapskate!)

Leanne | http://www.crestingthehill.com.au
C for Consider Every Angle

I started my first bullet journal about a year ago, and started my brand new LT BuJo this January 🙂 I’m loving it! Before, I had post-its and notes all over the place, and now all my lists and notes are in one place… 🙂

The Multicolored Diary: Weird Things in Hungarian Folktales

Hi Kieron, I’m always trying digital planners/note-taking apps. I really started to fall in love with Evernote, but it became too complicated for me (I guess I need things really simple). I still clip to Evernote on occasion and I keep recipes in OneNote so I never love them, thanks to the cloud. Bujo is definitely the system I use for organizing my blog. Thanks for stopping by. 🙂

Hi Jenny, I haven’t gotten so organized as to keep track of time spent on projects. My husband has done that and it’s been very helpful to see where the efficiency could be picked up. I could see how the bullet journal could really help with that. Best wishes!

Hi Leanne, Anything that works is a good thing. I started with a notebook of grid paper. I switched for reasons of durability. I put my journal through a lot, so the bookbinding helps it last. I’m glad the system is working for you. It sounds like we use ours in similar ways. Have an awesome day!

Hi Tarkabarka. I’m so glad it’s working for you. It really is great to have everything in one place. And, it never runs out of batteries 🙂 Have a wonderful day!

I’ve not heard of a bullet journal before. I appreciated seeing how yours works for you. It’s got the wheels turning in my brain. I have a Passion Planner that I like, but I think you’ve given me some ideas on how to tweak it so I don’t lose track of all the things I need to do but never get onto the calendar.

Hi Nancy, I’ve heard great things about the Passion Planner. I’ve tried the Panda Planner and the Dragontree Dreambook, which are similar concepts. My perfectionism has always gotten in the way of being successful with them. I should utilize some of their great qualities in my Bullet Journal. It’s nice to have everything in one place. Have a blessed day!

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