About 3 years ago I came across this concept of a Bullet Journal and have been obsessed ever since. I’m sure you’re asking, “What is a bullet journal?” and honestly, I don’t know that I have a “one size fits all” answer for you. That is what makes a Bullet Journal so awesome! It is literally the most versatile concept of organization that you can find.
The Bullet Journal, or Bujo for short, was created by Ryder Carroll. He has an entire book, called The Bullet Journal Method: Track the Past, Order the Present, Design the Future, available on Amazon. The basic concept of a Bujo is part planner, part diary, and part to do list but what a bullet journal is to each person varies a lot. Some people use a bullet journal like a basic yearly/monthly/daily planner. Others may use their bujo to keep track of their memories, almost like a scrapbook or diary. Some people may keep a bunch of lists in their bullet journal, like their grocery list and their medication list and a list of books they read that year. The beauty of a bullet journal is that it doesn’t even need to be just ONE of these things, it can be ALL of these things and more.
You only need two things to start a bullet journal:
- A notebook
- A writing utensil
That’s it! Two simple things that you probably already have laying around your house. Once you have those two things, the possibilities are endless. You can keep it simple or you can get more involved using different pens, stencils, washi tape and more, but that is entirely up to you.
So I have my notebook and my pen, what next?
Next, you start writing and creating. Now don’t get anxious about the writing or creating part of this. My first bujo was super basic, comprised of dates and to do lists and that was it! This bullet journal is completely yours and you can do whatever you want in it (which is often very daunting itself).
When I start a new journal, I always start with the same basic structure:
- Contents Page — shows the contents of your journal
- Future Log — shows an overview of the coming year
- Monthly Log — shows an overview of the coming month
- Weekly Log — shows an overview of the coming week
- Lists/trackers — books to read, tv shows to watch, pens I own, weight loss, cleaning schedule, mood tracker, habit tracker, savings tracker, spending tracker, etc.
This is just a basic list. Some people like to include a daily log as well. I’m usually too busy to keep a daily log, so I just stick to the weekly.
Below is a picture of my current contents page. Honestly, I am terrible at keeping this up to date. This is really the first bujo I’ve even had a contents page in. I prefer using tabs on my pages to get to where I need to go quickly.
After my contents page is my future log. The future log gives me a quick snapshot of what is going on in the coming year. It shows every holiday, birthday, and anniversary. You can keep this super simple and just list dates and events, or you can be super extra and draw presents for birthdays, hearts for anniversaries, and sketch an icon for each holiday if you want. I keep mine in the middle with some basic color coding. Below is a picture of my current Future Log.
Once I have those two pages completed, I throw a couple of lists/trackers next. These lists/trackers would be things I want to track the entire year. For example, I have a book tracker and a movie tracker. I am super good a keeping the book tracker updated because I don’t read many books, but the movie tracker is a mess… I honestly don’t think I’ve added more movies to it since February! Below is a picture of the two spreads in my journal. (to the right you can see my tab system as well).
Then, after you add any lists that you want (which can be placed anywhere in your journal, you decide) you can move on to your monthly logs, weekly logs, and daily logs. I like to change up my monthly and weekly logs to see what works best for me. Below you can see my current monthly log and my current weekly log. I will share other versions later.
What you see now is completely different than my initial bujo. I like to think myself as a minimalist, but with a little something extra. Not only does keeping a bullet journal help me keep track of things, it also serves as a creative outlet. Stay tuned for more bullet journal posts. I love keeping a bullet journal and love sharing ideas!