How I Finally Fell In Love With Bullet Journaling
I’m a stationary fanatic. I’m that person who will go to Staples just so I can stare at pens, notebooks, and planners. I have so many pens that I could probably get through an entire year before I’d actually NEED to buy a new pen. I love notepads. I love sticky notes. I love it ALL, but when I ask myself why I have so many supplies, I realize that they are a product of my failed attempts at consistent planning.
Every attempt I’ve made to keep a daily planner or journal going has failed miserably. I’ve tried different planners. Cute planners. Minimalistic planners. I’d stay at it for maybe 2 weeks at the most and then get all frustrated when I remembered months later that I’d forgotten all about planning.
I don’t remember exactly how I stumbled upon bullet journaling, but I do remember searching for new planning methods. Hundreds of YouTube videos later, I began my own bullet journal in July.
***As I’m typing this, I’m looking through my journal to see how it looked when I first began. I only planned 5 days in the planner in July! Kinda ridiculous…
I fell off of the planning habit pretty early on because I’d exhausted myself in trying to make my journal resemble what I’d seen online. I thought that I needed to fill it with different “collections” until I realized that they didn’t fit MY needs. I thought I needed all the artistry and decor. Since I’m not as artistically inclined as my favorite YouTubers, I gave up.
In September, my mind was craving some release from my cluttered thoughts, and I needed some sense of order. So, I ran back to my bullet journal. This time around, I went into journaling for the sole purpose of intentionally planning to be more practical in my approach.
THAT’S THE WHOLE PURPOSE OF BULLET JOURNALING!!!
A bullet journal doesn’t have to be a work of art; it DOES have to make sense to your needs. Since I re-dedicated myself to my commitment to take charge of my days, I have used my journal consistently for over a month now. The only empty dates are the 2 where I honestly had NOTHING to do aside from going to work. My journal is with me wherever I go. I’ve learned to use the flexible nature of bullet journaling to maximize its use for things like schedules for reading, expense tracking, brainstorming, and whatever notes I need to jot down at the time.
My days make more sense to me, and I don’t have the nagging feeling that I didn’t get things done, just a feeling of accomplishment and eagerness to do more the next day. Having visual proof of what I’ve accomplished actually drives me to plan even more. I now have my own little system that I’m using to keep myself on track with my productivity—I’ll share in another post—and I still switch things up if needed for the sake of my organization goals. All along I thought I needed a more strict structure—I’ve finally realized that intentional flexibility actually works best for me.