I'm not going to get into how to bullet journal here if you don't know what this latest craze is check out bulletjournal.com to get started!
I'm a stationary FANATIC! When this first showed up on Facebook as a Buzzfeed post I was immediately intrigued. Basically, Bullet Journaling is a to-do list, a planner, and a journal.
I'm almost finished my first Bullet Journal and I've tried LOTS of different things. I'm going to share with you what worked for me and what didn't.
- Molskine® Classic Notebook / Hard Cover / Squared
- Papermate® Flair M / Assorted colours
I have my Bullet Journal key that I follow exactly how they explain but I also created my own colour coded key to differentiate personal, work, freelance, and website. It helps me to keep track of where I'm spending my time during the day.
Indexing is very important, It helps you find what you're looking for quickly and efficiently. I've tried 3 different ways to index my journal.
- Index at the Front: This is the bullet journal way. It resembles a chapter list in the front of a book (which I didn't realize until now, doesn't really exist except for in children's novels... Hmmmm)
- Hi-lighted Catalog Index: Much like something you would see in the Sears Wish Book that comes out at Christmas time. It lets you look at the side of the book while closed and see matching coloured pages.
- Tabs: This will always and forever be my indexing format, I don't care what anyone says but there is NOTHING like a tab. I got myself some plastic-like sturdy stick on tabs for mine and it's a dream. You'll find hat pretty washi tape and some card stock (if you want the tab to be sturdy) will work just fine.
Having ALMOST finished my first Bullet Journal I won't use the Index method suggested by the Bullet Journal website. I much prefer the tabs as it is SO much quicker.
This is pretty standard and necessary to all. It's a place where you can dump all your long term engagements and refer to later.
I sectioned off my pages into thirds one month per third and then I created mini "at-a-glance" calendars in each section.
Again, I found this not necessary for me personally. Looking a month in advance is enough for me.
When I first started I had so many collections that I wanted to fill the book with now they pretty much sit empty with a title at the top. My suggestion is take it slow and REALLY think of things you are going to need/use. Here are the collections that I found worked for me and that I use frequently.
- Financial Goals/Benchmarks: I set up financial goals such as trips, savings for my condo etc. then I set up bench marks and each square represents what you want it to $50, $100, $500 etc. Since I put money into my savings every pay day I update these pages bi-weekly.
- Debt Trackers: I have a debt tracker for my Visa as well as an Owed/Owing tracker these are also updated bi-weekly.
- Blog Ideas: Pretty self-explanatory but I always get these random blog post ideas and this is a place to put them and then I can judge later if it's a good idea to post or not. Updated as needed
- Social Media Tracker: I keep a social follow tracker for myself as well as my freelance clients. I update this at the end of every month.
- Freelance Clients: I keep a collection for each freelance client that includes to-do lists, deadlines, ideas, etc. This is updated as needed.
- Books to Read: I love books so this one is a great way to keep track of what I need to read. I even added a mini bar graph to fill in as I finish the book!
My sister and I travelled West this summer so I added collections for my packing list, places I want to stop along the drive, restaurants etc. My favourite was the map I drew, no purpose really but it looks pretty and it was a HIT on Instagram!
My monthly collections can involve calendars, trackers, to-do lists, etc. Having bankers for parents my financial business has always been a priority so that was something I added to mine. Here is what I've included:
- Calendar: To keep your events, birthdays, bill payments etc. organized for the month and a help when you're planning your week.
- To-do: Pretty self-explanatory but basically anything that needs to get done for the month that isn't significant enough to make it on to the Calendar.
- Monthly Habit Tracker: The monthly tracker might be my favourite part of having a bullet journal. The monthly tracker helps you keep track of your habits such as, drinking alcohol, reading a book, taking 10,000 steps, social media postings and basically anything else that is relevant in your life. It also looks really pretty at the end of the month.
- Monthly Budget: I split this page into two (to account for both paycheques I receive in a month) and record my bi-weekly payments.
- Monthly Expenses: Where I keep track of where my money is being spent, like a cheque register book.
I haven't actually started anything weekly but I've noticed a weekly "to-do" and it's definitely something I'm missing. Other weeklies I'm considering are shopping lists, spending tracker and blog post tracker.
Daily pages are SUPER fun! It's great to get creative in making your daily spread with fancy headers, doodles, washi tape, etc. Additional things that I have added is a box to record my meals for the day, a water tracker to make sure I'm hydrated and Page Flutter's 6-word writing challenge.