I converted to Bujo-ism (THINK we can call it a religion?) back in April and I cannot preach highly enough about this much hyped about trend that has taken over my Instagram feed for the best part of a year now. If you don’t know what bullet journalling is then it’s Creator, Ryder Carroll describes it pretty well here…I just wanted to share with you my own bullet journal, my set up and the handy accessories and tools I use to help make my busy (often manic) work and personal life a little less disorganised and unbalanced. So, without further ado, let the sermon commence….
Now, I’m going to have to admit to the fact that I have fallen victim (slightly) to obsessing over the ‘prettiness’ over my bullet journal (aka ‘bujo’). Being a designer it’s in my blood to make EVERYTHING I take a pen or pencil to aesthetically pleasing, but it is important to remember that your bullet journal needn’t be pretty. So if you are thinking about starting one then DO trawl Pinterest and Instagram (I recommend watching Amanda Rachel Lee‘s video tutorials) for design ideas and layout inspiration, but DON’T not start one because you are worried yours won’t look nice as all the ones you see on social media. Bullet journalling is ultimately there to help you organise your life a bit better.
So, at the start of any month, I tend to do something like the above. We have the month as the title (in this case, November), its dates and if I feel like adding some, a few doodles or sketches. I was obviously feeling floral and fauna and so did some drawings using my black Tombow “Fudenosuke” soft brush pen which you can buy here – I used this pen to write a nice quote that I saw on a youtube video and a purple Crayola Supertip pen to add some colour. Felt tips aren’t just for kids…
Turning over the page we have my monthly overview. I write down a list of the goals I wish to achieve that month, I also have a social media tracker at the bottom left of page too. I used my Tombow brush pen as well as (what I call) my writing pen – it’s technical name is V5 Hi-Tecpoint pen – pretty sure it’s available in almost any supermarket but you can get it here. It’s worth noting here of course that the bullet journal I’m currently using is the Leauchtturm 1917 Classic Hardcover in black, I purchased mine here
Following on from my monthly overview we come to my ‘moments and achievements’ page and my ‘to-do’ lists, for both my work and personal life. I don’t keep a ‘dear diary’ type diary but I do like to record things that have happened on the page to the left, from funny things my nieces have said to life events such as getting keys to our new home. Also when something good happens, like achieving a business goal, running a faster time or completing a design/deadline I will make a note of that too. It’s nice to remember and reflect on life’s little and large moments.
On the right hand side is my ‘tasks’ page – effectively my to-do list for that month. It’s easier for me to keep my work and personal tasks separate, hence the page being divided into two columns.
This is the ‘brain dump’ page. Whenever I get an idea for anything, whether it’s a new design concept or inspiration for a DIY project, I write/stick it down here. If that particular idea needs more space then I’ll dedicate a few pages to that ‘idea’ and expand on it on those pages. This, in bullet journalling terms is called a ‘collection’.
Last but certainly not least, we have my weekly spread. I’ve experimented with various layouts in the past but this one works best for me. I like having the month’s dates at a glance and so always put that to the top left of the page. Referring back to my ‘tasks’ page I prioritise which ones I need to tackle that week and list them under my ‘Goals for the week’ heading. As always, my to-do list gets longer and longer and so for every task completed, 5 new tasks inevitably are added! I use the days of the week to jot down new tasks that arise as well as noting any meetings/appointments that I have.
So…now that you have seen what my typical monthly spread looks like…let me show you the accessories I use in conjunction with my bujo!
So, starting from the top left going clockwise we have one of my favourite pens which I mentioned at the beginning, the V5 Hi-Tecpoint. I use this pen for most of my writing (and sometimes for drawing) and I really like the way it glides over the paper, sounds silly but it is just really nice to use. It doesn’t bleed through either which gives it the big thumbs up from me. To the right we have my dragonfly note cards, or index cards. I like to have the dates of the month constantly on view and so at the start of each month, I jot down those dates onto the card and using washi tape I stick it front face down at start of my journal. See below for a visual explanation of this! Also – regarding washi tape, there are loads available and in a wide variety of colours and patterns – I love using washi tape by MT Masking Tape.
I have quite a few index cards to pick from – they are 11cm x 15cm and come in handy packs of 10. You can buy them on my website here and on my Etsy store. My journal has a pocket at the back so I use it to store a variety of index cards – super handy for when I’m needing to leave a memo for someone.
So, following on from that is my stag notepad. I have a few designs to pick from and you can view them all here – each are 15cm x 21cm (A5) in size and contain unruled sheets. I don’t always carry my notepad around with me but if I am going to be on a long train journey, or if I’m staying at my parents for the weekend then I’ll take one of my notepads with me. The paper is a nice, soft cartridge stock which is great for drawing on. Sometimes I’ll sketch something and leave it in the notepad, sometimes I’ll rip it out and stick in my journal if it’s part of bigger idea I’ve been developing.
Finally we come to my weekly planner. I came out with this product at the start of 2016 and it is definitely one of my most used products. I’m currently using my fox planner which you can buy here and on Etsy – they are 21cm x 29cm (A4) in size and come with 50 tear-off pages.
I usually map my week ahead on a Sunday evening and so once I’ve prioritised which tasks need seeing to first, I schedule those in the planner. I always leave a little room for flexibility as guaranteed, there is always one thing that crops up each day that requires my urgent attention!
Have you got any bullet journalling tips you’d like to share? If so drop me a message or comment below – I would love to hear!