How I Use My Bullet Journal

For someone that has a weird joy for stationery, I always found myself using apps like Evernote more than a planner to organize my life. I came to terms with the fact that as much as I love a good planner or notebook, 90% of the times the reason I buy them is… let’s be honest, because of their illustrated pattern covers and not as much because of the layouts they offer. Still… I was feeling the need to have a break from the intense usage of screens. I needed something more tangible, a notebook that I could personalize it more in-depth so I started bullet journaling, and let me tell you that I’m now hooked and I can not see myself not using it.

I think at this point everyone is already familiar with this new journaling concept and scrolled at least once on the #bujo Instagram feed. But for those who don’t, bullet journal is a system for writing down all the things you want to remember in just one notebook. Things you want or need to do, or already done, your thoughts and ideas from every aspect of your life (work, home, hobbies, health, etc.) You can use any notebook you like, but usually the dotted ones are more customizable. Instead of using full sentences you break down your information using short words/phrases and mark them with different symbols. You should use dates, page numbers, titles, topics/categories and an Index to categorize your information so you’ll be able to find it later. Pretty straightforward, right? but you might be wondering… WHY BOTHER? Well, yeah… it looks time-consuming and a little bit complicated but let me tell you why you benefit using one.

Bullet Journaling is good for…

  • Keeping my life together, more organized and mindful of my time
  • Setting goals for different periods during my year
  • Keep tracking all my million To-Do lists
  • Planning strategically different work projects
  • Be more focus and productive in small tasks
  • See improvements analyzing past records
  • Tracking habits to understand what makes me happy and healthy or unhappy and unhealthy

My favorite pen to use is a 0.38 Gel Black Ink from Muji

“The way to get started is to quit talking and begin doing”

Walt Disney

Three tips to use a hassle-free bullet journal

  1. Keep it simple. I know it can be quite overwhelming with all the amazing possibilities, and it can be tempting to go CRAZY with complicated and colorful layouts. BUT, In my opinion keeping a bullet journal with a more minimalist aesthetic saves you not just time but more likely it will make you keep the habit of doing it.
  2. Do some planning. I hate wasting pages with untested layouts, it actually gives me a bit of anxiety flicking through the journal and see random spreads that I end up not using. Why not use a couple of sheets of scrap paper and write down the spreads you think it makes more sense showing up first. Try visioning the content you think you’ll be using for each page as well.
  3. Be flexible. Is important to not overthink, it’s easy to feel like you need to make all the decisions at the beginning but honestly, is all about flexibility. Some months I see that specifics spreads/layouts didn’t work quite well so I don’t repeat them the next month.

Since becoming a freelance I have periods of time that I feel quite overwhelmed with all the things I need to do, especially admin stuff. Somehow the bullet journal helps me stay mindful of my time, and gives me this idea that I have a “PLAN” or something to pull me back on track during those days that I especially suffer from ‘Shiny Object Syndrome’ you know. I recently started to use a fresh new bullet journal… pure BLISS, so I thought it could be interesting to show you some of my spreads/layouts and how I organize them.

My yearly, monthly and daily spreads

  • Index
    To quickly find topics and their page numbers
  • Year at a glance 2018/2019
  • Yearly Title
  • Future Log
    To see in one place all the events, goals and things to do
  • Birthdays
  • Yearly Goals
    Both for work and general life
  • Reading List
    With a chapter progress 
  • Clients
  • Yearly Blog Planner
  • Monthly Title
  • Monthly Calendar
  • Monthly Log
    The main goals, events, and tasks for the month 
  • Favorites Of The Month
  • Habit Trackers
    To keep track of my daily activities and habits
  • Monthly Blog Post Planner
  • Social Media
    To help me organize my uploads 
  • Workouts
    To plan my daily/weekly exercises and gym classes

  • Daily Log
    Using the ‘Pomodoro’ technique to be even more productive

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