Monday 31 July 2017

August 2017 Bullet Journal Set Up

I've been using the bullet journal system for four years now, but it's only been this year, as I've consciously written notes and ideas and tracked appointments that I've used it on a daily basis. And it's only through use that I've been able to find a weekly set up that works for me.
I use a composition notebook for my journal. It's a B6 size (approx. 7"x9.5" or 19cm x 24.5cm) I buy them from Officeworks at the start of each school year (and have a rather large stash of them tucked away.) B6 wasn't a common size when I first started 4 years ago, but there's a large range of hard cover notebooks in that size these days, although I still prefer to find some unused scrapbook paper (I've been known to cover with fabric as well) to decorate inside and out.

I'm starting a whole new book for August, so there's a couple of things that aren't quite the same as if the months followed one after another. Normally, the left side of this page will have the previous month's summary of events, and goals for the following month. On the right, I'll usually put a quote that inspires me, related to my word for the year (this year's word is GROWTH.)
I use a printable month calendar that I created a couple of years ago. In the column on the left, I make note of future dates that I need to remember, then fill out the calendar as it's needed. I've also tried using this for noting things I'm grateful for each day, and keeping track of each week's menu plan, but found it was becoming cluttered and difficult to read, as well as doubling up things I didn't really need in my bujo.
On the left is the monthly review that is usually opposite the quote page. These are my goals for each month for myself (usually the personal projects I'd like to work on), family (things like "kids cook one meal each week" or "family card night", etc.) and big blog priorities ("number of posts written" or "update old posts" etc.)

On the right I identify one smaller goal (or perhaps this could be an action step towards the monthly goal), usually from my blog list, and break it down using these questions. (Questions adapted from Marissa Roberts' money goal questions)

I've been using this layout for my daily & weekly pages since February after seeing it shared in a bullet journal group on Facebook and missing a couple of January appointments. I put any appointments for the week along the left hand side, then each day I write a to-do list (or sometimes when it feels like I've done nothing, I write a ta-da list.)

Each week I also draw up this page to writing out my daily review. Now, I'll be honest, almost every week only has 2/3 days filled out, and every one says "do better at filling this review out." I haven't found the time of day to fill it out yet, so I'm always forgetting.

I track the books I read each month, and the books I want to read, in the back pages of my journals, but for every other collection I just write it out where it occurs in my week. I've just added this "when did you last..." this month, because I was always forgetting when the dogs were wormed, or when Steve and Douglas need phone recharges. At the moment, that's the extent of the list.

I usually write an affirmation at the top of my goals page, then write it on the weekly/daily pages, so I'm reminded each time I see it. Being a new book, I'm creating a new collection to draw from, as well as adding some favourites from my previous collection.

Here's another example of a collection/task list. I use a cheap set of felt pens I bought from school late last year (that the kids aren't allowed to touch), and a regular ball point pen (because my favourite Sharpie fineliners ghost through the lighter paper) for writing.

Every Sunday night, once the kids are in bed, I take a couple of hours to set this up, and ponder the things I'd like to get done during the following week. Sometimes I get those things done, and sometimes I discover that something else is more important, or needs to be done first. But with it all written out, I can leave my brain free to keep track of other things.

Do you use a diary or journal?
Has it helped you feel less frazzled?



  1. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  2. I am not a journal-keeper, but I honestly find it fascinating to see how everyone else does it! One day when I decide to take the plunge, I'll have enough inspiration to make it perfect! #openslather #mummymondays

  3. I don't own a journal but I do have two calendars and a notebook that I use to keep track of book reviews, upcoming releases etc

  4. What a beautiful journal! It all looks so productive and efficient.

    SSG xxx

  5. I tend to brain dump into the notes app in my phone. Not particularly because I prefer digital, but usually because it's at hand.

  6. I have never really used a proper diary to keep track, just a calendar on the pantry. I bought a diary at the start of this year and I have used it every week and it has been invaluable! I don't know how I got by before. Thanks for sharing how you bullet journal, I like it's personal touch compared to the standard diary I have. Maybe this is something I will try, as I like to be creative x

  7. I used to use a diary for this type of planning and when I was both a consultant and working for Uni it was handy. Now it's just me and sometime hub I need to worry about so I tend to use my iPhone calendar and notes now. I do love paper and stationery though but will only buy art-paper quality for my mandalas now. I have become more interested there now. Thank you for linking up for #lifethisweek 29/52. Next week: Birth Order.

  8. Love it. I use composition notebooks all the time, they are cheap and the perfect size. Love yours, looks good.


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