Bullet Journaling–Easy Organization + Time Management Trick

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Have your heard of “Bullet Journaling”? I hadn’t until recently, I watched a quick facebook video on it from Edie, and immediately thought–what a great concept! Then I thought, how has this not occurred to me before?  Hello… I like to make lists!

 

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So, I after this light bulb moment I thought it was worth writing about here. The concept of bullet journaling is so simple. You buy a notebook, journal or notepad and use it to keep all your lists/thoughts/brain dumps/goals/plans/ideas etc. all in one place…the thing that is life-changing is that you use the first page of the notebook as a table of contents. 

 

 

This basically turns a random book of lists into an organized one. One where you can find what you need, refer back to your ideas as frequently as you need to, and quite simply, put your hands on what you need when you need it. You can the Bullet Journal above that I started for 2017 (and shared on Instagram).

At the beginning of the year I bought a brand new notebook to fill with my loftier plans, goals and ideas for the year. It is like making new year’s resolutions but even better {sorry #6 is still top-secret!).  It was such a great exercise to sit down and list out things I wanted to accomplish {like our new healthy living newsletter, you can sign up to receive that HERE!}

 

 

I am sure some of you are thinking, but my phone does this in the Notes app! I know Evernote and other programs and Apps do this too, I just happen to like the pen to paper route–I am old fashioned like that–but feel free to modify this system however it works for you.

I started my new Bullet Journal listing my goals, writing down what I wanted to accomplish as far as health and exercise, starting a list of things I wanted to read {this way I could keep a running list in one location}, a business plan for my organizing business, and a list of February Things-To-Do. Interestingly enough, that was kind of a procrastination list–since I wrote this Jan 1st–that is a list of things I could put off but wanted to make sure I kept out there to accomplish.

 

 

This is just my initial jump into this system–there are so many ways you can bullet journal and no right or wrong way. I am always trying to dump ideas out of my brain to free it up for other things. I read once that Steve Jobs wore the same outfit everyday so he didn’t have to decide what to wear; his point was it saved “decision fatigue” and freed his mind up for more creative endeavors. That has stuck with me, I find that the simple act of writing something down removes it from my mind and allows me to focus on other more creative things. I know not everyone is wired this way–but it works for me.

 

 

To go a little deeper on this crazy train–I keep a second notebook {the green one} in the same fashion. This is more of our day to day–things to do, blog posts to write, things to buy etc. just the mundane things that I jot down as I go about my week. You could use one notebook for both, but I wanted one to be more forward-thinking and one to be more day-to-day and this works for me along with my other planning systems {like our family planner, The Calendar Pad}.

 

 

To give this system a try, you simply need a notebook and a pen. You can use something as simple as a $1 composition book from Target, or like I did splurge on a nice, high-end notebook, but either way just make sure to use the very first page as a table of contents. Then, when something pops into your head, you can start a new list….just this week I started new lists on the house projects we need to do before we can sell our house and a list for topics for our new health-focused newsletter. I simply jotted them down on the first page after I started the list so I can refer back as needed.

 

It is really an easy concept–just creating a table of contents and keeping your lists in one place. You can find tons of articles and ideas online but it’s really a simple system that will help keep your thoughts and plans all in one place.

Here are some ideas of lists to keep if you are stuck:

Things to Do

Budget/Bills/Savings

House Projects

Clothes to Buy

Things to Read

Places to Travel

Birthdays/Holidays

Recipes to Try

Bucket List Items

Goals–Long Term/Short Term

Party Planner

 

I also really love this idea when you have a significant life event going on–such as a new baby, a wedding, a first home to decorate…these notebooks will provide not just organization during the process, but someday will be a special documentation when you look back on those times.

 

 

I could go on and on and on….those are the things that just pop into my head how I use my bullet journals. I hope this is helpful! If you have questions, just let me know in the comments.

Lest you think all I do is make lists, I will say I don’t use all of my systems at once. It depends on the time of year, what we have going on as a family and I am constantly tweaking and trying new things to best utilize the time I have each week. Here are some of my other time management posts you might also be interested in.

 

The Calendar Pad Organizing System

The Calendar Pad and More Organizing Tricks

Thoughtful Time Management

The Student Planner

Organizing Printables/ Organizing Binder

XO,

 

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Our posts contain affiliate links.  If you make a purchase after clicking on these links, we will earn a small commission, which helps to keep our content free.  You don’t pay a cent more than you would otherwise, since that would be tacky! Please see our full disclosure policy here.

Comments

  1. http://Hatlady12 says

    What a clever, clever idea! I am a pen and paper person only too! (I also still write letters, thank you notes and birthday cards) Just wish my handwriting was as pretty as yours! Thanks for sharing so many wonderful ideas! Sorry you have to sell your house. Are you moving again?

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