Journaling has been around for a very long time and you’ve probably heard of bullet journals. That is unless you’ve been living under a rock for the past several years. A bullet journal is a new way to journal, it is just a fancier way to journal and probably a lot more fun. However, understand exactly what it is and what is involved is a little trickier.
In bullet journaling, you are essentially combining all of your thoughts, finances, schedules, to-do lists, and miscellaneous life notes into a single journal. It is a way to organize all of those different things you try to keep up with on a daily basis. It is not only fun but very helpful in reducing overall stress and anxiety.
Benefits of Having a Bullet Journal
First of all, you will benefit a lot by starting a bullet journal. Remember there is really no right or wrong way to do it. It is supposed to make life easier for you, not more difficult. Don’t be pressured to have it organized or look like others.
Here are some different ways you can benefit from having a bullet journal:
- Everything is in one place – First of all, all your different to-do lists, schedules, and notes are in a single journal. Many people do have journals or digital to-do lists with this type of information, but it is inconvenient having one for finances, another for home chores, and another for business to-do lists. The bullet journal lets you have everything in one place since you are using symbols and short phrases instead of long paragraphs of notes.
- It is easy to do – A bullet journal is also very easy to put together. You can do this how you like, but typically you start by creating the index, which is also becoming a broad selection of what to include. Then you number your pages and start writing.
- You can track your regular habits – Since you are writing in the bullet journal daily, you are able to track your habits and see what needs to change. It can help you see that you spend too much money on coffee and eating out. It can even let you know that you aren’t exercising enough.
Choosing the Journal
To start your bullet journal, you first need a journal and some different colored pens to use. This can be any type of journal, but choosing one that is thick enough for all your different pages and that has nice large pages is a good idea.
Look for one that can stay closed when needed, but when you open to individual pages, the spine isn’t so tight that it is hard to write in it. Also, look for thick pages in case you decide to decorate some of the pages and don’t want anything bleeding through.
Components of a Bullet Journal
While you can create the bullet journal however you like, it does help to have some direction for getting started.
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Here are some components to try and include in your bullet journal:
- The Key – The first page of your bullet journal will include your key. This will record the shorthand you use for your bullet entries. Here are some codes you could use for your key. Feel free to add to it, or modify it as needed.
- ◊ Task
- ♦ Completed Task
- → Migrated Task
- Completed Appointment
- →Migrated Appointment
- – Notes
- Index – Every bullet journal should preferably have an index. This lets you know what area different sections of the journal are located, such as grocery and meal planning, or finances. It is a great way to jot down fast notes as you can go right to that page.
- Page numbers – Naturally, since you have an index, you also need to have page numbers. You can be as creative as you want, but make sure every page is numbered and it corresponds with what is in the index.
- Signifiers – Signifiers are symbols that you assign to different types of notes. It can be helpful when you want to use them in place of longer phrases. This can be a happy or sad smiley face for your moods. A heart for a date with your significant other or a Christmas tree when scheduling holidays.
With this basic information, you will be well on your way to getting that bullet journal started.