It is essentially a to-do list system which aims to help you get and stay organised. You can add trackers, weeklies or dailies (no matter all will be explained soon) to help you stay on top of every aspect of your life.
My last post explained all the essentials you will need to start a bullet journal but if you dont want to click away from that post, don’t worry, I’ve listed a few things, as guides below. You do not need to buy all of these things, they are just the things I like to use and have proven effective in my bullet journal.
- Leuchturm 1917 (link)
- Scribbles that Matter (link)
- Moleskin (link) (both dotted.) I prefer dotted as it makes drawing out spreads a lot easier and cleaner.
- Staedtler Triplus Fine Liners (link)
- Papermate Inkjoy (link)
- Staedtler Ballpoint Rainbow Pens (link.) You can use any pens you want but I love how these write.
So now that you have all you need, let’s get down to the nitty gritty on how to start your bullet journal!
If you have chosen a Leuchtturm 1917, your notebook already comes with an index, where you track all of your spreads. This makes it so much easier to find things when you start filling up your BuJo. If you have a Moleskin, you’d have to write your own index but it is pretty simple. This isnt something everyone needs. Personally, as I have progressed along with my bullet journal, I found I was using the index less and less.
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I actually forgot to put a key in when I first started my bullet journal, which is funny because the whole BuJo system is dependent on this key. Although, as I went along I kind of made my own key, to what suits me and my tasks but I am definitely going to be trying the bullet journal key in my future bullet journal because it makes my tasks look so much clearer.
YEAR AT A GLANCE
Although it is so tedious writing down 1-30/31 twelve times, this spread really helps with future planning and the planning of your monthly dashboards because you just need to flip to the front of your bujo to see when the next month starts and end. Some people even use the year at a glance to track birthdays, like I’ve done, holidays and other personal monthly occurrences.
You can also use a future log for future planning. I like doing this two/ three months in advance at a time. It’s so nice having a future log because you can see the dates when you are/ are not available. This helps so much when you have a deadline coming up because as soon as you flip to that page you’re like: ‘okay, wow, i need to get this sorted ASAP.’
So the bullet journal wasn’t really made for goals but more motivation. However, it has been heavily adapted since then and it’s your journal, you can include what you want, such as trackers and goals. Having a goals page is such a great tool, to help you work towards them. Seeing them constantly will remind you that each day should be a step towards achieving them.
Collections are simply groups of one thing on a page. For example, you can have books to read, movies to watch and tv shows you’ve watched. These are just fun pages that help you track things. For example, here you can see how I track how many times I go to the gym a week.
Speaking of tracking things, trackers are a key page/ section in nearly every Bullet Journaller’s BuJo. You can dedicate a whole page to a tracker. This can be weight loss, savings, tv show episodes, anything you want including, your monthly habit trackers. If you don’t have a lot to track, you can do what I did and add it to the bottom of your monthly spread.
A monthly spread is essentially your monthly dashboard. I still haven’t found a monthly spread which suits me and that’s okay because every month brings different changes. I already hate this monthly spread but it’s good for what I need. My monthly spread includes my goals for the month, to do’s, my work schedule and a mini calendar. Your’s can include all of that and quotes, sticky notes, whatever you want!
I LOVE this page. It is what it says it is, you simply draw/ write down your memories for that month.
I am constantly changing my weekly spreads and you will too until you find one that suits you. Don’t be afraid to mess up! I love adding my work and blogging schedule to my weekly spreads because its so much easier seeing them there then it is to constantly be flipping back to my monthly dashboard.
Forgot something? Just add it in between pages! Your bullet journal is not supposed to be perfect. In fact, its supposed to be the opposite, as long as it keeps you organised. Don’t be afraid to mess things up, that’s what the washi tape is for 😉
So, that’s How To Start a Bullet Journal. You don’t have to follow this, you do what you want to do. If you make a mistake on the way, don’t worry about it, just cover it up (with drawings, washitape, post its. etc) and move on. Also, don’t expect to get everything right right away- I’m still getting to grips with what suits me but I and you will get there.