Hi!  What’s up? It’s 2019!  If you’ve read my prior entries, then you probably have already been thinking about your goals.  You may have started thinking about the steps needed to reach your goals.  Today I want to talk about a tool to help you brainstorm, plan, and track your goals – The Bullet Journal. 

What is the Bullet Journal?

The Bullet Journal is a type of notebook.  As the Bullet Journal website states, it’s “The Analog Method for the Digital Age”.  Taken right from the cover of the book, as seen below, the notebook helps you “Track the Past, Order the Present, and Design the Future.”  So yes, it’s a notebook.  In my opinion, “journal” is a more refined name for a notebook.

I tested out this method during the month of December, and I was totally blown away.  I’ve never been more organized or more productive in one month.  Working outside the home and raising a family keeps someone busy for sure; however, busy does not equal productive.

How did I learn about the Bullet Journal?

Wow.  Ok.  Let’s take a quick step back in time.  One day I was sharing my art journal with a good friend for the first time.  I was particularly excited about a piece I had completed over the weekend.  After she perused my journal, she brought her journal out from her desk.  She had only just begun but wanted to reciprocate by sharing her journal – the bullet journal. 

Now, I am a thinker.  I don’t just start any new project or any new anything.  I think about it.  I am also a mom raising children, one with different medical needs.  It seemed like I always juggling the usual dentist appointments with other doctor appointments with work and other commitments.  It felt like those appointments were always sneaking up on me and coming at a bad time (even though I knew they were coming).  I wanted to find a way to be better organized with all the different appointments to eliminate that feeling. I remembered my friend’s journal. She kept everything written down plus she doodled and kept some artwork in there.  Would this work for me?

By mid-November, I decided to research this bullet journal thing.  Since I was familiar with Pinterest, I went there first.  I was completely blown away by all the pictures I found on Pinterest.  I didn’t know it was such a “thing”!  I still did not understand what it was.  It looked like lists, to-do lists, and personal notes.  I wondered why people do this kind of journaling. 

YouTube had loads of art journaling videos that helped me learn more about the craft, so that was my next step.  The videos there really explained what bullet journaling is and how it works the way it does.  I decided right then that I would give it a try and that is how I went from art journaling to bullet journaling.

Why Does this Work?

You might ask me, “How is this different than keeping a simple to-do list?”  Right?  I used to have those going around in my head all the time!  I get it!  Here is what makes the journal different than a “to-do list”.  It’s not just what you put down in the journal, but it’s the way you think about what you put down in the journal. 

The bullet journal is written by you, us.  When we write things down on paper with our own hand, we are also organizing our thoughts allowing for deeper processing.  Once our thoughts are written on paper, we can step back and look at them more objectively. 

The bullet journal allows us to live with intention.  When we keep our to-do lists, ideas, and plans in one place, we can evaluate what is working and what is not working in our lives.  Do we need to complete a certain task?  If so, why?  If not, don’t do it.  Spend time doing the things that make an impact on our lives today and live with intention. 

The bullet journal allows us to not only write down our goals, but it gives us an opportunity to write down why we want to reach our goals.  No matter the size of the goal the why is more important than the what, because the why gives it purpose.  With a clearly defined purpose, we are much more likely to reach our goals.

The bullet journal gives us some structure on managing our lives and getting most out of the time we have.  We are all given the same amount of time in the day.  What matters is how we use it.  The different collections within the journal (completely created by us in our own hand) are the backbones of that structure.  We design the life we want to live. 

So that’s my introduction to the bullet journal.  Does that sound like something that resonates with you?  If so, all you need is a notebook and a pen. 

I recommend reading “The Bullet Journal Method” by Ryder Carrol.  You can also visit his website at www.bulletjournal.com.  The website houses a 5-minute tutorial.  The author has also uploaded several videos on YouTube. You can find those by searching for The Bullet Journal Method.

If you like this kind of information, please give this entry a like.  If you want to see more about bullet journaling, let me know in the comments below.  We live the best version of ourselves, one step at a time.

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