Well hello there and thank you for joining me!
Update*** I have made a video(my very FIRST YouTub video) about this blog post and it is below.***
At the end of May 2016, I discovered the wonderful world of bullet journaling and I have had my face in a book full ready to “flare” up journal pages ever since. Like most of you, I found out about the bullet journal system through one of my many visited social media outlets and although I cannot remember exactly which one, but I can say it was probably Pinterest since I spend a lot of time looking at new crafty hobbies on there.
Once I discovered bullet journaling I could not wait to get started but first, because I am crazy like that, I had to get as much information as I possibly could. I spent the next few days watching videos, looking at pictures, and reading blog posts. Finally, I made my rounds to all of my local craft stores and got me some markers, stickers, washi tape and I purchased a simple grid style journal that I had found at an office supply store on clearance for $5! I was ready.
I jumped into it without really doing too much research on the original Bullet Journal system created by Ryder Carroll and what a bullet journal’s intended use was. I knew that it was meant to be a form of a planner and a simple way to organize your life but I was more interested in the fun parts that I was seeing on social media where the creativity was incorporated. So I really just jumped in with both feet and started with some simple pages which turned into not so simple pages after I tried too hard to give them “flare”.
First I was sure to add an “if found” page with the promise of a $20 reward if returned to me safely. I found this idea online and thought that it was clever but then once I did it I didn’t really care for the way that it turned out. To me, it seemed a bit too busy and a bit messy.
As you can see Next, I added an index page (yes only 1), which I then realized wasn’t enough since one month took up almost one whole page. Again I gussied it up with some lettering at the top and a little bit of washi tape but overall I kept that one simple. Other than the fact that I knew I would have to get creative and add to my index somehow later, overall I liked it.
Okay, so the next set of pages I liked a lot and they were borrowed from something I saw on Pinterest as well and while I did not find the year at a glance calendar useful, nor will I be using it in future journals, I had fun just seeing if I could make it. The yearly goals page was a lot of fun to make and although I have really gotten much better at my doodling, I feel as if it was something that I enjoyed making and I also enjoyed flipping back to it to look at it on a regular basis.
The next few pages, in my opinion, just went haywire. I used my first weekly spread more like a daily spread and as you can see below, there is a LOT going on in there! This is the point where I realized that I do not like washi tape in my journal as a decoration. I feel like it makes my pages too busy and it is hard to use the bullet journal system if your page is too distracting.
The next image was my June 2016 tracker which I loved and if you noticed on the 10th I completely stopped working out because that was the day that I woke up with a brown recluse spider bite and I spent the rest of the month recovering. I enjoyed the mood tracker and although I do not care for the look of the entire tracker, I will be using it in the future.
In this photo you’ll see my attempt at a gratitude page, now I have always been in the habit of writing a daily gratitude so when I saw this in others’ journals I was excited. The only problem I had with this one is that I didn’t realize that I would realistically need two pages in order to legibly track the entire month. Plus I’m not head over heels fo the design I made either.
Next was a savings tracker page that was inspired by Boho Berry. I cannot express how much I adore this lady and her bullet journal pages. She keeps it simple all while coming up with some great and original ideas. If you have not had the chance I would recommend taking a tour of her site and her videos on YouTube. With all of that said, I hate this tracker, not because it isn’t functional but because I effed it up big time and I had to try to use more washi tape to fix the boo boos. If this was a daily or weekly thing I would have just bare with it for a short time and then moved on. But since this was a long term goal tracker I was not at all crazy about it.
But…..I managed to fix my mistakes with a simple combination of washi tape and curse words.
Finally, I began to find my groove. This set of daily pages was working so beautifully for me. I like the room I had to write. I liked the weather tracker and I really enjoyed using colored pencils to color in my pages.
Right in the middle of all of this, I decided that I needed a bill tracker. Like the gratitude log, I also was already implementing something like this in a small notebook that I kept by my office desk so when I saw other people doing this I jumped right in. I had a hard time with this one and I kept messing it up but I managed to make it work and I plan to keep using this in future books. I will say though that in the future I will not be looking so far ahead. Especially since I don’t think an entire bujo will last a whole year.
Next was another idea from Boho Berry. Miss Berry follows the Miracle Morning book and lifestyle, she talks a lot about it on her blog and on her YouTube channel. As I am no stranger to the occasional “life diet” as my fiance’ Kyle likes to call it, I decided to read the book and I was inspired to follow the Miracle Morning routine. Since Miss Berry had a very cool level 10 life goal tracker I decided to copy it. I do have to say that I don’t ever even glance at this. Even though I enjoyed the book and follow some of the practices I didn’t really find this too helpful but I am glad it works for her and many others. I have to admit that I am not one to use the sappy quotes and from now on if I quote someone it is going to be more entertaining that serious.
And then I got the bright idea to change it up and try something different. Even though I liked the previous spread sooooo much I figured that since I was new tho the Bujo life then I should try out different layouts to see what works. So like a fool I took two steps back and tried this spread. This was back to the chaotic weekly spread that I was so unhappy with before. Why did I do this? The other thing about this was I actually drew out two weeks in advance so I was stuck with it even longer than I wanted to. This was the spread that helped me realize that I don’t need a to-do list, a shopping list, or a mini tracker because it is a bit redundant with the other tracker.
Last, but certainly not least is my favorite page from my newbie bullet journal experience and it is my doodles page. This page was the most fun to make and even though it is more of a “what happened in June ” doodles page I really enjoy going back to it and taking a look at what happened in June. I will be changing it to a monthly memories page, though.
Welp, I hope you enjoyed reading about my first experience with the bullet journal and as I start to move forward with this I plan to share my experiences and new pages. Recently I decided to splurge and purchase the Leuchtturm 1917 journal and some new tools so I can start from scratch now that I have a better idea of what I like. I will keep my other journal of course and possibly even use it for a trial run book for new layout ideas. Soon I also plan to make some videos about my journey from this journal to the next and what I have changed and those videos can be found on my new YouTube channel.
POW!! Here it is!