Change and Changes (AKA My Journey to Bullet Journaling)

Flickr image by https://www.flickr.com/photos/joelmontes/

Flickr image by https://www.flickr.com/photos/joelmontes/

Ah. So you noticed the many, many, many months I did not post.

Yes, I noticed too.  Much of that was due to the uneventful life I lead. The rest was sheer forgetfulness/laziness/I’m grasping at excuses here hoping you’ll buy at least one of them.

But change, at last, has reared its head, and so I am finally journaling these changes so I can remember them in case I forget them again. I’m not senile…at least, I don’t think so. But heck if I can remember much of anything these days.

In order to combat this cursed forgetfulness–or maybe as a means to prove life is not as dull as I imagine–I have started journaling in a whole new way.  Two Words:

Bullet Journal

My friend Erin Shakespear brought this term to my attention way back in July. I’d never heard it before, and I will admit that I took an instant dislike to it.

The reason: it sounded like a journaling method used by those who are non-writers or hate writing (you know, because I was trying to figure out what bullets had to do with journaling, and I came up with a journal that uses bullet points, which is exactly what it is).   But I am not that person. I LOVE writing.  I am also a prolific journaler (don’t laugh–I know I’m terrible journaling here on this blog, but I’m on my 20-something-ish personal, bound paper journal).

But I pushed through my first impressions and checked out the original Bullet Journal website…and decided I that while I still disliked the term, I was well on my way to disliking the idea as well.  It sounded like a cross between a daily/weekly planner and a journal in a convenient bullet list form just like I used to write my old college class notes.  Not my favorite things by any stretch of the imagination, let me tell you.

Yes, it’s true that I detest daily/weekly planners. I prefer a Month-At-a-Glance view of upcoming events.  I also detest lists of any kinds–do not tell me to start a to-do list unless you are certain you wouldn’t mind a losing a body part or two.

But knowing the way my friend Erin works, I had to figure out what appealed to her about this bullet journal idea. Usually if she thinks something is awesome, I do, too.

So I turned to YouTube and typed in “Bullet Journals.”

And I watched videos like this one. And this one.  And especially this one.

And at last, I understood.

My artistic side was squealing things like “Look at all the shapes and colors!” and “They are so pretty!” and “I want one NOW” that a few days later, on August 5th, I gave in and started one.

But I went cheap.

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Mon journal…voila!

Since this was going to be an experiment to see if I could really love his thing I hated the name of and possibly just hated period, a good old graph composition notebook would serve my purposes. It had to be graph paper, though, and not an ordinary lined book. Trust me when I say that YOU NEED THE BOXES. (Well, I need the boxes, anyway.)

I also bought some trusty felt-tip pens.

The package said this:

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“Writing won’t bleed through paper.”

But, alas, my misplaced trust in truth in advertising has once again failed me.

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#NoBleedThroughFail

(Though, truthfully, the very thin paper in the notebook is also to blame.)

Anyway, I set to work. I tweaked it to fit ME, just like they said I should. So I opted for this monthly format instead:

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I decided this would replace both my planner (which I never used after the first month anyway) and my garden journal (which I use much more often but not nearly as much as I wish I did), so I added a place for my garden tasks on the same page as my month-at-a-glance.

And for the record, I still DO NOT MAKE LISTS. But I do log what I accomplish every day, in a daily log like this:image

Yes, yes, this looks a lot like a task list, you’re thinking.  The difference is that usually I write it AFTER I’ve completed the task, and I also write down other things I do (and other things my family and friends do or say). I really hate staring at a list of things TO DO, but I love looking at a list of things DONE.

I’m proud to say that, as of today, I haven’t missed a day yet. But I’m not so proud to admit that I was wrong about the journal. Not about it’s name (it’s still…blech), but about how I thought I’d dislike the idea. I’ve come to admire, respect, and love the Journal That Must Not Be Named. I am glad I took the time to embrace this particular change in my life.  Because I now use it for everything.  In my Whatever It’s Called Because It’s Not a Journal or a Planner but I Hate It’s Real Name, I have pages for things like:

-My homeschool plans

-My home improvement ideas

-My drawings (I’m working on faces for now, and no, they aren’t any good…I am not an artist as much as I wish I was an artist)

-My business ideas

-My health goals

-My Scripture studies

And I love that I am learning to NOT FIX mistakes, and to be cool that it’s not perfect. (See the monthly photo above for a good example of this…see where I started to cross out September 1st?  LOL)

I am a better woman now because of this Journal That Needs a Better Name. Truly.

But don’t worry. Those 20-something regular, old-fashioned journals have not been replaced. See? I just started a new one recently. Notice the dates.

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Because, yes. Two journals ARE better than one.

 

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