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What is a Bullet Journal?

Technology has its benefits but sometimes you can’t beat good old pen and paper. The Bullet Journal is an ingenious organisation system where creativity and mindfulness can flourish.

Love them or loathe them, writing lists for shopping through to to-do lists makes day-to-day tasks much more efficient. There is a better and more attractive alternative to scraps of paper, Post-It Notes or whatever comes to hand. Enter the Bullet Journal.

It’s an analogue system I designed to track the past, organise the present and plan for the future - founder Ryder Carroll

Designed by digital product designer Ryder Carroll, a Bullet Journal uses a notebook as a daily, monthly and annual system that helps you organise and keep track of things at a glance. It can be used as a diary and for reflection too. It is a log of what is important for you. Topics are endless and can include anything from scheduling catch ups with friends, meal planning, tracking mood, exercise and finances or motivation for eating well. It is also useful for all ages. Teenagers and students often use them for keeping on top of homework deadlines.

People have taken Bullet Journals to an absolute art form. Google them and you’ll be lost in wonder at the creativity and time people pour into them. We asked Cristina from My Life In a Bullet (who shared her pages with us here) for some tips on how to start.

  • Keep it simple 
    There's nothing worse than giving up bullet journaling because the pages didn't turn out the way you intended. The easiest way to avoid that is by keeping things simple (at least at first). You'll figure out what works best for you the more you use your bullet journal, so once that happens you can let your creativity go wild and embellish the pages as much or as little as you want.
     
  • Don't let your productivity be dependent on creativity!
    There have been times when I didn't create useful spreads just because I didn't have any inspiration on how to make them aesthetically pleasing (which is such a shame!). Simple doesn't have to be boring! So I always prioritize productivity above creating beautiful spreads. The purpose of a bullet journal is to make it work for you, not the other way round!
     
  • Embrace the mistakes 
    Look, mistakes will happen (I hate that too) - but that shouldn't hold you back from starting and it also doesn't mean you have to rip out the pages. Add a funny note to the mistake or cover it up with white-out/stickers/drawings. Whatever you do, don't let perfectionism stand between the amazing tools that the bullet journal has to offer.

The Bullet Journal method is a mindfulness practice disguised as a productivity system


The beauty of a Bullet Journal is you can make it your own. If you’re artistic it’s a wonderful way to introduce creativity into your routine. Or keep it simple with only text. Whatever your preference, keeping a Bullet Journal helps to make the most of your precious time.

To discover more including a four minute video on how to start your own Bullet Journal visit https://bulletjournal.com/pages/learn

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