A Bullet Journal Journey

I am really into planners.

I love planning my week, my days, jotting down goals and to-lists. I like knowing what’s coming, what to look forward to, or checking my progress on certain tasks. I have bought all kinds of stationary and kept different systems to try to keep myself organized. But I was always on the hunt for something better. Something more personalized to my lifestyle.

The thing with store-bought planners is that they aren’t as easily customizable as a blank notebook.  But I thought a blank notebook would require too much work because I like to plan ahead and didn’t want to draw out my own grid for 365 days. And the store-bought planners were already ready for action. But they didn’t always have enough space for everything I wanted to keep track of.

Then I heard of bullet journaling.

it still looked like work in most aspects: people were drawing such pretty layouts. I thought of my own artistic skills combined with my handwriting and decided it wasn’t worth the mess. But finding a planner was hard, and I didn’t want to waste any of my own printer paper and ink to print out copies of pages from templates i made myself or found online. Besides, I didn’t want to use a binder for my planning because I find binders bulky and less compact than a notebook/small planner.

Needless to say, I was getting frustrated scrolling through mountains of layouts and planners on Pinterest. I needed an easier solution.

I needed to try a bullet journal.

So I went on Amazon and bought a notebook with dots so I could draw my own lines, and the lack of gridlines will help my eyes not go weird since there won’t be so many lines. And some washi tape for good measure. I was going all in.

I decided I was going to go the layout route and not the typical list form because it seemed an easier format to make future plans without losing them, and the symbols and list format got a little too confusing for me. So I took out my G2 pilot pens and started drawing. Well, that was after scouring Pinterest on the epic quest for a layout idea.

I figured I would keep it simple: a monthly tracker, a calendar view, and a weekly view. I used different colors to try to make it fun. I used a stencil to make to important headers more fancy. I put Glossier stickers on the front and back because I received some when I ordered the Boy Brow (love it, by the way) and wanted to make my notebook more edgy.

It still looks like crap to me. Note my aforementioned artistic talent. And I barely use it. The only things I have been writing down are my work times. I don’t use it to plan blog posts or other tasks like I wanted to … I’m not sure what I have been doing with my life but I just haven’t been in the planning spirit. Maybe because I don’t give myself time.

To be quite honest, I think the layout I chose is not the problem. I made a space for exercise and money to help keep track of those goals daily. I erased the weekly tracker I had on my dry-erase board so I could focus on my monthly tracker. At first, I thought it was because a bullet journal was not for me. But I realized it was my own lack of motivation.

My problem is that I work every day, but have nothing really “due” anymore. I don’t take my own deadlines seriously because they don’t have a real effect on my life. I don’t receive payment or even grades for my personal writing or goals, so I work less hard for them. It’s the cold, hard truth. A truth a wasn’t taking seriously until I reevaluated what I wanted my life to be like.

So why did I write this long post about my issues with planning?

Because I want to make a change. I am currently reading You are a Badass: How to Stop Doubting Your Greatness and Start Living an Awesome Life, and currently listening to Millennial Podcast (check out my review), and both have inspired me to push a little harder towards the goals that may not make me money but will make me happy.

I don’t blog for money (yet). I don’t have a half-finished novel because I want to someday publish it and become a millionaire. I just want to entertain and connect with people. I want to give them stories, someone to relate to.

How am I going to achieve all my goals and work harder on making 2017 my year? The bullet journal I worked so hard to put together. I am doing me for me, and that can be seen in the time I took to draw up something to help myself instead of tossing the notebook (I wouldn’t truly waste paper like that) and buying a new planner (little late in the year anyway).

We are going to do this, 2017, whether we have the “perfect planner” or not. I may not have the hang of my own bullet journal yet, but I will get a grip on these goals and start moving.

What are you doing to help better achieve your goals? Anyone else give bullet journaling a try? Share in the comments, I love hearing from you!

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