Back in January, I wrote a post about how I was using my bullet journals. [UPDATE: I’ve since written another post in January 2016.] Since then, I’ve made some changes to how I use them and I thought I would post an update here. I’m going to focus on my personal bullet journal, since the way I use my work journal has remained mostly the same.
The first change is mostly cosmetic. My dad had a set of nice fine-tipped markers which my mom sent me last year, and I decided to use one color per month to make my journal look a little more artistic. Here’s my monthly planning page for June–what’s on the page has remained the same as earlier this year, but I like having the color. I’m also writing the day of the week & date larger and in the same color marker as the month for the daily pages.
This is how I’m laying out my daily pages at this point. At the beginning of the year, I was worried about how much space each month was going to take, but at this point, I’m not as concerned about that. Also, if I need to buy a second notebook, I’ll buy a second notebook. I’m still giving myself 15 lines/day, but I’ve doubled that space by letting each day take up two columns.
In the left-hand column, I have tasks and appointments that I want to complete that day. Some of these are date-specific; others are ongoing projects, but projects that do have an end-date. In the right-hand column, I have daily personal tasks, like cleaning and reminding myself to floss.
I also wanted to have a record of what I’m doing for meals, mostly so I can look back and see how well my menu planning for a given month worked. And if I have space and want to, there’s a place for journal-type notes.
I abandoned the stars/priority method I talked about in my earlier post. It was working for awhile, and then it started becoming too much work, and wasn’t actually helping me accomplish the goals I needed to. So now I try to list the most urgent/important goals first for each day, but aside from that I’m not using priority markers except for occasional urgent tasks (like mail, below).
I’m also experimenting with a visual representation of my day. It’s helpful to me to have a sense of how much time I have and when, especially since my work schedule is variable. I’m marking work hours, and then marking off time in half-hour increments, since I often work on projects for that amount of time. I haven’t been doing this very long in my personal journal, but I’ve found it to be helpful. (I find the idea of choronodex planning appealing, but the actual system is very confusing and counter-intuitive to me.)
Finally, I had been using an adapted system of checks and crossing out, instead of the official bullet journal legend. I’ve actually gone back to the original system, at least for now (you can see on Wednesday that I did some checks, but then started filling in squares again). That’s part of the beauty of the Bullet Journal system, in my opinion–it’s both structured and flexible, and you can adapt so it meets you where you are right now.
Other bullet journal resources:
Kelly Jensen’s post at Stacked Books
A Bullet Journal FB group started by Sophie Brookover