I am a huge fan of bullet journals. A recent convert, only entering my third month of doing this, I wanted to start tracking how my bullet journal style changes as time goes by. Only, I want to preserve my artwork before I write in it for the month. Because, hello, it’s gorgeous and personal, but it gets messy really quickly when I need to jot things down. Here is my September 2016 bullet journal set up, maybe you’ll be inspired for your bullet journal.
Evolving Style and Needs
Something that I really love about the bullet journal is that I can decorate it. By doodling, adding photos like a scrapbook and experimenting with my calligraphy, I really get to personalize this book. Seeing as I am a person that likes to change my mind and my interests are more often than I change my clothes, I appreciate that the customization options for this are, quite literally, endless. Every month is different.
I love my start of the month. I have an almost blank page, with a ‘Hello Insert Month‘ for every month I’ve journal’d so far. By the end of the month I have a page with ‘Hello Insert Month‘ and full of small photos that were taken during the month. Yes, the many selfies and pictures taken on my phone do get uploaded to the computer, transferred to an SD card and taken to Wal-Mart to be printed. #OldSchool
On the adjacent page I have the month listed vertically where I can fill in birthdays, appointments, adventures we go on. By the end of the month it often has so many scribbles, arrows and cross outs that it is unreadable its so messy. But I know how to read it, and I can correspond the photos on the ‘Hello’ page to the adventure we took it on written on the next page.
Tracking Dates and Habits
This is the third habit tracker style I’ve tried. Not to far off from last months, but still a new variation that I am excited to try. Let me explain it real quick. You can see that this is the important date tracker page, it has every date listed in the month on it’s own line in a light brown. The habit tracker lines up with those dates, so as I make my way down the month, I fill in the habit boxes. Did that sound right? Seems more difficult to type than say in person with hand motions.
The habits I am tracking this month are written in a grey in the boxes that I will eventually colour in. It saves me space, and I didn’t like that my previous trackers weren’t more compact with the labels. Hopefully my solution will do well. Below is a photo of last months habit tracker. It’s still incomplete, but you can see what I am talking about and this whole section won’t be a waste of words you’ve just read.
Oh, and a blurry preview of the ‘Hello’ page. It’s a work in progress until the middle of the next month generally. Just because I print the photos doesn’t mean I do it in a timely fashion.
ourRADhouse.com Blog Planning
Blog planning is something that I am really trying to master… or at least get on board with. My goal is to post consistently for a year, and I messed up at the end of August this year to spend a few days in self-care mode. No working was done. But I did have a game plan for those days I missed, thanks to my new blog planning page I insert every month.
I like to write out a mini calendar for the month and colour in the days when I post. Simply so I can have a visual of when I post when I look back. My current post days are Monday, Wednesday and Fridays. So at the end of the month I will have three columns coloured in. Also, if I do a bonus post, upload a video or do something else note-worthy, a day will be coloured in as well.
I haven’t really made monthly goals for my blog yet. Aside from the posting consistently for a year, but that’s a long term goal. I need to work on some short term goals, that are helpful baby steps to my long term. Not yet knowing what they are for this month, I will fill several in and hope to complete them. At the very bottom of the page are the ways I am able to promote my posts. We’ll talk about that another day.
Lastly, you can see I have three green boxes. They are my post trackers. Divided into the categories I am posting in currently (lifestyle, fitness, travel) I can look at the date, check off whether I’ve taken photos, edited them, written a draft post, edited that, added links, and the post title. This is a new set up for me, and I really like how it looks so far. Last month I was easily able to create the Spell your Name Workout Challenge series because I stopped to look at posting as a whole month. I planned them out easily. Blogging editorial calendars… I can see the benefit. Big Time.
Child Milestone Tracker
Directly above is my August 2016 Gregory Milestone tracker, because the September (photographed beside ourRADhouse.com page) just says his name and that doesn’t really give you a good idea of what the page is.
I got the idea of a milestone tracker when I was on a Pinterest pinning spree and came across the famous 1-year birthday Chalkboard photographs. They are always so much fun, and I thought Why can’t I do a small version of that every month?
So now I am. As my writing skills, fonts, doodles and inspiration grow, these pages will start to look more like these cool pictures we have all pinned at least once on Pinterest.
Becoming a more positive person is difficult when you’ve spent a good part of your life in ‘the dark place’ as I call it But one technique has finally clicked with me. Keeping a gratitude log. There are always good parts of a crappy day. We must always look for the silver lining. That is what being optimistic is. Sitting down and focusing on my whole day to find the good things, I never have enough space to write them down. Which is a good feeling.
This month I’ve added an end of the month reflection area as well. I hope to fill it with a summary of my month, my thoughts of how I’ve grown, how I want to grow… just something good. I’m not sure exactly, it’s time to reflect. At the end of the month. I look forward to seeing how it is used.
Dailies are a constant struggle for me. I am so indecisive, and I often make mistakes while drawing. See photo above, comment if you can spot it. But that is the beauty of a BuJo, it’s meant to have mistakes, it is meant to have growth, it’s meant to be as messy as you need it to be. Just like your life. Haha, well my life is messy. My BuJo ends up reflecting that.
This month I’m experimenting with a new setup. Each day is listed in a banner, under the banner I list any appointments or tasks I have for that day. 3, specifically. And if there is nothing written for the next day when I am filling in the night before, I intend to write an activity for Gregory and I to do so I start off the day with a game plan. Much needed for SAHM’s.
Beside the banner is an arrow, under the arrow is space for me to write. This is a reflection of my day, an idea I have, something I learned, a quote, a conversation, a play by play of an event… whatever it is… it’s written. I find if I have space to fill in tasks, they are filled with pointless tasks. We need to make sure we aren’t just doing things to do them. Do them with purpose.
When I don’t complete many, or any of the many pointless filler tasks I listed, I feel like I didn’t accomplish anything that day. I know that isn’t true, but when I look back in a week or two that is what I see. By starting to write what I did during the day, at least part of it, so I can have a note saying I did do something to jog my memory of the REAL day I had. Also essential as a SAHM because the days are long but the years are short. Or something like that.
Before You Go
So there you have it, my September 2016 bullet journal set up. With a few photos from last month as a gift. Being creative with my hands and watching this book fill up and get more detailed as I go is really satisfying. I am really impressed with how much progress I’ve made in the two months I’ve used this BuJo. Not only creatively, but keeping on track with my goals, appointments, BIRTHDAYS, and daily tasks.
Do you use a bullet journal? Do you know what one is? Let me know in the comments, and then go instagram search the following hashtags to be inspired to go to Staples and get your own supplies. #BulletJournal #BuJo #BuJoJunkies #PlanWithMe Le Sigh, I get lost in the bullet journal world for hours… not so good for SAHM moms. Haha