Thursday, September 21, 2017

6 Important Things I Wish I Knew Before Starting a Bullet Journal

I only started my Bullet Journal a few months ago so I still have a lot to learn and practice. However, I have made so many mistakes and realized a lot of things that I wish I knew before starting a Bullet Journal. Here's a list of 6 important things I wish I knew before I started mine:

things you should know before you start your bullet journal

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1 ➤ You make mistakes! 

There will be scribbles and cancellations and strike-throughs. You may add an extra day to a month while making your yearly overview or make a spelling mistake because you are so focused on trying to make your lettering look perfect. Sh!t will happen and there's nothing you can do other than practicing. I was annoyed every time I made a mistake because I saw all these pretty, flawless bullet journals online and I couldn't make it that pretty. Give yourself time and you will get better at it!

2 ➤ Aesthetic!

You should watch a lot of Bullet Journal videos on YouTube, so you can perhaps figure out what aesthetic you like the best. I didn't do this and I didn't even realize I wanted my Bullet Journal to look like a certain way so I winged it and sometimes winging it doesn't work the the best. My Bullet Journal was all over the place and I didn't feel like using it. I re-made my journal to an aesthetic that I liked best after doing some research on YouTube and getting inspiration from videos that were similar to my aesthetic. You can even search on Instagram if you are aiming for some beautiful layouts!

3 ➤ It can get overwhelming!

There are so many types and aesthetics and layouts and elements you can add and modify to the Bullet Journal. Even though that's the beauty of this type of journal, it can get quite overwhelming at times. It's hard to choose what you want to include and what you don't. I suggest adding elements you think you will use and each month trying a new element. I never thought a monthly spread calendar would be useful to me, but after I tried it out, it's my most used and most favorite element in my Bullet Journal.

4 ➤ You don't have to include everything!

You don't have to add each element from the original Bullet Journal Design or the most commonly used ones. Your Bullet Journal should be functional and designed to suit your requirements. So only add elements you will really use. If you know you don't have a busy week and will only be binge-watching a TV show half of the time, don't dedicate a daily log for that week, just have a weekly log.
If you don't watch a lot of TV shows, there's no need to add a TV show log. You get the point, right?

5 ➤ Placement

When I started my Bullet Journal, I didn't properly plan out what elements I wanted to add. I had a rough idea; year spread, TV show tracker, 2017 goals, monthly spreads, etc. I ended up not realizing I had a few more elements to add like "Favorite Quotes" till I finished my first monthly spread. The problem with this was, if I had an element that is just going to be one page and used throughout the year, it should be at the front of the journal, before the monthly logs, etc. My bullet journal became disorganized because of this. So you should plan out which general elements you want to add to the front of the page (so that they are easier to find and your journal looks organized) and add those first. Leave a page or two if you feel like you might have another idea or two to add in those pages. You are going to use your Bullet Journal to be more organized so the journal should reflect that in its structure.

6 ➤ Notebook

One thing I definitely didn't think was a priority when I decided to make a Bullet Journal was investing in a good notebook. I thought it didn't really matter but as I started making my journal more creative and using different pens/markers, there was major bleed through and the paper quality honestly sucks. Definitely invest in a good bullet journal if you are confident you will maintain it for the entire year at least. Though, I do have one thing to say, which is, if you are starting out with a trial mindset (i.e. you are just testing the waters with this new planning technique) then using a random notebook isn't the worst idea. You'll save money and you can make mistakes and not cringe yourself to death (just kidding). If your notebook is giving you too much of a hard time you may not want to make another bullet journal, so that's also another side to the coin. 


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