The bullet journaling craze has hit me hard! All my favorite bloggers have gotten started on it, so naturally I had to dive in! It’s a fairly simple hobby, yet it does actually require some planning on the front end. Here are my tips to set yourself up for a good start:
1.Actually Buy a Bullet Journal
I’m all about saving money and not running out and buying brand new things right away every time a new hobby piques my interest… BUT…In the past when bullet journaling first caught my attention, I attempted to use a regular lined journal and create little grids for myself. Suffice it to say this was a total nonstarter and only left me super frustrated…get yourself a bullet journal you will love. Amazon has a ton! My stupendous blue leather Poluma journal set me back about 11 bucks.
2. Get the Right Pens
Similarly, always looking to work with what I already have versus adding unnecessary items into my home (I hate clutter and especially dislike the disruptions excess items have on the energetic qualities of my living space), I wanted to get started with the regular old ball point pen that I use to write in my lined journal. Again, it was a no go. Coloring in boxes is laborious with ball point. Plus, it’s just not cute. All joking aside, a major attraction of bullet journaling is the ability to add color to your daily journaling and meditation routine. So, get the pens that will do the job right.
My beginner marker collection includes: (listed in the order of how frequently I use them)
My bullet journaling pen is hands down the Uni Ball Signo DX .38. Again, I got all of these markers and pens on Amazon. You’ll notice a couple Sakura Gelly Roll gel pens I use for decoration here and there.
PS This is PLENTY. I already have more than I need.
For storage I’m using Mason jars, surprise surprise. Just how I use Mason jars for literally everything in my food business, I’m using them to store my pen collection. Note that it’s better to store your pens and markers with the tips facing down to prevent them from drying out. Naturally I flipped them the other way for photography purposes. For double-ended pens, so common nowadays, you might consider storing them horizontally in small trays.
3. Watch YouTube
Yep. I watched a good 10 videos and made lists of inspiration (in my regular journal) before I put any pen to paper. I watched everything by Amanda Rach Lee.
I found her following videos the most helpful and inspirational to finally get myself started.
4. Draft-but only briefly
Yes, do spend some time sketching with a pencil in your regular lined journal to get an idea of how your bullet journal is going to come together. Don’t try to do so much straight out the gate. In my first month, February, I maintained 4 pages / categories on a daily basis. This was plenty for the first month. Every day I filled in these pages:
-creative projects tracker
5. Just do it
Ultimately, you’re going to have to just get started, trust the process, and make mistakes. The most popular bullet journal personalities make mistakes all the time. Just like anything else, it amounts to experience for making different choices the next time around. In my first month February, there was a page that I set up horizontally, and for March I changed my mind and decided to change it to a vertical layout. Don’t worry about it! It’s a learning process. You’re not getting graded! It’s a new approach to journaling. Have fun!
Do you have a daily journaling practice? Does it ever feel too challenging to simply sit down and put stream of consciousness sentences down on paper? Do you think bullet journaling, with its infinite potential for creative layouts and color schemes, might be the gateway to get you interested in journaling? Are you interested in learning more? Please chime in, or share your own bullet journaling experiences in the comments below. Happy journaling!
PLUS Check out the blog plost I wrote over on Happy Hungry Journey for the teen girls in your life—Bullet Journaling 101-A Valentine to Yourself