Hobbies Organizing

More about bullet journaling

April, and I’m still journaling–yay me! It really helps to have awesome pens, although I’m not being all creative with my pages like a lot of the spreads I see online. My journal is very colorful, though, and it’s giving me a place to use my awesome sticker collection (which previously was just sitting in a binder, unused because I was afraid to let any of them go).

Since my last post, I think I’ve decided to start over with my habit tracker so that good habits and bad habits are grouped together instead of all jumbled. It’ll be easier to see trends, especially when there are too many bad boxes filled in and not enough good boxes.

I’ve started tracking medical stuff, like med bills to be paid (or that I’m waiting for); doctor appointments, both why I had them and what the result was; when I pick up new meds; and even how I’m feeling–there’s a page for anxiety attacks and a page for foot pain, with other stuff jumbled in medical misc until something looks like it’ll require more specific tracking.

I’ve got some project pages going, which is really just showing me how quickly I lose interest in my projects. (Adult ADHD here.)

I have a CAR page, where I’m tracking things I’ve noted need looking into for my car–brake light goes on haphazardly; brake pedal squeaks when released; etc. There’s a page to track my pets–their vet visits, their meds, and whenever someone throws up. I have a page for making notes after my weekly Weight Watchers meetings (first time I’ve ever made notes about meetings!); and several pages now of notes on my Blue Apron meals–what’s good, what’s bad, how long each one takes, how I might have modified the recipe, and whether it reheats ok.

Zeva (gray) and Jack (orange)

One thing I’m noticing is that, keeping track of all this stuff is not actually changing any of my behaviors. I’m not spending less, I’m not cleaning the cat box more often, I’m not getting to that blown-out light bulb any sooner. I’m mostly kicking myself more because I’m writing down all the stuff I’m failing at and acknowledging it, instead of staying in my denial bubble. Is this a good thing or a bad thing? Maybe a step in the right direction? I’m not sure, so I made an appointment with my therapist, who I haven’t seen since last summer. That in itself is a positive step, so I guess for now I’m going with, bullet journal = good.

Hobbies Organizing

It looks like I love journaling, but really, I love colorful pens

A week and a half in, and I’m still using my bullet journal every day. I think I just really like using my colored pens (so much, in fact, that I bought even more pretty pens (Staedtler Color Pen Set of 36 Assorted Colors), that just arrived ten minutes ago).

For my first week, I tried setting up my dailies in advance, three days per page. That totally didn’t work, when my Tuesday went out of control and I ran out of space for all the stuff happening that day.

This week, I started with a weekly summary on one page, to show the main things I had to remember for the coming week, and my dailies I’m doing per day, so I have the space I need, or can move stuff up when a day (like yesterday) is actually pretty non-eventful. I also have a post-it for the main items I need to keep in mind for next week (like WonderCon), and one for the main items for next month (like taxes and the L.A. Yarn Crawl).

Page lives on last page of journal.

Also, I’m a bit OCD and couldn’t bear the thought of mixing notes and lists with my dailies, weeklies and monthlies, so I put all the non-linear stuff–lists, trackers, notes, etc.–in the back of the notebook, with negative page numbers. So far it’s working out quite well.

Lives on page -10, starting from the back of the journal. Contains my notes on each Blue Apron meal I’ve cooked this week (my first week).

And I keep googling “things to track” and reading other people’s ideas for lists and such, because, as I said before, I like using my pens and want more reasons to write with them. I have a “list of things I could be tracking”, a phone log, daily habit tracker, weight loss and steps/day trackers, list of reasons why I want to lose weight, where I’m spending money and when, etc. I’ve always loved notebooks and have a ton of them, but I’ve always had trouble actually filling them with anything. This time I’m determined to fill every page until my chronological stuff and my non-linear stuff eventually meet somewhere in the middle. In fact, I think I’ll write them down as my goal for 2017.

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Bullet Journal, take two

I started a new bullet journal this weekend. I’d taken a stab at bullet-journal-ing a couple of years ago, and even managed to maintain it for a couple of months, but couldn’t keep up with it on a daily basis. Since then, I’ve still used its methods whenever I make up a task list, but I haven’t been taking full advantage of all it has to offer, so yesterday I spent a couple of hours setting up a new one, all official-like.

What is a bullet journal? Have you been living under a rock? It’s a notebook specifically organized to help you maximize your time and help you identify what’s important, and what isn’t. There’s a lovely intro video on that can explain it better than I can. And if you’re really brave, you can search for bullet journals on Pinterest, and see all the amazing, creative layouts people have devised (and that I will never achieve myself, fo shizzle).

So far, I have my index, birthday and other annual events in there, plus my monthly reminders and goals for March, and the first week of daily task lists. Looking at all the potential pages on Pinterest, I’m thinking of a Weight Watchers page (tracking weight, days I tracked food, and days I exercised (which so far is none)), project pages for knitting projects, and project pages for work projects. And maybe a page to track how often I blog (ha!). I think it’s supposed to be motivational as well as organizational, we’ll see if it works. The pages of this notebook are thicker and more substantial than the last notebook I’d worked with, so I think that will help. And I’m going to try to keep the book on me, so I don’t forget to put things in it. Maybe I’ll even create a page to track the days I use my bullet journal.

It’s possible this was all just an excuse to use my pretty new pens, but I’m hoping to keep up with this, and I’m hoping it will help keep me from feeling so overwhelmed. *fingers crossed*