Bullet Journal: Productivity god?


This is a little different review than I normally do. Mostly because it is not about an individual product but rather a process. Last year I ran into the problem of not being productive. In addition to that, I was ungrateful, and angry. This was right before Christmas and in no way is good to go through the Christmas season with that mentality. I tried a few methods, and even bought a Panda Planner, which was an awesome product at the time. I have a review linked here. The bullet Journal offers more flexibility and better customization to fit my everyday needs.

I have found myself being incredibly distracted from getting my much needed tasks and chores done. I get so wrapped up in my work, that I simply tune out everything else. I have found writing my tasks down is pure gold.

What the hell is it? 

A bullet journal is a method of tracking information from a annual, monthly and even daily way. It is a series of organizational steps to help you remember and prioritize information throughout your life. It is an analog method; and in a digital industry and world may seem outdated. But I am an extremely visual person, to the extent that a digital app just doesn’t cut it with me.

A Bullet Journal is a uniformed way of organizing your thoughts and tasks. It starts with an Index to map out your journal. This is followed by a Future log to see the next 3 months, 6 months, or even a year ahead. Then you can add a monthly log for scheduling your next month out, and then write your daily tasks. The best part is, it is fully customized to what works for you and your situation. There are many videos, and websites directed to enhancing your Bullet Journal. You can take these methods and improve your way of doing things with each page. Get the notebook designed for Bullet Journaling the Leuchtturm 1917

Why is is so good?

The BuJo (Bullet Journal. I had to look that one up sadly) adapts to whatever you throw at it. You can create lists galore and keep track of all kinds of information. I am able to use it to sync what I have done at work and home into a tidy little book. I then can look back and see where I fell short on tasks and what I actually accomplished over the last week, month or year. It is what you put into it. You need a simple and clean layout? You put that together. If you want a colorful and artistic layout full of complex organizational symbols, go for it! The point is, it is yours.

What is bad?

The journal is meant to be able to be used everyday all day. And so far (day 3) I have been using it steadily. Other journals and planners I would use one day, but not the next and get bored with filling it out. I haven’t gotten bored yet, which is a good sign. The bad part is I am constantly going back to it and drawing more lines, adding things I need or changing stuff around. As I figure out what I want and get the design that works well for me down that will change I am sure. But for now, I am being productive in drawing in the notebook.

Where do I get one?

This is another awesome thing… you can use any notebook. You need more space, get a bigger book. You want a compact one get a smaller one. You want horizontal lines already set up or boxes get a note book that is lined or boxed. I opted for a dot matrix one on amazon for $10 and then got a stainless steel ruler for $5. I tried the lined notebook I already had, but was quite frustrated when the horizontal lines started making my boxes look weird. But for those who already have a lined notebook, go ahead and start now.

It takes maybe 15 minutes to actually get started and has helped me be much more productive over this last weekend than I have been in a while. On the bullet journal website you can get a journal that is already titled on some pages and have the basic layout structure for your index and future logs.

Recommendation:

I would suggest that anyone seeking to be more productive, but hasn’t been able to find the right app, or the right planner/notebook, try this method out. It is simple and effective and can excel where traditional pre-filled planners fall short. Check it out and let me know your thoughts and ideas on BuJo for dads. Check out our youtube channel where I will be doing some extra videos on the BuJo here in the next few weeks.

BASIC SETUP:

  1. Start with a blank notebook (Leuchtturm 1917 is recommended), and title the first two pages as INDEX. This will be your list of the contents of you journal.
  2. The next open spread should be your future log. Separate the pages into six boxes where you will have your next six months. You will write upcoming events that will be happening in each box for each month. Number the bottom of the pages to enter into your index and and reference
  3. On the next page is your monthly outlook. There are many ways to set this up, but a basic way would be to number the left page from 1-28, 30 or 31, this will be the dates for the month. Next to the numbers you can label the day of the week with the first letter of the day. Then you can fill in key events, or tasks for those days. On the right hand page you will write your task list in bullet format.
  4. On the next spread is your daily log. The simple setup would be to write the date (052217) and then draw a line underneath and write your daily tasks in bullet format. As you complete tasks draw an X over the bullet. If you don’t get the task done and need to do it tomorrow draw an > though the bullet. If you decide you will perform the task later draw an < and then write it under the monthly or six month overview for when you are going to perform the task.

You can make it so much more comprehensive and expand it in a thousand ways. As you can see from my photos I have added calendars and lists to keep track of notes and dates that I needed. As I said before you can customize it to fit your individual needs. You could do a workout log, finance log, food log, travel log, and an infinite number of other things.

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