Salutations! This is the introduction to my Bullet Journal.
A bullet journal is a analog system that combines a to do list, date book, and record keeper among, really, whatever else you want it to be.
As for myself I keep it to plan the month/week/day, keep track of my time, and be able to keep a log of my accomplishments to remind myself that my time is not wasted, and my days are spent doing important things that help me reach my goals. I will now walk you through my book and it’s contents.
The book starts with the Index, and is basically what it sounds like. A log of each page or pages and their contents. You mark the second and third page of your notebook as the index, then progressively add the pages and their contents as it comes up. A big idea of the journal is that you make it up as you go as not to overwhelm yourself, you should be spending more time doing the tasks in the journal than making the journal itself. Make sure you note every page with it’s number as you get to it to keep the index going strong.
The Future Log consists of small monthly segments for long term planning and rescheduling. Important dates and occasions as well.
To make, you grab a ruler or liner and make two lines across the center making 3 more or less equally sized blocks that you can write said plans in.
This is more for me. Keeping track of every symbol to be able to use the right one for the right task. I’m pretty standard with the symbols I’ve chosen.
. For task
< For scheduled task
> For migrated task
X For completion
! For important or priority
O For events
– For notes
? For research needed.
Now more into the nitty gritty of my personalized Journal. Let’s do a run through.
Notes on studying help which include
-Well lit area
-Clean work space
-Keep snacks and drinks available and don’t forget to eat or drink
-Don’t just keep to text, draw diagrams and such
In the top are Topics to Study, they are segmented into the topic itself, current understanding ranked with a number of stars which are colored in depending on knowledge of the topic. Completed which represents if, no matter how much or little I know, did it come to fruition in the project I was focusing on. And finally a New Understanding which is just like current understanding, Just going the extra mile if it’s something I wish to know more about.
In the bottom are daily work hours. I will regularly be awake for 16 hours which gives me 8 hours of sleep.
Excluding wake up time, lunch time, and downtime/sleep, I have 14 hours of potential work. That’s nice, but unrealistic as to having a personal life and enjoying music, movies, TV, company, food, any many of the other “nonprogressive” activities. It’s also better to space out activities as to better conceive and retain them. It’s been argued that 15 minute intervals are the best, but I generally find myself having more fun with 30 minutes. So to break this down in a cleaner graph.
Wake up at 6, spend a hour waking up and feeding myself, enjoy morning routine and check my daily media intake websites.
At 7, begin work for 30 minutes, then rest and leisure for 30 minutes then at the beginning of the next hour we reset this cycle
At 11am leisure, have coffee. This is to keep me going and just to enjoy.
At 12 leisure, I begin lunch and leisure which lasts for a hour, as you might have noticed this will break our previously mentioned cycle that at the end of the hour begins work. This is a transition that at the last half of 1pm begins work again, giving us the cycle just in reverse.
At the beginning of 2pm leisure, which again starts at the beginning of the hour, gives me my second coffee break. What can I say, I have a problem.
Our cycle will continue until 9pm which will mark my time where I turn off my electronics and wind down, readying myself for bed at 10.
It’s a schedule of which I’ve kept to before, it’s very satisfying in both progress and rest and I find it’s a good balance. It also gives you a good sense of time.
So in total, 7 hours total of work a day, 49 a week, 210 a month and yearly a whopping 2555 if we don’t count days off, holidays, and other various obligations.
The monthly log serves similar goals to the yearly but in more detail and focus. The free space on the right are focus points of the month, this influences weekly planning and goals. This might also influence topics of the week. To make, write the numbers of each day of the month. Then the first letter, or in my case the first three of the days the numbers fall under.
My notebook is small and all this should usually take up only one page, but it didn’t. On yours perhaps the other page should serve as goals, protects, etc that aren’t currently set up and need a date. Or in my case I’ve chosen Superhero Powers, where the whole month is dedicated to a different type of superhero power which I will explore all week and will influence my weekly topic.
And finally our weekly page. Seven equally sized boxes with around 5 task spots per day. In the upper right corner (( this is actually inverted to serve my purposes )) We have a weekly quote of encouragement, a week counter to show how far I’ve come, and a topic of the week which is just like it sounds.
So there we have it! Please feel free to ask questions and throw ideas out there, and if you’re considering making one I’d love to hear about it. Unsure if you want one? As long as you have a spare notebook that isn’t going to be doing anything for you for a while I’d still recommend making one. Just making one gives you a lot of insight and if nothing else you can put very little detail in it and augment it to when and if you decide to put it to use.
This looks pretty comprehensive, I hope you can post an update of the work flow in about a month. I’d like to see what you learn from implementing such a thorough system.
I’d consider trying it out myself, but am going to wait for the new year to start. Still looking for a nicely bound book.