Everyone has a bullet journal story. A story about how they found out about bullet journaling, why they started, why they keep using it, and what they plan to do with it in the future.
Every person who uses a bullet journal has a story to tell on how they got started, here is mine.
Needing A Planner
When I first started blogging over on Mommy Thrives I was working 60 hours a week as a waitress and my schedule was insane. I was trying to write new posts for the blog, market that blog, work, raise a kid, and run all my normal errands.
I was hectic to say the least.
To top things all off I had a bad case of mom brain. I couldn’t remember what I was doing while I was in the middle of doing it. My thoughts were scattered and I couldn’t get control over them.
When I was in school and working I managed to keep track of my schedule easily by keeping a planner. I knew it was time to start using a planner again and I went on the search for a good planner to use.
Finding The Right Planner For The Right Price
Suddenly I realized, decent planners that easily fit into a purse but have loads of extra space and pages for necessary lists were expensive. I couldn’t find a planner I liked that wasn’t going to cost me a bunch of money.
Not to mention I was starting this planner in March and the sale prices hadn’t kicked in yet.
So I did a google search on creating your own planner. This would be more cost effective and allow me to cater it to exactly what I needed.
Finding Bullet Journaling
This is when I found out about bullet journaling. It was so simple, so easy, and oh so pretty.
As an artist I was giddy with the idea of being creative in a bullet journal and as a planner I loved how custom planning could save my schedule. It was on.
I immediately started researching different layouts, spreads, ideas, collections, and finding inspiration for my own journal. Now all I needed was to find the right journal for the job.
My Very First Bullet Journal
The right journal was a composition notebook with college ruled lines. I immediately started keeping a daily log, creating collections, and using the notebook to brain dump all of my ideas.
It still fit into my abnormally large mom purse and was perfect for keeping my mind on track. At this point I wasn’t getting super creative with my journal. The goal was just to get into the habit of using my journal.
That changed when I moved up to a new type of journal. I found a notebook like this one that had three sections with different types of papers in each section. With Lined, dotted, and plain paper I could track my personal, work related, and business related goals and tasks.
It was in this journal that I started getting a bit more creative. The journal didn’t last long though I was quickly becoming obsessed with the bullet journal and wanted to expand into something more.
Getting A Real Journal
My first real bullet journal was the Essentials dot grid bullet journal. It worked really well for me and I was finally starting to get creative. My first official and creative month of bullet journaling was in September 2018.
I started tracking more, using weekly spreads, journaling, and planning my entire life.
In October I got even more creative with my very first theme. I decided I would do a Nightmare before Christmas theme and went all out with my creative side.
After that month I upgraded my journal again to the Scribbles That Matter bullet journal. This journal started with collections on all sorts of different things. The first month in this journal started with a Harry Potter theme.
This is still one of my most favorite themes and I have to fight the urge to do it every single month just so I don’t get burnt out from it. Additionally, there are other things I like and themes I want to try.
Where I Am Now
While the way I journal has changed over the last year or so there is one thing I can say for sure. The bullet journal has been a lifesaver for me.
I practice more hand lettering now and use that as my primary decorating tool. I switched from a weekly spread to a daily spread in order to better track and plan each day.
I’m still switch up my theme each month but I find myself leaning towards more minimal spreads. Part of this is due to a busy schedule the other part is that I really love the clean and sleek look of a minimalist spread.
I hope to get more creative in the future and use some of my artist skills in watercolor. One thing I have learned is if you are going to experiment with different artistic styles it’s helpful to get an artists notebook like this and learn from those who have gone before you.
If there is one thing I have learned about bullet journaling it’s that the bullet journal can be a planner, journal, tracker, and a creative outlet. While people purely use it for planning or purely use it for creative purposes you can use it for what works for you.
Letting my journal be a creative outlet is essential for me. I used to paint often and got away from it due to lack of time and lack of space to store all the paintings.
Using my bullet journal as a creative outlet helps to reduce stress, get focused, and get motivated. This simple journal provides so much for me on a daily basis it’s no wonder I genuinely enjoy doing it.
I’ve always loved beautiful calligraphy and hand lettered quotes. When I started bullet journaling I started practicing my hand lettering too.
I was a waitress for several years and my hand writing suffered a lot from it. When I started practicing my hand lettering in my bullet journal it sucked, hard. As I continued to practice it got better and better.
While not yet where I’d like for it to be and as I am learning all the new techniques to hand lettering, I am noticing a major difference in where I started and where I am now.
The Future For Me And Bullet Journaling
Bullet Journaling is something I plan to do for a long time. I will save these journals and in the future look back on them and remember my life. I will pass them on to my son and maybe he will learn something from me as he raises his kids.
In the immediate use the bullet journal provides a nice way for you to track, plan, and record your day. In the future the bullet journal provides you with memories of your life. Things you can look back on, hopefully with joy.
When did you start bullet journaling and how has it changed for you? Let me know in the comments below. Follow me on Pinterest for more like this and pin it to your favorite bullet journal boards.