How to Bullet Journal for the Minimalist

When I first introduced the Maisie Lane Co. Journal Collection to my friends and family, there were a few common questions/comments.

They were:

“What is a bullet Journal?”

“How do you bullet journal?”

“I wish I could keep a bullet journal, but I don’t have time.”

“I’m not creative enough for a bullet journal.”

Bullet journaling has become widespread across the globe and if you do a search on a social media platform like Instagram, you’ll find a plethora of beautiful and meticulously crafted journal pages, or, "spreads" as well call them. While I love how bullet journaling has evolved, the original intention was not for art, but to be a system of personal organization. 

Developed by Ryder Carroll, the Bullet Journal Method is meant to organize your schedule, reminders, to-do lists, and other organizational tasks into a notebook. 

For this blog post, I wanted to show you how the bullet journal method works and why you do have enough time and no, you don’t need to fill it with stickers and art (though, it’s so much fun to do so!). 


Step 1: Create Your Index

You will label the first two blank pages as your Index. This is how you’ll keep track of what’s on each page of your journal. 


Step 2: Create a Future Log

Title the next 2-4 pages as “Future Log” just as you did with the Index. Two pages for 6 months and 4 pages for a year. The next thing you’ll want to do is divide each page into three parts by drawing four horizontal lines from one page to the other (see below). Then, label each section as a month. 

This is probably the most complicated part of the whole system, and it still won’t take you very long. 

Quick Tip: In our journals, you’ll put a divider across dots 4, 15, 26 and 37.


Step 3: Monthly Log

Add the name of the month on the next two pages. 

First Page:

Vertically number the days of the month and the weekdays (abbreviated) next to each number. This is your calendar. 

If you hate having to number the days of the month, you can easily use our days of the week washi tape to do so quickly! You’ll just have to add the weekdays next to the numbers. 

Second Page:

This is your monthly task list. Simply create bullet points to write down everything you need to do or reminder for this month. You can flip back to this page frequently to see at-a-glance what you need to get done!

Days of the Week Washi Tape 

Step 4: Add Entries

The recommended way to add to your entries is with short, bulleted sentences. Each sentence is going to fit into one of three categories: 

  • Tasks (a dot)
  • Events (a circle)
  • Notes (a dash)

If you have a task that is extra important, you can highlight it or simply put a star next to it. 

As you complete tasks in your daily and monthly logs, mark them with an “x.”

 

Step 5: Repeat, Review and Migration

After you’ve gone through an entire month, the bullet journal method has one more part. 

First, you’ll set up your next Monthly Log. Then, you should look back at your previous month’s logs, both daily and monthly. Take a look at what you didn’t complete and ask yourself, “is this worth my time?” If it’s not, strike it out. If it is, turn the dot into a right arrow and copy it to your new monthly log.

If the incomplete task is something that isn’t due for a month or longer, turn it into a left arrow and go back to your Future Log. Mark these tasks in the months they are due. 

 

Step 6: Collections (optional)

If you want to organize your to-do’s and lists into something even more organized, you can create what are called “collections.” Simply turn to your next blank page, title it, and then index it. A collection could be something like “Books to Read This Month.”

Conclusion

Bullet journaling doesn’t have to be this overwhelming task and you shouldn’t feel stressed when you do it! What’s beautiful about it is that you can do whatever you want with it. If you’re an artist, create beautiful works of art in your journal. If you just need a quick way to organize your tasks, be simple. 

Our journals give you that freedom. With a 4mm dot-grid design and 160 gsm semi-coated white paper, you can do whatever you want. The semi-coated paper makes it smooth enough to glide with your fountain pen, brush pen, or marker, but it’s not too smooth where your ink will smudge or feather. And, 160 gsm means there won’t be any bleeding. 

Our personalization option also gives you another way to make the journal yours. Write your name, your social media handle, or even a fun quote. 

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