By Rachel King
It can be difficult to juggle classes, RSOs, a job and friends, among any other activities you may have on your plate. You think you can handle it at first, but as the year progresses you may find yourself realizing at 8 p.m. that you have an assignment due that night at 11:59 and it’s going to take at least three hours to do it. Times like these may have you thinking about how great it would be to have a bullet journal – and if you haven’t thought this, then you may be in ever more need. Luckily for you, there’s no time like the present to get into the habit of bullet journaling, and I have just the help you need to get started.
1.) Buy a bound notebook with a design that appeals to you.
Getting an aesthetically pleasing notebook will motivate you to write in it every day because you’ll want to take it out just to look at it, keeping you on track with your writing. I would not recommend spiral notebooks because these fall apart easily, and if your journal falls apart, you’ll be discouraged from documenting your plans.
2.) Carry it with you everywhere.
Most of the time, plans will be made outside of your home. If you don’t have your journal with you to immediately jot down the deadline of a paper or the date of a meeting, you may very well forget about those commitments until the last minute. Bringing your journal ensures that you’ll never turn in an assignment late or accidentally miss an event again.
3.) Determine how to organize the pages.
You have a lot of freedom here. You can label the top of each page with each day as you progress through the year, or simply write your short and long-term goals on each page and focus on accomplishing those. Another possibility is to have a week’s worth of activities on each page (for this one it helps to have larger pages). Any way you choose to do it, you hold yourself accountable for every additional task that arise, as well as for past tasks that you have yet to complete.
4.) Write down everything.
Every time you learn about an activity you have to do or may be interested in, record it in your journal. This will ensure it’s in the forefront of your brain rather than being edged out by something less important.
Though you should write down everything that needs to get done, try putting your tasks in order. Start with what needs to be completed urgently, working your way down to things that can be done later. This can be hard since you’re often writing down things as they come up, so make sure to leave room on the left margin of the page for numbering each line in order of importance.
6.) Cross off finished tasks.
It can be so overwhelming to see everything you have to complete each day. That’s why the most satisfying feeling is crossing off an activity each time you finish one. This simple visual can help lift the burden off your shoulders and encourage you to accomplish more tasks. Also, this tactic helps you see what still needs to get done, keeping you up-to-date with pressing matters.
7.) Be creative!
Don’t feel like your journal has to be boring. If you keep it colorful with miniature sketches here and there, you will want to keep filling the pages with new tasks. The myriad of ways you can express yourself is very therapeutic.
With these tips under your belt, you’re ready to begin your own bullet journal! The newly organized you will surely inspire all your friends to do the same.