If you’re looking for info to get started with the bullet journal system, you have come to the right place! Welcome to the Bullet Journal 101 post. But be warned. Once you go BuJo, you won’t go back. I am a total newbie, so this is truly a post for people just learning about the method. If you’re wondering, ‘What is a bullet journal?’ or ‘What do I need to get started?’ or ‘Why would I even want to?’ This is the blog post for you.
Q: What is a Bullet Journal?
A: According to bulletjournal.com, “The Bullet Journal is a customizable and forgiving organization system. It can be your to-do list, sketchbook, notebook, and diary, but most likely, it will be all of the above. It will teach you to do more with less.”
Q: Do I need a certain notebook?
A: You don’t necessarily need a certain notebook but, I would recommend ordering a Leuchtturm 1917 Medium Dot Grid notebook from The Goulet Pen Company. You can order one on Amazon, but I’ve done both, and I actually received mine much faster from The Goulet Pen. And furthermore, along with my journal, they sent me a personalized note and a bookmark. Love! The Leuchtturm 1917 is the perfect size, paper weight and has dots to make drawing, sketching and planning much easier. Believe me, the dots make it so much easier to draw lines and correctly space when making grids, graphs, etc. But don’t let not having the correct journal prevent you from getting started. You can go ahead and use any type of notebook, but I think you would really enjoy the Leuchtturm.
Q: Don’t the pens bleed through?
A: As I’ve learned about the system and looked at pictures on Instagram and blogs, I’ve seen several different types of pens being used. I have been using the Tripulus Fineliner 0.3 mm pens (the 10 pack). I absolutely love them. I also really love Paper Mate pens. Even the thick tip Paper Mate pens do not bleed through. I am a Sharpie fan, but the only one I can use with my Bullet Journal is the Sharpie fine point.
A. What other materials are needed?
Q: I recommend carrying around a small ruler that can fit in your purse, bag or in the back pocket of your Bullet Journal (if you have a Leuchtturm 1917). You will be drawing lines for your grids and believe me, a ruler comes in handy. I also use tabs to keep up with pages I use constantly. That way, I don’t have to always refer to the index or memorize page numbers. You will also probably use colored pencils, regular pencils and Post-it notes.
Q: What does the system entail?
A: With the Bullet Journal system, you have the freedom to customize your notebook in any way you like so that it makes your life more systematic and organized. All journals have an index or table of contents to keep track of what is written on each page or series of pages. Many folks rely on a coding system, using a variety symbols and notations. Also, most Bullet Journals have daily, weekly and monthly grids. It may take you a couple of days, weeks or months to find your sweet spot with these, but you will find it! Below are several examples from my bullet journal.
As you see, I’m just getting started with my bullet journal. I plan to make as many tweaks, edits and adaptations until I find something that works for me.
If you would like to start this system, the first steps are to order the materials you need and brainstorm about ideas that will work for you and your life. You can also find a lot of information on Pinterest, through Google searches and searching on Instagram with the hashtag #bulletjournal or #bujo.
Good luck! I have extremely high hopes for this system and look forward to sharing my journey with you. Here’s to a more organized 2016!
P.S. Since writing this post, I’ve created a group board on Pinterest called Bullet Journal Collaborative. It’s very active with 100 contributors and a lot of great info. If you would like to collaborate on this group board, first follow the board then comment on this post with your Pinterest username so I can add you. I look forward to sharing ideas!