7 Bonus Bullet Journal Lessons
You only need the basics to get started, but the handful of lessons I've learned over time have made my Bullet Journal experience even better. Maybe they'll help yours, too. And if you're still looking for ideas, check out the free cheat sheets you can download at the bottom of this post!
1. Write slower.
The faster I write, the more likely I'll need a translator later. Messy handwriting makes my Bullet Journal feel cluttered and rushed, and since the main reason I use one is to make my life feel less cluttered and rushed, taking the extra seconds (literally, it's just seconds) to write a little neater pays huge dividends.
2. Write bigger.
I flip more than I use the Index, so having bold headings not only makes things easier to find but prettier to look at. Even black pen looks better on the page when there's variation. Check out the comparison; I prefer the right side.
3. Weekly task lists are better.
The day is too empty, and the month is too long. Looking at my life week by week is the best way to organize my brain. I can brain dump on one page and not have to designate which day gets which task; it all lands in the same weekly pool, and I do it when my kids let me hashtag never.
4. Leave it open.
I enjoy my Bullet Journal more when I use it to log my day rather than just mark off tasks. I write funny things my kids say, books I finish, or a quote I hear on a podcast, but it's tough to do that quickly when I can't find my journal. Ever since I started leaving it open on my counter with a pen waiting, I write more and have a more detailed log to revisit.
5. Use stickers, sometimes stamps.
Your Bullet Journal can be plain and still work perfectly despite what the Internet says. However, I do love a pretty page. I learned my lesson to not depend on my calligraphy skills to enhance my Bullet Journal, but stickers have been shockingly fun. I use modern alphabet stickers to title pages, and I have a selection of shapes and arrows to add interest without requiring an art degree. And I do sometimes use washi tape but only when I'm creating the initial page. No artistic flairs are required to maintain information, only my slower handwriting. Most of us have little art supplies lying around; why not use them?
6. Have a Bullet Journal box.
If you're happy with a simple pen, skip this one, but if you like the idea of making pages slightly pretty without a ton of work, have a box. Gather your stickers, colored pens, washi tape, and anything that you might use to enhance pages, and place them in a little bag or box. It's not out every day; in fact, seeing it every day will probably do more harm than good. I pull out my box when I'm setting up the month or something equally involved. The box isn't for quick logging, only for intentional journaling.
7. Don't ignore a better way.
Just because you have a Bullet Journal doesn't mean everything should go in it. I have a short list of things that go elsewhere (meal plans, brainstorming notes), and recently I added my TBR (to be read) list of books. There are dozens of adorable ways to log books in your Bullet Journal, but recently I've found that using an online list app called Trello is my absolute favorite way to keep track of my reading. Even though there are great ways to do it in the Bullet Journal, for me, Trello is better and I shouldn't ignore it. The same might be true of you for all kinds of information.