Bullet Journaling Resources
Rewriting is part of the system. It’s a feature that — after a few pages of daily logs or when moving to a new month — you copy over open tasks into a new place. That’s done so that you have to explicitly say “this is still important to me.”
Reflection is important. I remember back when I was deeper into David Allen’s Getting Things Done methodology that every message board would have posts about “how do I do this without the Weekly Reflection?” And the truth is you can’t. Not in any system.
There’s no system of managing work, either for personal use or teams, that works like clockwork without taking a step back and looking for things that were missed or bits that need correcting.
Additionally, reflection is part of making the journaling a habit, which means that I can keep using it after the novelty has worn off.
I’ve added a Kanban board spread to visualize creative projects that take sustained work. My goal in having them is to acknowledge when I’ve decided to work on things, and guide me to finish what I’ve started before adding too much more.
The left-hand page has Backlog, Preparing, In Progress, and Done sections. They can fit easily in two columns because we don’t want much room for Preparing and In Progress.
The tape is Kitta washi tape strips and I’m using the different colors for different types of projects (crochet, website, fanfic, &c.)
On the right-hand page I stuck some blank strips so I can just write on them and move them rather than digging up the little pack. Though now I need to find fountain pen–friendly washi tape… I had to use a Uniball One to write on these.
I like to mess around with pens. I’ve tried different gel pens (see: my favorite gel pens) and I’m also playing around with fountain pens. I’ve gone back-and-forth between using color underlines or highlighters for emphasis.
When I set up my next journal, which should last for several months, I’m resolving to stick with each pen choice at least for a spread of Daily Logs. The consistency will be more aesthetically pleasing and it will force me to be more deliberate with my choices.
I find myself going in circles trying out different pens and inks and brands and styles. It’s gotten worse now that I’m trying fountain pens and all of their inks.
It’s worth acknowledging that changing up the format can help make using the journal fresh (important for ADHD brain), so I need to balance that advantage but not spend the time re-evaluating my pen choices 4 times a day.
(BTW as of December I am currently consistently using Noodler’s El Lawrence in my journal for text, and varying the different colors for date and page headings.)
I started by using the pocket-sized Field Notes books using some of the strategies from How to Use a Pocket Journal with a Bullet Journal. It was appealing to me to have a notebook that would fit in my back pocket.
The downside is that they don’t have very much space, so I didn’t want to be migrating every month or two, because there are collections that I’d want to last longer.
I switched to a larger Field Notes book because it was thin and could easily slip into my shoulder bag, but would have more space for collections. Unfortunately the book I picked had some missing pages, so it’s only lasting me the month of November.
To suppliment it, I did start using the official Bullet Journal iOS app purely to handle the “logging on the go” piece that I lost when my journal was no longer pocket-sized. I like that the notes you make in it disapper after 72 hours, so it’s very specifically for capturing something that you then copy into a notebook later.
My December 2021–onward notebook is a Lemome with a gorgeous cork cover. I’m perfectly happy to make my own page numbers and index so I’m not missing the Leuchtturms that I use for RPGs.
The paper seems okay… it’s absorbant enough that Noodler’s Heart of Darkness—which I was going to use—feathers some, but El Lawrence looks and behaves great. I don’t expect that I’ll need the perforations on the pages, though, so they’re just kind of annoying.
Bullet Journaling and ADHD
Jessica from How to ADHD had a great conversation with Bullet Journal inventor Ryder Carroll, who talked about how the bullet journal techniques came out of his coping strategies for his ADHD.
How to ADHD has two other bullet journaling videos I found helpful: Why the Bullet Journal is the Best Planner for ADHD Brains and How to Create a Bullet Journal + Top 10 Tips
I haven’t tried the Rolling Weekly collection in one of my journals yet but I love both the day-of-the-week dot columns on the task list and the faux Dutch doors spread that, over the 8 columns of two back-to-back spreads, keeps one column always visible.