Rome — they say — was not built in a day. Nor will be my bullet journal.
I do not see a bullet journal as the sole single option for life planning and management. Its a great tool — but with some limits.
Specifically, for managing fixed, date-based events (including recurring ones), a calendar — in my case, the Google calendar — are perfect at scheduling and reminding me. The calendar is integrated with my smartphone so I have a calendar and alert system with me.
- Set-up my bullet journal (Ryder Carroll’s video)
- Tweak design e.g. page layouts, and methods e.g. system of bullets, to fit my needs and context
- Transfer my tasks from bits of paper, in-boxes and electronic lists (workflowy, in my case!) into the bullet journal
- Create collections of data/lists as needed
- Immediately enter any new items (tasks, ideas, etc.) into my bullet journal — as date-based or into master task list or a collection
- Regularly (at least daily) review my tasks lists and collections— migrate and delete as needed
Above all – keep it simple & workable!!
What not to do!
In tackling any project, I have learnt that you always try to bite off more than you can chew. A quick reminder to myself of what to avoid (these work for others, but are unlikely to be for me):
- Goal Setting. I am not goal-driven by nature; my inner life and happiness is driven by good relationships which emerge from my surroundings and work/life activities — not something which is “taskable”.
- Decorating. I admire the multi-colored, doodle-driven, washi-enhanced efforts of many journallers. Admire, but will not copy!
- Digitizing. I am not interested in hybrid systems so creating digital versions of what is a sensible way to manage life at a reasonable level is not something to do.
- Duplication. Daily life is a mixed-up combination of work, home, and personal activities and responsibilities — so having a single bullet journal makes lots of sense.
- Project Planning. Detailed project planning, with long lists of tasks and sub-tasks, plus schedules etc. is not something to tackle in a bullet journal; rather use it to capture brief notes and ideas as inputs the projects. Daily “do it now” tasks can be drawn from the project plan into the journal.
Its arrived — fresh out of the courier box!