Bullet Journalling anyone?

I thought I might talk a little bit about my bullet journal, if that's ok?

I know not everyone will be interested in this, so I can understand if you want to pass this one by, but I did get a few questions about it when I posted a bujo* spread on Insta the other day so I thought a little post wouldn't do any harm.

*The shortened version of 'bullet journal' - everything 
sounds better when it has a compound word, right?

If you're not too sure what this bullet journalling lark is all about btw, here's a couple of useful links that will get you up to speed...

The official site and to be honest, a bit dry and full of jargon.

I found this explanation on Buzz Feed much more useful, but be warned there is the odd swear.

Personally, I'm pretty much a paid up member of using technology to organise my life,  I use my Mac calendar for the day to day scheduling.  I can keep the kid's stuff on there and hubs is all synced into it too, so it works pretty well.  When it comes to digital to-do lists I'm a huge fan of Onmifocus.  It's quite a professional bit of kit, so kind of pricy and it can get complicated (if you want it to) but I love and adore it.  My life is in that thing, I don't know what I'm doing without it.

So, as much as I enjoy notebooks and pens and all those adorable bits of stationary paraphernalia and I wish I was a Filofax or Planner kind of girl, I've never found the format of pages in those systems really work for me that well.

But that's were bullet journalling comes in.  Because, as well as my technological solutions work for me, there are things that don't fit neatly into a calendar or on a to-do list.  Like keeping track of more general things like 'make more time for sewing this year', or if I actually do manage to exercise at least 4 days a week and keep it up!

Because a bullet journal can be whatever you want it to be, and you get to play with stationary, it really appeals to me.  Especially the playing with stationary, any excuse to have a genuine use for felt-tips again is good with me!  I started mine last year and I'll confess, I didn't keep it up.  Things dwindled around April/May kind of time and never got re-started.  However, here we are in a brand new year with a whole new wealth of possibilities, so I am trying again.

I had some fun over the Christmas/New Year break, setting up my bujo and planning and playing with new spreads for this year and this month.   I don't bother with the weekly ones, I don't have a use for those, but I do like the way I can note down all sorts of ideas and plans and although a bujo absolutely doesn't have to be about brush lettering, doodles and colouring in, personally I love that about it.

First of all, my 'yearly spreads'.

I like to set myself some goals (or vague intentions at least), decide on my 'word of the year' and keep track of a few targets and things through out the year, so I set these up first.

Taking a bit more care of myself is a focus for this year.  Getting my eating and exercise back to a healthier place is something I've been neglecting for too long and quite frankly I'm looking forward to fitting back into my clothes again.  Each pound lost means I can colour in another little box, what more motivation could I need?  ;)

I've also noted a few key milestones along the way, as it helps to have mini targets to work towards along the way and I can even give myself little rewards as I hit them.

I've also got a page of ideas to get me motivated on those 'not so good' days.  Mostly fairly obvious stuff but for me, all too easy to forget when the doom and gloom strikes...

Then a couple of other things I fancied keeping track of this year, just for fun really...

For some reason I love knowing the number of yards I crochet or knit up during a year.  I've always done it, but last year I started tracking how much I brought in too.  (Out of control stash anyone?)  This year I wanted to do the same, so these little bars will get filled up as the yarn ebbs in and out of my stash!

And then a few blogging and podcasting goals.  I'm usually pretty good with these sorts of things, but I do like the feeling of accomplishment at the end of the year!

Then, for each month.

Not especially photo worthy, but so far I've made a little note of any important dates for the month ahead and I've got a little list of things to focus on this month.  The idea is that I can look back at the 'yearly goals' and then plan them in at various points throughout the year.

One of my favourite bujo ideas is the 'monthly tracker'.  You can use it to monitor anything you like, from eating your 5 a day, doing your yoga stretches, household chores, keeping up with revision, learning an instrument.  The possibilities are endless...

Lastly, because as much as I can plan and write lists of things to do, sometimes life just happens and those things don't get done.  I do struggle with this a bit and get frustrated because I feel I haven't accomplished anything at all.  But often that's not really the case.  I probably still did lots, just not necessarily the things I've planned.

So I made a page for a 'done' list, to note down what I did do this month.  The to-do list may look a little light on ticks sometimes, but this page will help remind me that doesn't mean I didn't achieve anything.

Well, this has turned into a longer post than I ever imagined, so I shall leave it there.  But if you are already bujo fan, I'd love to hear how you use yours and what your favourite or most useful spreads are.  I love seeing and hearing what other people do!

And, if you fancy diving down the bullet journalling rabbit hole, here are just a few places to start finding inspiration...

Bullet Journal (Pinterest)
#bulletjournal (Instagram)
Top Bullet Journal Ideas
Bullet Journal Spreads
Monthly Tracker Ideas
Bullet Journal Supplies
Brush Lettering

Oh, btw, the bullet journal 'tools of the trade' (stationary/pens/etc) and the brush lettering thing is probably a whole other post of it's own.  If anyone is interested, I can share if you you'd like?

S x





  1. Inspiring! Your brush lettering is very lovely. I enjoy your presentation style and would enjoy your take on your tools.
    I am using my bujo for the extra things: trackers, craft project log mostly. I've not been particularly colorful nor artsy. I'm having a hard time sitting still long enough to make a tracker grid, but I think I would benefit from taking the time to introduce a little creativity.
    Thank you for sharing your creative life with the community.

  2. Love your post on 'Bullet Journalling'. Really inspiring. May have to give it a try. My problem is that I set ridiculous goals for myself and get frustrated if they don't go to plan especially when it comes to cleaning the house each week. Lol I would love a post on your pens and brushwork.x

    1. Yes, I know what you mean. It's not always easy to set 'achievable goals' is it? I try to take it easy on myself and go for something I think I will manage and then if I find it too easy, try something more challenging next time. Motivation and pushing ourselves is good, but we have to be kind to ourselves too I think!

      S x

  3. Hello that's lovely to hear about how you go about using your bullet journal. I found it really interesting. This year I've decided to start a journal mainly to write down sayings and verses but also to include what I'm reading and making so all in all a bit of everything. I have bought some lovely pens and stickers to use in it, I'm just waiting for my journal book to be delivered. I would love to hear about your pens etc that you will be using. Thank you so much for sharing and I love reading your blog also watching your podcasts. Love Marion Pinklady558 xxx

  4. I started this new year with a fresh new Leuchtturm in the same colour as yours. In April last year I've started with this BuJo thing and it took a while 'til I found my way, but now I'm totally in.
    I really like your spreads and I'd like to see more :)

    Greetings from germany

  5. That was actually the most useful and informative stuff I've read on bullet journaling I've read. I'm nearly persuaded. I have to be careful as although I am very disorganised as well as unproductive (lazy), I actually feel weird if I do 'too much' stuff as it makes me feel overwhelmed, which doesn't make me feel good about doing stuff at all. I start wondering on the point of what I have done and often there isn't one and then I wonder if it wasn't just busywork.

    I do make lists,as I am so very forgetful but nothing else seems to allow for the fact I am all over the place.The journals, planners etc that you buy never seem to have anything in common with me. So I just dump things in note books which get filled with anything and everything. They work somewhat, except I don't know where anything is in them. A 'common place book' I think it's called. Mine has all sorts of snippets I collect like quotes or websites etc., as well as important info like passwords and stuff to do. Perhaps I should get myself into better order and start a bullet journal.

    Would love to know your pens, felts tip etc and if they go through the page or not.

    Thanks for this great post, you are very motivational and hard working, not to mention a by-word for competency. I used to think things happened to people by 'magic', now I know better:)

  6. Great post, Sandra! I looked at bullet journalling a year or so ago, but it looked just too complicated for me (I must have looked at the official site). For years I've been using an A5 page-a-day diary as a planner, with my to do lists, appointments, expenditure, and more recently adding a few sentences about my day. It is always untidy, because I cross through the things I've done. But I've been finding that it doesn't do everything I need. I've been wanting to record books I've read, or want to read, track fitness progress, and write meal plans, and thought I'd have to have separate notebooks for these.Your post, and the link to the WTF post, which linked on to another post...has given me the answer! If I can actually figure out how to do it, it looks like a bullet journal can do everything I need all in one place! Amazing! Though I may just find I spend more time doing the journal than anything on the todo list! I look forward to reading about your pens etc. Thank you!

  7. Rally lovely post, thanks for sharing!

  8. Thank you Sandra, you have really inspired me (but then you always do!) There are a few areas in my life that need a bit more monitoring and organising.
    Whilst I won't 'buy' any stationary or the like as that is one area of my life that needs urgent attention, I will dig out bits I've got and have a go at the bullet journal. I like that you said it could be anything you want it to be.
    Be gone with writing lists on used envelopes!!! (although I like the re-cycling element of that)
    and anyway I just want to do come colouring in.....
    Sam xxx

  9. Ok so I just ordered a journal.

    I wanted the dotted pages!!! What can I say????

  10. I am so tempted by bullet journals! I've been investigating them on and off for a while now (I actually think it might have been a mention you made about them on your blog or instagram which alerted me to their existence in the first place! - so it probably was a year ago when you started your last one!)
    I haven't bitten the bullet (ha!) yet, but I get more and more tempted as time goes on. I loved this post and seeing how you use yours, so interesting and inspiring! It would be great if you shared more about your lettering and the tools you use.
    PS - laughing at Sam's comments about not buying stationery, then whoops she's ordered a bullet journal! :D xx

  11. I have no hope of being anywhere near organized enough to do this, but I must say golly, is it ever pretty! 😍😊😄 {Maybe next year...}

  12. This looks so beautiful! I'd really love to give it go too :)I can't resist pretty stationery either...it's even better than stationary ;) xAli

  13. This looks so beautiful, and your artwork is very inspiring! I'd love to give it go too. I love playing with pretty stationery...it's even better than stationary ;) xAli

  14. Hi Sandra this is a great post with so many ideas. I tried to start a bujo in 2017 and 2016 but never got to the end of Jan. My trouble is that I end up losing the notebook and writing in any that's handy and then I just don't know where I am. Mine is messy too so I love your lettering and the bunting page for blog post goals is brilliant. Thanks for so many ideas xxxx Kathryn xxx

  15. I love this Sandra! its fab and possibly where many of us are right now! I love how you have set out your goals without tying them in to dates! The other thing I do is cut and paste, old collage style, pictures of things, places and words that inspire me or i aspire to! Love all your ideas....enjoy your journalling, and the odd bit of crochet too of course! love Gail x

  16. @Michelle:

    You don't need to wait until next year. Just grab a notebook and a pen and give it a go! start with a cheap one so you don't mind when it looks messy, which is totally ok. Just try it out and after a few weeks or month you now what works for you and what doesn't.

    My first BuJo looks like...well...there are some pages I like...but I've found my style now and won't miss my little notebook for everything! (and I'm a little more organised and I can see what I've achieved)


  17. Are we all so unfocussed that we need tutorials to be creative? Another mini industry has just been created using the recommended journals, pens, stamps, etc.

    Come on people,,just jot it down..in one place...no one else is watching

  18. Love this! Waiting on a Etsy order to arrive and start one too. It would be more of a journal/where is my crochet/knitting stuff, but so looking forward to it! Bought me a LOT of stickers and washi 😜
    Would be nice to see what you use, and maybe some reviews?

  19. I started mine in may last year and am still going which was a surprise! I don't have a digital calendar so mine is my whole life! My favourite spreads are my monthly "good stuff" pages where i make a note of all the good stuff that happened. From big nights out to a funny comment from a friend or a good book... i love looking back on them and realising how full my life is

  20. This is such an inspiring post - I want to rush out and buy a notebook and brush pens right now! I would if we weren't on a red warning for snow... However, I think I may have a blank notebook hiding somewhere, do I shall make do with what I have and read up a bit more (thanks for the links!) before I dive in! You always write such inspiring posts and share such beautiful photos - how *do* you find the time for everything?! 🌸