Bullet Journaling Isn't A One-Stop Solution For A Disorganized Life
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Bullet Journaling Isn't A One-Stop Solution For A Disorganized Life

While it is fun and fulfilling to set up a bullet journal and get organized, having a pretty bullet journal will only get you so far if you can't complete what's on the sheet.

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Bullet Journaling Isn't A One-Stop Solution For A Disorganized Life

Time management and scheduling are kind of a nightmare for me. I've gotten by pretty well in school but, it's been by the skin of teeth some days. To help me in this area of my life, I've started bullet journaling (it's a digital one but it functions like the traditional one). I can definitely say it's a useful tool and anyone who struggles like I do with scheduling and time management would benefit from giving it a whirl. However, the degree to which it can help people depends on what their struggles are.

But first, the basics of what a bullet journal actually is...

The basics idea behind bullet journaling is chunking. Chunking involves taking large bits of information and breaking them down into digestible and easy to remember bits (i.e: A phone number. It's not a long string of numbers but rather a collection of groups of numbers). In the traditional bullet journal set up, you have an index, a future log, a monthly and weekly log, a daily log and a set of collections.

Index

The index is just your usual book index. It's there to help you find everything you wrote downing your journal so you don't have to go crazy searching for it later.

Future log

The future log is where you dump all the tasks or events you don't want to think about yet. Have a dentist appointment coming up in three months? Write it in your future log under the corresponding month and you don't have to worry about remembering it anymore.

Monthly, weekly, daily log and collections

The weekly, monthly and daily logs are to help you plan what you need to get done that month. The monthly log includes a calendar where you put big tasks you have that month. The weekly log is where you break down your monthly tasks and add the more detailed tasks you want to do that week. The daily log is where you break down your monthly and weekly tasks even more by making an easy to follow to-do list to help guide your day.

Collections are anything that doesn't have to do with time management. They can be mood trackers, habit trackers, sleep logs, anything. Write them whenever inspiration strikes and you can easily come back and find them later thanks to your index.

* * *

As you can see, bullet journals can be a very helpful and fun organizational tool. But, how much will it help YOU?

Short answer: It depends on what you struggle with.

For people who struggle with just the chunking aspect of scheduling, this will be a Godsend. It's an agenda on steroids. Your entire month (and future months if you look in the future log) are at your fingertips. Having a month, weekly and daily view of your life can be so helpful in keeping life from getting too overwhelming. Additionally, unlike traditional agendas and calendars (including Google and other online calendars) it gives you a chance to include collections that are important to you. Want to track your food? With a collection, you can do that. In brief, this is the perfect solution for anyone who gets overwhelmed by tasks and needs things broken down in a very systematic way.

For those of us who struggle with procrastination or other productivity killers, unless the cause of them is being overwhelmed and needing to chunk your schedule into more bite-sized bits, this will only help you so much. I can personally attest to this. Setting up my bullet journal and seeing all my tasks laid out in a simple and efficient way was very calming. However, I still was not able to complete everything on my list EVEN THOUGH I had time. The problem is, I'm a very bad procrastinator and until I tackle that issues, no amount of bullet journaling will help with that.

While it is fun and fulfilling to set up a bullet journal and get organized, having a pretty bullet journal will only get you so far if you can't complete what's on the sheet. It's one thing to be organized but it's quite another to be productive.

The bullet journal may not be a panacea for all scheduling and time management woes, but it's certainly a good start and a great way to motivate yourself to face your productivity demons.

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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