In just the past few years, dozens of blogs regarding bullet journaling have surfaced. These journals serve as planners, personal goalkeepers, finance managers, and just as a fun hobby. However, I found that when I tried bullet journaling, it was everything but a fun hobby for me.
Bullet journaling, or bujo'ing for short, is described by Vogue as "KonMari for your racing thoughts." The creator of the bullet journaling method, Ryder Carroll from Brooklyn, NY, was diagnosed with learning disabilities at a young age, and in return, he found new ways to operate in his daily life.
Carroll says that the bullet journaling method is truly about "the art of intentional living". While Carroll only intended to make the lives of others easier with his methodical life planning skills, he introduced a new hobby to thousands of people. Youtubers dedicate channels to making tutorials for new bullet journal spreads, surely to be the most effective way to organize your future. Bloggers and social media influencers don't hesitate to show their subscribers their monthly plans if it means they can show off their best bullet journal entry.
I loved browsing Instagram and Tumblr accounts dedicated to bullet journaling. They were just so aesthetically pleasing and they really seemed to help people in their daily lives. I saw colorful and creative mood trackers, calorie counters, and activity logs. I decided to set out on a life-changing bullet journaling journey. But for me, bullet journaling was life-changing in all the wrong ways.
I purchased a dotted notebook, rather than a lined one, and a package of colored pens, as well as a plethora of stickers at Hobby Lobby. I sectioned off pages of the notebook to be dedicated to my senior year, to my friends, and to keep track of how much I spent. I also had a half page labeled for every day where I would write about my day and rate my overall mood on a scale from 1 to 10. Weeks passed as I filled my whole journal with photos and memories but every time I flipped through it, I was so upset.
Eventually, I realized that I only ever focused on the bad parts of my day, causing me to believe that my whole day was bad when in reality, it really was just a bad moment. I realize that it seemed like anything could cause me to believe my day was a 4 or a 5 when it really could've been a 7 or an 8. Once I noticed how much bullet journaling was actually hurting my moods and my self-esteem, I quit. But I wanted some other way to keep my schedule other than just on my phone's calendar.
So, I went to TJMaxx and bought a simple monthly planner. I stopped rating my days and tracking my water intake. I just wrote down what I needed to get done and where I needed to be. When I stopped thinking about how things were going and started thinking about where I'm headed, everything was so much easier. I was able to only focus on the future rather than dwell on what has already happened. Trends aren't for everyone, and even though not partaking in one may leave you feeling left out, it's worth it if it makes you a better you.