Bullet Journaling For Work, School and Everyday Life: A Comprehensive Guide
This article was written by The Zillennial Zine’s fall editorial intern Celeste MacMurray. Find her on Instagram at @clsmsanchezx. If you would like to share an article with The Zillennial, send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
I started bullet journaling in high school as a junior desperately trying to get myself in order for senior year and all the responsibilities awaiting me. I need to apply to college, which in turn required me to do what felt like a hundred other tasks, and I needed some way to keep track of this all. I found store bought planners to be boring and hard to keep up with, and I hated their lack of flexibility. I couldn’t customize the pages, add my own unique spreads or add extra pages I may need for the month. It was all uniform with everything already drawn out for me.
This is why I found myself so intrigued by bullet journaling. Either done in a dot-grid or square-grid journal, bullet journaling is done according to your will and your desires. You draw everything out yourself and create your own spreads and themes to fit your life and your favorite aesthetics.
Getting into bullet journaling can be confusing at first, because when you scroll through Pinterest and watch YouTube videos, each creator is just so put together with the utmost perfect spreads. It can feel a little discouraging at times, especially if you’re like me and can’t draw, but that’s where the experimentation aspect of bullet journaling comes in. I can’t draw at all, but I do love to use stickers, washi tape and any discarded pieces of paper to create decorations in my margins or background. When it comes to bullet journaling, you get to dictate your style, so don’t feel pressured to make it look like the spreads you see all over social media. You can be as messy or as neat and precise as you’d like.
Page Layout Ideas
Bullet journaling can be used to track a number of things. Bullet journaling for work life, appointments and due dates, school events and your important assignments, too. You can even use a bullet journal to track health-related items, such as your menstrual cycle and any habits you might be trying to build. This can include things like working out more, drinking more water or anything else you’d like to do to improve your life.
A good way to begin tracking things like this is by creating a monthly overview spread that’ll help you get a good grip on any important dates coming up. The best part of this is that you get to design it according to your style.
Another spread I’d recommend is a habit tracker to keep track of things in your daily life to see how they add up monthly. This way you can know exactly how often you do these tasks and you can work on completing them more regularly if that’s your goal.
As a stressed college student, it’s sometimes a struggle keeping track of everything due and whatever quizzes, tests or projects you have coming up. This is why something like a semester log can be useful as you keep it all in one place to give you a bird’s eye view of the months to come. Or, you could also utilize a weekly spread to help you keep track of your day to day life.
While you may have some ideas on what you want to do for your bullet journal and how you want it to look, you might be unsure about what kind of supplies you should use. If that’s the case, you’ve come to the right place.
Finding A Journal
There is a wide variety of places you can purchase a bullet journal from. Amazon, Michael’s or even from small businesses online or local stationary stores in your city. There is no set place that you have to buy a journal from, but if you’re in the search, here are some recommendations. You can find such a unique landscape of journals to choose from—some journals have black pages, or metallic foil along their edges, and some journals even have extra thick papers to avoid your materials bleeding through. If you’re someone who likes to use watercolor, there are journals whose pages are made extra thick with this in mind.
Pens And Markers Galore
You can use any type of pen or marker you prefer, because a bullet journal is dictated by your rules. Regular ink pens, glitter pens, white ink pens, highlighters, calligraphy pens—you can use whatever you like. Personally, I like to use regular black pens that aren’t gel as I find they smear easily and highlighters for pops of color. The Zebra Pen Mildliners are some I’d personally swear by as I’ve used them for years. They’re double-tipped with vibrant colors and very long lasting. I have never used any Muji brand pens myself, but I have friends who use them religiously and love them more than any other brand.
As someone who cannot draw but loves little accent details, washi tape is a lifesaver. I have bought many kinds over the years; from plain colors to Sanrio characters to flower-themed ones, I love the versatility they offer. I can use the tape as a border around my calendar, or to create a background behind the stickers I’m using. Washi tape can definitely function as a mood maker for your spreads.
A sure fire way to spice up any bullet journal spread is by adding stickers. They immediately draw your attention and work wonders at complimenting the rest of your spread nicely. Whether you like more aesthetic style stickers or cutesy ones, you can find stickers to fit your niche on different sites online. Here are just a few examples of what you can find on Amazon alone.
Are you new to bullet journaling or are you a pro that can offer us your own personal insight? Do you use bullet journaling for work, school or life? Let us know down below!