A few months ago I would have implored that everyone starts a bullet journal. Immediately. It was the only way to live an organised life. I wrote not one, not two but three blog posts about bullet journalling and how I made it work for me. But almost three months after my last post aired, I don’t bullet journal anymore.
I started up again after coming back from the USA. I had a shiny new notebook I’d saved from a Papergang box and I filled up a few of my pages with a wish list, monthly log, yearly goals and a TV to watch yet. I started my June habit tracker. I had my Stabilo pens all ready to go, plenty of washi tape, a bunch of fresh pages ready for me to fill. But I just wasn’t filling it in, or bothering to write in to-do lists. I wasn’t fussed over what colour of pens I used or if I was tracking my habits.
My bullet journal felt restricting. It was stifling my creativity instead it of encouraging it. I felt restricted by my own regime of coloured pens, washi tape divisions and a page for each day. It just wasn’t working.
I bought a journal before the USA from a brand called Katie Loxton. It was black and has “marvellous memories” written on the front in gold font. I started using it as a journal in the USA but when I came home, it merged into a blog planner then a life planner then wish lists were being scribbled down and blog post ideas and to lists. It became my bullet journal without rules and an order. It was just my mind on a page. It was messy yes, but it was organised in its own way and its character was only improved by the scribbled out bits and messy scrawl.
A perfectionist’s skin might crawl looking at it but since using it, I’ve been writing down so much more and it has made such a difference. Blog ideas just keep coming and I love flicking through it looking for previous snatches of inspiration I’ve had. I love the mismatches of pen, scribbled out bits, random shopping lists to blog ideas. It is messy and unorganised but it is creative and unbinding.
I used to feel guilty if I didn’t fill in my bullet journal every day. I piled so much pressure on myself to fill it in neatly, to track my habits, my spending, what I eat. My mind was already a mess without me adding extra bits onto that. I stopped handing out rules to myself and just let myself relax in several ways, one of these ways which worked a treat for me was no more bullet journal.
I’ve now been using my messy journal for almost three months and I have seen such an improvement in myself over this time. Obviously it isn’t all down to giving up a bullet journal but having my little messy companion by my side is doing me wonders. I can write down whatever I want whenever I want, I can just unload mentally onto a page. I’m not suggesting everyone who adores their bullet journal should quit immediately. If it makes you tick, then keep at it. But for me, it wasn’t helping a single bit so I stopped. And stopping did help.
That was a v ramble-type post about me and a bullet journal which I’m sure no one is that arsed about but I wanted to get it off my chest and share why I gave up this Pinterest trend, because y’know, my world didn’t end when it did.
Do you bullet journal? What makes it work for you?