I spent some time yesterday with my new Bullet Journal and got my beginning spreads (two pages together) started. I’m really happy with my new notebook, a Leuchtturm1917. I’m loving the dot grid paper. I’ve spent the last few months gathering ideas for what I want and need in a planner and now that I’ve started putting it all down on paper I feel like this might actually be a planner that I stick with for more than a few months. I’ve already done a few months worth of practice, trial-and-error, and such. Without further ado, here is my start for the new year:
Here’s my Index, as it stands now. You’ll notice that a few pages are missing…I made big enough mistakes that I removed two pages. For regular lists and daily pages, I wouldn’t mind errors, but these are the pages I wanted to take time with and will refer to throughout the year.
I started with Future Planning, a way for me to keep track of things pretty far in advance. My Year-at-a-Glance is one of my least favorite pages thus far, but hey, it gets the job done! I can use it as a reminder of where I started and how I started the year (without a lot of confidence and on a bit of shaky ground).
My next section of pages is for monthly long-range planning. Things I know about well ahead of time go here, either on the “professional” side or the “personal” side of the page. I don’t usually set up my monthly
calendars until a week (or less) before the month starts, so this section gives me a place to keep track of things until I’m
ready to start that month.
Next up is my Birthdays Page and my Big Goals Page (see below). The Birthdays Page is fairly self explanatory. The Goals Page is a list of the seven big goals/areas of focus for me for this year. There is an umbrella heading, like “House & Home”, followed by what that umbrella covers. Along with each area is an arrow going across the page. It’s an arrow because it’s infinite; there’s always room for continued learning, growth, and improvement. I shaded in the arrows based on where I feel I’m starting the year for each area of focus. Obviously, there are some areas I really want to work on in the coming year, ::coughcough:: Career and Financial ::coughcough::. I left myself room in case something comes up and because I don’t believe in making up more just to fill in blank space.
Here comes my first “Collection”, a set of pages that go together in some way. This Collection is full of Handy Lists. I’ll let the pictures and captions speak for themselves. 🙂
Now we’re into the meat and potatoes of my bullet journal, the hardworking pages that are less beautiful and more functional, less about inspiration and more about keeping my butt in gear on a daily basis. Here is the beginning of my January section, starting with my monthly overview. This is where I keep track of all the stuff for the month. That means looking back at my long range monthly page and copying things over (which feels redundant in January, but is really necessary by about April…), checking for birthdays, adding in the stuff that is just a part of life (karate, wrestling, recycling, mom’s night out, snake feeding, etc.), and then adding things that might have come up since then. I get the monthly volunteer schedule for my son’s kindergarten about a month in advance, so it’s not usually in my long range plan. Because the boxes are smallish, I use a key for the regularly occurring stuff. I start the week on Monday, because we have (in the past) had a family meeting on Sundays to get ourselves all on the same page for the week ahead and it seems to work better for my brain. The last column is called “Rate the Week” and it’s a place where I can reflect on the week and note how it went and what I want to work on next week.
The other half of the spread is my January Habit Tracker. I have a grid set up with dates on one axis and habits on the other. After taking the photo, I did go back and add “3x per week” to the Blog habit and “Sunday-Thursday” to the Lights Out By 11PM habit. These aren’t necessarily easy habits (or else I wouldn’t need to track them), but I do want them to be somewhat realistic.
The last thing before my daily pages is my Week-at-a-Glance. I know it seems redundant, but it helps be remember all the things. As the week is in progress, this is where I add any new tasks, events, or appointments that get scheduled. As you can see in the corner, I started my daily page for Monday, but I won’t finish setting it up until Sunday evening. I don’t do Daily Pages for the weekends, so Monday’s will be my first Daily for 2016!
So that’s where I’m starting for the new year. I feel good, centered and focused, as I wrap up my long weekend and prepare to get back to our regularly scheduled programming.