Bullet journal

My 2019 Bullet journal evaluation: Which features will migrate to my 2020 journal

Most bullet journalers are entering or have already entered in the period of setting up a new bullet journal. I am also, but for me it is easy to start a new journal, as I use a Filofax Clipbook A5. In the end of the year I remove all pages from my clipbook and store them. I then add new pages.

In my previous blogpost, I answered the first question that was in my mind in starting a new bullet journal: What happens to the old bullet journals? And since this is by now solved, I can continue to the next one, which is: Which features of my current bullet journal I will continue having in my 2020 version? I split the features of my bullet journal in two big categories: the collections and the monthly/weekly/daily layout.

Collections – Trackers

About this time last year I went through the process of evaluating the collections I have been using in my previous bullet journals. I knew that I have been starting a lot of them and I tended to quit keeping them updated towards the middle of the year. Has that happened to you too?

So in my 2019 bullet journal I kept only collections that were not abandoned and created only a couple of new ones in subjects that I evaluated as really interesting for me, such as books. And guess what? It was an absolute success, as I did not abandon them this year either!

These are the collections – trackers that were so successful for me in 2019:

  • 2019 Roadmap
    This is one of the two not so minimalist pages in my bullet journal. I have already explained the idea behind it here. I absolutely love this short overview of my year!
My 2019 roadmap, as I transferred it to the notebook for safekeeping.
  • Movies and Series watched
    These two collections are of interest for both me and my husband. We watch several movies each year and a lot of series, as it has become so easy with Netflix. These trackers usually end up a bit messy, as I tend to complete them while watching tv, but I love them anyway 🙂
  • Books read tracking
    The Books read collection is the second not-so-minimalist page in my bullet journal. I read about 40 books per year and I tend not to keep the majority of them. As a result, this page is the only way I can really imagine how it would be if I was. It is so fulfilling to see my drawn library filling up!
My 2019 library until now
  • Reading challenges and other book related tracking
    I follow a reading challenge during the year, called BRACE, and it is vital of course to track it in my bullet journal. In addition, during 2019 I decided to keep track of where the books and their authors take me. I track the origin of the authors, so as to have an overview and where and when the books take place. I have been trying to use these data to create some statistics, that I found quite interesting!

Collections – Functional pages

The bullet journal is an incredible organisational tool. I keep a few functional lists that help me in my everyday life:

  • Waiting on…
    I consider this one, one of the most useful collections I use in bujo. Quite often I order things from the internet, or expect an email or a letter from somebody for a follow up. These are things that tend to be forgotten or lost inside a daily or weekly log. As a result, I keep a special page where I note what I should follow up. 2019 was a rather quiet year, but I can’t know how 2020 will go, so I will keep in my new bullet journal
  • Wishlist without deadline
    This is a list of all the things I would like to do, but they are not eminent and I do them only when I have time and mood. Not everything was done, but at least the majority was!
  • When did I last…
    In this list I note things like when I change toothbrushes, clean the windows and the fireplace, or any other task that is donea few times per year, but not regularly.
My “Waiting on” and Wishlist without deadline pages for 2019

Monthly/Weekly/Daily layouts

These are the second most important component of my bullet journal. At this time last year I took some decisions about the monthly/weekly/daily layouts that I have used during the years I have had a bujo. To be honest which of these layouts you use depend on the particular occasion and phase of your life.

During all of 2019 until now I have used a one page monthly log, the running task list for weekly and I didn’t have any dailies. By the way I found out that the running task list is also called Alastair method for weekly.

  • One-page monthly layout
    I know that a one-page monthly layout is perfect for my personal life, so I will continue using it. The months that were full of my gardening activities I kept a second one-page monthly layout dedicated to my plants.
  • Running task list or Alastair method for weekly
    I have found this layout really useful for me. I was mostly staying home and I did not have strict deadlines for the tasks to be done, so by using a running task list I avoided rewriting tasks. Now that my weeks have become more busy already, I will have to reconsider about which layout will be more useful for my 2020 bullet journal. But I never prepare my weeklies too much in advance, so I can change my mind whenever I want.
My current weekly for personal tasks

I think after this evaluation I am ready to start my 2020 bullet journal. Are you evaluating your previous versions yourself? Are there any interesting conclusions you have drawn? Please be kind enough to share them with me!

Bullet journal

My 2019 bullet journal

Oh my, January is already over! And my new bullet journal is already well started! I have the luxury of starting a new bullet journal every year, by just removing the pages of the old one and adding some new pages, as I use a Filofax clipbook.

This year I did an evaluation of my previous bullet journal, so I was ready to start the new year. Let me take you through my 2019 bujo!

Since I set up the first pages of my journal before the beginning of the actual year, I had the time and luxury to include in the beginning several of initial part of a bujo and things I think will be useful during the whole of the year. So in general, the first pages of my 2019 bujo can be divided in the following five parts:

  • 2019 Opening page

In the beginning, I have a simple opening page, similar to the one for 2018. Last year I used the free space for the keywords that I would like the new year to be characterised by. This year, I decided I will leave it empty and write keywords as they come during the year.

  • My year in a glance – 2019 Roadmap

The first thing in my journal is my 2019 Roadmap. I discussed in my post How to track your year in a glance that this was the most successful collection I have done! So why not include it again?

My 2019 roadmap. Still almost empty 🙂
  • Basic components of a bullet journal: Index and future log

Then I created my index per category. Yes I use an index, but not a general one by just listing the number of pages one after the other one. You can refer to my post My bullet journal indexing, so as to find the explanation of my system.

My future log is a simple calendar with a bit of space for notes. I do not need a lot of space for my future log, but I quite often need to see the calendar when I try to fix an appointment and having it like this helps me a lot.

My simple yearly log
  • Interesting collections

As I discussed in the evaluation of my collections, I have migrated the tracking of movies, tv series, ideas for my blog and of course a page for “Waiting on…”.

In addition, I have pages for the books I will read during the year and for the reading challenges I am following.

  • House matters – Cleaning schedule

I wanted to avoid having to repeat the cleaning process every week or every month, so I decided to include this tracking as a page in the beginning of my bujo. It came up as a schedule for a bit more than the first half of the year and I combined this page with a “When did I last…” page. In the latter I note tasks that happen on a rather irregular basis, but it is still better to keep track of them, such as changing toothbrushes or backing up my phone.

Last July we moved to a new house and we are still in process of improving small things around or rearranging, so I decided I will keep the house plans I had in my bujo last year.

It is always handy to have the fairly new house plans available!

After these five parts, I have started the everyday use of my bullet journal, with the monthly pages and anything else that occurs. How does it look? Do you use anything else in the beginning starting setup of your bullet journal?

Bullet journal

My 2018 Bullet journal evaluation: Which collections will migrate to my 2019 journal

The end of 2018 is close and a lot of us that have a bullet journal are going to start with a new bujo for the new year. For me it is easy to start a new journal, as I use a Filofax Clipbook A5. In the end of the year I remove all pages from my clipbook and store them. I then add new pages.

As I said in my previous bullet journal post, about How to track your year in a glance!, I have started evaluating my current bullet journal, so as to decide how the one for 2019 will look like. Today I am going to discuss with you the evolution of my collections during 2018.

I have several collections in my bullet journal. Some of them I created at about this time last year, when I was setting up my new journal and other I included some time during the year, so as to fit my needs. Unfortunately, I did not continue updating all of my collections with the same zeal.

When I started this blog in March, I presented 10 of the collections that I had included this year. This is a good starting point so as to do my evaluation! So here is how some of my collections evolved during 2018

  1. Mood tracker
    I had a yearly mood tracker that I updated nicely until about middle June. In June and July we moved houses, so I was far too busy to be able to update every single day my bullet journal. As a result, my “Year in pixel” was abandoned. Oh such a pity… It would probably have looked really nice with all the squares coloured. I think this is a clear indication that I should not include it again in my new bujo.
  2. Movies and Series trackers
    It was the first time I included these collections in my bullet journal and I had high hopes about them!  In the first half of the year my husband and I were watching mostly movies, but in the second half we focused on some interesting series. As a result, I overestimated the space I had dedicated to the movies, as you can see from the photo below

    On the contrary, I underestimated the pages I would need for the tv series. I started with only two pages, but joining Netflix lead to a boom in the number of series we have been following. So I had to add two more pages to the collection. Fortunately, this is easy for me, as I have a discbound notebook, but nevertheless these pages are not numbered anymore. It is so annoying, right?

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My series page in March above and my series pages in the end of November below
  • Books read
    I love this tracker. I keep it in my journal in parallel to Goodreads. It is one of the trackers in my bujo that are not totally minimalist. I like the layout of a library and I make it look similar to my own library. As I was expecting, it evolved nicely throughout the year and the titles of the books are still being filled slowly. I will not manage to fill all of the books in my library, I am afraid, but it definitely looks nice to me.
  • Crocheting and knitting projects
    These collections were both a success and a failure at the same time! I did like tracking all the things I created during the year, but it was a totally bad implementation to use the layouts I did.

  • 20181128_105218_1
    My collection for knitting projects now

    I crochet much more than I knit, as a result, my knitting projects collection has still some space, while my crochet project collection was full already by May. I have created several more projects but I didn’t create additional pages, as I did in the series tracker. I had already decided that this layout is not what suits me.

    I will definitely include similar collections in my new bujo, but I will have to find new layouts, that are more functional for me.

  • Waiting on…
    This is one of the most useful collections I use in bujo. Quite often we order things from the internet, or expect an email or a letter from somebody for a follow up. These are things that tend to be forgotten or lost inside a daily or weekly log. As a result, I have created a special page where I note what I should follow up. It is a total success and I am definitely going to include in my 2019 bujo!
    Inked20181128_105237_1_LI
  • Ideas for my blog
    This is a collections I started in April this year. Since my blog was born in March, I found it quite important to have somewhere to note my ideas for posts. After all, they come randomly and are forgotten quite fast if I don’t note them! This is going to be included in my 2019 bujo, as well!
  • Till the end of the year wishlist
    As the calendar year is coming to an end, I get the urge to finish things that I have wanted to do but I always delay. Towards the end of September, I created a wishlist with all these things that have been in my mind and are still not completed. It gives me extra motivation and it helps me to keep focused! This is not a regular collection and I am not sure I can include it somehow in my 2019 bujo, but it might come up handy again towards the last quarter of the new year. Who knows…
    20181128_105310_1.jpg
  • Are you starting a new bullet journal for 2019 or are you continuing with your current journal? Have you started setting it up already or are you still thinking about it? Are there any collections that were such a success for you and you would like to suggest it to me? I would love to hear some ideas from you!

    Bullet journal

    What do I include in my bullet journal?

    In What is a bullet journal? I explained briefly what the basic idea is behind a bullet journal and what the creator considers as the essential components. I am now going to explain some of the components that I include in my own bullet journal.

    Weekly log

    I use my bullet journal to organise my life more efficiently. Given my schedule and my style, I do not need a detailed entry per day. I have better control by looking at the week as a whole, therefore I use weekly logs. These are the core of my journal and I tend to prepare them every Thursday. As an example, I show you my weekly log for last week:

    2018-03-16-15-55-48-835-imag3127.jpg

    I like the fact that I can have all of the week on just one page and this layout gives me enough space for two columns of tasks or notes plus a column in the end for the weather of the day.

    Monthly log

    In addition to the weekly logs, I also always have a monthly log. In this I transfer whatever notes I have from the long planning of the future log, if there are days I need to remember and I know them already before the month starts, whatever comes up during the month for a week further than the current week (simply because I do not have the weekly log ready yet) and anything else that makes sense to see in the general view of the month. Examples of these are birthdays, appointments that are made well ahead and the dates of the local garbage collection.

    2018-03-16 11.34.24 000-20180316_113425

    Of course, I keep an index in the beginning of my journal, as well as a future log for the whole year. I will not go into further detail about these, as they were explained already in my previous post.

    Signifiers

    When writing your daily (or weekly) logs, you can use symbols for your entries. Tasks, events, appointments, notes, ideas, etc. can each have a different symbol that makes sense to you. As the name of the whole project says, the idea is to use bullets and this is what the creator had in mind, but you can use whatever you want. For example I use the symbol “@” for appointments and boxes for my tasks: an empty box for the tasks to do, a half full for the ones that are started and a full one for the ones that are finished. In the beginning you might want to include a key page, which is a collection of the symbols or signifiers as they are called.

    2018-03-16-11-36-08-000-20180316_113608-e1521211822833.jpg

    Personally I had a key page in my first journal, but in the new ones I did not spend time in creating one. My everyday life changed too much and as a result my bullet journal got simplified.

    Collections

    The key page leads me to the last thing I would like to discuss in this post: Collections. When using the bullet journal for a while, you will find out that there are things that you want to start monitoring, or that maybe there is a pattern of things you note on a regular basis. These can be concentrated in one page or two facing pages, instead of being scattered around your journal, and are called Collections. They can include things like books you read, movies or tv series you watch, your mood per day, birthdays, christmas gifts, a master shopping list, goals of the year, cleaning schedule, packing lists etc. The idea is to go to the next free page, put a title in it and start writing similar notes together. I am showing you my “books I read” page, which is probably the only page in my journal that has a bit of drawing!

    2018-03-16-11-34-54-000-20180316_113454.jpg

    Collections are a big topic by themselves, and I promise to prepare a post dedicated only to them!