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

How to track your year in a glance!

I have had a bullet journal for 2.5 years by now and soon it will be time to set up my fourth bullet journal in a row. I have already started thinking about it! As a first step in setting up my new bujo, I have started evaluating the last one and what I have learnt about it and myself. So I am going to share my experience in a few blogpost till the end of the year, as the different ideas will be coming to me.

In the several bullet journals I have had, I have gone through different stages. I am tending to be rather minimalist and draw as little as possible in my bullet journal. I have noticed a pattern in my bullet journals: at the beginning of the year, I am usually spending a bit more time on setting things up, so I tend to search a bit more and try anything I see and looks interesting, but towards the middle of the year I am becoming more focused on the tasks and everyday responsibilities. As a result I fall behind with updating things. Does it happen to you too?

Now, concerning the the topic I want to discuss in this post, there are several ways of tracking a whole year in a glance. Below I describe a few of these ways that I have tried myself, the purpose they served and how they worked for me.

Yearly mood tracker

A simple way of tracking a year is through a mood tracker. The idea behind it is to dedicate a colour for each type of mood and instead of having a different mood tracker every month or week, have one for the whole year. I did have one of these in both my 2017 and 2018 bullet journals, but the result was the same in both years: I stopped updating it around the middle of the year…

20181024_094100
My yearly mood tracker for 2018…

Level 10 Life

Last year I tried the system Level 10 Life, that I saw in one of my favourite bloggers Boho Jerry. This is a simplified way of evaluating the complex sides of our lives.

The idea behind it is first to create a graph of ten concentric circles and divide them in ten slices. Each of these slices will represent an area of your life that is important for you, such as family and friends, career, health and fitness, finances etc.

Level 10 Life BohoJerry.jpg
Level 10 Life created by Bojo Jerry

Firstly you do a current evaluation of these areas. This means that you ask yourself how satisfied you are at this moment. For example you feel that in the matter of family you are happy and you would quantify that satisfaction to be 7 out of 10, so you colour 7 parts of the slice that corresponds to family. At the end of the current evaluation you create darker lines on your graph.

Then you set a few goals for each of these areas, which you will try to achieve during the year, so as to improve your satisfaction of your life. Then towards the end of the year or whenever you really feel like, you can go back to this page and evaluate your progress.

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My attempt to create a Level 10 Life assessment

Well, it was a nice idea and I was quite interested in it, but it didn’t really work for me… As you can see from my Level 10 Life, I never really managed to evaluate my current satisfaction and I did not have time to go back to it any time during 2017…

2018 Roadmap

This year I tried something different: a Roadmap. This idea I saw in the How I’ve set up my third bullet journal blogpost of another favourite blogger Cristina77. It is a fun way to have an overview of the year in a glance. Cristina is amazing in drawing things, but I am less patient and less of an artist, so this is how my page looked at the beginning of the year:

Roadmap en.jpg
My 2018 roadmap in the beginning of the year

Less colourful and more basic, but quite similar to the one of Cristina77, so definitely I give the credit to her!

We are not far from the end of the year now, so I can already tell you that this page was an absolute success for me! It fitted me perfectly! I used it whenever I thought there is something worthy to note it in the month that happened. Other times I noted the dates and other times just the incident or even just a word. Its maintenance required minimum time and effort, so even in the busiest months of this year that we were in the middle of a house moving, I did have a few seconds to write down just a couple of words!

This is how it looks currently:

Roadmap October en

Doesn’t my roadmap look nice? For every month I use a different colour of the fineliners of STABILO point 88, just to make it a bit more obvious that the memories belong to a different month. I really like the Stabilo pens, as I have explained in an older blogpost of mine: The utensils I use in my bullet journal. I am really satisfied with this page and I am pretty sure I will use it again in the new year!

Do you have any page of tracking your year that was an absolute success for you in this year’s bullet journal? Or in general a new page you tried in this year’s bullet journal and was so successful for you? I would love to hear your suggestions, as inspiration for the 2019 bullet journal is always welcome!