2018-1-4 Bullet Journaling

My first post of the new year mentioned bullet journaling. I wanted to go more in-depth into why I moved in that direction.

Bullet Journaling to Focus My Art

I’m an artist. I’m messy. Unorganized. I forget things. If you look at my desk at the college, you might just be able to see some of the desk. I’ve read that creative people often seem messy, but they know exactly where everything is.

That is not me.

I misplace things. They then disappear from my mind. For example, the past two days I have been searching for my faculty I.D. as I need it when I go to the rec center on campus. First, I thought it was in my wallet. Wrong. Next, I thought maybe I left it in my car. Again, wrong. It wasn’t until today when I was preparing a syllabus in my office did I find my I.D. under one of my books. I think I pulled it out at the end of the semester so a student could check out library books for me.

I tell you all this to show you that I am human and a bit frantic minded. This hurts my art sometimes though. I forget that I want to get a sketch done. I misplace my art supplies. I wonder what I was working on at any particular moment. I’ve wanted to get a bit more organized for a while. I tried digital items. I ran into the problem of forgetting to keep an eye on my lists, tasks, and calendars in the cloud.

Then, while I was on “break” (those that teach know that you don’t really get a break over Christmas, you just end up prepping for the next semester) I came across something called Bullet Journaling.

And voila, my bullet journal adventure began.

First, What is Bullet Journaling?

Well, I’m not sure yet. I mean, I know what it is for me right now. But it seems to be a lot of different things to different people. Some people use it to replace their planners. Other people use it as a task list. And still, other people doodle like crazy in theirs. So understand that as I talk about it, I’m only referencing how I am currently using it.

That could all change in a minute.

For now, I’m using it as a planner and record keeper. I have a month setup, a weekly setup, and then daily. But in between the days, I add other pages as needed. For example, here is my page dedicated to this month’s sketching prompts.

Bullet Journaling

As you can see, I’ve been keeping up pretty well, but we’re only three days in. I’m sure that’ll go a bit wacky next week when I head out of town for a conference. Off to the other side, you can see one of my day sheets. Nothing fancy. Simply and useful.

But the real question, why do all this? Why write it down in a notebook?

Pen To Paper Helps Me Remember

If you remember earlier, I mentioned that I often forgot to use the digital tools. That’s because they’re on my computer. Hidden away, not being seen unless I open the program or app.

And that’s the problem. When things are not in your sight lines, you forget them. My faculty I.D. was forgotten because it wasn’t in my view. As soon as it was, I suddenly remembered why it was there.

My bullet journal is always in my view. I’m only on day 4, but because it is physical, real and usually always at my table spot, I remember to look at it, update it, and keep myself organized.

Additionally, there is something to be said about writing with good old pen and paper. It gets into your psyche. And it feels good.

Now, my plan is to keep up with the bullet journal to keep me focused on my art. I plan on adding some other pages in there with watercolor ideas and marker ideas. Things that I may want to bring to as full art pieces. If all goes well, this should increase my art for the new year.

But, there is only one way to find out. Just have to keep using it.

And for those interested, these are the basics for my bullet journaling:

And that’s it. I’m adding some more things as time goes by, but those two little items have already made a huge impace.

What Do You Use To Stay Organized

I want to hear from you. What do you use to keep yourself organized? Is it digital or a physical planner or journal. How do you use it?

Leave a comment below. I’m always looking for new ways to keep myself organized.

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