Friday, October 31, 2014

Bullet Journal - Getting and Staying Organized

Today I came across something called "Bullet Journal" which I took a keen interest into reading more about it and have been checking out Pinterest to find more links of people using this system.  It says:-

"For the list-makers, the note-takers, the Post-It note pilots,
the track-keepers, and the dabbling doodlers.
Bullet journal is for those who feel there are
few platforms as powerful as the blank paper page.
It's an analog system for the digital age that will help you
 organize the present, record the past, and plan for the future."

On the "Bullet Journal" there is a short 3 minute video here for you to look at to see what it's all about.  It is not a product to buy, it is simply explaining a system, how to be more organized ON PAPER.  We all know with the digital age there are so many apps that provide facilities to do just this however having a pen and paper is still pretty good and it's at your finger tips.  You do not need your computer on, you do not need to get a magnifying glass to read the tiny writing on your iPhone, you just open a book and start writing in it.  Sound simple.....I'm hoping this is going to be a great system for me from now and moving into a new year ahead.

All my life I have been an organizer, a list maker and in control of all those things.  In the days of Albums (or records or vinyls) I had them all organized in alphabetical order and in fact at one of my job interviews years ago for an Executive Assistant role my boss to be asked why I thought I was organized and I told him that all my records/albums at home were in alphabetical order and I got the job and he used to brag to everyone that his Executive Assistant was very organized.

Before I had kids I had a "Day Timers" Diary at work (before electronic schedules and meetings) and for my social life, I had a month at a time diary which cost me about $2 which fit into my wallet.  My social engagements were all listed in my diary which was in my wallet which was on me at all times so if someone wanted to catch up with me or there was an event on, I had the diary handy and could write it in immediately or alternatively I could organize a better date to catch up because I had the diary in my wallet.  It was simple and I was organized and this process worked for about 10 years or more I loved it.  When I had kids I kept up with the little pocket diary for a number of years until you need to start write in all those "kid events" into your diary and my little diary didn't cut it any longer.

You know, dress up date, bring a plate of food day, homework, swimming gear for school, library day etc. etc.  There diary supersedes your engagements so I then transitioned to a wall calendar a month at a time with big squares for each day and I use this system.  The problem with this system is that the big calendar is hanging up in the laundry (which is next to the kitchen) so it's great if you are at home but no good if you are out and about.  I need this calendar close to the kitchen where most of the school paper work gets filled out of an afternoon and has to go back into the school bags so the laundry is handy.

When I'm in the study which is not near the kitchen I don't have the diary.  At our last house you came into the house via the garage with the study on the left and next was the kitchen and therefore the family diary was located in the study with the computer, pens, paper etc.  Having the study there also meant that any mail that was collected was dropped off to the study on the way to the kitchen so there was no paperwork sitting on the kitchen bench.  I was always organized and the paperwork only had one location at all times.  We moved into this house over 3.5 years ago and once entering the house I end up putting my bag, keys and mail on the table at the kitchen and the mail stops there until at a later stage I then have to re-handle it and take it to the study. We are only talking about 10 metres however it's not in the direct path of come in from the garage, drop your bag, keys and mail and start the afternoon tea and wash up the kids lunchboxes etc.  So if I have to pay bills they may not be in the study I have to check another location.  Totally silly but this is what happens because I am not walking past the study (hub of paper work and household organization) on the way to the kitchen where afternoon tea is started.

In the study I also have a notebook style diary on the desk which I write things down like a "to do list" in but then on the kitchen bench there are post it notes for things to do tomorrow that need doing, school stuff and other things as well, so what I'm trying to say is there are too many separate systems and I don't really feel in control or organized but haven't come up with a better solution.  This is something that I struggle with since I'm a Virgo and organization is my middle name.  I feel like I'm dropping the ball and if I think of something that I need to do, depending upon where I am, it has to be written down there and then whether it be on my bedside table or kitchen or study so everything is all over the place.  Not good and it frustrates me but up until now I wasn't sure how to handle these separate zones where diary dates/bills get paid/lists get made as we are talking about the kitchen, the laundry, the dining table, the study and my bedside table so way too many zones.

Fast forward to today where I read about the Bullet Journalling and I'm going to give it a go.  I am going to get a notebook that will fit in my bag so when I'm out, I have the diary with me, notes etc. all in one place.  There are lots of ways you can make this more personal to suit your needs like "daily or weekly chores" instead of writing the calender 1-31 down the page some people have printed a little "month calendar" and glued that into their book.  The beauty of this system is that whilst it is a structured way of being organized you can change it or add things that suit you.  Add a Books to Read, DVD's to get out.  How many times have I gone to the video shop and thought I have no idea what that movie was that I wanted to get out next. Creative goals, Bucket List, Weight Loss Graph, Favourite Family Meals and the cookbooks they are in.  The list is endless.

One thing the Bullet Journal does is only write up one month at a time however Shandy from Aprons & Pearls wrote up her months all in one go so that she could just write events in ahead.  I like this idea because we all have things that need to be written in over a couple of months like when Sienna did Auskick it went from July to August etc. so that is one thing that I will set up for myself so the 7 weeks could be noted immediately in the diary.

This little system doesn't matter if you are in the work force, studying or a stay at home Mum or a single person with lots of craft projects to do, it looks like it will work for everyone.

If you are at home you could have your "Declutter" task as your header with "Bedroom 1, Bedroom 2, Bedroom 3" etc. Make soap, buy seeds, plant seeds, transfer to garden etc. the possibilities are endless.  What about making birthday gifts and having a list of people to make things for so when you have time, you start.  You could have a list of blogs to read or look into.  Recipes to try etc. Your weekly, monthly and seasonal chores.

I'm hoping that this system is a "ONE STOP SHOP" for me so I'm going to give it a try.  I actually get excited about being more organized and writing and setting up my book will be something I look forward to doing next week.  One thing that will probably annoy me and I will have no choice is the book will have to be carted from the kitchen, study, bedroom, handbag but I think because it will be one book with everything in it rather than lots of random calendars, diaries, notes and post it notes all over the shop.  All of my things to do, lists, ideas, reminders, Christmas planning etc. are going to be housed in one book.  It's worth giving this system a go in my opinion.  

1 comment:

  1. I found this post so interesting. I love organization, and hearing what works for other people.
    Thanks for sharing. xx