Emerald Specter 34: The Bullet Journal Post

The time has come to finally just full on talk about bullet journalling. This has gotten me way more on track than I used to be so I’m interested in letting everyone know how that was accomplished and why I’m so energized by updating a simple little book. Let’s get straight to it…

I’ve bought a lot of empty books in the past, always intending to fill them with the perfect work, sketches, my Grail diary (a la Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade)… but I’ve always been stopped short of entering anything into them because of the four or five times I’ve started doing something in them that wasn’t perfect. I made a mistake in spelling, or a line descended when I could have kept it straight… or I intended to make it a journal and ended up cutting out pages because then it became something else, then again something else, and so on. In December of 2016, I started a bullet journal for this website, specifically, and that ended up not really going anywhere because I had no reason to go into it daily to update things, causing me to lapse and let my mind do the distraction stuff that didn’t really matter.

When I got the Leuchtteurm1917 dotted notebooks, like most everyone swears by and is promoted by the inventor of the bullet journal concept, I decided to switch to doing a daily life journal and things have seen immediate improvement. I’ve mentioned them more than once in these columns and I’m promoting them actively as possible because I’ve seen results. How did I get over my issue not needing to have everything perfect? I simply told myself that didn’t matter and started putting things in the book.

The day I write this is the day I set up the bulk of February, because I’m only setting up the book one month at a time. The format I used for January had some flaws and I wanted to improve upon them by changing things up, so I set up February to reflect the changes I thought would be an improvement. If I can refine that even further, March will look even more different.

Lots of people have lots of things they put into their own personal bullet journals. The thing that drives what you put into yours is what you really want your to do. Are you a mother who needs a schedule of events, meals, and other things all in one place that you can easily access? That journal is going to look different than mine.

Some of the things I started out thinking were important to me in my own journal was me drawing out all the art work, or putting in the things on all the pages without any sort of added content from external sources. The website journal showed me that I do not, in fact, want that but rather I want something more useful. I utilize the ChronoDex for my daily activity, coloring in the wheel with the activities I have participated in during the day. January’s ChronoDex activity is going to look very simplistic compared to what I’ve got planned for February, because I’ve learned the types of things I wanted to include by doing what I’ve been doing for the past month or so. Hell, I’m expecting December to look like a well oiled machine of usefulness compared to what I have for January… and the perfectionist in me wants to include all of 2017 in the book but the realist in me understands that the journal I’m using probably isn’t going to survive with empty pages by the end of the year. I haven’t added everything I’ve wanted in their for February, yet, and while February is going to be more refined it’ll also be the work in progress for March… until I find that perfect system that includes everything I want in it.

A quirk of mine is that I enjoy (or at least I used to) creating things that can’t be done in a single place, game-ified, and colorable. So, for example, I have used my love of Excel to do something like the ESPL feature I currently have running on this website… but I used to do that just for me. I’ve done that for all kinds of little side things, going back so far into my earlier years as to be using seems of notebook paper to track things. Alas, 99% of the information from back then is gone, but that doesn’t matter. So, using that quirk I’d like to do something similar for my own bullet journalling… so I’m telling you that I’m going to be working on game-ifying bullet journaling.

This will require you to keep track of your own stuff, of course, but the accomplishments will be two fold. The vision in my head resembles Star Wars Galaxy of Heroes, but I’m just sort of using that as a vague vision to go in the direction of game-ification. I’ll build a base system and you can populate the “overlay” with whatever you want. So if you’re into a Kung Fu themed game style, you can overlay that… if you want My Little Pony, go for that instead. I may even release some “templates” you can use if you don’t want to be creative on your own. All of that will be driven by bullet journal accomplishments, though, and that will help you succeed in life AND the game I built on it.

And, of course, the primary focus of my project is still to complete the bullet journal items to continue improving. Stay tuned, though.

So, I’ve used almost the entire column to discuss things in a mainly vague fashion. If I can write 1,000 words in a vague fashion, just imagine what I can write about in more depth and in more detail. I won’t outline everything I’m doing, but I will continue to refer to the bullet journal in my column writing and I’ll assist anyone that asks with suggestions if they’re having issues coming up with things to put in their journals.

Think on it.