Hi, 2017! Let’s Get Sh*t Done!

img_6028Here we are again at the beginning of a new year. So much has happened! New job responsibilities, new life responsibilities. For me, 2017 is going to be a year of self-care, lots of reflection, and channeling as much as possible into various creative outlets.

Because so much has changed, and I’ve been asked about it again, I thought a good update on my Bullet Journal would be a good start to the year. Let me share what I learned over the last couple of months.

  1. Pre-made planners just do not work for me. In fact, nothing short of the Leuchtturm 1917 notebook or the Rhodia Medium Webnotebook works for what I need. Truth be told, the Rhodia is the better paper-wise between those two notebooks! I use a lot of different inks when I use my BuJo. Rhodia is the only one that holds up and has no bleed through. I was really disappointed in my new Leuchtturm – so much bleed through!
  2. When I last posted about my adventures in BuJo I wrote that I was using the Levenger Circa Notebook junior sized (for various reasons). The Circa Notebook junior size is way too narrow for all the sh*t I do, track, take care of. And those dang discs! Kept getting in my way. I couldn’t do really nice spreads without ramming my hand against the disks. I like that both the Rhodia and Leuchtturm have different bindings making it easier for me to have continuous writing across spreads.
  3. So I switched from my gorgeous Circa notebook to the Happy Planner. I hated it right from the get-go.Not only does it also have discs it has a pre-made layout making it very hard to track everything I need to track. Also, if you don’t pay close enough attention, like I did, you’ll get the wrong weekly layout and there is nothing you can do about it. Blech! (If anyone wants a Happy Planner just let me know. We’ll work out a deal. None of 2017 calendar has been used and I have some extra bells and whistles I got to “help” me out.)
  4. The idea of keeping all those meeting notes in one notebook became annoying and daunting. I kept having to flip back and forth between this meeting section and that meeting section. Now I have my BuJo for my calendar and a separate notebook for taking notes. Wait for it: After my meeting I transfer my tasks straight into my BuJo. My note taking notebook is roughly the same size as my BuJo. I make sure to title and date the notes so if I do have to go back and check on something I can flip through the pages easier looking for a specific title.


So with all this said, let’s move into what I’m doing now.

1. I am using a Leuchtturm 1917 medium dot grid notebook. Paper isn’t thick enough for all my inks so when I fill this notebook up I’m going back to the Rhodia. Even if it is traffic cone orange.

2.  Straight out I made my legend to keep me on track. Yes, things are color coordinated. This happens when you’re job suddenly becomes two jobs. I’m now the admin assistant for my original office and the assistant to the director of marketing for our entire department. (I know, I sound exactly like Dwight in “The Office”.) This is the beauty of the BuJo. The original BuJo has their own legend. I used that and tweaked it to fit what I needed.


3. The Leuchtturm has the Index pages, which I do love. The Rhodia does not. But I’ll deal with that. The Leuchtturm also has all their pages numbered. LA! The Rhodia does not. Boo.


4. I took the time and made a full year calendar just so I could see dates. Sometimes you just need a good look at just the dates to help you out.


5. Now this is new, to me anyway. The Calendex! Boy, do I love this! Now I’m not so terrified of not having pre-made weekly pages or monthly pages. Go ahead and watch this great video by Boho Berry about the Calendex and how she set hers up. I took her idea and tweaked it for my needs. I like looking at things a semester at a time. I work at a university, so my life is basically on a semester schedule. I set up my Calendex by the Spring 2017 and Summer 2017 semesters. Don’t forget to add your legend!


6. I’m still using the monthly page for quick appointment updates. I’m using color coded dots to show recurring meetings.


7. My Social Media Calendar! Now, this is just a stroke of genius. Just kidding, I honestly don’t know why I didn’t do this earlier.


8. I’m back to using the weekly layout and the To-Do list as a full spread. My weekly page is only Monday through Friday because my Bullet Journal is only for work things. Nothing else. Well, except for…

9. The mega-list spread is my Spring Semester To-Do list. At the end of Fall semester I started writing down things I needed my student assistants to do when they got back to school. Then I realized that the list also had things I had to do. Then it grew to things my marketing students needed to do (see that ink bleed through?!). So the list became this spread. It’s all organized and color coded. Also, my Lynda.com list sprang from this!


10. Ta-Da! The only pretty pages in my Bullet Journal! I am only focusing on six days at a time to do this Zen Art Challenge. I don’t want to overwhelm myself thinking I “have” to do this challenge. This is the perfect reminder of something I enjoy doing. It is also teaching me a lot about shading, perspective, and other things I have comletely forgotten from my early days in art school (early as in 5 years ago…I have no excuse).


11. Lastly, I have a Lynda.com list. There are a ton of classes I want to take through Lynda.com; especially those that deal with marketing. So I created this list of classes I need to take soon and classes I just want to take. Lot of people put lists like this in their Bullet Journals – sometimes it’s books, other times it’s movies. All these classes are work related so I thought they deserved a page in my book. Also, if I didn’t write them down I’d forget.


So this is what works for me. That’s the beauty of the Bullet Journal. You can always find ways to tweak it for your own needs.



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