When I was younger, from late secondary school through college and university, I always had a notebook that I called a to-do-list-book. I'd have a tiny diary for keeping track of birthdays, events, deadlines and, later, work shifts. This was always kept alongside my to-do-list-book which I used to break down my projects into manageable chunks. This was how I organised all my projects all the way up to, and throughout, university.
This worked for me as I have always preferred a paper-based planning system, I just can't get on with electronic ones. I've also always been someone who tackles projects by breaking them down first, I've literally never started something without figuring out the steps necessary to get me to a successful conclusion. It's my way of avoiding stress and ensuring nothing is overlooked.
At some point after university, I amalgamated my to-do-list-book and diary into one Filofax system which I've been using until today. For the last year or so I've been playing with it a lot more to try and make it work for me and have recently come to the conclusion that it just doesn't anymore, for a number of reasons:
I want more customisation
Because of its specific size and shape, I have to buy the diary inserts and notepaper that I need. Sure, I could design them myself in Illustrator, then print them, trim them down and holepunch them... but who has time for that?! So I'm limited to what I can buy and that's started to get really frustrating.
I'm over ringbinders
I don't really use my Filofax as a notebook because it can't lay flat and the rings are always in the way when I'm trying to write at length. I'm also interested in working over two pages a lot more and while Filofax sell inserts, like a month over two pages, I find the central bits uncomfortable to fill in.
I want everything in one place
I miss when I had everything in my to-do-list-book. It was so handy to open it up and find everything I needed. It was also fantastic for getting things out of my head, particularly the night before a busy day. And it would be nice to have something smaller - my personal sized Filofax hasn't got much in it, but it's pretty chunky to carry about.
So, I decided to check out the bullet journal system, which sounds pretty similar to what I did in my to-do-list-book. And, let me tell you, when I started looking it up, it was a rabbit hole that I gladly fell into.
What I like about the bullet journal is that you set it up however you want. I've spent a lot of time browsing Boho Berry where I got loads of ideas for setting up my bullet journal and then I planned (I know, planning planning. So meta). I've got lots of ideas for what I want to include and how I want to set it up, which I'll be doing in the next couple of weeks. Once I'm settled in, I'll share it with you and let you know how I'm getting on.