No, I don’t use a weapon of any kind. I mean a bullet journal that you write or type in. Using bullet points, in other words. Let me explain…
There’s a concept called Bullet Journalling created by a chap called Ryder Carroll
He developed the Bullet Journal as a way to stay organised and productive. And get this, although Ryder is a Digital Designer, Bullet Journal is NOT an app (well, there is one – more on that later).
It’s a notebook.
Yep, you read that right, a notebook set out in a certain way to let you organise your life.
Now, there’s this whole other thing that Ryder talks about too. He refers to it as mindfulness.
I’m not going to talk about that here. Hit Ryder’s website to learn more.
The bit I wanted to share with you is the simple system he invented that does work – it does.
Bullets in the Bullet Journal
Imagine making a list, a normal bulleted list.
You write down everything you have in your mind that you need to do.
Then, as you finish a task, you turn the bullet point into a cross to show it’s completed.
That’s the gist of the bullet system.
You can learn all this on bulletjournal.com
There are other bullets you use too. So, a ‘>’ migrates a task to a specific collection. While a ‘<‘ schedules a task in the future log.
There are events that you note with an open bullet (a circle the size of a bullet point).
A hyphen is for making a note. You know, something that isn’t a task or event – it’s a… note.
A collection is a specific couple of pages in your Bullet Journal about one project. You could end up with lots of collections.
The future log is a couple of pages ruled off to show upcoming months.
Aside from that, you have a page index where you record what page you can find stuff on.
You have a month log for the current month along with tasks you want to complete in the current month.
Then, you have a daily log where you do rapid logging.
Rapid logging isn’t a reference to the fast felling of trees…
It refers to the preferred way to make entries in your daily log.
The idea is: you don’t write big paragraphs. Instead, you aim to write short messages for each bullet.
Brevity is king in your Bullet Journal.
You log stuff as it happens in your day and then reflect on each item later to decide what to do with it.
How it helps
I must have tried every productivity or To Do app on the app store. Yet I still found myself writing things down.
Then, I’d be in a mess. Sometimes stuff would be in an app. Other times it’d be in a notebook.
Talking of apps, Ryder has developed one called ‘The Bullet Journal Companion’. You can use it to rapid log while you are away from your notebook.
The entries disappear after 48 hours. That’s so you transfer them to your Bullet Journal.
I find it helps because it’s easy to jot something down at the time it happens and then decide on it later.
It means you can identify the crap and then focus on the good stuff.
It does take some discipline to make sure you migrate tasks at the end of the month.
And doing all that writing might make your wrist ache for a while. But when you get used to it, you’ll see that you’ve become more efficient.
One glance at your Bullet Journal and you’ll see the important stuff you should be focusing on.
Not only that but collections are a great idea too. You can create a collection for anything you need to deal with.
I mentioned earlier that a collection is a project. It could be to track your fitness. Or it could be something related to work.
The main point is this: because it’s a simple system, it’s easy to get organised and stay that way.
The bottom line…
I got tired trying to organise my life with apps. If it’s the same for you, give a Bullet Journal a go, the decision will please you.