Y&T: Hi Hannah, congratulations on being selected for the March Creator of the Month. We just loved your colourful, March spreads. Can you tell us a little bit about yourself?
My name is Hannah, and I live in South Yorkshire. I have a beautiful tuxedo cat named Lotte, who purrs louder than a jet plane engine. I'm 22, and will begin studying Midwifery as a mature student in September 2021 - I'm so excited to be starting on that journey! As well as bullet journaling, I also love to paint,, embroider, sew, and build A LOT of houses in The Sims!
Y&T: How did you get into journaling?
My mum actually got me started with bullet journaling. She used the bullet journal system to help with productivity throughout 2017, and found some YouTubers and bloggers that she thought would interest me, so we watched some videos together and I was away! I was struggling with organising my time on my college course, and I found the more artistic elements therapeutic. My earlier bullet journal spreads aren't the prettiest, but they were functional and they helped me a lot with productivity and time management!
Over the years I've cut back on the number of spreads I put in my bullet journal; I think it's very tempting when you first start to throw in all the habit trackers you can think of, but I found I really didn't need them. So nowadays, my bullet journal is highly decorated, but quite basic in terms of the spreads I include.
Y&T: How do you keep motivated to keep up with journaling?
When I first started, I was really excited to start my new hobby, so it wasn't difficult to keep up with every day! I did have a bit of a lull, where I was telling myself I was too busy to bullet journal. That seems really odd to me now, as it's something I use to help with my time management - how was I too busy to use it?! But to combat that I cut back on the decoration and just had a more simple bullet journal for a while so it felt less overwhelming. Some months I would put 'Journaling' as one of my habits in my habit trackers, so that I was more motivated to jot at least one thing down a day so I could tick off the habit! It's something I've incorporated into my daily routine now - it's just a habit to open up my journal and jot down what I want to get done that day every morning. And honestly having really decorative spreads is a really good motivator - why would I spend so much time making it pretty if I'm not going to use it?!
Y&T: What benefits do you get from journaling?
I find bullet journaling really beneficial for my mental health. I have anxiety, so I can get very stressed about the things I need to get done, but seeing everything written out in simple bullet pointed steps helps it feel more manageable and approachable. Habit trackers are really helpful for me to pay attention to my behaviours and hold myself accountable for looking after myself physically and mentally. The process of setting up spreads is a really therapeutic time for me each month - from browsing for inspiration, to sketching out the layouts, to painting all the decorations, and finally filling in the spreads. It's a really calming and positive hobby, and it doubles as the perfect productivity aid!
Y&T: That’s really interesting, do you have any goals or plans for 2021 you are using your Yop & Tom journal for?
In September I started an Access to HE course for Nursing and Midwifery, and I've used my journal to help me organise my time for that. I keep note of all my assignments and coursework and when everything is due, and I have a habit I track that's just 'study', so I'm motivated to read something relevant at least once a day! It was really useful for my university applications, as I wrote down all the important dates like when my applications were due and when my interviews were. I find it really useful when everything I need to know is in just one place - I know that my bullet journal holds all the important information I need right now! So I've used my journal all this academic year to keep me on track with my Access course and my university applications, and now that I've been accepted to start Midwifery in September I'm sure I'll be using it to organise my time as a student midwife!
Y&T: And lastly, what is your favourite Yop & Tom journal or planner?
I use the Moon and Stars design in Midnight Blue.
Yop & Tom Dot Grid Journal - Midnight Blue
I can honestly say it's my favourite bullet journal I've used! The pages are super thick, so they can stand up to me when I get a bit water-heavy with my painting! The heavy paper also stops things bleeding through or ghosting on the pages, which I really appreciate. The pages are much closer to true white than others I have used - creamy paper is nice, but annoying when it alters the colours I'm using (or when I make a mistake and need to cover it up with something!) The dots aren't too dark to be intrusive or too faint to follow, and I love the texture of the vegan leather colour. The moon and stars design is really pretty and delicate too!
Y&T: Thank you so much Hannah, we look forward to seeing what else you create, and good luck in your course in September.
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