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August 20, 2020

Ultimate Guide Series - 1. What is Bullet Journaling?

Yop & Tom

At Yop & Tom, we are passionate about Bullet Journaling. We believe that everyone can benefit from using this technique. It can help you to become more productive and happier. We decided to put this together this blog series to tell you everything you need to know to begin your journaling journey, including what equipment you need, the benefits and some details of the technique. But we’ve also included practical advice and tips and tricks for more experienced journalers.

In this series we will cover the following chapters: What is Bullet Journaling?

  1. What is Bullet Journaling?
  2. The Benefits of Bullet Journals
  3. Bullet Journal Equipment
  4. The System
  5. Styles of Bullet Journaling
  6. The Community
  7. Getting started

Make sure you subscribe to our newsletter to get more bullet journal tips straight to your inbox, or to download the complete guide fill in your details below.



What's Included in the Guide?

Included in this Ultimate Guide is the following chapters.

  1. What is Bullet Journaling?
  2. The Benefits of Bullet Journals
  3. Bullet Journal Equipment
  4. The Bullet Journal System
  5. Styles of Bullet Journaling
  6. The Community
  7. Getting Started


1. What is Bullet Journaling

Bullet journaling was originally invented by the author Ryder Caroll. His  best-seller book "The Bullet Journal Method: Track the Past, Order the Present, Design the Future" is also known as "the analog method for the digital age", because most people who use the technique just use pen and paper.

In its essence, bullet journaling is a technique used to become more productive, mindful and focused about your activities. It can help you achieve your goals with less stress. People use it to organise their lives, manage their fitness or even to improve their mental health.

The idea of bullet journaling is to allow the author to create the perfect layout and structure for them. Use the dotted notebook grid as a guide to create layouts (called spreads) which can help you track almost anything like events, activities and lists.

Whereas a traditional journal or diary is a great way of keeping track of events such as business appointments or birthdays, they don’t give you the freedom to track things in different ways. For example if you wanted to track how much exercise you were doing, a list of ideas for your wedding or a simple shopping list, a traditional diary wouldn't be the best place to do this. A Bullet Journal (or BuJo) combines the usefulness of a diary for events with the freedom to create your own structures.

Now we understand that when you take your first look into the world of Bullet Journaling that it can seem intimidating and complicated.

If you search for the phrase "Bullet Journal Inspiration" on a platform like Pinterest, the search results can be a bit intimidating. 

The page will overflow with the most beautiful two-page spreads. You will scroll past many exquisite artworks containing monthly activity logs, mood trackers, magnificent Harry Potter drawings and more. And you may think to yourself, how am I ever going to do this myself?

But do not worry, keep it simple to start!

Bullet journal notes can involve some amazing artwork, but it'scertainly not essential to the technique itself.

There are just 5 key elements to bullet journaling which we will go through in more detail in the 4th edition of the blog series.

  1. Rapid-logging - This is the language of Bullet Journaling. Simply it’s short form notes that help you quickly and easily get your thoughts onto the page.
  2. The Key - A list of symbols, to keep track of tasks, and colours to show categories.
  3. The Index - Just like an index in a book this shows the author the page where the collections are to help you quickly find your place.
  4. Collections - This is just the word for the structure or template you design to help you monitor related ideas or lists. For example, a monthly log is a collection that gives you an overview of any given month.
  5. Migration - The process of moving tasks or ideas between collections.

Once you master these 5 key components you will see that bullet journaling is not so complex. Don’t forget, it is designed to make you more productive, not less.


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