Introduction: How to Create a Bullet Journal

In this Instructable, I will be showing you how you can create your own bullet journal. I will explaining what the different steps are and what you can do to create them.


1. A journal. Any journal can be used here, however, the ones most used are the dotted notebooks by Leuchturm.

2. Pens. If you just have a ballpoint pen that's fine, but if you want to make your bullet journal pretty things such as colourful markers and calligraphy pens are useful.

Step 1: What Is a Bullet Journal?

A bullet journal is a notebook in which you can organize yourself through several different steps taken. Creating one can help a person organize themselves. because it is a book with everything in it. Whatever it is you want to include you can you just need to find a place for it. A lot of people also use bullet journals for creative expression because if you want you can decorate it with different pictures. This gives many people a creative outlet.

Step 2: Supplies (detail)

There are many things that you can use if you want to create a bullet journal, however, there are only two basic items that you need. The first thing is a journal. You can use any type of journal that you want, but the most popular to use is a dotted notebook because it's very easy to see where you put things and it almost looks like a blank page. The other basic essential you need is a pen. Same as with the journal, you can use any type of pen, but some pens look nicer than others. Many people like putting colour and calligraphy into their journals for which they use brush pens and markers. Others use fineliners to outline things and others use highlighters to colour code things in the journal. You have a free creative choice over which stationary you want to use in the journal and which stationary fits you.

Step 3: Future Logs

To start setting up your bullet journal it is important to add the future log. The future log is a page or two in which all of the months are listed. In there you can easily write things that are coming up throughout the year. When you have an event two months away you write in that month on the day on which this event is supposed to happen. What might be useful is adding the monthly calendar in the future log so that you can highlight the days on which you have to do something. This gives me and other people a more visual version of their events and helps them see which months will be more stressful and which will be relaxed. To create this future log what you can do is split a double page into twelve equal parts, write the month at the top and the monthly calendar underneath, as seen in the picture above. When you then want to add a date you can highlight the day in the calendar and write underneath what you have to do on that day.

Step 4: Monthly Logs

The next step after the future log is the monthly log. Every month you will create a new one of these in which you write all of your tasks and events for the month. What you do every month is look into the future log and see which events/tasks you have to complete. You can then write them next to the corresponding day. Throughout the month probably more things will come up which you can then write into there. There are different ways to create this monthly log the system I use is I write out the monthly calendar in boxes in which I have enough space to add a few tasks/events. I will create equal boxes and write one number of the whole month in each of the boxes so that I have a calendar in that I can write as seen in the picture above. At the end of the month, you can then create a list of things that you haven't completed yet. You then go through that list and ask yourself about each of the individual items if you have to complete those or if you don't need to complete them anymore. This way you sort out all of the unnecessary tasks that you don't need to complete anymore. Then next month you transfer all of the tasks that you didn't complete into that calendar.

Step 5: Daily Logs

Every single day you have to complete a daily log. In these logs, you list all of your tasks for the day. To set up my daily log I split a double page into eight equal parts and write the weekday plus the date in the box as seen above. I also use my daily logs as a reflection period in which I can calm down my mind and write about what has happened in the day because sometimes I don't have tasks to complete. It really helps me to reflect on the things that have happened in a day, which is why I also recommend other people to do it. In these daily logs, you can write things that you have to complete on that specific day. If you don't complete it you can migrate the task to a different date. This helps you keep on track throughout the day and focus on the tasks you have to complete.

Step 6: Tracker

Now we come to the more individual parts of the bullet journal. In the journal you can create trackers for things you want to keep track of. The two most common ones are habit trackers and mood trackers. The habit tracker you can use for things that you would like to make a habit out of. These can range from cleaning your room to flossing every single night. Basically you create a list of things that you want to keep track of. What I do is I create an outline of the monthly calendar underneath each of the habits and then I colour in the box if I completed that habit on the day. This helps many people keep themselves accountable and it also helps them see which things they need to think about. It also helps create habits in people which they can do every single day. The second common tracker is the mood tracker. Most people use this to look at how their mood progresses throughout a month. There are many ways you can do this, however the two ways I do this is either I do a graph type of thing in which I will make a line go up or down depending on my mood. The other way that I use and that I personally find more fun is the colourful one. I will draw many objects that don't have colour yet or that haven't be drawn in yet. Every day before I go to bed I then evaluate my mood and I use the corresponding colour to fill in the object. This makes the mood more visual and more fun because it is a visual representation of your mood. Every month you then create a new one of each.

Step 7: Lists

This is another creative part of the bullet journal. People easily lose track of things which is why lists can be very helpful in the bullet journal. These lists can be anything from shopping lists to music that people want to check out. To create a list you just have to write what type of list it is and then you can write which things you want into the list. For example, when a person tells you to check out a very specific movie but you then forget which movie it is you can write the movie into a movie list and when you're looking for suggestions you can then look at the list and the same goes for shopping lists. You can always add new lists whenever you want you just have to remember in which part of the journal it is.

Step 8: Extra Decorations

Many people enjoy personalizing their journal by putting in extra decorations. In all of the pictures above you can see this with the different decorative elements that are around the main part of the journal. To add these decorations many people put a theme to their month. In the image above this theme was lemons. Throughout the month people then decorate their pages with the theme that they chose for the month. A lot of people then also theme their fonts and colours that they use in that month. Other like just putting in extra sketches into their book. You can do anything you want with it just use your creativity.