My Planner Journey Thus Far...
I debated waiting to make this post until I was more sure of what my current regimen is, but I honestly don't think it will ever be totally stable! But I've fallen in love with planners, bullet journaling, and journals of all sorts this year. There's so, so many possibilities and the idea of tryin them all until I find something that works perfectly for me and makes me more productive is so seductive to me.
In December of last year, I really decided something needed to change. I had never really used a planner in my life. I used one in my middle school days, but really only halfway. I never committed to it. I kind of wished that I had, because I now see how beneficial they really are. Back in those days, I just wrote my homework assignments on my hand or....just...didn't care enough. But 2016 was such a train wreck for me as far as getting my life in order was concerned and I was inspired by my best friend, Katiya who is a planning machine. I sat down and made a conscious choice for my future. And I on a whim bought the Bloom Daily Planner in a really pretty floral print. Now it sounds all dramatic and like a planner changed my life.
And honestly, I think it really did.
I have made a lot of progress so far this year in 'adulting' and also working on projects and organizing things in my life. But also, basically what I wanted this planner to be was sort of my way of training myself for what I really wanted: a bullet journal. But because I had never even used a planner before, I really felt I needed to figure out what kind of lists and methods of tracking myself really worked for me. And there's no way I could have done it without being able to plan. But it really helping didn't happen overnight.
(If you would be interested in a YouTube video of a flip-through of my planner and my bullet journal thus far and explaining my process and how I grew into the system I use now, let me know!)
At first, I didn't focus on making anything pretty. I just focused one week at a time, made a list of things to do for each day, moved things around as needed and just focused on getting things done. I tried all kinds of trendy bujo things like habit trackers and mood trackers, but quickly discovered they did not work for me. Specifically with mood trackers, I found it depressing and discouraging. A lot of people use them because it helps give them an idea of how they were feeling. But I find for me, it made me have to examine and check in to how I was feeling, and make me go "oh...I guess...I really don't feel that good." which was pretty lame!! And I looked back and realized I didn't need a mood tracker to know when I wasn't feeling well. Or a lot of days I felt a mixture of a lot of things, so it just didn't feel accurate.
So I went on like this April (that's just over 3 months!) of just making myself fall into the habit of every day making a list and making sure I adhered to that list. Didn't try any fancy lettering or little pictures or tap or anything. I really didn't want to overwhelm myself and immediately get discouraged. In April I finally decided to make things a little neater, make my To-do lists a little more ~artsy~ and I found it to be therapeutic. Some weeks I totally fell out of it and just chicken scratched my list, or not write on at all and thats okay! The point is it works when you need it to.
So by the end of May, I felt like I was ready. I went and I purchased my first bullet journal! I decided to go all out and buy the Leuchttrum 1917 dotted notebook like all the trendy people have. And launched myself straight into June! Now, I've been using my bullet journal on a daily basis and have finally found a rhythm and figured out what I really want my journal to be. The first 50ish pages are a lot of spreads I never used, quick sketches I did during calls at work, and messy, disorganized lists. But, I think everyone's journals are like that. It takes time to figure out what works for YOU. I spent a lot of time looking at a lot of other journals and getting inspiration for the types of collections and spreads that they did, trying things out, and finding out a lot of it didn't suit the kind of work I needed my journal to do for me.
I'm even discovering that the dotted traditional journal may not be best for me, and that once I fill this one out, I may switch to a spiral book where you can insert pages and make little sections for even more organization. But who knows!
In the end, I'm so happy I started doing this. Every month I set a few goals I want to reach like going to the doctor, getting my permit, making 20 sales in my store (all things I ended up accomplishing!) and I really do have my planners to thank for that. For me, writing things down in a place I know I will look again lets them leave my brain. I don't feel pressured to keep thinking about it for fear of forgetting. I write it down, let it leave my brain and make room for other, more productive things. Its helping me keep tracking of my savings, my shop ideas, my blog ideas, all my ideas!
Too long, didn't read: I reccommend everyone starts a planner or journal. There are so many different types of them out there. I feel like there is a style and system for everyone. It can help organize adult life, cosplays and con life, money, all of the things. All it takes is some patience, trial and error, and maybe some glitter pens for good measure!
Here are some journal pros that I look to for inspiration!
(these are really my two go-to's for their style and creativity. it's worth noting that they both have very artsy journals, but they totally do not have to be! That's just what appeals to me personally!)
So get out there, and get it together!
Love & Stars,
P.S. Shameless self plug time! Looking for a cute notebook to start trying out some spreads and dipping your toes into planning and whatnot?~ Your favorite intergalactic princess may have just opened up an Etsy shop selling just that! So please go check it out and give it a shot! My goal is to really help people and provide a dose of cuteness and personal style along the way! Check it out at: https://www.etsy.com/shop/PinkuPlanet