How To Start A Bullet Journal (And Take Control Of Your Life)

Are you tired of using generic, pre-made planners that don’t quite fit your needs? 

Are you looking for a flexible system that allows you to organize your life in a way that works best for you?

Look no further than bullet journaling!

A bullet journal is a customizable planner system that allows you to organize your life in a way that works best for you. 

If you’re a student on the go or a professional working full-time, or simply someone who wants to keep track of their time.

Bullet journals can assist you to meet your goals and make maximum value out of your time

In this comprehensive guide for beginners, we’ll explain all the necessary things in order to start bullet journaling.

We’ll go over the supplies you’ll need, show you how to set up your bullet journal, and give you tips for making the most of your journaling experience.

So grab a notebook and some pens, and let’s get started on your bullet journaling journey!

Gather the Materials

Okay, listen up, friends! 

Before we dive into the world of bullet journaling, we need to make sure we have the right materials. 

To make our bullet journaling experience smoother and more enjoyable.

Now, let’s get some materials that are specifically designed for this purpose.

Choose A Notebook

red and blue notebook on top of a white surface

First things first, you need a notebook. I highly recommend getting a dot grid notebook, as it provides the perfect balance between structure and freedom.

Plus, it’s perfect for drawing out those fancy trackers and spreads we all love.

If you’re feeling fancy, you can also choose a notebook with a beautiful cover that speaks to you and sparks joy every time you open it.

Pick the Supplies

different kind of colored pens on top of a smooth surface

Next up, bullet journal supplies! I cannot stress this enough – invest in good quality pens.

Not only will they make your handwriting look neater, but they’ll also make your bullet journal look more aesthetically pleasing.

My personal favorites are the Staedtler Triplus Fineliners and the Sakura Pigma Micron pens, but feel free to experiment and find the perfect pens for you.

Other supplies you might want to consider include washi tape, stickers, highlighters, and colored pencils.

These can add some fun and creativity to your pages and make your bullet journal truly unique.

Don’t skimp on the supplies, my friends.

Trust me, investing in some high-quality supplies will make the process of bullet journaling much more enjoyable, and you’ll be more likely to stick with it.

Plus, who doesn’t love an excuse to buy some new stationery?

Setting Up Your Bullet Journal

Alright, folks, it’s time to get down to business – it’s time to set up our bullet journals! 

There are a few key pages that most bullet journalers include, and I’m here to give you the lowdown.

Create a key page

an open bullet journal with lots of star stickers.

Your key page is where you get to define the creative symbols and colors that will make your bullet journal uniquely yours.

  • Symbols: Let’s start with symbols. You’ll use symbols to represent different tasks or events in your daily log.

    For example, you might use a bullet to indicate a task that needs to be done, a star to indicate a priority task or an arrow to indicate a task that’s been moved to a different day.

    The beauty of symbols is that they’re entirely customizable – you can use whatever symbols make the most sense to you.
  • Colors: Next up, let’s talk about colors. Adding color to your bullet journal is a great way to make it more visually appealing and easier to read.

    You might use different colors to represent different types of tasks or events – for example, blue for work-related tasks, green for personal tasks, and pink for social events.

    Again, the possibilities are endless – use whatever colors speak to you.
  • Color Page: Finally, you’ll want to create a color code page to keep track of all the symbols and colors you’re using.

    This page is a handy reference guide that you can refer back to whenever you need a reminder of what each symbol or color means.

Your key page is an essential part of your bullet journal. 

It’s where you get to flex your creative muscles and define the symbols and colors that will make your bullet journal truly unique. 

So, grab your pens, get colorful, and have fun with your key page!

Create a Future Log

the future log page  of a bullet journal below a cup of coffee.

Who doesn’t love planning for the future? With a bullet journal, you can take that love to the next level with your very own future log! 

Here are some tips to make your future log a success:

  • Decide: First things first, decide how far ahead you want to plan. Do you want to plan for a week, a month, or even a year? It’s up to you!
  • Set-Up: Once you’ve decided on the timeframe, it’s time to set up your future log.

    You can choose to use a calendar layout or divide your future log into sections for each month – whatever works best for you.
  • Update: When setting up your future log, don’t forget to add in any important dates or events you already know about.

    This could be anything from birthdays to work deadlines to vacation sure to update your future log with any new events or tasks that come up.

    This will help you stay on top of things and avoid any last-minute stress.

Remember that your future log is a tool to help you plan ahead, but it’s okay if things change! 

Be flexible and willing to adjust your plans as needed.

With a well-organized future log, you’ll never miss an important event or deadline again. So, go ahead and start planning your future – the possibilities are endless!

Plan your Meals

"Meal Plan" writings on a blue plate

Let’s talk about one of my favorite topics – food! Whether you’re trying to eat healthier or stick to a specific diet, a bullet journal meal plan can be a game-changer. Here’s why:

  • Planning your meals in advance helps you avoid the temptation of unhealthy options when you’re hungry and don’t know what to eat.
  • With a meal plan, you can make sure you’re getting all the nutrients you need, which is especially important if you have specific dietary requirements.
  • A meal plan can also save you time and money – by planning ahead, you can make a grocery list and avoid buying unnecessary items or resorting to takeout.

When it comes to setting up your meal plan, there are a few things to keep in mind:

  • Decide: whether you want to plan your meals for the day or the entire week. Some people prefer to plan out every meal and snack, while others just plan dinner.
  • Look for healthy, balanced recipes: look for recipes that fit your dietary needs and taste preferences. There are plenty of resources online, or you can create your own recipes.
  • Be flexible: if something unexpected comes up, it’s okay to switch things around or even take a break from the plan altogether. The goal is to make healthy eating easier, not stress you out.

So, grab your favorite cookbooks or search online for inspiration, and start planning your meals! For a healthy you.

Create a To-Do List

"to-do list" writing on a bullet journal

Ah, the to-do list – the trusty sidekick of every productivity enthusiast! 

It’s a simple concept, but it can be incredibly effective in helping you stay on top of your tasks. 

Here’s why I love including a to-do list in my bullet journal:

  • Writing down tasks helps me remember them better and keeps me accountable for completing them.
  • By prioritizing my tasks, I can make sure I’m focusing on the most important things first and avoid getting overwhelmed.
  • Crossing off completed tasks is a satisfying feeling and gives me a sense of accomplishment.

When it comes to setting up your to-do list, there are a few things to consider:

  • Write down: always write down your tasks in a way that makes sense to you – you can use symbols like beautiful fonts or numbers,
  • Prioritize your tasks: prioritize based on importance and urgency. This will help you avoid getting sidetracked by less important tasks.
  • Don’t overload your list: it’s better to focus on a few key tasks than to try to tackle too much at once and end up feeling overwhelmed.

Remember, your to-do list should work for you, not the other way around. 

So, experiment with different formats and find what works best for your needs. 

And when you’re done with your tasks for the day, make sure to give yourself a well-deserved pat on the back!

Track your Health

a hand writing on a bullet journal on top of a wooden table

Taking care of our physical health is so important, and it’s great to have a dedicated space in your bullet journal to help you stay on track

Here are some ways to use a health/fitness section in your journal:

  • Set fitness goals: Whether it’s running a certain distance, lifting a certain weight, or doing a certain number of push-ups,

    Setting specific goals can help you stay motivated and measure your progress over time.
  • Track your workouts: You can track your workouts by writing down what you did during each workout, how long you exercised, and how you felt afterward.

    This can help you identify patterns and adjust your routine as needed.
  • Log your food intake: Writing down what you eat can help you stay mindful of your diet and make healthier choices.

    You can also track things like water intake and daily supplements.
  • Take progress photos: Sometimes it can be hard to see progress in ourselves, but taking progress photos can help.

    Snap a photo every month or so to see how far you’ve come.

Remember, your health/fitness section should be a positive space to help you achieve your goals, not a place to beat yourself up for any slip-ups. 

Celebrate your successes and be kind to yourself if you have an off day.

Your body is amazing and deserves to be taken care of!

Create a Notes Section

"Notes: writing on an open bullet journal

The notes section is where the magic happens! 

It’s a space where you can jot down anything from random thoughts to important ideas that pop into your head during the day. 

Here are some fun and creative ways to use your notes section:

  • Brain dump: Use this space to get all of your thoughts and ideas out of your head and onto paper. This can help clear your mind and make room for new ideas.
  • Inspiration board: Create a collage of quotes, images, and ideas that inspire you. This can serve as a source of motivation when you’re feeling stuck.
  • Gratitude journal: Write down things you’re thankful for each day. This can help you focus on the positive and cultivate a sense of gratitude.
  • Doodles and sketches: Use the notes section to practice some stunning doodles or to create quick sketches of ideas.
  • Mind map: Draw a visual representation of a project or idea to help you see all the different parts and how they connect.

With a notes section, the possibilities are endless!

Write your Passwords

"Password" writings on top of a red surface

Having a lot of online accounts can be overwhelming, and remembering all your passwords can be a hassle. 

That’s where a password log comes in handy! 

Here are some reasons why you might want to add a password log in a page of your bullet journal:

  • Security: Writing down your passwords may seem counterintuitive, but having them all in one place can actually make them more secure.

    Instead of using the same password for every account, you can create unique passwords for each account and keep them safely stored in your password log.
  • Convenience: No more trying to remember which password goes with which account. With a password log, you can quickly and easily find the login information you need.
  • Organization: Having all your passwords in one place can help you stay organized and save time.

    No more searching through old emails or resetting passwords because you’ve forgotten them!

So, if you’re looking for a simple and secure way to keep track of your passwords, a password log in your bullet journal might just be the solution you need.

Starting a bullet journal is an excellent way to take control of your life and become more organized. 

With the right supplies and a bit of creativity, you can create a unique and personalized planner that meets your needs. 

Remember to invest in high-quality pens and a dot grid notebook, and don’t be afraid to add some color and creativity to your pages. 

When setting up your bullet journal, keep in mind that there is no right or wrong way to do it. You have the freedom to customize your journal in a way that works best for you. 

So, grab your supplies, unleash your creativity, and start your bullet journaling journey today.

Remember, it’s not just about staying organized – it’s also about having fun along the way.

Want to improve your bullet journal but don’t know how?

Are you feeling stuck with your bullet journal and don’t know how to make it better?

Well, fear not! I’ve got an exciting solution for you. 

Get ready to level up your bullet journaling game with our free bullet journal templates!

Our templates have everything you need to start your bullet journaling journey on the right foot. 

From a comprehensive key page to a future log, monthly log, daily log, and more, our templates have got you covered. 

The best part? You can customize them to make them uniquely yours!

So, why wait? Don’t let your bullet journal gather dust on the shelf. 

Download now to get your hands on our amazing bullet journal templates and take your journaling to the next level. Trust me, your future self will thank you for it!


What I wish I knew before starting a bullet journal?

Before starting a bullet journal, there are several things that one should consider. 

Firstly, it is essential to understand that a bullet journal is not just a planner or a diary; it is a customizable system for organizing your life. 

Therefore, it requires some planning and preparation before you start. It would be helpful to think about your goals and what you want to achieve with the bullet journal. 

What is a simple bullet journal?

A simple bullet journal is a minimalist version of a traditional bullet journal. 

It typically includes just the essential elements such as a monthly log, and daily log. 

A monthly log allows you to plan out your month in advance. The daily log is where you can keep track of tasks, events, and notes for each day. 

In a simple bullet journal, you can also include a few trackers to monitor habits, goals, or anything else you wish to track.

How long should a bullet journal last?

The duration of a bullet journal depends on how much you use it and the number of pages you include. 

A bullet journal can last anywhere from a few months to a year or more. 

Some bullet journal enthusiasts prefer to use a new journal every month or two, while others use the same journal for a full year. 

Ultimately, the length of time your bullet journal lasts is up to you.

Am I too old to bullet journal?

No, there is no age limit to bullet journaling. Anyone can benefit from bullet journaling, regardless of their age. 

It is a flexible system that can be customized to fit your lifestyle and preferences. 

It can be especially helpful for individuals who want to stay organized, keep track of goals, and reduce stress. 

Whether you are a student, a professional, a retiree, or anyone in between, bullet journaling can be an effective tool for managing your life.

Should a bullet journal have lines?

The decision to use a bullet journal with or without lines is entirely up to personal preference. 

Some people prefer to use journals with dot grids or plain pages to have more freedom in their designs, while others prefer lined pages to keep their writing straight. 

Lines can also be helpful for those who struggle with keeping their handwriting neat and organized. 

Ultimately, the decision comes down to what works best for you and your bullet journaling needs.

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