Over the last 10 years we have witnessed a significant development in technology and in particular, the use of smartphones.  We are contactable 24/7 and just about have apps to organise our apps.  We struggle to resist the urge to look at our screens and easily become distracted, all of a sudden clocking up 1/2 hour on Facebook or YouTube without even realising it.  I have tried a number of strategies to reduce my “online time” including an app that plays relaxation music while working for 25 minutes blocks.  I must admit I felt I did make some achievements with Tide.  But to be honest, I feel like I have a reduced attention span due to the ease of “googling” any question I may have or snap chats from friends that coincide with the “googling”, then back and forth with Facebook, Pinterest, Instagram, you get the idea!

How can we achieve our goals and plan our days these constant distractions?  I have recently stumbled upon a system which I believe could contain the answer.  Added to the fact that I have a fetish for books/journals (sorry Kindle) – there’s nothing better than the smell of a new book shop (well, except if its a book and coffee shop – heaven!). JB Journals index pic

The system I speak of is called “The Bullet Journal” and was created by Ryder Carroll, a New York based designer who struggled with a learning disability which resulted in short bursts of intense focus.  He had to work out a way to capture his thoughts quickly and in a way that could track the past, organise the present and prepare for the future.  He described looking at a blank page or lots of confusing notes and not knowing where to begin.  We’ve all been there, sticky notes across the desk, two different notebooks on the go at once.  This system brings it all together, in one convenient and inspiring location.

The Bullet Journal system works as a process:

1. Key – list of bullet icons to enable quick recording of notes

2. Index  – lists the pages/contents of your journal

3. Rapid Logging – using the bullet icons to take quick notes in an organised manner

4. Monthly Log – brings together your monthly calendar and task list

5. Migration – this is the key to successful bullet journaling, you decide which items are important enough to transfer to the next week/month and scrap those distractions that may have seemed important at the time.

The most exciting and attractive part of bullet journaling is the choice that you can either begin with the basics – a notebook and pen or find inspiration from many individuals and communities (online) see boho berry that have taken the basic idea and transformed it into a form of art therapy – brilliant colours, headings, borders. You don’t even have to be a gifted artists, there are also templates, stencils and stickers you can use.  This system is universal and once you get the idea easy to transform into your own unique system.  Bullet journals are usually created on dotted pages for ease of use.  Check out my Etsy Store JBJournals to get started!

written by Julie Barrow