How to Use Your Bullet Journal for Self-Care: Professional Care

How to Use Your Bullet Journal for Self-Care: Professional Care
How to Use Your Bullet Journal for Self-Care: Professional Care

8 Ways Your Bujo Can Help Your Work Life

Welcome to Week 7: Professional Care of the Bullet Journal Challenge series! In case you missed it, the #BulletJournalChallenge announced on www.bulletjournal.com is the perfect way to find inspiration for all the ways you can use a bujo for self-care. The details of the challenge are here. My post about Week 6, social care, can be found here.

This week’s topic is professional care, which includes:

  • Work
  • Purpose
  • Finances

This post contains affiliate links to Amazon.com.  If you purchase products from these links, I’ll earn a small commission at no extra cost to you.  To read my full disclosure statement, click here.

Below are eight ways you can use your bullet journal for taking care of your professional care needs.

Work

Trackers

Depending on what your career is, there are many ways your bullet journal can help make your professional life easier. If you’re a project manager or engineer working on an assignment with several deadlines, you could create a tracker for your project’s key milestones. If you’re a fellow writer, I find that keeping a submission tracker helps me keep up with not only who I submitted my work to, but also when. This makes it so much easier for me to keep track of when I need to follow up with a piece I’ve submitted.

Other tracker ideas for helping your professional life:

  • If you’re on the hunt for a job, keep a tracker with the names of places you’re applying to and leave room for the date you first contacted them for the position. You could also write down relevant information about the company or the job on this page.
  • Bloggers, you could make a tracker for your page views, social media followers, and so much more! Blogging has so many numbers involved that having a tracker will help you so much when you’re looking to work with a brand for sponsored content. As time goes on, it’ll also serve as a record of how far you’ve grown.

For more tips on stress-free habit trackers, check out my post here.

Brain Dumps

A popular exercise to promote creative problem solving is to brainstorm 5-10 problems and solutions related to your work every day. If you don’t want to use your morning pages to do this exercise, you could use pages out of your bullet journal for brainstorming. Don’t forget to index these pages; you never know when one of your brainstorming sessions might hold the answer to a problem later on!

Calendars

If you’re a blogger or a writer, you could keep a copy of your editorial calendar in your bullet journal. Keeping an editorial calendar will help you always know what you need to write next and prevent you from wasting time brainstorming your next topic.

Other ways you can use your bullet journal’s calendar:

  • Make a note of important dates for your deadlines.
  • Keep track of conferences related to your profession. Even if you can’t attend, you know to be on the lookout for news related to the conference or convention.
  • Write down the dates for meetings and interviews. Even if you keep track of these on your phone or a digital calendar, you can be sure you won’t miss an important interview or meeting if your app fails.

Collections

Here are a few collection ideas that can help your professional life:

  • Make a collection of your accomplishments at work, so that when it’s time to update your resume, you don’t have to guess about the dates you reached milestones with your projects or won awards.
  • Make a list of your favorite professional development books, blogs, and podcasts.
  • Keep a physical contacts list of your top contacts such as previous employers, mentors, and other professional contacts so that you can always have this information ready. This saves so much time when applying for a new job or if you’re looking for leads for an assignment.
  • Make a page all about your dream job and ways you can work towards having it. You can use this page as motivation while you chase your dream.

Purpose

Collections

Here are a few ideas for collections to help you define your purpose:

  • Make a list of your favorite inspirational quotes. (Need help with this? Check out my post here for some of my favorite quotes and some free printable journaling cards!)
  • List your favorite personal development books, blogs, and podcasts. My personal favorite is The Artist’s Way, by Julia Cameron

If you purchase through my link, I’ll earn a small commission at no extra cost to you. I appreciate your support!

  • Write down your personal mission statement. This could be as silly or serious as you want. Below, you can see mine:
Personal Mission Statement
Personal Mission Statement in my commonplace book.

Journal

If you’re feeling adrift or the idea of writing down your personal mission statement sounds intimidating, you may benefit from journaling or doing morning pages for a few days to see if you notice any recurring themes in your personal life. If you’re new to journaling or in need of inspiration, subscribe to my email list for prompts and updates here.

Finances

Trackers

There are so many different ideas for financial trackers on Pinterest and Instagram. Just search for #savingstracker or #spendingtracker for inspirations. Here are some ideas for financial trackers:

  • Savings tracker: If you’re saving for a particular goal, like the down payment on a house, vacation, or a car, you could decorate the page to match the theme.
  • Spending tracker: You could do this a few different ways. You could either keep track of the amount of money you’re spending or if you’re trying to do zero spend days, you could keep track of the days you don’t spend money.
  • Bill tracker: You can keep track of bill due dates and amounts here. Make sure you leave room to check off when you’ve paid your bill.
  • Credit score tracker: If you’re working towards improving your credit score for a big loan such as a mortgage, you could keep track of your credit score from month-to-month here.

Collections

Do you need help staying motivated to keep up with your finances? Collections can help you. Here are a few ideas:

  • Make a note of your favorite blogs and podcasts on finances, saving, and budgeting.
  • Make a list of things you want to save for, both big and little. Don’t be afraid to dream big here!
  • Create a list of your favorite books on budgeting and finance. Mine is The Total Money Makeover, By Dave Ramsey

If you purchase through my link, I’ll earn a small commission at no extra cost to you. I appreciate your support!

The Bullet Journal Challenge Series

If you’re interested in participating in the challenge, I’ve listed each week’s topic here:

If you’re on Instagram, make sure you follow the hashtag #BulletJournalChallenge for inspiration! Also, if you’re reading this long after the challenge is over, I encourage you to do the challenge anyway.  Self-care is so important to your overall well-being, and it’s never too late to start taking better care of yourself.

More Tools to Use Your Bujo for Self-Care

If you’re looking for more inspiration for using your bujo for self-care, sign up for my email list to receive free journaling prompts and printable quotes for your bujo. I’ll be adding more freebies, so check your inbox for updates!

7 Days of Journaling Prompts Renew EditionSubscribe to my email list to receive your copy!

 

Subscribe for updates and free printables!




Do you use your bullet journal to help your professional life? I’d love to hear your ideas in the comments!

How to Use Your Bullet Journal for Self-Care: Professional Care
How to Use Your Bullet Journal for Self-Care: Professional Care

 

How to Use Your Bullet Journal for Self-Care: Social Care

How to Use Your Bullet Journal for Self-Care: Social Care
How to Use Your Bullet Journal for Self-Care: Social Care

Welcome to Week 6: Social Care of the Bullet Journal Challenge series! In case you missed it, the #BulletJournalChallenge announced on www.bulletjournal.com is the perfect way to find inspiration for all the ways you can use a bujo for self-care. The details of the challenge are here. My post about Week 5, environmental care, can be found here.

This week’s topic is social care, which includes:

  • What are you doing to show yourself love
  • Happy moments to reflect on
  • Make a list of people who support your effort

This post contains affiliate links to Amazon.com.  If you purchase products from these links, I’ll earn a small commission at no extra cost to you.  To read my full disclosure statement, click here.

Below are three ways you can use your bujo for taking care of your social care needs.

3 Ways You Can Use Your Bujo for Social Care

Habit Trackers

In my layout this week, I left a space for “social” in my habit tracker to keep track of keeping in touch with friends and family once a day. My intent is not to simply click like on one of their posts but to check in with either a text, call, or private message once a day. I’m not always very good at keeping in touch with friends and family when I’m busy with my kids or my writing, so I’m thankful for this week’s theme for the challenge.

Bujo Weekly Layout
My layout for this week of the challenge.

You could also make a separate layout to keep track of friends and family if this is a habit you want to track long term. This is especially helpful for long-distance friendships and for those who want to have relationships go deeper than liking posts on social media.

If the idea of keeping a habit tracker sounds overwhelming, check out my post on keeping your habit tracking stress-free here.

Collections

There are a few different collections you could keep to help you with social care. My favorite way to do collections pages is to keep lists. Here are a few ideas to get you started:

  • Keep a contacts page with the names of people in your circle who support you. You should keep their contact information next to their name so that you can send them thank-you notes for their help.
  • While on the subject of contacts, you could keep a list of your immediate friends’ and family’s birthdays and other meaningful dates so that you can plan ahead.
  • Make a list of all the ways you show love to yourself, either through a written list or sketches.
  • Keep a page of happy memories to reflect on. You could either make this a written list, or if you’re feeling artistic, you could sketch the moments on your pages. You could also add photos to your page of happy moments.

Affirmations Page

If you don’t do affirmations in your morning pages, you could use a few pages out of your bujo to write down daily affirmations. If you don’t want to use a whole page devote to affirmations, you could always write down a daily affirmation on your weekly or daily pages. The important part of affirmations is that you remember to repeat it to yourself throughout the day. Don’t write it in the morning only to forget about it after a few hours. It may help you to revisit the page you wrote the affirmation on later in the day to keep it fresh in your memory. I recommend checking in with your bullet journal at lunch and just before bed if you can spare the time.

The Bullet Journal Challenge Series

If you’re interested in participating in the challenge, I’ve listed each week’s topic here:

If you’re on Instagram, make sure you follow the hashtag #BulletJournalChallenge for inspiration! Also, if you’re reading this long after the challenge is over, I encourage you to do the challenge anyway.  Self-care is so important to your overall well-being, and it’s never too late to start taking better care of yourself.

More Tools to Use Your Bujo for Self-Care

If you’re looking for more inspiration for using your bujo for self-care, sign up for my email list to receive free journaling prompts and printable quotes for your bujo. I’ll be adding more freebies, so check your inbox for updates!

Subscribe

Subscribe for updates and free printables!




Bullet Journal Supplies

Here are my favorite tools for making my weekly layouts in my bujo. If you purchase anything from my links, I’ll earn a small commission at no extra fee for you. To read my full disclosure statement, click here.

How to Use Your Bullet Journal for Self-Care: Social Care
How to Use Your Bullet Journal for Self-Care: Social Care

How to Use Your Bujo for Self-Care: Environmental Care

7 Ways to Use Your Bujo for Self Care Environmental Care
7 Ways to Use Your Bujo for Self Care Environmental Care

Welcome to Week 5: Environmental Care of the Bullet Journal Challenge series! In case you missed it, the #BulletJournalChallenge announced on www.bulletjournal.com is the perfect way to find inspiration for all the ways you can use a bujo for self-care. The details of the challenge are here. My post about Week 4, emotional care, can be found here.

This week’s topic is environmental care, which includes:

  • Home
  • Embracing nature

This post contains affiliate links to Amazon.com.  If you purchase products from these links, I’ll earn a small commission at no extra cost to you.  To read my full disclosure statement, click here.

Below are seven ways you can use your bujo for taking care of your environmental care needs.

Home

1. Cleaning Schedules

There are a few ways you could use your bullet journal to keep your cleaning routine. You could make a separate page to refer to your master cleaning schedule for weekly and monthly tasks. I find it helpful to have my daily cleaning tasks as a part of my to-do list in my bujo, mixed in with my other action items for the day. Alternatively, in your weekly spread, you could make a checklist of all the cleaning tasks you want to accomplish that week and check off each item as you complete them. I personally can’t make my cleaning routines a floating list because I know if I don’t schedule my tasks for a certain day, I won’t get it done.

To simplify my cleaning routine, I follow Clean Mama‘s routine. As a blogger, writer, and mother, I don’t have a lot of time to devote to cleaning my house, so her easy-to-follow schedule helps me stay on track even on my busy days. I won’t go into her whole system because she does an amazing job of explaining it here.

This book has changed how I look at cleaning (and I’m not a domestic goddess.) If you purchase through my link, I’ll earn a small commission at no extra cost to you. I appreciate your support!

2. Decluttering Challenges

If you’re participating in an online decluttering challenge or you’re inspired by Marie Kondo’s book, The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up: The Japanese Art of Decluttering and Organizing,  you could make a habit tracker specifically for completing the challenge. This would work for either its own separate layout and page or within your daily and weekly pages.

Weekly layout in bullet journal
My habit tracker this week includes a 10 minute declutter and on each day of the week, I have my daily cleaning task listed.

3. Home Projects/Spring Cleaning

If your home is about to undergo major renovations or you want to do a deep spring cleaning, you could make a separate layout to keep track of the projects you want to complete. If you’re feeling creative, you could draw the outline of a house and write in the tasks specific to each room.

My husband and I are looking to move in the near future, so I will be creating a layout based off of all of our to-do lists for getting our current house ready to list and our requirements for our new home. Stay tuned for updates to this post for pictures of the layout!

Embracing Nature

5. Observations from Walks

If you want to incorporate mindfulness with a healthy habit, recording your observations from going on walks is a great practice, whether you go walking alone in trails or in a more urban environment downtown. You could journal conversations you overheard, animals you spotted, or unusual plants you saw while out. If you’re unafraid of getting your bullet journal messy, you could keep pressed flowers or dried leaves from your walks taped to your pages.

6. Ideas for Beautifying Your Neighborhood

You could create a page for brainstorming ideas about volunteer opportunities, charities, or small acts you could do to help make your neighborhood a better place. You could break down the ideas by time commitment, from simple ideas such as bringing a trash bag with you on your next walk or visit the park to pick up litter to bigger projects, such as volunteering for cleaning up along the highway or a community volunteer day event.

7. Waste Reduction Ideas

If you’re looking to reduce the amount of waste you produce, you could devote a page about your goals. Break down your goal, whether it’s zero waste or simply wanting to produce less trash per week, into actionable steps. Start small, and give yourself time to reach your goals. You could use a habit tracker to keep yourself accountable while you work towards your end goal.

The Bullet Journal Challenge Series

If you’re interested in participating in the challenge, I’ve listed each week’s topic here:

If you’re on Instagram, make sure you follow the hashtag #BulletJournalChallenge for inspiration! Also, if you’re reading this long after the challenge is over, I encourage you to do the challenge anyway.  Self-care is so important to your overall well-being, and it’s never too late to start taking better care of yourself.

More Tools to Use Your Bujo for Self-Care

If you’re looking for more inspiration for using your bujo for self-care, sign up for my email list to receive free journaling prompts and printable quotes for your bujo. I’ll be adding more freebies, so check your inbox for updates!

Subscribe

Subscribe for updates + free printables




7 Ways to Use Your Bujo for Self Care Environmental Care
7 Ways to Use Your Bujo for Self Care Environmental Care

 

How to Use Your Bujo for Self-Care: Emotional Care

4 Ways to Use Your Bujo for Self-Care: Emotional Care
4 Ways to Use Your Bujo for Self-Care: Emotional Care

Welcome to Week 4: Emotional Care of the Bullet Journal Challenge series! In case you missed it, the #BulletJournalChallenge announced on www.bulletjournal.com is the perfect way to find inspiration for all the ways you can use a bujo for self-care. The details of the challenge are here. My post about Week 3, psychological care, can be found here.

This week’s topic is psychological care, which includes:

  • Things that bring you joy
  • How you reset
  • Tracking experiences and how you feel

This post contains affiliate links to Amazon.com.  If you purchase products from these links, I’ll earn a small commission at no extra cost to you.  To read my full disclosure statement, click here.

Below are four ways you can use your bujo for taking care of your emotional care needs.

Mood Trackers

There are a few different ways you could incorporate mood trackers in your bujo. You could choose to record your mood in a tracker on your daily pages, weekly spreads, monthly pages, or make a separate page for tracking your mood for the entire year. I was inspired to use the My Year in Pixels idea that can be found on Pinterest and Instagram. Every day, I color each square the corresponding shade for each mood and as the year goes on, it’ll be fun to see all the different colors. So far, it has been a colorful start to my year!

My Year in Pixels
My Year in Pixels is already turning out to be so colorful. I can’t wait to see what it looks like by the end of the year!

Other Habit Trackers

One of my habits this week in my tracker simply says, “breathe” to remind me to pause at least once a day and spend a few minutes each day only focusing on my breathing. This sounds easy enough, but it’s shockingly an easy thing to forget when you’re busy and taking care of two small children as I am. I find that after I do this mini-meditation I’m much calmer and relaxed.

If you find yourself frequently stressed and think that you don’t even have a few minutes to just breathe, then it’s even more important that you take the time to do it. You’ll thank yourself later. If the idea of keeping track of habits sounds too consuming to you, please read about how I keep my habit tracking stress-free here.

Weekly Layout for Emotional Care
This week’s habit tracker was all about emotional care. Even the simple reminder to take a moment to focus on only breathing has been so helpful.

Make Lists

I’m a big fan of list making. I think it’s a fun, simple way to journal and you can include so much information without it taking a lot of time. Lists you could make for your emotional self-care include:

  • Things that bring you joy, even if it’s as simple as a going on a walk.
  • How to reset your day when your feeling stressed or going badly for you. You could give yourself quick fixes like a playlist that always cheers you up or write down books to read when you’re feeling low.
  • Favorite memories of the month.
  • Funny quotes you overhead while out and about.

Document Your Days

Here are a few ways you could add documentation to your bujo:

  • Leave space in your daily or weekly pages to leave journal entries. If you’re worried that journaling every day sounds like a huge time commitment, write only a single line about your day each day.
  • Write a Week in Review either on your weekly pages or directly after the weekly pages. Jot down the highs and lows of the week, along with your favorite memories and events you attended.
  • Make pages entirely devoted to journaling. Index your entries by topic so that later you can quickly find pages about certain topics. You can revisit how you felt about certain days or events if you take the time to do this.
  • Take pictures with either a Polaroid Snap or print the ones from your phone and place them in your bujo with a dated note about the picture.

Here are my favorite tools for documenting pictures to include in my bujo and scrapbook. If you purchase anything from my links, I’ll earn a small commission at no extra fee for you. To read my full disclosure statement, click here.

The Bullet Journal Challenge Series

If you’re interested in participating in the challenge, I’ve listed each week’s topic here:

If you’re on Instagram, make sure you follow the hashtag #BulletJournalChallenge for inspiration! Also, if you’re reading this long after the challenge is over, I encourage you to do the challenge anyway.  Self-care is so important to your overall well-being, and it’s never too late to start taking better care of yourself.

More Tools to Use Your Bujo for Self-Care

If you’re looking for more inspiration for using your bujo for self-care, sign up for my email list to receive free journaling prompts and printable quotes for your bujo. I’ll be adding more freebies, so check your inbox for updates!Subscribe

Subscribe for updates + free printables!




4 Ways to Use Your Bujo for Self-Care: Emotional Care
4 Ways to Use Your Bujo for Self-Care: Emotional Care

How to Use Your Bujo for Self-Care: Psychological Care

4 Ways to Use Your Bujo for Self Care: Psychological Care
4 Ways to Use Your Bujo for Self Care: Psychological Care

Welcome to Week 3: Psychological Care of the Bullet Journal Challenge series! In case you missed it, the #BulletJournalChallenge announced on www.bulletjournal.com is the perfect way to find inspiration for all the ways you can use a bujo for self-care. The details of the challenge are here. My post about Week 2, physical care, can be found here.

This week’s topic is psychological care, which includes:

  • Relaxation
  • Creativity
  • What can you say “no” to?
  • How do you prioritize self-care when life is crazy?

This post contains affiliate links to Amazon.com.  If you purchase products from these links, I’ll earn a small commission at no extra cost to you.  To read my full disclosure statement, click here.

Below are four ways you can use your bujo for taking care of your psychological needs.

Habit Trackers

The most straightforward way to use your bujo for psychological care is to use your habit trackers to keep track of which creative pursuits or even simply track relaxation as a reminder to take some time to yourself. If creative pursuits are something you enjoy, but you haven’t made them part of your routine yet, start small. Don’t feel like you have to add a lot of new habits in one week. If you read the previous posts in the series, you know that I don’t track too many habits at a time. To read more about why I only track a few habits at a time, click here.

This week, the habits I made sure to include in my tracker were journaling, sketching, and writing fiction. I made a point of distinguishing writing fiction instead of only saying “write,” because I wanted to make the effort to work on my fiction projects that have had to sit on the back burner for the last few months (more on this later.)

Psychological Care
This week helped me focus on my “why”: why I blog, why I spend my time the way I do, and why I love to create.

Make a Not-To-Do List

Are you someone who needs to quit worrying about something or are you a chronic people pleaser? If so, this suggestion can be a powerful tool to help you. Make a page dedicated to all the things you want to stop doing. For example, you could write “I’m going to stop worrying about what people think of me” or “I’m going to stop putting myself last.” You could also use the Not-To-Do List to help you with a positive self-image and write “I’m going to stop feeling bad about my body.” The stories you tell yourself are more powerful than you may realize. Make sure the stories you are telling yourself help you become your best self.

Make a Page Dedicated to Relaxation

You could make a list of all the things you like to do to relax, including a list of books or shows you watch to help you unwind. In addition, you could list your essentials for relaxation, whether it’s bath bombs, magazines, favorite pair of cozy socks, or a peaceful coloring book. After you make your checklist of essentials, you could make a step-by-step guide to how you relax to look back on next time you’re feeling tense.

Here are a few of my essentials for relaxing. If you purchase products from these links, I’ll earn a small commission at no extra cost to you.  To read my full disclosure statement, click here.

More Ways to Use Your Bujo for Psychological Care

If life has been chaotic for you, keeping up with self-care and your own well-being can easily be neglected. If you fall into the trap of taking care of everyone else but ignoring your own needs, then you should consider making a “When was the last time I…” page in your bujo. At the top of the page, write out the phrase, “When was the last time I…” and underneath it, list out some of your favorite self-care practices that you have a hard time remembering to do. Next to each item listed, leave room for you to write the date after you complete it. The next time you feel worn out, return to the page and check to see if you’ve been neglecting yourself again.

I could have used a list like this over the last few months as my life became incredibly busy. I write fiction, but I was constantly letting my other responsibilities take priority over writing. It was making me feel restless, but I wasn’t aware at the time that was what was bothering me. During this week’s challenge, I revisited writing fiction, and though at first, I struggled to put pen to paper, afterward I felt much better than I had in weeks. Making a “When was the last time I…” page is high on my to-do list of collections to include in my bujo.

The Bullet Journal Challenge Series

If you’re interested in participating in the challenge, I’ve listed each week’s topic here:

If you’re on Instagram, make sure you follow the hashtag #BulletJournalChallenge for inspiration! Also, if you’re reading this long after the challenge is over, I encourage you to do the challenge anyway.  Self-care is so important to your overall well-being, and it’s never too late to start taking better care of yourself.

More Tools to Use Your Bujo for Self-Care

If you’re looking for more inspiration for using your bujo for self-care, sign up for my email list to receive free journaling prompts and printable quotes for your bujo. I’ll be adding more freebies, so check your inbox for updates!

Subscribe

Subscribe for updates + free printables!




4 Ways to Use Your Bujo for Self Care: Psychological Care
4 Ways to Use Your Bujo for Self Care: Psychological Care

5 Things I Wish I Knew Before Starting My Bujo

Bujo
5 Things I Wish I Knew Before Starting My Bujo

Are you new to the bujo community? Did you know you can use any notebook to start your first one? Here are a few things I wish I would have known before starting my own bujo. If you don’t know what a bujo (bullet journal) is, I highly recommend going to read about it from the creator of the system, Ryder Carroll, here, and coming back to read the rest of this post.

This post contains affiliate links to Amazon.com.  If you purchase products from these links, I’ll earn a small commission at no extra cost to you.  To read my full disclosure statement, click here.

1. You Can Use Any Notebook (But Size Matters!)

If you scroll through Instagram or Pinterest for bujos, more often than not, you’ll see layouts in gorgeous notebooks, journals, and traveler’s notebooks. However, before you go out and splurge on an expensive journal, you can test out the bujo system in any spare notebook, even one you’ve already written in! The system works as long as you use it and you can make it work in anything as long as you have a key, an index, and you keep up with your pages. If you are wondering if the bujo system works for you, this is a great way to test it out. My first bujo was in an old journal that I repurposed and covered (the original cover didn’t suit me.)

One thing to keep in mind when you’re ready to purchase your bujo’s new home is the amount of space you’ll have to work with for each page. For 2018, I switched to a traveler’s notebook and it’s much more narrow than the Moleskine journal I was used to during the summer of 2017. It does impact how I make layouts. So far, I’m loving my traveler’s notebook, but there are pros and cons to using it for my bujo. (I’ll likely make a post in the future about this.)

2. Mistakes Can and Will Happen (and It’s Okay!)

It’s easy to be intimidated by the picture-perfect layouts of other people’s bujos on Pinterest and Instagram. One thing to keep in mind when you’re looking at other people’s pictures online is that you are seeing the final, polished product. There’s no real way to know if the person who posted that beautiful spread got it right on the first try or if it was the 20th attempt at the same page. Really, though, it shouldn’t matter how many tries it took someone or if they are naturally gifted. Each person’s bujo tells a unique story about their user. You do not have to be artistically inclined to successfully keep a bujo. No matter what your skill level it, it’s fun to watch your growth as you continue to use your pages and improve over time.

I made a short video about some of the mistakes I’ve already made in my bujo this year. You can click on the link here or watch it below. (I apologize for the abrupt ending; my baby was waking up and I wanted to get to him before he was loud enough to be heard in the video.)

3. Be Mindful of Where You Keep Collections

If you watched the video, you’ll know that one of the mistakes I made early on in my traveler’s notebook was keeping my Year in Pixels page in the same insert as my weekly layouts. I’ll go through this insert long before the year is over, so I’ll either need to redraw it in another insert only for collections or simply cut out the page and put it in the other insert.

Whether you are using a traditional journal or a traveler’s notebook like mine, making use of your index and recording each page number for the collections you keep in your bujo will also spare you a lot of headaches trying to figure out where everything is.

4. The Amount of Freedom

Your bujo can be anything you need it to be and you can customize it however you want. You could go minimalist with the layout or go all out with detailed drawings, stickers, and washi tape. There are no wrong answers for the amount decorating you can do. You can also make collections for anything and everything you can think of. I have seen collections for books to read, 30 Day Challenges, Netflix series to watch, self-care routines, and all kinds of health trackers, just to name a few.

Even if you don’t feel like making a fully decorated page but you want to jot down ideas or journal, you can do that on your pages, too. Just give it a place in your index so that you can refer to it later. It’ll help you gain perspective to go back and read your pages long after you’ve written them.

5. It’s Never Too Late to Change Things

The part about having a bujo I love the most is that if something isn’t working for me, I can change it whenever I want. If you are the kind of person who struggles to stick with one planner the whole year through, a bujo may be the answer your looking for. If you suddenly decide you don’t like horizontal layouts for your weekly spreads, you can switch to a vertical layout next week. You can freely experiment with the pages and learn what works for you. If a habit tracking system isn’t working for you, you don’t have to keep using the same tracker. I talk about changing up my habit trackers here.

It’s also worth noting you can start a bujo whenever you want to. You don’t have to wait for January 1st to start. You could start in the middle of April and not have to worry about wasting pages. You’d start keeping track of the dates from the day you start, not the beginning of the year.

If you are brand new to the bujo community, what would you like to know about keeping a bujo? If you’re a veteran, what would you like to have known? Let me know in the comments. I’d love to read your questions!

If you are ready to buy a bujo, here are some of my recommendations. If you purchase anything through my links, I’ll earn a small commission, at no extra cost to you. I appreciate your support!

 

 

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Bujo
5 Things I Wish I Knew Before Starting My Bujo

The Sunshine Blogger Award

blogger award
Sunshine Blogger Award

I’m breaking away from my usual format to share some fun news: Edel Pace, the creator of Pacemaker, has nominated me for The Sunshine Blogger Award, which is an honor given out by bloggers to fellow bloggers who write creative, positive, and inspiring content. The purpose is to showcase our community of bloggers and lift each other up. I’m deeply touched by the nomination!

Rules

  1. Thank blogger (s) who nominated you in the blog post and link back to their blog.
  2. Answer the 11 questions the blogger asked you.
  3. Nominate 11 new blogs to receive the award and write them 11 new questions.
  4. List the rules and display the Sunshine Blogger Award logo in your post and /or on your blog.

My Answers

1. Why did you start a blog?

I started Simply Kelsey Jo to launch a platform for me to become a free-lance writer and author. I want to use my blog to support my ability to do what I really want to do: take more writing workshops and write fiction. I would like to eventually self-publish, but when I factor in the costs of hiring an editor and cover artist, it can become expensive. The idea of asking someone to work for “exposure” is repulsive to me, so I’ve decided to use any money I make from free-lancing and the blog to go towards those costs.

I could have easily taken up any number of work from home jobs, but I decided I wanted to contribute towards other people’s well-being and inspire creativity in their lives. It’s my hope that my blog reaches people who need to know that it’s okay to embrace their imperfections and take life at a slower pace.

2. What is your favorite book (s)?

I’m a bibliophile, so this question is difficult for me to answer. My tastes in books are all over the place. I love Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury, the Lioness Quartet by Tamora Pierce, Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte, Neverwhere by Neil Gaiman, Alice and her Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Caroll, Frankenstein by Mary Shelley, and the Harry Potter series by J.K. Rowling, among many others (just ask any of the poor souls who have ever helped me move.)

3. What is your favorite post you’ve written?

My favorite post that I’ve written so far is Why You Should Do Morning Pages (Even if You’re Busy) because morning pages are so important to my routine. I owe so many insights into my personal life from showing up to write my morning pages. It’s a habit I think everyone should take up, even if they don’t consider themselves to be writers.

4. What is the most adventurous thing you’ve ever done?

I’m not the most adventurous type, to be honest. Skydiving, rock climbing, and the like are not my cup of tea. For me, starting up my blog and free-lance writing business is a huge adventure in itself!

5. Your favorite food is ____________.

It’s a tie between California Rolls, Cashew Chicken, and homemade potato soup. It really depends on the season and the mood I’m in.

6. What piece of advice would you give to a younger self?

Everything you are experiencing now is temporary. The experiences you are going through now will help shape your personality, but they do not have to define you. You are not bound to your past, so go forward and create your own future.

7. What is your favorite inspirational quote(s)?

“Comparison is the thief of joy” -Theodore Roosevelt

“You can’t use up creativity. The more you use, the more you have.” -Maya Angelou

  1. “You are allowed to be both a Masterpiece and a Work in Progress, simultaneously.” -Elizabeth Gilbert

For more of my favorite quotes, check out this post here.

8. A country/place you would like to visit.

I’ve wanted to go to Japan since I was a teenager. I’d love to arrange a visit to Studio Ghibli and their museum! Also on my list: Ireland, Scottland, Denmark, and the Netherlands. I’d love to go back to London and Cardiff someday, too. I haven’t traveled outside the U.S. much, but I’d like to visit more places!

9. What is your favorite season? Why?

Fall is my favorite season. If I could live in a state of perpetual autumn with the weather cool but not cold, comfortably wear boots every day, and enjoy warm comfort food, I’d be in heaven. Maybe I should add Portland, Oregon, to my list of places to visit? I’ve heard the weather there is similar to what I described. I love the clothes, the colors, and the food of fall. It also signals a time of change for me, even more so than the new year. It reminds me of that back to school feeling of new beginnings.

10. The one thing you’re most proud of.

I’m most proud of two things:

  1. Raising my two young children to the best of my abilities. My oldest is growing into a sweet, empathetic boy with a mischievous sense of humor and a contagious smile. My youngest is the happiest baby I’ve ever had the privilege to spend time with and I can’t wait to see what kind of person he becomes. I feel very blessed to be their mother.
  2. Pursuing my dreams of making a career out of my writing. It doesn’t even matter to me at this point if I succeed or fail because many people go their whole lives without even trying to make their dreams happen. It would be a huge disservice to both me and my family if I didn’t at least try to make my dreams happen.

11. Hard copies of books or an e-reader?

I will always prefer physical copies of books over an e-reader, even though when I do start publishing my longer fiction it will likely be in the form of e-books (simply for the sake of cost.) I love both the new and old book smells, the weight of the book in my hands, and being able to admire the cover art/spines on my bookshelves. I also find I retain information better when I read a physical copy versus something on a screen. I do see the appeal of e-books for their space-saving capabilities but I will always need my stacks of books. I hope that someday I place my own books on my shelves, too.

My Nominees

Though some of these bloggers write outside of the niches that I blog about, everyone on this list posts inspiring, positive, and creative content that leave me feeling better after reading it. In no particular order, here are my nominees for The Sunshine Blogger Award:

  1. Jen of The Paper Revival
  2. Alexandra of The Happy Life Formula
  3. Emma of Teaspoon of Nose
  4. Kalyn of Mascara and Grace
  5. Natalie of Towards Greater Things
  6. Ris of Finger Puppet Press
  7. Katie of She Embarks
  8. Fabiana of Nourish + Prosper
  9. Laura of The Mindful Momblographer
  10. Angela of The Pinky Project
  11. Sarah of Simple Happy Life

Questions for my Nominees

  1. Why do you blog?
  2. Are you an extrovert or introvert?
  3. What is your favorite way to spend a day off?
  4. How do you turn a bad day around?
  5. What songs are in your current playlist?
  6. What are you reading right now?
  7. What are your goals for 2018?
  8. Outside of blogging, what are your hobbies?
  9. Coffee, tea, both, or neither?
  10. Do you use a planner? What kind do you use and why?
  11. What is your favorite way to practice self-care?

Thank you again to Edel for the nomination.  If you are unfamiliar with her blog, she writes about using positivity to overcome obstacles, book reviews, and ordinary people making extraordinary changes. Nominees, please tag me on social media when you have your answers ready. I’d love to read your responses! Readers, please check out Edel’s blog and those of my nominees for more inspiration.

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How to Use Your Bullet Journal for Self-Care: Physical Care

Physical Care
4 Ways to Use Your Bujo For Self-Care: Physical Care

Welcome to Week 2: Physical Care of the Bullet Journal Challenge series! In case you missed it, the #BulletJournalChallenge announced on www.bulletjournal.com is the perfect way to find inspiration for all the ways you can use a bujo for self-care. The details of the challenge are here. My post about Week 1, personal care, can be found here.

This post contains affiliate links to Amazon.com and kawaiilands.com.  If you purchase products from these links, I may a small commission at no extra cost to you.  To read my full disclosure statement, click here.

This week’s topic is physical care. This includes:

  • Health
  • Fitness
  • Beauty
  • Nutrition

This an area of self-care that I struggle with, especially when I’m feeling stressed, sick, or tired. Physical care is always the first thing to go when I’m feeling overwhelmed, but the prompt this week is making me pause to consider why I do this. With that said, here are some ways that you can use your bujo for physical care, plus a few ways I’ve used mine.

Habit Tracking

The most obvious way you can use your bujo for physical care is to create habit trackers specifically for exercise, nutrition, beauty, and health. If keeping track of habits are new to you, or you’re trying to start a new habit, I highly recommend starting small. If you want to start exercising, but you haven’t been physically active for a long time, start with a smaller goal of exercising for 20 minutes or even simply walking around the block a few times a week. The last thing you want to do when building a new habit is to burn out before you even get started.

Other habits you could track are your water intake, keeping track of medications or vitamins, days you use a skincare routine, or if fixing your hair or makeup is something you’d like to do, but don’t always do because of time or energy, you could keep track of that as well. It’s important that you don’t overdo it trying to track too much all at once if habit tracking is new to you. I talk extensively about why keeping simple habit trackers is a good idea here, but the main take away is you don’t want to sabotage your attempts at building good habits by making habit tracking a chore.

Physical Care
I keep my weekly habit tracker simple, functional, and small. If you want your own Totoro pencil case, watercolor washi tape, or cat pencils, go to www.kawaiilands.com and use my code simply10 for 10% off your order.

Morning and Evening Routines

As part of a challenge I participated in over the summer of 2017, I created a self-care planner in a Moleskin journal and I loved it. I  still use it to this day, though it’s starting to get full and I’m in the process of migrating important pages from the self-care planner to my traveler’s notebook. One of the things I made a page for a morning and evening routine. As you can see in the picture below, I haven’t quite decided on an evening routine yet (I’m still figuring out what works for me now that I have two children) but I wrote down an ideal morning routine.

Physical Care
When I finally figure out an evening routine that works for me, I’ll update my page or I’ll migrate it to my current traveler’s notebook.

If you’re at a loss for morning and evening routines, here are a few of my favorite ideas:

For mornings:

  • Morning pages
  • Eat breakfast
  • Prayer/devotion/mantra/setting intentions for the day
  • Exercise (walking, yoga, dancing, YouTube workout, etc.)
  • Spend five minutes reviewing your bujo and plans for the day
  • Listen to an inspiring TED talk (either as you get ready or on your commute)

For evenings:

  • No screen time two hours before bed
  • Journaling
  • Coloring
  • Reading
  • Exercise (walking, yoga, dancing, YouTube workout, etc.)
  • Morning pages”  (if your mornings are truly too crazy, you can write your pages at night)
  • Prepare for the next day (lay out clothes, prep meals, pack bag, etc.)
  • Go to bed at a reasonable hour

Make Resource Pages

A resource page would be like having a physical version of a Pinterest board in your bujo. You could list favorite exercise YouTube videos, your favorite health and fitness blogs, favorite healthy recipes, or books and magazines you want to read (or have read) about wellness. You could also make a list of challenges you want to partake in or accounts to follow that will help you with your health goals.

Exercise

Aside from using a habit tracker to hold yourself accountable to an exercise routine, you could print off or draw exercise routines and store them in a pocket on a page. I did this with some yoga routines that I found on Pinterest and I like how convenient it is to simply remove whatever routine I want to use. I don’t have to use my phone or computer to look up the routine, which for me, is a huge bonus because then I don’t get distracted before I start exercising.

Physical Care
I love using Pinterest to look for simple but effective yoga routines. Feel free to follow my boards here!

If you want to keep printed out routines in your bujo, too, here are some of my recommendations. If you purchase anything through my links, I’ll earn a small commission at no extra cost to you. I appreciate your support!

The Challenge

For me, the hardest part of this week’s challenge is actually following through with the pages I’ve made for physical care.  I don’t know how many times I’ve tried tracking exercise in my bujo, only to have it slide because of feeling too tired. I don’t personally keep track of the amount of sleep I get each night at this stage in my life because, at the time of this writing, I have a six-month-old that still likes to night feed. I talk more about how I decide which things I track here.

However, the Bullet Journal Challenge series has me rethinking how I feel about physical care. While exercise may not be a top priority for me, I do enjoy yoga and going on walks, so I’m going to make an effort to find ways to include my two young children in my physical care. Realistically, that is the only way I’m really going to make any sort of exercise routine work for me because if I have a moment to myself, I’d rather be writing, crafting, reading, or gaming (really, anything but exercise.) One thing that has started working for me is using playlists on YouTube to have dance parties with my three-year-old and finding mother and baby yoga videos to do with my 6-month-old.

The #BulletJournalChallenge Series

If you’re interested in participating in the challenge, I’ve listed each week’s topic here:

If you’re on Instagram, make sure you follow the hashtag #BulletJournalChallenge for inspiration! Also, if you’re reading this long after the challenge is over, I encourage you to do the challenge anyway.  Self-care is so important to your overall well-being, and it’s never too late to start taking better care of yourself.

More Tools to Use Your Bujo for Self-Care

If you’re looking for more inspiration for using your bujo for self-care, sign up for my email list to receive free journaling prompts and printable quotes for your bujo. I’ll be adding more freebies, so check your inbox for updates!

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Do you use your bujo to help with physical self-care? Do you have any tips on following through with your routines? I’d love to hear your advice in the comment section!

Physical Care
4 Ways to Use Your Bujo for Self-Care: Physical Care

How to Use Your Bullet Journal for Self-Care: Personal Care

Personal Care
How to Use Your Bujo for Self-Care

Are you making the most out of your bullet journal? One of the best parts of keeping a bujo is that you can easily use it as a tool for self-care. The #BulletJournalChallenge announced on www.bulletjournal.com is the perfect way to find inspiration for all the ways you can use a bujo for self-care. The details of the challenge are here.

Since I’m participating in the challenge, I was inspired to write a series about it. For the next eight weeks, I’ll go in-depth about the different aspects of self-care you can make pages for in your bujo. This week’s topic is personal care, which includes:

  • Journaling as self-care
  • What you enjoy doing for your “me time”
  • Ways to treat yourself
  • Creating lists for ways to turn around a bad day, morning/evening routines, and other self-care related lists.

Ways You Can Use Your Bujo for Personal Care

Journaling

My favorite way to use my bujo for self-care is the journaling section of my traveler’s notebook.  Sometimes, I’ll decorate the pages, but this space is supposed to be for my benefit, so if I only want to write, I’ll use the pages either for a brain-dump or a regular journal entry.  If I’m feeling stuck or looking for inspiration, I use a journaling prompt.

Personal Care pages
Here’s my insert for journal entries in my traveler’s notebook.

Listing

Another way you can use your bujo for personal care is to keep lists. Some people like to make lists of things to do when they’re having a bad day, morning routines, evening routines, or even things that make them happy. I find that having a list of things I’d like to do on an ideal day off not only gives me something fun to daydream about but when I do have a rare day to myself, I already have an idea of what I’d like to do. I don’t waste any time figuring how I want to spend the day, only to have it end before I could make the most of it.

Personal Care
I started a separate journal in July 2017 for self-care. This is one of my favorite list pages.

Habit Trackers

Finally, another way to use your bujo for personal care is to use your habit tracker to keep up with your self-care habits.  I talk about habit trackers more in this post here. Currently, all of my habits I’m tracking relate to self-care. One of the things I’m tracking this week is making sure that I journal. If I don’t plan on time to journal or keep track when I do it, it becomes easy to let it slide. If I’m not keeping up with my morning pages, I also include a  spot in my habit tracker for doing those as well.

Personal Care
My weekly habit tracker isn’t elaborate, but it’s effective. I like having my weekly tracker on the same page as the layout so that I can see everything at a glance.

The #BulletJournalChallenge Series

If you’re interested in participating in the challenge, I’ve listed each week’s topic here:

If you’re on Instagram, make sure you follow the hashtag #BulletJournalChallenge for inspiration! Also, if you’re reading this long after the challenge is over, I encourage you to do the challenge anyway.  Self-care is so important to your overall well-being, and it’s never too late to start taking better care of yourself.

More Tools to Use Your Bujo for Personal Care

If you’re looking for more inspiration for using your bujo for self-care, sign up for my email list to receive free journaling prompts and printable quotes for your bujo. I’ll be adding more freebies, so check your inbox for updates!

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How do you use your bujo for personal care? Let me know in the comments. I’d love to hear about it!

Personal Care
How to Use Your Bujo for Self-Care: Personal Care

Ten Kawaii Products to Brighten Your Bujo + Exclusive Discount Code {ad}

10 Kawaii Products to Brighten Your Bujo
10 Kawaii Products to Brighten Your Bujo

I absolutely love cute animes, especially Sailor Moon, Little Witch Academia, and Studio Ghibli movies. When Kawaii Lands reached out to me about being an affiliate for their adorable products, I jumped at the chance. It makes me so happy that they combine my love of all things kawaii with planner and bujo supplies!  Here’s a Top 10 list of my favorite products that I’m currently coveting:

This post contains affiliate links.  If you purchase products from these links, I may earn a small commission or earn free/discounted products at no extra cost to you.  To read my full disclosure statement, click here.

1.) Kawaii Totoro Plush Pencil Case

Totoro Pencil Case
My oldest would also love this pencil case- he loves My Neighbor Totoro! Photo credit: Kawaii Lands

My Neighbor Totoro has a special place in my heart. When my oldest was only 4 months old, I had that movie on while I was holding him and for the first time, he reacted to something I was watching. He beamed the most beautiful baby smile when Totoro appeared on the screen and when he was teething, he loved it when I’d sing him the theme song. Now that he’s older, he loves to play pretend hunting for soot sprites and looking for Totoro up in trees. I love the peaceful, magical nature of the movie, and I’m so excited about accessorizing my planner materials with this case!

2.) Kaonashi No Face Gel Ink Pen 8-Pack

No Face Kawaii Lands pens
The different No Faces are so cute! Photo credit: Kawaii Lands

If you’re a fan of Studio Ghibli’s Spirited Away, you’ll love these No Face gel pens! I think the character of No Face was so well done in the movie and his design is great. He’s a happy medium between creepy and cute. I especially love the left-most pen where he’s holding up the heart.

3.) Japanese Totoro Gel Ink Pen

My Neighbor Totoro Pens from Kawaii Lands
I couldn’t resist these Totoro Pens. Photo credit: Kawaii Lands

Well, I had to buy the Totoro holding the umbrella pen to go with my new pencil case. I mean, look how happy it is! All of them are so cheerful. I think the Totoro holding up the No Face mask is also a cute touch.

4.) Superheroes Kids Gel Ink Pen 3-Pack

Super hero pens from Kawaii Lands
The grumpy Batman makes me laugh.Photo credit: Kawaii Lands

If superheroes are more your style than anime, these pens are a perfect fit! My family is big into superheroes (in fact, my husband co-owns a comic book store) and we make a point of watching all of the superhero movies when they come out to theaters.

5.) Kawaii Black Cat Gel Ink Pen

Cat Pens from Kawaii Lands
The one with the surprised eyes is my favorite. Photo credit: Kawaii Lands

There was a time when I was not a cat person, but then I met my husband and his two cats.  Spam and Princess immediately converted me into a cat person, and I haven’t looked back since!

6.) JIANWU Kawaii kitten Tail Mechanical Pencil 6-Pack

Cat pencils from Kawaii Lands
I couldn’t resist their expressions. Photo credit: Kawaii Lands

I know, more cats. But look at them! Their little tails and faces make me smile. This six-pack of mechanical pencils is perfect for any cat lover.

7.) Zebra Midliner Double-Sided Highlighter 5-Pack

Zebra Midliner Double Sided Highlighter 5-Pack
Look at all the color possibilities! Photo credit: Kawaii Lands

I couldn’t add these highlighters to my cart fast enough! I’m very excited to make some cute layouts with these colors.

8.) Northern Light Washi Tape

Northern Lights Washi Tape from Kawaii Lands
These colors remind me of Sailor Moon’s palette. Photo credit: Kawaii Lands

Washi tape is my favorite accessory for my bujo pages. This one caught my eye because of its beautiful colors and serene design. It went in my shopping cart, too.

9.) Flamingo Love Washi Tape

Flamingo washi tape from Kawaii Lands
I have used this washi tape so many times in my listers journal. I love it! Photo credit: Kawaii Lands

I have an affinity for flamingos. I saw a Pin on Pinterest a few years ago that said, “Majestically Awkward” with a picture of a flamingo attached and it resonated with me. My husband surprised me last Mother’s Day with a beautiful metal sculpture of a flamingo for our yard because he knows how happy they make me.

10.) Lovely Japanese Sketchbook 6-Colors

Studio Ghibli Sketchbooks from Kawaii Lands
These covers are gorgeous! Photo credit: Kawaii Lands

These Studio Ghibli-themed sketchbooks are beautiful. It makes me happy to see one of my favorite films, Howl’s Moving Castle, on one of the covers. Of course, I love the My Neighbor Totoro one, too!

Special Discount Code for You!

Kawaii Lands generously gave me an exclusive promo code, simply10, for my readers to use for 10% off their purchases. Just type it in at check out, or you can use my link, here. Bonus: they offer free international shipping! The products I showcased in this post are a small sample of all the cute items available at Kawaii Lands, so make sure to visit their site!

Kawaii Stationery
Make sure to use my discount code simply10 at checkout!

This post contains affiliate links.  If you purchase products from these links, I may earn a small commission or earn free/discounted products at no extra cost to you.  To read my full disclosure statement, click here.

Work With Me!

Do you have a product that you’d like for me to review? Send me an email at kelsey@simplykelseyjo.com and we can discuss our options.