Don't you just love the flexibility of the Bullet Journal system? I keep changing it up. Not only every month, but even weekly sometimes! It's great that the pages are blank and I can create whatever layout and pages I need for the season I'm in. Here's a walk through my September setup.
Monthly Cover Page And Overview
So once again I have changed my bullet journal layout as I found some things just weren't working as well as they could. I quite like this new layout and might stick with it for a while. I've also reintroduced my colour coding system from last year and streamlined my daily layout.
I have been creating a cover page each month, and this is usually a bit arty, but then the rest is very functional and streamline.
Watch my videos: Lettering "September" & Decorating the page
You can see, in the photo above, my "plan ahead" monthly overview on the right. This is just a place to note any upcoming events, tasks or appointments and will be referred to throughout the month whenever I create a new weekly spread.
My Colour Coded System
You will see that different pages, although part of the same month, will have different colours. This is because I have assigned colours to certain elements of my life.
Anything to do with personal care is pink, activities are purple, chores are red, meal planning or notes regarding allergies etc are green, social media is yellow, and my weekly or daily pages are blue/teal. This is actually the colour code I used last year when I first started bullet journaling.
I had a very minimalist journal back then, only used one black pen and no decorations, but I had post-it tabs to mark the current location of my trackers and lists, so the colour coding was based on the colours of the post-it tabs - it was very useful and makes sense to me. It also means that now my pages for the month are not all the exact same colour, which was actually getting a bit boring.
This is my activities spread. On the left is my purple activities tracker, it includes activities I'd like to do each day. Obviously I cannot do all of that in one day, but when I feel good enough to do something or have an "I'm bored" moment, this is the page I come to find things I could do.
The list is in order of importance, starting with things I'd like to do daily first thing in the morning. Things like reading my Bible and praying.
After that I have my creative things like painting, drawing, lettering. After that I have listed the digital items like watching tutorials, blogging, etc. And lastly I have other fun activities like TV, puzzles and games, outings and helping my sister cook a meal - yes, that is super fun for me, but I can't manage it often.
Self Care Tracker
On the right I have the pink area for self care, this is where I keep track of when I bath, cut my nails, any beauty treatments and other personal care activities I want to keep track of.
When you can't get to these things regularly you can forget when the last time was, so having a tracker is actually quite helpful.
Below that is the red chore tracker. I cannot do much around the house, and many of these chores are done by others, but I keep track of them here so we can make sure they are regularly done due to my allergies. These are mainly things that need doing in my bedroom, like changing sheets, hoovering, dusting shelves, etc and at the bottom I have added watering plants because that is something I can do.
The tracker is simply a calendar and I colour the squares in with the appropriate colour if it's been done, it is left blank if I didn't do it. This is a very quick visual way of tracking things and they're all on one spread which makes it much easier to see how much activity I've done over all categories.
Blog And Art Logs
This is my yellow social media log, I just keep track of what I've published on the blog and a couple of times a month I log my instagram stats. I am not very good at consistently posting things, so I'm hoping this will help me keep track of progress and hopefully over time I will be able to fill this tracker in more. For now it serves as an encouragement.
The apricot art log is filled in pencil ahead of time with ideas of things I'd like to do, but as my ME/CFS is unpredictable, I cannot always do them. Now I only pen them in once I've done them. I do find having the pencil plan quite useful though, it saves me wondering what to draw or paint. There's lots of inspiration on the page!
Horizontal Weekly Spread
This is my teal weekly spread, the day to day notes and to-do lists and also the place I track a few things like weather, symptoms, feelings, water intake and steps I've walked that day. This is the spread that has gone through the most change over the last few months.
My weeks start on whichever day was the first day of the month, so this month it was a Friday. I then have Monday and Tuesdays together because that's my family's weekend due to work schedules. Since those days are reserved for family time, they are grouped together and don't usually have anything planned on those days.
You will notice that under each day there is a block. It contains the date, a weather doodle, my water tracker (six circles I colour in), my step counter which I fill in at the end of the day when I get into bed, and lastly there is my mood/symptom tracker.
My Mood & Symptom Tracker
I no longer write a paragraph about how I was feeling, detailing all my ailments - I found that exhausting and quite a negative process. I now have three circles on the right, representing my body, one for morning, one for midday and one for bed time. These are the times I take note of moods or symptoms.
I draw faces on the circles to depict my mood and have a series of symbols I draw around the circles for various symptoms, only keeping track of the most debilitating ones: pain, stiffness, itching, exhaustion/weakness and bad brain fog/confusion.
The symbols are things like a lightening bolt for pain, dots for itching, a spiral for cognitive difficulties, a Z for exhaustion, etc. This way it only takes a few seconds to draw these tiny symbols and I can move on with my day.
If you had a look at my July setup, you will have seen things like a reading log and menu planner.
I have decided not to track my reading as it is already in my purple activity tracker and my meals are now planned on a separate sheet from an old planner which is then torn out and stuck on the fridge where my sister can see it since she is the one who cooks all our meals. I found it redundant to have it in my journal too.
My journal continues to evolve. If you'd like to see all my latest journal layouts, click here.
Below you will find links to some of my favourite journaling supplies if you're interested in starting your own Bullet Journal.
Bullet Journal Supplies I Love
Images link to Amazon. *Affiliate links used* Thank you for your support!
Blendable Brush Pens
Small Brush Pens
Assorted Washi Tape
What About You?
- Do you use a Bullet Journal?
- Is your journal more minimalist or more artistic?
- What theme would you suggest for future September layouts?
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