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Simple Tricks to Start Effective New Habits: BuJo

For Millennials and Gen Z alike, BuJo, or “bullet journaling” has become all the rage. The aesthetically pleasing, organized journaling setup started on Instagram, and millions of people use this method to plan, reflect, and write in journals. 

Bullet journaling has been said to be an organizational tactic, a mindfulness practice, and a method of meditation. It has been equated to leading to more productive daily lives, and has caught on rapidly, especially when people have more time to dedicate to self-improvement. 

A bullet journal is a mix of planner, journal, and meditation—it seeks to help with productivity, procrastination, and goal planning. The exciting facet is the DIY customization aspect, which helps people to tailor their BuJo to their needs. 

Need help with how to start one during quarantine? Here’s our advice in a New York Minute: 


1. Grab a journal with blank or dotted pages 

This is the jumping-off point for a successful bullet journal. Some good options are Moleskine, Leuchtturm 1917, and Shinola, though any blank or dotted paged journal will work just fine. It is up to each individual if they prefer blank pages or dotted pages. The typical BuJo is with dotted pages, but plain pages work just as well! 


2. Time for set up 

When setting up a bullet journal, one should ask themself what they hope to gain from their journal and what their goals are. Some common features are an index or a table of contents to help keep organized, a “future log” to dedicate to plans and long term goals, a “monthly log” of goals and intentions per month, and a daily log or To-Do lists. 


3. Figure out your own shorthand and symbol usage 

Each bullet journalist has their own shorthand which makes sense to them and uses their own array of symbols and images they use to mean specific things. Whether you’re using asterisks, bullets, hearts, stars, or exclamation points, get organized with your shorthand and symbolism so you can retain cohesive writing throughout your BuJo. 


4. Collect your tools

Some BuJo writers use specific colors, pens, or markers to help organize and make their BuJo aesthetically pleasing. Others prefer black ink or natural colors. Decide what you’d like to write with—from felt tips to pens and decide if you’ll utilize stickers or colored tapes to help organize as well. 


5. Get started!

Don’t feel overwhelmed to be perfectly organized or to do BuJo “correctly”. There is no right way to start a BuJo. Instead, do what serves YOU! The purpose of a BuJo is to promote reflection, meditation, and organization, tailored to a specific individual. Don’t forget to be creative, try new things, and use your BuJo for whatever you need at this moment.

Featured Image by distelfliege on Flickr

Attribution 2.0 Generic (CC BY 2.0)

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