Bullet Journal reboot

Even though we’ve been under quarantine, I’ve been busy. Today, I started to re-build my bullet journal after a pause. For me, the bullet journal is a tool of self-discovery, self-management and self-discipline.

I started bullet journaling last September as a means of achieving more of what I desired, instead of reacting to my industry and its whims. New to bullet journaling, my journal is far from perfect…like me.

My focus today, in prepping my bullet-journal, was “Where am I now?” I’ve changed, the world has changed. My journal needs to reflect those changes.

Things I’ve learned:

  1. Less is more. I used to have an 18 task to-do list. I trimmed it down to five today.
  2. I gave my permission to let go of what was not working. There’s a lot of should-s. There’s a lot of hype of around morning rituals, affirmations, etc. I am not trying to force myself to do something because it’s trendy. I am doing it because it works for me.
  3. No matter what I plan, the best things come when I yield and receive. I didn’t plan on attempting my first feature film this year. It wasn’t in the journal or the plan. Guess, what? 2020 has brought a few surprises. No matter what I plan, I trust that there’s a divine plan that’s working out for me too.
  4. Productivity is not a substitute for happiness. Yes, I can be productive, but I can be productively unhappy. That was the state of so many people prior to the pandemic. It’s time to be happy. I don’t have to pile on the projects, errands, and chores to prove that I deserve happiness.
  5. Habits and habituation are the building blocks of life. I am an unconventional person. I am a night owl. I am nerdilicious. There’s a lot of ways I don’t fit into the traditional “successful adult” paradigm. Yet, I am a successful adult and that’s because of my habits. One of the best things about bullet journaling is that it helps you encourage good habits. I’ve seen tremendous improvement in many areas.
  6. Just because you can carry the load doesn’t mean you should. A never-ending task list is a form of avoidance. The quarantine helped me face what all of those bullets were helping me avoid.

As we re-enter the new normal, I am keeping my journal more responsive. I am not demanding too much of myself. I am trying not to make my plans too elaborate too fast.

Photo by Jess Bailey on Pexels.com

Not Every Day Has to be a Big Day

Not every day has to be a big day.  I’m learning that, seemingly over and over again.  Sometimes, the smallest progress is the hardest gained.  Sometimes, the small details add up to something much bigger, like a pointillist painting or a mosaic.

I love thru-lines and themes and big picture thinking, but I am finding what is most healing and most grounding right now is to take a careful, close look at the day-to-day.  Some patterns smack us in the face and often those hurt, but what about the patterns we’re missing, simply because we’re not taking a close enough look?

When things and situations hurt, the temptation is to paint the wrong and the wrongdoers in very broad, caricature-like strokes.  It takes a lot of love and patience (mostly for and and with yourself) not to gloss over the painful details.  That’s why I recommend trying to check in with yourself daily.  one line a day journal

Some of us don’t have the time to journal several pages today, although that’s a wonderful practice that was made popular by Julia Cameron, author of The Artists Way.  When you have a lot going on, you may not be able to “steal” an hour away from work, which is why lately I’ve found that this One-Line-a-Day journal can snap you back into the present.  If you can’t steal an hour, steal a few moments just to check-in.