After more than a year of bullet journal obsession, for 2018 I decided it was time to put down my Leuchtturm and stop bullet journalling. Here is why I stopped, and how I’m keeping myself organized instead.
Some links in this post are affiliate links, which means that I may receive a small commission if you click or purchase an item.
I had a well documented love affair with bullet journaling. I actually first discovered blogging through bullet journaling, and my introduction to bullet journaling was the first post on Xoxo, Rosana more than a year ago!
Where it All Went Wrong
I shared it with my friends, encouraging them to start their own and creating my own bullet journaling community both at school and online. I maintained that it would never be too much work to spend time making the pages look beautiful, using every single dot on the page.
However, when I started my job this summer, I realized that my bullet journal had become too pretty, and always had to be picture-ready for the blog and the instagram. I started carrying around extra notebooks for each of my projects, and my bag started getting heavy.
When my job ended, I decided to just carry a thin, Rifle Paper Co. notebook to collect my thoughts during the few weeks between my job ending and school starting. It was invaluable, so by the time classes rolled around, I put my bullet journal back in my bag along with the everything notebook.
And then I didn’t touch my bullet journal. I carried it around in my bag every day until November, when I decided to switch bags and just left both of notebooks in the old backpack for the rest of the quarter.
This year, my school switched learning management systems from Chalk to Canvas, which has a really comprehensive assignment tracking and submission calendar, complete with alerts and google calendar integration. I actually happened to have done a project for a class last Spring that explored the features Canvas offers, so I knew how to make it easy to follow along with the assignments online.
Also, most classes have a regular schedule of submission dates, and halfway through the quarter, I usually have a groove during the week. I don’t need to schedule meetings with study groups because we all know that we’re working together on the problem set the night before its due.
For social events, interviews, and other meetings, I would just use my google calendar. Even while bullet journaling, I always included meetings and classes in the google calendar because the notification helps me make sure I will actually be where I said I would be.
I Bought a Real Planner
One of my favorite parts about starting a new year is getting to look at all the new 2018 planners. I’ve always exclusively gone shopping for calendars in September with the start of the academic year, but this time when I ran across one I actually loved, I decided to buy it.
I bought the gold stripe, 5×8 Day Designer planner, and I’m obsessed with it! Each day is on its own page, which I need because I’m juggling 4 classes, summer job applications, and some very exciting new projects!! On the left side of the page is a vertical schedule for the day and on the right is a list of to-dos.
Mine has a top-three section at the very top, which makes it really easy for me to prioritize my tasks. It also has a daily quote and at the bottom, it even provides a spot for a gratitude log. It has monthly tabs, and has held up well in my bag over last month. Every month has a grid view of the whole month so I can include important events like tests. My only complaint is that there isn’t an easy way to immediately turn to the date, but I fixed that with a paperclip that I keep moving through the week.
I am still using my Google calendar and the Canvas integration, but with so much going on right now I can’t see myself going back to tracking all my to dos in a messy notebook or just following along online. The only other permanent pieces in my bag are my laptop, my charger bag, my water bottle, and my phone.
After a couple of crazy busy months, I have closed my leuchhturm for now. Although I can’t promise I’ll never pick it up again, there’s so much in store for the next year that I can’t wait to live my 25th hour lifestyle to the fullest and share it with you.
Are you still bullet journaling? How do you track everything you’re doing?
Let me know on Twitter @xoxorosana_blog!