Today I wanted to share with all of you my November bullet journal setup! The biggest difference this month is the move from my Leuchtturm1917 back into my Webster's Pages Color Crush A5 Planner. I like to jump back and forth from planner to planner; It really just all depends on what suits me and my lifestyle the best at the moment. In prior months, I was really into carrying my bullet journal around with me (thus needed something small and compact).
However, I have really been into decorating and embellishing my pages lately. Cute papers. Post it notes. STICKERS. Plus, its been an ongoing process to get my Color Crush planner fully decked out and up to par, so I think I'll be keeping cozy in it all winter long. We'll see how I feel in the spring.
EDIT: Check out the video version of this blog on my YouTube Channel!
On the front page, I doodled out some decorative leaves and flowers. The quote on the page says "The days are getting colder... have a warm heart", which I thought was absolutely darling.
The next page is my index, key, and at-a-glance overview. I know most people keep all these pages separate, however I have found that my brain works best when I can see everything at the same time. I also really enjoy looking at completely full and cluttered pages, so this page fills my heart with joy.
While we're on this page, there's a few things I want to cover.
First and foremost, let me say that I generally have not been a fan of using a key to define bullets. Most of my tasks are typical checklists, so I just use squares or circles and fill them in as they are completed. However, lately I have fallen into the habit of overscheduling myself. I will literally write dozens of tasks down that would be impossible to complete on any one given day, let alone the usual 4 or 5 hours of time I have after getting home from work in the evening.
So, I decided to try something new this month.
I will be marking small tasks with one horizontal line, medium tasks with 2 lines, and long tasks that take more than an hour with 3 lines. This should force me to actually think about how long a task will take to complete, ultimately preventing me from biting off more than I can chew.
My at-a-glance page contains a small November calendar. I don't often use the monthly view except to see the relative spacing of events, or to check what day of the week a particular date falls upon; Thus, I decided this would be sufficient for me. I also have some free space to write-in any special events that pop-up, and little notes or goals for the month, such as what book I want to read.
The most important thing on my at-a-glance page, however, is my monthly focus. This is really the heart and soul of my planning style. When left free, I tend to jump around from project to project; which would be fine, except that nothing ever actually ends up getting done. I loose focus.
Thus, each month I have been choosing 3 items to focus on. When I am planning my to-do list for the day, I try to keep these three items in mind and choose tasks that match up with these goals. I love this system because it forces me to stay focused and keep my eyes on the prize.
Maybe eventually I will write a whole blog post on the concept of choosing a monthly focus.
For now though, let's get back to the bullet journal. The next pages are my future log and habit tracker. These are pretty standard.
I did change things up a little bit in my Future Log. Rather than marking events under a specified month, I've decided that my three categories would be December (high priority), Next Year (medium priority), and Notes and Ideas (low priority). I typically write down big projects and goals in my future log, so this system forces me to think about whether it actually needs to get down soon, or if I can push it off for a few more months.
The next two pages are mostly for brainstorming. My goals section is where I can write any goals I want to accomplish this month, but have not yet been scheduled. The ideas and inspiration section is mostly for to keep my notes and important thoughts organized.
My daily gratitude and success log is a standard 1-30 numbered list. I like to write down something I accomplished each day; or if I didn't accomplish anything noteworthy, I will write down a positive thought, gratitude, or affirmation.
Last but not least, I just have a page to mark down other random stuff about the month of November, such as birthdays, little events, or anything else that finds a need to be documented. Immediately afterwards, I begin my daily entries.
So, how does it look? Do any of you use similar planning strategies such as monthly focus items, or timeboxing your tasks? If so, leave a comment below and tell me about them!