BuJo Curious? The Things to Know About Bullet Journaling Before You Get Started

published Nov 29, 2016
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(Image credit: @pureplanning_bymj)

Bullet journals (or BuJos for short) are definitely having a moment right now. Everywhere you look—Instagram, YouTube, Pinterest—there’s bullet journal fever. If the cult-favorite organizational system has piqued your curiosity but you are not quite sure if it’s for you, we’re walking you through a few key things you need to know before you decide to BuJo or not to BuJo.

A Bullet Journal is Not a Diary

First off, don’t let the word journal fool you. A bullet journal isn’t a ‘dear diary’ type of thing where you write about your day for pages on end. Bullet journaling is a rapid logging organizational system that allows you to track all of your tasks, appointments, and goals all in one place. Unlike pre-made planners, bullet journals are a much more flexible, creative, and decidedly beautiful way to plan and organize your life.

A photo posted by @thebujette on

Bullet Journaling is Not As Complicated as it Seems

Before you actually dive into bullet journaling, I highly suggest first watching this video where Ryder Carroll, the creator of the system, walks you through the basic elements. Yes, it seems a little overwhelming at first but once you get the hang of it, it’s a breeze. There are four main modules you need to start off with, which include an index (basically, a table of contents), a future log for planning far in advance, and monthly and daily sections for specific tasks that need to be done. The rest is pretty much up to you, which brings us to our next point.

Bullet Journaling is Completely Customizable

Store-bought agendas are great, but the downside is that they don’t offer much in terms of customization. They typically don’t include too many blank pages and you’re forced to cram your entire day into these tiny boxes. With a bullet journal, you pretty much make your own rules. You can add, tweak, and change things as you go.

A Bullet Journal Can Help You Reach Your Goals

In addition to keeping track of your daily appointments and to dos, bullet journals will work wonders with helping you reach your goals and establish better habits. You can keep a gratitude log, track your workouts, meal plan, budget track, jot down ideas, write down wish lists, and so much more.

Bullet Journaling is for Creatives and Minimalists Alike

One of the many beauties of bullet journaling is that you can get as creative as you like in between the pages of your BuJo. It’s become a therapeutic creative outlet for many. You can practice calligraphy, sketch, watercolor, play with stickers—the possibilities are endless. However, making your bullet journal look fancy isn’t a requirement. So if crisp white pages with beautiful handwriting are more your jam, bullet journaling will work for you too.

Bullet Journaling is Super Affordable

Although you can go as crazy as you like buying creative tools to adorn your bullet journal with (Stickers! Washi tape! Markers!), all you really need to get started bullet journaling is a fresh notebook (any will do, even one from the dollar store!) and a pen, which makes this planning system super budget-friendly.

Can’t get enough BuJo in your life? Check out more posts about bullet journaling right here.