From Diaries to Bullet Journaling

     Hello everyone, hope you’re all doing well. For those who’ve been reading my blog for a few years now, you know that I’ve been through a good number of planners over the last five years and I’ve tried a number of different styles of planning.

     I think working your way through a lot of different planners is something almost all planner enthusiast do because it really can take a while to find the planning style that suits you. Add to that that your situation changes over time and what might have worked for you a few years ago doesn’t work for you now and that makes for a lot of experimentation! Thankfully, there are a lot of good planners to out there to try so it’s usually possible to find something that works for you.

     I’ve always used a planner of some sort. In secondary school it was compulsory to have the school diary for taking note of your homework but to be honest, I never really used it – I just remembered what homework I had, even if there was a lot of it. Sure, I forgot things every now and again but I just didn’t feel like using the actual diary. It wasn’t until college that I actually started using diaries more regularly. Again though, I rarely used the diary for listing assignments and deadlines. Instead, I started using my diary for making to-do lists for assignments such as things to read, research and write. I realised that listing events wasn’t really my thing – I just remembered when things were happening – but to-do lists were invaluable (and very satisfying when you could tick things off). So while in college, I loved using my diaries for making my daily to-do lists (I remember having one Faber and Faber Poetry Diary which I absolutely loved – wonder if I can find that again).

     So that’s how my planning style started – I discovered that to-do lists were invaluable to me and to this day my planner is pretty much used for making to-do lists.

     I got my first Filofax towards the end of my last year in college (March 2015) because I felt I needed to upgrade my planning style (and was falling in love with seeing other people’s pretty planners) and have since been documenting my planner journey on my blog from personal Filofax to pocket planner to A5 Filofax and back to personal size. As I said, I documented all my planner stages from the Filofax on on this blog so I won’t go into long rambling stories on those (as I already have somewhere on this blog!).

     Anyway, after my Filofax phase, I had a brief foray into travellers journals (my fauxdori), before fully moving to notebooks and making my own spreads. I would say that the bullet journal phase which I’m currently in is the longest lasting and most consistent planner phrase for me and that’s in no small part due to the freedom and flexibly that the bujo is.

    I absolutely love my bullet journal but looking back over all my planners, I still have fond memories of each one and it’s fun to look back over my planning history and think of the reasons why I loved each planner.

     So what’s the point of this post? There isn’t really one other than to say ‘wow, I’ve used a lot of planners over the years!’. Really, I’d love to know what your planner history is, have you always used the same one or have you been trying out every possible style? Have you found planner peace (for the moment) or are you still looking?


10 thoughts on “From Diaries to Bullet Journaling

  1. I have used an organizer for years. Mine is actually part of my wallet, which makes people mock – and my back hurt. The thing is heavy. It shows me a week in advance and it’s wear I write appointments, bdays and things i have to do. I also have a plan notebook at work where I record my day’s to-do list. I have a bullet journal, but don’t use it like it is supposed to be used as I am a writer and not an illustrator. I love them, but it’s not for me. My journal is a journal, where I write and add keepsakes.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Always wanted one of those Filofax wallets but figured I’d end up carrying a brick around all the time because my Filofax always ended up pretty bulky not matter how many times I tried to slim it down!


    2. I do not know what that is. I will look it up – oh, mine is way bigger. Organizer, wallet, change purse, card holder. It’s huge. So I hear you.


  2. It seems a boring, standard issue planner with pre-printed calendar and daily pages works best for me. I need the full letter page size, so it’s a beast to carry around, but I can’t fit everything into a smaller version.
    I wish I had the time and discipline to design my own pages, but I really just need to get my to-do lists and scheduling down so I can spend more time on art.
    I love working in smaller art journals, but rarely make time for them either. Outside of the big planner, I get the most use out of random journals that I use for painting concepts and organizing research and sketches by subject. That means I have a lot of partially used journals, but I can find the specific page I need pretty quickly because they are all very different.
    You are inspiring me to do a better job of getting organized and making repairs and embellishments to some of my older, well-worn journals.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. When I kept a diary I was never a forward planner. It was more just to jot down things as they happened. I’m also a lover of lists. I’ve found peace with my bullet journal and I have so notebooks where I write down longer ramblings, and I use my planners for writing for the sake of writing.
    I’m thinking of starting an art journal as well as but we’ll see!!!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I have several art journals / junk journals also but I tend to go long periods of time without using them, have a burst of inspiration and then go back to not using them for weeks, sometimes months.


  4. I’m still trying to find what works for me. I am definitely someone who needs to write everything down and also enjoy a good list to tick things off. I like the bullet journal concept, but I definitely still need a small weekly view to keep track of the few appointments I have.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yeah, a weekly view is really useful – I always try to include a small weekly section to go alongside my daily lists so I can see what’s ahead in that week rather than always having to refer to my yearly or monthly views.

      Liked by 1 person

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