weekly bullet journal

So I know that it’s been over two months since I’ve posted on this little blog of mine, but I’m surprised that it generates some daily average of 300+ views. Thanks, everyone, and please continue with the comments and questions, etc. I check every now and again, even though life and work has gotten the best of me at the moment.

You are probably all very sick of me blogging about the bullet journal, and I’m fairly certain that I’ve changed planners and formats more frequently this year than any other year! I came across Plannerisms’s ongoing debate a few days ago, and I can absolutely relate to her planner conflict! For me, I think having two separate planning systems has buggered me over. My work documents can potentially be subpoenaed and I have to surrend them to the company once my contract finishes this year. I’m not too keen on other people knowing about my personal life, and it just looks unprofessional. And yes, I know that I promised to post a blog up about my work bullet journal, but I’ve somehow lost that post somewhere in the abyss of my laptop desktop. I’ve got a bit of a break coming up, so I’ll try to get that up and running.

So today’s treat is a peak into my personal weekly bullet journal. I know last post I mentioned that I went back to grid paper, used the TDW, etc., but now I’ve returned to my beloved Castelli weekly planner.

cover

This is my one book wonder! I bought the binder pouch on the outside from Daiso a few days ago and it holds my trusty Uni Jetstream 101 black pen, and two different coloured highlighters.

binder pouch

The Castelli weekly planner is formatted in a similar fashion to the Moleskine and Leuchtturm1917 weekly planners but it comes in a 15 month book, with lots of useful information at the front. I discovered today that it has an information page dedicated to the meanings of Latin terms. Yes, I know, it’s the speech-language pathologist side coming out in me! Anyhoo, below is a sample page.

weekly bullet journal spread

Excuse the white marks, I needed to deidentify a few bits of it. I write all my events and appointments on the weekly side (left page) using this format: time event @ location, e.g. “1830 dinner @ friends place”. Below is a close up of some of the tasks.

top spread

How I use the weekly bullet journal system:

  • I use the ‘tasks‘ bullet (square) with the in progress/incomplete and complete annotations as my original post from many months ago but I don’t use the GTD ‘@contexts’ anymore.
  • I list all the tasks that need to be finished (attempted) that week. So, call this a ‘brain dump’, if you will.
  • I don’t have a set time to plan, but I guess it’s usually somewhere between finishing off reports at home and sleeping, that I decide to allocate a task to a given day. This is what the numbers to the left of the task boxes signify. If I know something needs to be completed on a day, then I’ll write that in.
  • When I look over my planner for the day, I scan the left side of the margin to any numbers that coincide with today. For example, if the day is August 25, then I scan down the left side of the margin, until I see ’25’, and I see that I need to ‘recharge my mobile phone’ and ‘MirLend Day 6’ journal entry.
  • Migrated tasks have the arrow and then a date assigned to it. If I don’t have a date for it, I highlight it pink for when I do a monthly task scan – it stands out more this way.
  • For daily notes, I use the ‘dot’ bullet followed by the date. For example “3108: purchased a Canon D100” (see picture below)
  • I also have different icons to signify ideas, books, sellers, websites, etc.
  • I haven’t hashtagged any of these notes, but I usually place a hashtag to the left of the margin next to a note when I’ve added it to a collection. For example, in this section, I’ll place a hashtag next to the ‘lightbulb’ icon when I’ve placed that entry into my “Ideas List”

bottom spread

The one thing that the Castelli planner doesn’t have is a ribbon to mark your place in the year. I had some coloured paperclips from a previous stationery haul, so I decided to use them as bookmarks. The yellow marks the yearly calendar, the green is the start of my collections, the blue is my current place in the planner, and the pink is a spare.

paperclips

I’ve been (re-using) this planner for about 5 weeks now, and so far so good. So, internet community, what are some planner modifications you’ve made since you last visited my blog? Have you ditched your current planning/organising system? If so, what was the clincher?

dm

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19 thoughts on “weekly bullet journal

  1. I’ve struggled with mixing personal and professional in one planner so your post has given me some ideas …. Thanks for sharing and yes, your penmenship is to die for ;)

  2. Hi Dee,

    since yesterday I was reading all of your posts regarding your Bullet-Journal modifications. Really really inspiring. I haven’t found the optimal solution for me yet :(. I think I’m kinda over-organized.
    May I ask you some questions?

    • Do you still have the monthly 2 page spread you introduced in one of your articles?
      If not, how do you handle this case (for example):
      In my actual week it’s Friday now, my car is in the garage and the garage calls me, saying that I can pick-up my car in 2 weeks. How do you keep track of this event/task when you have a weekly setup like on your picture?
    • What do you do with tasks you are waiting for?
      Example: I wrote an email to a restaurant asking to agree for a date. This email was sent during restaurant’s vacation and I’m waiting for their answer (similar to the @waiting for list in GTD). How do you keep track of those?

    • What’s the difference between the pink and non-pink migrated tasks?

    • If you assign a date to a task, but you are not able to complete it that day, how do you’migrate’ it to an other date without striking through the old day (which looks messy after some time)?

    • One of my most important questions: How do you keep track on projects? For example: My wedding this year is a huge project involving a lot of sub-projects. At the moment I use the GTD system of having a list with all the projects and within my notebook a page with more details/information (no fixed order, I place it were is free space). To find this information later on, I put the page number into the project list to know where I can find specific information to a project. I then add always (one step after each other) the next action into my to-do lists. But sometimes the next task is months away (place a reservation for the aircraft seats is only possible 28 days before departure) where we are back at my very first question. I’m not so excited about this approach, don’t know why, it seems so complicated and wired.

    Last question then you’re free’d :D. This binder pouch… any chance to have a link where to get one? I searched the internet but couldn’t find anything :(.

    This was a rather long comment, but I hope if you; who has a really good working system gives some answers/advice to my questions, I’m able to develop mine further or get more ideas how to do so. Your system is really amazing and I try to implement something similar. Maybe I’m too fixated to GTD and try to overcomplicate things (a lot of people mentioned this already, my tendency to overcomplicate rather simple things).

    I’m looking forward to your answer.
    Best wishes,
    Frank

    1. Hi Frank, first I’d like to thank you for taking the time to write such a thoughtful comment, and second, apologies that I’ve only gotten around to responding to it now. I’ve been super busy with my first week back at work for the new year and a change/transfer of offices. I didn’t want to just give you a half-hearted response since you put so much time into your comment. So here are my responses:

      • Do you still have the monthly 2-page spread introduced in one of your articles? How do you handle a task/event ahead of time in a weekly set-up? –> I don’t use the monthly 2-page spread anymore. The weekly + notes view allows me to allocate tasks and events when they need to occur
      • What do you do with tasks you are waiting for? –> you have the example of booking a restaurant. So in my current week, I’d use a task box followed by “boom restaurant”. After I’ve action the task, I’ll annotate any notes after it e.g. “book restaurant: vacation” then draw a migrate arrow and write “list” in the margin. This “list” is actually a new concept I’ll be introducing in my blog posts over the next few weeks, but it’s basically a list of all awaiting and any tasks that haven’t been actioned over several weeks. Hopefully that makes sense…

      • What’s the difference between the pink and non-pink migrated tasks? –> they were tasks highlighted in pink that are important but I didn’t complete for whatever reason

      • How do you migrate a task without striking through the date? –> I completely understand how it can get messy and I normally carry around correction tape with me. If I can’t be bothered I just strike it through. If it’s getting ridiculous and I’ve written 3 different dates, then I migrate to the next week.

      • How do you keep track of projects? –> I use this a lot more for my work organization. This is where it starts to look a bit like a mix of GTD and bullet journal collections. I have a Project Inbox for each project that I have and list everything down – tasks, events and appointments, using the “@” for contexts. Then I create a collection for each part of the project and allocate the tasks from the Project Inbox into each collection. Mine will usually be something like data collection, intervention, presentations, meeting minutes, resources, etc. I have a completely separate bullet journal for projects. The only crossover will be important tasks from my Projects transcribed into my work bullet journal just so I don’t forget anything! I use a tagging system (colouring in the edge of the page) to locate similar pages of collections in my book. My wedding was last year but ours was super low key, so we decided on an electronic system so that both me and my husband can tick off tasks on the one list. I hope this has helped you a bit.

      • Where did you get the binder pouch? –> I bought this at Daiso. Happy to send you one if you like. Email me your details dozmtz at gmail dot com

      Thanks again for the kind comments, Frank, and I hope your organising journey goes well for you :)

      Best wishes,
      Dee

  3. Dee, have you tried a Midori (or a fauxdori) to keep one insert just for work and one insert just for personal?
    (i know i’m extremely late to this post, sorry about that) ;-)

    1. Also, your question on why our planners end up in the ‘graveyard” … i think my biggest problem is paper size and availability. All my planners are different sizes with different spaced rings and finding all the paper, the dividers, the page protectors etc to fit is a royal nightmare. Currently, i want inserts of all kinds for my fauxdoris but finding just the right sizes and printed options is so overwhelming i feel like throwing my hands up in despair.
      I even have all the different hole punchers but hate using them because nothing ever comes out perfect, and any uneven cuts and punches drive me bonkers.
      Right now i’m just setting up my bullet journal using a bound 7″ x 4″ notebook i bought for a dollar at Walmart and calling it a day – all this seeking planner peace is wearing me out … and i’m getting ready to donate ALL my planners to a charity thrift store, except for one. I think having all the others in my space is one reason i can’t feel at peace.

      (So sorry my comments get so looong.)

      1. Hi Brianna,

        So sorry to reply so late. I’m currently in survival mode with the new bub, so I’m slowly catching up on replying to everyone’s comments. Thank you for taking the time to read my blog and make so many comments. I always appreciate the time readers make to reading and responding to my content :) I hope you’ve found a planner that’s suitable for your needs and it’s working for you. Do you have a blog or a space where you share your planner-related material? Would love to have a look, if you feel like sharing :) I’m always up for sharing ideas with the planner community.

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