My approach to bullet journalling doesn’t put a heavy focus on routines and habitual usage. I use it a lot and also have patterns for when I use it.
There are two important times for me to use my bullet journal: morning and night.
At night, I’m less likely to remember the bullet journal, even though it’s better to use then. At night, I like to check in with my trackers and calendars, like my monthly spreads. I need a push to remember to check in with the trackers to do the point where I put a reminder somewhere on my daily or weekly log. I also like to plan out the next day.
In the morning, I check the plan for the day; or, if I’ve forgotten to write it up the night before, I make it. I’ll double check to see if there are any other things to add.
Throughout the day, I refer back to my bullet journal. This is what the bulk of my planning is for: keeping me on track throughout the day.
I don’t have a set time where I sit and make spreads or plan the day. However, when I am getting set up to work on my bullet journal, I like to put on some ambient music and minimise my distractions.
The time I take to finish a spread will depend on the complexity of the design, how distracted I am, if I’m illustrating stuff… All that jazz.
- Setting up a monthly layout can take me about 1 – 2 hours.
- Setting up a weekly layout can take about 1/2 – 1 hour.
- Setting up a daily layout can take about 15 – 30 minutes.
I try to get the monthly layout done before the start of the month, and same with the weekly. However, there are times where I don’t get the month done until the 1st, or the weekly done until the Monday (because I start my week on a Monday, not a Sunday).
I strive for a planning routine, but really, I don’t have much of one. I want to develop a routine, but I’d have to have more of a schedule for the rest of my life as well and fit in bullet journalling into that. I’ll forget to use monthly trackers for a few days—sometimes a week or more—but I’ve learned to, frankly, not give a damn. 😉