Why I Bullet Journal : Or How I Learnt to Love My Planner

  • Ryder Carroll’s Bullet Journaling

First things first. If you have never watched Sir (his honourary title from me) Caroll’s video on Bullet Journalling, please be my guest and take a minute to watch. I won’t lie, it took me about 3 times to really grasp the concept but once I wrapped my head around it I hit the ground running.

Whenever I am asked to explain what it is to “Bujo” i tend to oversimplify.

Me: It’s like having a planner, but in a notebook.

Unbeliever: So it’s a notebook.

Me: No, it’s like a planner and a notebook in one!

Unbeliever: So it’s a planner.

Me: … just let me show you this short video …

I believe it’s intricacy lies in its simplicity. Let me explain why.

Why Bullet Journaling is my weapon of choice

I have always had commitment issues. I used to buy up to 3 diaries every year and never finish one. i would last maybe a month in one. I would record event or appointments, and things I really needed to get done but not to any serious extent and I definitely wouldn’t check it during the day. What a goose.Here is a short lists of things I can’t stick with for more than a few weeks

  • any type of challenge, especially one that involves the words “fitness” or “healthy”
  • a long book
  • haircuts
  • routines
  • notebooks

In the past I have kept buying books with the intention to read, pens and notebooks with the wish to fill them but they were simply added to my growing horde. These days my spending habits have not changed one bit but there is less guilt now. All because of the Bullet Journal (cue heavenly music).

So, besides my justification to continue buying enormous amounts of stationery, why have I chosen Bullet Journaling?

Because it is practical. Because it is personal. Because it is flexible. It is literally every planner you ever wanted it to be, especially if you like a different layout every day or even if you don’t want a layout at all. As little or as much as you want, the Bullet Journal system can accommodate you. I lust over having amazing cursive writing. I want so bad to be able to doodle. I love the look of full pages of the EC and Kikki K planners. But that’s not my style. That’s not me. and no matter how many of them I buy, they ain’t never gunna look like the pictures I see on IG.

That’s why I’ve stuck with the Bujo system for a year now. My layout has undergone so many changes, but my system has always remained the same. That’s why in the past year (especially after many failed starts of “getting my life back on track” after having a little girl) I’ve had so many personal successes. I’ve found my system and I’ve made it work for me.


Two links I’ve posted below have heavily influenced how I have become so confident in my system. Keep what works for you and ditch what doesn’t. This is the magic of the Bullet Journal.

This first video is from the incredibly motivating Vicky Bee on YouTube. Her video got me onto the straight and narrow, discussing “planner peace” and the importance of choosing your system vs choosing your planner.

This second link is from the First Lady of Bullet Journalling, Kim Alvarez. Kim has guided me through my early Bujo days and her IG and blog is an amazing source of information. Below she talks about “recentering”, keeping our Bujos refreshed, current and uncluttered.


What I use

Once you have found in your heart that you are a Bujo-er, you get to choose how to do it! As mentioned before, I have had the pleasure of doing this for a year now and I am finally settled in for 2016, definitely after a few false starts.

I am using a Hobonichi Cousin and a Hobonichi Techno A6 (English version) and my Midori. My Cousin, being A5 and can hold the most information, i use as a record keeping device. My A6 is my journal. My Midori holds my lists. I would prefer to use only the one book, but I am keen to stick with my Hobos for the year.

My next post will go into more detail about how I use these beautiful tool to enhance my life.


So this is Me and this is how I do.

I came across the planner world a little over a year ago. My personal Instagram started branching out, following calligraphy uses, which led me to fountain pen uses, which opened the flood gates to the creative world of planning. 

Sales were starting for the new year (2015) and Kikki K had their planners on sale. The gold caught my eye of course. I tried it out for a while but I didn’t understand why mine never looked like the ones on IG. Never pretty or colourful, mine was simply filled with information. And not a lot at that. I would pull it out from time to time and stroke it lovingly and start to follow more and more people on IG but still my planning felt unfulfilling. I began to neglect it but started to buy more pens and washi and post-it notes. Then my older sister got in on the game and introduced me to Bullet Journaling. She knows I’m not the creative type, and not matter how many Kikki K videos I watched on decorating, my planner would never look like that.  I craved functionality over beauty and that’s why Ryder Carroll’s system is the only one for me. 

I have kept a journal since I was about 12 years old. I was a pretty emotionally dramatic kid and a journal was the perfect way for me to vent, wail and rejoice and be able to turn the page and get some closure. I still get immense joy, and embarrassment, over seeing all my entries over the years. Getting older and looking back on my life, I realise my memory is pretty hazy. I’m always forgetting events that have past, and going through my 2015 review, I’m shocked at how much does not just spring to mind. That’s where my passion for memory keeping comes in. I want to be able to look back in 10 years time to my 2016 journal and laugh and cry and see all these beautiful memories in this precious book of mine. 

My name is Jess and this blog is how Bullet Journalling has come into my life and become the most perfect companion.