How I Organize My Life

I am a full time teacher, which means my daily schedule is hectic and at times stressful to manage. I am constantly on the go during the school day from 7:20 to 3pm and I don't even realize it until I get home somewhere between 4 and 5pm, sit on the couch, turn the TV on to catch the local news and find myself fighting off sleep that I realize how exhausted I am! I eventually give in by falling into a deep, coma-like nap I never knew my body needed. I awake to darkness momentarily confused if it's the next day already but am faced with the most harrowing decision of the day, what are we going to do for dinner?!

Once we finally establish dinner plans, it is time to actually get ready for bed because that 5:45am alarm is fast approaching. We climb into bed at 9 pm and prepare to do the same thing all over again the next day. I used to give my mother grief for going to bed at 10 pm and now I find myself shamelessly saying PEACE OUT before prime time television can even air (we have Hulu now so I can catch up on This Is Us on the weekend, no worries). Sorry mom, I never should have judged you.

Another part of the routine is working out. I love to get some physical activity in the schedule about 4 days a week either as an Orange Theory workout, a yoga class, or a long run around the neighborhood. Working out is key to my sanity! It is a stress reliever and confidence booster. It is the one slice in my day I do something for myself. Working out also boosts my energy and certainly my mood (hello endorphins!) but occasionally it just contributes to my exhaustion and stress. Remember, rest days are just as important as leg day, and you would never skip leg day.

Add to this a house cleaning schedule, dinner schedule, personal to-do list items, and knitting goals. There is a lot I have to keep track of to stay organized! Yes, I am a planner and without having good organization I get anxious and stressed, acne starts flaring, giant knots form in my shoulders, and I am easily triggered by any small comment from my husband unfortunately making him the target of my emotions. NOT GOOD! We've been married for almost 4 years so he's learned to not take any of it personally. He'll usually run around the house power cleaning and buy me flowers as a way of saying "don't eat me, please!" But I like to avoid all that from the beginning. So what method of organization do I use? A bullet journal!
Bullet journal 2018 year layout
Bullet journals are great. I take time to fill out what's coming up next week, schedule workout days, plan out a few nights worth of dinners I can cook at home, and keep track of my to-do list all in one place. For info on how to start a bullet journal, check out the original Bullet Journal website. Of course you can also scan Pinterest for all kinds of inspiration. Some of the layouts are elaborate pages of artwork - and I am not an artist by any means! But I do like to add some color and a few fun doodles for creativity to make my journal uniquely my own. I also have found that the time that it may take to create a layout just to display appointments and tasks for a week seems a little counter productive to the whole mission of the bullet journal; to efficiently organize weekly items in list form to increase productivity.

From some pin-spiration, I decided I wanted to create bullet journal pages to keep my knitting projects and ideas organized as well as keep notes on all the patterns I was creating. The doodles seen are the extent of my artistic capabilities. I can keep track of the yarn and needles I want to use for a project and the start and finish time for each. An empty box is a "want to knit", one slash is "in progress", and two slashes is "off the needles." You can see I have several projects in progress at the moment.
As a side note, I also have created pages to keep track of books I have read and made a meditation tracker, both of which are templates that I fill in with colored pencil. 


I feel satisfied after completing a book or a meditation session, the same as if I were checking a box on a to-do list as an item is done. Except it creates a colorful mosaic that keeps me motivated to keep going and adding more colors to the page, a great visual for my progress. As you can see, I have a lot of books I want to read (yet another thing I don't have much time for in my life). Summer is reading time, so until then I won't be doing much coloring on this page.

If you haven't tried bullet journaling, go buy yourself a composition notebook with blank pages and give it a try! If you like it, you can upgrade to the moleskin model and artist pens later. I tried several different weekly layouts until I found one I liked. And I use the base model for my monthly plans, absolutely nothing fancy about it. I migrate anything I wasn't able to accomplish for the week or month into the next so nothing gets forgotten and I have significantly increased my productivity around the house. This is a great tool to organize your life and there are endless possibilities for uses other than just weekly and monthly planning. Use a bullet journal? I'd love to hear it! Leave comments below.





Comments

  1. I've never seen such a beautifully scribed journal I love it!😍

    ReplyDelete
  2. Thank you! I’m no artist but I love the simplicity of bullet journaling and creating my own pages for my needs. This knitting page setup has been great for organizing my project ideas and design notes.

    ReplyDelete

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