Friday, 4 November 2016

Leuchtturm Bullet Journal - update

About 6 weeks ago, I got a Leuchtturm Bullet Journal from Bureau Direct (I blogged about it here). At the end, I said I'd give you an update "in about a week"... well, it's been a bit more than a week, but here's the update!

I'd love to say that I've embraced the bullet journal but I'm really struggling to fit it in with the rest of my system (which is not broken and therefore doesn't need fixing!). My current system uses a combination of three things:
  • a week + notes diary (where the diary side holds the few appointments I have and notes page is used for the next actions I'm aiming to complete in the week, split into life areas)
  • a note book for jotting stuff down while out and about
  • an A6 squared notebook (by Clairefontaine) that is used for day planning. This has a page per day, and is the place where I time-box my day, list day tasks, plus it has space for jotting small things down
The first 2 of those are held in my Meadowgate Leather TN which is also my wallet (see here for details); the A6 sits open on my desk.

So, how am I using the A5 Leuchtturm bullet journal?

I was never going to use the first few pages as a 'future log' as all future log stuff can go straight into the correct date in the diary, so I used correction tape over the labels on those pages. So far I haven't used correction tape over the pre-filled entry in the index, and if I do use the index (which, technically, is a table of contents...) I will do.

What it's ended up being is a "book of stuff I've jotted down". I started out with a page for email reminders, then a page for blog post ideas, one for random jottings (lyrics from a song I heard so I could find it online), some marketing notes, notes about how a Facebook ad had done, a list of book finds (for my author blog - I do a book finds post once a month), notes for social media scheduling, and notes about book promotion sites.

It's just over six weeks since I started using it, and I've used 12 pages. One of those is a failed attempt at doing a weekly overview layout (to see if it would work better than my diary. It didn't.). I genuinely don't know what to use it for other than a day book. I started doing marketing notes in it but then decided that actually, I'd prefer to keep all the marketing notes together rather than them ending up distributed throughout the book, so I re-wrote all of them in a different notebook. The rest of my notes are what I would think of as 'day book' notes - and maybe that's where its use lies - somewhere to jot down stuff.

The kind of thing I would usually use
for a scrappy notebook!
I know that other people use them in the way bullet journals are intended to be used - to clear everything out of your head and put it all in one place. However, I don't think my brain works like that at all. I like diary stuff in a diary; I like to journal in my journal; I like to keep scrappy notes (that can be tossed after they've outlived their use) in a scrappy book; I like to keep project notes all together in a notebook dedicated to that project ... you see my problem. I really don't like things all jumbled up together. So, short of using it as a project notebook (which I don't want to do now that it's got all this other stuff in the front), the only thing left is to use it as a scrappy notebook for jotting throwaway things in.

My problem then, is that it's an expensive book for using as a scrappy notebook! I have a zillion other books that I could use for jotting things down that don't need keeping. Anything that does need keeping should have a proper 'home'. But because it's such a nice book (the paper is surprisingly fountain pen friendly - some show through, no feathering, no bleed through) I feel like I'm not doing it justice merely using it for a "book of stuff I've jotted down". It's falling between two camps for me. I will keep using it as a high-class day book but it does feel a bit too nice for that.

I received the notebook from Bureau Direct, but the opinions are entirely my own and unsolicited.

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