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My 2014 Planner... Your Questions Answered

Monday, March 3, 2014

I've received a lot of wonderful feedback and several questions on my planner / bullet journal, so I decided to do a follow-up post to answer your most asked questions. Here we go...

Q) How do I start? 

A) If you missed my first post about my Bullet Journal, click HERE. A lot of people are finding it very helpful, and I have a link to a video from the creator of the system.

Q) Do you have enough pages in your Moleskine journal to cover the whole year? How many days do you fit on a page in your calendar section? 

A) Yes, I have plenty of pages to last the whole year. The calendar section took me up to page 146. The first two pages are for birthdays, holidays, and anniversaries. Then each month gets two pages for the overview and task, and ten pages for daily planning (fitting three days on one page, and four days on the tenth page for months that have thirty-one days.) Pages 147-148 are for future planning. That left me with 42 blank pages to use any way I want.

Q) Did you do the whole year at one time, or do you do it on a month-to-month basis? Do you have to set it up all at one time? How long did it take you to set it up? 

A) Yes, I did the whole year at one time. I did it that way so I can plan far in advance, and for me, investing the time to do it all at once helps me stay on track and ensure I use my journal daily.

No, you don't have to do it all at once. It just works best for me to do it that way.

It took me five or six hours to set up my journal, but like I told a reader, that included breaks, a lot of finger tapping while I decided what I wanted to put in my journal, doodling, washi taping, and fighting to keep my eyes open since I got a very late start on it and was up until the wee hours of the morning working on it. Others have done it in much less time.

Q) Do you carry your journal with you when you're away from home, or do you have a separate calendar? 

A) I carry my journal with me. It's small enough to fit in my purse, so it works. I think it would be redundant to have a separate calendar, but that's just me :)

Q) What does your key code look like? 

A) I have two different keys in place. The first picture shows the key I use for my special days calendar, which includes birthdays, holidays, etc. The second key shows the one I use for my daily calendar. You can see it in action in the third picture.

Q) Do you feel like you have had enough space (daily) to journal and such, since you completed the entire year? 

A) Some days I have plenty of space, and some days I don't. It depends on how much I have to say on any given day, and how much I have going on. The more tasks I have to complete in one day, the less room I have to write about my day. It is meant to be concise, so I think the problem comes from me wanting to write too much, like I would in a diary. On the days when I don't have enough room, I just write in the back of my journal. Since I had a lot of room left in the back, I dedicated a spot for that exact purpose.

Q) Do I really need to index things? 

A) If you don't want to waste a lot of time flipping pages looking for things, then yes. But it's your journal, so do what works for you :)

Q) Do you use your computer for calendar/planning as well, or just the bullet journal? 

A) Nope, just my bullet journal. It saves time not having to look in several places. The only other calendar I have is the Cozi app on my phone. It's sole purpose is to keep my family informed of things, since they don't have access to my journal. So any events they need to be made aware of are quickly plugged into Cozi, and it automatically shows up on their Cozi app on their phones / iPods. Cozi is also great because there is a Fly Lady version (which is the one I use.) Since I integrated the Fly Lady system into my cleaning routine, it's handy to have because it shows me right on Cozi what the day's cleaning tasks are. (For more info on my household binder and how I use Fly Lady, click HERE. My household binder still serves me very well. The only thing I've eliminated from it is the calendar section, since I use my bullet journal for that now.)

Q) How did you organize it? (weight loss page / look ahead / birthdays)

A) Click HERE to go to the original post. I talk about what I did, and included pictures. If you have more specific questions, just ask in the comments, and I will be happy to answer them.

Q) How is the bullet journal working for you so far? 

A) I love it! I love it so much that I will be doing this for next year, too. No more regular calendars or day planners for me.

I hope that helps a little. If you have any more questions, please feel free to ask in the comments section below, on my facebook page, or you can email me. As always, thanks for stopping by! You can subscribe and follow me on social media near the top of the page.

14 Responses to “My 2014 Planner... Your Questions Answered”

  1. Hi Shandy!

    I'm finally visiting your blog after I saw that you visited my "Cake" page on my blog and left a comment about my puppy cake! I really love this idea for a bullet journal! It seems my lifetime goal is to be more organized with my 5 children! This would be great when/if I make the time to follow through with the project! :) I'm following you now on GFC and Liked your Facebook page too! God bless! Tracy over @ A Slice of Smith Life

    1. Hi Tracy! Thanks for stopping by :) I'm also following you on Faacebook now. (Already was following on bloglovin!) My bullet journal has been a lifesaver so far. Organization is definitely key when you have kiddos. Have an awesome day!

  2. Thanks for sharing all your tips. I started my bullet journal the beginning of February and I am still using it! This is the longest I have ever stuck with a planner. I also use Cozi for appointments and such to keep my husband in line. Lol.

    1. Hi Kristin! This is the longest I've ever stuck with a planner, too! I have total confidence that this is "the one." Definitely need to keep the hubby in line ;) Cozi is great for that! I also like that the Fly Lady daily tasks are built into it. I've been using it for a long time and love it! Have a great day!

  3. Thanks, I am starting to practice for March and will start for good in April. So far I love the system. I will still keep google calendar for birthdays, anniversaries etc because it does send the reminder to my email. I just 'Liked' your page on FB. I am La Cuisine d'Hélène :)

    1. Hi Helene! Thanks for the fb like :) I just went over to your page and returned the favor. Have a great day!

  4. Great ideas! Do you have a favorite type of pen that you use? So far, all of the pens that I've tried on the Moleskine journal show through to some extent. Thanks!

    1. Hi Shannon! The Paper Mate Flairs are my favorite, but they do bleed through a little, so I don't use them in my Moleskine very often anymore. I mainly use the Paper Mate Inkjoy Quatro (in pastel colors) because the ink barely shows on the opposite side of the paper. I use the Pilot G-2 and the Avery eGEL for a lot of other things, but the ink does show a little. It doesn't bleed through like the Flairs, though. You can just see that there is writing on the other side. Like what a ballpoint pen would look like on regular looseleaf paper. If I find something amazing, I will be sure to post about it! :)

  5. What do you do about actually planning, instead of just tasks and single items? Like if you were planning a project that has multiple steps that could easily take a half a page. This system seems like it work wonderfully for tasks and single-lined items, but I can't see how people use it for project planning. What do you use for that?

    1. I use mine for project planning all the time :) I had a lot of empty pages at the back of my journal, so I just use those pages for planning and whatever else strikes my fancy. It's worked out very well for me.

    2. The Bullet Journal creator says to create "Collections" and if it's a huge project e.g. Home renovation you can even sub-title collects e.g. So your collection name will be Home Renovation, and one of your sub-titles can be "Budget" then individual rooms i.e "Bedroom" etc etc you can create a page for each sub-title to ensure you've got enough space.

      Hope that helps.

    3. ^^^ Exactly right, Angelica :)

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