It is safe to say that 2017 has been shaped by the use of my Bullet Journal, it’s done some great things for me. I have become more organised, I’ve been able to make sure I use each day for something good, I’ve learned to stop procrastinating and I feel like I’ve regained a level of control over my life, something which I’ve lost a lot of due to my health limitations. As such I’ve been really excited to set up my 2018 Bullet Journal and think about how I’ll be using it.
All of that just from a planner? Absolutely, yes, yes and yes. I wouldn’t have believed you, a year to 18 months ago, were you to tell me that a journal would have shaped my life so much, but it really has. Just look at my next photo to see how well loved, and how well used my journal is, I have used it for so many days and it’s give me focus and motivation on days which may otherwise have been lost.
Now I have to say, from the outset, that I didn’t plan on starting a new journal just because it was a new year, my old journal started in September 2016 so I was just going to use it until I ran out of pages, but by some amazing feat of coincidence my beloved first journal will end at the end of December 2017. I don’t plan ahead but I do know that I tend to use roughly 3 days per page, and the 31st of December, as long as my pages work as expected, will sit on the very last page of my journal!
I didn’t think I’d struggle to say good bye to my old journal, I didn’t understand why some people keep theirs, but I’m actually really attached to it! That said, I’ve been equally as excited to set up the shiny, new, copper journal that I bought in preparation a few months ago. I got a copper Leuchtturm 1917, in a dot grid – I used a squared paper before so using the dot grid will take some getting used to. I prepared my journal, before anything else, by breaking it in as described in this video by the creator of the Bullet Journal system – http://bulletjournal.com/breaking-in-a-notebook/
I’ve been planning which elements of my old journal I’d take forward in to the new one for a while but, actually, I’ve not carried much forward at all – There are some things that I think I may decide I do want in the new journal but I’m not going to do that until I know for sure – The beauty of the Bullet Journal is that you can just add things as and when you’re ready. Some people get really excited and plan months and months in advance but for me, it’s all about the flexibility to just do one day at a time.
Consequently my basic set-up is pretty much the same as my last one – A calendex for future planning, a monthly overview and to-do list for each month, food and book lists for each months and then rolling days for my normal use. I will carry on decorating, primarily, with washi tape as you can see and I have also decided to do 2018 Bingo again because I really enjoyed the challenge in 2017. I didn’t complete my 2017 Bingo (you can see what challenges I set myself in my minimalist post here) but I don’t really mind, it helped me achieve quite a few things and some of them have been carried forward to complete in 2018 instead.
I think I was a little over confident in 2017 so I’ve only set myself 9 challenges for 2018 and I think I’ve got a much better chance at finishing it this time around. As you can see I’ve mostly gone for reading, writing and crochet related aims, as well as one beauty.
I’d like to finish Oliver’s Chevron blanket and start my Willow blanket, they were both challenges I set myself last year but crochet was really hard. I think it’ll still be hard in 2018 but I’m hoping to be able to try and dedicate a little more time to it and get those projects either done, or well under way.
Last year I challenged myself to read 50 and 75 books but I’ve not read as much towards the end of the year, having started watching series’ on Netflix on my phone more often instead, so I reduced my challenge somewhat and I think that 25, and 50 books is much more attainable. I really don’t read non-fiction very often but I’d like to read at least one non-fiction book in 2018.
The last few are writing and beauty related. I really do want to make real progress on my novel this year and I do want to make sure I spend some time making myself happy. I’ve barely painted my nails this year, even though I used to always have them painted, so I want to make sure I paint them more in 2018 and my novel… well who knows what’ll happen there. Realistically I want most of a book written in 2018 but I thought that 2 chapters was less overwhelming, so more achievable.
I haven’t set my sights too high for 2018 – Being chronically ill means re-learning how to live your life. Life has become about making small, but pleasant, changes to life rather than expecting to move on in leaps and bounds and I think that’s reflected in the two quotes I have chosen for this year. Both of these quotes sum up how I feel about life – ‘Don’t count the days, make the days count’ and ‘Be the change you wish to see’. These are the quotes I want to keep coming back to, in 2018, to help me form my year and help me be the person I want to be.
I am looking forward to 2018, to more time with my little family, to the improvements we’ll be seeing on our home and to fulfilling some promises to myself. I hope you all enjoy 2018 and are ready to embrace whatever it brings.
Do you have any challenges you’ve set yourself for the coming year? Do you do resolutions or do you find that tasks are more attainable like me?