Keeping Up With Your Bujo When You’re Not Feeling It

bullet journal

One of the biggest complaints that I hear about bullet journaling is that it requires regular maintenance. Well, duh. Using it as a touchstone for your life is kind of the point. I get it, though. Today, for example, I have a headache. Looking through esoterica and adding notes about what I’m doing isn’t something I have the mental bandwidth for. I’m also only working on one project today, so it doesn’t feel particularly urgent or important. Here are some tips on keeping up with your bujo when you’re not feeling it.

The obvious tip is to keep your bullet journal as simple as possible. Looking at your monthly log and throwing together a daily to-do list shouldn’t take more than a couple of minutes. What can feel like a pain in the butt for me is keeping up change logs for various projects: what got done, what got deferred, what’s in a holding pattern, and why. Over time I’ve learned what’s important and what’s not, and how to rapid log it.

When I’m not feeling motivated, I think about the times I didn’t keep notes. The tasks that got forgotten and snowballed on me because I wasn’t paying attention. Remember the pain of not having reliable documentation, or reminders, or notes to fall back on. I’d rather suffer through the minor inconvenience of updating my bujo than deal with the cascading clusters of annoyance that could happen if I don’t.

Keeping Up With Your Bujo When You’re Not Feeling It

My other tip is to make bullet journaling a downtime activity. It’s something I do on breaks, at a leisurely pace over a cup of coffee. Honestly, it’s my permission to procrastinate. When I don’t want to do the next thing, I suddenly have to review my journal and write some things down. That only allows you to stall for so long, but trust me, I go ever every possible thing that I have to do in my bullet journal before my break is over and I need to tackle that odious task.

What’s most important is making bullet journaling a habit. Even if you’re not feeling it, the act of picking it up, looking at your logs, and writing one thing down keeps you in it. The joy of the format is that even if you do let it go for a day, a week, or an extended period of time, you can always pick it up and again and start over. You don’t work for it. When you have the habit down, it works for you.

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