Bullet Journal

I’ve been looking back through my blogs trying to work out when I started keeping a Bullet Journal and I’m still not sure – maybe two years? Anyway… I still LOVE it and I wanted to share a new layout I’ve been using that’s working really well for me.

I don’t know if my Filofax would technically count as a bullet journal – but I like being able to move pages around, keep sections within dividers and remove pages I no longer need without it getting messy. I still use A5 notepads for designing and they slot nicely in the front.

My Filofax is divided into five sections: Diary, Work, Home (meal planning, crop rotation etc), Contacts and Info. The work section is by far the most used and has morphed into a work/life hybrid with yearly, monthly and weekly planners.

Don’t you just love a planner before you’ve filled it with lots of to-do’s?!

I’ve been using the above layout for a good few months and I feel like it gives me a good balance. I don’t have an overwhelming amount on my weekly list but I’m motivated to get it all done because I can see an overview of what I need to do for the rest of the month. I use the monthly layout as more of a master list of what I will focus on each week with the weekly plan going into a lot more detail.

Some of my work involves sitting at a desk and some doesn’t. By dividing my weekly plan into ‘office’ and ‘make/do’ I tend to give myself a better balance each day between time at my desk and time spent making. Having a section for ‘life’ on both plans means that I also keep track of the weeks or days where I have a lot on outside of work.

My favourite thing about my new weekly layout is the colour coding! In Courtney Carver’s Soulful Simplicity book she talks about having a master list and just picking three things off it each day. Around the same time I saw a post on Instagram (I think it was by Joanne Hawker) saying that she colours in three things on her to-do list so that she’s just focusing on those three things – I loved that idea!

I use my days list at the edge of the page as a mini diary and also as a colour-code for what I’m planning to do each day. I might only colour in one thing per day or I might colour in ten… it depends how big the jobs are! But it helps me to think about my priorities, what is realistic to do in a day and to focus on one thing at a time.

I also often have an ‘It can wait’ list. Those non-urgent jobs that will become urgent at some point and creep onto the planners!

Are you a Bujo lover?

Habit Tracking

I’m loving taking part in March Meet the Maker over on Instagram!

The photo I shared of my habit tracker sparked a lot of interest so I thought I would talk about it a bit more on here…

There are so many lovely inspirational layout ideas for habit trackers on Pinterest and Instagram and I initially planned to create my own layout. But then I found this one from Clementine Creative and it was perfect…so that saved me a job!

It’s available in different sizes and is free to download as a pdf here – or you can pay to get an editable version if you want to type in your list and days rather than adding them by hand.

Why Habit Track?

At the beginning of this year, I knew that I didn’t want to set myself any big goals or resolutions. After a very busy year last year I was looking forward to being less busy and giving myself a better work/life balance. But that doesn’t just happen on it’s own!

I knew I needed a plan to make sure I was getting work done but not doing too much (an easy habit to slip into when you don’t have specific office hours). I also wanted to get into a routine with some things I’ve been doing sporadically for a while (for example – meditation) and create new habits that I knew would benefit my health.

Is it working?

In my experience, habits take a long time to build and not long to fall down! I put flossing on here because I have a tendency to floss every day for months and then miss a few days… and then just stop until I see the dentist and get told off… and then it starts over again. I’m getting better at not stopping things if I miss a few days because colouring in my pretty chart motivates me!

The thing that has surprised me most is that I don’t eat five portions of fruit and veg every day! I was planning to put seven per day as the target on my tracker because that’s the new recommendation and I thought I was easily having five. Turns out I have a tendency to eat lots of portions of the same thing each day – I’ll happily eat a few portions of carrots – but then that would only count as one portion. And however many different fruit and veggies I put in a smoothie… it counts as a maximum of two portions. And the portion size guidelines have doubled since I last checked! I’m really glad I put that on the tracker as it’s making me count each day.

Sleep habits

The most beneficial things on the tracker for me are those related to my sleep habits and working hours. I’m pretty sure I’m a nocturnal animal and as I’m self employed I could in theory sleep when I want and work when I want. But over the years I’ve discovered a lot of down-sides to being a night owl…

  • Getting up late makes me feel lazy! Even if I’ve worked until 2am the night before… It feels inappropriate and somewhat defensive to explain that to the UPS man when I answer the door in my pyjamas at 11am.
  • When everyone else is finished for the day I’m still working and miss all the fun things!
  • It’s difficult to develop a consistent sleep routine because I’m out of sync with everyone else… and insomnia kicks in when I don’t have a routine.

Small changes such as putting my phone into flight mode by 10pm (so that I’m not browsing Pinterest until midnight!) have really helped improve my sleep. Giving myself an earlier bedtime means I’m now averaging about 7.5 hours sleep compared to less than 7 hours previously – and I feel better for it.

On top of extra sleep most nights, I’m also enjoying a new slow start to my weekdays. I’m setting my alarm early to give myself some Pinterest/Instagram browsing time, followed by arm exercises and a passive chest stretch to help my knitting pains (shoulder, elbows and wrists) and ten minutes meditation. Doing all of that before I start work feels good!

What would you put on your habit tracker?


After making the decision to not set myself unrealistic goals and targets for 2018, I’ve been feeling like a bit of a spectator of everyone else’s goal setting!

January can be tough. Beardie and I started a tradition a few years back of having a break mid-January to celebrate the anniversary of when we met and to have a rest and something to look forward to in this long grey month. So last weekend we spent a few days in Grasmere enjoying beautiful views and lots of warm hearty food.

At the beginning of January my Instagram feed seemed to be fairly evenly split between those who were jumping head first into the new year – exercising, dieting, setting work and life goals and those who were crawling into the new year feeling overwhelmed, unmotivated and unwell.

For me the first couple of weeks were definitely a crawl. I came down with Pityriasis just before Christmas, which meant I had a few weeks of very little sleep and generally feeling a bit crappy.

Now that we’ve had a lovely relaxing break and I have (mostly) recovered from Pityriasis, I’m feeling ready for 2018!

Although I’m trying to plan less this year, I’m really missing having goals to motivate myself – so rather than goals I am working on ‘habits’. I find it difficult to get started with a habit, but once I’m in the habit of doing something and can feel the benefits than it’s much easier to keep up.

So I’ve made myself a habit tracker (it’s not pretty so I won’t show you…but eventually I’ll do something pretty like this) and I’m working on getting into a routine with things I think will make me healthier and happier.

They’re all things which I’ve been doing sporadically for a while, but I want to become part of my everyday routine – such as ten minutes of meditation, arm and wrist exercises to ease my RSI and switching on flight mode at 10pm. Hopefully when I get into the habit of doing these things everyday (or at least every week-day) then they will just become part of my normal routine and won’t feel like a chore.

I hope you’re surviving January! x

Bullet Journal 2018

I haven’t shared images of my bullet journal for a long time…mainly because it tends to get a bit messy and doesn’t look pretty in pictures!

But I’m still a huge fan of the concept of bullet journaling and I’m getting mine ready for 2018. The main thing that appealed to me initially was the idea of keeping everything in one place – my diary, work lists, plans, ideas and information. Rather than lots of notebooks and random bits of paper I could keep everything together!

My first attempt wasn’t great. The blogs I read about “how to start a bullet journal” suggested numbering pages and having an index to make it easy to find things. This didn’t work for me at all and I wasted a lot of time flicking back and fourth through that note book!

I think it’s about finding what works for you – and for me that’s a filofax. I can section things off with dividers and easily remove/add in pages so it’s really flexible. Whilst juggling two jobs it has been invaluable.

I have a diary section with monthly spreads so I can see at glance what I’m doing both socially and with work.

A freelance section where I have a monthly plan, weekly plans and then more detailed lists for each week. As you can see I haven’t planned much for next year yet!

I like having an overview showing my focus for each month/week. It gives me structure and keeps me motivated.

Most of my designing happens in seperate sketchbooks – but I get small ones that slot into my filofax so that everything is still together.

I have a home section which includes meal plans, wedmin, crop rotation planning and diy plans.

And finally contacts and info…which is just two pages of things I forget (such as my car reg!).

My bujo is fairly simple – but I love it! After initially getting a bit overwhelmed by all of the “how to” information, I’ve definitely found what works for me.

And I do love an excuse to use stickers!