You should know by now that I love bullet journals. I don’t actually have one, but do I love to look at them. I marvel about the pretty layouts that people create. I marvel at the lettering, the calendars, the trackers of everything from water, to exercise, to social media followers. I ooh and aah over these works of art. And that’s what they are to me, works of art that a lot of time is spent creating. But, is a bullet journal a waste of your time?

What is a Bullet Journal?

There are a thousand different bullet journals. The original bullet was created by Ryder Carroll. Here’s a video link to his updated version of his tracking journal.

Somewhere along the line, though, someone took the simplicity of Ryder’s Bullet Journal and threw it out the window. Gone was the simple tracking technique that Ryder created. In came elaborate tracking sheets, daily, and weekly calendars.

Ryder’s monthly calendar was just a list of numbers down the side of a sheet. These updated calendars are full on two page spreads with boxes big enough to hold more than one event. Pretty artwork or lettering around the name of the month and possibly other artwork or stickers or washi tape to represent the month.

The daily list of activities that needed to get done is now included on elaborate daily sheets that also include pretty lettering and pictures. Banners, flags, flowers, and other items adorn each page.

And then there are the tracking sheets. Track your water, your exercise, your budget, your sleep patterns, your social media, and almost anything else that you wish to track.

Want to keep track of the books you read each month? Create a page for that. Need to track how many followers you have on Instagram or Facebook or Twitter? You can do that in a monthly spread or even a yearly spread that you keep at the end of your bullet journal.

Is A Bullet Journal a Waste of Time?

For me, the answer to that question would be yes. It’s a waste of time. I have no patience or skill to make pretty artwork around calendars or tracking lists. In fact, I find it difficult to remember to track something even after I spent time creating a tracker for it. So that tells you right there that it was a waste of time for me.

Some people have elaborate trackers complete with a picture of the activity they are tracking. If you are already an artist then this is something easy for you to create. If you’re not an artist, it can be a time-consuming pain in the ass.

But a bullet journal might not be a waste of time for you. We’re all different and I think that’s the idea behind most bullet journals. Whether you create elaborate pieces of art, the original tracker that Ryder created, or even something in between, a bullet journal is what you make it out to be.

And that’s why a whole business has been created behind bullet journaling. You can buy stencils that will help you create the spreads that you want.

You can even buy a bullet journal that comes with all the things you’ll need. Stencils, Washi tape, pens, and even stickers.

Or you can do what I do. An un-bullet journal. It’s my very minimalist version. I use a Moleskine notebook and just go day by day and write my to-do list, keep track of quotes, thoughts, beginnings of blog posts, gratitude statements, things I liked from the day, ideas, rants, and anything else that I can think of.

Over time, I found what works for me. I still have some pretty stencils that I bought to use in my bullet journal…but I don’t use them. I’m not even sure if I can find them since the move. But I do keep track of what I need to in my trusty journal. How do you keep track of your days?

I don't actually have one, but I love bullet journals. I love the pretty spreads and trackers. But is a bullet journal a waste of your time?

Check out my guest post on how I evolved my Journaling Journey over on Sizzling Towards Sixty. Sue’s theme in this month is Journaling in July and you’ll find journaling prompts and guest posts around journals and journaling. I hope you enjoy.