Sweater Mermaid Watercolor Speed Paint Chit Chat - Goal Planning

Happy New Year!  How are you?  I am using a word of the year this go around and my word is "routine" aka "consistency".

So far so good and I feel like I'm balancing on a super thin balance beam and I get some steps figured out, then I fall right off.  So I'm watching that and being mindful of what is working and what isn't.  One of the things that has worked so well for me last year was bullet journaling and planning one week at a time/day at a time.  

This is everything I use for journaling/planning

Things I have learned:

  1. Plan ahead of time - I figure out what free time I even have available daily and then from there I plan out my ideal week.
     
  2. Broadly plan for the week or day - I am trying not to get too specific about what I do in the time allotted, just committed to doing it.  Like exercise for example, I will say my days to exercise are Mondays and Wednesdays in the evenings.  Then from there, I just go to the gym.  On that day I might look at the classes available and whatnot but I am basically focused on getting TO the gym, once I'm there, I'm committed so I can choose what I want to do but the bottom line is I am there.  Same thing with art, making videos, etc.  Just do it and plan out the details later.
     
  3. When I "shoot from the hip", nothing gets done.  Having a completely blank slate for the next day doesn't serve me well at all and I end up not being productive at all.  Having BBRs (before bed routines) where I figure out what I'm wearing, get my kid's outfits ready, their lunches too, look at my schedule for the next day, etc all adds up to getting things in line for the next day and limiting the real-time decisions I have to make that day.  I read this book last year, "The Power of Habit", and I learned that my motivation is highest in the beginning of the day so I try to make the best choices for what I want to accomplish.  Tackle main goals for the day, drink more water, eat more veggies, move my body, do the hardest thing first, etc.  

Here's a post I wrote last year about bullet journaling.

This print is available here.

Are you into planning too? Yay or nay, let me know down below. Definitely share your planning tips if you have them, I need all the help I can get.

5 Ways Bullet Journaling Changed My Life

No, but seriously.  It did.  For a long time I thought having goals was being self-centered and never being happy with where I currently was in life.  Because of this I didn't organize my plans at all, I would just have things I wanted to do without plans attached, which is basically just wishing.  I believe one needs to be grateful and thankful for the whole journey but there is nothing wrong with pushing yourself in education, status, art, joy, etc.  Many many things didn't work in the past for me and day to day I would start from scratch on things I wanted to focus on, listed in my head or on scraps of paper all over the place.   That's when I turned to the bullet journal and now I'm getting closer to my dreams every day. There are key things I love about it.  Let's get into it.  

Brain Dump

I have ONE place that is my main spot for my notes, to dos, ideas, what have you. Last year I started to plan daily.  Writing the day of the week, the date, the hours in that day, and then I knew what time I realistically had to work with for the day.   Whatever I had dumped onto the page could then be prioritized and plugged into the available spaces of free time.  Once I completed the task, it was crossed off.  Nothing like ticking a box or crossing off an item on my list.  

Brings Order to the Chaos

I have an index in my journal so I actually know what page my notes are on, a project idea bubble chart, etc.  My thoughts have some sort of order that I can come back to reference when I want to.  When it's time to work, I can get to work and not waste time looking for my info.  It is awesome. 

Bird's Eye View of To Dos

Rarely do things sneak up on me, I put down everything that is happening during the current month and from a high level I know that I really don't have "all month to do  X".  There is a play date here, wisdom teeth appointment there, movies here, etc.  This helps to further prioritize my time and understand what really matters and what can probably be put off until next month or later in the year.

Flexible

I use a dot journal where I can write out whatever I want and change things up when needed.  It is a blank dot grid journal with page numbers.  The dots make it easy to draw lines when I want to.  This is one of my favorite things because if something isn't working out with the way I am journaling, I can change it.  No inked dates, grids, or calendars already printed on the pages.  It is literally a blank slate and it is freeing.  

Tangible

There is something about writing things down, pen to paper, that makes it more likely that you will actually do what you set out to do.  Having digital references are great, I use Google calendar and Evernote but when I write things down, I tend to accomplish more of what I set out to do.

If you have ever been curious about bullet journaling, I highly recommend you get into it.  Here are a few references that talk about the concept further.  It's all about baby steps and knowing what works for you and what doesn't.

I list out everything I use for journaling here

Ryder Carroll, the creator of bullet journaling: How to Bullet Journal

Rachel from That'sChic - Bullet Journal Setup for 2017

Do you bullet journal? What helps you stay organized?

P.S. Join my list, The Creative Conversation, to hear more about my bullet journaling and behind the scenes studio sneak peeks.