The Bullet Journal Method

Cover ImageThe Bullet Journal Method, Track the Past, Order the Present, Design the FutureRyder CarrollPenguin
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11 notes/highlights

Created by Omar Fernández   – Last synced October 8, 2019

I: The Preparation

In the most connected time in history, we’re quickly losing touch with ourselves. Overwhelmed by a never-ending flood of information, we’re left feeling overstimulated yet restless, overworked yet discontented, tuned in yet burned out. As technology leaked into every nook in my life, with its countless distractions, my methodology provided an analog refuge that proved invaluable in helping me define and focus on what truly mattered. Now countless others have found it key in helping them reclaim agency over their lives.
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We can’t be true to ourselves if we don’t know what we want, and more importantly why, so that’s where we must begin.
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Leading an intentional life is about keeping your actions aligned with your beliefs. It’s about penning a story that you believe in and that you can be proud of.
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Your notebook greets you each morning with the pure, blank slate of an empty page. It serves as a small reminder that the day is as yet unwritten.
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II: The System

After a painful event, trying to explain how you feel in the moment can be exceptionally challenging, if not outright impossible. A joyful event can bring complex feelings, too—everything from gratitude to triumph to tears because a special loved one wasn’t there to share it. In both cases, they can be overwhelming and distracting. Event bullets allow you to put a pin in an experience, to temporarily offload it from your mind, so you can refocus on other priorities. This way you have a record safely stored in your journal, ready for you to revisit whenever you have more time, perspective, or wherewithal to sort out your emotional bureaucracy.
October 6, 201974

We honor the lessons we’ve learned by applying them to the next phase of our life. Big or small, migrate only the content and techniques that have proven themselves to be valuable, nothing else. A new notebook is not about starting over—it’s about leveling up.
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III: The Practice

In his beautiful commencement speech “This Is Water,” at Kenyon College, author David Foster Wallace talked about the day-to-day and how “the so-called ‘real world’ will not discourage you from operating on your own default settings, because the so-called ‘real world’ of men and money and power hums along quite nicely on the fuel of fear and contempt and frustration and craving and the worship of self.”22
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The Romans had a phrase, memento
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mori, which roughly translates to “remember death.”
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The next time you cross off a Task in your BuJo, slow down. Take a moment to pause and reflect on the impact of your accomplishment. What do you feel? If by chance you feel nothing—or maybe nothing but relief—then chances are the thing you’re working so diligently toward isn’t adding much value to your life.
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Your achievements have the power to nurture and guide you, but in order for that to happen, you need to take time to be grateful for them.
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Last Updated on January 20, 2023 by Omar Eduardo