monthly planner on bullet journal

Thinking of Starting a Bullet Journal? Make It Look Ugly

I started bullet journaling for the first time after seeing my friend using her own. Her journal didn’t have detailed drawings, fancy headings, calligraphy, or washi tape—she used a black pen to track down her dates, progress, and deadlines. She talked about how “ugly” her bullet journal looked when she showed me a page with more colours and drawings; I told her if it’s working for her then why does it matter how it looks? And then I got the idea to get my own.

bullet journal cover

I bought my bullet journal so I could explore the flexibility that the journal offered. It doesn’t have to be a Moleskine or even dotted paper for that matter. It just has to have paper that’s customizable for your own needs. I got the cheapest one at Staples. Seeing things on paper hits different for me than recording my deadlines on my tablet. It always comes back to that physical feeling of touching paper, doesn’t it?

weekly planner in bullet journal

I like that I can make my journal whatever I want. Since the start of the semester, I’ve been getting carried away with how much money I spend on eating out and excess groceries I don’t need. I created a spread dedicated to budgeting and listed down my budget goals.

bullet journal with highlights and writing

The planner I originally had on my tablet was just dates and deadlines for the month. I wanted to do other things in my journal such as the budget goals.

As you can see, my own journal is not pretty. The pen ink bleeds through the pages and I don’t have nice calligraphy. But it serves its function! Bullet journaling won’t work for everyone. But don’t let perfection or the need to make it look aesthetically pleasing stop you from letting it work in your favor. I started this journal with the intention that I can make it as “ugly” as I want it to. I had to experiment with how I formatted my weekly spreads and think about what other spreads I wanted in them.

There are a lot of high-end stationery items but you can get all the products you need at a dollar store. Now, if you'll excuse me, I'm gonna create another ugly spread in my journal. 🙂

bullet journal with black cursive writing
As the title says, it's an "anything page" where I write lists, thoughts, and whatever I want!

My bullet journal:

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