A Weekly Dokibook Layout

Today I thought I would share a weekly layout in my new planner. I am currently using a Constellations Dokibook with the week on two pages hourly inserts from Filofax. I actually really like these inserts, the paper is nice quality and the layout works with how I plan, I don’t always use the timings, but it’s a good space for writing lists.

This week has been a little weird in that I’ve been too busy to actually plan anything out. Normally my weekly layout would be a little fuller than this. The stickers I used are from TsuStore and Itspaperco. I have a EC kit from HelloPetitePaper that I’m using this month and the header and number stickers are from PaperKumaco (I love this shop and Jeanette does also custom header stickers which are great).

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Large Constellations Dokibook Unboxing

Back on my March plan with me post I mentioned that I was changing up my organisation system and how I use my bullet journal. As part of that I wanted to move all my blog related things to a separate planner. Because of this I started doing some research into ring bound planners and came across Dokibook.

This is a company based in China who make ring binders similar to the Kikki.K and Filofax. I admit I was a little dubious at first because this was coming from China but I came across a number of people in the UK who have ordered from them. Fortunately I had nothing to worry about, the shipping from China was extremely quick. I got this within a week of ordering it. Another pro of using Dokibook is their ring binders are much cheaper than the Filofax alternative. This ended up being half the price of a similar Filofax I looked at, and that was including shipping.

The ring binder I picked out was the Constellations in the large size. The large is the equivalent of the A5 filofax. Pretty much as soon as I saw this binder I knew I had to buy it. I will pretty much buy anything with stars on it.

One downside of the Dokibook is that it doesn’t come with inserts, you have to buy them separately. I suppose this is a good thing if you have specific inserts you prefer. The binder did come with a plastic page marker and a top loading pocket. It also came with 6 plastic page dividers and though they are pretty nice, I will be making my own as soon as I get paper that matches this cover.

If you’re looking for a cheapish ring bound planner this is definitely one shop to look at.

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Plan With Me: March

I’m back again with another update on my bullet journal. I know calling this post a ‘plan with me’ is a bit silly since I’ve already done all the planning, but apparently plan with me’s are a thing just now. I should also mention that this may be my last bullet journal update for a while, I’ll explain more further on but basically I’m changing how I use my bullet journal so it will work better for me.

Plan With Me: March | bluchickenninja.com

I chose a blue colour scheme for March and picked this kit from Harriet Wright Designs to go along with it. I don’t really think of March as being blue but I’ve been having all sorts of problems actually getting my hands on the kit I originally bought for March (if you follow me on Twitter you may already know about these problems). I also decided to try doing a little brush lettering this month and it almost actually worked, I don’t know what the trick is to brush lettering but apparently I did something right.

Plan With Me: March | bluchickenninja.com

I like keeping some of my more long term lists in the back of my bullet journal. But I wanted to note these pages down in my index somehow. Eventually I decided to just number out each page in my index, this way I can add the pages at the back in and it’s faster to write in pages at the front too.

Plan With Me: March | bluchickenninja.com

This is another tiny thing I added to my yearly lists to make them easier to find. I added a little washi tape to the edge of the page, it makes finding those specific pages just a little easier.

Plan With Me: March | bluchickenninja.com

Now this is where I’ve made the biggest change. The thing with my course is it’s a lot of work. In the past week I’ve had 3 deadlines and 1 interim deadline, and there is a lot of things to do along with that. I will admit I’ve been stressing out ever so slightly over it. But one thing I’ve found is that using my bullet journal has actually been stressing me out. I can’t even explain why. It’s almost like I want to make this thing look nice but at the moment I need something thats more functional than pretty.

Over the past week I’ve changed how I use it (again!), I use it more as a daily planner now. I have one day to a page, the hours in the day go down one half and on the other I write out a list of everything I need to do that day. I’ve found I really like using it this way. I need to buy something to use as a more long term planner, possibly a Filofax though they can get quite expensive. But for just now my bullet journal has turned into a daily to-do list.

I also imagine no matter what I decide to buy you’ll hear about it at some point.

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My February Bullet Journal Set Up

My January bullet journal post was pretty popular so I thought I would write on for February too since I’ve made a few little changes and I really like how it’s looking just now.

My February Bullet Journal Set Up | bluchickenninja.com

Since it was February I decided my colour scheme would be pink. The only pink highlighter I had was a little more fluorescent than I wanted but it still looks okay. The stickers I chose to match this colour was a small cacti kit I got from TsuStore on Etsy (I love her stickers so definately check them out if you’re into that sort of thing). These stickers have a little teal in them as well so my colour scheme for this month ended up being a mix of pink and blue. I really like how this ended up looking.

My February Bullet Journal Set Up | bluchickenninja.com

The big thing I’ve changed this month is the headers. Everything is much simpler now. I’ve tried to take out all the extra stuff I don’t use, this also has the added bonus that it doesn’t take long to set the month up. I would prefer to have a little more definition between the days. Just so it’s easier to tell what day I’m writing info in. But I like how my calendar looks so much I think adding extra lines would ruin it.

My February Bullet Journal Set Up | bluchickenninja.com

My blog planner for February is now spread over two pages. I know it seems silly to have two calendars for this but it’s the way that works best for me. On the left calendar I plan out the month, this is where I have space to make changes. On the left I have a calendar where I can track what I need to work on for a post and all the social media stuff that goes with it.

My February Bullet Journal Set Up | bluchickenninja.com

My brain dump page is exactly the same but I’ve changed how I do my dailies again. The page is now split into three columns that are just wider than the Erin Condren boxes. This means I can buy sticker kits made for the Erin Condren and they will fit into my daily spreads. I find sticker kits are a good way to add a little bit of colour into my bullet journal without having to spend huge amounts of time on it.

Just wondering, would anyone be interested in this becoming a monthly thing?

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How To Start A Bullet Journal

How To Start A Bullet Journal | bluchickenninja.com

It’s the start of a new year, the perfect time to get organised so I thought I would do a little post on how to start using the bullet journal system. The bullet journal system was originally invented by Ryder Carroll, you can find his video on it here. This system is essentially a fancy to-do list. I’ve been using a bullet journal for over two years now so I thought I would share how I use mine and some tricks I’ve found along the way.

You should note I don’t use my bullet journal the exact way Ryder Caroll says to in his video. The great thing about the bullet journal system is you can change things if you don’t like them. Or find something else that works better. It’s totally up to you.

You will need:

  • A notebook. I know the Dotted Leuchtturm 1917 is a really popular notebook for bullet journalling but I would say to start off with don’t buy a fancy notebook. Actually if you’ve never used a bullet journal before don’t go out and buy a notebook at all. Start in something you’ve already got lying around. Try it out for a few weeks and find out what you like first. You may find you prefer lined or grid paper to dots.
  • A pen. Again you don’t need to go out buying fancy pens. I have a Muji 0.38 gel pen and a Staedtler fineliner in the photo but that is what I have lying around.
  • A ruler. A lot of people tell me they think their bullet journal is messy and one easy way to fix that is using a ruler to draw lines. You can do it freehand if thats the look you want. But (in my opinion) a ruler is essential.

I really need to emphasise that you don’t have to go out and buy a £20 notebook to start your bullet journal. For this post I’ve used a lined Leuchtturm 1917 but you don’t have to buy one. This is literally just the first notebook I picked up and I’ve started these examples on the first blank page I found.

How To Start A Bullet Journal | bluchickenninja.com

The key is a really important part of the bullet journal. Because you’re essentially just writing monthly and daily to-do lists the key tells you what you’re doing with the tasks on that list. I usually start out with everything as a dot. That way you can change the dot depending on what you do with that task.

So I will either cross off the task or use the ‘more than’ symbol to note I’ve not done that task and moved it to another day. The dot will get changed to a note if I’ve written down something that I don’t actually need to do. Just something that is happening on that specific day. The exclamation mark is for important things I need to do or remember.

How To Start A Bullet Journal | bluchickenninja.com

The index page is where you keep a note of all the pages in your bullet journal and what’s in them. One advantage to the Leuchtturm is that the pages are already numbered and it has an index already laid out for you. You can still have something similar in other notebooks, you just need to lay out the index page and write page numbers in by hand. It’s a good idea to keep this page updated even if you don’t actually refer to it. Once you’ve moved on to another notebook the index makes it easy to go back and look for information.

How To Start A Bullet Journal | bluchickenninja.com

The monthly spread is similar to what you would find in a regular planner. It’s just laid out differently. You write out the days of the month down the left hand side of the page. Then note the days of the week next to that. I like adding a line in to define the weeks. I find that makes it easier to look at.

On the right hand page I have a brain dump. At the start of the month I write down notes and everything I need to do. I will then continue to update this page throughout the month as I complete tasks and think of new things I need to do or note down. This page doesn’t need to have headings, I just like separating all my tasks out. It’s easier that way to figure out what’s important.

How To Start A Bullet Journal | bluchickenninja.com

I fold my daily pages in half, mostly because my handwriting is quite small and I don’t see the point of wasting a whole bunch of paper. The left hand side of the page is where my dailies go. This is basically a list of everything that needs to get done on that specific day. I write mine out the night before but you can do it on the day as well. The whole point of this is to write everything you need to do as quickly as possible. If you’re spending an hour making your daily spread look nice you’re doing something wrong (I’m not saying that it’s bad to make your bujo pretty, but if you spend time on that you have less time for the stuff you need to do that day).

On the right side of the page I have space for notes. This is where I keep track of the blog and instagram posts I have going up that week. I also write out anything tasks I think of that need to be done at some point. Not necessarily on that day or in that week.

If you find you use a certain amount of space each day you can always try laying out a 1 or 2 page weekly view (like a regular planner) instead of laying out your daily spread each day. This really depends on how you like using the bullet journal system and what works for you. I find I tend to go between daily and weekly pages. It really just depends on how I feel.

How To Start A Bullet Journal | bluchickenninja.com

The back pages are where I put all my messy notes. Usually the very back page is where I try out pens. Then any journalling or college notes or to-do lists that don’t fit in my daily pages go here. I don’t bother adding these pages to the index because it’s not things I need again. Another way to look at it is the calendar stuff (monthly/ weekly/ daily pages) go at the front, everything else goes in the back.

Thanks for reading.
Find me on Twitter, Instagram, Goodreads.