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Yesterday I was at a workshop, sitting at a round table with a few work friends. The day’s presentations were about to get rolling, so I pulled out my journals to get ready for some serious note-taking.
Oh, right. My lips were dry. (Obviously, we can’t have that.)
I scrounged around in my bag for a few more seconds, found my lip gloss, applied it, and put it back in my bag.
When I looked up again, my classmate next to me had my bullet journal in her hands and was flipping through it.
She had never heard of bullet journals before and was visibly intrigued. She asked me a few questions about how a bullet journal works. Then she asked a really important question – one that I, too, was confused about before I started a bullet journal: what do you do about skipped pages?
This question inspired me to write a post because you may be wondering the same thing.
I’ve tried a few solutions, and I’ve finally found one that works best for me: buying a separate journal.
In this post, I’ll explain exactly why I purchased my second journal not too long after the first. Plus you’ll learn how to figure out if you could benefit from more than one bullet journal!
Pin me to come back to this post later!
Why I Bought My First Bullet Journal
You also know I’m big on productivity and managing what I do with my time. I truly think that you are rewarded for being a good steward of your time.
Anyway, I had been using iNotes and Evernote religiously for everything – brainstorming, list-making, writing, reflecting…And I still do use those apps for lots of things. But I was getting to the point where I felt like I needed to write things down with pen and paper.
* complete customization
* several journal style options
* productivity-enhancing processes
My first bullet journal arrived in March 2018, and I haven’t looked back since.
So where on earth did bullet journal #2 come from?
Why I Bought My Second Bullet Journal
Well, I started to think that maybe I had too many major interests/endeavors to sort them all in one journal.
Don’t get me wrong – it can definitely be done, but I thought it would save a lot of time to just create an entire notebook for my freelance medical copywriting services (especially as I ramp them up over the next few months!)
I really did try to avoid having to go this route though. First, I tried dividing the journal in half. The first half was dedicated to everything except copywriting, and the second half was for copywriting only.
I also tried jumping around and estimating blank pages.
It annoyed me to know that there were random pages being skipped just to start a new section. So I came up with a permanent solution: buy a new bullet journal!
SHOULD YOU BUY MORE THAN ONE BULLET JOURNAL? ASK YOURSELF THESE 4 QUESTIONS.
1. Are there multiple parts of your life that you journal about…a lot?
As a multi-passionate millennial, you probably have a lot of different interests, involvements, and responsibilities. That means the things you’ll be including in your bullet journal won’t necessarily fall neatly into the same broad categories all the time.
For example, I primarily started a bullet journal for scheduling and goal-setting. My regular schedule includes work, blogging, and things I need to do at home.
But I’m also a freelance medical copywriter.
Can you think of categories in your life that might warrant separate journals? Maybe you’d prefer one for school, one for work, and one for home life? Or one for your main job and one for your side hustles? Do you travel a lot? In that case, it may be helpful to have one dedicated entirely to your travel planning and adventures.
Whatever the distinction, it’s up to you whether the subject warrants a separate journal. (But do you really have to think that hard for an excuse to buy a new journal?!)
Okay, next question!
2. Do you want to keep certain things private?
But there’s always a part of me that thinks back to Harriet the Spy (one of my fave movies!) and the drama that ensued when her notebook was found and all its contents put on blast! I’m really not trying to end up like my girl Harriet. (I’m still embarrassed for her!)
It might be more practical to keep one bullet journal for things you wouldn’t be terribly upset about if someone saw, and saving your other one for more private thoughts.
For example, you might use one for scheduling your days, weeks, and months, and the other for spreads like gratitude journaling, habit trackers, etc.
3. Do you have really big handwriting?
Logistically, big handwriting is gonna take up more space than smaller handwriting. You’ll probably run out of space in your bullet journal soon if you have rather large handwriting.
It may make more sense for you to buy a couple of bullet journals upfront since you’ll probably run through them faster.
(By the way, if you only write on one side of the page, the same idea applies. But don’t be afraid to write on both sides. I’ve found that the pages in my second bullet journal are SUPER thick, so there’s almost no bleeding at all *happy dance*.)
4. Do you want one for “work” and one for “play”?
Think about the reasons you started a bullet journal. Did you want to express your creativity through color, art, and doodles? Did you want a very practical system to remain organized? Or was it a combination of both?
If I mix artsy pages with my practical spreads, I’m more likely to be distracted which is exactly what I wanted to avoid in the first place.
If you’re good at self-discipline and managing the time you spend in your bullet journal, you might be able to combine the two styles with no problem. But I know myself, and separating the two would be the best for me from a time management perspective.