5 Things I Wish I Knew Before Starting a Bullet Journal

Some of my bujo pens

Continuing on with my bullet journal series, today I wanted to talk about the things I wish I knew before I started a bullet journal.

To give you some context, I’ve been bullet journaling solidly now since mid-march, and I’ve learnt a lot along the way. Some of which, would have been handy to know beforehand!

1. No Becca, you do not need ALL of those pens. 

Okay so for reals, it seems that I have a bit of a problem with stationery. Since having a bullet journal, I can’t stop myself from buying new pens when I see them. I’ve bought 2 big packs of pens and 5 expensive individual pens since starting my bullet journal. Plus three to write with. Oh and a pack of black fine liners. Yeah. I have a problem. Having this many pens is not necessary. Sure, it gives you options, and yes it does give you a reason to buy pretty acrylic pen pots to display them in. But seriously. I can only use one pen at a time. If I were to start again, I’d pick one pack of pens. And then try to stop. Probably.

2. Etsy has the prettiest washi tape you’ll ever find

When I was first out buying supplies for my bullet journal, I went into Paperchase & Hobbycraft and picked up two or three nice washi tapes. They’re nice and perfectly adequate but were quite expensive. Then, I remembered that Etsy was a thing, and let me tell you, they do a LOT of nice washi tapes. Literally, any colour, any pattern, and design. If you can think of it, there’s a pretty decent chance it exists. And if you look around a bit and compare sellers, you can get a lot for your money. Shop til you drop! I’d personally recommend these sellers: EllaElizabethShopTheDesignerCardCo, BlossomBuysStore and SandRBits.

3. Stop worrying about my handwriting. It’s a skill, it gets better with practice. 

At first, I was really caught up on how my handwriting looked. I didn’t know how to draw fancy titles, and because I’m usually at a computer all day, the need to physically write things down doesn’t come about often. So my handwriting had got rather shoddy over time. Not to worry though. Now I’m fully into the swing of things, my handwriting has got better, and, I’m learning slowly but surely how to write pretty titles and cool looking calligraphy. Faux Calligraphy is my best bud.

4. Stamps are effort. Don’t bother. 

In my bullet journal hauling at the start of this process, I went absolutely crazy for stamps. I bought a sheet of stamps, some alphabet stamps, and then a whole pack of little icon stamps (think hearts, starts etc). Yeah. Stamps, as cool as they are, aren’t quick and easy to use. I did use the alphabet stamps a fair amount in the beginning of my journal, but the rest? They haven’t been touched. Call me lazy, but I just can’t be bothered to clean them after use. Which makes me not use them, because I don’t want to ruin them. You see my problem. Unless you’re super dedicated, don’t buy stamps - they’re too much hassle!

5. How organised it would get me (legit) - I would have started sooner. 

So I never really realise how unorganised I was, but as I said in my post a couple weeks back, starting a bullet journal has really helped me get a grip on everything, and be more organised in all aspects of my life. I suppose the whole point of a bullet journal is to help you organise stuff, but I’m pleasantly surprised that it’s actually worked. For example, in my free time especially I’ve reached a whole new level of productivity I’ve never got to before. It’s helped me start paying attention to things, and because I know I’ve got some way of noting it down and tracking what I’ve done, I’ve really started to try and learn new things, read more, and just try and improve myself. I wish I’d started sooner.

Here's my pride and joy

There we have it. Five things I wish I’d known before I started bullet journaling. Hopefully, if you’re just starting out this will be able to give you some pointers in what not to do (buy fifty billion pens), and if you haven’t started one yet, give it a go! Tell me how you get on!

Much Love