QT: The Bullet Journal
The Analog Method for the Digital Age
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Hey folks, this is Dave Albert for quick take.
Hey folks! In this episode I’m going to talk to you about the bullet journal. I’ve looked at the bullet journal technique for note taking and task management and organizing your life before and it didn’t really work for me. But after listening to Ryder Carroll’s new book, he’s the creator of the technique. I have a much deeper understanding of how to implement it and it is fantastic.
So if you don’t know the journal is basically made up of collections and rapid logging of tasks. So your first collection is the index so you just take the first two or three pages I use the front inside and then the next two pages for my index on the front inside cover. You can you write your key so a dot is a task and acts as a completed task. left arrow is schedule, right arrows migrated arrow greater than or less that so a greater than is migrated to less than scheduled and a dash is a note. Use a circle for an event and a triangle without a bottom for an appointment and then fill that in once the appointment or meeting has been completed an asterisk that’s important an exclamation point if it is a deadline that it must be done today. So just write down index and pages one through three and then number your pages. So some of the types of collections that I have are my goals, some notes and reflections on bullet journal, Medit products are working on.
Growth, so just some thoughts on how I could live my life better. Media so different blogs, podcasts, websites, movies, documentaries, things like that that I want to keep track of and we’ll get back to. One day, one big thing so I try to take from each piece of content, whether that’s movie, video, book, audio, book, whatever, I try to figure out what biggest thing to take away from that is and keep track of it so that in the future I can come back and just look at that and possibly spark some some additional memories from what I got from that book. I know there’s a number of books I’ve listened to in the past that I completely lost anything from. I mean, I suppose may have absorb some of the book and integrated it into my own consciousness, but I don’t really I can’t point to anything that happened in it as good or bad. So that’s the idea I have not developed that habit. Speaking of habits, Habit trackers are quite popular.
You can see lots of examples of how people use their bullet terminals on YouTube, Twitter, Instagram, I’m sure Pinterest has a bunch then you get to what are the the real core of the task, task tracking and making sure that you’re working on the most important thing in your day collections, which are the future log. So you basically take a spread which is two pages that so if you lay the book open to any page, the two pages are blank. So what we use there for the future log is figure out about a third will figure out a third of the page and draw a line all the way across and then the other third line all the way across and then you get six so that gives me six months of the future so it’s still January now, I have February March April, May, June and July. And then that’s just to to write down something task and event an appointment that is that needs to happen within that month but you’re not necessarily you don’t see you don’t have to worry about it too. It’s now out of your mind but it’s not lost. So every time you look at the future log you’ll see that it’s there. Then we have the monthly log so I have January with the days of the month written down the side and then just decide that the day of the week so Monday, MTW are for Th SFU. U for Sunday so that you don’t have to SS and two T’s. Then to the right is January’s tasks. So the tasks that need to get done this month, or at least should get done as soon as I can get to them. So they’re not necessarily something I need to add in today. But maybe they are because I haven’t gone through and done my actual daily review yet. So each morning I do a review of the previous day or days tasks and migrate them into today or schedule them into the January tasks or potentially a specific day on the monthly list or the future log. Some people only do that at the end of the year. But I have so many things going on that if I did that, things would slip through I wouldn’t want to have to go through 30 days worth of daily tasks to find that I failed to do something and it’s probably a little more work needs to be done moving it each day. But I’d rather do that than lose something. And also it makes me consider don’t really do that today or do I just need to move that back to the monthly log or doesn’t even need to be done.
So it gives me a bit more of an opportunity to make sure that you know, I don’t lose anything. I don’t waste time doing something that doesn’t really need to be done, or I can schedule for some time in the future. The really interesting thing that the book gave that was much more than the technique for bullet journaling. It was more like a life philosophy really, I wrote down more, more things that I wanted to, to contemplate and consider then in any three books I’ve listened to this year there were just a lot of things so I would absolutely recommend getting the book I know I’ll listen to it again and you know like i said I’ve tried the bullet journal before but didn’t really click with me until listening to the book and there’s companion PDF which gave some some useful information some of the other potential collections that I’ve written down in bullet journal collection are Duty log so that’s interesting especially because this person that I heard it from said to write down two things a day and no repeats, No they may or may not have been part of the book. I can’t remember, but yeah, so if you can’t repeat anything, then you’ve got to, you know, be I think a bit deeper and be a bit more creative and what it is that you’re grateful for. So some, some deeper thinking collections.
So for planning and thinking for some problems and potentially for pre-development. So before I start to write some code pre-planning how that will be built. I’m not sure if that one’s going to work. I was about to do it yesterday, but I basically ended up just using a big white sheet of paper so I control diagrams and things that really didn’t need to be kept. So I don’t know if that will or will not work. I do need to do a lot more pre-work before starting development. I think that will help avoid mis-assuming, it’s not really making assumptions on how I’m going to implement something without thinking it through, which then causes me to redo it, which is fine. I mean, you know, we all have our own techniques, but I think thinking it through could be a little faster than trying to develop it. I know that some a lot of times I just use, you know, blank code and rewrite it and rewrite it until it’s right. But I think I could probably be a bit more efficient thinking it through a little bit more sometimes, you know, it’s hard when it feels like thinking isn’t actually working, but it actually can be even more useful to have it I need to develop.There’s a 54321 technique for setting goals. So this isn’t the 54321 get started. That’s not the five-second rule. That’s the 54321 goals. So what can you accomplish in five years and four months in three weeks in two days in one hour What can you accomplish in one hour it’s a good way to get you kick started in moving in the right direction habit tracker I mentioned just a you know a list of things that you either want to do or not do and the days of the week or the month for the year depending on, on how you want to draw it out and then just shade in the boxes so that you can see how you were doing for that habit. See, What else? Is it helpful log, not much different than the habit tracker I suppose. But I guess you could add in, I don’t know, you know if you’re tracking away tour or your exercise specifics as opposed to just did I do it?
Yeah, that’s that’s about the biggest portion of the collections that would be of interest. I thought that, I’m really happy with it. I’ve been using it for a little over a week, I guess. Well, actually, I can tell you exactly how long because it would be the first day of my daily task rapid journal since the 22nd, so yeah so we delay about that. Yeah and so then your daily tasks you just rapid log those you record daily of the month
and then you can do your planning before the day dot for each of the things you want to get accomplished an asterisk beside which of those are important if any of them have a deadline I mean you can make up whatever key you want. The whole point of the bullet journal is that it should work for you not follow someone else’s specific example which I think is also why I had issues getting started with it when I tried quite a number of years ago I think it was back when I first heard about it I mean as in when it was first released into the public. Yeah, and then put that dot you just exit out when you’re finished if you need to migrate it or move it to the next day or whatever you just take that dot and turn it into a greater than if you want to move it back to your future log less than and I’d love to hear how others fair using any, any specific techniques or bullet journal in general so as always you can email me [email protected] or on Twitter @dave_albert thanks for listening.
Until next time remember any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic