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I, like the rest of the internet, had heard of Bullet Journaling before this book was published. Bullet Journaling (and most journaling in general) was something I generally associated with Instagram-worthy double-page spreads and inexplicably expensive watercolour pens and washi tape (whatever the hell that is). I now know that while that does indeed describe many in the Bullet Journaling community, it was not the original purpose and motivation behind the method. Additionally, I did not realise the book I held was written by the very creator of the method (or even that it was a method with a creator as opposed to a hip new term for a standard journal).
Carroll writes and engaging introduction to his methodology; he describes his ADD, his subsequent struggles with organisation and focus, and how he eventually devised a bespoke way of managing this. Moreover, he explains how he came to understand this same method could help others with and without ADD and began to share his hard-won knowledge.
These chapters alone convinced me to trial it. When stated so reasonably, it was easy to see that a dozen post-its, 3 list apps, 2 online calendars, a few Excel spreadsheets and countless notebooks, is not particularly organised at all – I felt I had been kidding myself my whole life, as I had always considered myself very organised.
Even though Carroll dresses much of the theory behind the method in a lot of metaphor and analogy (a lot), the general idea just really spoke to me. The best (and most worthwhile) parts of this book are certainly the beginning and the chapters explaining the actual method and key components of a Bullet Journal. The last few chapters didn’t appeal to me much, and simply stated Carroll’s opinion and thoughts on very artistically focussed journals and how that added aesthetic work might impact functionality – quite diplomatically.
I’m likely to buy my own copy as e-book formatting was awful in my ARC copy, much of the tutorial section relied on diagrams I could not see and had to Google, and I would like to have a copy to annotate and reference.
A recommendation for anyone looking for a one-stop shop method of organising their life.
I received a copy of this book from HarperCollins UK via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
After Reading The Bullet Journal Method:
I have been Bullet Journaling now for – gosh – nearly 4 months now without hiatus and I can say it really works for me. My journal is nothing to brag about on social media, but it’s functional, it’s all in one place and is allowing me to manage my personal and professional lives in a way I feel is manageable. I begin in just black & white but I’ve gone a bit – dare I say? – wild and added a red pen and (!) the occasional highlighter.