The bucket journal method – Ryder Caroll

Everyone who knows me knows that I love being crafty! If you ever enter a stationary shop with me, good luck trying to get me out of it. From glittery colored-pencils, metallic shades, pattern-custom tapes, acrylic painting tubes to minimalist notebooks, my inner creative side gets all excited as soon as I envision time to get crafty.

The extremely heavy workload of my university along the increasing demands of adulthood made me consider starting a Bullet Journal as it signified to me, an opportunity for both taking the time to be artsy and managing to get more organized. A quick scroll on Pinterest looking at the inspiring spreads and layouts and I was convinced. I bought the book of Ryder Caroll, the inventor of this method who thoroughly explains both the theory and practice to future bullet journalists.

What I liked most amidst his explanations is the primary goal of being more intentional about our time. Our increasingly busy and digitalized lives leave us drained by a heavy input of information that does not allow us to make the right decisions and to dedicate our time to meaningful things. Ultimately, the main reason behind using a bullet journal is to help ourselves to become more mindful of our time and energy by planning our day, month and year meaningfully.

His ideas were often introduced by a quote I particularly liked “We can’t make time, we can only take it”. Deeper explanations are given on the very interesting idea stating that we must pursue meaning instead of happiness and thus making time for things that matter to us, who will reflect the person that we are and want to be. Bullet journalling also enables us to achieve our goals and dreams by deconstructing the process we need to go through in order to thrive and make them come true. As Ryder Caroll states ” Use your Bullet Journal to identify the things that inspire further inquiry. Once you know what grabs your interest, set your goals”.

Journalling is a daily practice, a bullet journal is NOT a diary, rather if you intend to follow Caroll’s method based on his own experience and years of research; it is a powerful tool to track the past, order the present and design the future.

You definitely don’t need to be creative or to be artsy to have a bullet journal, I just really like expressing myself artistically and that is why I have chosen to (try to) make my bullet look as pretty as it does on Pinterest! If you are interested, I might start posting about my own journal 🙂

Ryder Caroll’s bullet journal follows a specific pattern:

  1. Key : this page has all the signs and shortcuts you will use repeatedly to symbolize a task, event, deadline…
  2. Index: A place to gather the page numbers of the different sections in order to make it easier for yourself to find what you are looking for
  3. Future Log: A general overview of the coming months
  4. Month Log: An overview of the month we are in, with its specific tasks, events etc..
  5. Daily Log: A daily planner
  6. Collections: Habit tracker, memories, best restaurants, books to read, movies to watch, quotes you like…

Again, you don’t have to follow this pattern if you don’t want to, the most important thing is for the bullet journal to meet YOUR needs. It is designed to be a very flexible tool, something that is supposed to make your life easier not harder!

Perfectionists, be aware –> Your bullet journal does not have to look perfect or to be stunningly artistic and beautiful.


7 thoughts on “The bucket journal method – Ryder Caroll

  1. Ooh i love bullet journaling! i mainly use it as a pretty calendar and task list and it has improved so much of my productivity and keeping everything checked and organized. Loved your post 🙂


  2. Pingback: Book reviews according to language – Aïcha's bookshelf

  3. I tried to start bullet journaling, but I felt I didn’t have anything worth putting in there. Now that I’ve sort of gotten the hang of book planning, I want to try my hand at bullet journaling again.


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