Quick and Simple Spreads to Start Your Bullet Journal With!
I’ve been using a bullet journal on and off since college. I originally started it because I found it easier to keep track of my assignments with the flexibility that a bullet journaling system offers. I’m the kind of person who throws everything on a list. Like, everything. I break things down into the tiniest tasks, no matter how obvious they may seem, because I’m always nervous I’ll forget a step and have to start over. Thanks, anxiety.
I use it now as a way to stay organized and motivated post graduation. It helps me to make sure I get at least one productive thing done every day, which is great because being unemployed tends to put me in an ‘I could just nap’ kind of mood.
I’ve spent hours watching ‘plan with me’ videos and way too much time looking for inspiration on Pinterest. The spreads you find on there are like actual works of art. I just scroll and scroll until I notice the puddle of drool starting to form.
Over the years, I’ve tried tons of different spreads. I’ve tried to make them beautiful and gone overboard with decorations. It got a little excessive, to be honest. There was a time when I’d consistently spent 2 – 3 hours on my weekly spreads alone. Not going to lie, I loved it! It’s fun for me because I get to use all my stickers, washi tape, and 45 different kinds of pens. It’s a nice creative outlet that didn’t really require all that much skill.
Measuring this out, even with the help from dot grid pages, took FOREVER. I mean I’m terrible at measuring, but still. I spent hours on this.
I don’t even know why this one took so long, but it definitely did. Side note: I’m sorry for the awful focus. Hoping to get a better camera asap!
Sometimes that ends up taking away from the point of a bullet journal, though, which is productivity. So recently, I’ve been trying to scale back a bit and make some simpler spreads. I just want something that’s nice to look at but doesn’t leave me spending more time decorating than planning. I loved my really intense pages, but it’s nice to no longer have the pressure of creating something amazing every week or the pressure of accidentally wrecking it!
If you’re just starting out, or would just like some new ideas, here are some quick and simple spreads I’ve been loving recently.
*Quick side note: I currently use a Scribbles That Matter dotted journal. It’s a really great notebook and none of my pens or markers bleed through, so I highly recommend it!*
This was my June Spread! I opted for a small calendar because it was much faster for me to measure and make. I just listed any important events or reminders below as they came up. I used the same method for July, so I decided not to include it in this post. June was cuter anyway!
My new August Spread! I decided to use a larger calendar so I could write reminders on the day themselves. I also decided I wanted a two-page spread so I had room for my monthly playlist and memories all on the same page! For me, having those all together makes it easier for me to remember to use them. As you can see by the wobbly lines, I’ve basically stopped using rulers too.
Sometimes to save time, I condense a week to just one page. This is especially nice when you know you don’t have a lot going on and don’t want to waste a lot of space. I write small usually, so I almost never have a problem fitting all my tasks and notes on one page.
For weeks when I’d like a little more room for each day, this is basically my go to. My lettering skills aren’t that great yet, but I’m to the point now where it doesn’t take me too long either. This style of spread is nice because it leaves me a little more room for fun decorations! Quote stickers are great for this because they’re WAY faster than trying to be fancy yourself. I got the stickers you see here in a huge pack from Michaels and I’m obsessed.
Yep. I definitely goofed on there. I wrote the wrong dates, but luckily I had some correction tape. I only included this because the easiest way to save time is to stop worrying about making mistakes. This was really hard for me to get the hang of because I’m such a perfectionist, but honestly, it’s no big deal. Yeah, the correction tape is pretty obvious (in person, at least), and yeah, it made my marker smudge. But it’s just a weekly spread so I’ll move on from it soon and once I fill in all the information for each day, the tiny mistakes won’t even be noticeable. Just have fun with it!
I never know what I want to eat, so I made a quick little spread with ideas I’ve found online for days when I’m feeling lost. Super quick and simple, but definitely nice to have.
Clearly, I haven’t been using this spread much. Having no job makes it a little hard to save money month to month, but still, it’s a nice spread to have. This took essentially no time to make but could be super helpful to refer back to if you’re trying to be more careful with your money.
This is one of my favorites! I made this spread kind of recently, and I’m going to fill it with all the things I’m curious about. When there’s something I’d like to know more about, like Hellen Keller’s life as an adult, I’ll jot it down. Then whenever I’m bored and not sure what to do, I have a running list of things to look up and read about!
So, there you go! A little peek inside my bullet journal. I hope this helped you a little bit, or at least gave you some inspiration. I love playing around and finding new spreads, so feel free to share yours with me or recommend your favorite bujo Instagrams!