The Signifier Magnifier: Easily locate what's in your pages with a simple tagging system

In my March Bullet Journal set up article I shared a peek into a simple hack I came up with at the top corner of the pages to make it easier to find information that's in your pages. Today I'm going to walk you through how it works!

I grabbed one of the sheets from the back of my other Leuchtturm1917 notebooks and trimmed it down to form two smaller pieces. 

Next, I added a bit of washi tape so they would create little fold-outs. I added one to each cover so I could flip them out no matter which page I'm on.

I like to call these little cards Signifier Magnifiers because they illuminate the signifiers that are located within the pages to make it easier to scan what's inside the pages.

The idea is that it helps magnify certain things that you added to your pages because sometimes when you look at the page as a whole the information can get lost, but with this Signifier Magnifier you'll be easily able to find what you're looking for. 

Here you can see how the signifiers at the top corner of the pages are lined up to the Signifier Magnifiers.

I added these signifiers at the top corner of the pages as I added them next to the bullets. There's no real rhyme or reason to the order other than keeping to the rapid-logging nature of the Bullet Journal. (I may change up the order and take some out or add some more in my next Bullet Journal, who knows). I think you can click on the photo for a close-up of what signifiers are and what they mean. Here's a little more explanation on them:

  • Doc visit (health symbol):
    • This was the first event I added to my Bullet Journal so I added it first. I think it comes in handy to quickly browse through my Bullet Journal to see when these things occurred. 
  • Gratitude (heart): 
    • I love my Gratitude Log and seeing everything awesome that happened throughout the course of the month all in one place. It's been a long time since I tried out logging what I'm grateful for in my Dailies. The reason I wanted to try it out this time around was a desire to go fully back to basics and pare down updating all of the various logs and collections. Sometimes I have more than 2 or 3 things I want to write down that I'm grateful for and I think it's fun to have it as part of the dailies as true reflection of my day to day by writing things down as they happen. Because the monthly Gratitude Log helped me ingrain it as a habit, the past issue of forgetting to log it has now been resolved. Also, it feels good to be able to write things down as I think of them :) If you'd like to try daily gratitude logging but think you might forget, try out Ryder's awesome daily gratitude brackets :). 
  • Happy Mail (envelope):
    • I love writing and receiving letters. A few months ago I got a private mailbox and made it public so people can send me letters if they'd like to and I like keeping track of the letters I receive that I need to respond to. I had come up with a pen pal tracker back in January, but it didn't really work out for me, one of the columns needed to be more (<- / ->) to indicate whether I received or responded to a letter. Then I saw all sorts of pen pal trackers and Charlotte's was my favorite, but ultimately I decided that simple is best and what's more simple than an adorable signifier? :) The envelope means I need to respond to a letter and I fill the top part to indicate that I wrote back. 
  • Grocery shopped (shopping cart):
    • Just a cute way to keep track of when I last purchased groceries. It's handy to know how long ago I bought the celery that's sitting in the veggie drawer.
  • Watched movie (movie symbol):
    • I like watching movies and logging them, what more is there to say? 
  • Waiting on/for (hourglass): 
    • As much as I love my Waiting On and Shipment Tracker, I found I didn't have that many things to wait on or for haha, so I decided to go back to one of my favorite signifiers of all time that Josh Medeski came up with. The little hourglass is perfect to fill the bottom of when you hear word back from whoever you're waiting on or a package arrived that you were waiting for.
  • Did laundry (washer and bubbles): 
    • Am I the only one who doesn't like doing laundry? I think it'll be fun if nothing else to draw these little washer and bubble signifiers to keep up with laundry duties. 
  • Future event (arrow facing to the right): 
    • I fill it in when the event has occurred. This is an experiment right now, I'm trying out a simple future planning signifier. The way it works is that when I add a task that occurs tomorrow or in a few days I'll place an arrow signifier to the left of the bullet and add the date to the left of that. When I place this arrow at the top corner of the page I won't add the date next to it, it'll only be a way to see that I have a future event occurring which makes it easy to scan the page. Right now my life is pretty simple, so the future events usually occur the next day or a few days from now. I tend to flip through the previous days' daily logs each day to work on previous days' tasks. I guess if you're busier a different future planning system would work better for you. 
  • Important (exclamation mark):
    •  I typically use this signifier if I have a task or event that I've migrated forward a couple of times and really need to get done. It's easy to see when I'm scanning the top corners of the pages to help me focus. 
  • Idea (lightbulb):
    • I thought I'd try an easy way to keep track of ideas that occur to me. Having a dedicated collection to those hasn't been working out for me nor has a separate notebook so I'm going to try adding them to my daily logs. I'll fill them in once I've done the idea, this will just be an easy way to scan my pages for ideas when the time comes to it. Sometimes collections are ideal, sometimes you need to let go of wanting to compartmentalizing everything and just go with the flow and add them to your dailies :)
  • To buy (american currency symbol):
    •  This is simple and obvious. If I want to buy something, I'll add the signifier to the corner of the page to indicate that there's something on that page that I want to purchase. When I finally buy it, I'll add a little check mark next to it because it wouldn't make sense if I tried to fill it in.
  • Eczema cream (tub of cream):
    •  I have a bit of allergic eczema apparently, partly due from cat dander, the weather, soaps, and certain synthetic fibers such as acrylic and polyester. Sometimes I'll have a little rash breakout so I have to apply this intense prescription cream on, which works really well, but I don't want to apply it regularly because it's a really strong cream. I recently bought CeraVe from Costco and oh my goodness it is wonderful! It's making my skin so soft and healing up the dry patches so, so well. I had used Aquaphor before and though I liked it, CeraVe is working so much better for me, I highly recommend it if you have dry skin as well! Anywho, the signifier is to indicate when I used the stronger cream to make sure I don't use it too often, which I usually don't but it's good to stay aware of these things.

Here you can see the Signifier Magnifier in action. The signifiers at the corners of the page match up to the ones on the flip-out card.

The idea is to rapid-log bullets and signifiers as needed and then re-add the relevant signifiers to the corner of the page to make it easy to scan for pertinent information. Signifiers give further context to bullets so use and come up with ones that are meaningful to you. 

Here's the other side of the notebook with the Signifier Magnifier flip-out peeking out. Sometimes I won't write a note that I did something and will just add it to the corner of the page. This is most common with the laundry and grocery shopping because it acts as a little indication that I did it but didn't need to write it down as a note first, or at all.

I also don't place all the signifiers I use into the Signifier Magnifier because they don't really need to be magnified, such as what I ate. Here you can see it as a mug, but I don't really need it magnified. 

I'm pretty flexible about it. I left a little room underneath in case I want to add some more signifiers later on. 

There you have it! I hope you found this Signifier Magnifier flip-out card idea helpful :)

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