Today I'm excited to share with you my Blog & Business Bullet Journal for 2016!
I created one of these for 2015 and I found it so helpful and inspiring to see my progress throughout the year. This time around I added A LOT more layouts and ideas in order to track and log the things that matter to me for my blog and upcoming business (which I'm super excited to share very very soon finally!).
Let's dive right on in!
It's no secret that the orange Leuchtturm1917 is my absolute favorite color Leuchtturm1917 and what better way to always use one for the following year than by making it my blog & biz bujo!?
I added a fun little label that comes with Leuchtturm1917 notebooks to make it a bit more fun, as if it needs it! There's so much fun in the following pages, let's dive in!
Here's a peek at the Index.
I filled this up about halfway. If you know me at all, you know that I like to set up a Bullet Journal so I that I can dive right on in and not have to worry about it later. Life gets busy and layouts take time, so plan accordingly!
Year at a glance
I ripped out the first couple of pages because I started laying it out way too soon. I like to wait until the second half of the last week of the month/year to prepare a new Bullet Journal so that I can give my mind enough time for ideas to simmer, but I kind of jumped the gun this time. Ah well, I tore them out and reinforced a couple of pages with tape. I normally wouldn't tear out pages, I'd usually leave them as learning experience, but this was the first two pages of a notebook I'm going to use all year long! I want it to be as beautiful as can be!
Anywho, this is the year at a glance that I am very much smitten with!
Oh my goodness, I am IN LOVE with the color theme I used for this year's blog & biz bujo!!! It's spectacular if you ask me, of course I'm biased. I love how the blue and orange contrast so wonderfully.
This is last year's year at a glance:
I tried out Monday start last year and it left me confused for the first 9 months. I grew up with Sunday start and even though, logically Monday start makes more sense to have the weekend all grouped up together at the end, visually it confuses me - so back to Sunday start I happily go :)
Writing & Working logs
Okay, so the first spread immediately after the year at a glance is comprised of two year-long trackers to track writing for the blog and working for the biz.
Here's 2015's writing log:
I gave myself a lot of grief for not writing more, but now looking at this, I'm pretty dang proud of how many days I wrote! I have so many drafts of articles I'm eager to get out this year! Isn't it so awesome to see this visually? Ah, I LOVE it!
The blog plot. Can you tell I LOOOOVE year-view calendars? Year views are awesome because of all of the different ways you can lay them out. Anywho, what is a blog plot? Well, I'll tell ya: a blog plot is a way to record your blog posts in a way that lays out the months by week in a continuous way (the way weeks actually are).
A neat thing about this view is that you can add a little colorful dot to see your posts by category, in case you color-code your blog categories in your blog editorial calendar (like I do!). If you don't color-code your categories/topics, you can still use by only adding a dot or checkmark. If you look closely, at the bottom you'll see a color-code key of my blog posts. When I write a post I'll make a little dot on the day so that I can see my posting habits over time. This helps me to see which posts I'm doing more of and how I can balance them out.
Here's part of 2015's blog plot:
Next up is my Stats tracker. I updated this at the end of every month last year and I found it pretty awesome to see my growth in numbers. I was reluctant about tracking numbers at first, but then I decided to go for it and I'm glad I did. It is a great way to see how I progress each month and year. This time around I added a few more columns. Urgh, I forgot to add a column for Flickr, I will have to add a spot at the end.
The section at the bottom is to measure how much I make through Amazon Associate's and Etsy, I'm quite excited about this! I finally started making some money from blogging from setting up Amazon a few months ago, thanks to all of you kind folks who make a purchase through my links! I highly appreciate it! It feels wonderful to be able to make money doing what I love, which is sharing ideas with all of you!
Next is a Passwords log. You probably shouldn't keep your passwords in a notebook for a lot of reasons, and I do keep most in an app. But, I find it easier to just flip to a page and jog my memory with a hint of the password that I add in here.
I have 2 spreads for the Passwords log, here's the next spread:
Mission Statement, Word of the Year, & Mindmaps
Next up is my Mission statement for the year to encapsulate a meaningful statement about myself as a person, blogger, and small business owner. I believe this will help be my driving force every day.
Beneath that is my word of the year. I smile thinking of the word embrace. It seems absolutely perfect for how I feel this year is going to be. I'm embracing a huge step in my life by becoming an entrepreneur with my Etsy shop and that's a huge and scary step for me. I've done a lot in 2015 to get out of my comfort zone and I feel confident about all of the awesomeness to come this year. :)
I didn't actively look for a word last year, but the one that kept coming to mind was 'simplify.' I think simplify fit well for what I was trying to achieve in my life last year. This year, I want to Embrace everything life has to offer! I'm excited about everything that's to come!
On the right is a little mind-map that narrows down my blog focus topics and underneath that I'll add a little mind-map for my business.
Next up is this spread that I will use as a time log. I'll keep track of time with my phone with the Jiffy app (I'll buy NFC tags so that it'll be quicker to log) and at the end of the day/week I'll update this log to see how much time I actually spent writing and working, respectively. They're both work, but fun work and I love that! I'll write it out like this "6H//6H" with the first number being writing and the second being working on the biz. Ahh! I'm so excited. I think this will play a huge role in keeping me accountable and working steadily towards my goals. It will be awesome to see how many hours I worked in a year.
Posting Plan, Blog Categories, Blog Labels, & Etsy Keywords
Next we have my posting plan, blog categories, blog labels, and Etsy keywords.
For this I'll write how many times per month on average I'd like to post as well as which days of the week I'd like to publish articles.
this will be based on the mind-map above and I may add more over time
these are on the sidebar of my blog. I think it'll be neat to see them all here
this will be a list of keywords I use for the various products I'll be offering.
Blog Month Prep, Blog Weekly Prep, & Blog Features
This is a pretty page to flip to at the end of the week and month to wrap them up and prepare for the following ones. The blog features were meant to be on the previous page, but I kind of jumped the gun on that and added them here, ah well, mistakes happen. I ran out of the Diamine Misty Blue ink sample from GouletPens, so I switched over to a Pilot blue cartridge halfway through. It's the closest color I had at the time...I wish I had used the Waterman Inspired Blue that I used in my everyday Bullet Journal - that color is incredible! Alas, I inked up my Pilot Vanishing Point with the Pilot cartridge and then when I was done setting this beauty up, I wanted a different blue and that's when I tried out the Waterman Inspired Blue. Oh well, I still like both blues. I kept adding to the notebook here and there, so you'll see this brighter Pilot ink around. I also have reminders in TickTick to remind me to update these on a regular basis. I'm not sure what I'll add on the opposite page yet. Maybe a tracker for the month and weeks to indicate that I did these? Ooh...that's a good idea. I do like to check things off.
Next is my yearly goals page. I want to focus more by doing less. It sounds paradoxical considering I'm going to be doing more than ever before, but these will all be meaningful things to me. I added a few goals and then I will add page or notebook threading next to these items to indicate where I have broken them down further with notes and action steps. I have found time and again that collections are KEY in reaching specific aims, definitely, definitely get in the habit of breaking down things one at a time in their respective collections and work on them diligently so that you can get closer to your goals!
Quarterly Plan: Tasks & Accomplishments
Up next is my quarterly & accomplishments spread. You might remember this from November's set up. Oh my goodness, I love this spread so much! It helped me out a ton by having a place to toss my tasks for the quarter.
Here's that spread filled out:
I will write a more detailed post detailing how to crush your goals with a quarterly plan.
I have 3 spreads just like this right after for the other year quarter wedges. Now you know the meaning of one of my tabs in my previous Bullet Journal!
Next is a contacts spread. This is to keep track of companies, collaborators, and pen pals.
I have another spread just like this immediately afterwards.
Next is a couple of fun collections to keep track of fonts I have bought and fonts I use for my graphics using Canva. It's a good idea to keep your graphics streamlined so that others will always know your posts when they see them. That said, I like to switch mine up, but I'm working on streamlining them a bit more.
This is a giveaways spread to give back to my lovely readers.
Bills & Wishlist
On the left is a Bills page to keep track of, well, bills due for my blog and business. I keep track of all of my finances on YNAB, but I think it'll also be helpful to see them on a page.
On the right is my wishlist of relevant items for blog & biz. I really want a more comfortable office chair and a new computer. My computer stop working about a year ago and the one I have now doesn't have quite as much RAM for my power-user self, sure I could buy more RAM...but I'd rather get a new computer with the specs I need.
It's time to update my gear. I love my DSLR, my sweet Nikon D40 was the first big purchase I made as an adult years ago and it's near and dear to my heart. It's awesome, especially with the fantastic 50mm lens I have to take these lovely shots you see here. I'd just like a DSLR that has video capabilities to shoot some videos, and sure, maybe then I'll consider making YouTube videos. But my computer can't handle editing video aaand I'd love to be able to shoot video with that amazing depth of field, you know, when certain parts are focused in on and the background is kind of blurry? Ah, big dreams and goals, I tell ya!
For fun, I'd love to someday get a Leica. Those are gorgeous amazing cameras with a ton of power in a small body. Sigh, just look at how gorgeous it is. At that price tag, I'd be afraid to take it anywhere, though.
Anyways, the biggest priorities are the chair and computer, I LOVE my amazing little camera, it's a workhorse.
Expenses & Income
Here we have two pages set up and ready to go to track my expenses and income related to the blog & biz. It doesn't go all the way across the spread, each page is a tracker of its own. Felt I needed to clarify that to clear up any confusion.
I have 3 spreads afterwards dedicated to the same thing. I like to keep things close together if I can. If it turns out that I run out after these 4 spreads, no worries, I'll index & page thread and everything will be gravy. But I do find allocating is helpful for specific things, not all things.
Again, I use YNAB for all things related to my finances in terms of tracking and budgeting, and that is why I have a YNAB column, to indicate that the expense/income was added to YNAB. I think it'll be fun to see here as well.
Shop Goals & Shop Stats
Next I have shop goals and shop stats. I find that creating a number goal in your mind and cementing it on paper helps to set it in motion in your subconscious and that will bring forth the effort needed to reach those aims, and that's exactly what the left page is all about. This spread will be reviewed on a monthly basis.
Sunshine & Berries
Next is a fun index for Sunshine & Berries, an awesome group I'm in. The quote on the right is our group motto. I use notebook threading here to keep track of where the notes for each week are located. If I added them to this notebook, it would fill up quite quickly and I'd like it to last me the whole year so I keep related notes in my everyday Bullet Journal.
Next you'll start to recognize more of a true Bullet Journal. Here we have the future log.
This is to get a quick and easy overview of what's going on each month and how I should prepare accordingly with articles and shop sales. I like this format, it's worked for me ever since Ryder introduced it over on his site and there's no need to mess with the best of them. I've tried little calendars in here before, but I find them unnecessary and they take up room when I could just flip to the front to check out the year at a glance.
Ideas For Next Year
Ideas for next year. This will be to hold any ideas and big adventures I'd like to do in 2017.
Here is the month log with the left side to record any notable things that happened. On the bottom are my number goal of articles I want to publish in January. This has been the number one thing that has kept me motivated to post more frequently - I want to check all of these off!
On the right I will use as a place to write down articles I want to publish starting from the top and tasks for the blog & biz starting from the bottom. On the bottom of that page I have some goals to keep in view.
Here's a closer look. The dashes act as a divider for both sides, with the left being the goal and the right being the actual.
This is where I keep the first ribbon so I can check out my plans for the month and update the month log with any notable blog & biz occurrences.
After that I have a January review spread. On the left side I will reflect on these topics, the right side I will leave as a visual memory log.
I reserved space for the rest of the year's worth of month logs & reviews directly after this page but have not set them up because I'd like to set them up at the beginning of each month as a fresh start and to make any modifications as I see fit.
Favorite 2016 Moments
After all of those, I have a spread to log my absolute favorite moments of 2016. This will also be in a visual typographic way with sketches and anything else!
Next up are full month grids. I'm a visual person and I like to be able to see the month in a way that I've been used to all of my life. I set up all 12 months like this so I can jot down events as needed. This is where I keep track of appointments related to my blog & business and where I keep track of the #PlanWithMeChallenge. I also log the articles I wrote after the fact to see it in a nice big grid calendar :)
- Pink - social media
- Purple - blog related
- Green - family
- Red - personal appointments
- Black - blog posts underlined with the respective color as seen on the blog plot earlier.
These are 7 x 7 squares. I set it up making the Sunday, Monday, Tuesday first then the Saturday, Friday, and Thursday squares, leaving room in the middle for Wednesday.
This is different from the Favorite 2016 Moments because this is meant to be more of a log of awesome occurrences, maybe they'll become favorites. To be honest this feels like a weak spread, and I may not end up using it. If that happens, I'll re-purpose it as a quotes repository.
This is to log the articles I've written. I set aside 4 spreads for this, I'm aiming big this year!
This is 2015's, I had a different color-coding scheme to what I have now, so bear with me, but this is what it will look like more or less. It's an analog archive of the articles I've written all in one place :) I love adding to it and seeing how many I churn out each month.
Article Share Log
This is one of my favorite and most used ideas of all time! This is where I keep the second ribbon so I can update it every time after I publish an article. It helps me promote and share the article in the various places. It's a great way to keep track of where I've shared. I set aside 3 spreads for this, again, if I need more room I'll thread them.
Here's the collection in action in a previous Bullet Journal. You can see where I added post its to remind me to update the next iteration of this collection with the according columns. I really like it, it's neat and handy. Now you know the meaning of another tab in my previous Bullet Journal! I use the little arrow just like in phones to 'share' my article, see what I did there?
This is another very handy collection to keep track of updates I did related to the blog & business. So, if I get a new theme, add a new page, make a huge decision, implement a new strategy - anything goes! I add it all in here to make it easy for me to check on. This way if I wonder when I did this or that, I can just flip here instead of looking through all of my dailies in my everyday Bullet Journal.
I am not using dailies in this notebook. This notebook is only to keep track of things related to blog & business and to keep track of calendaring related to them. The dailies will be in my everyday Bullet Journal.
- Orange Leuchtturm1917.
- Months & Dates: Diamine Misty Blue.
- Light Blue: Light blue Le Pen.
- Gray: Faber-Castell Stone Grey.
- Pilot Vanishing Point Fountain Pen (Fine nib) filled with Pilot Blue.
- TWSBI Mini Fountain Pen (Fine nib) filled with Faber-Castell Stone Grey.
- Slicci gel pens as color-coded entries in the calendar.
I hope you enjoyed this look into how I've set up my Blog & Business Bullet Journal! I'm excited to tackle the year ahead with this by my side! Let me know what you think in the comments :)
I'm also going to offer most of these as printables, some freebies as well! So stay tuned for that post and an update on this post in case. :)
to see the photos in full-size.