Start Bullet Journaling for Your Mental Health

journal and pens

In August of 2016, I discovered a blog explaining what a bullet journal is. For someone who loves planning, to-do lists, doodling and excessive use of stationery, bullet journaling seemed like the ideal activity.  Unfortunately, a skewed work-life balance often limits time for crafty hobbies. I've had a few friends and family say "I love the idea of bullet journaling but I just don't have the time!" If you are one of those people, I am here to help.

Now a little bit about me: I suffer with a mental health disorder that prevents me from taking time to myself, when it is definitely something I should do! Especially since the global pandemic, I decided bullet journalling was a non-negotiable self-care task, where I dedicate 15-30 minutes to myself per day. Whether you’re looking to relax, or need to get organized, bullet journaling is the ideal outlet. It’s like an upgraded diary that includes both writing and drawing! 

A lot has progressed in the wonderful world of bullet journalling since my humble discovery in 2016. There are blogs, vlogs, YouTube channels, Pinterest boards, Instagram pages and Facebook groups all about how to start a bullet journal. You can also purchase pre-organized journals with different layouts. Whatever you are looking for in your journaling journey, there is definitely a place to provide the answers, or a stepping stone for more research! Check out this article for more info and resources for you to start your bullet journal.

I understand that a new creative task could feel overwhelming with the stresses of work and home life, and journaling may be the last thing you want to add to your list. Honestly, I’ve found that bullet journaling is the opposite of stressful. Taking 5 minutes to jot down a little summary of my day, or to color in a mandala that logs my daily tasks, makes me feel human again. However, the best part about bullet journaling is that THERE ARE NO RULES! There is no right or wrong way to journal.  At the end of the day the only person who has a say in how you create it, how you use it, and when you journal is, well...YOU.

And luckily, this activity doesn't need to break the bank. Here are some basic stationery items you may need: 

  • Pens
  • Pencils
  • Coloring pens/fineliners/markers
  • Highlighters
  • Washi tape
  • Pritt stick/glue dots
  • A blank/dotted/squared notebook: I highly recommend Leuchtturm1917 for their range of colors, types and sizes of notebooks
  • Range of black fineliners: I recommend the Faber-Castell Finepen 1511 as it doesn't bleed through paper
  • Anything you like!

I hope this has provided a little insight into the world of bullet journalling. And if you are interested in having a look at how I use mine, here is a link to my Instagram highlight reel focused on parts of my third bullet journal. 


Written by: Sophie Higgs

Instagram: @timeladysophz

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