academia, bullet journal, organization, things i learned

writing || hard truths on organization and productivity

Feeling behind? Stressed? Anxious? Overwhelmed? Too much going on at once? ⁠

See that long list of “ongoing projects”? Yeah. This was a heck of a week back in November 2020. I went back in to decorate it and was thinking about how I managed to get all that stuff done in one week.⁠

I remember using my bullet journal A LOT that week (as you can very well see). But at times where I’m on vacation, or on break from school, I virtually never open my bullet journal. Why is that?

My bullet journal is simply a SYSTEM that allows me to FOCUS.

It forces me out of INACTION when I’m feeling overwhelmed, and gives my mind a storage space so I can really be in the moment with whatever I’m working on.

Those pastel highlights were actually done that week, for me to compartmentalize the five different categories I had going on at the same time and keep all my different “hats” separate.⁠

If you’re overwhelmed, first take note of whether you need something. Sometimes the solution is to get some sleep, get active, breathe. But if you’re simply “stuck”, then the only solution is ACTION.⁠

The more ACTIONS you take, the more confidence you gain in yourself, and the more momentum you build. The easier it gets. A year from now you’ll surprise yourself with what you can do with just one little step after another.⁠

my top pieces of advice on getting organized

You don’t need the perfect conditions.

We’re humans. We make do with what we’ve got, and we ROCK at it. No dotted notebook? No problem. No fancy pen? No problem! Focus on how you’re going to improve your life/learning/productivity, not what it’ll look like.⁠

You probably need a time management system, and a task management system.

I use Google calendar for time management and my bullet journal for task management.⁠

Those tasks?

They can be divided into categories (by project), into timelines (long-term goals vs one-time project) and daily priorities (for what’s urgent today). Figure out a spot to keep track of each of these.⁠

Stop saying you “need” to do something or you “should” do something.

You have more power than you think. You can either change your circumstances, change your mindset, or both. Don’t feel like studying or working? Either remove yourself from that obligation or find a reason you WANT to do it – and use that to keep you going.⁠


Which one of these tips resonates with you the most? Comment below and share with someone who needs to hear this today!

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