If you missed my first two posts about my bullet journal, check them out first, or dive right in here if you’d rather 🙂 Thanks for stopping by!
Alright, so….this is another page that I have in my BUJO. This is my monthly tracker. This was obviously just my first tracker page, and it gets a LOT better than this, I just wanted to show you the first one so you can know how I started, and why I eventually (not long after) changed the way it looked and now I love it a lot more!
The purpose of the monthly habit tracker is to basically know what you want to be doing, see what you are actually doing consistently, and see how the two line up with each other. It’s always a good thing to have goals, but a goal without a plan is just a wish, right? These are basically attainable goals, healthy habits are what I call them, with a way to track whether you are doing them or not. And, at the end of the month, you always have a chance to evaluate the previous month to see what you need to change for the next month (this is definitely a step I wouldn’t skip!) During this evaluation, you have the opportunity to see which habits you are not consistently accomplishing. And at the end of the month, you can either decide how you can better accomplish those habits/goals for the next month, or you can decide it’s not worth it and continue working on other habits/goals. It’s completely up to you! Another important piece of advice is this: DON’T GET DOWN ON YOURSELF!!! Remember…grace, not perfection! ❤ It’s easy to look at your habit tracker after a month and realize that you did horrible that month. Whether you weren’t consistent and diligent with filling it in (ummm…that’s been me a LOT, which is definitely something I’m going to keep working at to get better at, so this is actually useful for me!), or you aren’t diligent in some (or many) of the habits that you want to start/become better at…However, I think it’s important to look at this tracker with eyes of grace. Realize that you’re not going to fill in every single day. Or you’re not going to do as well as you would have hoped every single day. But that’s just an opportunity to do better tomorrow, right?!
I’ve also changed a few of the categories since then, but here’s my list (at the time I drew this first habit tracker):
- Wake by 9am
- Wake by 8:30am
- I had both of these on there because this was during school, so this is what worked in my schedule. And the idea was to just draw a box on the days when it applied (MWF for 9am, TR for 8:30am) so that I would just color in those boxes when I accomplished my goal, and the other days when it didn’t apply it wouldn’t matter. Make sense?
- Yoga (still haven’t gotten into this as much as I wanted to by now, but it’s important to me, so it’s still on my list!)
- Cardio/strength training
- Food Log (I still have this on my list, but I haven’t been doing this at all. I might keep it on to see if it helps me during school, but right now I don’t really feel like I need this…)
- No pop (I had the bad habit of drinking quite a bit of pop for the last year and a half, probably…and I decided I needed to change that, starting with a 30-day challenge, which I will go into later!)
- Fitness progress photo (This only applies for the first day of the month, because that is when I decided to take a photo of myself to track my weight loss/fitness progress…it can be whatever day you choose, just try to stick to the same day each month, if possible)
- Read bible/pray (not sure why I had this on one line, but for the first tracker, I did…)
- Gratitude log
- New Blog post
- Instagram photo challenge (I was doing #100happydays for a while, which I LOVED!)
- Photography bucket list (I have a long list of items I want to take photos of, so I wanted to track when I actually did some of that. I haven’t been doing that, though.)
- No spend
- Review budget
- Expenses recorded
- Pm meditation
- Plan for next week/next month (For next week planning, that should be each sunday, ideally…and next month, you could set aside a couple days at the end of the previous month to plan out the next month and draw the appropriate pages needed to save you time)
- Sleep by 12am
- Save for Thailand
As I said, my list has changed slightly over the past couple of months (and the look has changed a LOT), so I will get to that when I get to those pictures! 🙂
It isn’t set up this way here, but basically I have a few different categories that I wanted to be consistent in, or have better habits in. The first one is 1) Health. Simple. But necessary! Basically anything to do with health. Exercise routines. Hydration. Cutting out toxic food or drinks to your health. Sleeping earlier/better/etc. Whatever works for YOU in your schedule, and whatever aligns with your own personal goals! Put it down to track it! The second section is 2) Creative/spiritual. Okay, so it’s kind of two put together. But here I put things like reading my bible, praying, and gratitude log…as well as creative things I wanted to get better at doing, such as blogging and photo challenges. Put whatever spiritual habits & creative habits you are doing and want to track, or habits that you want to start, here. The third section is 3) Financial. Boring, yeah, but necessary. Tracking the days when you don’t spend is a great thing! It makes me feel proud of myself that I resisted buying something I didn’t need, or going out to eat, or buying coffee (when I didn’t need to, or didn’t have plans). And all of the things listed there align with my personal goals, although they keep changing slightly, as my goals change or I see what is realistic to me. I even included a specific saving goal that I have: Thailand. Again, put down whatever works for YOU and whatever will help you meet your goals (I will go more into goals later, too!). And don’t be hard on yourself if it takes you a while to even get consistent with coloring in the boxes each night (I would suggest doing it every night before going to sleep, because that is when you can best remember what you did that day!). It might take a while, and that’s okay. Give yourself the grace that you give so easily to others. And then slowly try to get consistent in important habits to you. And don’t start off with HUGE expectations for yourself to start ten new habits all at once, and be good at all of them immediately! Start off with two or three, and even then you might not be consistent as you wanted to be. That’s okay, just so you’re doing something and you’re trying! That’s all that matters.
WHY IT WORKS:
- I loved seeing all of the healthy habits that I wanted to get into all in one place! I had never done that before, and I especially liked when I was consistent at filling things in enough to get several pretty colors on the page.
- This page helped me see what is really important to me and, at the end of the month when it’s time to draw a new one, I had the opportunity to not only evaluable the design, but also the habits so that I could make sure what I was ‘tracking’ and trying to get more healthy at in my life was really working for me and pulling me up, instead of dragging me down.
WHY IT DOESN’T WORK:
- I didn’t like this design at all. It didn’t come off looking like I wanted it too, so I just had to use it until the next month when I could come up with something different (or find new inspiration for a different monthly tracker, which is what I did!)
- The design was messy.
- I wasn’t consistent in tracking my habits, which meant it wasn’t useful to me. (Yet).
Next page is my month-at-a-glance page! I believe this is the only page like this that I’ve done, but that’s mostly because currently, in the stage of life that I am in, I don’t need pages like this during the summer. I will probably pick the month-at-a-glance page back up once school starts again. I’m not sure if I’ll go with a design like this or try something different, but this seemed to work fairly well for me.
Basically the purpose of this page was to put all of the important dates in one place for the whole entire month! It was especially important for the month of April, because that is the month that literally everything is due, with finals coming up…so final projects, papers, etc.! At the top I put an observation of what I could do better for next time so that I wouldn’t forget it when it came time to draw another month-at-a-glance page.
This is a simple design, but simplicity isn’t necessarily a bad thing. Obviously all I did was put the day on the far left, next to the date. And for each date that had something important, I would write it there. Due dates were obviously some of the most important things for me to have there, but I also have birthdays are important people in my life, as well as a couple scheduled events coming up on campus. And that’s it!
WHY IT WORKS:
- It helped me to really see what I had due each day, so that I could better see how I should break up the work to get everything done on time.
- It allowed me to remind myself when birthdays of special people in my life, as well as important and fun events were, so that I would know without having to look it up somewhere else.
- I could cross off the projects as I finished them, which I did more at the beginning
WHY IT DOESN’T WORK:
- It got a little confusing, when there was more than one due date or important date on one day.
- It looks a tad sloppy, but maybe that’s just because I crossed things off, etc. I’m not sure how to fix that, as of yet.
- It’s not SUPER cute. It works, and it’s not bad…it’s just not super fun, or whatever.
My next page has become CRUCIAL for me! Up until now, I never had a good system for tracking what I was spending and all of that…I never had something that made sense to me, and was cute and fun and useful…all at the same time. This changed that, for me. Maybe in the future I will reevaluate this page and see if there is anything else that I need to add, but for now…this is it! It has a simple layout, but it still works for me! (I did add a date section in my next layout of this page, as I marked at the top to change for next time!)
The purpose for this page may seem obvious, but it’s simply to track my expenses. A big part of this for me, was color coding everything. I came up with different categories:
- Unnecessary/shouldn’t have/ unhealthy
- Fun outings
And that’s all of the sections that I’ve needed so far. So, the purpose of color coding everything is (besides making it look prettier), so that I could easily see where my money is going so that I can change things when necessary for next month. Again, it’s not about looking at how many ‘unnecessary’ items and judging myself and tearing myself down. It’s simply about looking at how I spent my money this month, so that I can be better for next month. I have been trying to cut down on my unnecessary spending, so that is a huge goal for me each month. Design and add whatever categories that works best for you!
WHY IT WORKS:
- It’s a cute system that made me actually WANT to record my expenses, for once!
- I can really see in what areas I did well in that month, and in what areas I really need to work on…because of the color code!
WHY IT DOESN’T WORK:
- As I said, I forgot a date section in this design…but I changed that for the next expenses spread.
This next page is what I have for saving for a specific goal of mine. I think it’s a cute way to see how much I’ve saved, and how much I still need to save (obviously I’m very far away at this point!).
It’s simple. Obviously, I just color in one of the boxes (or however many) when I put that money into the envelope!
This next page, I haven’t really used yet. Again, it doesn’t really apply to me much at this point in my life, at least during the summer. There are probably cuter ways of designing a grocery list in your BUJO, but I haven’t looked into that yet, because I haven’t even used this one yet! But this would get the job done and the good thing about having it here in my BUJO, is that I would always have this notebook with me, so it would be incredibly easy to jot down things I need as I think about them, so I don’t forget!
Any tips/tricks/inspiration that you have? What do you think of what I wrote/showed you? I have a whole lot more left to go, and I hope you’re as passionate about this as I am! 😉 Happy Thursday! ❤