The transition period from one year into the next is always one of my favorite times. This year, I was a little more pressed for time than I would have preferred, but I still made it a priority to take some time to myself for planning and to have some fun setting up the paper airplanes bullet journal theme I chose.
Paper Airplanes Bullet Journal Collections
My bullet journal typically have two major sections: the opening collection pages and the monthly pages. When I was first starting out with bullet journaling, I would sprinkle the collections throughout the monthly sections as I thought of them. But I quickly learned that it’s easier to find the pages I need (and remember to use them) if they’re all gathered in one spot.
For this journal’s collections, I went with a grayscale color scheme and added little paper airplanes throughout. I’ve wanted to try out a paper airplanes bullet journal theme for a while now, and I enjoyed finding a balance between keeping it simple and letting my imagination play around.
Welcome to a new year! I tend not to look back at my title page much, though I do like having it as a mental reminder that this is a fresh start, so I kept this one really simple.
It’s also a personal tradition of mine to include the Chinese zodiac animal in the title page of each journal. This one was a bit more challenging to incorporate with the paper airplanes bullet journal theme, but I did manage to squeeze in a tiny little tiger face on the wing of the paper plane.
Originally, I had something a bit more detailed in mind for this spread, but the more I simplified the lines, the more I liked giving it an airy, spacious feel. This is an important spread for an at-a-glance view of the entire six months this journal will encompass.
Quote Page: “Flowering” by LUCY
I like to include a full quote page at the beginning of each journal. Although for the past few journals that page has been combined with the title page, I decided to separate them this time and give the quote more space with a double page spread.
For this year’s quote, I went with lyrics from this song:
O wind, please bring me spring Like cherry blossoms fluttering. O time, please permeate into my spring, more, more, more. Like slipping on sunlight, we melt in softly. Like flowers with open arms, your dreams go on and on.
Words cannot express how much I love this song. The whimsical lyrics, the uplifting melody, the violin – this song is springtime, and hope, and it makes me feel like soaring. Which, given my paper airplanes bullet journal theme, felt more than appropriate.
Goals & Vision Board
As usual, I have a goals page on the left-hand side of this spread, with room for three main six-month goals that I will break down into smaller steps. As I set goals for each individual month, I’ll include some of those smaller steps.
Then, on the right-hand side, I will create my version of a vision board, where I write words and phrases that reflect the life I want to be living six months from now.
This Timelines page is part two of my goal-setting strategy, and it helps save my sanity when things inevitably don’t all go according to plan.
The substance of this page is two timelines, both of which cover the same six-month period:
- The top timeline is my ideal timeline. I use this one for planning. At the beginning of every six months, I’ll plot out when I want to achieve certain milestones related to my three main goals.
- The bottom timeline is my actual timeline. I use this one for record-keeping. As I achieve milestones — both planned and unplanned — I mark off the actual dates they happened.
It’s easy to become discouraged when I run into unexpected delays or things just don’t work out the way I want them to. But seeing that some things did happen, just a bit later than expected — and that I was able to achieve other unexpected things instead of my original plans — helps keep me from giving up entirely.
Serendipities & Mantras
These two pages aren’t exactly planning pages, but they’re some of my favorite pages to create and to return to when I need some encouragement.
The left-hand side is what I’m currently calling my “Serendipities” collection. In the past, though, I’ve labeled it things like treasures, unexpected finds, and discoveries. Essentially, this is a space to record little unexpected things (and some big things) that make me happy throughout the six-month period of each journal. These range from spontaneous daytrips to surprise gifts to fun little habits I didn’t intend to form, and everything in between.
The right-hand page is empty at the moment, but it will be my mantras page, where I will write down special quotes and song lyrics that hold a lot of meaning for me at this point in my life. I like to take my time with this page, which is why it’s usually the last to be finished, and sometimes I continue adding new quotes all the way through the end of that particular journal.
These pages are pretty self-explanatory. On the left, I keep track of savings. On the right, I keep track of all bills and subscriptions that go out of my account on a regular basis. So far, these layouts have proven to be the most useful in helping me visualize how much I’m spending and saving each month.
This final collection is always the simplest spread to set up, but among the most colorful and intricate by the end. I use it to keep track of the TV shows I’m watching, and I use unique symbols for each individual show to represent how many episodes I’ve completed.
January 2022 Spreads: Snowflakes
You might remember that in my last journal, I challenged myself not to use any concrete themes for my monthly sections. Instead, I focused on colors and patterns to differentiate the months.
But, with this journal, I’ve decided to remove restrictions and let myself choose any themes (or non-themes) I like. For January, I chose snowflakes.
January 2022 Monthly Calendar Spread
After sticking to grayscale for my collections, it was nice to branch out and add in an accent color for January, even if the color scheme is still very subdued and gray. And I think I say this every time I try a new color scheme, but this may be my favorite color combination yet.
January 2022 Habit Trackers
As usual, my sleep and mood trackers on the left-hand page are exactly the same format they have been for the past several bullet journals. Meanwhile, the habit trackers on the right-hand page are a bit different from last month.
The circle tracker is for my daily habits, while the calendar grid below it is a space for me to doodle a little icon or symbol that represents some highlight or defining moment of each day.
January 2022 Finance Trackers
Finally, I have my finance trackers for the month of January. Which, like much of my monthly layout, looks pretty much the same from month-to-month, since it continues to be the most useful layout for me at the moment.
Of course, these pages are just the skeletons of my six-month and monthly planning. The real work of evaluating my recent progress, setting goals, and digging in to work towards achieving those goals starts now.
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