Bullet Journal Daily Spread

Daily bullet journal spread

What is a bullet journal daily log

The daily log is one of the bullet journal’s four core collections (Index, Future Log, Monthly Log, and Daily Log). It is often referred to as the bullet journal daily spread yet in the Bullet Journal Method, Ryder Carroll calls it the daily log. The bullet journal community often refers to it as a daily or dailies (plural).

The daily log includes your tasks (to-do list), events (schedule) and notes (thoughts) in real-time. The idea is to quickly log everything that happens each day in your BuJo daily spread without stopping to think where each thing should go. At the end of the day, during your daily reflection, you can move anything that needs to be moved (see migration below) and schedule anything that needs to be scheduled.

How to set up the bullet journal daily log

The daily bullet journal layout is very simple and easy to set up.

  1. Add the day’s date.
  2. Add the page number. Dailies are not indexed so don’t add the page number to the index.
  3. Rapid log your tasks, events, and notes as they occur throughout the day.

This is a sample bullet journal daily layout.

Rapid logging

Rapid logging is a short form notation paired with symbols to organize your thoughts into notes, events, and tasks. Keep your notes short but understandable. You want to be able to read them in the future and still understand what you meant.

The notes section helps you unburden your mind by offloading thoughts. The tasks section does this by offloading things to do.

Bullet Journal Symbols

The symbols used are as follows:

– Note

O Event

• Task

× Task Complete

› Task Migrated

‹ Task Scheduled

• Task Irrelevant

See the bullet journal key

How do we write a task?

Bullet journaling uses about half the words that conventional journaling uses. Don’t write anything that is not necessary.

Traditional Task

☐ Call Susan to ask the name of the dentist that she once recommended.

Bullet Journal Task

  • Susan: Call re: dentist

Once Complete

Traditional Task

☑ Call Susan to ask the name of the dentist that she once recommended.

Bullet Journal Task

× Susan: Call re: dentist

Can you use your daily as a journal?

The idea behind the bullet journal is to combine everything into one notebook and this includes your journal.

You can express yourself with notes as you would with a traditional journal.

If you want to record detailed notes about an event then nest note bullets under an event bullet.

For example:

O Emma’s birthday party

  – The cake was amazing.

  – The kids had such fun.

  – The clown was hysterical.

  – No parents stayed.

How much space should the daily spread take up?

Since you do not know how much space you will need for your daily log you do not set it up in advance. Instead, set up each daily log that morning or the night before. If the previous day did not take up an entire day, then you can just continue on the same page with a new title (the next date).

Daily Migration

Dedicate specific times for reflecting on the contents of your journal. Prioritize what matters and discard what doesn’t.

Each day you will need to move future events from the daily log to the future log.

Since they are moving back to the Future Log we will mark them as follows:

< Buy a cake for party

 

The task will be marked as migrated in the daily log and add to the future log in the relevant month. For example, if you want to buy the cake in August, add it to the August section in the future log. 

 

Scheduled tasks will be marked as follows.

> Invite clown to Jennie’s party.

Daily Reflection

Set aside time aside each day to check in with yourself. How did you feel today? What did you spend time on? What did you waste time on? Did the things you do make you feel good? If you feel that some things you spent time were meaningless then re-prioritize future tasks accordingly. Don’t waste time on projects if you realize halfway that they are not worth your time and energy.

During the daily reflection read over the notes you took throughout the day. 

Morning reflection

Before you start the day, take a few moments to get ready for the day. Offload your thoughts and review the pages of the current month to see if there are any open tasks. This will help you ensure that you prioritize projects that you have deemed important and that no tasks fall between the cracks.

Afternoon/evening reflection

Go over the tasks you did during the day. Make sure that everything you did really is a priority. Appreciate your progress.

Daily Gratitude

Make a simple list of things you are grateful for in your daily log. Keep writing whatever comes to mind and add items as they come to mind or after your daily reflection. Some people like to spend 5 minutes each morning doing this. Many people claim that it improves their outlook the entire day after spending this time devoted to gratitude. You can even schedule a short daily gratitude session in your daily log.

Migrate the items from your daily log to your gratitude spread.

Why use a daily bullet journal to plan your day?

Some people use a productivity app to track their to-do lists. I used to do this. I had hundreds of tasks in my to-do lists. They were prioritized and dated. I had reminders that popped up to remind me to get things done. During the time I used the productivity app I got the least done. My to-do list was never completed and I felt totally overwhelmed. Why is a productivity app so ineffective? Because it’s on your phone and your phone is FULL of distractions. Every time you check your to-list you are sucked into the thousands of distractions that your phone offers. It is so difficult to stay focused.

This is the beauty of the analog system.

Also, when you type you don’t give much thought to the content whereas handwriting forces your brain to mentally engage with the information.

Sample daily planner step by step

See the short video above that will take you through each step.

Bullet journal daily spread

This is the initial daily log as it first appeared in your bullet journal. Throughout the day you can mark items as complete or irrelevant. During the daily migration, you will migrate or schedule items as required (see explanation below).

Bullet journal daily layout

This is a sample set up for your daily log. You will notice that the next day starts right below the previous day with a new date.

Tasks, events, and notes are all marked with the relevant symbol.

When a task is completed it is marked accordingly. For example:

Before:

  • Susan: Call re: dentist

Once Complete

     × Susan: Call re: dentist

If a task becomes irrelevant then mark it as follows:

  • Order food for parents at Jennie’s party

During migration, you will move some tasks to the next month (hence the arrow pointing to the right).

> Invite clown to Jennie’s party.

Things that will need to be scheduled for the future will be moved back to the future log (hence the arrow pointing to the left).

< Buy a cake for party

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