If you haven’t gotten anywhere with budgeting, you might have better luck with a bullet journal budget instead.
A bullet journal budget makes you more productive. It helps you remember to pay bills on time, track goals, and stay motivated — all from within a single notebook. It forces you to think about tasks you need to accomplish to meet your goals, and re-evaluate those tasks daily.
No technological skills are required to use one; the journal can grow and change with your lifestyle; and best of all, it takes very little time to set up and maintain. You need only a pen, a notebook, and a little knowledge to get started.
Buy It or Make One
You can purchase a bullet journal for about $25 and it will have the major sections already labeled. Or, if you want to save about $20 you could customize a standard notebook accordingly.
Whether you create your own or buy a shrinkwrapped bullet journal, it consists of a monthly log and daily logs. You might populate both sections on a daily basis, but the monthly log is more of a to-do list whereas the daily log is where you track what you’ve completed.
In both the monthly and daily logs, you might jot down financial tasks, events, and notes like:
- Income, including the source and amount;
- Bill descriptions and amounts;
- Transfers of funds into savings; and
- Planned shopping (groceries, clothes, etc) and the budgeted amounts.
From the Monthly Log to the Daily Log
At the start of each day (or the night before), you create a new daily log in the pages following the monthly log.
Transfer any monthly log items targeted for that day, such as a due bill, to the daily log. Add additional financial activities, events and notes for that day. Completed tasks are designated with an “X” to the left of the entry.
The daily log takes only a few minutes to create. However, it ensures you analyze each day’s target tasks for financial success and progress towards goals.
Additions to the Bullet Journal Budget
These steps help set up a basic bullet journal budget that organizes your finances and reminds you to pay your bills on time. However, once the basics are mastered, the journal can be enhanced and personalized. Here are some examples:
- An expense log could track all expenditures during the month.
- A savings goal or debt reduction page could give you visual affirmation of your progress.
- Inspirational quotes could provide motivation.
- Color and pictures make the journal fun and interesting.
For more ideas on how to customize a bullet budget journal, try a Google search on the topic, and you’ll find scores of examples on Pinterest and YouTube.
To learn more about the original bullet journal, check out the official webpage.
Readers, have you tried using a bullet budget journal yet? Please share your experiences and opinions of it in the comments section beneath this post.
If you liked this article, you just might love these other stories about budgeting:
- How to Build a Comprehensive Budget That Gives You Control of Your Finances
- Budgeting to Save Money
- Financial Management on a Weekly Budget
- Household Budget Categories – What You Need To Know
- Monthly Budget for Singles: Where You Can Cut
- Rewarding Yourself Without Breaking Your Budget
- 10 Daily Purchases That Hurt Your Budget as Much as Morning Coffee
- Preliminary Basic Budget Minimum Wage Challenge
- The Top Ten Things that Ruin Budgets
- Even the Wealthy Need A Budget
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