How to Start a Bullet Journal: A Detailed Guide for Beginners

One thing, which has been enjoying an insane trend currently is undoubtedly the bullet journal. Starting a bullet journal is exciting! Even in this digital era, they haven’t lost their importance. People still prefer going the old school way, just like the primitive times. In this article, we will teach you how to start a bullet journal of your own. It is a comprehensive guide designed to keep beginners in the mind.

Jotting down your thoughts, one by one, and penning down all your emotions work as a remedy and relaxation after a long, tiring day. There’s something ridiculously fascinating about keeping and maintaining journals. The people who are addicted to doing so will understand what I am talking about.

starting a bullet journal

However, if you haven’t had your first taste of journaling and you’re thinking to start a bullet journal, then you’re just at the right place! We’re here to tell you everything about bullet journals and how to start a bullet journal.

Tips for Kick-starting Your Bullet Journal Journey

It’s always exciting starting something new. There are all kinds of curiosity, high spirits, and a positive attitude of starting something new. And with bullet journals, all these emotions will double up by 200 times, since it is a creative thing. If you’re a beginner and desire to starting a bullet journal on a remarkable note, go ahead and read this piece.

Beginners Guide for Starting A Bullet Journal

If you’re a beginner, and you do not have any clue regarding journaling by farthest, take a chill pill. I will get all your bases covered. You just have to be patient and stick to your goal of starting a bullet journal. Beginners can follow the guide given below for starting a bullet journal of their own.

First things first, journaling is not easy. I do not wish to get your morale down, but what’s true’s true. The idea of spending just a few minutes behind certain things always sounds easy, but when you have to start applying it for real, we find many pit-holes along the way; and nothing different goes for bullet journal as well.

You will have to develop and maintain a habit. That’s why I mentioned earlier regarding sticking to your goal. However, I have some tips on how you can maintain a habit of journaling while starting a bullet journal. Check them out below.

Designate A Time for Writing A Bullet Journal

We know nothing can be decided beforehand and it’s a life where things flow naturally. But honestly, that attitude might just be an excuse. What you can truly do is to define a period for every day and stick to it like hornets sting! For instance, many people plan out their day the first thing they wake up in the morning. But it’s totally up to you, you can choose a night time before you go to sleep as well. Just ensure that you follow that time-period every day. This is very important, especially when you’re starting a bullet journal.

Set Reminders To Start Buller Journal

This helps you when you don’t know anything about how to start a bullet journal. When we’re starting something new, it’s utterly possible to get over-ambitious. But when the application time comes, people get lazier and distracted easily. To minimize your obstruction, you can set reminders for the specified period. This way, even when you forget, you can have a reminder to rely on.

Equipment Needed for Starting a Bullet Journal

Now since we’ve got the bases settled, let’s dive into the real things. You will be needing many things while starting a bullet journal.  I have made a list of the same below.


Now, this is as obvious as it can! You’ll obviously need a journal to start journaling. What will you do if you don’t have pages to write onto? Thus, get yourself a cool diary. A little tip from my end, buy a plain one. So if you decide on doodling, it can be easier for you. If you get a diary or a journal with all those lines, drawing on to them would be a hustle!


Since you’re a beginner and you don’t know much about starting a bullet journal, it is advised you get a stencil. There are literally so many designs available out there with a stencil, that you might even get confused about which one to buy. Choose your stencil option according to your preference and buy the appropriate one and what’s suited best for you.

Sharp Point Pens

You will absolutely need these fine pens while starting a bullet journal. To be able to create an outline for your bullet journal, these are your basic weapons. There are many kinds and types of pens available. For instance, Ballpoint pens, rollerball pens, and gel pens. They come in great varieties of colors as well. This is just going to be your one-time purchase and you will be set for a long time. Hence, get good quality pens from your nearest stationery.

Micron Pens

There will be many things that you wouldn’t know regarding how to start a bullet journal. And these pens are designed to work on finer quality papers. Thus, get a journal that has some good quality papers. Micron pens are used for technical drawings, as it gives sharpness in drawings for details. Many artists also use these incredible pens and if you want to have a finer outline for your drawings, you must get these.

how to start a bullet journal

Soft and Hard Brush Pens

Brush pens are used greatly by craft lovers. They allow one to create distinguished designs like dainty floral and many more. People who are into the invitation card business, also use these brush pens. They will be great when you’re starting a bullet journal. They can be proven good for adult coloring books as well. And in bullet journals, soft and hard pens can be useful for the detailing part.

Washi Tape

You might not have heard about this tape if you’re not too invested in art stuff. Well, it’s basically a masking tape that is flexible and available in various widths, textures, patterns, and colors. It’s non-sticky and is used for decor and craft purposes. They will be helpful to you when you don’t have a clue regarding how to start a bullet journal. Washi tapes can lift the whole look of your bullet journal and make it look as perfect as it can be. Thus, get those immediately.

Crayola Super Tips

These markers are washable. The tip of these markers is buttery smooth and greatly durable. Unique in a way, that they are not scratchy at all. They are used to color large areas. They are used typically for drawing, coloring, and writing. They will be the perfect addition to your bullet journal pieces of equipment. Get them today when you’re firm about starting a bullet journal!

Before Making Your Final Journal

A bullet journal is different than your regular diaries and to-do lists and even schedules. They are more creative and artistic. They can be minimal as well, but even the simplest BuJo would be 100X more attractive than regular diaries.

And thus, when you think of creating a one on your own, you have to start practicing it in a raw form. Meaning, if you have a certain kind of design at the back of your mind, draw it out on a normal paper (and not in your bullet journal).  It is basically practicing before you go for your final one. And in a way, we are actually habituated to this, aren’t we?

This is exactly what we do in our exams. We prepare for it, write down the difficult things that we cannot remember, so we don’t have a blank mind during exams. Obviously, this is a lot frank than the former, but you can still practice more on rough paper so that when you’re finally beginning a bullet journal, you have a considerable amount of practice beforehand and you do not have to waste the good quality papers.

Scrawl and Scribble

When you’re naive regarding how to start a bullet journal, just hold your pen/marker/brush on a base of paper and get going. Simply scribble your heart out on the paper. This tip works incredibly well for those people who do not have a particular theme or subject set in their minds. Let your hand naturally move and the inspiration will come up naturally, eventually.

In fact, many great artists have created their greatest paintings just by believing in the natural flow of their hands. Of course, you do not have to compete with them, but still; you can give yourself the much-needed start and get going.


You can do doodles when your attention is occupied somewhere else. This way, you can multi-task and the result would be a rather creative one while starting a bullet journal! In fact, doodles are created that way only. Doodles can be a great inspiration for your bullet journal mission.

They are simple, do not require any special talents, and can be created by anyone, anywhere and anytime. Literally, what can be any better? Doodles can work as an outline or a border for your final art.

BuJo Inspiration to Start a Bullet Journal

We live in a digital area. Everyone has the access to the internet and many of us are using different social media applications. However, the most famous platforms among today’s youngsters are Instagram and Pinterest. They are a hub for artistic people and home to the creative heads out there.

People create some unique piece(s) and upload them to these social media platforms to attain global outreach. Watch out for those when you don’t know how to start a bullet journal. Capitalize on those content and even use that as your inspiration when you sit out to create your own Bullet Journal.

You can get some of the greatest ideas from these sources. From minimalistic to artistic and aesthetic ones, just one tap and you can find the heaven of designs and doodles. Of course, this is for those who do not have any specific idea in their mind and beginning a bullet journal.

A little tip from my side, follow the accounts which have been specifically created for this purpose, follow them and innovate on the daily basis with your ideas as well.

After you’re done creating your bullet journal, and when you decide to fill it, don’t forget to leave the first few pages completely blank. You can add an index there, so if you create your multiple monthly BuJo, you can differentiate and reach directly to that page with the help of an index!

If you maintain a habit of journaling and decide to go down the BuJo road, you can upload your ideas and designs to your social media platforms as well. It will give you confidence while starting a bullet journal.

What is Your Purpose?

The purpose is the most important factor of anything and not only for bullet journal. It is your prime driving force; it is the reason what will keep you going. Basically, that is the light at the end of the tunnel. And everyone can have different purposes to attain in their respective lives, you have to focus on what yours.

For instance

  • Some people desire to track their mood through a habit tracker bullet journal. There is a set of all the moods and they mention them while creating their BuJo. It can be easily made and implemented. You just have to be dedicated toward your one chief goal of ticking out all your moods regularly and you’re absolutely good to go!
  • Many of us want to start exercising and avoid junk foods. So make your bullet journal according to that. Working in the direction of your physical health can be challenging, but you can make it a regular habit of yours if you follow your chart with discipline, and that’s exactly when a BuJo comes into the picture. You can make your chart creatively here and follow it with utmost commitment!

People have goals, and they want to work tirelessly toward them. Sometimes having what you figured out is not enough, the process of attaining that goal is rather a difficult one. It’s easier to get distracted on the way. We live in the 21st century, there are many distractions around us, that might deviate our focus from the bigger picture. but your BuJo will save you from that. Many people use them for their short term and long term goals.

A little tip from my side, whatever your main goal is, break it down to factors and make it a process. For better understanding, check out the below-mentioned example.

If your goal is to be able to write 5000 words a day, and your current capacity is 3000 words; then set milestones and due course of time. For instance-

  • Write 3500 words today.
  • Maintain 3500 words for two days.
  • Write 4000 words today.
  • Maintain 4000 words for two days.
  • Write 4500 words today.
  • Maintain 4500 words for two days.
  • Finally, write 5000 words.

You have to understand that everything is a process, and the leap of faith only works in movies, not in real life. Starting a bullet journal is only your first step. Give yourself some time and we’re sure you’ll achieve your overall goal.

After You Create Your First Bullet Journal

So, you are all set! From designing to scribbling, you’ve got everything covered and you’re completely ready to start using your journal. However, there are still certain things that you need to keep in your mind. Check them out below.

  • Starting a bullet journal, you’ll be requiring a lot of patience, and thus just start writing, anything. The first step to start writing is to start writing! Break your toxic habit of not following your goals with a bullet journal habit.
  • Once you get the reminder for your BuJo, stop doing anything and everything and do what you’re supposed to do. In this case, it’s literally now or never!
  • Don’t be disappointed if you miss out on a day or two. Make up for the missed time (If you miss out) and follow your habit.
  • You’ll only feel weird for a day or two and then once you get a hang of it, you’ll feel incomplete from within if you don’t get your BuJo time.
  • Don’t show your personal bullet journal to anyone. Fill the diary when you’re alone or all by yourself.

Bullet Journal Spreads

Spreads are nothing but a combination of pages that showcase the same goals. The only goal of creating spreads is to keep everything in one place, together and unscattered. You can easily overview your purpose all at once. And just like everything else, you can make BuJo spreads as per your personal choice. However, if you’re confused check out the below-mentioned ideas.

  • Vertical spreads
  • Horizontal spreads
  • Circle spreads
  • One page spread

This was a BuJo tour from my end. Journaling is incredibly flexible. You can customize it, personalize it and play with it how you like. You’re the captain of the ship! So, go ahead and get started on your bullet journal right away! Hopefully, you liked our guide on how to start bullet journal. Feel free to share your thoughts with us.

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