Elli Maanpää

Animated Painter

BULLET JOURNAL // Daily Journaling - Elli Maanpää Blog - 2018

Daily Journaling

Daily journaling keeps me both sane (as sane as it’s healthy to be) and productive. Today I want to share two journaling habits that I find truly beneficial.


You’ve probably heard of bullet journaling (BUJO). It’s super trendy – and I totally understand why.

I’ve been bullet journaling couple of years now. What is bullet journaling? Shortly for those who haven’t heard about it.

Bullet journal is basically – in my opinion – a self-drawn pocket calendar. How much space you need for your monthly and weekly planning is up to you.

You can use any kind of notebook. I’ve noticed I like the most the A5 size notebooks with dotted lines. They make it easier to draw all kind of yearly, monthly, weekly charts. And the size needs to be big enough to fit all my endeavours in one place. But not too big that it gets heavy to carry along.

BULLET JOURNAL // Daily Journaling - Elli Maanpää Blog - 2018

BULLET JOURNAL // Daily Journaling – Elli Maanpää Blog – 2018

The secret sauce of bullet journaling is making lists. I mark my bullet lists with empty squares (tasks) and empty circles (meetings) which fill in after they’re completed. It feels so rewarding.

I do bullet journaling to ease my mind, since I have always several projects going on. I need to remember the deadlines and when there are no deadlines I need to come up with one myself. I’m always evaluating which ones are my priority in this month, this week or this day. That’s how I stay focused and get things done – even when it’s only myself counting on it.

BULLET JOURNAL // Daily Journaling - Elli Maanpää Blog - 2018

BULLET JOURNAL // Daily Journaling – Elli Maanpää Blog – 2018

I also write thank you -diary to the weekly pages of the journal. So I remember the things I’ve been blessed by. It’s especially important on the weeks when I feel low or stressed. It can make a big difference.

My bullet journal is NOT the hand drawn decorated beauty you’ve might see in Pinterest. My friend was puzzled by this and asked “but you’re an artist”. Yes, I am. I express my creativity elsewhere and keep my bujo just plain, ascetic and functional. It’s the needed time-accountant of my own life.

If you’re interested to start bullet journaling yourself here is a great site to get you started.



Great way to start the day. Morning journal serves a very different kind of need. It’s the book I grab first thing in the morning.

I doodle and write ideas or concerns I’ve had the last day or in my dreams. I don’t have any rules for the morning journaling. The sentences don’t need to be complete or the drawings pretty. It’s more like meditation. Time just for myself and for my own thoughts before I open the phone, computer or radio.

Sometimes I open the morning journal in the evening too to write thoughts I need out of my system for the moment. I still call it the morning journal since it’s more about the new beginnings than looking back.

If there comes a day that I would have no new ideas to work on I can take the mourning journal and browse through the pages. There are tons of first drafts of projects: art and movie ideas, I could start realizing.


If bullet journal would be the presentable business blazer the mourning journal would be the pyjamas.

Do you have daily journaling habits? Please comment in Instagram or facebook. See you next Tuesday with the How To Do a Tiling Pattern –video. Until then. Have a sunny week. Elli