8 Bullet Journal spreads to make you feel better

We all have them: days, weeks or months that don’t seem to go as planned. Our Bullet Journal has been ignored, our health is no longer a priority and our work is suffering.

While sometimes professional help is needed, other times we can pull ourselves out of it with a bit of effort, or keep ourselves positive as we ride through our feelings.

Nothing is going change without a bit of effort, but these Bullet Journal layouts should help keep you focused as you try and pick yourself up.

Here are some things to try in your Bullet Journal when you’re feeling crappy.

Spring Cleaning Bullet Journal Spread

1. A reset button for spring cleaning spread

If you’ve been feeling crappy for a week or more, it’s likely your home is not looking its best.

Don’t beat yourself up about it – it happens to the best of us. But, it could also make you feel better and more accomplished if your environment is clean and tidy. Think of it as a spring clean for your brain.

And there is nothing better than ticking off a to-do list – once you get the ball rolling it’s so much easier to continue.

Where to start…

Look around you and work room-by-room. Write your to-do lists in small chunks.

For example, you might have your bedroom as your first room. Then your tasks might include:

  • Sort clothes
  • Put clean clothes away
  • Make bed
  • Clear rubbish
  • Tidy desk
  • Tidy bedside
  • Put shoes away
  • Put bags away
  • Dust surfaces
  • Vacuum floor

The trick here is to break down all tasks into tiny, bitesize bits so you don’t feel overwhelmed and can start ticking things off almost straight away.

Put on your favourite music and get started – The physical movement will help release some endorphins, too. It’s a win-win!

Goal Spread for the Bullet Journal

2. A Bullet Journal spread for your (re-evaluated) goals

One of the first things people like to do in their Bullet Journal is a goals page. Maybe it’s just a list, or it could be a really intricate time-line.

But when you’re feeling crappy, it’s likely you haven’t followed through with those goals – it might be time to re-evaluate and start fresh.

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Where to start…

What is your overall goal? Make sure it’s specific and measurable.

Why do you want to achieve these goals? Really take some time to think about this one.

Most importantly, what are the habits you’ll make to achieve these goals?

For example, maybe you want to lose 10 lbs. Your first steps might be:

  • drink 2 bottles of water a day
  • go for a walk 5 days a week
  • eat vegetables at every meal

You may just leave it at that, you might plan out a whole month or year worth of goals.

Either way, writing these down, along with why you want to achieve them, makes this spread a great base to keep coming back to.

Bullet Journal Wellness Tracker Spread

3. Wellness tracker for your Bullet Journal

Habit trackers are great when you want to tick off those goal steps you’ve planned above, but have you thought about taking it one step further and using it to help diagnose how you feel?

If set up correctly, you can use wellness trackers as more useful habit trackers. For example, you might start seeing a trend where your energy levels increased the day after you started eating vegetables, and became worse again when you stopped.

This can be the best way to really achieve your goals and know for a fact what makes you feel better. Knowledge is power, after all.

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Where to start…

There are a few different ways you can do this. The first is to pick one variable or habit, say eating vegetables, and track your mood against that.

Or, you can get really intricate and track several variables against several wellness measurements.

My favourite method is tracking habits I think affect my wellness in a simple habit tracker. I also make a graph which measures the amount of things I ticked off and compare that with my mood and energy levels.

It’s amazing what you can discover about yourself.

4. Your Bullet Journal wish list

Goals and progress are a great thing to work towards by themselves, but when you’re not feeling flash, sometimes you need an extra boost to keep you on track.

However, when you are feeling crappy, it can be hard to think of anything you want.

Therefore, having a wish list you can reference for when you want a reward can be a great resource, especially when you’re likely to forget about something cool you’ve seen or thought of because it’s not a necessity.

Where to start…

This is a simple list – spend time making it pretty if you’re that way inclined.

You can make one master list, but I recommend breaking them up into how much they will cost. That way, it’s easy to see how big of a reward they are – you can think about your budget and quickly look down the corresponding list.

For example, a day all to yourself might be a free reward for a good week, but concert tickets might be one of your big rewards for a longer-term goal.

Think outside the square – it doesn’t all have to be fireworks and trips to Disneyland.

Think about what you can tap into your friends and family for. Do you know a photographer or tattoo artist? Ask if they might give you a mini photoshoot or new ink at cost price if you achieve a major milestone. If they’re your friends, they will try and find a way to support you.

Sales Tracker and Business Plan Bullet Journal Spread

5. Get started on project planning in your Bullet Journal

“The difference between a dream and a goal is a deadline.”

You might have been sitting on an idea you’ve been wanting to do for months, maybe years. But it’s only ever going to be an idea unless you do something about it. So take those first steps…

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Where to start…

Create a project spread – this might be very similar to your goals spread, or it could be an intricate spider diagram of your business plan.

Make sure you have your to-do lists (again, break them down into bitesized tasks), and think about deadlines or habits you can attach to them.

Have some way of tracking your progress – it might be filling up a sales bar or colouring in a donations bar.

That way, next time you have some time to work on your project, you can flick to your project spread and see the next thing that needs to be done.

South America Bullet Journal Travel Spread

6. Mandala / colouring in page / creative Bullet Journal spread

The internet is all about mindfulness nowadays. And while the jury is still out about whether colouring in can be therapeutic, experts agree that performing some kind of creative task is always going to be beneficial for the mind.

This is one of the reasons people love the Bullet Journal. It’s a creative outlet that gives you something useful – no more craft projects gathering dust on your shelf.

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Where to start…

You have a few options here, depending on what you want to do.

You can keep it simple and print out a picture you want to colour in and stick it in your Bullet Journal. (Justcolor.net has a great library of free downloadable colouring in pictures for adults.)

Or, you can draw your own mandala or repetitive pattern to colour in. This guide can get you started with mandalas, but you need some of your kid’s maths stationery, such as a compass or protractor.

Alternatively, you can just use your dots or squares as markers and just start colouring in shapes or blocks, or spend time prettying up your normal daily/weekly/monthly spreads.

If you’re not much of an artist, is a scrapbook page can be a great spread to work on. Get some of your favourite photos printed and dedicate a Bullet Journal page to happy memories.

The idea here is just to get creative.

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7. Gratitude list

This is probably self explanatory, but when we’re feeling down, focusing on what we like about our lives can be a positive experience.

It’s worth writing a gratitude list (or make a more creative spread, if that’s your jam).

Where to start…

Another simple list, which can look however you want it to look.

Not only will it help you right in the moment, but you can also reference back to it next time you’re feeling rough. And try to continue adding to it, or writing down something you’re grateful for everyday.

“While it can be hard to avoid self-pity entirely, mentally strong people choose to exchange self-pity for gratitude.”

If you think being consciously grateful is a little airy-fairy and requires too many cheesy feelings, here are 31 benefits of gratitude that might convince you to try it out anyway.

Bullet Journal To-Do list spread

8. Already achieved list

When you’re feeling useless, looking at your goals can be a daunting task. This is when it helps to remember what you’ve already achieved.

“Remember how far you’ve come, not just how far you have to go. You are not where you want to be, but you are also not where you used to be.”

Where to start…

Again, you could do a simple list, but I recommend breaking it up into 5-years, one-year and the last few months.

It can be as small as you made an extra $10 in tips this week, or as big as you quit smoking 3 years ago.

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Knowing what you have already achieved can be a great way to make you feel better about your apparent uselessness (it’s not true, by the way. Hopefully when you’ve done this spread, you’ll realise you have already proved you are powerful).

Use it to remind yourself that you are strong and have achieved harder/greater/bigger things already.

You have survived this far, you will pull through this, too.

Sometimes how we feel is out of our control. If you or someone you know is struggling, please seek professional help.

Still not sure if a Bullet Journal is for you? Read about the man who uses a Bullet Journal.

 8 Bujo Spreads to make you feel better