How I Start & Plan my Bullet Journal + Useful Beginners Tips! ☆

How I Start & Plan my Bullet Journal + Useful Beginners Tips! ☆

Hi everyone, today I wanted to take you through
my entire planning process and show you how I actually start my setups! I’ve heard from many of you that bullet
journaling or even drawing is daunting and you have no idea where to start. I am hoping that I can offer you some insight
to help ease your worries and inspire you to be fearlessly creative to plan your own
journals! I haven’t created such an informative video
like this, especially before the final inking stage where everything is perfect, so let
me know your thoughts after you watch this video! Before I begin sketching out my ideas
for the month, I spend an insane amount of time trying to work myself into inspiration. And that usually involves writing ideas down
in another journal and a lot of researching on google images, instagram, and pinterest. And if I still feel uninspired or lost, then
I normally head to the gym and clear my mind so that my ideas can flow freely, you can
also do this by doing something you love, but make sure to come back to planning. One of the most important piece of advice
I can give you on finding inspiration is to let it flow, that’s always the beauty of it. It is normally unexpected, so don’t beat
yourself up if you can’t think of an idea right away, but be open to everything and
like I said before, just start, anywhere, start planning or start drawing anything. After I have a jumping off point, and I call
it a jumping off point because the idea could still change, I start to brainstorm in mysketchbook. This is the place where perfection does not
matter and drawing preliminary blobs with eyes are fully welcome. So here are some preliminary sketches of my
past setups and journal ideas I’ve done. When I feel a little more confident, I’ll
start to plan out my pages in a storyboard where I shrink down each page and the content
so that I can see them all in sequence. I normally flip through last month’s spread
and jot down that sequence first. Then I go ahead and jump into sketching out
my ideas for the cover page to start this month’s spread, using pinterest as my go
to source for animal photographs. I try to avoid jumping right in and looking
at other illustrations because I don’t want to copy or be greatly influenced by another
artist’s work. Especially to the point where there is a great
resemblance. If that happens I always feel so guilty and
unoriginal and I don’t like that. Now I make it a habit to come up with my own
layouts and ideas in order to continue growing my own style. So another tip when you don’t know what
draw, look up real photographs of things that you love. It can be a beautiful sunset or a bunny rabbit
and try using that as your jumping off point. And then, only after I have developed my own
ideas and if I really need help with layout, then I’ll look at illustrations for overall
positions and placement. The wreath around the bear, was a weak point
for me, I wasn’t sure what I wanted to do with it, so I looked up watercolor florals
to help jolt some ideas to complete the illustration. Once I like the cover idea, I quickly sketch
that into the storyboard and continue to plan out the rest of the spreads. Simply figuring out where things go and working
through a few different ideas. Moving on to the actual journal, I then start
to sketch in my ideas using a 2b pencil, referencing my storyboard for my layout and image ideas. If you guys also sketch out your ideas, make
sure to sketch lightly and use a 2b pencil if you can, the lead is perfect to draw lighter
and it also erases pretty well. Now for my mood for the month, which is determined
by my actual mood or hopes as I look forward to the month. And that is determined by what’s going on
or any upcoming goals I want to achieve. I picked emergence this month because I really
want to accomplish a lot within the next 31 days, even more so than I did the past few
months. And recently I’ve been in a state of slight
disappointment in myself and my abilities. I am making it a goal to conquer that thought,
change it, and continue moving forward. Those thoughts which create those feelings
are normal because we’re surrounded by amazingly talented and successful people and its human
nature to think, I can’t versus, seeing their success as proof that you can. And this where journaling saves me everytime
and that’s why I love it so much and want to share what I’ve learned with you. So as I go through these thoughts, I love
using the thesaurus to find the best word to convey the emotions I want to achieve. It’s plenty of going back and forth between
a few different words and then finally choosing one. And in this case, it’s the same exact word
that I started with. As I continue to sketch out my spreads, which
normally takes about 2 to 4 hours from beginning to storyboard to completely sketching out
my plans in the journal, because I am creating a actual story through mine, yours may take
less time if you’re creating a basic one, I want to answer one question that kept coming
up on instagram and on youtube and that is, how I overcome my fear of failure and of perfectionism? First of all, I want to say that there is
no right or wrong way to bullet journal. Journaling is a personal extension of your
thoughts and basically of you, So making sure that it works for you, is all that matters. When I posted my very first bullet journal
setup, In september of last year, I really thought that I was going to get hateful comments
about how different my journal was from the normal, but I received the most loving ones
instead. And after a few months, I realized that everybody’s
journal should be different, because we are different from each other, we’re all individuals
just sharing a simple love of organizing our own lives in a notebook. So just understanding that thought, I know
that my fear of failure and the need to be perfect back then, was coming from my own
expectations of the reactions of others. And that means that my feelings were out of
my control and I was placing that control in the what ifs. But I wanted that control back, because I
don’t want fear of anything to stop me from growing as a person. I want to reach my goals or at least get insanely
close. So just like riding a bike, or learning something
new for the first time, I knew that I just had to fail a few times and disappoint myself
in order to stop fearing that fear of the unknown, because then it won’t be unknown
anymore. This might sound funny, but I made time to
fail and to not be perfect in my work, just to doodle whatever came to mind and then I
continued to build from that. Basically, accept failure as part of the journey. And better yet, embrace it because it is how
you learn to be your best self. To add to that about perfectionism, is there
really a perfect in art? Because, my perfect can be different than
yours. And if by perfect you mean completely aligned
with what you visualize, then it’s a matter of expectations, which is also a part of the
fear of not meeting those expectations, which is again the fear of failure. So, my two biggest tips of overcoming these
thoughts is to understand them and know where they are coming from and then to start without
reserve and without expectations. Okay, so once I have my spreads all sketched
out, I need to sketch out my painting that goes along with the mood of the month in another
sketchbook that I use. I wanted the bear to break out of his shell
and open up to opportunities. I have him walking along a rocky path with
beautiful leaves that seem to defy nature and grow even on hard surface, following the
song of the bird, which represents Spring. After I ink and complete the illustration
then I’ll have it to reference for the final painting on camera. Next in line is to find quotes that work with
this set-up and that all starts with googling the mood of the month and the word “quotes”
behind it. I love two sites the best and that is good
reads and brainy quotes. If I can’t find a quote I like then I’ll
start searching the synonyms of the word, in this case growth or rising. I measure out the size I want and then create
them to fit in those sizes in photoshop. When I create my own quote, which I did for
this set-up, Its just a lot writing out a few quotes and then hopefully, coming up with
one that works, all based on the how I want to end the story or to sum it up. Now from this cardstock pack I bought at my
local craft store, I picked out my blush cardstock and then ripped them to sizes I need, not
worrying so much about perfection here, the imperfections adds character. Finally, It’s prop picking time. I don’t have too many things to choose from
so you’ll see some of the same items and florals, but I do have a few flower stems
from my wedding and diys that work with the feeling of the spread. I then, adjust the layout and make sure that
I have enough room to work in my journal on camera. And that’s normally it. But, this time around, I wanted to create
my illustration digitally and change things up for March, which is where I would love
to gain more experience, but I was not happy with the the direction of it. So the next morning I had the idea to add
more movement in the bear and the entire scene with the bird. I wanted the bear to embody the word emerging
in his action, and so the idea of him rising out of the water to connect with the chirping
bird, came to mind. Now, we’re ready to shoot. One final piece of advice about this whole
creative process of starting a setup and bullet journaling in general is that, it’s okay
to take time to plan before you’re ready to jump right into setting it up. I don’t really know anyone else’s planning
process, but this is what I have to do to come up with my layouts and I love it. Throughout each month, I can actually see
my work evolve and improve. And I sincerely wish that for all of you. I am so thankful for Audible for sponsoring
today’s video! They have an unmatched selection of audiobooks,
original audio shows, news, comedy, and so much more. You can listen while your driving, doing chores,
or even as you’re journaling. I personally love listening to empowering
content, especially while I create because it motivates me to keep making and to keep
moving forward. An amazing book that I am listening to right
now is called Big Magic by Elizabeth GIlbert. She believes that we all have hidden treasures
within us and explores why we might not have the courage to find and live this treasure. She touches upon all of my doubts and fears
and explains how we can handle fear, along side of creativity. It is one of my most highly recommended books
that is helping me to open my mind to new ideas and to help me live my best life. Audible is offering an exclusive 30 day free
trial, so all you need to do is go to or text ‘christinemylinh’ to 500-500 to
start listening to Big Magic or another book of your choice for free! I’ll also have this linked below for you! If you guys want to see any of my work in
progress or join me on my life’s adventures, come find me on Instagram! Thank you so much for watching and I hope you have a wonderful and meaningful day. I’ll see you next time, bye!

100 thoughts on “How I Start & Plan my Bullet Journal + Useful Beginners Tips! ☆

  1. What you said about perfectionism is so true and really inspiring for me, it's a matter of expectations and our own mindset. So happy I find out your channel, keep it up with the good work! ✨

  2. I start my bullet journal now, this video give me too many idea. Please make more video like that. XO! 💕💕💕

  3. You are a touch of spring in my world. Inspiration pulls at me with every piece you share and my day brightens each time I see a new video. ❤ I wish you many years of growth and prosperity. Thank you.

  4. What a great video!!! I always watch your videos to relax and to gain new ideas and simply feeling inspired.
    As you always try to give really good advises for life I wish you a wonderful life filled of joy and laughs!

  5. omg, you are so organized in terms of your bullet journal! I think for the month of April I'm going to try to plan out more of the month! Thanks for inspiring me xxx

  6. So delighted for you the audio book sponsor so deserving. your voice has so much warmth joy love and kindness perfect for doing your own audio to your book you must to a sneak intro to audio voicing all your stunning characters.Could u do a video on simple black eyes for specific emotions as the how to draw animals were stunning. Idrew them in both pencil and gold gel pen with black.I smudged the gold gel drawing and it gave more depth to them. While I was sketching I noticed how every slight change in the eye direction shape size point or rounded shape and eeyebrow made such a difference. thank you for that video stunningly gorgeous illustrations and titles and descriptions bunny taking a break to simply smell the roses. 😊😊☺

  7. Not sure if you remember me but we used to support each other when we had just started our channels and it is truly great to see how much your channel has grown ever since. It's been a long while since I've been here and sadly I don't post videos on here anymore but I'm glad that the amount of effort and work you have put into your channel has payed off. Your creativity is very inspiring. Astounding work Christine and keep at it! Take care friend! 🙂


  8. I started my bullet journal when I started my cancer journey. During my year off work I found it very focusing platform for my creative mind. Thank you for your inspiring channel.

  9. Your videos are always so calming. These tips are so great! and always inspire me to get back on my bullet journal despite all those fears. Thanks and keep making beautiful art!

  10. Just would love to thank you because with your style and beautiful tiny friends I rediscovered the joy to try and draw forgetting about how bad I am at but just trying to do everyday and improve it.

  11. This is helpful because I am starting to get back into bullet journaling and I really loved your inspiration video 🙂

  12. Christine, I don't know how to say that u r absolutely perfect and all ur art work is sooooooooooo BEAUTIFUL. I'm jzt simply addicted to everything u do. U draw so well. Speechless. P. S : this comment isn't only for this video.🤣😘😘😘😘😘😘😘

  13. This is so helpful and beautiful! The thing I’m worst at is planning and when I don’t plan, get ahead of myself and screw up, I get so discouraged sometimes. Thank you for the tips!

  14. Love that you showed us your process…it doesn't just happen out of thin air. You really work hard prepping and planning your magnificently beautiful layouts. Phew! Talent also takes work and also some critical thinking 😘

  15. Your journals are so beautiful. I especially love all of the little animals. I can't wait to start my own bullet journal.

  16. I loved this video! I really appreciate being able to see the process, and that these beautiful illustrations take time and a lot of work.

  17. Really helpful video! Like it to see what you do behind the final page. It surprised me how much you do before! 💖💖

  18. Hi Christine, I've watched a lot of bullet journaling videos, but you are by far the most inspiring! I can tell with your videos how beautiful you are inside and out! I really would like to add some artistic flair into my Bujo. I am stopping by often to get more inspiration. Thanks so much! Enjoy your Sunday! Hugs~ Josie 🙂

  19. I've been watching a lot of bullet journal beginner videos and though they share useful tips in planning, I love your planning process! I especially love how you use separate journals or sketchbooks to allow yourself to be inspired and draw freely to help you out. I'll definitely give this a try to help myself with my journaling journey 💓💓

  20. Watching your videos in general and this in particular make me learn so so much. I've learn that I love to bullet, love to draw(which I didn't do for a lot), learn that I just need to start and try even though I'm not good as you are, even if I lack of inspiration, I just can scroll on pinterest and from one image I can start building my idea and go on. I love everything you draw and all you say. I feel so luck that I found your channel. ❤️

  21. Thank you for sharing your experience with us! I always thought that all you did with your journal is so easy, that you just start and draw everything with a pencil straight away. I didn’t know you're planning it so carefully. And watching your videos I always felt so damn because I can't do it so easily. Now I can see the effort you put into it, and it reassures me 🙂

  22. You are such a huge inspiration! I just discovered your channel and I'm loving every bit of it! Your art and your thoughts are so beautiful. Thank you so much for helping me understand that my bullet journal is a representation on me and not of the things that will get the most likes. <3

  23. I love how you tie together all your spreads with a story. I look forward to seeing what journeys the bunny and bear take each month!

  24. I first found your channel through your march 2018 bullet journal setup, and i instantly fell in love with your drawing style!!:) Looking more at your videos, i get amazed on how you do the diys. Hope you'll keep doing more of them!

  25. i've always wanted to start a bullet journal but always felt overwhelmed, haha. maybe this'll help me start!

  26. You are so inspiring!!! 😍 i just came to this channel and find it soothing with ur voice too. I also did some sketching before doing my planning layout 😂 because im afraid to do wrong things

  27. I love how you emphasized that we are all different and so our journals will all be different. That gave me permission to not be intimidated by seeing amazing artists (you included) and not to compare myself and get discouraged. I also wanted to ask if there’s a specific brand of No. 2 pencils that you recommend? Thank you!! 💜💜💜

  28. Imho you shouldn't have doubts about whether you're good enough in what you do. I truly think you're an awesome and greatly talented artist 😘

  29. I seriously admire you ♥️
    You’re really honest in all of your videos so when you talk about insecurities and motivation, many times I can see my own problems and understand that kind of situation so you inspire me a lot! 🖤

    Also I’m always insecure about spending time planing and all that when everyone seems to just draw it and finished so I’m really thankful for this video💐
    Your bullet Journal is beautiful and really inspiring so please keep up your amazing spreads ♥️

  30. I am always amazed by your set ups and your out look on life. Your videos are encouraging, uplifting, and beautiful to watch. I see your bullet journal as both and art journal and a place to organize your life, in a way, 2 in one 😊

  31. Wow, I'm just new to the entire bullet journal idea, or at least to do it for myself. I have just started setting up and am also new with all the youtube videos. I just found your channel and I already love it. It is exactly what I am looking for in bullet journaling! Your videos are giving me so much inspiration, and I am so excited to start my own bullet journal!


  32. I'm planning to make my own bullet journal for 2019 ..usually how many page does a bullet jrnl. have?

  33. As someone who has an all function, no form bujo (I'm hopeless with art) I really enjoyed seeing your creative process. Actually, in general, watching your creative journey with your characters has been really unique and inspiring.

  34. Love this spread! Maybe next month you should bring the bunny and bird back-they can all experience friendship!

  35. Beautiful work! EG is one of my favorite authors and this book did not disappoint. Keep being your beautiful soul self!

  36. You were the very first person to give inspiration to start a bullet journal. I used to barely even know what it was, but now I follow your monthly setups and I use your great tips to create something of my own. My very first bullet journal came in the mail today and I followed this video and your April setup to create my very first pages. Thank you so much for being yourself because then I use your creativity to inspire me to create something extraordinary. Thanks again! ♡ Jenavieve

  37. Thank you for making these vids,these will definitely help my bullet journaling especially because I am a newbie.Because our country is a poor country,I AM PROUD TO SAY..THE PHILIPPINES,I will using some alternative supplies for BuJoing like cheap colored pens…it all works the same but until it makes you productive,and also I'll start bujoing this coming June.I am buying a sketch book instead of a journal that has doted pages,by watching this i found the solution on how to draw and qrite straitly on a sketchbook,I am going to draw a strait line on the space of the page I want to write or draw something on.THIS WILL HELP ME A LOT.This is so HELPFUL….THANKS :* 😀

  38. Your work is gorgeous and your spirit as well. Thank you. I love your table, so rustic, so real. What is it?

  39. This is all so clean and so peaceful… reaaallyy inspiring video, great job! You just got a new follower haha x)

  40. How many hours do you spend on searching for inspiration and the preparation phase before you go in with ink?

  41. Late but not last !! Hey , your videos are really satisfying and helpful for me !! Loads of love from Singapore ..

  42. this video was beautiful. I could listen to you speak for hours I think, I’ve never connected to anything anyone’s said in such a way that I’m connecting right now. Do you consider writing down these words or even a podcast?

  43. Thank you! I love your journal bc it tells a story! This makes it so unique! And your voice is calming! To watch your videos at the end of a stressed day brings me down – so thank you again! And also your drawings are so cute! Best wishes and greetings from Austria!

  44. I was back to watching your videos after a break for a while, and I went out and bought a sketch book, some 2B pencils, and a set of water colors. I'm really enjoying drawing out a storyboard of my month, and even though it's 7 days in and I haven't actually started my journal this month, I am really loving this process. Thanks for your lovely and inspiring videos. (Also, I love Big Magic.) Thank you. I really appreciate you.

  45. You are so incredibly talented, Christine!!! Never doubt yourself and your creativity!!!! I love your channel and your work!!!

  46. Such a thought provoking video! Thank you Christine for sharing your thoughts, your inspirations and your journey! Your voice is so soothing and enjoyable to listen to! I am relatively new to journaling and have no drawing talent. Right now I copy others and look forward to the day I come up with my own treasure!

  47. Wow just wow! I love this video the best journaling video I saw soo far! Yesh my dear u stand exactly corrected our journals should be different from one other because we are uniques! <3

  48. love seeing the creativity of different bullet journallers and seeing the simplicity of spreads that others choose

  49. This is such a great video, and will surely help me plan my spreads. I just discovered your channel, and I already love it. Your voice is beautiful, and you draw really well, did you take any art classes?

  50. I've been writing poetry and art through my journal for the past 3 years and next year I will FINALLY start my own bullet journal. It felt just right like all I've been doing is a preparation for this. I'm scared but also excited. Wish me luck!!!

  51. So happy to have found your channel. You are so inspiring and soothing to the soul. I could just watch you make art all day.

  52. Great tips, your work progress is so helpful as an idea, wonderful thoughts and lovely finished project! Thanks a lot aand all thumbs up!🎶👍🎨📌📝

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