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BuJo for Business, Part One

I’m a planner. I love blank paper. I love journals.

I just can’t stand planners.

They’re too fixed, or not fixed enough, and I usually abandon them a few months in. Until I found the Bullet Journal Method.

Are you a bullet journal (or bujo) fan? Beginner? Aficionado? Curious?

I happened across the system in early 2017. It’s an analog note & journaling system pioneered by Ryder Carroll. It’s a relatively simple methodology that seems incredibly intimidating when you go on Pinterest and see these artful, detailed, and elaborate “spreads.”

After way too much investment in markers, washi-tape, and books on doodling… I gave up on those “drool-worthy” spreads and slid into a system that works for me. Which is entirely the point of a bullet journal. My anxiety went down and my productivity went up.

My mental health can be directly correlated to how often I am inside my bullet journal brain dumping, note taking, tracking, and organizing. Not in it? Anxious. In it? Better. Much better.

I also really enjoy being able to flip through each journal and see where I was and what I was doing through the years. But it’s become problematic for me for the last few years because each journal holds everything. Every year.

Each bullet journal contains:

  • Diary
  • Schedule
  • Business goals
  • Moon rituals
  • Spells
  • Client notes
  • and more.

I started using a separate bujo just for business in late 2019, but it delved into pure note-taking rather quickly. My personal bujo is a mix of everything and dates based for 90% of it, so trying to find notes on clients, budgets, income, etc. is harder to find. 

When did I buy that plugin? 

What’s the license? 

What clients use it?

Yes, I have digital records of all of these things… but for as much technology as I utilize and work with every day, I love me some pen and paper. (Sorry, ClickUp.)

I’ll be breaking out my personal one into a Grimoire & Personal Journal as well, because… it’s time. But today, we’re talking business. As my business “notebook” is now completely full, and my personal bujo is nearing the same fate… it’s time to switch to a purely business dedicated bullet journal. 

This, of course, comes with the fear of the blank page, deciding on what to track, what not to track, and how to lay it allllll out. And make significant changes to differentiate between personal goals (like gathering up materials to homeschool my 5-year-old) and business goals (tracking savings for that glorious new iMac that is calling my name). The spreads could be (should be?) vastly different.

I have one printable that is a modified version of the quarterly planning that I do now. Still, I think I’ll take this opportunity to switch it up some. I won’t set up too much at once, and instead, allow it to evolve each quarter. This will enable me to remain flexible (the biggest reason I left planners behind) and still organized.

First things first, I need a list of everything I want to track.

  • Accounting
    • Invoice/Income Tracking
    • Receipt/Expense
    • Estimated vs. Actual Revenue
  • Product Sales
    • Sales tracking for each product I offer
  • Quarterly Planning & Goals
  • Weekly Planning & Goals
  • Daily To-Do (as needed; I try to work more weekly than daily just because… life lately.)
  • Client Maintenance Records & Notes
  • Client Projects & Notes
  • Wellspring Members (I keep index cards of everyone, but it’s time for dedicated space)
  • Roadmaps:
    • The Fiery Well
      • What technical things need to be done to the site
    • The Wellspring
      • What technical things need to be done to the membership
      • Workshop plans
  • The Framework
  • Revenue Generating Ideas / Actions
  • Plugins:
    • Renewal dates
    • License keys
  • Calendar:
    • Dates Due for Expenses
    • Dates for Office Hours
    • Dates for Group Calls, Workshops, and Webinars

How about you?

Next, I’ll draft up how I want each spread to maybe be laid out.

Stay tuned! And let me know in the comments below: what do you track in business and where do you track it?

Ultimately the system that works for you should be the system that works for you.

Patty Ryan Lee is the witch and web developer behind The Fiery Well, the only tech support space and business community for service-based witches.

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