Does Bullet Journaling soothe you? Does it give you a sense of accomplishment? Does it make you feel good about yourself? It does for me, and that’s because it is a form of art therapy.
When I first heard about Bullet Journaling, my sister-in-law posted something on Facebook about how she bought her journal and pens and was excited to join the trend that had been taking over her news feed. I had no idea what it was, and after doing a Google search, I obsessively browsed through images for hours. Everything was so beautiful and artistic. And intimidating! I didn’t think it was something I could do artistically or organizationally so I put bullet journals on the list of things that I liked, but didn’t think I could do.
I was is in a weird place when I rediscovered Bullet Journaling. I was in a funk, unmotivated, and just feeling generally down when I happened upon the Boho Berry site, and something changed. Kara is a well-know Bullet Journaler, and her site is both motivating and inspiring. And all of a sudden the idea of Bullet Journaling became attainable.
I started slow, with an exercise tracker:
And a weight loss tracker. The first version was a bit ridiculous, so I made a second version that was more reasonable:
And then I finally did my first weekly spread:
It was enough to get that Bullet Journal fire started under me. And after posting on Instagram, I started to really feel like a part of the Bullet Journal Community. I also made some really great connections with other Bullet Journalers and bloggers.
My weekly spreads started improving and I created more collections and lists.
As I got more into Bullet Journaling, I started feeling more organized and in control. And I started exploring art and lettering more, and that made me feel like my old creative self again. It helped lift a fog that I had been living in, and I realized it was acting as a form of art therapy.
According to the American Art Therapy Association:
Art Therapy is used to improve cognitive and sensory-motor functions, foster self-esteem and self-awareness, cultivate emotional resilience, promote insight, enhance social skills, reduce and resolve conflicts and distress, and advance societal and ecological change.
I know that bullet journaling has helped me with this immensely, and after reading the stories of other bullet journalers, it has done the same for them. If you look through lists of art therapy ideas, you will see them mirrored in modern bullet journals. Things like mood mandalas, using line art, and making art around quotes you like, are all things that you’ll see when look up #bulletjournal on Instagram.
I am excited for 2018 and starting a fresh new journal, with all the new things I’ve learned so far. My confidence has improved, I’ve been eating better, losing weight, and rekindled my love of art and creativity! Who knew a system, originally intended for organization, could have lead to so much improvement?!