Bullet Journaling and the Music Therapist

I am starting a new routine. A new bullet journal. A new way to organize my tasks.

Now, I am someone who likes lists. If you have read this blog for a while, you know that I often have to-do lists and not-to-do lists. I make lists when I need to concentrate and when I have lots to do. I love my lists.

Now, I also love the idea of a bullet journal. I look at all the pretty layouts and creative ways to display different things, and I just fantasize about being someone who could spend the time to draw cute banners and make gorgeous calendar headings. I am not that person. I just don't have the time!

So, most of my journeys into the world of bullet journaling have resulted in glorified to-do lists. I a modified bullet journal set-up for session strategizing and long-term planning. I use my student planner for organizing my thoughts, but I also use pencil and don't do the fancy coloring and pretty things that I want to do. 

I'm going to change all that.

I returned from my most recent conference with renewed energy and personal goals. I decided to organize and structure my after school time significantly more than I have in the past. How to do this? Well, a new bullet journal, of course!!

I decided to make this bullet journal a more traditional bullet journal. I have an index and a legend for my posts. I do deviate from the traditional bullet journal recommendation in that I put my index in the back of the book rather than in the front. I like using the back so I can add to the index without having to put another page somewhere else in the book. So, my indices go in the back rather than on the front page.

musictherapyworks.comI have a legend in the front of the book. I was able to use my fancy pens and come up with a color coding system to indicate what needs to be done. If you look at the first entry (which is for this evening), you will see that I have four tasks that I want to do. The tasks are conveniently color coded based on their end use and function. Once I get the tasks done, I get to fill in the boxes - or use my little codes to move the tasks elsewhere. 

musictherapyworks.comFor this bullet journal, I chose my current favorite blank book - an R2D2 book. My family gave it to me about two years ago, and I saved it for a special purpose. I didn't really know what its purpose would be, but now I know. To prepare the book, I numbered the pages (there are 240 pages in this book). I then used some lettering to make things a bit fancy. I'll be putting a schedule and calendar in the book this evening. I may also make some brainstorming pages and fancy headings and banners!

So, why do I bullet journal? Like I said earlier, I am a list person. I have lists for what I need to do during the next week. I have lists for what I need my new intern to get done on her first day. I have lists for what I need to do for my new intern on her first day. I have lists for shopping, for cleaning, for different job responsibilities, and all that. Bullet journals are a fancy name for lists, and I like that! Now, when I mention that I engage in bullet journaling, people think that I'm all sophisticated and cool. If I state that I make lists, people don't really seem to be as impressed - I admit it, I like to be considered cool!!

For my session strategizing, I've found that I enjoy having a couple of pages for thinking through therapeutic music experiences (TMEs) for my clients. I have been using my strategy plans for almost nine months now, and I am making some changes to how I use my pages. I've looked back to see if I've made good use of my paper space. I can use my page space a bit more efficiently, so I'm trying to re-do my format a bit. 

~Just had a brainstorm that I will need space for intern information/concerns! I am so happy to be going back into supervision!!~

Like I said earlier, I use pencil in my session strategy book. I have found that pencil works best for me as I am brainstorming and arranging different session ideas. That doesn't really help me deal with my need to make things all colorful and all, but it is more efficient than using several pages to strategize one session. I also like being able to see everything that happened during the week on one page.

musictherapyworks.comI am looking forward to starting this new bullet journal routine. I will be taking some time to make this a habit, six evenings a week (the seventh evening is my late night job evening). There will be something creative to do, something website-related, something to clean, and then planning for the next day as part of the tasks that I will try to complete. Yesterday's task was to organize the bullet journal and then set the intention for this evening. I will be doing some dishes, reviewing my status on my Composition and Creativity CMTE course, uploading some modules to my website, and scheduling a webinar for some topic in the near future.

Once my tasks are done, I'll figure out what I'll do tomorrow evening. Thanks for reading about this new journey that I'm embarking upon.


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