Last year when I went on a 5-month hiatus from my blog because I was struggling with grief and depression, one of my best friends from my hometown recommended I Bullet Journal to help me deal with my emotions.
For those of you who don’t know what a Bullet Journal is, it’s a method of organization for a ton of different things such as daily to-do lists, mood tracking, gratitude lists, etc. There is an official journal you can buy, or you can use whatever journal you have, you can even create your own with scrap paper!
I personally used a random notebook for my BuJo, and I used it quite a bit for several months until I finally returned to my online blog. It never became the cutesie journals that you will find online if you search “Bullet Journal ideas” in Google Images because I just used different colored pencils and pens to create lists. Regardless, it helped me get through a difficult time, thus I am picking it up again! This time, I’m going to use it to help me keep track of my finances. (I’m also not using it in lieu of blogging.)
As I’ve mentioned previously, I have been a bit stressed out about money. Although I am making a small income, I somehow spend outrageously every month. The months leading up to graduation were particularly expensive due to many nights spent celebrating and…honestly I don’t know what else.
Anyway…I was inspired to pick up my BuJo again because in my email inbox recently, there was a message about Bullet Journaling and Finances. Intrigued, I clicked on it and read a helpful article about how someone used the Bullet Journal to get out of a $240K debt! Thankfully, I don’t have such a large task to tackle; I want to save more money, spend less, and budget.
After reading the article, I adopted two of the prompts that the writer of the article, Seth, used! Below is my version of what he had done.
The prompt above is to track my everyday purchases and my income. This will help me determine what I need to scale back on so I can save more money. Off the top of my head, I suspect that I spend a lot of money eating out and on alcohol. I also spend quite a bit doing spontaneous shopping on Amazon (books are my greatest weakness!!) and at the mall for yoga items (speaking of which, there will be another yoga haul soon!).
This second prompt I copied is a habit tracker for the month of June. All the days of June (except the 29th and 30th…I ran out of room) are included as well as the day of the week. The vertical column consists of habits that I want to break and make. For example, I want to read at least 20 pages of either one or of multiple books per day because I have a bunch of reading to do for the yoga training as well as a huge pile of half-read books I’m dying to finish. For some reason though, I always get caught up on YouTube or reading different lifestyle blogs, which is better than YouTube I suppose but I would prefer to finish a book.
Other habits I want to create that would help me achieve my long-term goals include researching PhD programs, applying to at least two jobs/day, meditating with my mala, writing, studying (for yoga/GRE), doing yoga, 10 minute cardio, save $20, clean/organize 5 items in my room, not spend money, and research a car to get. Some habits I would like to break include not buying coffee, not buying alcohol, and not buying food (unless it’s from a grocery store).
When I do a habit I want to create, I will put a smiley face on the date. When I don’t do a habit I want to create, or when I do a habit I want to break, I will put a frowny face.
I have many habits in the vertical column, so I don’t expect them to do them daily; however, I hope this tracker will encourage me to practice these habits more frequently than I have been. Currently, I’ve been avoiding many of these tasks and I expect this tracker will help hold me accountable. This will ultimately help me achieve my long-term goals!
At the end of June I will update y’all on my progress with this.
Do any of y’all Bullet Journal? What prompts do you like to use for finances or in general?
I got this dress online from Forever 21. Forever 21 was having a crazy sale and this dress reminded me of the seventies because of the sleeves and it felt like something that Free People would sell (I love Free People but it’s too expensive) so I got this dress.
Here’s the back…as you can see the material is like a thick, knitted fabric. I wore tattoo tights with this dress that had this creepy corset stitching down the whole leg.
Here’s a closer look at my sexy legs lol the shoes I’m wearing are from my mom’s closet. Like I’ve said before, I hate flats but you can only wear low-cut shoes with these tights so you can get the full effect of the tights. I’m looking at buying a low pair of Docs soon…the ones I’m interested in getting are really expensive though but I know they’d get good use so I may have to make an investment. We shall see…when I finally get nice low-cut shoes I’ll make a shoe collection post because I have a decent amount of shoes in my opinion. They make my tiny closet at school really full lol
This is my beautified face…oh and there you can see the Betsey Johnson necklace my sister got me for my birthday that I wore in my birthday lookbook.
So let’s talk about my makeup today! The palette that I used is by the brand Beauty Gems and it’s called “Change It Up.” I’ve had it for about two years now so that means that I’m ready to buy another one. I have my eyes set on the Urban Decay Vice 3 eyeshadow palette although it’s quite expensive for me but I think I’d like it more than the one I currently have so I’d probably use it more than I use the Beauty Gems one.
I dislike the Beauty Gems palette because the quality of the makeup is just mediocre, like it doesn’t go on that smoothly in my opinion. I got it for ten bucks though so I can’t be expecting too much haha Also, this particular palette has a lot of neutrals, which I never wear because I feel like the point of eyeshadow is to have obnoxious, awesome colors on your eyelids rather than painting on eyeshadow that matches your skintone…but maybe I feel this way because I’m young and I do whatever I want regarding fashion and makeup. I wore a smokey eye and bright red lipstick during the daytime, in which I spent the whole day taking midterms. I don’t care, as long as I think I look good 🙂
Enough blabbering now haha okay so ideally I wanted to do bright red eyeshadow with grey/black eyeshadow around it to give it a smokey effect but my lame-o palette doesn’t have red. Vice 3 doesn’t have a bright red either but it has colors that are closer to red than the ones that I currently have. Anyway, I made do with pink eyeshadow and unfortunately I didn’t have time for fake eyelashes so I just used mascara, along with some eyeliner. I’ve really gotten into wearing fake eyelashes now that I’m not terrified to apply them and that I’ve applied them successfully haha
I’m also wearing foundation and blush. I’m really liking wearing blush, I have never worn it before until last week when I randomly decided to try it. I never get flushed cheeks, even if I run or anything, so it’s cool having flushed cheeks now because of blush. I think in this case it doesn’t suggest that I’m hot and sweaty as if I had run a mile, but it looks really feminine and makes me feel all…”come hither” to attractive people lol I don’t even know what I’m saying. I feel beautiful, okay? lol
I decided to picture my rings today…I always wear rings but I’ve never shown them before. The one on my left hand is a black rose ring I got at a cheap store in Manhattan most likely. The rainbow ring is my pride ring, which I wear religiously so other queer people can know I’m queer too, although most people don’t notice it because it’s subtle. My former boss actually noticed it and asked me about it and it was really uncomfortable…but he asked me about it because he wanted to segue into talking about his gay father, so that was kinda cool.
The last ring I’m wearing is a creepy bunny that reminded me of Frank from Donnie Darko. The fact that it’s a bunny also makes me think of my favorite YouTuber, Bunny Meyer, or Grav3yardgirl. I consider myself a YouTube junkie, and I particularly love her videos because she’s so down to earth and also really crazy. I feel like if I met her we’d actually be friends, and she has become my fashion and makeup inspiration. She’s really funny too, her videos always make me feel better so…if you’re curious about her channel, click here.
Anyway, that’s today’s ensemble. Tomorrow I have an interview so I need to wear “professional” clothing but I found ways to personalize it and make it more “me” rather than the racist, sexist, etc idea of “professionalism.” When I post the pics I’ll tell you guys why I think “professionalism” is dumb.
Lastly, I decided to include two inspiring picture messages today. I’ve been struggling staying positive lately…between school, my family, my ex…there’s just a lot of layers to the problems I feel that I’m facing currently and I came across these pictures on Facebook today. They really resonated with me and I thought I’d share them.
Have a good night! xo
The cold, blue chains froze and stained my bony fingers as I gripped onto them, swinging.
Up, up….down, down…
I loved the rush of ascending into the sky, only to be pulled back to Earth by the blue chains.
Up, up…down, down….
Birds flew in a “V” overhead, and I relished at the sight of their dark bodies agains the bright, fiery colored leaves that dangled loosely from the trees. Every little breeze snapped the bond between a leaf and the tree, causing it to float down onto the browning grass.
Up, up…down, down…
I liked to bring my friends to the swings in my backyard, but it wasn’t really the same when they were with me. I didn’t enjoy the changing of the seasons when I was with them, instead we talked about crushes and ate boxes of Girl Scout cookies, sometimes serenading each other to stupid love songs.
Up, up…down, down…
Closing my eyes, I imagined myself flying away with the birds, feeling my hair being pulled behind me as I flew upward…but when my hair was blown back into my face it was a reminder that the blue chains hindered me from leaving.
Up, up…down, down…
I liked playing music while I swung, but sometimes I enjoyed the quiet and whispered to the trees all the troubles I was having at age 11, 12, 13…
Up, up…down, down…
My mom called to me from the window that dinner was ready.
For a second I was free of the blue chains, free to fly, but when the blue chains weren’t there, damn gravity always pushed me back down.
© 2014 Vic Romero
**image from Google