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Ultra-Streamlined Style for bullet journal

I might have a little time here and there to do creative designs with my journal. But usually I just need it to help manage the day. What's the fastest way to manage a bullet journal? As with many things in life, it depends. Let me offer an overview of the Universal Journal ultra-streamlined style.

The Universal Journal style intends to help you spend as little time as possible setting up and using your bullet journal. It's counter productive to get burned out on a tool that's supposed to help you avoid burning out. This graphic recaps the basics. Check out some other posts on the topic. Bullet Journal Ultra-StreamlinedEfficient workflowDecluttering your JournalStreamlined Color CodingPrintables
Thanks for visiting Universal Journal. Got any minimalist ideas you'd like to share with the rest of us? Please comment here.

Ultra-Streamlined Style Part 3

In part 1 and part 2 of our Ultra-Streamlined bullet journal series we looked at a minimal effort approach to the Monthly Module. In this installment we'll look at horizontal design found on the official Bullet Journal website under the entry Top 5 Bujo Ideas in 2017.

In this horizontal timeline we still see ample space to write what we need, but perhaps in a more spacious design. In the Ultra-Streamlined style, if we take this horizontal design and try to keep effort to a minimum while still including everything needed, how would we do that? Here are some suggestions.


We all wear different hats from time to time. Our personal and professional lives are two of the most obvious examples. Add a side business, school, or any other category to the list, and you see how a journaling system of any kind can get messy. With this horizontal design, placement can help your calendar stay organized and easy to keep up with. An efficient technique can make all the difference.

Perhaps regular weekly events can be written close to the timeline, and irregular events written further away (to better grab your attention). Maybe personal and family stuff can be written below the line, and professional, hobby, business, school stuff on the top. What ever your preference, thoughtful placement of your information can put some method to the madness.


Notice in the included photo, the Saturdays and Sundays are a different color from the rest of the week. This simple technique makes it easy to quickly separate the weeks while setting up the module and while using it during the month. As for content, I personally use one color for work stuff, one for a side business, and one for everything else. A multi-color pen accommodates this easily.

In the example above, you'll see an area to the right side of the timeline. In the Ultra-Streamlined style, this would be used as your monthly tasks list, but obviously you can use it to suit your needs.

Combining placement and color can make for a quick and easy system to accommodate your life.

Habit Tracker

In the previous posts on the Ultra-Streamlined style, a habit tracker was included. This can still be accomplished with the horizontal timeline. Just move the timeline lower or higher on the page, or place it where ever you may need it. One side of the timeline (top or bottom) would be devoted to the normal calendar use, and the other to your habit tracker.

See part 1 and part 2 of the Ultra-Streamlined style.

If you've tried a horizontal timeline for your monthly log, comment here and tell us about it.


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In this ultra-streamlined approach to bullet journaling, it's not only the layouts and designs that are minimalist, but the techniques for using the system as well. The flow of your tasks, appointments, etc. from one module to another can be tricky. Or it can be simple. It's all a matter of how you manage these things.

In my journal, most items end up in the daily log for the day I intend to handle them. That may or may not happen on the actual day assigned but the most important thing is I don't lose track of stuff. The daily log is the last stage of a task/event filtering technique. T…

Streamlined Weekly Log

Not everyone uses a weekly log in their bullet journal. For those who do, here are three variants on one streamlined design. Each is an elegant 6 column spread with plenty of room for daily tasks an ample space for other information.

Variant 1: by kerrystudies on tumblr

Variant 2: by northernplanner on instagram

Variant 3: by u/ghostsco on reddit

Do you have other ideas for a weekly log? Comment here and be sure to subscribe!

DIY Add a paper pocket to your journal

Got a plain old notebook? There are plenty of options out there and you may not find one with all the features you like. But journalers are already familiar with customizing their journals and we tend to like that. Here's a super easy DIY option for a pocket.

Not everyone needs a pocket in their journal. If you want a pocket but don't have one, here is a very simple method using one Legal or A4 size sheet of paper and double-sided tape. (Affiliate links included.)

The Universal Journals are printed by Any print on demand service will be limited compared to a traditional printer. As capable as is (with quick turn around, worldwide availability, lots of product options for customers, and more), there are lots of things journalers might want in their Universal Journal that Lulu just can't do. At least not at this time. But this also makes for ideal customization. Make it your own.

Got any other ideas for adding a pocket to a book? Comment here. Be sure to su…