5 Popular Bullet Journal Myths That Are Not True

A Bullet Journal spread with stamps and stickers on the page. Flowers and stamps dotted around the journal on the table.

Photo by Estée Janssens on Unsplash

You come across a bullet journal spread or photographs and you feel the urge to start, but there is so much information online about bullet journaling and not all of it is true. There are bullet journal myths that circle the bullet journaling community that need to be debunked.

Have you got a brand new bullet journal and the doubt is creeping in? Are you worried that you be able to be consistent? Do you think that you’re not creative enough? These are some of the myths that are going to be debunked and should not be the reason that you don’t try bullet journaling.

Bullet journaling is a powerful organisation tool that can help you boost your productivity and improve your productivity, so do not let a myth put you off utilising this great system. 

Here are 5 bullet journal myths that you should know before starting a bullet journal:

1. It Is Too Expensive 

You scroll on Instagram and Pinterest an all you see is beautiful journal designs using beautiful pens, paint, stickers or even washi tape. You are drawn into thinking you need all the supplies on the market to have a successful bullet journal. But it doesn’t need to be expensive at all.

Realistically, all you need is a pen and bullet journal; it is as simple as that. If you are on a tight budget, you do not need to purchase a branded, dotted notebook. However, if you want to purchase specific stationery supplies then that it good too. I love stationery shopping!

2. You Need To Use It As A Planner

Bullet journaling has been primarily shared and advertised as a monthly planner. Yes, it is one of the most efficient planner systems on the market, but you do not need to use it as a planner. If you wish to use it as a monthly planner that is great; however, it can be a journal for gratitude morning pages, doodling and practising hand lettering for example.

You can tailor this journal for whatever you want to focus on. It can be your space to explore your creativity as a form of self-care or even if you just want to brain dump ideas, thoughts and feelings. It is about your bullet journal being individual to your needs.

3. There Is Only One Way Of Bullet Journaling

There is the official bullet journal method that Ryder Carroll developed, but over time, bullet journalers have developed their own unique style and habits that work for them.

The joy of bullet journaling is that it is super versatile and you can design it how you want. One aspect of a design or ideas may work for some but not for others, so it is important you should use it how you want to. There is no pressure to have your journal looking a certain way.

A bullet journal spread that has cut out pictures of flowers glued on to the pages with grass tapped onto the pages. with a quote and words written in black cursive inkPhoto by Emily Park on Unsplash

4. You Need To Be Creative 

When you hear someone say ‘bullet journal’, you instantly think of creative or elaborate spreads. For some people, they love having that creative outlet, experimenting with doodles and lettering.

However, you do not have to be creative; you don’t even have to use colour if you would prefer not to. You can have a minimalistic design in just black and white. If you are planning to use your bullet journal as your monthly planner, then people sometimes find that a less creative design is more functional.

Once starting your bullet journal, you can try different layouts and see what works best for you. If you want your pages to be more colourful and creative, adding stickers and washi tape can be a simple way to achieve this if you do not feel confident enough to doodle or draw.

5. It Takes Too Much Time & You Have To Be Consistent

You do not need to pick up your bullet journal every day especially if you are not using it as a monthly planner. It may be just that creative and mindful activity that you use when you need some self-care.

If you are using your bullet journal as a planner, you will develop the habit of reaching for it and utilising it to be more productive. However, you do not have to reach for it on a daily basis in order for it to be working for you.

There is nothing wrong with taking your time when designing and creating your monthly spreads, but if you are worried about it taking up too much time, it won’t if you want a simple and quick set up and minimal spreads. 

These are top myths and comments that I see online about bullet journaling. It is important that uo know that these ate not true and bullet journaling can work for you.


What bullet journal myths can you debunk? Has this made you think about starting a bullet journal? I’d love to hear in the comments.





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96 thoughts on “5 Popular Bullet Journal Myths That Are Not True

  1. Definitely the myth around needing lots of fancy stationary stopped me for a while, but like you said, you literally just need a pen and notebook to get started! I’ve started mine up again for my blog and I’m loving it so far – keeping it minimal to start with and it’s all going well! Xx

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I needed to read this! I’ve wanted to start a bullet journal for so long and I finally got a notebook yesterday! The myth about having to be artsy & creative is what has stopped me in the past as i never know what to draw or write and am afraid I’ll ruin it but I’m going to take the plunge as they look like so much fun! Great post as always! 😊💖

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I think some of these myths apply to more than bullet journaling! Not being creative is something that holds many people back from writing and drawing and journaling. The trick is not too think to much and just start doing what you yearn to do.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Some of those things like the need to make it absolutely perfect has stopped me from starting a bujo before but I’m gonna go for it this time and make one for school! I am so excited and have already bought one, just have to wait for its arrival. I can’t wait to customize it. Just have to remember it doesn’t have to be tied to one layout and I can do whatever I want! Thanks for sharing Lauren x

    Geraldine | https://geraldinetalks.com

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Thanks for sharing these myths, Lauren. I’ve definitely believed in the beginning that more supplies = better bujo, but to be honest, I tend to use the same markers/colors. And I totally agree, the bullet journal is amazing because you start one whenever, wherever.

    Eena ☼ cabin twenty-four

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Not being creative or having the right supplies have put me off starting off a bullet journal. Also I didn’t realise there was no need to wait until Jan 1st! lol. I feel silly for thinking so. I’ve been thinking about starting one to keep up with my exposure therapy work.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. so great! these myths have absolutely stopped me from making a bullet journal. i’m not good at drawing or calligraphy so that has made me feel like i wouldn’t be good at making a bullet journal but i need to get over my fear and just make one because i love the sound of them. this is such a helpful post and reassuring

    mich / simplymich.com

    Liked by 1 person

  8. See, I think bullet journaling would be very ‘me’, but I’ve never got around to it. However, this post has reinvigorated me – I’m going to check out the basics on the link you provided right after finishing this comment. You make it sound very chill and low pressure, which I think is good – you don’t want to go into anything feeling stressed!


  9. Lauren thanks for debunking those bullet journal myths! One if the main reasons I shy away from bullet journals is the idea I need to draw. I guess I see some really pretty elaborate journals full of color and graphics…I’m always left like, “wow, I want mine to look like that”😂 but I need to remember it’s my journal, my way👏🏾

    Natonya | https://www.justnatonya.wordpress.com

    Liked by 1 person

  10. This is so true! When I started using the bullet journal system about a couple of years ago, I used to feel this immense pressure to make my spreads and trackers look pretty. Because that’s what I’d see all around. But now I just use a diary and a pen and it works for me splendidly. And I do make pretty spreads when I feel like but that’s just because I want to 🙂
    Thank you for this lovely post!

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Using a bullet journal has pulled everything together. From ideas and scribbles to long term plans and future schedules. The freedom to decorate or not is in the hands of the journalist. Personally I don’t. The myths should be destroyed and buried, but we all enjoy reading stories right, so no harm in scanning Pinterest for the pretty layouts, just don’t start buying. Get a good book and put pen to paper. Own your mistakes and love what you do. Thanks for pointing out the myths.

    Liked by 1 person

  12. I love how you debunk all of these myths about having a bullet journal. I agree with you – you can start anytime! I say the same thing about working out, you don’t need to wait to the new year to start. If you really want to start something, you would do it right away. Oh man, I used to be so OCD with my journal!! It HAD to be perfect. I learned to embrace my mistakes, hehe. Thanks for sharing all of these facts!!

    Nancy ♥ exquisitely.me

    Liked by 1 person

  13. I’ve never owned a bullet journal or ever given it much thought. I think I will look into this a bot more as it might be helpful for me. Thanks for sharing x


  14. All of the things you said are true! I actually covered the whole bottom of my page with Washington tape because I made the calendar go too far😆

    Liked by 1 person

  15. Honestly, everything on this list is a reason I don’t bullet journal 😦 When I think of a bullet journal, it somehow reminds me of my perfectionist side and it refrains me from being more personal and natural when writing. Hopefully, I can get over them! Thanks for sharing xx



  16. I’ll admit I’ve been intimidated by bullet journaling for many of the reasons you mentioned! This post helps remind me it doesn’t have to be perfect to be useful. Thank you!

    Liked by 1 person

  17. Great tips and debunked myths! I bullet journal for a couple of years and although I still love it, using a planner is so much easier as I’m in college. But I love the tip that you don’t have to use it as a planner, I think a lot of people forget that!

    Alexis| http://cafe-beauty.com/


  18. These are great highlights of a bullet journal. I use a B6 Stalogy to journal in. I am not definitely have my own style and use it as I see fit on what ever day I pick it up. It is a great form of self care for me as well as excellent for memory keeping.

    Liked by 1 person

  19. I have a bullet journal that I write in now and again. My planner has habit tracker pages as well as planning pages, so I just use it to doodle in or write ideas in. I would like to be more creative with it in the future.


  20. I definitely believed most of these before! All of the ones I see are so pretty and perfect so I felt like mine would have to be. That is why I never started one to begin with. Maybe I will have to try one this summer. Thank you!

    Liked by 1 person

  21. Great post for anyone thinking about getting into bullet journalling who hasn’t started due to one of these things! For me, I’m not creative and that’s one of the main reasons why I don’t do it. But the creative aspect is what draws me in and if my bullet journal looked crapped, it’d just annoy me haha

    Liked by 1 person

  22. I completely agree with this! Mostly with needing expensive stationery, I mean yes you can splurge on it, but at the end of the day you will need things you have already, maybe you will invest in a journal but that’s about it. Also creativity, I think this stops a lot of people not only to start a bujo but also paint, write and any other creative activity. You don’t need to become the next Van Gogh to find something that makes you feel better x

    Liked by 1 person

  23. Completely agree with you on all of these. When I first started bullet journaling, I was a bit worried that I wouldn’t be able to keep it up or that I wasn’t creative enough but having one has improved my creativity 🥳 whilst totally organising my life x

    Liked by 1 person

  24. These are so true!! There are so many bullet journaling myths that stopped people to get started. The truth is bullet journaling also helps you to be organized. It definitely doesn’t have to be expensive or fancy. Thanks for sharing! xx


  25. I really love this post. Before starting a bullet journal myself a few years back, I used to think most of these things were true too. And I think the most important thing is remembering that there is no ‘right’ way to bullet journal ❤

    Liked by 1 person

  26. i’ve always thought that you need to be really creative to do a bullet journal and that’s always put me off creating one, i have tried in the past but gave up after a month or so, it’s nice to read that you don’t have to have all fancy stuff to create one. i think i might give it another go soon.

    Liked by 1 person

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