Have you ever found yourself in a really good language learning flow, only to have a couple of days off and fall off the wagon? I know this has happened to me numerous times, whether when learning a language, trying to work out daily, or even trying to keep a housecleaning routine. You're doing great, you're feeling organised, and then you have a day off or a temptation and you just can't seem to get back on track.
So what if you had a system to organise your housecleaning routine or language learning that was proven to improve productivity? Bullet Journaling not only improves productivity, it is also extremely flexible in terms of personalizing it for your own needs. Personally, I’m never as efficient as when I’m using the bullet journal system.
So how does it work?
It’s fairly simple, really. You set yourself a number of keys, which basically mean you choose which symbols have which meanings. Clarifying your keys is, pun intended, key to using bullet journaling successfully.
These are the keys I personally use in my bullet journal, however a quick google search or Pinterest search will give many more options.
Once your keys are sorted, you need to decide on a format. This, however, doesn’t need to be strictly adhered to – indeed, I would actually encourage you to try out different things, since you will know when you’ve got a format that works for you. I like planning my whole year very briefly at the end or the beginning of my notebook (I use a Moleskine with dotted pages, such as this one, having weekly spreads with the key events from each day, then doing daily pages with detailed to dos and agendas.
You can also incorporate spreads and pages for anything you want to track, such as:
- Food eaten
- Water consumption
- Budget and spending
- Words written
- And – you guessed it – language learning.
Since bullet journaling is almost sure to guarantee you to stay on track, the system is perfect for scheduling your everyday language learning habits.
How To Use It For Language Learning
My number one tip would be to use Pinterest for inspiration for this! Pinterest is excellent to see how other people are designing their bullet journals and to get inspiration for your own. Personally I have a folder just for bullet journal inspiration - it can become an addiction! - and whenever I am struggling for ideas I have a browse in there.
Abigail from Polyglot Progress has also made a really informative video on how to use bullet journaling for language learning, perfect to ease yourself into the system!
Another option, if you do like things to be ready made for you, is the Fluent Language Habit Toolkit. The toolkit combines the best parts of the bullet journal system and effective language learning into one cohesive package.
I started working on it in my own bullet journal, as I realised that there was no all-in-one system out there offering goals, tracking, and review.
The kit is designed to be printed out as either A4 or A5 and is perfect to glue into a notebook for easier overview of your progress. It provides you with a complete set of tools that you can use to make steady progress and start building towards fluency in any language, and is based on 20 years experience of teaching languages.