Dot Journaling (aka Bullet Journaling!) Book Review

Dot Journaling (aka Bullet Journaling!) Book Review

Dot Journaling (aka Bullet Journaling) Book Review

Ahead of the curve in many things, I am inadvertently in my 14th year of “bullet-journaling,” doing it before it had a name. We just called it my “red book” around here. You can see them all above.  People often ask me how I can get done all that I do, and this practice is part of that answer, with prayer and a supportive husband being the rest of it.

I started doing this type of book just to have all the different parts of my life in the same place, instead of scattered everywhere. Then I carried this one thing with me and could find what I needed at anytime. Since then, Ryder Carroll coined the term “bullet journaling” for these kind of books, and you can see his short intro video here. You can see all sorts of fancy bullet journaling pages on social media; I even have a board for it on Pinterest (see here).

Now some smart young person has collated those good ideas in a book, which is much more efficient than scouring the internet. Because “bullet journaling” is copyrighted, the author calls it “dot journaling,” but it is the same thing.   I read every word of this and thought the only thing missing was a weight loss tracker… something I’m considering adding to mine. This primer is easy to read, motivating, and accessible; I give it five stars, because it does the job well.

Together with a good quality journal, it makes a fabulous gift for someone that wants to get their life together, get more done, and be more organized. My favorite journal to do this in is Leuchtturm1917 because it has paper that doesn’t bleed through, and it has numbered pages with an index. It comes in a huge range of beautiful colors; my husband’s is blue, our younger daughter’s is olive green– check them out on Amazon. They come in lined paper, blank paper, dotted paper and graph paper. I use the graph paper in the A4 size. This weekend, I’m starting my next one, as you can see in the photo, which is why this post is on my radar right now.

In my red book I have a running to do list, I take notes from books or at meetings, have a calendar, a future planner,  a gratitude list, a book list, meal plans, reminders, inspiration, and habit trackers (see first photo below for the one I made yesterday for the upcoming month of November). An ongoing index keeps it all easy to find. It keeps me focused, on task, energized, and objective.

I can’t recommend actively keeping a book like this enough. Start one for yourself! And this companion how-to book can help you customize your own in a way that will be most effective for you. Do it and you’ll thank me!

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I work to amplify good wherever I find it. I love color, texture, beauty, great ideas, nature, metaphor, deliciousness, genuine spirituality, and exploring new territory. I encourage authenticity, nurture creativity, champion sustainability, promote peace, and hope to foster a new renaissance where we all are free to be our most fulfilled, multifaceted, and terrific selves. Read more here.


  1. Gloria 6 years ago

    How have I never heard of this before?

    • Author
      Polly Castor 6 years ago

      I don’t know, but knowing those people are out there is why I wrote the post. I can’t recommend it highly enough. I bought the reviewed book at Byrds Books, and you can too!

  2. Anna 6 years ago

    It’s Ryder Carroll, not Stevens. Just an FYI.

  3. Laura B 6 years ago

    I think it was Ryder Carroll who coined the term “bullet journal.” Thank you for the review of this book; I’ve been wondering about it!

  4. Ian 6 years ago

    Actually his name is Ryder Carroll not Ryder Stevens. This is a good link to him

    • Author
      Polly Castor 6 years ago

      Thank you! I just corrected it!


  1. […] loved this idea, and since I’ve been keeping a Bullet Journal for so long, this new list fits easily into both that practice and my daily prayer life. I have since enjoyed […]

  2. […] A book from an independent bookstore: Dot Journaling by Rachel Wilkerson Miller (my five star review here) […]

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