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VIDEO: How to Color Code your Bullet Journal

It's been a hot minute since I posted my last post about color coding your bullet journal, so I wanted to give an update of how I've been color coding recently.

Color coding is a great tool for any organization system, but it's real easy to get distracted with a system that's more complicated than it needs to be. I use one color coding system across all of my platforms, that includes my bullet journal, my monthly calendar, and my google calendar.

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RELATED: How I manage my Time in College

When creating a color coding system it can be tempting to use as many colors as possible, especially when you get those 20 packs of highlighters or colored pens. But I've found that 5-6 colors is the perfect amount for keeping your obligations organized at a glance.

The trick is to make your categories broad enough to be actually useful. So let's go over my color coding system that I've used the past few years.

Here you can see my color code key where I have six different colors. Blue is personal stuff (like dinner plans or parties), yellow is work (my schedule and important meetings I have), orange is all my school stuff (homework, adviser meetings etc.), green is my academic extracurriculars (club meetings or resume builders), purple is health (my workouts and meal prep reminders), and finally pink is anything blog related.

RELATED: Setting up a New Bullet Journal

So let's take a minute to see how I use my color coding system in different parts of my bullet journal.


So first here you'll see my index, and if you're kinda new to bullet journaling an index might seem like a waste of time. But a lot of times I'll put notes from a class or meeting into my bullet journal that I'll want to reference back.

The trick to color coding your index is to focus on things you'll need to know later. So here you'll see I've highlighted a realtor meetings, some general long term goals, blog production calendars and that sort of thing.

RELATED: Blogging in a Bullet Journal

What I don't highlight on my index are daily entries because they don't fit easily into a category and I don't often need to reference them back.

Monthly Spread

The next place we'll look in my bullet journal is a monthly spread, which I don't use too often since I'm in school. If you're interested in my current system, definitely check out this video about how I use a bullet journal in college.

But I do want to show you from when I was using a monthly spread, because I know a lot of people use them regularly.

RELATED: Making the Most of your Monthly Spread

Here you can see a traditional monthly bullet journals spread with my calendar on the left, and goals for the month on the right. I use to be really into writing out goals for the month, and I'd always color code them to see my progress.

Daily Entry

Now let's look at some daily entries because that's where I spend most of my time in my bullet journal. I keep my daily entries really simple because I'm not very artsy and I don't like to spend a lot of time doodling.

RELATED: My Simple Bullet Journal Flip Through

At the beginning of each day I write out each class I have then any todos I need to get done for that day. I'll also go in and highlight each appointment or task for the corresponding category. This helps me quickly see what things have priority.

For example, I really prioritize work and school stuff (yellow and orange) because those things are most important to me. My health and personal stuff (purple and blue) are a little bit lower down the totem pole, so if I have to make some decisions about which thing am I not going to do today I cut out working out over Spanish homework.

Here you'll also see notes that I get throughout the day like this upcoming quiz. I normally get these notes during class, so I don't have time to highlight them. Also, I only keep a set of highlighters at my desk at home and at my desk at work so I'm not having to lug around a bunch of office supplies.

There are also a few weeks where I don't highlight my daily entries at all because they're a little less hectic. For example the spread below this was right after the semester started where I didn't have as much going on.

RELATED: Creating a color coding system that works

I didn't need to highlight things this week because I knew I was going to be able to get everything done. Now that we're into the middle of the semester I've been highlighting my entries a lot more and that's fine!


Color coding is simply a tool for you to use that helps you stay organized. It doesn't have to be one hundred percent perfect or be the end-all-be-all. It's a system to help you organize your thoughts and tasks, and it's not suppose to get in the way of you actually doing things.

What's important is finding a system that works for you in the long term and is flexible enough to fit your needs. Was this helpful? What other color coding tips do y'all have? Comment below!

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