The Best Gel Pens for Your Bullet Journal

My kind of rainbow
My kind of rainbow

Updated August 02nd, 2018

When it comes to being a note-taker, I have to admit, I'm a Bullet Journal disciple. A few items that I love having nearby when it comes to desk duty are flowers (big fan of long-lasting spider mums), inspirational quotes and fun notebooks and my reliable pens.

In the age of the phone memo, I still enjoy taking handwritten notes. That's why the Bullet Journal is so great for me - I find that it actually makes it easier for me to stay on top of things and gather my thoughts when I physically write them down. Plus I can make it look pretty, which matters to me if I ever want to read back on it!

I used to use regular pens for my creative note-taking, but now that I've been using gel pens, there's simply no turning back. They don't smear, they're super colorful, they write smoothly, and I have like 14 of them so I'm set for life! Since creative doodles are the driving force of my notes, it's important to me to have the right gel pens for the job.

My typical note-taking consists of Instagram loop reminders, orders and arrival dates, blog collaborations, shopping lists and more. What I really love about hand-written note taking is the ability to cross everything out once the task has been completed. I know that's possible to do on your phone, but there's a different kind of joy that comes with physically crossing something off a list. Maybe there are other anal-retentive diligent people out there who understand?

Gel pens allow me to make the notes carefully and draw precise lines. Maybe it's that I grew up loving comic books, but there's something about the bold black line that feels organized and peaceful to me. If I'm going to be organized, I know that I have to make sure it's something I can show off too.

Are you into hand-written notes? I've heard that some schools in certain states have gotten rid of cursive classes as they've deemed it to be irrelevant. I think that's quite sad as I've always loved good penmanship! I bet more people would appreciate it, too, if they were working with gel pens!

Why gel pens work for notes

It's one thing to create a beautiful idea, but it's a whole other story when it comes to recalling that idea at the desired time. Undoubtedly, no one can deny that they forget things every once in a while. Some people are born to conjure and recall ideas, but most of us forget ideas ten minutes after we had just remembered them.

It's called drawing a blank.

Ideas come and go like shooting stars, and it takes a brilliant mind to remember what those flying flames looked like. Interestingly, modern man has discovered a way to snatch those shooting stars right out of the sky and keep them in their possession forever.

Basically, a bullet journal is any kind of journal kept for writing things down. Not only does it allow the possessor to write his thoughts down, but also to customize, compact and collect them in such a manner that is fitting to its owner.

Doodling is a large part of my bullet journal. I have a goal for 2018 and that is to get back to work on my blog and other ventures but do not forget my creative side. I am hoping my bullet journal can combine these too!

I can create lists and brainstorm while practicing my hand lettering and doodling! A collection of gel pens of different thicknesses really help - all it takes is some visual interest and I'm more likely to want to look at my to-do list. There's also such a sense of accomplishment when you check something off the list!

But it is very important to note that bullet journaling is not only for the creative people. At its core, it is really just a super effective way to organize lists and get your thoughts down on paper.

Gel Pens for coloring & Interest

My bullet journal is like my brain. When I'm contemplating something or trying to learn something, I love integrating the ideas into my bullet journal. A little color really goes a long way!

Using gel pens for coloring is the fastest and easiest way to help my organization and keep me organized once I'm there. By color coding each part of my life, I can see at a glance what needs to be done - it doesn't have to be too advanced either. Just use your gel pens to color the side of a page and boom, instant index.

Bullet journals have helped me see that I need balance in my life. If I want to pursue music, sports, or service, something will have to give. Looking at the gel pens colors allows me to see what I'm doing most of or not enough of.

Some things I track using gel pens for coloring in my lists: 

  • Prayer lists
  • Exercise
  • Daily habits
  • Sunday sermon notes
  • Booklists

While many of our bullet journal spreads are artsy, the original bullet journal system is far from it. I encourage the creativity because my I enjoy it and it feels better.

Anything you enjoy, you tend to take ownership over, and if I take ownership over their schedule, then we're 95% of the way to taking more ownership of my life.

It's silly, but having beautiful gel pen drawings, quotes, and colors make me happy to look in my planner. this means I want to look in it, and do the things to complete a page. Plus, looking back over the years I can see what worked and what didn't.

Each month I take stock and see what worked for me and what didn't. I change up my colors, pick the gel pen outlines that I liked or want to reuse, and then I try again. I don't have to worry about it being perfect, the only thing that matters is making it work for me.

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