Tag: happy

Beating perfectionism with a bullet journal

Beating perfectionism with a bullet journal

If you’re a perfectionist, you know what it’s like. You start a new project, you’re all excited, then three minutes in you make a mistake. What then?

For me, that often involved rage-quitting, though my rage is a quiet one. I have, for example, left many knitted items to languish for months or even years because of a mistake I cannot see by the time I pick it up again. This is a thing I do regularly.

However, it’s a thing I’m trying to avoid. I’m also doing my best to improve my productivity and time management, especially since I’m starting a Master of Education course in September, gulp. When I heard about bullet journaling I didn’t realise it would be for me, but I’m really glad I picked it up.

You can read a little about my bullet journal in my epic post from a while back. I talk about the fact it is for flexibility instead of perfection, and that’s exactly why I do it.

In a bullet journal, it doesn’t matter if you make a mistake. You either fix it or you move on. If you do something that doesn’t work for you for that month, you can switch it up next month, or right now (as I did!). It’s an unplanned space for your own brain to process, and it’s very freeing.

Oddly, the bullet journal method – or how I use it, anyway – has made my creativity spike. It’s not that I have more ideas; it’s that I’m not afraid to try any of them now. When I realised I had an old leather journal with no space left in it, I decided to cut out the binding and re-bind it myself with my own paper. THEN I ACTUALLY DID THE THING.

Knitter Nerd: Leather journal
See? DID. THE. THING.

Here is the difference: bullet journaling is helping me try new things with less panic about it going wrong.

It doesn’t have to be perfect to be good or useful.

I know this isn’t the only way to avoid perfectionism; there’s a lot of methods out there. The way I see it is anything that lets you rewrite that narrative on the importance of ‘perfect’ is great. Perfect might exist, but I sure as hell doubt many people will ever reach it.

Bullet journaling has helped me enjoy the process and witness my own growth as I move from month to month and spread to spread. It’s not perfect and never will be, but I’m getting much better at accepting that and being proud of myself despite it.

Since the bullet journal world has changed mine, I’ll be sharing some of my favourite YouTube videos and channels over the next few weeks to hopefully bring a few of you the kind of inspiration I feel from the whole method.

If you have any thoughts on either bullet journals or other ways out of perfectionism, I’d love to hear it!

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International Yarn Bowl

Knitnotknit 007

Look at this beauty!

I have some wonderful friends. Some of them are vaguely aware that I like things to do with yarn despite me being so quiet and subtle about it (ahem). It was my birthday last month and this lovely hand-made yarn bowl arrived from Spain two days ago.

The lovely person who sent it (my friend Frankie) lives in the UK – we went to university together and bonded over X-Men. So she ordered if from the UK to be sent to Canada from Spain. This is quite the international yarn bowl.

Since this is my first yarn bowl I was excited to use it. Turns out they’re incredibly handy as well as being cute, especially when you have cats who like to lie in awkward positions and get tangled up in the yarn (I’m looking at you, Sean). I am definitely a convert.

Wonderful Things

There are many reasons to be happy these days. I am finally living where I was always meant to be with the woman I have loved my entire adult life (and a large chunk of my teens, too). We are surrounded by fantastic animals who brighten up my day with cuddles and long walks. I have access to two brilliant yarn stores even if I can’t really afford yarn right now (which is okay because I still haven’t used my Wollmeise). Marvel is spewing out movies and comics left, right and centre which makes me a happy bunny.

Point is: life is pretty good.

It helps that the internet is so full of interesting things lately. My complete and utter obsession with Welcome To Night Vale has been the highlight of that and I’ll be writing a post on just why you should be listening to it if you’re not already, especially if you’re queer and/or a surreal horror fan like myself.

Art by Elicadragon
Art by Elicadragon

One such wondrous thing I have discovered is that Jasika Nicole, the awesome and adorable lady who played Astrid Farnsworth in the epic series Fringe, not only voices Intern Dana on Welcome to Night Vale but also is an amazing comic artist. It’s heavy on queer representation and is totally sweet in the most glorious way so go read Closetalkers immediately.

Times like these make me wonder what I would be like without the internet being around as it has been. I would never have met my lovely girlfriend so would (presumably) still be living in England. Deeper still, I might not have realised I’m gay for a lot longer. Willow and Tara’s kiss gave me a slight clue but without furious internet searches about homosexuality as a result, where would I be?

Tara-and-Willow-tara-maclay-3287268-1296-730

Of course I would still be a complete geek but without easy access to other fans of similar things, would I feel like a freak for getting so obsessed over things like podcasts and comics? Not that podcasts would exist!

And knitting. Would I have taken to it so strongly without a community and pattern database like Ravelry to egg me on and push me forward? Without knitting blogs to read? Without youtube to teach me how to do a long-tail cast on?

I know people still managed these things long before the internet came around and I know I would have managed fine anyway. It’s just strange to think how differently I would have found my path if I had grown up in a time where we didn’t have the internet. Especially since I almost missed it, generationally speaking: I still remember the dial-up creaking and blipping!

The world is full of wondrous things and the internet reflects that. I guess today I’m just feeling especially glad to have this community. So thank you, people who read and comment and post their own awesome stuff. You make my path much clearer.

Enter the Geek

It always amuses me when people are surprised by my geekiness. I guess somehow, despite my best efforts, I come off as normal to people who aren’t looking very hard. It’s the same kind of amusement as when people don’t realise I’m gay, often even after a conversation about my decidedly female partner (I talk about her a lot).

That said, people seem a lot less surprised when they realise I’m a knitter. I don’t know what that says about me.

I’m not the most brain-active of people today so I’m going to write a little about a few things that are making me happy right now.

Ms. Marvel

This morning I went to town for a cuppa and an apricot croissant to accompany me in catching up on a few comics. Ms. Marvel is a WONDER. It’s garnered a lot of attention for being about a Muslim teenager (the letters page in #2 are lovely) but even aside from that awesomeness, it’s well-written with gorgeous art and I can’t get enough of it. Can’t wait for #3.

My Nintendo 3DS

I bought it from work second-hand and haven’t really stopped since. I’ve played lots of Pokemon Black then moved on to Zoo Tycoon and now I’m having a good go at Super Mario Brothers. There’s a reason I won’t let myself get seriously into gaming; I know I’d lose years of my life to it and I need to knit!

Speaking of which…

Knitting Sweaters

I’m currently knitting a very nice sweater/jumper for someone close to me and it’s making me happy. Of course I can’t actually tell you what pattern or show you photos in case said person visits my blog but that will be coming soon. There’s something very satisfying about making something so substantial and useful. I’m also going to start a mini-one for someone else soon.

My New Laptop

It’s nothing flashy but I’ve needed one for a long time. I got it super cheap but it has a full keyboard which means I don’t have to copy/paste the V into my words. Which, considering ctrl+v is paste, was especially annoying. Plus it has a webcam!

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