I decided at the outset that I was aiming for functionality, not art, in my bullet journal. If mine ends up looking more like my lab books in college (a mess that was a pretty good reflection of my thought process) I’ll consider it a success. That said, whenever I start to churn over productivity systems, I remind myself that the Manhattan Project, Project Apollo, and many other large efforts requiring a high level of productivity were done without a lot of the apps that clutter my phone and laptop today.

Of course, I could just imagine sitting in on a meeting with, say, Tom Kelly and Chris Kraft and a few others, and someone in the room saying, “Gosh, I wish there was a simpler way to plan this out than on drafting tables and vellum.”