My Digital Bullet Journal on the iPad Pro

All about my digital bullet journal on the iPad GoodNotes app. How to use a digital bullet journal and some of my favorite spreads. Come learn how to use your digital bullet journal on the iPad ♡

My Digital Bullet Journal on the iPad Pro

A digital bullet journal allows me to create beautiful designs I can keep on my iPad pro or print them and use on my paper bullet journal. This blog post explains what is a digital bullet journal and how to use it. I also share a couple of spreads I have created through the years.

Use the table of contents below to jump to different parts of the blog post.

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What is a Digital Bullet Journal?

A digital bullet journal is an interactive notebook used on the iPad. The planner has links called  hyperlinks. When you click on a link the planner takes you to a specific page on the planner. For example, look at the image below. The pink arrows point to the parts of the planner that are interactive. When you click on the one of the tabs or bullet point you are automatically taken to a specific page of the planner.

Digital planner on top of an iPad pro mockup. The top of the image has pink flowers on the left and a computer keyboard.

Check out the video below to learn how I decorate and edit my digital planner. You can watch all my plan-with-me videos on my YouTube channel.


What Apps can I use on my iPad?

The most popular iPad apps for digital bullet journal are GoodNotes, ZoomNotes, and Notability. Popular Android and Windows apps for digital bullet journal: EzPDF, Xodo, and Metamoji.

Some of my favorite features about digital planning in the iPad: the undo button, the ability to resize images, being able to change the color of my handwriting, and adding different fonts to my planner.


How to Use a Digital Bullet Journal?

  1. Crete your own digital planner or buy a pre-made digital planner.
  2. Download the GoodNotes app on your iPad and  use the “+” to add the planner. Android and Windows users try the apps Noteshelf, EzPDF, Xodo and Metamoji.
  3. Follow the steps on this tutorial to learn how to decorate your digital planner!

This page contains affiliate links to products I use, love, and highly recommend. I receive a small commission for purchases made through links in this blog post. Thank you for your support. 


Index & Key

The image below shows the first two pages of my digital bullet journal in the GoodNotes app. On the left page, I love putting images that make me smile or that are pretty. On the right page you will find the index.

If you zoom in you will notice that on the left margin there are numbers. When I click on a number the app automatically takes me to a specific page on the planner. That way I don’t have to scroll through the pages, I simply click on a number and start planning.

Index Digital Bullet Journal, Digital Planner GoodNotes, iPad Planner

The image below was the first digital bullet journal spread I ever created. I love the way the spread turned out. It allowed me to explore how I wanted my designs to look digitally. The quote at the bottom right says:

“Meeting you was fate, becoming your friend was a choice, but falling in love with you I had no control over.” – Teresa Conroy

Index Digital Bullet Journal, Digital Planner GoodNotes

These are the key shortcuts  I use on my digital bullet journal. They help organize my ideas and thoughts. I try to keep the key to a minimum of five or six things to remember what each symbol represents easily.

Key bullet journal, digital bullet journal, digital planner goodnotes

My Favorite Monthly & Weekly spreads

On this blog post, I’m only including the layouts that I love! You can find more pictures of my monthly layouts here. They are categorized and organized by month.

All my layouts are full of pastel colors, flowers, and girly stickers. The layouts represent my personality and a specific theme I chose for the month. In all my designs, I like to include a quote to start the month. The quotes are from books that I was reading and that made me think differently about certain topics.

This savings tracker is my favorite! My boyfriend and I are saving for our first home and I’m currently using this tracker to know how much money I’m putting aside every month. If you zoom in, you’ll notice that I’m using patterns with different colors to fill in the jar.

Savings Tracker bullet journal, digital bullet journal, digital planner goodnotes, iPad planner
January spreads

The image below is the cover page for the month of January. Followed by the weekly spread. The quote on the top right says:

“Just do what works for you, because there will always be someone who think differently…” ― Michelle Obama

January cover page bullet journal, digital bullet journal, digital planner goodnotes, iPad planner
Click here to learn more about this layout.
weekly spread bullet journal, digital bullet journal, digital planner goodnotes, iPad planner
January Digital Bullet Journal, Digital Planner GoodNotes, iPad Planner, Digital Planner Stickers

February spreads

February cover page inspired by Valentine’s day.

February cover page bullet journal, digital bullet journal, digital planner goodnotes, iPad planner
Click here to learn more about this layout.

February weekly spread

February weekly spread, digital bullet journal, digital planner goodnotes, iPad planner

The quote on the top right says:

“You are my best friend as well as my lover, and I do not know which side of you I enjoy the most. I treasure each side, just as I have treasured our life together.” ― Nicholas Sparks, The Notebook

February bullet journal, digital bullet journal, digital planner goodnotes, iPad planner

March spreads
March cover page bullet journal, digital bullet journal, digital planner goodnotes, iPad planner
Click here to learn more about this layout.

The quote on the top right says:

“If there is one lesson I’ve learned lately, it’s the importance of telling the universe what you want.” ― Ricky Martin, Me

March calendar bullet journal, digital bullet journal, digital planner goodnotes, iPad planner

I love the way this weekly spread turned out. It’s minimalist and cute at the same time. I created a free printable from this spread.


April spreads
April cover page bullet journal, digital bullet journal, digital planner goodnotes, iPad planner
Click here to learn more about this layout.
Weeklt spread bullet journal, digital bullet journal, digital planner goodnotes, iPad planner

May spreads

In my Youtube Channel, I post videos of how I set up my monthly layouts on my digital bullet journal.

May cover page bullet journal, digital bullet journal, digital planner goodnotes, iPad planner
Click here to learn more about this layout.
May cover page bullet journal, digital bullet journal, digital planner goodnotes, iPad planner

June spreads
June cover page bullet journal, digital bullet journal, digital planner goodnotes, iPad planner
Click here to learn more about this layout.
June weekly spread bullet journal, digital bullet journal, digital planner goodnotes, iPad planner

July spreads

The quote in the middle says:

“Life was messy. Always had been and always would be and that was just the way it was, so why bother complaining? You either did something about it or you didn’t, and then you lived with the choice you made.” ― Nicholas Sparks, The Best of Me

July cover page bullet journal, digital bullet journal, digital planner goodnotes, iPad planner
Click here to learn more about this layout.
July daily tracker bullet journal, digital bullet journal, digital planner goodnotes, iPad planner

August spreads

This is the first calendar I created in my digital planner, this is from 2017. I love the way the color purple and green mix together.

August bullet journal, digital bullet journal, digital planner goodnotes, iPad planner
Click here to learn more about this layout.

The background of these two pages was created in the Procreate app and I used the GoodNotes app to draw productivity trackers.

August bullet journal, digital bullet journal, digital planner goodnotes, iPad planner

September spreads

For this cover page, I used the Procreate app and notice that instead of using dot paper, I’m using a graph paper. In a digital planner, you can easily change from dot paper to graph paper by pasting the new paper on top of the planner as an image.

The quote on the top right says:

“Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around.” ― Leo Buscaglia

September bullet journal, digital bullet journal, digital planner goodnotes, iPad planner
Click here to learn more about this layout.

This weekly spread inspired me to create this minimalist printable.

September weekly spread

October spreads
October calendar with a red theme.
Rose theme weekly spread

The quote at the bottom right says:

“Relationships are built in the silences. You spend time with people, you observe them and interact with them, and you come to know them—and that is what apartheid stole from us: time.” ― Trevor Noah, Born a Crime: Stories From a South African Childhood

October cover page with a gold and gray theme
Click here to learn more about this layout.
Halloween weekly spread with a mood tracker half moon on the right side of the page.

November spreads

The quote at the bottom right says:

“At some point we will all confront a dark moment in life. If not the passing of a loved one, then something else that crushes your spirit and leaves you wondering about your future. In that dark moment, reach deep inside yourself and be your very best.” ― William H. McRaven, Make Your Bed: Little Things That Can Change Your Life…And Maybe the World

November cover page withna calendar and worksout tracker.
Click here to learn more about this layout.
November weekly spread with colorful flower sin the middle of the page. The days of the week are written in black with a heart above the letter i.

December Spreads
Christmas weekly spread. There are Christmas lights falling from the top of the page.
Click here to learn more about this layout.
two page note book with a Christmas movie tracker on the left page and dream board on the right side.

I hope my digital planner inspired you to create and explore your creativity on your iPad. I will keep updating this blog post as I create new layouts. Join my Facebook group to learn about digital planning and bullet journaling. My readers from all over the world love share their planner setups and digital planner layouts. 

Thank you for stopping by! Check out my collection of FREE Bullet Journal Printables and digital planners & stickers.♡

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26 Comments

  1. Your digital bullet journal layouts are beautiful! I am using a paper bullet journal currently, but if I ever start using a digital bullet journal, I will know what post to come back and reread!
    – Pixie | Productive Pixie

  2. Hi Emma,

    I create the digital bullet journal as an open notebook first and then I import it into the Notability or GoodNotes app. Here is a tutorial to learn how to create a digital bullet journal:
    https://lifeismessyandbrilliant.com/how-to-make-a-digital-bullet-journal/

    I have a couple of tutorials here to learn how to add pictures and how to decorate the planner:
    https://lifeismessyandbrilliant.com/digital-planner-tutorials/

    Let me know if you have any questions 🙂

    – Jenniffer

  3. Hi, this is inspiring. How do you get / have the two page view of your journal pages? Is this something you designed a format on notability I just haven’t discovered yet?

  4. Hi Wade,

    The Apple Pencil is definitely longer than a regular pen, but it’s not heavy at all. Whenever I use the apple pencil to draw on the ipad or to practice hand lettering it feels like I’m using a regular pen. Digital planning on my iPad feels just like when I was writing on my bullet journal, the only difference is that I can have all my images and designs in one place.

    – Jenniffer

  5. I like what you set up here! I’ve been a fan of digital notes even though I’ve never taken time to actually stick with it. My life is strewn between scrap paper multiple notebooks and some digital notes in iPad iPhone surface pro. It’s a disaster. I’ve been looking at the iPad Pro w the pencil.

    It looks abnormally large the pencil that is. Or you have very small hands. I’m not afraid to learn to cope with writing on a screen but I want it to feel close to natural at least.
    I look forward to more videos!

  6. Hello! I am really LOVING your ideas. Thank you so much for sharing! What program are you using on the iPad for your digital bullet journal?

  7. When I import/add my bullet journal to an app on my iPad, I can just click on the numbers on my index page and it will take me to that page (instead of scrolling down to find that page). I create the hyperlinks in Adobe Acrobat Pro.

    I hope that answers you question 🙂

    – Jenniffer | Life is Messy and Brilliant

  8. Hi! I’ve had an iPad Pro for a while and I’ve been constantly looking for ways to use it to organize my life, and I think this might work! I have one question though…what do you mean when you said you made your index clickable with hyperlinks and how did you do it?

  9. Hi Anne,
    I have mine synchronized with my iPhone and iPad. You can totally have your bullet journal on your phone. I suggest you go to your phone’s app store and check out all the digital apps they have for notetaking. Try several apps to see which ones you like more 🙂

    Let me know how it turns out!

    – Jenniffer | Life is Messy and Brilliant

  10. I love this! Your bullet journal looks amazing! I started a paper bullet journal at the beginning of the year, but I have been having trouble using it because I often forget to bring it to class with me. A digital bullet journal would probably work better for me. Could I make one on my phone? I know the smaller screen size is not ideal but I do not own a tablet.

  11. This is so cool! This is the first digital bullet journal post I’ve read, and I love it! I personally prefer my pen and paper, but this is great if you prefer to do everything on your computer/tablet.

    | diaryofasouthernmillennial.com

  12. Going paperless is appealing. Wondering does it take long to set up? Something I would like to try and see if I enjoy using.

  13. Hi, Ted!

    Congratulations on your iPad purchase, it is one of the best investments you can make for yourself. ^^,

    1. At the beginning, it feels a little bit weird to write on the screen, but you get used to it. Remember that the apple pencil and the iPad’s screen are pressure sensitive. If you write with a lot of pressure your handwriting is going to look thick and messy. The awesome part about writing on the screen is that you can select your handwriting and make it bigger or smaller. The way your write on a regular paper is the same way you are going to write on the screen, practice your handwriting if you want it to look neat 🙂

    2. I save all my printables on Dropbox (I name all my folders to find everything easily), open the app on my iPad and select import. You can also use iCloud and/or Google drive. Depending on the app you use, the importing of the pdf might vary. Here is how I import my pdfs to Notability: https://goo.gl/jjlRTo

    3. You can create a whole pdf file or you can create separate pdf files in the app you choose as a bullet journal. Here is a preview of my journal: https://goo.gl/HLRL0y
    The one at the very bottom is the whole PDF file (about 17 pages) and I also have some of the pages as single PDFs.
    I personally use the app Notability, but I know some other people use GoodNotes. Play around with a lot of apps to get full advantage of the note-taking and drawing ability.

    Let me know if you have any more question! I’ll be more than happy to answer them 🙂

    Jenniffer | Life is Messy and Brilliant® ♡

  14. I absolutely LOVE this idea! I was just thinking about starting a digital bullet journal for my blog, but I didn’t know if it would be too difficult. You make it look so easy! I know you were using an ipad, but do you have any website suggestions for laptops?

  15. Hi Jenniffer. 🙂

    I just placed an order for an iPad Pro. I may get an Apple Pencil.

    My questions for you (if you have time to answer, please) 🙂
    1. Is it difficult to write with the pencil? I have always found my writing to look clunky and fat and huge. Do you find it fairly easy to write neatly and small?
    2. How do you import your printable into the iPad and then write on them?
    3. Do you create a “folder” as your journal? Or is it ONE file and then you just add pages to the file?

    Sorry if these are silly questions. Thanks for your patience! 🙂
    Ted

  16. Great idea, looks really good. Personally I still prefer the paper kind. I will see if I can get used to this one though, thanks for sharing.

  17. Hello! I was wondering if I could use a Samsung Tablet and how I would make a Digital Journal that way?

    Thank You
    Wendy