Back when I started my blogging journey (in 2008), I had been reading and working through a book called The Artist’s Way (if you haven’t read it, I highly recommend; it’s by Julia Cameron). The book is about creative recovery and how to reignite your creative fire when you haven’t been creative for a while.
For me, it was exactly what I’d needed, as I had just come off three full years of not writing anything.
In the book, Cameron gives a set of tools she recommends using daily and weekly. The weekly tool is the Artist Date (you can read more about that one at www.juliacameronlive.com). The daily tool is Morning Pages.
Morning Pages, if you haven’t heard of them, are three hand-written, stream-of-consciousness pages that you write every morning, first thing upon waking, before you do anything else. There are no rules; you can write about anything, whatever crosses your mind; and you don’t ever have to worry about showing these pages to anyone (or even going back to re-read them, I never do and Cameron doesn’t recommend it).
Once your three pages are written you’re done and you go about your day. The next morning, you wake up and do it again. Repeat.
I started doing Morning Pages in 2008 while reading the Artist’s Way. I enjoyed them, but I wasn’t super consistent about it. I would do them for a few months and then I’d take a couple of weeks off and then I’d get back to it for half a year and fall off again.
But I always went back.
There was just something about it. When I’m doing my Morning Pages, I’m more positive, happier, clearer. I get better ideas. I have fewer negative thoughts and emotions. Life just improves.
And that’s because these pages are not just mindless journaling. They’re a way to clear out the clutter and remove the BS negativity and fear and worry and doubt and all the things that get in the way of you being the brilliant creative being you truly are.
In 2010, I did an experiment–I committed to doing my Morning Pages every day for 2 full weeks and tracking what happened and how I felt (you can read the results of that experiment here: www.jenniferblanchard.net/morning-pages-two-weeks/).
What I discovered was that life was just better and, most importantly, I felt better and I operated better and thought better and had more clarity.
That experiment converted me to a Morning Page person. I committed to it and that was that. It became a habit almost instantly.
Every morning I would get up 10-15 minutes earlier than I usually would, I’d go into my bedroom closet (it was a huge walk-in inside my bathroom), sit on the floor and do my Morning Pages.
Then I would go about my day. I did this for years of my life.
I never go back and read my Pages. For me, they’re a way to release toxic thoughts and stories and complaints and BS and I have no interest in revisiting any of it. Once in a while, if I get a Divine Download while I’m writing them (as I often do these days), I’ll make note of it in my phone after.
These days, I don’t do three pages. My commitment is that I do at least one, but I allow myself to write as much as I need to, so sometimes it’s more, but typically I keep it to a page.
I’ve stopped for short periods of time all through the years, but I find that when I’m doing my Pages, my life just works better and so do I.
For the past couple of months, I’ve been in a “funk” and wasn’t sure why (I wrote about this in my post from yesterday). So I decided to return to my go-to tool and the one I know always pulls me through.
I started writing my Pages again (still mostly doing one page a day) and things quickly started to shift. I got clarity on things I was struggling with for weeks. And I started feeling a whole lot better.
If there’s anything I’d recommend for almost instantly improving your mood, your life and your feel-good, it’s Morning Pages.
And if you’re a writer, this is a mandatory tool, in my opinion.
There’s so much junk that blocks your creative juices from flowing, including (but not limited to) stress, negative thoughts, life chaos, BS stories and limiting beliefs, etc. Morning Pages are a way to clear that junk and that clutter and that negativity on a daily basis, so it doesn’t follow you into your day or block you from the inspiration and ideas you desire to receive.
Whether you’ve tried Morning Pages or not, now’s a great time to get to it.
Find a notebook and pen, put it by your bed, then tomorrow morning, grab it, do your Pages and go about your day (repeat daily for best results). Report back.
Dream life or bust,