One of the most useful tools for me has been “Morning Pages”. Cameron urges people to write three pages in a stream of consciousness style upon waking up every morning.
There are a couple of rules. The most important is that your Morning Pages need to be handwritten – no computer please – as the hand/heart/unconscious mind connection is a powerful force. Also, they are personal. Don’t think of them as “writing” that you would show the world. The pages are a landing place for your ideas, to do list, whining, petty grudges – whatever is dancing in your head. Because they are personal and no one except you will see them, there is no judgment. Let it all come out. In fact the philosophy behind the MP is to dump all your brain clutter so you can move into a place of creativity and self-acceptance.
Morning Pages are for everyone. You don’t need to be an aspiring writer, artist, or anything else. You just need to do the work and see what happens.
Writing Morning Pages is a practice. It’s great if you can do it every day (in fact Cameron says that it’s nonnegotiable) particularly when you are developing the habit. And, like most positive practices, the more you do it, the better you feel. Notice that I did NOT say “the more you do it, the better you get” because there is no right or wrong and you’re not in it to win a writing award. You just want to write.
At my best I can write 5-6 times a week. But then life happens and I get out of the habit. The funny thing is that after a week or so without doing my pages, my mental clutter starts building up, and I feel edgy and uncomfortable. And then it dawns on me – I need to do my pages. So I pick up my pen and notebook and write. Every single time I do Morning Pages I feel better – and yet I’m continually astonished by their magic. The act of writing them makes me feel clear, centered, and full of gratitude.
For the price of a notebook, a pen, and fifteen minutes every morning, you can begin a practice that will bring you clarity, peace, a sense of accomplishment. And who knows where it will lead you creatively?
Not a bad investment.
To pick up a copy of Julia Cameron’s book: The Artists Way
And if you live in Los Angeles and are interested in a fabulous course on The Artists Way, I highly recommend Kelly Morgan.