Have I told you how morning pages changed my life? It’s one daily activity that has lessened my anxiety and kept me writing, even when I don’t really feel like it.

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How Morning Pages Changed My Life | There are so many benefits to free writing, and many of these benefits are how morning pages changed my life. In this post, I'm sharing the changes I've noticed in my life since I adopted a morning pages practice.

Original photo by Markus Spiske 

I mentioned morning pages a couple weeks ago when I talked about how you can incorporate a daily writing practice into your life. And at that point, I had just started. But I’m almost two months in and I have to say that it’s made a big difference in my daily life.

For those who aren’t familiar, morning pages come from the book, The Artist’s Way by Julia Cameron. It’s a practice of writing three pages every single morning. And what you write is up to you. You just want to keep the pen moving on the page.

I’m also sharing some tips for how to do morning pages on YouTube today, so make sure you check it out.

So, before we get too far into this blog post, know that I’m not going to talk about any research associated with morning pages. In fact, this is all going to be anecdotal. And while that might not be very scientific, this blog is named after me. So it would only make sense to tell you how this activity is making me feel.

With that, let’s get into it.

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How Morning Pages Changed My Life

Morning pages clear your head.

Every morning I wake up with the fuzz of a full night’s sleep in my head and a weird pull to get moving. I wouldn’t say it’s motivation. It’s mostly a little thing in my head that’s like “THERE IS SO MUCH TO DO TODAY SO YOU BETTER GET AFTER IT.” I wish I could wake up and just move as slowly as I pleased, but I can’t. Though, morning pages are changing that.

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I sit down with some water, coffee, and a notebook, and I write down all the things swimming in my head. I do it free writing style, so whatever comes to my head is what goes down on the page. And as I look back on it, it’s kind of funny that it’s mostly a list of things that I need to do on that particular day. But it also talks about how good I’ll feel once I get something off my plate. And when I’m done writing, that little thing in my head that tells me to get going is pretty quiet because I’ve cleared it out, and I can actually get to work.

It’s a daily writing habit.

I’m big on the writing habit. I don’t think you have to write fiction every day, but I do advocate for writing in some form every day. It keeps your brain spry and keeps the connection between your thoughts and a blank page fresh. But it can be hard to make yourself write every day if you don’t have a specific practice chosen to be the writing you do every single day.

I’ve gotten to the point where the first thing I do is wake up, chug water, make coffee, and then head to the couch to do my morning pages. (This is problematic in that I’m not sure where I’m going to put working out anymore, but I’ll figure it out.) But I’ve gotten into the habit, and on a normal day, I get some writing done first thing.

I start my day with writing.

There’s something about using your brain in a very specific way first thing in the morning that makes the rest of your day go more smoothly. For me, morning pages are a full-on act of self-care, and doing them really makes me feel a lot better first thing. And it’s really glorious in that I get to do that self-care with writing. But more than that, I get some words in first thing. So, even if I don’t get any other writing done throughout the day, at least I started my day as a writer.

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I suppose the argument could be made that if I didn’t spend time writing morning pages first thing that I would be better off and have more time for other types of writing later on. But let me underscore the self-care part. It’s a really important part of my day, and I like doing it. It’s good to start your day with a self-care activity that is the reason you were put on this planet.

I get my anxiety out first thing.

Okay. So. I mentioned that morning pages are an act of self-care for me, and how these morning pages clear my head. But the big takeaway here is that I get my anxiety out first thing. I sit down. I think about what’s in my head, and then I just get it all out of the way. It’s a glorious feeling to process the anxiety in your head and work through it.

And by doing it first thing in the morning, I’m able to process what’s on my mind and start the day in a calmer space. I can’t say that anxiety doesn’t pop up later, but it does make it harder to come back. (Though, admittedly, it’s tax season and I’m a mess during that time because I think all freelancers are a mess during that time.) But if my anxiety does come back later in the day, it’s usually lessened considerably because it isn’t building on top of unprocessed anxiety from earlier on.

I think better in writing.

Some people are internal processors. Some are speakers. And some people need to write to get their ideas out in a cohesive way. I’m a writer, so it makes sense that I generally don’t know what I think on a topic until I’ve written it all out. And if I can write about the dreams I had while I was asleep, or the things on my to do list that are stressing me out, it gets a lot easier to process them.

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If you were to thumb through my morning pages, you’d see where I worked through some things that were making me anxious. You’d see where I tackled the meaning behind some dreams. (Turns out my dream where dueling Deadpools burned up a hockey arena was meaningless.) And you’d see where I processed different things about the day before that had been bugging me, but I didn’t know why. And making the space to write about these things each day is what makes it possible.

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Have Morning Pages Changed Your Life?

Do you like to free write in the mornings? Do you like to process your life in writing? Are you a journaler? What kind of writing do you make sure you do daily? Let me know in the comments!

4 Responses

    1. I think you’ll love it, especially if you’re into artist processes. I love seeing how other people approach their work and getting in the right mindset to complete it.

    1. I had this same conversation with myself the other day. I used to do them, then stopped, and realized how beneficial they were when I started back up again.

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