“The bedrock tool of a creative recovery is a daily practice called Morning Pages.”
– Juila Cameron
- Are you struggling to spark your creativity?
- Come up with better ideas?
- Staying productive?
- Or perhaps your battling anxiety or limiting beliefs about yourself?
Journaling early in the morning has personally helped me with all of the above.
Side note: If you want to learn how to start a journal (that is not specific to Morning Pages) you can read my How-To guide for journaling right here.
One day, a little over a year ago and after the usual YouTube binge, I came across something called Morning Pages – a habit that I can now not be without.
Implementing Morning Pages into my morning routine has truly changed my life.
In this article, I’ll spill the beans on this magnificent way of journaling in the hope that it will improve your life as it has mine.
If you’re curious about what morning pages are, been curious about the concept, or want to learn more about it, you’ve come to the right place.
Everything you need to know about Morning Pages is coming up.
What Are Morning Pages?
Morning Pages is a technique taught by author and screenwriter, Julia Cameron.
It has become one of the most popular concepts shared in her book, The Artist Way.
It was initially designed to help artists and writers get out of their writer’s block rut and into a space of creativity.
However, Morning Pages is a model and a tool that is becoming more and more popular within the creative world but also when it comes to people in business.
It’s a way of unraveling creativity, going from a negative space to a positive one.
To be honest, it took me a while to get started with my Morning Pages.
I’d been reading a lot about it and I was intrigued, but I just couldn’t for the life of me make myself sit down every single morning to write by hand.
Eventually, I caved in and started doing my Morning Pages daily – a routine that has improved my life in so many ways.
How Do Morning Pages Work
The idea behind Morning Pages is to fill 3 whole pages with a stream of consciousness writing, every single morning.
You transcribe your thoughts and whatever else is going on in your brain.
Get out all your thoughts onto the piece of paper.
You can essentially write about anything you want.
Please note that it doesn’t have to be or look perfect.
Morning Pages are the opposite of a neatly and perfectly designed bullet journal.
Do not edit, overthink or be judgemental of whatever comes out.
You go completely unconscious and let your thoughts flow freely.
Keep the pen moving until you have filled your 3 pages.
Fill Your Pages
You must complete your 3 pages, don’t go short on me and don’t give up when you feel like you don’t have anything left to say.
If you feel like you’re running out of things to say and struggling to fill your 3 pages worth of words, you can literally write “I have no idea what to write” – or something of that nature.
You’ll find that if you just keep moving your pen and sprinkle down your thoughts, new thoughts will appear – thoughts that you may have been suppressing or even creative ideas that you can spin off on after your Morning Pages session.
Morning Pages will reveal everything.
It’s pure meditation and so powerful for personal growth.
Not Just For Artists
Even if you’re not an artist, a writer or poet – it doesn’t matter – Morning Pages are for everybody.
The wonderful thing about Morning Pages is that you can do no wrong.
There is room for so much error – in fact, that is the whole point.
Writing By Hand
Don’t go digital on me, girl.
I know we love our MacBooks and our digital life so much, but for Morning Pages purposes – please stick to pen and paper.
When you get your unconscious thoughts on paper, you are literally separating your thoughts from your mind.
And there is just something about writing things down that makes it all very real and much more therapeutic.
Once you get started with writing out your Morning Pages by hand, you’ll eventually get used to it and it will become easier.
Write by hand, stay old school.
Supplies For Morning Pages
You don’t need a lot of supplies for getting started with Morning Pages.
All you need is an empty notebook and your favorite pen.
You are good to go, no purchases necessary.
However, if you wish to spruce things up you can, of course, do so.
Your Secret Safe Space
“There is no wrong way to do Morning Pages – they are not high art. They are not even ‘writing. They are about anything and everything that crosses your mind– and they are for your eyes only.” – Julia Cameron
Morning Pages are intended to be private.
They are your secret safe space.
Do not share your writing with anyone – not even your spouse, best friend or dog.
Keeping it close to your heart will unlock thought boundaries and boost the honesty and authenticity of your writing.
It needs to be 100% unfiltered.
Your Morning Pages are not meant to be read by anyone else, its purpose is just to be written.
For your eyes only.
How To Make Time For Morning Pages
Change up your morning routine and leave room for your writing.
Turn your Morning Pages routine into a habit.
Do it even on days when you don’t feel like it.
Wake up 30 minutes earlier than usual.
That is the best and only way to make time for your journaling.
Tip: Schedule your Morning Pages ritual on your calendar and add reminders so you won’t forget.
The Benefits Of Morning Pages
The benefits of Morning Pages are endless.
Here are a few of my favorites:
- Less anxiety
- Awareness and self-reflection
- Increased productivity
- Sparks creativity and inspiration
- Unlock new ideas
- Shifting from a negative to a positive mindset
“When people ask, ‘Why do we write morning pages?’ I joke, ‘To get to the other side.’ They think I am kidding, but I’m not. Morning pages do get us to the other side: the other side of our fear, our negativity, of our moods.” – Julia Cameron
Examples Of Morning Pages Prompts
If you’re completely new to writing your Morning Pages, it can be quite handy to use a few prompts to get you started.
Once you start writing you will find that it becomes much easier to pour your heart out on paper.
Here are some examples of topics you can start writing about:
- How was your day yesterday?
- What did you achieve?
- What went well?
- What didn’t go exactly as planned?
- What do you have on your agenda for today?
- To-do’s and things you have to take care of
- What are you grateful for this morning?
- Write about 3 amazing things that have happened lately
- Anxious thoughts
- What are you worried about?
- Any issues?
- List your limiting beliefs
- Your dreams and goals
- How will you take action on your dreams today?
- Layout the action plan for achieving your goals
- Literally, write about a dream you had
Can I Do Morning Pages At Night?
Journaling can, of course, be done at any time you wish, but the Morning Pages are specifically intended to be done in the morning, hence the name.
You’ll have more clarity and our creative peak tends to be in the morning.
Plus, it’s much better to “get it out of the way” first thing than to leave it for when your day ends.
Things come up, your schedule changes, you’ll be tired and it’s easier to forget.
I recommend you do your Morning Pages in the morning.
A Few Tips To Get You Started With Morning Pages
- Read The Artist Way by Julia Cameron
- Get up 30 minutes earlier
- Avoid looking at your phone, news, Netflix, or going online before you do your Morning Pages. Your mind should be completely fresh, clear and avoid any unnecessary distractions beforehand
- Sit outside and get some fresh air
- Buy a good pen that you’ll want to write with
- Listen to peaceful or ambient music
- My favorite notebooks for Morning Pages
How Morning Pages Have Changed My Life
I started writing Morning Pages a little over a year ago.
It’s helped me in so many ways.
Morning Pages have helped lay the groundwork for turning my daydreams into action plans.
The ritual continues to inspire me daily and I find myself coming up with so many creative ideas for both my personal life and my business.
I used to struggle a lot with procrastination, but Morning Pages have helped me get out of my procrastination spiral and into a much more productive one.
I am more focused and it’s one of the main things that have helped me to get unstuck in life.
Above all, I am happier.
It’s truly a lifehack for your mind.
Before You Go
Now, I can’t wait to see what Morning Pages can do for you.
Perhaps you already do them? Let me know in the comments below.
You can listen to The Artist Way audiobook on Audible for free if you sign up for their free trial.
That’s what I did, I learn better by listening.
What a great and informative post, thanks Mia!
You’re so welcome Ree! 🙂
I love the idea of Morning Pages! As someone who writes for a living, and tends to spend most of my time doing so digitally, getting out a pen and putting some handwritten thoughts on paper sounds like a great way to start the day.
It might even be a fun way to incorporate cursive or hand lettering practice! Words can be pretty, even if they aren’t necessarily profound!
Yes! So true. Thanks for reading Emily!