What if you could do something in approx 15- 20 mins a day that would keep fresh ideas and creativity flowing? Would you do it?
I’ve taken up a practice called “morning pages”, which is a creative unblocking tool created by writing and creativity coach, Julia Cameron. One of the first things I try to do every morning is to grab my “morning pages” book beside my bed and write everything down that is swirling around in my head as I wake up.
The purpose of this is to clear all the “chatter “in my thought life. It’s a little like, “a vacuuming process. It pokes the pages into every corner of our current life and when we’re done with them our consciousness is clean and fresh and ready for new ideas”.
When we write things down we have to articulate and clarify our thoughts, and when we do this consistently there are several things that occur:
1. Clarity – We get clarity rather than a collection of jumbled anxious thoughts. We become more aware of what we actually feel, want and believe.
2. Daily checkup – It slows us down so that we are forced to “think about what we are thinking about” and to checkup on any negative or unhealthy emotions or habits forming.
3. Focus- In being more aware of all of our thoughts, we can de-clutter and gain focus about what is really important and what we are aiming to achieve.
4.Increased creativity– Creativity will begin to flourish and ideas flow because the “chatter” and blockages have been removed from our thoughts.
5. Dreams ignited – If we consistently engage in honest reflection and examination of our thoughts then our desires and dreams start to come to the surface and appear on the page right in front of us.
6. Less negativity, less complaining –When we complain in our Morning Pages we get it out. Complaining on the page helps us keep it there.
7. We’ll start taking action – The more we talk in our Morning Pages and focus our thoughts and vision, the more we’ll want to make it happen and take advantage of opportunities when they arise.
In our fast paced and stressful lives we can get very accomplished at squishing our passions, concerns and emotions under a mountain of work, practicalities, family commitments, and even fear of doing something different. However morning pages leaves no corner of life unexamined. Hidden feelings become known, hopes, concerns, appointments we keep putting off, friends we’ve lost contact with, spiritual hunger, trips we’d like to take, new ideas, promptings on relationships, and God speaking to us. It all eventually appears on those 3 little pages.
Writing down our morning thoughts reveals common themes or patterns arising and our hearts are revealed. “I wonder if I should take an art class, I wish I could do such in such, I’d love to visit that place, I need to catchup with that person, I wish I wasn’t so stressed, I should exercise it will help me feel better.”
We become more aware of ourselves, and in turn become more aware and comfortable with others. Why? Because when we are comfortable in our own skin, we are more comfortable under another’s scrutiny. As a result our relationships improve and we are healthier.
I’ve realised that we often know exactly what to do; we know deep down what we want in life, we can hear from God if we listen, and He is trying through all the noise to prompt, lead, and direct us into health, fitness, peace, whole relationships and blessing. In my morning pages God speaks loud and clear. I simply have to look at what I’ve written, follow promptings (especially when they are repeated), and be honest about my inner world.
Try it for yourself: First thing in the morning take a notebook (put one beside your bed with a pen) and write down for 3 pages everything that enters your thoughts. Every thought, write it down. God reveals the secrets of our hearts, but He often uses very simple means such as the daily practice of writing words on a page to bring us fresh revelation of who we are and who He is.
“I the LORD search the heart and examine the mind.” (Jeremiah 17:10)
“Search me, O God, and know my heart; Try me and know my anxious thoughts;” (Psalm 139:23)
Be blessed as you discover yourself and God afresh.
Prayer: Lord please help me to give time to decluttering my thought life and to be more aware of what is going on in my thought life. Then I can leave room for you to speak and to remind me of what’s really important in my life. In Jesus name Amen.