Morning Pages: 3 Reasons Why You Should Journal In The Morning
Have you ever thought about journaling in the morning to start your day off on a positive note?
I know that as a caregiver, it can be difficult to find the time for self-care activities but imagine beginning your day in the right frame of mind knowing that you’re equipped to tackle whatever goals you’ve set for yourself.
It’s possible when you journal in the morning. Morning journaling can help you manage your stress before your stress manages you. Read on to find some benefits to journaling in the morning and how to do a type of journaling called morning pages.
Start Your Day on a Positive Note
How you spend your morning often sets the tone for the rest of your day. So why not be intentional with your morning practice? Set out each day to write in the morning to get a jumpstart on your day and infuse it with positivity.
By cultivating an attitude of gratitude. If you use the morning to write in your gratitude journal, you’ll carry that grateful spirit throughout the rest of your day. Besides writing down what you’re grateful for and why, consider visualizing and writing down a few future things that you can be grateful for. It can be about your relationship with those you’re caring for or how you see yourself advancing at work. Anything that puts you in a good frame of mind is just fine.
Set Your Intentions
Your journal is the perfect place to write about your goals and intentions. And the morning is the perfect time to do so. It helps you to solidify your goals for the day and put them in the forefront of your mind. As you progress through your day, your subconscious will focus on finding opportunities that support your intentions.
Focusing on your goals also means that you’ll also be more aware of the steps that are required to bring your goals to fruition. Which will help you take actions that are in line with those objectives. By focusing on your goals each day, you’ll also be more productive.
One of the best benefits of journaling is that it helps you reduce mental clutter. You can get rid of the excess thoughts pinging around in your head when you write them down in your journal. This is sometimes called a brain dump. Doing this is helpful because you don’t want to start your day feeling stressed and overwhelmed with anxious thoughts.
A best practice would be to journal daily, but if you can’t yet, when you’re feeling overwhelmed in the morning, take 3- 5 minutes to get it all out on paper. This will free up your brain power and energy to handle the important tasks at hand as they arise throughout your busy day.
Now that we’ve looked at some of the benefits you can receive from journaling in the morning, lets look at a specific journaling technique called Morning Pages.
Morning Pages is a concept that was introduced in 1992’s The Artist’s Way by author Julia Cameron. The basic idea behind this practice is to write by hand three full pages of prose every morning when you first wake up. It’s a journaling practice that offers many benefits and has become popular among various types of people, not just artists.
How To Write Morning Pages
The trick to Morning Pages is that you must write them by hand, not using an electronic device, and you need to fill three full letter-size pages. The last requirement is that you write them first thing when you wake up to receive the most benefit.
Doing this allows you to approach your journaling with a fresh mind, before your mind allows self-doubt or limiting beliefs creep in.
There are no other rules to Morning Pages. You can write whatever and however you want. Because the point is to fill your pages with a stream of consciousness. Which means write anything and everything that comes to your mind. There’s no need to overthink them or worry about the writing you produce. Your writing is for you and you alone.
Benefits of Morning Pages
Of course, as with anything else, you achieve the most benefits from making Morning Pages a regular habit. One thing you’ll notice is that your mind will seem less cluttered, and your focus will improve. It helps to get all your racing thoughts out of your brain and onto the page.
Another benefit of Morning Pages is that it gives you a creative outlet. Once you start, your momentum will increase, and you’ll start to notice a creative boost throughout your pursuits.
Of course, the best way to achieve the full benefits of your Morning Pages is the make sure that you review them periodically. Consider taking time at least once a week to review what you’ve written. You never know, reviewing your morning pages might help you gain perspective on a problem you’ve been dealing with or ignite an idea that sets you on a new path.
Fitting In Morning Pages
Now for those of you (like myself) who don’t consider yourself morning people, you might think you don’t have time for Morning Pages. But if you give it a shot, you’ll be surprised how easy it is to sneak a few minutes into the start of your day.
The key is finding a way to fit this new habit into your already-existing routine. The most obvious way is waking up a half hour earlier so you get a jumpstart on your day. You’ll really be able to concentrate on your writing when the rest of the world is asleep.
Or maybe you’re someone who enjoys taking a bath in the morning. You could try to write in your journal while soaking.
Or you can start your Morning Pages while making your morning coffee or tea. Think about your routine and decide what would work best for your lifestyle.
Give Morning Pages a try and see if it’s a practice that works for you. It’s not that difficult to fit into your existing routine, and the benefits are well worth the effort.
How do you think that you might benefit from journaling in the morning? Let me know in the comments section.
Cassandra Martin-Himmons, LMSW is a stress management coach and content creator who believes in empowering her clients to help them manage their stress and increase their self-care. In her spare time she enjoys papercrafting, hand embroidery and travel. Connect with her on FaceBook, Instagram or YouTube.