Getting back to writing in my journal each day! Re-creating the ritual of writing that has been missing as my life has shifted and changed. I spent a few weeks with some serious resistance! And now, I am settling back into the routine of writing.
Here are some thoughts on my work with journaling. I want to set the intention of bringing morning pages back into my daily practice. I am ready to capture the thoughts, feelings, dreams and ideas that are swirling around as the season changes again.
In my younger years, I used to write sporadically in my journals. At that time, I was keeping track of my emotions, where life was taking me, relationships, poetry…a real hodge-podge of thoughts. Then, that switched to journals about my children, day-to-day ups and downs of motherhood, and my relationship with my husband. It is now shifting again to thoughts of art and music, how things are integrated in the world and what is important to me in this next phase of my life.
I read Julia Cameron’s book The Artist’s Way a few years ago. This book totally changed my way of journal writing. I began to write 3 pages (stream of consciousness, Morning Pages) each morning and watched the journals begin to fill and fill and fill with so many thoughts, ideas and images. This writing was a simpler flow. Get- up in the morning and just write 3 pages. Since it was just upon awakening, the words poured out and still do. No pressure to put “perfect” ideas on the paper, just words that flowed out of my pen.
When I finished each journal, I would leave the last page blank. I would then reflect back on my writings. I would go back through each journal and “star” certain ideas that stood out to me as important. All of those starred ideas were written out on the very last page of each journal.
Wow! I now had topics from my life!
I began to use those starred ideas from the end of each journal to create blog posts, which then became the articles that you see in these e-newsletters.
The tool of Morning Pages keeps my journaling “light” when I need just a flow of words. It is motivating to me to just sit and write with no pressure to “produce” anything other than thoughts on a page.
Are there days I do not want to journal? Yep….lots of them. I honor that in my life. However, I can always go back and re-read what I have written.
I put journal writing into my morning routine daily. Do you?
Here are the steps so that you can try-out this process:
- Get a few blank journals, pens/pencils. Keep them in the spot you will go to, to write each morning.
- Upon waking up, open your journal and write 3 pages-stream of consciousness, no judging.
- Just before your journal is filled, leave the last page empty
- Re-read all of your entries and “star” the ideas and phrases that stand out to you
- Write all of those ideas and phrases in the back of your journal
- What do you notice?
Be prepared for thoughts and ideas to emerge that might be difficult and/or upsetting. This DOES happen and can make us uncomfortable. This is your journal, so no need for anyone but you to see it. However, these powerful insights will give you “clues” to your life. How will you interpret them?
You may want to use your “starred” ideas for articles and blog entries. You may learn new things about yourself that you had buried for a long time. You might discover beautiful connections that you had not noticed before. Whatever you discover, it will be connecting you to your own creative journey.