My 3-year-old niece is annoying.
When she is alone with me, she shows some cool dance moves. Cool for a 3-year-old, at least. She does a free-flowing dance without any care in the world. No worry, no inhibitions.
But when guests arrive
It’s a different scenario altogether. When people are around, the ego takes over. The free-flowing dance ceases to flow. Now she is conscious.
When we write, our mind is conscious too
As we open our laptops and stare at the blank Google document, we feel crippled. It’s like walking a tightrope. There is this tremendous pressure to produce something meaningful. This pressure prevents us from getting into the ‘free-flowing dance’.
With this huge pressure on their backs, how are Marketers, Creators, and Entrepreneurs, expected to come up with good ideas consistently? How can we write blog posts, articles, and emails?
Clearly, we need a process.
Morning Pages is that process
Morning Pages, originally introduced by Julia Cameron, is a process that helps writers break through mental blocks and blesses them with creative ideas. It’s a method… so simple and easy, yet it has been a game-changer for me and countless others.
It’s like dancing when no one is watching
With morning pages, there is no right or wrong. There is no misstep.
‘Morning pages’ remove all inhibitions and mental blocks and takes us from a state of ‘Feeling too Conscious’ to a state of Flow.
How it works?
All you need is a pen & paper. Or you could do it digitally on your laptop. I prefer the digital version.
The process is quite simple –
1. Set a timer of 17 minutes (A number I just made up. But, you could go longer.)
2. Start typing (or writing)
3. Don’t stop till the timer runs out.
Just keep writing. Whatever the thoughts are. Regardless of their quality. As I said, there is no right or wrong. The only wrong thing to do here would be to stop writing and thinking to yourself, “Hmmm… what should I write?”
When you have no clue what to write, you can write – “I have no clue what to write.” If it helps, you can also write – “Pranav is so stupid.” That is completely fine by me. Just please don’t tell me, and protect my fragile ego.
How do Morning Pages get you creative ideas?
When we write Morning Pages, slowly, the ego drops, and we get into a state of flow. When self-doubts disappear, ideas start flowing.
We are longer attached to perfection. The quality of writing is no longer a concern. The quantity is. We keep on writing. Most of it will be rubbish. Meaningless.
And then it happens. Rarely. But it does.
It’s like getting hit by a truck. A good truck, of course. Our eyes widen, and our heart rate quickens a little bit. We know we have stumbled on something. An idea worth pursuing. It’s like the brain has dumped all the useless stuff, and finally, a good idea is coming out.
Here’s a screenshot of my morning pages
Obviously, I chose a screenshot that was the least personal and embarrassing. This is to give an example, though. You should not make your morning pages public.
Morning Pages will always give you ideas
No, that’s not true. This is a dangerous assumption. An attachment that completely defeats the purpose of this process. It’s quite possible… in fact, probable, that in many of your morning pages sessions, no ideas will emerge. The more you force yourself to produce creative ideas, the farther the ideas will run away from you.
Detachment is the key. Just do the work without expectations.
Morning Pages – The key to breaking through mental blocks
Morning pages help you break through mental blocks. All you need is a pen and paper (or a laptop). The key here is to write and write so that the ego falls off. And eventually, good ideas start flowing. Many times, they don’t. And that’s okay.
Just ask my niece. Most of her dance moves are silly. But she does them anyway.