GRATITUDE FOR MORNING PAGES
By: Dion Flynn
“Let it flow, let yourself go.” The Beastie Boys, Slow And Low 1986
Today I want to express gratitude for Julia Cameron. Her book, The Artist’s Way, changed my life.
Back in 1998 Julia Cameron’s book told me to write three pages every morning. Her instruction ran along these lines: Write whatever comes out. Don’t stop. Don’t judge. Let it flow. No matter how crazy, judgmental, angry, sad or petty. Just write. Write. Write. Write. Write. Write. Write.
By the bottom of the first page I was in tears. There was something here. Something to this “morning pages” thing. By the bottom of the first page I was in my mother’s bedroom writing about how depressing a place it had been for her and (unknown to me at the time) I was exploring my own feelings of sadness about both of our habits of isolating.
I’ve continued with the three morning pages these 18 years. When my wife and I moved in together I decluttered 65% of my earthly possessions and out went 200 journals full of mental purges.
I wake up most mornings afraid because the mind has taken over (again) overnight and started running its mental imagery and problem-making/problem-solving software again. This tangle of mental wire needs to be dumped. On the rare day that I miss my writing, my mental state is not nearly the same. There is a clarity and a stillness that come which I cannot live without.
I am a creative person. I write. I act. I speak in front of people. All of these things require clarity. When I write, it’s like taking out the garbage and when the garbage is out of my head, I’m able to see things I wasn’t able to see before. I’m able to hear new guidance (in my meditation which follows) that would have been lost amongst the warring torrents of thought. Once I export the torrent to the page, its spell is broken. There is a distance created. I see the thought stream for what it is: an endless stream that is separate from my being.
This spaciousness allows me to create. Creativity then channels through me into this newly-created space. A space which I consciously cultivate each morning by doing what Julia Cameron’s book told me to do almost two decades ago: to let is flow, let yourSELF go.