As of today, I’m starting this thing called The Morning Pages. You may have heard of them. If you haven’t, Here, Here, and Here are a few links to get you started. They’ve been floating around a while. I’ve actually considered doing this for over a year, but I never really set time aside for it.
This year, however, one of my resolutions was to do writing practice each morning. That didn’t work out. I hated writing with prompts. Yes, I want to hone my craft. No, I didn’t feel they helped me do it. Writing something on a vague topic for fifteen minutes left me more frustrated, mostly because very few of my ideas fit into a fifteen minute blurb.
On my quest to find an alternate writing practice, I stumbled across the Morning Pages again. Granted, Morning Pages have very little in common with writing prompts. In fact, the only thing they have in common is that they are approximately the same length (though Morning Pages appear to take longer). The reason I decided to replace my former goal with this one is because I realized that, at the end of the day, Morning Pages could be considerably more useful to me, given the extreme amount of stress I am usually under.
So I’m going to do an experiment with the Morning Pages to see if they are helpful to me or not. I will write my Morning Pages in the morning, as soon as I wake, for one week (starting today). Then I will write my Morning Pages as soon as I get off work, again, for one week. At the end, I will evaluate which, if either, was most helpful to me, and blog about it.
I wrote them this morning, and the results were fairly satisfying. I’m still extremely stressed (having spent two and a half hours working the bills), but I did enjoy a brief reprieve from it all while writing. It was a rather relaxing way to wake. Not only that, I actually woke up. Normally it takes me a half an hour to snap out of sleep, or lack thereof. Today, I woke up smoothly as I jotted down random thoughts.
That being said, I think reading would do basically the same thing for me. I used to wake up instantly when I started reading a book. Then I got too lazy, or maybe stressed, to do anything but sit there and work at problems that had no solutions. Since I intend to read either as soon as I get off work or as soon as I wake (depending on which Morning Pages routine sticks), I will be able to discover which does better at what by the end of the month.
*Note* A writing buddy of mine will also be experimenting and blogging when the two weeks ends. I believe she intends to write them in the late evening, as she sleeps last most days. Feel free to check out her blog on the subject as well.