Morning Pages Can Become A Daily Routine

morning pages

Morning pages can easily become a part of your daily routine to clear your mind and order your thoughts for the day.

Morning pages appeared on my radar several years ago when I read The Artist’s Way, a book by Julia Cameron.

I had never heard of morning pages so I was more than curious. I discovered that morning ages are no more than three pages of longhand, stream of consciousness writing, done first thing in the morning. There is no wrong way to do morning pages; it’s not high art. In fact, it’s not even “writing”  as we know it. It’s more about anything and everything that enters your mind first thing in the morning – your dreams, fears, goals, etc.

Morning pages provoke, clarify, comfort, cajole, prioritize and synchronize our thoughts. You don’t need to overthink your monrning pages –  just white until you fill one page, then another and before you know it, you have written three pages !

Morning pages are based on the idea that first thing every morning you write three pages of streaming thoughts, whatever crosses your mind. You are simply creating a space for all the things that cross your mind.  This will help you discover and sort out what you are actually thinking – positive or negative thoughts.

Writing morning pages is a way to clear a path to creativity and introspection. By allowing your thoughts and dreams to reside on paper, you can clear your mind to deal with the unending things that will take up space in your mind throughout the day.

You may be thinking, “I don’t have time to write three pages every morning”,  “I don’t know what to write”, “I’m not a writer” or “I’m too busy…”

“Fill your paper with the breathings of your heart.” – Wilford Woodruff

You don’t have to be a prolific writer or have hours of extra time to write.

You only need to write.

In fact, after you’ve gotten in the habit of writing morning pages, it shouldn’t take more than 10-15 minutes out of your day.

Here are a few tips to get you started:

  • Before starting your day – Write!  The reason for this is so that you’re not distracted by daily happenings that interrupt your thoughts. If necessary, get up a little earlier than others in your household so that you have uninterrupted time to write. Once you start writing, keep writing. Don’t stop writing. Don’t allow the pen to leave the paper. If you can’t think of anything to write, then write, “I can’t think of anything to write” until something comes to mind.
  • Don’t quit or beat yourself up if you only write one or two pages or less the first time you try this or even if you skip a day of writing. If you can’t think of anything to write –  write your thoughts about the number of pages you want to write, then write that. Remember, you want your thoughts to guide what you put on paper. Continue writing every day until you can reach three pages each day.
  • As you write, don’t censor, correct, cross out or even pause to think – just write whatever thoughts enter your mind. Your thoughts are for your eyes only. You don’t have to share them with anyone else.
  • Include as little or as much detail as you want. Remember, these are your thoughts. Write whatever you want. You’re not writing the great American novel. Just keep writing.

Write what you know. Write what you want to know more about. Write what you’re afraid to write about. ~ Cec Murphy

Come back and share your morning pages writing experiences with us.

And, to get more tips and life enrichment, tools and resources that will renovate your relationships with partners, family members, co-workers and friends, I invite you to get my book, Master the Genie Within to renovate your relationships with partners, family members, co-workers and friends.

Gladys Anderson helps individuals and couples to renovate their relationships with partners, family members, friends and co-workers.

 

Couple Appreciation Month: Celebrate and Reinforce Your Relationship

Couple Appreciation Month: Celebrate and Reinforce Your RelationshipEvery year,  April is designated National Couple Appreciation Month to encourage couples to do something special to re-enforce and celebrate their relationship – to let their partners know that they are respected, desired and appreciated.

Given the grim statistics we hear on the state of relationships, I’m glad there is a whole month set aside to appreciate couples.

Statistics say most couples are unhappy in their relationships and more than 40% of marriages end in divorce.

As bleak as these statistics are, on the other hand, there are still approximately 50% of couples in relationships that are long lasting, thriving and happy.

What keeps these couples connected and happy?

Here are few tips from happy connected couples thar you can use to improve and strengthen your relationship:

  • Communicate. Communication is one of the most important qualities in a relationship. Expressing your feelings is the key to effective communication no matter how uncomfortable or awkward it may feel. In strong resilient relationships, couples say “I love you” often and don’t sweep unpleasant issues under the rug.
  • Date Night. Remember how you looked forward to going on a date with your partner before the bills, school functions, meetings, and other life forces took over and pushed your relationship to the back burner? You can regain that same excitement and joy in your relationship. Start going on dates again. Just as you schedule other functions, schedule a time devoted to each other. Make your relationship a priority. Take out your calendar or smartphone, select a mutually agreeable date and time and write in your partner’s name. Commit to this date and don’t use excuses to stand up your partner. I’m sure you’re super busy but you must have at least one night out of seven to devote to your partner.
  • Never go to bed angry. In any relationship, especially a couple, unresolved anger breed resentment. Long-term resentment leads to apathy and disconnection. Don’t give anger space to grow. Let the other person know how you feel without directing blame or criticism.
  • Play together. Most couples spend less than 20 minutes a day engaged with each other and even less having fun together. Make time in your schedule to do a fun activity you both enjoy. Couples who share a common interest such as golf or bowling tend to have less conflict in their relationship. Not only do these couples spend time having fun, they also are strengthening their connection.
  • Trust. Can you count on your partner tomorrow to do what he or she says? Successful relationships are built on trust. If you tell your partner you’ll be home by 6:30, don’t be persuaded to stop for a beer or get into a 20-minute conversation with co-workers when it’s time to leave work.
  • Fight fair. All couples have disagreements. If you’re not careful, disagreement can end in shouting matches, anger and hurt. A disagreement does not mean you don’t love each other or care. Before you start slinging insults, name calling or a disagreement ends badly, a 5-10 minute “time out” may help you sort out your thoughts so you can return and reach an amicable solution.
  • Show appreciation. Couples ought to show appreciation every day not just in April when we celebrate National Couple Appreciation Month. It’s the little things that mean a lot. It’s not that you don’t appreciate your partner; you just forget to verbalize your appreciation. Tell your partner how much you appreciate him or her. Put an “”I love you” note on a pillow, in a pocket, on the bathroom mirror, in his or her gym bag or briefcase/purse to make them smile.

Even though Couple Appreciation Month ended months ago,  any day is a good time to let your partner know how much more enjoyable he or she makes your life, and then tell him/her.

To get professional help to improve or strengthen your relationship, please contact me to schedule a consultation.

Show Kindness to Yourself

Show kindness to yourselfShow kindness to yourself even when you make a mistake, decision you regret or choices and experiences have you stuck, unmotivated and angry.

We all make mistakes.

If a friend made a mistake or choice that landed her in a shaky situation, how would you respond to her?

More than likely you would be there to support, encourage and uplift her.

So, why not extend the same courtesies and show kindness to yourself when you’ve made a choice that didn’t turn out the way you expected?

When you are beating yourself up with negative self talk, stop and use the following tips to show kindness to yourself:

1. Show kindness to yourself in the same way you would a friend who might be going through a rough patch
. Speak encouraging, empowering words, or perk yourself with a beautiful bouquet of flowers. Don’t fall into the “woe is me” trap of negative self talk like “I can’t…” “I’m too…” or “I’m not…”

2. Leave your mental comfort zone. When you’re feeling in a rut or unmotivated, focus on something different. If you think long enough about what isn’t possible, your thoughts will become a self-fulfilling prophecy.

3. Value your time. Time is a precious commodity and ought to be valued as such. Filling you time with negative self talk will add undue that stress to your life and is not a good way to spend your time. Instead, turn your attention to things that delight and inspire  you.

4. Forgive yourself. Blaming yourself for things that happened in the past will cause you to stay stuck in anger and unforgiveness. You are human and will make mistakes in judgment and engage in behaviors that you wish you hadn’t. Just as you would show kindness and forgive a friend for a minor transgression, forgive yourself.

5. Practice good self-care. When you practice good self-care, you are in a better position to ward off negativity, stress and anger. Set aside a portion of your day for “me time”.  Me time is uninterrupted time you spend meditating, relaxing to soothing music or just sitting with your feet up. Whatever you decide, make sure it’s a part of your daily routine to unwind and rejuvenate.

Keep the above tips in mind whenever you start to be too hard on yourself. Remember, you are your best friend! So show kindness to yourself by displaying the same nurturing, uplifting and positive support you would offer to a friend.

And, to learn even more about how you can show kindness to yourself, I invite you to get my latest book, Master the Genie Within: Uncover, Embrace and Celebrate the Real You.

Let Ego Go to Reveal the Real You

“Ego is simply an idea of who you are that you carry around with you” – Wayne Dyer

Let ego go to reveal the real you.

The Latin word for “I” is Ego and often used in English to mean “self”, “the self”, “self-concept”, “false self”, “conceptual identity”, or identification with individual existence or your soul.

Ego is also defined as the part of you that is your “innermost self”, “self-esteem” or “the opinion one has of him/her self.  These opinions can create a disparity between the real you and what you have been taught to believe about yourself.

Your ego feeds your desire to be accepted, acknowledged, loved, and valued born out of your connections with others – society, family and culture. While connections with others is important, it is equally important to connect with the real you rather than a distorted picture that may have been formed by outside influences.

Sometimes, your ego presents itself as a nagging, relentless voice that cast doubt, criticism and devalues your ideas, choices and dreams. I’ve given my ego a name. Her name is Negative Nelly and whenever she perches on my shoulder to whisper doubt, fear or limitation, I swiftly knock her off my shoulder and send her on her way.

When your “Negative Nelly” shows up trying to make you doubtful, fearful or unsure about the choices you make, these ego friendly principles will clear the cobwebs, empower you and reveal your true self:

  • Show courage – Courage is not the absence of fear. It is taking action despite fear. When faced with doubt and insecurities, resolve to be courageous and take the risk to do the thing that has you stuck in fear.
  • Know your values and priorities – Make choices based on what’s most important to you. Make sure you know your values and priorities and make your choices based on the principles that guide your life.
  • Have a Vision – Create a vision to pursue your dreams. Without a vision for your dreams, it will be difficult to achieve them. You must have a clear vision of what success is to you in order to work towards it.
  • Allow your intuition to lead you – Your intuition is that quiet gut feeling of certainty “rightness” that arises from deep inside you. When you listen to your intuition with greater alertness and awareness, you will be able to follow it more often and feel confident that it is guiding you in the right direction.
  • Fill Your wisdom cup – Wisdom and good judgment is not a measurable, quality. It is acquired over time from the accumulation of a variety of your life experiences. It is the cup you fill with life-long experiences. Learn to drink from it often and be open to filling your wisdom cup from a variety of sources.
  • Follow your dreams – No matter what challenges have come your way or what obstacles you’ve faced, you can still pursue your dreams. While your dreams may be dormant, they haven’t expired! Dreams don’t have an expiration date!.

The perception you have of yourself may be rooted in a false beliefs formed early in your life.  Your ego may be a blurry snapshot of the real you. However, you need not accept this distorted picture as your reality today.

If you are ready to get rid of your “Negative Nelly” and that “blurry” snapshot of who you really are, I encourage you to get my book, Master the Genie Within: Uncover, Embrace and Celebrate the Real You so you can get started right away to discover the real you.

Silent Agreements You Make With Yourself

An agreement is defined as  coming to a mutual arrangement, the state of being in accord or an arrangement that is accepted by all parties to a transaction.

There are many types of agreements that we enter into such as a legal contract, an agreement to provide a service or product or an agreement to give or do a favor for someone and then there are the silent agreements we make with ourselves.

Silent agreements rob you of your voice and power and often guide you into making decisions that are counterproductive to your true wishes.

Silent agreements are the unspoken rules and beliefs that you internalize about how, why and what things you allow to influence you.  These agreements are not legal or binding.  No one has forced, persuaded or cajoled you into making these agreements.

Some of the silent agreements that may hinder, limit or influence your life are:

  • Taking responsibility for everything and everyone in your life.  For example, when you take on more and more responsibility than is yours, you’ll find yourself   running on the hamster wheel until you wear yourself out.  Allow others to be responsible for the things that they are responsible for.
  • Staying stuck because of fear and doubt – Fear of being accepted, loved, validated or liked will show up in how you relate to the people in your life and the choices you make.
  • Pleasing everyone but yourself – When you are busy making sure that everyone is happy and getting along, how happy are you in that role?
  • Saying “yes” when you really want to say “no”.  Learning to say no and mean it is an empowering act that increases your confidence.
  • Using disparaging comments about yourself.

You may not be consciously aware that you’ve made these silent agreements with yourself.  But with a little digging, you can uncover these silent agreements, make new affirming agreements and be on your way to revealing your true self.

Here are a few suggestions to get you started:

  1. Take responsibility for only those things you have absolute control of.
  2. Use affirmations, positive self-talk to overcome fear and self-doubt.
  3. Learn to use no as a complete sentence without explanation when saying yes infringes unduly on your time, energy and desires.
  4. Make sure your needs register on the priority scale.  Carve out some “self-care” time to replenish your energy and clear your mind of clutter.
  5. Use empowering words like, “I choose” instead of “I have to” so that you are expressing clearly what you want, can do and are willing to accept.

Our silent agreements only serve to deceive others and us as we hide our true selves.

To learn more about how silent agreements influence your daily life and to uncover your true self, I encourage you to start by getting my book, Master the Genie Within where you will gain more insight, tools and resources to help you on your journey.