Morning pages have been a creative game changer for me. It’s a simple practice of writing out whatever is on your mind first thing in the morning, with pen on paper. There’s much more to it, but essentially it’s as simple as that. You can literally start writing morning pages with just that information. If you want, you can read Julia Cameron’s book The Artist’s Way, where she shared this creative morning routine or you can just make them part of your own writing habit. Morning pages prompts can help you jumpstart your creativity, but before we get to that, let’s first cover the basics:
How to do morning pages correctly
- Write by hand (don’t type)
- Write 3 pages (or set a timer, personally I do 10 minutes) on a daily basis
- Write whatever comes to your mind. Keep your pen moving nonstop, even if what you write is just “I don’t know what I should write about, I really don’t know what to write about, and I still don’t, but I’m just going to keep writing because this is what I committed to”
- Don’t edit or overthink. Just put the words on paper. No one will ever read them, probably not even you yourself
Morning pages prompts
Here are a few prompts to get you started you can use on in your daily writing:
- I’m grateful for…
- The last dream I remember was about…
- I’m worried about…
- I’m looking forward to…
- I feel upset about…
- I have an idea about…
- I was reading about…
- A problem I’m pondering is… and the possible solutions I’m thinking about are …, …, and ….
- How can I push myself beyond my current creative boundaries?
- I feel stressed about …
- Yesterday I listened to a song and there was a moment that resonated strongly with me when the singer sang the words …
- When I feel creatively stuck, what’s one way I can do to get back in the groove?
- What should I remind myself of the next time I don’t feel like creating my art?
- What’s one new technique I can try to stay motivated?
- Right now these are the physical sensations that I experience in different parts of my body. My chest feels …, my shoulders feel…, etc
- Right now, these are the emotions I feel: …
- When I’m looking up from my paper, this is what I see: …
- Here’s one thing I’m struggling to fully accept: …
- Here’s one thing I want to let go of: …
- How can I evaluate the quality of my own art better?
- With whom can I share one piece of my art today for the first time?
- What’s one new way for me to expose my art to the world?
- Here’s one thing I’ve recently learned: …
- Here’s one thing I like about myself: …
- Here’s one thing I dislike about myself: …
- Why do I create my art? Where does my inspiration stem from?
- What are some of the most difficult moments I’ve faced in my creative journey?
- Here’s one thing that’s so uninteresting that I would never write about it, if it weren’t for these morning pages: …
- What’s one thing I’ve been putting off for too long already? What would happen if I kept putting it off even longer?
- What sets my work apart from other artists’ work, makes it unique and special?
- Here’s everything that I can think of I did yesterday: …
- This [pick a random object in front of you] reminds me of … because …
- If I would create a fictional character that was exactly like me but had one superpower, it would be …, because …
- How can I use color to express thought?
- What does yellow mean to me?
- What’s the most important thing I want to accomplish today?
- What would make today special?
- What’s one emotion I want to convey through my art?
- How can I treat myself a little bit better in one way today than I did yesterday?
- What’s one thing I want to do differently today?
- What would I do with an extra hour in my day?
- How can I best use my creative time today?
- How can I use a plan or schedule to work more creatively?
- How can I tweak my creative routine to level up as an artist?
- What aspect of artistic self-care have I neglected?
- What’s one way to express myself creatively today?
- What’s one little act of kindness I could do today?
- What’s one little random act of kindness someone has extended to me?
- How does my art fuel my personal growth?
- What’s one dull thing that I can infuse with more meaning today?
- What’s a thing that I typically do absentmindedly that I will do mindfully today?
- What’s one thing I can do to improve my mental health today?
- What’s the most important thing I’ve learned from my favorite artist?
- What’s one thing I can do at the end of the day to nurture my creativity?
- What’s one fun thing I can do today that I haven’t done in a long time?
- What’s one new skill I want to master?
- How can I have more fun with my to-do list?
- What’s one thing I can do to ground myself next time I feel overwhelmed?
- How can I challenge myself today in a new way?
- How can I connect with nature today in a way I usually don’t?
- What would today look like if I were living the life of my dreams?
- If I had a one-time-use magic wand, what would be the one thing I would change about the world?
- If I could have dinner with anyone in the world, who would I choose?
- What words of affirmation does my creative spirit need to hear today?
- How can I show myself more compassion in my daily routine?
- What was my most important moment of self-discovery I’ve had in the past 5 years?
- What are some new materials I want to experiment with in my art?
- What’s one new creative technique I could try out?
- How can I better express myself through my artwork?
- What art themes do I want to explore more?
- What piece of creative advice would I give my younger self as an artist?
- My worst fear about my relationship with creativity is…
- How can I become more professional as an artist?
- What’s one achievable goal I can set for myself as an artist?
- How can negative emotions help me create more beautiful art?
- What does my art mean to me?
- How can I infuse more meaning into my practice?
- What’s the most important thing my inner critic wants me to know about my art?
- How can I practice self-love through my art?
- How can I bring a moment of joy or insight to one person today through my art?
- What new activity can I do today to spark fresh ideas?
- What’s something new I want to learn in my own life that can also elevate my art?
- Who could I talk with today to get my creative juices flowing again?
- What piece of art can I re-do, but from a completely different point of view?
- If I were to explain my main creative obstacle to a 10-year-old, and really wanted them to understand it, how would I explain it?
- If my best friend would face the same challenge I now face, how would I advise him?
- How can I foster a more creative environment for myself to stay productive as an artist?
- What was the most beautiful audience reaction I’ve ever gotten for my art?
- What can I learn from the reaction I’ve gotten last time I shared my art with someone else?
- How can I set better boundaries around my creative time?
- If I could give my artwork a superpower, what would it be?
- How can I protect myself from emotional drama so it doesn’t distract me from my creative purpose?
- How can I transform any emotional energy into creative flow?
- How do I find the right balance between my personal and my creative life?
- What’s a better way to foster both my creativity and my mental health?
- Which words do I need to hear most when I doubt my own creative potential?
- How can I free myself from fear of being judged while I create?
- How can I protect my creative practice from going off the rails because of excessive self-criticism?
- How can I build greater creative confidence?
- What’s one new and beautiful way to celebrate my creative progress?
I hope you find these useful in your daily practice.
The benefits of using morning pages prompts
It just makes kickstarting my morning journaling routine easier when I have a prompt at hand, especially when you’re blocked creatively. But you absolutely don’t need to use them—and on some days I don’t.
There’s also something beautiful about having daily journal prompts since they give you a thematic consistency and gently guide your mind to focus on something you consciously chose, and then make more time for what truly matters to you. It’s a little drop in the ocean of well-being that can help you improve self-awareness.
Who you are on any given day is very much related to the thoughts and feelings you have at the start of your day, and rather than let random social media posts clutter your mind.
And they can help you both come up with new ideas, as well as sort through and filter out the really good ones when you’re in a state of mind of feeling overwhelmed by too many ideas.
My free-writing journal entries are more interesting and fun than when I used to keep a gratitude journal, which sometimes was great, but many times also felt more forced and artificial than having a creative journal.
There’s really no limit to writing prompts when it comes to your journaling practice, and there’s no wrong way of going about it. It’s all about conducting a brain dump—to get thoughts that are stealthily hovering around in the various corners of your mind out into the light of day through stream of consciousness writing.
That’s the power of these morning journal prompts: you can do what you want with them. And if you make it a daily habit, you’ll feel more free to experiment, because you won’t stress too much about the significance of any particular writing session.
Do you have any favorite prompts? Share them in the comments!