I've written about how morning journaling helps me in a post about healthy creative habits. I mostly use it to manage my anxiety and process life, which helps me get creative and productive. My friend Arree Chung goes straight into creative productivity with his morning journaling, so I'm excited to share tips from him today.
What You Need to Get Started
You're going to write about three pages, so you need something to write with and a journal.
I noticed that we both get comfortable in a favorite place to write, so find a comfortable place before you start your morning journaling. I usually write on the same couch around the same time of day.
And if you have a morning beverage that lifts your mood, that will give you something to look forward to.
In the following video, Arree shares tips and questions he asks to guide his morning journaling practice. I recommend that you watch the video, and then I'll pull out some highlights for your convenience.
Just Start Writing.
You can write about anything that comes to your mind.
For me, that can come out as problems, ideas, goals, lists, a story . . . anything. It can be rubbish. Developing the habit is what's important in the beginning. The benefits of morning journaling will come.
Arree's Tips for Writers and Business Owners
If you're a writer, you can start writing ideas and magical moments from your stories.
If you're starting a business, think about your customers. How do you want to celebrate with them? What goals do you want to achieve? What do you want to help people with, and how do you want to use your business to transform the world?
Seven Questions to Guide Your Morning Journaling
These powerful questions come from THE COACHING HABIT, by Michael Bungay Stanier.
- What's on your mind?
- What else?
- What is this about?
- What do you want?
- Who can help?
- Yes/No (When we say YES to something, there is always a corresponding NO to another thing.)
- What was most useful?
After you've finished, you can go back over what you've written and highlight the gold. I use little Post-its to flag important entries.
The Three G's
What are the three things you're most GRATEFUL for?
I wrote a post about how gratitude helps us feel happy and creative that you can read if you're interested in how this helps. I don't always include gratitude in my morning journaling, but when I do, it lifts my mood.
The Three P's
What are the three most important PRIORITIES for today?
Narrowing down your priorities and tasks can actually help you get more done. And you can use morning journaling to determine which projects deserve your focus.
Please tell us about your morning practice in the comments. What have you found that works for you?
Myrna Foster is the Education Director for Storyteller Academy. She has spent a lot of time teaching and coaching children, including five years as a preschool teacher. She's also worked as a journalist, and Highlights High Five has published six of her poems.
Arree Chung is an author/illustrator and the founder of Storyteller Academy. Arree’s Ninja! series has received starred reviews from Kirkus and School Library Journal. Kirkus also gave a starred review to Mixed, which recently won the FCGB award.
Today Arree lives a creative life, making stories for children. Arree spends most of his time making picture books, writing middle grade novels, and sharing his love for art, design, and storytelling with kids and dreamers everywhere.