Earlier this year, I tried to start my own Happiness Project.  I confess, I didn’t think about it like I should have and it has largely fallen off my plans for this year.   Maybe next year I’ll pick it back up.

But I’ve decided to start on The Artist’s Way.  This book by Julia Cameron teaches you how to unlock your creativity.  I have been missing something like this since I finished the creative writing classes I took. In my job, somewhat unpredictable travel is common, so signing up for a class I have to attend in person isn’t a good plan for me right now.  I’ve been looking for things I can do on my own but that still use my brain in a different way.

I settled on The Artist’s Way because it seemed to call to me right now. I’ve had the book for ages, but never really committed to the twelve weeks. The time feels right, now.

So I started off on Sunday, deciding to go on a Sunday-Sunday basis.  The book recommends doing something called “Morning Pages”, writing three pages in a notebook every morning.  In a way, it’s a form of meditation, designed to get all the garbage out of you head.  I did my first three pages Sunday night and wow- three pages seems like a LOT.  And Monday morning, three pages felt like a LOT.  But you’re not supposed to go back and re-read these pages, at least for several weeks.  And if you can’t think of what to write for three pages, you can write “I don’t know what to write” so you sort of have an out if three pages seems like a LOT.  You’re allowed to write stuff that is seemingly meaningless.

The thing I noticed Monday morning is that it was easy for me to brain dump at first, listing a litany of things on my mind. But then I started thinking about a work to-do list and it stressed me out to the point that I had to stop the Morning pages and turn on the computer.  I think that is not an example of how this is supposed to work but I simply couldn’t relax until I had turned on the computer and made a few notes.  Once I did that, I was back to filling out my three pages.

I guess that is my first big lesson on this.   While the projects I have at work are important, we’re not, in my case, saving lives with what I do. So why couldn’t I relax enough for 15-30 minutes before work to meditate?

I managed to get in three pages on Tuesday and today as well, although it still seemed like  a LOT.  But both Tuesday and Wednesday, I woke up before my alarm and was ready to write. I’m proud to say very little of what I wrote has been “I don’t know what to write.”  Now I just need to figure out what I am going to do for my Artist’s date this week.  I’m going to a concert on Friday night. That doesn’t technically count, because it is something I am supposed to do on my own.


Maybe I’ll watch a classic movie or something like that. Either way, I’m excited to be embarking on the Artist’s Way.