I am a huge fan of clearing the mind before starting tasks such as writing. Mind mapping is a way of organizing your ideas in a highly visual manner. I like to use color pencils and illustrations on my mind maps. This jump starts my creative juices and makes my imagination soar. I use mind maps to cite preconceived and non-preconceived associations that will flow freely and smoothly. Also mind mapping helps to connect ideas in interesting, new and exciting ways. Mind mapping can be done by hand, which I do. A mind mapping software can also be used. By hand or by software, it is much easier to see thoughts and creative threads. I started mind mapping years ago when I needed to remember what I read. It was a very fast, fun and easy way to write down notes. I then started to use it when I wanted to write on a specific topic. I was able to mind map just about everything that I could on that topic. Once it was all down on paper, I could then take it and mold it into whatever I wanted. I recommend trying mind mapping. It may be very helpful. Start at mindmapping.com. Then check out what some other writers say about mind mapping. There are many resources online.
Dreams are a great writing resource. They are the most creative parts of our day. If you are fortunate enough to remember your dream, give it honor and write it down. Who cares if it makes no sense? Don't judge.
What if it does make sense. Better yet. Aren't you glad you wrote down the details? The point is you wrote something and who can claim that you stole their idea? Dreams are ours and ours alone. Use this resource as often as you can. It never has to be seen by any eyes other than your own. Cherish what belongs to you. You will never run out of dreams. Let your subconscious know that dreams are important to you by endeavoring to remember them. Relish in your own creativity.
I started writing morning pages years ago after reading Julia Cameron’s book, Morning Pages. Back then, I got up each day bright and early, made sure all five of my children were up, dressed and prepared for school, drove to three different schools; elementary, junior high and senior high. That was before I home schooled my two youngest children. On Saturdays, plus a few days during the week, my family did missionary work for the church. Sundays we went to Church. I had date days and night with my husband each week. Not to mention, all the housework, cooking, gardening, bible study, miscellaneous and one on one motherly counseling for each child. I say all this to emphasis, “I needed to find time to write! I must write. I felt called to write.” Morning pages sounded impossible. Three full pages of handwritten prose. But I never let challenges stop me from what I really felt called to do. According to Julia, morning pages didn’t need to stay on topic, have a topic, make sense, be overly thought out – just write. After a full week of this I looked forward to it. I found that I was able to put down on paper my cluttered thinking. Cluttered thinking was all the thoughts that were floating around waiting for me to give them attention. Writing them down was giving them attention. I also found that it helped me to organize. It just happened. Chaos on the page. Clarity in the mind. I was driving the 405 freeway of my mind, anytime of day, with no traffic jams at all (that’s a California metaphor). Thumbs up! I would recommend morning pages. It did change my life. Below are just a few of the long lasting benefits that came with a year of morning pages (I still do it when I need a refresher). * Better creativity in all sectors of life. * Sounder sleep and waking more refreshed. * Staying on task much easier. * Improved memory, patience and tolerance. * I smile and laugh more.