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The Puss Pages. Sunday July 27, 2014

For cat lovers this isn't referring to kitty stories. Nope.

The positive thing about writing is that you connect with yourself in the deepest way, and that's heaven. You get a chance to know who you are, to know what you think. You begin to have a relationship with your mind. - Natalie Goldberg

Perhaps, I feel, even more important than having a relationship with your mind is getting in touch with your feelings. My Puss Pages help me do just that. Otherwise known as the 'morning pages' spoken of in The Artist's Way by Julia Cameron.

Each day, if I can, I squeeze out all the mental puss by writing, uncensored and unmeasured, in a cheap ole notebook. There is little beauty to be found here and they are not to be read back over. (These pages are not like my journals which contain only the beautiful strands of my everyday tapestry.) There certainly isn't checking of spelling, grammar or sentence structure. You simply go at it, not stopping until you have filled both sides of an A4 piece of paper. Sometimes I'll scribble (if the puss isn't free flowing) down something nice, like the how pretty the flowers look in front of me but, for the most part, it's all the ruminations, anxieties, upsets and the tumbles of everyday.

Kept up and done regularly, these pages can cause the fault lines running through our life to shift and move. In short, they can cause little miracles and blessings to happen. It's like walking through dense jungle and then suddenly having a kindly native come up and walk in front of you, machete in hand, clearing the way before you. You'll become suddenly very aware of what goals you need to set or what areas of your life you'd like to change or improve. Indeed, everything becomes a lot clearer.

Last Sunday, I felt deeply agitated and edgy. I then I realised, I'd failed to do my Puss Pages for the last week or so. Oh I'm a master at this. I have severe lows, I relearn all the things that help, I manifest little signs of improvement so then, stupidly, stop doing all the things that help and then, obviously, still being firmly ensconced in the Fragile Camp, I start sinking again.

Your pages almost certainly won't contain epiphanies, winsome words, grandiose thoughts; they will however, be packed with all the everyday tedium, fretting and daily angsts. Stick with it though. Life sure gets a lot clearer and calmer when you clear out all the mental garbage each day.

Imagine if you didn't empty your rubbish bin regularly!

A Moodscope member.

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Ellen Uma Sun, Jul 27th 2014 @ 6:06am

I've been doing morning pages for a couple of years now, and I agree with you wholeheartedly how useful they are. I do read mine back through just once, a few months later, to see if there are any good ideas/tasks that I rambled about that I hadn't got round to, but then I lock them away. I have to ask myself regularly when I'm writing 'how do I feel?' as otherwise I can get stuck in just reporting on the day before, but it has led to some very thought provoking writing for me. Thanks for this post Suzy.

Anonymous Sun, Jul 27th 2014 @ 6:35am

I agree that it is the very process of 'emptying out the garbage' regularly that is so therapeutic...I hardly ever want to re-read what I diary is for that.. and these ruminations are often penned in such frustration that they are nigh on illegible to me or anyone else for that matter ( when feeling paranoid, I'll write them in my second language just to be sure no one else understands them anyway!)

Ali Sun, Jul 27th 2014 @ 8:44am

I think that's a really good idea Suzy and am going to start keeping my own pus pages to empty all the stuff that is in my head but needs to come out. Thank you for sharing.

PWD Sun, Jul 27th 2014 @ 8:52am

Great blog Suzy I like it. I am just re reading a book on positive thinking one of the quotes is, The quality of your thoughts determines the quality of your life. Its pretty damn hard to change but we need to keep trying.


heather Sun, Jul 27th 2014 @ 9:17am

Excellent quote Paul.

Lois Sun, Jul 27th 2014 @ 10:23am

I've had Morning Pages recommended to me over the years but I've never actually done them. Going to buy myself a pad on Monday and get going! Thanks for the reminder.

Suzy Sun, Jul 27th 2014 @ 11:15am

I'm truly, truly sorry folks for the spelling error of 'pus' in your original email. How remiss of me.

I hope so much that it hasn't detracted too much from the message because writing these pages can help so, so much in mental and emotional recovery and, if kept up, can keep us well. They are always in integral part of finding my way out of a depression. I just need to keep doing them even when out of the woods!

"If at first you don't succeed, then try and try again."

And that goes for my writing errors too.

Have a peaceful Sunday lovely people,


Julia Sun, Jul 27th 2014 @ 12:44pm

I didn't know how to spell pus either and liked the cat connection but actually I am glad someone pointed out the correct spelling as I now know! I must keep a notebook of my feelings especially in the morning when I wake up and feel low and negative. Why do I never keep these things up? I started to draw once after encouragement on this site, I enjoyed doing it but one day must have stopped for goodness knows what reason. Anyway thank you Suzy for your blog. AND you are not defined by your spelling or anything else for that matter. However you do write well. You have to admit this! So one nice definition of you would be..she is a really good writer or any other superlative one would like to use.

heather Sun, Jul 27th 2014 @ 7:21pm

Great quote Paul. So true.

heather Sun, Jul 27th 2014 @ 7:25pm

I think we love each other for our mistakes as much as our triumphs. Not a hope in hell that I could ever do that writing, but a really fantastic thing for anyone who can. Love Heather xx

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