The Best Addiction You’ll Ever Have

I am a morning person.  By “morning person,” I mean that even though it’s early and I am still groggy, my eyes are still half-closed, and any evidence of my patience is still three hours away, I am technically and legally still classifiable as a person.  Some people may be able to claim this title as one who tackles the beginning of the day with gusto and enthusiasm.  Those people should wait those three hours I mentioned to interact with me, or at least until I’ve had some chemical intervention.

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Variety…it really IS the spice of life

My mornings, until recently, were wastelands of activity and the part of the day I gleefully pissed away eating, showering, and dreading doing whatever it was I was waking up for.  Then the idea of writing first thing in the morning was suggested to me.  Aimless, abstract writing as soon as I wake up and put my glasses on and can put pen to paper.  Needless to say, my handwriting is not best at six in the morning, though I could always become a doctor with the chicken scratch I’ve been churning out at dawn.

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Typical Johns Hopkins Med School Application

Not long after starting this habit, the same person who recommended my new daily “chore” mentioned a site called 750words.com.  This isn’t a shameless plug for this site, although I do have zero shame about mentioning them.  This site simply provides a space for you to write AT LEAST seven hundred and fifty words a day, every day, for no other reason than to develop the habit of writing every day. I figured that since I was writing every morning, I might as well write constructively and in a format that will remain legible long after the crust in my eyes is gone.  I also knew it would be perfect for generating ideas for my blog, or for no other reason as to get my thoughts and ramblings out of my head, leaving some room for the really important stuff, like quotes from This Is Spinal Tap, state capitals, and Simpsons trivia.

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Pictured:  95% of my thoughts

The result of my newfound routine has proven to be not only a font of source material for what I consider the greatest website on Earth, but one of the most therapeutic endeavors I’ve ever embarked upon.  One of my biggest complaints is that I don’t have an outlet for a lot of my thoughts, feelings, and questions that probably have very obvious answers.  Writing every day doesn’t necessarily solve all of my problems (just one would be nice,) but it literally clears my head so that I can focus what I need to accomplish, and best of all, it documents what I’m thinking and going through at any given point in time.  There is definitely a lost art of journaling regularly, especially among men.  Somewhere in the past century, writing shit down began to be considered unmanly we resorted to that most masculine of techniques, bottling everything up inside until it manifests itself in an unhealthy way.  Or you just die.

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Lewis Black, the healthiest man in America.

What I’ve learned is that “getting it all out,” literally and physically putting thought onto paper (or more often, typing it onto a blank web page,) has been one of the best new hobbies I’ve ever taken on to the point where if I miss a day of writing, not just in the morning, I feel like I’ve wasted the day.  Like I didn’t leave my mark on the world for that twenty-four hour period.  Some addictions are terrible, with horrendous implications on one’s health, career, and family.  This one has added to all three for me, and it’s my hope that it doesn’t stop there.

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Manner is a site dedicated to men dressing, living & acting better, and is based in Jacksonville, Florida.  Follow us on Twitter @MannerJax

12 thoughts on “The Best Addiction You’ll Ever Have”

  1. I write differently by hand (longhand) than I do on my laptop. Morning writing is helpful to me as it clears my mind of thoughts I need to release after a friend told me about morning pages. Thank you for the link to writing 750 words. I’ll try this, too. Good to know others feel as I do.

  2. So great to hear your experience. I used to do morning pages when I was going through The Artist’s Way. That book was instrumental in helping me, allowing me to accept myself as an artist. It saved me, and my writing in the way you described saved me in a lot of ways. So great to hear you share about it in this way.

  3. Writing is an awesome thing to do in the morning, I agree! Thanks for reminding me about 750words, I once made an account in 2012 or something, and I just logged in and got to read a lot of my old writing. 🙂

  4. I love this! I really resonated with the entire thing. Getting up early, (I am a morning person) does not mean I wake up 100%, it means I force myself out of bed, literally have to remind myself how to take my few steps (like come on Jenny you can do hard things like getting out of your soft/warm bed this is how you walk, remember?) I was giggling during this post while being really inspired! Thank you for the suggestion and the link to 750words.com. What a brilliant idea. I also feel a day without writing seems to feel lost in the shuffle. I applaud this addiction! Thanks for your awesome post!

    • Thank you for that Jenny. I’m glad I’m not the only one who knows that being a morning person can be a pain, but you do it anyway. So happy to hear that you enjoyed it and that it inspired you. Take care!

      Robert

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