A few years ago I read a book called the Miracle Morning by Hal Elrod. The book talks about starting your morning with six habits or rituals that can help you personally grow.
The six parts of the routine—silence, affirmations, visualization, exercise, reading, and scribing—can improve our physical, emotional, mental, and spiritual health. They don’t have to take a lot of time, but can get you into the right frame of mind for a great day.
I’m trying to treat my morning routines the same way. Eating healthy isn’t about nutrition. Exercising isn’t about being in shape. Not hitting the snooze button isn’t about getting an extra fifteen minutes about my day. Instead these are morning rituals that I strive to perform because performing them creates a structure. That structure carries throughout the day and makes the habits of getting my work done and not procrastinating a little easier.
Rituals allow us to navigate our imperfect worlds, and create structure in a reality that is often structureless. So while the repetitive chants of the monk may seem superfluous in a modern age, these rituals have an indirect use in creating a structure for living our lives.
The Concept in Detail
The Miracle Morning is a concept developed by Hal Elrod, author, coach and motivational speaker. After a tragic accident which meddled with his short-term memory he decided to take fate into his own hands. During his stay in the hospital, he realized he couldn’t change the past. But he did realize that by accepting what had happened to him, he could take full responsibility for his future. It fueled a triumphant comeback in his corporate career – which during the recession, ended in what he would call his biggest mental downfall. Only then did his idea for The Miracle Morning come to life.
The Miracle Morning message is clear: To consistently and constructively improve yourself on a personal level, you should make time to do it. Time we don’t really have next to our busy professional and social lives. But Hal found a solution.
You just put your alarm clock an hour earlier than usual.
Here is my approximate “miracle morning” version:
5:50 am – Wake up
5:57 am – Silence or Meditation
6:10 am – Affirmations
6:20 am – Visualisation
6:25 am – Scribing or Journaling
6:30 am – Reading
6:50 am – Exercise
7:00 am – Shower and dress up
Each Habit Broken Down
What to do? Spend some time without moving and in total silence. I enjoyed this practice and I used one of the meditation apps that I have on my phone: Headspace or Soultime (for christian meditations from the bible).
Meditation can help you start your day in a totally different state.
What to do? Figure out what you would like to change in different areas of your life, write these aspects down and then read them aloud or quietly.
This is an example of an affirmation that Hal has written for himself at the beginning of his affirmations journey: “I let go of my belief that my memory is awful. My brain is an incredible organ, which is capable to heal itself, and my memory can get better, but it depends on how much I believe in this improvement…” (not a whole phrase).
I am christian so I use christian declarations. I love the 30 declarations from the book ‘I Declare’ by Joel Osteen.
What to do? Imagine the goals you aspire to achieve and then think of the steps you need to take to get there. It may sound too vague, so the author suggests imagining the day ahead of you and it’s best possible scenario. This is an easier task, isn`t it?
Here is a tip for you, think of the things that you have written about in your affirmations section and then imagine what it would take to achieve these goals. You can also use pinterest to collate pictures of what you want to achieve. Here is an example of my pinterest ideas.
What to do? Start a new notebook or choose an application for notes and then try several different ways of scribing. For example, you could choose the five minute journal technique or a regular journal, in which you simply write down the thoughts that fill your head at that particular moment.
Personally I use the greatness journal. I like that there is a morning and evening sections and breaks down goals into quarterly action steps.
Our heads are full of information, ideas and worries, so why not empty it out on a regular basis? There are numerous options, and you need to find the one that you will consider the most useful. Just try!
What to do? Take a book that you have wanted to read for ages and read it for a certain amount of time. It can be non-fiction and it can be fiction. You are the one in charge, so feel free to make your own choice. I am going to be subjective, but I am convinced that daily reading is one of the best habits that any of us can build.
This practice is a solution for everyone who is convinced that there is not enough time for reading. In order to read at all or read more, you need to stop wasting your time on something useless and start making time for reading.
Hal’s recommended reading list is here.
What to do? Spend a chosen amount of time doing any kind of sport.
Hal suggests twenty minutes, but it varied for me. On some days, I only had ten minutes, so I spent them doing “my home workout plan” and a few other basic yoga stretches. However, on other days, I was either able to do a full video on my favourite channel yoga with Adriene or I spend five-ten minutes doing stretches at home and then went to the gym.
I am still unsure whether I think that doing sport before my day begins is a good idea for me. On the one hand, I wake up and I feel zero energy. On the other, I have already learnt that I feel much better both physically and mentally after doing exercise or going to the gym in the morning. On top of that, it is just like with reading — it may seem like you do not have the time to do it, but in reality you simply waste a lot of time and then you do not have enough for it for meaningful activities.
The truth is that doing what you tend to lack time for in the morning is a great way to discover that there is more than enough time.
If you are a network marketer like me, Hal created a special edition called ‘The Miracle Morning for Network Marketers’
This book includes:
The S.A.V.E.R.S.: Six simple morning practices that will transform your life and your business!
The fundamental skills that are critical for MASSIVE success in network marketing!
The actual morning routines of some of the most successful network marketers in the world!
The 30 Day Challenge
So I have been practicing the miracle morning now and then for the past few years but I have never done a full 30 days in a row. I’m planning to try the Miracle Morning challenge for 30 days. Which I admittedly expect to be a bit of a struggle.
I will be starting the challenge on the 6th of May 2019 and I will invite my braver readers to join me for this 30 day challenge. Feel free to start any time you want; there is no time limit. Make sure to use the #MM30DayChallenge tag on Instagram and Twitter, as I will too! When I finish my challenge I will write up a challenge report, which you’ll be able to read on the blog.
As Hal Elrod points out in his book, “the necessity to keep track of what you do brings order to our life and lets us make progress, improve and achieve the results that we would not be able to achieve otherwise”.
What does it all mean? That while following the miracle morning thirty-day challenge, you need to keep record of what you do.
How? Go to the author`s website to download a set of useful files. Read them before starting the program and use in the process. Personally I simply created a basic spreadsheet and filled it in every day (this tracker I use for my arbonne activity and habits).
An important detail — the author acknowledges that there might be days when you will be unable to stick to “the miracle morning” program. For example, when you have to fly somewhere or another important reason. In such cases, you need to add empty circles in your spreadsheet in advance, whereas if you oversleep or act too lazy, then you must write down minuses instead and simply tick the days that you do the activity. This is important, because it lets you keep track of your dynamics and analyze it during the month and afterwards.
A Final Thought
Like I said earlier, I am going to ami for a full 30 days in a row starting 6th of May 2019 and ending on the 4th of June (My birthday!). I would love as many of you guys as possible to do this with me.
If you are reading this after the 4th of June, then I hope you find this post useful and that you implement the six rituals into your morning routine.