My Miracle Morning (Sort of)
At the end of April I read an amazing book, The Miracle Morning: The Not-So-Obvious Secret Guaranteed to Transform Your Life (Before 8AM) by Hal Elrod. In this book, along with his own fascinating story, Hal shares how he developed a morning routine that incorporates the six common elements that highly successful people do every day. He calls them his Life SAVERS: Silence, Affirmations, Visualization, Exercise, Reading and Scribing (journaling). By rising early and accomplishing all six of these practices before doing anything else, he and many thousands of others have seen exponential growth in their business and personal lives. (He also has books targeted for network marketers, real estate agents and sales people.)
I found the story of Hal’s life to be of great relevance to the development of the Miracle Morning (MM). At age 20 he was hit by a drunk driver and died on the side of the interstate. He was revived, and that was the first time he rose from the dead, literally and figuratively. I could identify with his overall story of feeling like you have it all only to turn around and end up crying in your coffee (or maybe that part is just me!) again and again.
Hal’s personal story is the perfect set up to show how the MM turned his life around – permanently. He addresses some main concerns about early rising and offers advice on being successful in making this new habit a part of your life, then goes point by point over the six Life SAVERS. He then offers a variety of ways to tweak the MM to make it fit your life.
First and foremost, I have to say that upon finishing this book, without doing a single MM yet, it had already changed my life by changing my thinking about the way I start my day. I cannot recommend it highly enough. Seriously, go out and buy it right now. (I’d appreciate it if you use my link! Thanks for your support!) It will transform you!
Second, I wanted to do this but as the mom of an almost two year old boy I wondered if I would actually have the energy to get out of bed….early…in order to do this. As most moms of toddlers can tell you, life is half blissful euphoria of non-stop laughter and joy and half trying to thread a needle with someone slapping your hands and screaming in your ear. Plus, sleep is a hot commodity and you never seem to have had quite enough of it. How could I give up blessed sleep to add yet another task to my day?
But, I was convinced that all of these successful people were on to something so I was going to give it my best. Will had been waking up around 7:30a.m. for months, so I set my wake up time to be 6a.m. For the first five days, it was amazing. I had no trouble getting up because I was excited about having this time to myself, doing things I enjoy, feeling good and setting myself up for success. I was also nailing my writing goals each day with no problem. I had never been more productive! I was sold. Hal is a genius!
On Day 6 Will decided that because mommy was waking up early that he should start waking up early, too. My MM began to be disrupted regularly the following week by his early rising, which I responded to with no small amount of frustration. But I was still getting in most of it and just tried to roll with it. (I have since learned that this phenomena is common. There appears to be some invisible link between toddlers and their moms when the child just knows when mom is awake and therefore wakes up, too.)
At that point, Will began sleep regressing. This is when a toddler who has been sleeping through the night starts having sleep disruptions like when they were younger. He would awaken and stay awake from 2a.m. to 4a.m., or wake up for the day at 5, 4, even 3 a.m.! It didn’t seem to bother him one bit, but I was shredded. I was either too exhausted to get up for my beloved MM, or Will had already been awake for two hours when it was time for me to start. (Try getting five minutes of silence or successfully visualizing your goals while being a human jungle gym to a two year old.) My writing? Half as much or less compared to when I was getting my MM and it was back to being sporadic and inconsistent.
I was so tired and frustrated I flat out quit trying to do a routine at all. I thought that I would just have to wait until he was older and try again. That made me sad, because my MM made me feel so good and it had turbocharged my productivity! Hal covered lots of obstacles in his book, but sleep-striking toddlers was not one of them.
Then I had an epiphany. The only thing stopping me from having my miracle routine is my own belief that it absolutely has to be done at the start of my day. Since the start of my day had become so unpredictable, it was almost impossible to set a wake up time, and even if I did actually completing the routine would be highly questionable. My only option was to find another time. I (usually) get an afternoon break when Will naps and I have an opportunity for some quiet time after he goes to bed. These are my choices.
It is a bit like having your morning coffee at three in the afternoon, I admit. Is doing it in the evening as good as doing it in the morning? Probably not. But any miracle is better than no miracle, and I am going to do what I have the power to do without whining about how it’s not perfect.
I completed my first “Miracle Evening” two nights ago, and you know what? I still enjoyed it. I still felt empowered and inspired. Last night was bringing to a close a very challenging and emotionally difficult day. I did not want to do anything. So I reminded myself how much better I feel after doing my routine and grudgingly convinced myself to do a condensed version (Hal goes over this in the book) with just two minutes each for the first four practices and unlimited time for reading and writing because that’s what I needed the most.
When I got to bed I fell asleep easily, and when Will sprang to life at 5:30 this morning I had enough energy to giggle with him as he ran over to me saying “Hi! Hi!” as I still lay in bed. Now that is a miracle morning.
Check out all of Hal’s Miracle Morning books here:*
*These are affiliate links so I get a small referral fee if you buy through my links – there is no additional cost to you. I appreciate your support!