I am not a morning person. My morning routine previously consisted of me hitting snooze several times, or lying in bed perusing Facebook until the last possible second, then jumping out of bed and scrambling around like a crazy person trying to get myself and my kids out the door on time. I did this every. single. day. My husband is the complete opposite and wakes up at five a.m. ready to tackle the day. Whether you are a morning person or that crazy person running around every morning, I want to show you how a change in your morning routine, can truly change your life.*This post may contain affiliate links, which means I make a small commission at no cost to you. I only promote things I believe in. Thank you for supporting Seashells and Storytime!
One of the reasons I had trouble getting out of bed each morning, is because I didn’t look forward to my morning. I love my kids; but who looks forward to asking your kids to get dressed, brush their teeth, and put their shoes on ten times every morning!?
However; if I dig a little deeper it was more than just nagging my kids that kept me in bed each morning. I was lost. I became a stay-at-home mom so I could be present for all those important parenting moments, and I love every one of them, but I was desperately seeking a purpose outside of motherhood. I needed something I felt passionate about, successful at, and something that would give me a sense of self-worth, while still being present for all those important moments in my children’s lives.
Can you relate?
One of those mornings while I was perusing Facebook at six a.m., I came across the book, The Miracle Morning, in my news feed. I had two choices that day; I could scroll right by it like everything else, or I could give it a shot. I went to Amazon.com and the book was at my doorstep two days later.
Once again, I had two choices; I could add it to the pile of books I have yet to read (I’m a huge book lover) or I could read it. I knew becoming a morning person was going to challenge me, so it was really tempting to put it at the bottom of the pile. But instead, I took the second option. I moved it to the top of my pile and started reading it right away.
Why you should read The Miracle Morning by Hal Elrod
Before you start thinking that you don’t have time to read, STOP. You don’t have time not to read this book. It’s quick, easy, and life changing! Hal Elrod summarizes why perfectly…
“How you wake up each day and your morning routine (or lack thereof) dramatically affects your levels of success in every single area of your life. Focused, productive, successful mornings generate focused, productive, successful days — which inevitably create a successful life — in the same way, that unfocused, unproductive, and mediocre mornings generate unfocused, unproductive, and mediocre days, and ultimately a mediocre quality of life. By simply changing the way you wake up in the morning, you can transform any area of your life, faster than you ever thought possible.” – Hal Elrod
It makes so much sense, yet so many of us choose to go to bed late, hit snooze, and start our days negatively.
The 95% Reality Check
While I was reading this book, there was one paragraph that really stood out to me.
“According to the Social Security Administration, if you take my 100 people at the start of their working careers and follow them for the next 40 years until they reach retirement age, here’s what you’ll find: only 1 will be wealthy; 4 will be financially secure; 5 will continue working, not because they want to but because they have to; 36 will be dead, and 54 will be broke and dependent on friends, family, relatives, and the government to take care of them.” – Hal Elrod
Over 50% of people will be broke when they reach retirement age! Perhaps I am naïve, but that is shocking to me. Do you want to live a life of mediocrity and dependence on others, or do you want to challenge yourself to be in the top 5%? Quite frankly, it’s a lot easier to choose mediocrity. By choosing the top 5% we are choosing to go outside of our comfort zone and push through our fears. We are choosing to take risks and to be judged by others who do not see our vision and share our passion. We are choosing the path less traveled. BUT we are also choosing a life of freedom, success, and happiness. We are choosing to live life to the fullest and with that comes the confidence and fulfillment that we all desire.
What exactly is The Miracle Morning?
I highly encourage you to read the book, as you will get much more out of it than I can summarize here. Hal Elrod shares his personal struggles and successes, which include coming face to face with death. His story is powerful and inspiring.
The book starts by encouraging us all to live to our full potential. Yes! This is what I was looking for! For the past year, I had been on a mission to find my full potential, but I didn’t know where to start. I had never considered that small changes in my morning routine would help me find my purpose.
So how do we realize our full potential? It’s more than just a change in our morning routine, it’s a change in our mindset. You have to start by being open to change and willing to be disciplined. It takes hard work!
Here’s where the morning routine comes in. Hal suggests waking up an hour earlier than you normally would. What’s that? You couldn’t possibly wake up an hour earlier!? YES, YOU CAN! Start by going to bed 15 minutes earlier, then 30 minutes earlier, until you work up to an hour earlier. Maybe you don’t need to go to bed earlier. I found that I don’t actually need the eight hours I always thought I needed. I function fine on seven when I start my day the right way. If you go to work super early or work overnights, do your routine at night, just find time to nurture your mind and body.
But, your kids are keeping you up all night long? Been there, done that. If you have an infant at home this might not be the right time to start your miracle morning. If your children are no longer infants, and you are still struggling with sleep, I highly suggest you reach out to my friend Jessica over at The Baby Sleep Geek. She helps so many tired parents regain their sleep and their quality of life.
So, what do you do in the first hour of your day? Hal breaks it down into SAVERS…Silence, Affirmations, Visualization, Exercise, Reading, and Scribing. You don’t have to do them in that order. Heck, you don’t have to follow his exact plan, test it out and figure out what works for you.
Here’s a run-down of my morning routine.
- Grab a glass of water
- Meditate (5 mins) – I use the simple habitat app, but there are a lot of options out there. If you struggle with meditation give it a shot. If your mind wanders, that’s okay. A guided meditation will help you learn to focus. I find meditation very challenging, but I keep doing it.
- Journal (5 mins) – You can write as little or as much as you want, but I keep it short. I write a few sentences about what is on my mind, and then I list three things I’m grateful for. Practicing gratitude every day can completely change the way you look at your life and help you appreciate the small stuff.
- Review my daily affirmations (2 mins) – If you’re unfamiliar with writing affirmations please check out my post here.
- Review monthly and annual goals (2 mins)
- Visualize (3 mins) – Close your eyes and picture your life exactly how you want it to be. Your house, your family, your car, your job. Whatever you dream about, put yourself there.
- Read (15mins) – Read part of a personal development book each day. If you find a book you love, read it over and over again until every single word sinks in.
- Exercise (30mins) – Exercise can be as simple as a walk around the block or a short yoga video. Just do something to get your blood flowing! I’m a huge fan of Beachbody because they have a huge selection of workouts for all levels. I’ve lost ten pounds doing 21 Day Fix and 21 Day Fix Extreme, and the best part is, the workouts are only thirty minutes a day.
- Start your day with energy, purpose, and patience!
My morning usually starts before the kids wake up, but if they do wake up I’m lucky enough to have a husband who will get them moving in the morning, so I can finish my routine. If you can, ask your partner for help and support. Even better, ask them to join you and start their own miracle morning! Kids are unpredictable so some mornings you may have to shorten your routine, and from time to time I do have to skip it all together.
How The Miracle Morning has changed my life
First of all, I hear you. You’re reading this and thinking there is no way I can do this. We can all make a million excuses as to why we can’t find an hour each day to focus on ourselves. Stop making excuses and start finding a solution. Elrod addresses a lot of concerns in the book, but here’s the thing…when I wake up and spend an hour focusing on myself, my entire day is better. I am more patient with my kids. I am happier. I am healthier. I feel like I’ve already accomplished something by seven a.m. each day! I’m a role model for my kids because they see me taking care of myself, stepping outside my comfort zone, and taking the road less traveled!
Our mornings are not perfect, but they run so much smoother now because I’ve already been up for an hour when I see them. I’m awake, attentive, and happy because I just got my blood pumping and had time to think. I can focus on getting them ready for their day and do it with patience because I have extra time. Most importantly, my kids respond so much better when I don’t appear rushed and flustered.
Through my morning routine, I have successfully defined goals and visions for my life. I’m reading books to help me better my self-confidence, push through my fears, and find my passion. And in doing so, I am here finally following through on the blog that I started in my head two years ago. I am facing my fears, inspiring people, connecting with people, and finding time for me. Our busy lives are all about prioritizing what is most important. Aren’t the rewards worth prioritizing your miracle morning?
Who is joining me? What are you waiting for!? Buy the book here or check your local library, share this with a friend, and start your morning routine tomorrow! I can’t wait to hear about it!