‘I hate mornings’ vs ‘I love mornings’

So how many times you’ve heard a saying ‘Oh, I’m a night owl, I can not wake up early in the morning’. I used to say the same thing myself. And I still enjoy the morning snooze 🙂 Nevertheless, about a year and a half ago I found out that it is not a ‘condition’, it’s not set in stone and it can be changed. Waking up early in the morning or last minute in the morning is simply a habit and habits can be gained or changed.

A lot of people hate mornings. And even though ‘hate’ is a very strong word, many of us struggle with the early mornings and wake up moaning, complaining and, of course, rushing afterwards. Well, this is some set-up for the new day… Great start one could say 😉

The ‘night owls’ (including me) would follow the pattern above. And would press on that snooze button continuously. I even had a system – I would set up my alarm precisely the last minute I NEEDED to wake up to be able to get ready on time. I was not up for pressing the snooze button, I had a better way (ha ha ha). You can only imagine how stressful it was each and every morning running around, rushing and stressing about any unpacked school bags, unprepared clothes or lunches etc. When I started my days like this it was not easy then to rewind and switch on the positive gear. So why I kept doing this? A simple bad habit…

“Considering that our habits create our life, there is arguably no single skill that is more important for you to learn and master than controlling your habits. You must identify, implement, and maintain the habits necessary for creating the results you want in your life while learning how to let go of any negative habits which are holding you back from achieving your true potential.” (Hal Elrod)

I’ve heard so many times that in order to be successful you simply need to watch what successful people are doing and repeat their steps. Interestingly enough majority of my idols (Tony Robbins, Tim Ferris, Jim Rohn and many more) would have a set early morning routine. They would never jump into their day before taking their time to set their mind and prepare mentally, physically and spiritually. And even though I love them all dearly, I would always give myself an excuse that ‘I am a night owl and cannot do that’.

Until one day in January 2017, I was introduced to an amazing book called ‘The Miracle Morning’ by Hal Elrod. And THAT changed my perception and had a great positive effect on my life.

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“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)

According to Hal the sleeping in, and not being able to wake up, is simply having a lack of purpose in life or running away from life and troubles. And I was just like ‘whaaatttt?’. It really made me think. And start taking action. I never really thought I could do anything like that. I loved my comfy bed and pillow early in the morning. But after reading ‘My Miracle Morning’ book something shifted. I think Hal Elrod is simply very influential 😀 But it made sense!

“Remember, the moment you accept total responsibility for *everything* in your life is the moment you claim the power to change *anything* in your life.” ~ Hal Elrod

I’ll give you a quick review of what Hal talks about in this book. In simple terms, he suggests the One-hour a day formula. Powerful!

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The Miracle Morning book reveals Life S.A.V.E.R.S. — a set of six simple, life-enhancing, life-changing daily practices, each of which develops one or more of the physical, intellectual, emotional, and spiritual aspects of your life so that you can become who you need to be to create the life you want.

Life S.A.V.E.R.S. – a set of six simple daily practices that helps me rock it!
They are:

  • Silence
  • Affirmations
  • Visualization
  • Exercise
  • Reading
  • Scribing (journaling)

What does Hal mean by this and what do I do?

Silence

‘When there are peace and meditation, there is neither anxiety nor doubt’ (St. Frances de Sales)

Time for meditation. This is a biggy for me 🙂 Our minds work so much all the time and I sincerely believe that my mind is twice or three times more busy than anyone else’s… Not kidding. I feel I cannot switch off and it is a real challenge for me to sit quietly and stay centred. But again – that is another habit. So for me, tools are important. I found an amazing free app that I use for meditation called ‘Insight Timer’.

Affirmations

‘You can use affirmations to start programming yourself to be confident and successful in everything you do, simply by repeatedly telling yourself who you want to be, what you want to accomplish and how you are going to accomplish it. With enough repetition, your subconscious mind will begin to believe what you tell it, act upon it, and eventually, manifest it in your reality.’ (Hal Elrod) Not sure if you are aware how much we talk to ourselves. Which is simply talking to your mind and responding to the thoughts. Interestingly enough those thoughts naturally are somewhat negative: ‘you cannot do it’, ‘what are you thinking’, ‘how stupid was that’, ‘why did you do that’ etc. Our mind never encourages us, actually quite the opposite. That’s where affirmations help to reprogram our mind and change the direction.

“It’s the repetition of affirmations that leads to belief. Once that belief becomes a deep conviction, things begin to happen.” ~ Muhammad Ali

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I simply write them down and read them over every morning. Later I found an amazing app called ‘Think Up’ where you can record your own affirmations and then play them and listen to them anytime anywhere. You can have a few different types: affirmations for your health, money, career, self-esteem etc. Whatever you are lacking and need to work on. Listening to your own affirmations on the go recorded with your own voice works powerfully.

Visualizations

We all heard about creating vision boards, right? I hope you tried it before because it’s actually a very fun exercise. We did that with the kiddies some time ago and it’s an amazing and fun way of spending an afternoon.

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We created our vision board at least 5 years ago and in the meantime, we grew out of some wishes and desires, some have already happened and others will happen. According to Hal Elrod ‘Visualization, also known as creative visualization or mental rehearsal, refers to the practice of seeking to generate positive results in your outer world by using your imagination to create mental pictures of specific behaviours and outcomes occurring in your life.’ As human beings what we tend to do is focus on negative or things that have not happened more so than what we desire and work towards.

“Ordinary people believe only in the possible. Extraordinary people visualize not what is possible or probable, but rather what is impossible. And by visualizing the impossible, they begin to see it as possible.” ~ Cheri Carter-Scott

So why not try it? No harm, right? 😉

Exercise

We all know we need to exercise in order to stay healthy, fit and full of energy. But how can I have time for the exercise? Do it first thing in the morning. Get it out of your way! ‘Eat that frog’ – as Brian Tracey would say 😀

“If you don’t take time for exercise, you’ll probably have to make time for illness.” ~ Robin Sharma

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What exercise do you like? Exercise doesn’t mean it has to be a 100k cycle or half marathon. Sometimes it can simply be some yoga or pilates, a walk around a block. What about a swim? Just move that body! There is so much focus on the exercise lately because most of us are sitting in the office, at the computers the big part of the day and then move to the sofa in front of the TV…

Understandably this was not an issue 50 years ago when people were working in the fields, doing a lot of physical work, heavy lifting, carrying and much more. But what happened now? We don’t move that much. We use the car to bring kids to school, go shopping, travel to work, use the lift instead of the staircase and find any other possible shortcut. This is normal and we all do that unless we are very aware of the lack of physical activity. ‘When you exercise for even a few minutes every morning it significantly boosts your energy, enhances your health, improves self-confidence and emotional well-being, and enables you to think better and concentrate longer.’ (Hal Elrod)

Reading

My favourite part… 🙂 I love books. I LOVE reading. But… I used to go for the easy read, the reading for pleasure, anything from the fiction section. After reading ‘The Miracle Morning’ I started to gear more towards educational or motivational reads. My mornings are now dedicated to educational material and evening time I read a novel. I never thought I have time for different books nut now reading 10 pages every morning I finish a self-development or other type of educational book in a month or so. How cool is that?

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“Reading is to the mind what exercise is to the body and prayer is to the soul. We become the books we read.” ~ Matthew Kelly

The key is to learn from the experts—those who have already done what you want to do. We don’t need to reinvent the wheel. The fastest way to achieve anything you want is to model successful people who have already achieved it. And we can do that by reading their books.

Tim Ferris once said that evening time should be for helping to settle and calm your mind, therefore, evenings should be for an easy read. So I keep enjoying my novels in the evening but now also have time for the important literature 😉

Scribing

Hal uses this name for journaling. It’s simply writing down your thoughts and feelings to understand them more clearly. And if you struggle with stress, depression, or anxiety, keeping a journal can help you gain control of your emotions and improve your mental health. As well as your positive ideas: gratitudes, achievements, desires and plans. This exercise is simply for putting everything on paper. I find that helps me clarify my thoughts. No matter how far technologies have progressed, pen and paper is still an amazing exercise for the mental well-being. Don’t make it complicated – get a journal, start writing and keep writing. It’s your thoughts, your ideas, your emotions. No one needs to read it or see it.

“Paper is to write things down that we need to remember. Our brains are used to think.” ~ Albert Einstein

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Simple, right? As Jim Rohn would say: ‘simple, but not easy’ 🙂

I am still working on these habits. I start and I drop it. I do few things and I ignore the others. It takes time and practise. But what I love the most is the clarity and simplicity of this practice. Having an hour for myself in the morning before I start the day and jump into mummy duties is the most enjoyable and satisfying practice. This time is really precious. I would highly recommend to try it 🙂

Lots of love,

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Categories: Book Reviews, Healthy Body Tips, Healthy Family Tips
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