*Affiliate links are present throughout this site. This means that if you purchase anything through a link, I may make a small commission at no additional cost to you and you are supporting the creation of more articles like this one. THANK YOU!
While I was working on my New Year’s Resolutions for 2019, I was challenged by friends on YouTube to do the miracle morning 30 day challenge – i.e. to follow a new morning routine based on the bestselling book by Hal Elrod called The Miracle Morning.
The routine involves waking up an hour earlier for 30 days and following a series of tasks that overtime can make one more productive, more focused, more grateful, more successful, etc.
I was a little skeptical that a morning routine would somehow vastly improve my life, but I decided to participate in the challenge and see what would happen.
Self-care is one of my resolutions for 2019 and this challenge would, in theory, provide me one hour of me time each morning for 30 days!
What did I have to loose? (other than sleep- of course)
The Miracle Morning Routine
The Miracle Morning routine is based on 6 daily practices called SAVERS that according to Hal Elrod’s book, are to be practiced in the morning before you start anything else. Each part of the routine should be performed for at least one minute.
My Morning Routine
My morning begins by getting up as soon as I wake up. No more lounging around, hitting the alarm button and falling back asleep.
I brush my teeth and wash my face to give my body time to physically wake up.
Next, I grab a bottle of water and head to my basement, where it’s quiet, uncluttered and I don’t have to worry about waking anyone up with any noises.
I sit on the ground and start my daily practice by drinking at least 8 oz of water – I am parched after a night of sleep.
I stretch my head, neck, shoulder and back. This alleviates any tension I’ve been holding on to in these areas.
After hydrating and stretching, I move into the first practice of The Miracle Morning routine.
I use this time to meditate with soft light and a great smelling candle. I suffer from anxiety and although I have learned to pin-point most sources of my anxiety and stress, sometimes it is hard to find the exact trigger or even take the time to think about it and address it before it snowballs.
That is where meditation is really helpful. By doing it every morning, it allows me time to clear the mind and focus on the body, starting my day with peace instead of anxious feelings.
I use an app called Headspace – it offers guided meditation for 3, 5 or 10 minutes and it’s free for 10 sessions.
What I like about this app is that you can choose the type of meditation you want – for stress and anxiety, to fall asleep, etc., and it’s very simple to use.
After my free sessions were over, I found a guided meditation series on Amazon video free for Prime Members (get your 30-day free trial here). The sessions are a lot longer than Headspace, but it works just fine.
I’d never done affirmations before and as a born skeptical, I felt very silly saying things to myself like “I have unlimited power to succeed!” or “I can never fail, for everything that happens contributes to me being better.”
However, I have to admit, that after a couple days, the affirmations started having a positive effect on my attitude during the day- specially when I felt overwhelmed by my never ending to-do list.
If you don’t know where to start with affirmations – search Google or Pinterest for affirmations for a specific topic/goal you want to achieve. I created a Pinterest board for myself.
If you find yourself distracted easily by social media when you are online, or would just prefer to not have any technology during your practice, I found these great affirmation cards.
I’d never done any goal based Visualization so this was new as well.
Some people create vision boards to help keep them focused, but you can also do it just by closing your eyes and picturing the goal you would like to achieve – skinnier you, more organized house, etc…
You can take it a step forward and visualize yourself achieving those goals – organizing your closet, donating things and feeling uncluttered and fulfilled. This is an important step in this process because it helps you walk through each step you need to achieve your goal.
Professional athletes do it all the time before games. They visualize the play step by step. It’s like building “mental” memory instead of muscle memory.
For the The Miracle Morning routine I also created a vision board on Pinterest for my 2019 goals to make sure I stay focused.
My number one goal of 2019 is to loose weight through exercise and a healthier diet.
I have found the perfect way to start a fitness routine, however, anytime something happens – sickness, holiday, vacation, or deadline – the first thing that gets sacrificed is my exercise routine.
I always say I am going to exercise at home during these times, but it rarely happens.
For the Miracle Morning Routine, I started with 3 exercises that I can do with just body weight – squats, push ups and ab work. I set a limit of 3 sets of 12-15 reps for each and 30 secs to 1 minute rest time in between.
The first 2 days were brutal. I was really sore, so I did Yoga on the 3rd day and also took supplements (BCAA) to help my muscles recover. During the second week, I was already in much better shape.
Before I became a parent I was an avid reader. I read a book or two every week and was active in a bookclub in my neighborhood. Nowadays, my time is spent reading children’s book and by the time I hit my bed, I pass out within 10 minutes.
It’s not part of my 2019 resolutions, but I thought it would be great if I could read or listen to a book for 10 mins every morning.
I listen to it during my workout. It makes me feel like I am being very productive and growing personally at the same time.
I think the last time I had a journal I was in high school.
These days the only time I write it’s for this blog and I like to do it in big chunks of time. 10 minutes didn’t seem enough to jot down anything meaningful to me.
I was wrong.
I found the 5 Minute Journal and decided to give its outline a try during this challenge. Surprisingly, because it asks very specific questions, it was so easy to jot down a few lines every morning.
It’s so beneficial to outline what I am grateful for and what is one thing that would make my day great. This latter question helped me to focus on my biggest priority for the day and stay accountable to it.
I also started including a section to write about my stress level and what was causing it, so that I could see trends and be able to address these things and prevent the awful feelings associated with anxiety.
I watched a lecture in which Hal Elrod (the author) is telling his life story and explaining how The Miracle Morning came about. In the lecture, he talked about the 5- Minute Rule. I found fascinating the concept of allowing oneself 5 minutes to be upset and angry and then letting go of something that happened and that one can’t change because it’s already passed.
I consider myself someone who lives in the present and not the past, but I wonder if by journaling stressors in my life, I will find things I can’t change that I can let go.
The results are in! What has changed and how I am feeling after 30 days of doing The Miracle Morning routine?
I can’t believe all the positive changes that have happened in my life in just 30 days!
I was really skeptical of the Miracle Morning Routine, but I kept an open mind about it and I am so glad I did.
From the first week, I started seeing real changes in my productivity, mood, patience, and stress/anxiety level. I feel more grateful and more focused.
Here are the areas I saw the biggest changes in my life over 30 days.
Fitness and Mental Health
Meditation and Exercise are the two areas where I saw the most return while doing the Miracle Morning Routine. I have more energy, feel more accomplished and have effectively reduced my anxiety and stress level.
I lost 2.5 lbs by doing nothing else than 3 sets of exercises every morning.
Meditation has had such an impact into my anxiety and stress that it is astonishing! If nothing else, I plan on doing this part of the Miracle Morning routine forever.
The only negative is that by waking up earlier and exercising, my energy level tends to crash in the afternoon. Some of the women that I did this challenge with suggested that I take a nap. I haven’t been able to build that in yet, but I am planning to.
Water Intake and Skin Condition
By starting my day with at least 8oz, I was able to drink more water than I usually do throughout the day. I am drinking upwards of 80oz a day.
That is amazing to me, since I had to remind myself to drink water before and always felt dehydrated.
I also noticed my skin is much better. I attribute that to more water and less stress, which flushes out toxins in my body and regulates my hormones.
I am getting so much more done now that I have time in the morning to myself- exercise, meditation, reading.
Even after all that I still have about 30-45 mins left to work on my business before my son wakes up.
This extra time has been invaluable. I am more efficient working in the morning when the house is quiet and my mind is clear.
I’ve been able to juggle multiple deadlines without the extra stress and even double my income from last month. If I am able to keep this going, I will be doubling my 2018 earnings in just the first 2 months of 2019.
9 Tips For Better Results With The Miracle Morning Routine
- Get a support group: it’s super beneficial to have peers to talk about the struggles and the best practices. If my motivation was slumping during the challenge, all I had to do was get in touch with the other women doing this challenge or watch their videos and I was motivated again.
- Don’t try to do too much: it’s easy to want to pack the morning with to do items because you have the time, but the Miracle Morning is about process. If you follow the 6 steps, you will get things done, but if you use it to cram things in, it won’t have the same results.
- Stay away from social media during the Miracle Morning routine. It’s too easy to get sucked in and spend the hour just scrolling.
- Make it work for you. That can mean waking up at 4am or 7am, it just depends on your lifestyle and needs.
- It’s okay to spend less time on one SAVER and more time in another. For example, I rarely spend more than a few minutes on Affirmations, Visualization and Scribing. Most of my time is dedicated to Meditation and Exercise.
- Don’t try to outdo or keep up with others. If you are doing this in a group, there will be a natural level of competition. This is great for motivation, but awful if you feel life you need to keep up with the group. If someone is active and will be training for a marathon during their exercise time, don’t feel like you need to also. If they inspire you to start running- then great, but don’t do it just to keep up with them. This is about YOU and YOUR time and goals! Remember that.
- Choose a self-improvement book for reading. I am loving the 4 Hr Workweek book I mentioned above. Fiction would be more entertaining, but I found that most of my A-HA moments this month were from the book. What I learned through it, increased the value of the Miracle Morning routine exponentially.
- Start with a positive attitude and open mind. If you start by thinking you will fail and that it will be so hard- you are right. I believe we manifest things with our minds and attitude. If on the other hand, you start the Miracle Morning routine with the intention to improve and be happier, more productive and grateful (or whatever it is you would like to achieve), you will succeed.
- Don’t let a bad day bring you down. It’s ok to not wake up early every single day. I didn’t and still saw positive results. Don’t let that one day be your clutch to quit altogether. Just plan to wake up earlier the next day and get back on track. Don’t beat yourself up about it either. Listen to your body and prioritize. If you are sick and need more rest- by all means sleep in. Rome wasn’t built in one day!
After doing the Miracle Morning Routine for 3 weeks, I stopped and documented the negative effects on that on my YouTube channel. Next, I will re-start the routine and see what the effects of it will be long-term.
I hope you enjoyed reading about experience and tips after doing the Miracle Morning Routine for 30 days.