If you read a lot of self-help, I’m pretty sure you might have come across Hal Elrod’s seminal work — The Miracle Morning. If not, go ahead and buy it! I wouldn’t call it life-changing, but many readers certainly have, so, it’s worth the shot.
I’m not a self-help junkie and don’t aspire to be one. But when one of my near and dear ones recommend a good read, I buy the book. And The Miracle Morning is a solid book on establishing routines and outlines a solid framework that anyone (yes, even you!) can apply to start tomorrow:
Here’s what it looks like:
S – silence: this could be either meditation or silence in general
A – affirmation: affirm your dreams by clarifying what you want and how you’re going to achieve it
V – visualisation: see yourself already achieving success and realising your affirmations
E – exercise: move your body
R – reading: non-fiction only, something that inspires you or helps you develop knowledge/skills/attitude
S – scribing: writing your journal
Hal cleverly brands this as Life Savers because it saved his life. It would be best if you bought the book to read more about his story.
The thing about these lifesavers is that it’s too abbreviated for my liking. It lasts around 60 minutes. If you’re looking to focus on one or two of the most critical aspects of your routine, 60-minutes is just too little. But understand this — Hal wrote this for folks who’ve been struggling to establish a routine and get into the rhythm of things.
That said, you can embrace ‘Life Savers’ even if you’ve been following a routine for quite some time. I tried it out for 14 days and realised I’m better off with my morning routine, which is as follows:
- Journaling and affirmation: 5-10 minutes
- Reading: 60-90 minutes
- Exercising: 60-90 minutes
- Writing (60-90 minutes up to the time I begin my work)
As you can tell, my morning routine’s quite intense, and I can’t possibly get away with an abbreviated morning routine. However, Hal’s Life Savers did help me be more intentional with my morning routine. I shuffled a few things around to make sure that I’m focusing on the most important thing than what feels convenient.
For example, I used to write first thing in the morning, and while that has been working pretty well, I was struggling to find time to read in the morning hours. These days, I read first thing in the morning (with my cup of coffee) and then train for some time, shower, and then write for an hour or 90 minutes before starting my work. The tweak has had a profound impact on my overall productivity and mood.
As with all routines, LifeSavers is meant to be explored and personalised as you deem fit. I’m just glad I gave it a try for a couple of weeks before integrating the principle’s core ethos into my routine. And I think that’s how we build effective habits.
I highly encourage you to try the same and give me a shout if you’re stuck. I’ll be happy to help.