Getting out of bed sucks. You have everything going against you. That feeling of warmth when you are under the covers keeps you stationary, especially in the heart of a Wisconsin winter. Getting that last minute cuddle in that you wish you could do all day ties an emotion to staying in bed. That dread when the alarm goes off. That inner voice saying 10 more minutes won’t hurt anybody. Getting up each morning is work.
Are you like me and struggle with getting out of bed? Let me guess, you’re not a morning person right? If you have been struggling to get out of bed for years and have yourself convinced that it is just your genetics fault then you must keep reading.
As a man who makes his living programming the habits of others I know that my ineptitude getting out of bed was long ago programmed into my subconscious. I remember really struggling in highschool to roll my ass out of bed and I have never changed. There are exceptions to this rule however. Most Christmases, even to this day, I pop out of bed full of energy. Or how about when I have a big exciting day planned, I'll wake before my alarm and wait for it to go off and hop out of bed. Do you experience days like these?
I never put much thought into why some days I could hop out of bed like a spring chicken but most days I am a sluggish sloth. Not until I was challenged by one of my high performing clients to the miracle morning routine for 30 days. He had just read the book, “The Miracle morning” by Hal Elrod and was eager to try it. While I am one for challenges, this one sounded particularly crappy. How does waking up daily 1-2 hours before you have to get up sound to you?
The miracle morning is a way of programming yourself to get up and get your day started in a uniquely positive way. Here is a brief overview. First, pick a time that you want to get up daily (for full experience weekends too). Once you know the time your wake up routine looks like this. Go to bed setting an intention for the next day, then when you wake up, get out of bed immediately. Once awake, do something mindless and physical like brush your teeth and then have a cold glass of water to wake the system up.Once awake you will complete 6 actions Silence, Affirmations, Visualization, physical activity, reading, and journal.
I agreed to do it with him and so we could act as each other's accountability buddies. My girlfriend also joined in which made things easier. I tracked myself daily using the metrics in the MyOdisee program. What isn’t measured isn’t managed and I wanted to manage the effect the Miracle morning would have on me. From January 5th to February 5th I decided to wake up at 6am and do 4 minutes each of silence, affirmations and visualization. Then a 20 minute workout, 15 minutes of reading and 5-10 minutes of journaling. It worked out to be just about an hour of focus in the morning for those 30 days.
So how did it go? Did my routine permanently change? Well, overall it went well and I saw improvement in my metrics. I tracked how I felt after the Morning Miracle with a 1-10 scale (with 5 being a good/average morning) and I tracked how well I lived my Mantra throughout the day. In the first week I had four days of a 5 or lower on how I felt directly after (which actually I felt was good). The following 3 weeks or so I only had 3 days at 5 or under. My mantra metrics as far as my daily awareness steadily rose as well. This is why metrics in habit formation are important, I can visually see my perceived improvements.
The other huge upside is I was always very productive in the morning after the routine. I would spend the next few hours in focused work that was almost magical. For someone who works at home like myself this is very valuable.
The downside was after I ate lunch in the afternoon I would become very tired. I woke up at 6:30 regardless of what time I fell asleep so some days I got groggy in the afternoon. I allowed myself to take a nap and normally that would recharge me. It also made me feel a strange way, like I was having two seperate days. When I would remember the morning it felt like yesterday. If you try the morning miracle routine, I would love to hear about your experience with this.
To round out this blog let me explain the 3 biggest takeaways from this challenge. First, setting my intention was a hugely valuable lesson. If I take one habitual item from this challenge it is to set my intention before I fall asleep.
To set an intention for me is to put thought into what tomorrow is going to bring. To create some excitement about whatever the day holds. Even if it is a seemingly busy and mundane day you can always re-label it in your noggin. When you are excited for the next day waking up is SOOO much easier. If you are reading this and have trouble getting up in the morning, starting with the whole miracle morning program may be difficult. I highly suggest you start setting your intentions immediately however. Please reach out for more info on this (Joshua@MyOdisee.com) if you have questions. In my opinion everyone should start with this.
Second, the affirmations were really powerful for my day. I had a clear and concise mantra that I would say every morning. This mantra was “Today I will live on the frequency of love”. Saying that for 4 minutes straight makes a meta idea into more of a concrete item. I then kept analytics on how well I did over the 30 days and I improved by an average of 1.5 points (which I find to be outstanding).
Last, but not least, the combo of working out to reading was perfect. After the quick 20 minute cardio based workout I would do my body and soul LOVED the time reading. Physically it just felt right. It doesn’t matter which order you do these actions in however I would strongly encourage reading after the physical activity.
I have determined that I am going to take aspects of the miracle morning and program them into habit. I turned out to enjoy the extra time in the morning and the peaceful nature of it. Waking up got easier and I was able to break my own narrative that “I am not a morning person.”
If you still believe this narrative but have a desire to challenge it I suggest checking out https://www.miraclemorning.com/ If you are in the Milwaukee area and want to borrow a copy of the book reach out and I would be glad to loan you one of my copies or simply, we can sit down and have a conversation to see if it would work for you.