Today, you’re in for a treat! This episode is quite a bit different than our usual format, but I promise it’s packed with a ton of value. It’s actually a replay taken from a 2-hour Clubhouse welcome party that I did for The Miracle Morning Community.
In case you’re not familiar with Clubhouse, it’s basically an audio-only chatting app where individuals can host and join different conversations. It’s sort of like a live podcast, except the major difference is that the audience is able to raise their hand and be invited onto a virtual stage to interact and participate with the speakers.
A few weeks ago, my friend Gary Henderson offered to host a welcome party as a way for me to connect and communicate with people in our community and beyond. During this 2-hour session, you’ll hear an interview between me and a group of carefully selected moderators. We then shift gears and open up the dialogue to a Q&A format so people listening could join in.
We touch on A LOT of Miracle Morning related topics, but in a way that you’ve never experienced before. The beauty of Clubhouse is that it’s not just a one-way discussion. I’m getting questions in real-time that people are struggling with, and through this platform, we get to work out the answers together.
- What does it mean to elevate our consciousness and how does that collectively elevate the consciousness of humanity?
- How to take control of your inner world. What happens on the outside doesn’t have to dictate what happens on the inside!
- Why every challenge we face is an opportunity to help other people ease their suffering.
- Why your resistance to reality is the cause of all of your emotional pain and suffering – and what you can do instead to overcome life’s biggest challenges.
- Stories from the most difficult moments of my life, including my recent struggle with depression and losing my will to live.
- Why our dependence on smartphones is detrimental to our mental and emotional well being – and where I believe we should be focusing our attention instead!
- How to transform your state of mind at ANY moment, using Emotional Optimization Meditation.
- 3 steps you can use to create real results with your affirmations and visualizations – and the 2 biggest reasons why most affirmations never come true.
- How I use the S.A.V.E.R.S to optimize my own mental and emotional well being.
- Q&A with a ton of Clubhouse listeners!
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Gary: Hal Elrod, welcome to Clubhouse.
Hal Elrod: Gary, thank you. Thank you for playing that. Funny, I got choked up, even though seeing that, envisioning that scene when I'm talking about my kids and my fear of dying and leaving them and I was getting choked up just listening to that. Thank you for having me. Everybody that is listening right now, thank you. Thank you for being here, and thank you for caring enough about yourself to show up to spaces like this, to learn and to grow and to become a better version of who you are every day. I think that that's such an important piece for all of us.
If each of us wake up every day, and we dedicate some time to becoming a better version of the person that we were when we went to bed the night before, then we bring the best version of ourselves to date, the best version of ourselves to date into our day, into every relationship that we have, into every endeavor that we're pursuing, into everything that we do. And to me, that's one of the keys to elevating the consciousness of humanity is elevating our own consciousness. And so, today, again, this is new for me, this welcome party, I really appreciate. Gary reached out a week or so ago and said, “Hey, if you ever want an official welcome to Clubhouse, I'd be happy to moderate that and set that up for you.”
And so, Gary, I'm so grateful for you and LGO for you coming to help as well, and other friends here, Brianna Greenspan, Josh Lee, Jimmy, Brandon, Payton, all of you being here as moderators. I really, really appreciate it, and I'm here to serve. I don't really have a plan. I more just showed up with a really open heart, and if anybody has any questions, or any topic that they'd love to address with me or through me, I'm happy to go wherever you guys want to take the conversation.
Gary: Yeah, I'd like to open it up to just the folks on our speaker box first, and then as we go through and we get the folks setting up here an opportunity, I'll be bringing more and more and more people, so LGO, if you'd like to kick us off with any thoughts or comments or questions you have for Hal, that will be amazing.
LGO: Yeah, I would love to. So, when I'm on stage, I often talk about how the word ambition is considered to be a dirty word, like if we want more, more money, more time, more freedom, more flexibility, more leverage, it's like, God forbid, we want to do that, but having those things allow you to show better for the people who you love and the causes you hold dear. It's not really your ambition, in fact, it's your responsibility. And one of the things you talk about in the Miracle Morning, is about how it's not selfish to want these things for yourself, but the best thing you can do for others is to show up as the very best version of yourself, for them. So, I'd love for you to talk a little bit about how you got to this place, where you've always seen yourself sort of in service to other people, but realizing that you had to be of service to yourself first.
Hal Elrod: Yeah, thank you for that, LGO. I can trace it back to my parents. When I was seven years old, I had a five-year-old sister, and I had another sister that was born at that time. And a year and a half after my baby sister Amery was born, she was born with a very rare heart condition, and she was a dwarf, so she would never grow to be over four feet tall, but it affected her heart. And one morning, I woke up on a Saturday morning, and I heard my mom screaming across the hall from her bedroom, and my dad was at work and my sister Hayley was at my grandma's house. And that morning, I ran in, and my baby sister Amery at 16 months’ old was dead in my mother's arms. My mom was giving her mouth-to-mouth resuscitation trying to revive her.
And I was a kid then, it was very weird to process what was happening, but within six months, I think my mother after losing her child, she founded a support group called Compassionate Friends, where for seven years, she led meetings every month for other parents who had lost children. And while I didn't process it or understand it at the time, I really believe that that's what planted the seed within me that every challenge that we face, every adversity that we experience, is an opportunity for us to not only learn and grow and become better, but it's an opportunity for us to help other people through our experience, to help them learn and grow and become better, to help ease their suffering.
And fast forward over a decade after that, and I was driving home from work when I was hit head on by a drunk driver at 80 miles per hour, and I was hit by another car in my driver side door at 70 miles an hour. And that night, I broke 11 bones, I bled to death, I was clinically dead for six minutes. And I came out of a coma six days later, to face this unimaginable reality that I was in a car accident, that the doctor said I would never walk again. I had permanent brain damage, I had metal rods throughout my leg and my arm and my eye, and all this is really an unimaginable new reality that I was facing.
And within a couple of weeks, I had decided that the purpose for that experience was so that I could overcome my physical limitations from the car accident, and that I could choose to be the happiest and the most grateful I'd ever been while I was in the midst of arguing was difficult experience of my life, and that through that, I could help other people overcome their challenges. And so, that's really when all of that started. If I trace it back, it was watching my parents take their tragedy and turn it into service for other people. And then when I had my tragedy, my personal tragedy, if you will, my car accident, it was the same philosophy.
And so, since then, The Miracle Morning was born out of the 2008 economic crash, where I lost my income, and I had my house foreclosed on, and I got really depressed. Then I figured out this morning ritual that changed my life so fast, it felt like a miracle. And I have a responsibility to share this with other people. And then a few years ago, I was diagnosed with cancer, and like one thing after another, knock on wood, I wanted to just have a chill life from now on, but I was given a 20% chance of surviving. And in the moment, I went okay, how can I be the happiest, the most grateful? How can I be the most mentally and emotionally sound and really thriving in every way that I possibly can while I’m in through the most difficult time in my life.
And I think that for most of us, we think bad things happen to us, I feel bad. With good things happen, I feel good. And I don't think that of my experiences, the two are not mutually exclusive. You can go through the most difficult time in your life. And right now, if you're listening to this, and you're going through adversity, or you know someone that's going through adversity, or you're afraid of adversity coming in the future, know that what happens on the outside does not have to dictate what happens on the inside, meaning the things that are out of our control, do not have to determine the one thing that's in our control, which is what we think about how we feel, what we focus on, essentially, how we experience life and how we show up as a result.
And, yeah, so for me, that message now is the biggest thing I'm trying to take to the world is that, here's how you can take complete control of your inner world and how you feel in any moment, no matter what's going on around you by focusing on just simply optimizing and taking responsibility of and control of what's going on inside of you.
LGO: Yeah, I love that. And I have to say, when I first picked up your book, when I first heard you speak, I didn't know any of the backstory. I mean, I thought I wrote a business book, and then I woke up one day and realized I wrote a personal development book, and I'm like, Oh, my God, I'm a self-helper and kind of guru, I know. And so, I came to your book, and I was like, like another self-help guru. And then, I read about the accident. And then, I read about the cancer. And then, I read about and ended up the 2008 and all that, I'm like, Oh, my God, this guy keeps getting knocked and getting that happened. You’re like the most optimistic person in the world. And I like to describe myself as like, a relentless idealist, but you make me look like Eeyore, I mean, you’re impressive.
And one of the things that you talk about is how the pain comes from the resistance that we have, right? Like pain is inevitable, but suffering is optional, as the Buddhists say, but you talk about the resistance that we put, where we tell ourselves these stories about how things should have been and that they're not, and we're resentful, and we're angry in there. And you talk about how you can't change things, and I love there's a story you tell about how somebody actually sent you a tattoo, they put on your arm, and I'd like to say we're in the tattoo club, because I actually had somebody tattoo my book cover on her arm, and I couldn't speak for like three days, I was so shocked about it.
But Seth Godin talks about you need to do something that's tattoo worthy, and man, tattoo worthy that can't change it. And so, this is just my follow-up question, and I know we have other mods on the stage, and people who are listening who want to ask questions, but I love this concept of the can't change it, and the five-minute rule. And I want you to tell us a little bit more about that, but also, when were you challenged, and really had to like, go deeper into the well, and that didn't work for you enough that you had to actually really push yourself forward on it in ways that surprised you?
Hal Elrod: Yeah, thank you for asking that LGO, and this is arguably, and I say arguably because depending on what I'm talking about I could argue, this is the most important thing, but this is arguably one of the most valuable lessons that I've learned. And it's why, in my keynote, I've been doing keynote speeches for 20 years, this is still one of the core lessons that I teach. And it's the idea that, if we ask, what do we all really want? We all just want to feel good. That's really what we want at our core. We really just want to feel good. That's why we do everything that we do. I'm going to go either display it because I think it'll make me feel better, I'm going to buy this thing because I think I'll feel good, I'm going to meditate because I'll feel good, I'm going to spend time with this person because it'll make me feel good.
Like at the core, human beings, we just want to feel good, and we tend to pursue that which makes us feel good. Sometimes, it's a faulty pursuit, we pursue pleasure and not real fulfillment, but ultimately, we're all just trying to feel good. And so, then when you look at, okay, what prevents us from the one thing that we all really want? We all really want to feel good, what prevents from feeling good and feeling bad, right? In simple terms, it's when we feel bad, what caused us to feel bad?
And I learned this lesson, when I was 19 years old, I started in sales. And my manager, my mentor taught us, he said, not his exact words, but essentially, the lesson was, look, when you go out there in your career, you're going to encounter all kinds of disappointing circumstances. You're going to have people cancel their orders, you're going to set a goal and be so close and then not hit it, you're going to have customers that cancel on you, people that are rude to you, you're just going to face all this stuff.
And he taught us the five-minute rule. He said, when you encounter something where you find yourself in emotional turmoil, you're upset, you're angry, you're disappointed, you're frustrated, you're scared, whatever the emotion is that isn't serving you, he said, set your timer for five minutes. And the five-minute rule says, you get five minutes to feel sorry for yourself to be angry, to be depressed, to be a victim, whatever it is, you give yourself five minutes to bitch, moan, complain, cry, vent, whatever you got to do, but when the timer goes off after five minutes, he said, you have to acknowledge, you can't change the thing that is now in the past, whether it was five minutes ago or five months or five decades, like it is now in the past. And if you resist it, and you wish it were different, that resistance is the cause of your continued suffering, your continued emotional pain.
So, to the degree that we resist our reality, wishing and wanting that we can change something or someone that is out of our control, determines the degree of emotional pain that we create for ourselves. No one ever taught, I mean, I had never learned that until I learned it. Most people I talked to, no matter what the age, they go, I've never really heard this before. And you think about it. Typically, when we are suffering, it's over something that we cannot change, but we think it's the same, we think it's the object that's causing the suffering. You go, well, and we justify it, either to ourselves or other people, you go, Oh, of course, I'm sad. Look at what I lost. Of course, I'm angry, did you hear what he or she said to me?
And we don't realize, well, someone could have the exact same experience you're having, but if they choose to not resist it and wish it were different, but instead of you choose to accept it, because you realize, well, I can't change it, I can't go back in time and change the thing that happened. So, there's no value on me dwelling on it and wishing it were different because that wishing is futile, it doesn't change it, it just creates internal emotional and mental suffering. So, resisting reality is the cause of all of our emotional pain. And the opposite of resistance is acceptance. So, accepting reality, which doesn't mean you're happy about, doesn't mean you go this is great, it means I accept it, because as an intelligent person, I realize I can't change it. There's no value in wishing I could change it. The only value is accepting it unconditionally as it is, in this moment, dealing with my reality, and therefore giving ourselves the gift of inner peace.
And then, from that place, that neutral, emotional state of inner peace, then you can ask yourself, what emotional state would best serve me? What should I focus on now that would best serve me? Where do I want to go? And what's the thing I can do that in my control that will move me there? And so, if I go into my own example, the car accident, the doctor thought I was in denial, because I was so happy. They literally called my parents and they said, we're concerned with your 20-year-old son. We believe he is either in denial, or he's delusional, because he's always smiling and laughing and joking and making us laugh. And we've told your son, he's never going to walk again, but he keeps telling us he is, and he needs to face reality.
And what they didn't realize was, it wasn't that I was in denial about reality, it was actually the exact opposite. I'm in a car accident, I can't change that. I might never walk again, I don't know, but I can choose to be the happiest that I've ever been, while I endure the most difficult time in my life. I can choose to be the most grateful I have ever been while I endure the most difficult time in my life. If I'm in a wheelchair for the rest of my life, I could choose to be the happiest, most grateful person that anyone's ever seen in a wheelchair. And this is a choice for all of us, right?
That no matter what's going on around us, lost a job, got a divorce, lost a loved one, we can choose how we experience the challenges in our life. And we can experience them with fear and anxiety and stress and depression, or we can experience those exact same circumstances with love and peace and hope and compassion and acceptance. Either way, the circumstance, the situation, the experience is the exact thing, but how it affects us, and how we show up for ourselves and others is completely up to us. And that's been the most valuable thing that I've learned, and then LGO, I know you asked if there was a time where I was challenged to where this didn't work for me, and I'm happy to share one of those.
LGO: Yeah, I mean, I love that because I think a lot of people are like, yeah, yeah, that's all well and good, but you're just an optimist. So, of course, it works for you, so make us feel normal. I just feel normal.
Hal Elrod: So, when I was diagnosed with cancer, for example, I was given a 20% to 30% chance of surviving. And so, if you do the math on that, reverse it, right, that I was told there was a 70% to 80% chance I was going to die. And to be clear, the reason I was in the hospital to get tested for anything that was wrong with me, my lung had been collapsed for 11 days. I had been in the ER every other day draining one to two liters of fluid from my lungs and then unable to breathe for the next 48 hours. And so, I did it again.
When I went into the hospital, my lung was failing, my kidneys were failing, and my heart was failing, I was on the verge of death. And so, I was told that I had this very dismal chance of surviving, and I was, just in case you're curious about cancer with acute lymphoblastic leukemia. And as a dad, my daughter was seven years old at the time, and my son was four. So, I translate those statistics in my mind as the doctors are telling me there's a 70% to 80% chance that I'm going to die and leave my son without a dad and leave my daughter without a father. And as a parent, me dying, I'm ready to go whenever it's my time, no problem, but the thought of leaving my kids without me to be there to be their dad, it was terrifying.
And so, I would have those moments of fear and think, well, what if no matter, what if all the positivity in the world, what if we still die? What if we still die? And the way that I handled that was replacing fear with faith. So, I had an affirmation that I was in my phone, it was on my bedside table, it was all over the place with my computer screen. And it simply said, I am committed to beating cancer and living to be 100 years old, alongside Ursula and the kids, no matter what, there is no other option.
And what I said earlier, we get to choose what we focus on. And if we focus on things that are out of our control, we feel out of control. If we focus on things that we are afraid of, we feel afraid. If we focus on a conviction, in either an effort or an outcome that we are going to do everything in our power to make that happen, no matter what, there is no other option, whatever we focus on becomes a reality. And so, I started cancer with a lot of fear. And day by day by day as I read that affirmation with conviction, with passion, with energy, and gradually, slowly, but surely, I replaced fear with faith.
And the further I got into the cancer journey, even though I was in the ER battling for my life with 104-degree fever and infections many times, I had recreated a reality of unwavering faith that I was going to heal from the cancer. And it's a separate, but related topic, I won't go deep in this, but the mind-body connection, consider that you have 40 trillion cells, give or take, and they do your bidding. If you live in fear, your cells go, Okay, I guess we're going to manifest this fear thing that you keep feeling every single day, but if you tell yourself, hey, we're going to beat this, we're going to heal, we're going to whatever it is, then ourselves, this is a very unscientific explanation, but I've done a lot of the readings scientifically, but ourselves are impartial, they do our bidding. So, in that way, we create our own reality, mentally, emotionally, physically, and even spiritually.
LGO, one last example I want to give that was the hardest time in my life was a little over a year ago, and Brianna Greenspan is on here. She was there for me on a daily when I was going through this, but after three and a half years of chemotherapy, my brain started to take a real bad turn, and I lost control of my mental faculties. I couldn't think straight, I couldn't process information, I couldn't remember anything. And as a result, at that time, I was leading a team of people, I developed extraordinary anxiety, which led to depression. I was sleeping two to four hours a night for about four months. And every tool that I use, The Miracle Morning can't change it, everything, essentially nothing worked. It might have eased my suffering, but I became suicidal. And having a wife and kids was the only thing that kept me from taking my life, but I had lost the will to live.
And every day, I would literally try to figure out, how could I take my life in a way that would have the most minimal impact on Ursula and the kids. If I drove off a bridge, but before I did that, if I recorded a bunch of videos, maybe, and I taught my kids all the most important lessons that I would teach them anyway, to guide them through life, maybe then I could end this extraordinary mental and emotional suffering where I do not want to live. I hate my life. And by the way, there was nothing wrong with my life, it was great. And that's where my entire sense of identity crashed, because nothing that I live for the last 20 years, nothing I thought, nothing worked. And I just wanted to end my life.
LGO: So, what we're doing here, while we're waiting for Hal to come back is, Hal Elrod is the writer, he's the author of The Miracle Morning, a book that helps individuals figure out how to be the very best versions of themselves all the time. And don't worry if you're not a morning person, it turns out that when he did this, he hated this book. This book has sold 2 million copies. And he actually went out and surveyed his audience, and it turned out that like 70% of them were in fact, not morning people to begin with.
So, while we're waiting for Hal to get back on, I want to tell everyone, what we're doing here is we are interviewing, we're talking to, we're welcoming the great Hal Elrod, whose book The Miracle Morning has sold over 2 million copies, 1 million of which he actually thinks probably read it, and it's changed people's lives. Hal, I see your back.
Hal Elrod: Yeah, I’m sorry. I guess I lost my signal or something.
LGO: You were right in the middle of such a good story, getting so good.
Hal Elrod: Yeah. So, this is a year or so ago that I went into the deep, deep depression and lost my will to live, and it just got increasingly worse. The longer I was on chemotherapy, the worst it got, and then when I finally got off chemo back in May, so it's kind of wrapping up the story, I started to feel back to normal. And it's been, what, seven, eight months since then, seven months. And yeah, I'm grateful to say that I feel like my old self again. I will say this, whenever the one thing that served me, and it really kept me going, and this really goes, if you've been listening to the stories that I've shared so far, it's that I have a fundamental belief that every experience that we go through in life, good or bad, is an asset, if we choose to learn from it and if we choose to use what we learn from it to benefit ourselves and other people.
And the further along, I've gone in my life and in my career, the more it's about helping other people. And when I was going through my depression, every day, I'd wake up and be like, Alright, today is the day I'm going to fix it, and months went by, and not only did it not get fixed, it just got worse. And the one thing that kept me going is when I realized, oh, there are millions of people around the world who are suffering from anxiety that I had never suffered from, from depression that I had never suffered from. And as a true servant leader, how can I help them get through what I've never been through?
So, I took solace, the more depressed I got, the more I chose to love the depression. It goes back to what I was saying earlier, which is right, we can always choose what's going on around us, and even sometimes, what's happening to us, being again, on the chemotherapy drugs, like if I was going to be on the drugs, I was going to have to deal with the consequences of those drugs, but we can choose to either resist reality, or we can choose to accept it, or even go as far as to love it, to embrace it, to go, Wow, this pain, I'm going to learn from this pain, I'm going to grow from the suffering.
And once I got to the point where I couldn't just use my normal tools to flip it around and transcend the depression and transcend the suffering, which I've been able to do easily for my entire life, once I couldn't figure out how to do that, then it was like, Okay, I'm going to embrace this suffering, I'm going to find peace in this suffering, and I'm going to learn from this suffering, and I'm going to view it from an opportunity to develop a level of empathy for other people who are suffering in these ways that I've never had before, so that once I get through this, I'll be able to understand what it's like to be in such a dark place you don't want to live, and then how I can help people kind of get through that. So, that for me is if you're suffering, and whenever I suffer, hey, what can I learn from this? And how can I use experience to help myself and other people in the future?
Gary: Thank you. Thank you so much for that.
LGO: I love that. Thank you.
Gary: Yes. Thank you so much. Brianna, do you want to say something this morning and welcome Hal?
Brianna Greenspan: Absolutely. And it’s such an honor to see you on this platform, sharing your gifts and talents with the world. Welcome, Hal. And thank you so much, Gary, and LGO for putting this together to welcome our dear friend. Hal, we've talked about this a lot in the background, but I'd love for you to elaborate on what do you think the world is calling for? And who are you choosing to be within that right now at this specific time?
Hal Elrod: Damn Bri, that's a good, deep question. So, what does the world need right now? I think the world needs us. And when I say us, I'm talking about any person here who can hear my voice now or in the future. The world needs the world, right? The world needs all of us to wake up every day and show up, as I mentioned earlier, with the qualities, the most beautiful, beneficial human qualities. And a part of me goes like, I don't like to claim that I know what's right or wrong, or that there's any kind of black or white, but I would imagine, this is from my experience, that qualities such as love and compassion and hope and optimism and service, those, from my perspective, are much more beneficial, or what the world needs than perpetual state of fear and chaos and uncertainty, because when we are in fear, we tend to play small. I know because last year, I was in the most fear I've ever been in, and I played very small, and I avoided calls and I avoided getting on these stages, and I avoided talking to other people, and I just hid because I was afraid, and I had anxiety.
And when we can get in state of love and of abundance and of optimism and of clarity, we can show up for not only ourselves and move our lives forward, but for those that we love and for those that we lead. And so, Bri, to answer the question of what does the world need, my mission is, and I shouldn't say my mission, it's really the mission of the Miracle Morning community, collectively, is to elevate the consciousness of humanity, one person at a time, one morning at a time. And of course, that's the mission that is not exclusive to our community, it's a mission that many people in the world and many leaders are on this mission to elevate consciousness.
So, what does that mean? In simple terms, one way, I believe that we can elevate our consciousness, because the way you elevate the consciousness of humanity, is by elevating the consciousness of each human. And as members of humanity, as we elevate our own consciousness each day, we are elevating the consciousness of humanity, both through our own efforts, and the ripple effect that our impact and how we show up on others has on them. And so, how do you elevate consciousness? Because that's a very, I don't know that it's a very, there's not really one wrong, right, or concrete answer to that, but I think one very simple straightforward way that we elevate our own consciousness is by moving from detrimental emotional states, or you can use the word negative, right, negative emotional states such as fear and anger and resentment, etc.
And by the way, not to say there's no value in those states, there's absolutely value in every emotional state, but I think that we can agree or discuss, is there value in dwelling in certain states over other? Is there more value to dwell in fear than there would be to dwell in love? But imagine that dwelling experiencing fear, asking yourself, what can I learn from this emotion of fear that I'm experiencing? How can I put that lesson into practice? Great, and then you're able to transcend the fear, you're able to optimize the fear almost as quickly as you started to experience it, and then move from fear to love.
So, one of the ways I think that we can elevate our consciousness is by moving from negative emotional states, detrimental emotional states, such as fear, anger, resentment, all of those to positive, to beneficial, to proactive emotional states such as love and faith and courage and empathy and forgiveness, and even motivation if you want to call that an emotional state. And so, that for me, is why the Miracle Morning is the practice that this is my life's work, because the Miracle Morning is simply a daily ritual that you do first thing in the morning to put yourself in a peak mental, emotional, physical, and spiritual state, so that you can show up as the best version of yourself, so that you can be intentional about what are the values, the qualities that I committed to embodying today for my family, for my friends, for my employees, for my clients, for my organization, for humanity?
You don't wake up and immediately do what most of us do, most people do, which is be reactive, check the phone, check social media. Allow your mental and emotional states to be affected, if not dictated by what you see in your inbox, in your news feed. Instead of starting your day with that, being reactive, starting your day on your terms with your Miracle Morning or call it whatever you want. And by the way, I should mention this real quick, if you're not familiar with the Miracle Morning, what it is specifically is six practices that are organized in an acronym SAVERS, S-A-V-E-R-S, which represent six of the most timeless, proven personal development and spiritual practices that have been used throughout the history of humanity, by some of the world's most successful, fulfilled, effective people.
And the first S in SAVERS is for silence, your meditation and/or your prayer time and/or your contemplation time. The A in SAVERS is for affirmations, which are simply written statements that articulate what you deem to be valuable and important and relevant in your life. It could be a change in thinking, it could be a change in your behavior, it could be a value that you want to embody, but using affirmations, you're keeping it top of mind every single day. And I have affirmations that remind you what's most important, as a father, as a husband, as a leader, as a friend, in my health, in my happiness, in my business, in my finances, in my spirituality, every aspect of my life, I've kind of designed this blueprint that I call affirmations, that reading it every day keeps me completely aligned with what I deem to be who I'm committed to show up as, and what's most important. The V is for visualization or visualizing, of course, the ideal outcomes of your life, and who you're committed to being today to actualize and make those outcomes into reality. The E in SAVERS is for exercise. The R is for reading. The final S is for scribing, which is journaling.
So, I just want to throw that out there. If you're not from the Miracle Morning, that is the morning ritual, those six practices. And you could do them in any order, you could do a six-minute version or a 30-minute version or a 60-minute version or whatever serves you. And you could also do half of them on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays, half of them on Tuesday, and the point is, it's completely customizable to you. And you can add to it, you can bring in other practices. Yeah, so Bri, to answer your question again, just circling back is, that for me is what the world needs.
The world needs billions of people to wake up every day and dedicate time to becoming the best version of themselves, of ourselves, to be intentional about how we show up, so that we show up with love and empathy and understanding and courage. So, that there's not this divisiveness that we've seen so much of lately. There's not this polarization between different religious groups and different ethnicities and different parties, but we all realize that we're all part of a single family, the human family that has so much more in common than we do difference. And so, how I'm committed to showing up is exactly as I just described, as a simple, single member of this human family, and just trying to do my small part in whatever I can do to, to lead by example and to encourage and inspire and help and support other people to do the thing.
Gary: That is absolutely amazing. Thank you. Thank you so much for that. Brandon, are you with us?
Brandon: I am Gary, thank you so much for the invite and for creating this room for somebody that I have truly so much admiration for how we connected a couple days ago in another room. And first thing that I want to share is just how truly appreciative I am for the mission that you're on. I feel so aligned with you and what you're about and love that you mentioned, elevating consciousness. My mission is to elevate empathy.
So, I began my professional speaking career about three and a half, four years ago, the age of 18, I’m 21 now. And I'd love to know, from your perspective, in a time when so many people, especially Gen Z, are feeling completely disconnected, and not fueled, not motivated, what would your advice to them be? And really, going beyond just kind of mindset, but maybe a couple of tactical action items would be awesome as well.
Hal Elrod: Brandon, thank you for the kind words. And I'm going to ask you a question, so get ready to, because I want to clarify a little bit what your question was. Yeah, these are the kind of words, and thank you for doing the work that you're doing that what I would call a relatively young age. It's beautiful to see. And you're an example of somebody who is elevating your own consciousness and then paying it forward and serving other people, but I wanted to ask you, so I don't know how qualified I am to answer this question, but I want to do my best and then open it up to anybody else to have an answer, as well, but when you say that, I believe that Gen Z, I have trouble keeping track of the gens at this point, but when you say Gen Z not feeling motivated, van you elaborate on why from your vantage point you think that is?
Brandon: Yeah, absolutely. Well, it's definitely universal in terms of being somewhat isolated, and life obviously, in the last year being very different, not being able to see large groups of people, go to events, things like that, parties. So, especially for young people that are in a time where either high school is everything, or college is everything, or even middle school is everything. And when you're kind of in that little bubble, the smaller things can seem like the most substantial things. So, that I think is what I mean, just feeling very and very misaligned from the life that they were on, and just coping with the reality of where we're at right now.
Hal Elrod: Gotcha. Thank you for expanding on that, and also qualify this by saying, I don't know that I'm the most qualified to answer this, but from my perspective, what you described, I think it's really, almost true for people of any age. I mean, I talked to my dad last night, and he's experiencing his own version, 63 years old, of what you just described, that Gen Z is experiencing, because I don't think anyone, regardless of any age, could have ever predicted that this is where we would be as a global society, with so much kind of uncertainty and everything being so different than it's always been.
And so, what I would say is that, when we focus on things, I said this earlier, but we focus on that, which is out of our control, we feel out of control, and for what you just described, it sounds like people are focusing on things that are out of their control, and therefore, they feel out of control. So, to me, the most fundamental answer to what do you do? Or what do you tell these people? Or what should I do? It’s focus all of your energy and attention on what's within your control. That's it. And that may have shrunk, meaning that you mentioned that people are there in their little bubble, it's like, yeah, maybe we never felt, like we had so much less in our control, because a lot of the systems that have been reliable for decades are breaking down, or might be breaking down, or have been altered in some significant way, where now, they're not quite so reliable, or we're not so sure that they're reliable, but it comes down to focusing on that which is in our control.
And the word spirituality came up for me when you were talking in terms of what Gen Z or what those might focus on, which is within like, most of us, I think, most people, myself included, we have a very dependent relationship on external stimuli. Television is a great example of that, as our smartphones, I mean, really, I've been reading right now, I'm reading about how detrimental smartphones are to our mental and emotional wellbeing, and how dependent we are. And when you think about it, like if somebody from another planet or the past came forward, and they observe, you go to the airport, you go on public, and you're like, what are all of these people doing just staring at this tiny screen for hours and hours and hours on end?
So anyway, the point being that I think and especially the younger the generation probably the more so this is true, because they grew up on technology, but I think that we've got to help people to wean themselves off, and that including starting with ourselves, that's why I'm going to do a podcast on this soon as I learn more about it by doing a digital detox and really minimizing how much I'm on my screen, I might get a flip phone. I'm exploring different options right now. But again, if we have this relationship that's dependent on the outer world or stimuli for how we feel about ourselves and about lives, then by definition, we're giving up our power and our control to external stimuli.
And so, I think that it's time to teach Gen Z, and I'm teaching my eight-year-old son and my 11-year-old daughter how to meditate every day. I'm teaching them that all of this materialism isn't real, that it's not what life is about, that life is about being your best, and connecting with other people, and serving other people, living in harmony with nature and community. That to me, like going back to our roots, going back to our roots, I'm looking for farmland right now, like, I just want to live on land, get my hands dirty. And anyone that's known me for a long time knows that I'm the last person that my whole life would ever wanted to live on the land and get dirty, but again, the point is, I'm trying to, I guess, just elaborate and give examples of the idea that if we can get Gen Z, if we can teach this at a young fundamental age, that the quality of your life has very little to do with what's going on around you, and everything to do with what's going on inside of you.
So, develop daily practices and rituals, things that you can do every day, to optimize what's going on inside of you, so that you are in a peak state, mentally and emotionally, in order to then focus on creating what it is that you want in your outer world, but it always starts with our inner world. So, that would be my advice. And I'm definitely open to any follow-up questions or anybody else sharing some perspective, as well.
Gary: I think that was absolutely amazing. And I think that all of us listening are now probably quite interested in getting a lot more of Hal Elrod on this platform, because I can just tell you, I'm just sitting here listening and taking notes and taking mental notes. And I'm like, wow, this is absolutely amazing. He's sharing so much. So, thank you Hal. Jimmy, are you with us, buddy? Do you want to welcome Hal to the platform?
Jimmy: Absolutely, Gary. Thank you so much, and Hal, man, so glad to have you here. I was introduced to your work several years ago by our great mutual friend, Isaac Stegman. And I've been a Miracle Morning practitioner for a couple years, and it’s definitely transformational, man. So, I appreciate everything you're sharing here today. I wanted to kind of chunk down to a few specifics about kind of the framework of The Miracle Morning and those SAVERS in particular.
I'm a huge, huge practitioner of visualization. And affirmations was probably one of the biggest game changers for me, in my football career, something that was a real go-to for me. And you were talking earlier about those negative states and negative emotions that a lot of us find ourselves in it at different periods of time. And I think a lot of people have probably been experiencing that over the last year for sure.
So, my question and what I'd like you to elaborate on a little bit, is how would you encourage someone that in some of those negative states and negative emotions, how could they use visualization and affirmation so that positive self-talk to shift some of those negative emotions and those negative states or some of those limiting beliefs that all of us deal with on a daily basis?
Hal Elrod: Jimmy, beautiful question, man. Thank you very much. I had dinner with Isaac Stegman last night, by the way, so small world. In fact, I think your name came up if I remember correctly. So, yeah, if you're listening, or if someone you know is listening, struggling mentally and emotionally, how can you use some of the Miracle Morning practices to help you with that? And it's actually been my biggest focus. When I was going through the depression and the anxiety last year, that was actually I transformed my Miracle Morning into an emotional optimization practice, like that was my main focus, because I felt so terrible, I felt so anxious and fearful and depressed. And I'm like, how do I feel better? So, that became my primary focus of the Miracle Morning. So, I feel very equipped to kind of answer this question.
First, actually, I want to give a couple of kind of big picture testimonies or testimonials, if you will. I have had countless people in the Miracle Morning community, readers of the book, and some of them are featured in the Miracle Morning documentary that have overcome depression, and even severe depression, and they've done it very quickly. When I created The Miracle Morning, I was depressed, and that was part of my creating, it was 2008. It had been a six-month downward spiral for me economically. I lost my income, my house being foreclosed on. And I wanted to turn things around. And it was like, my first or second day, I went from being depressed where every day, I woke up afraid that I was losing everything, because I was losing a lot. And it was only getting worse.
Within my first or second Miracle Morning, my depression, I won't say it went away completely, but it faded, it went from a 9 on a scale of 1 to 10, so like a 10. So, we’re like kind of there hanging on in the background.
Hal Elrod: We're kind of hanging on in the background. And I'll share with you why I believe that is, and then I'm going to share a couple examples of how other people have experienced similar, if even not more profound transformations in terms of their mental and emotional state. And then I'm going to give you some specific tactics on how to apply the SAVERS to do this for you. So, if you think about one reason, that one of the things that causes depression, is when we lose hope.
So, when the economy first started to crash in 2008, and I lost a couple of clients, I'm such an optimist, I'm like, whatever, no big deal, I'm going to get more clients. And then I was struggling to get more clients. And then I lost another client, and I lost another client. And every time I lost client, my hope started to get chipped away at, and then when I tried to sign a new client, and I got the objection, the same objection people are giving us to why they were canceling their coaching was the re-objection why new people weren't signing up. I used to have like an 80% closing ratio when I would talk to prospective coaching clients. And then all of a sudden, it dropped down to like a 0% ratio. And people say, I'm sorry, my business is struggling as a result of the economy. I can't afford the coaching, I just can't justify the expense.
And so, the point is, that as hope started to disappear for me, as it was chipped away at, and during those six months, I lost more and more and more hope to the point where I became hopeless. That is a cause of depression. When you feel hopeless, and whether it's hopeless, hopeless, by the way, in terms of anything that you deem important. If you're in a marriage, and you're trying to save your marriage, and your spouse is going, not, I don't think it's going to work. And then, they're like, no, it's over, there's nothing you can do or say, there is no hope, it is lost. And if you want to save that marriage more than anything, then when you lose the hope, then that can create the pressure when we lose hope.
When I did my first Miracle Morning, and I sucked at it, by the way, like I didn't know how to meditate my first day, it was new for me. Affirmations felt totally goofy and fake, because I was doing these affirmations I read on the internet. It said, I'm amazing, I'm a million, like all this random stuff. But even doing what you might call more of a mediocre morning than a Miracle Morning because again, I wasn't good at this stuff. Even though I sucked it up my first day. I gained hope, because I felt a new level of clarity and courage and confidence from that morning practice. And I went, if I start every day like this, and this was a breakthrough for me. I went, if I start every day like this, with this much clarity and energy and motivation and I'm gaining new knowledge from the readings, and I'm journaling, I'm focusing my mind, if I start every day like this, it's only a matter of time before I become the person that I need to be, that can create anything that I want for my life. And when you have hope, not hope based in delusion, but hope based in a daily practice, based in a reality, based in results, when you have that hope, then depression fades away.
So, if you saw the Miracle Morning movie, which, by the way, if you haven't, it's on Amazon, if you want to watch it, shameless promo there, there you'll see a gentleman named Keith Minick. He was the Vice President of Business Development for Turner Home Broadcasting at the time. And his wife gave birth to their son, and three hours later, their son died in their arms, in the hospital. And Keith went into a deep depression. And he read books on grief, and they didn't work. He joined support groups, nothing had worked, and he lost. He was deeply depressed, and it lasted for about a year and a half of depression.
A friend of his recommended the Miracle Morning and he read the book, and he'll tell you this in the movie. His very first Miracle Morning, his depression went away. Similar to what I experienced, that he did those practices and realized, when I do these things, I don't feel depressed, I have clarity, I have energy, I have motivation, I feel hopeful. And he said that he created a new meaning to his son's death that morning and decided he would never again let the memory of his son determine his mental emotional state. And he's done the Miracle Morning every day since.
So, I want to give you just a couple examples, and there are many, many more. In fact, actually, I'll share one more quick one. I got an email, this one put me in tears. It was a few weeks ago, and the woman said that she started in the Miracle Morning, and she wanted to get pregnant. She couldn't get pregnant, so she had affirmations around getting pregnant. And she got pregnant with triplets. She was also doing hormone therapy, so I'm not going to give the Miracle Morning credit for the pregnancy, although she actually did, but I don't know about that.
Here's what I know. So, she gave birth to triplets, four months before they were due. And they lived a week. And one weekend, two of her children died. And this is just kind of random. And I'm using two examples that are similar thing, but two of her children died. And her third child has medical issues from being born so prematurely. Her older child, Owen, is now two and a half years old, her son. And she emailed me and said, “Hal, I have to reach out to you. I've done the Miracle Morning now for four years.” And she told me her story. And she said, “I never stopped doing the Miracle Morning set for a few days while I was in the hospital, but it's what got me through the loss of my two children.” And she said, people have asked me for the last two and a half years, how could you be so strong to deal with losing two of your babies in your arms, and being there for your son? And she said, the answer has always been simple, it's always been the same, and it's a single answer. She said, when they asked me how I did it, the answer is the Miracle Morning.
So, anyway, I share all of that with you, because I'm a big believer that I look at other people and I go okay, if something worked for them, then it can work for me. Or if another person accomplished something in their life, that's evidence that we can accomplish it too. I think that we tend to create separation, like, oh, I see this person, or I listen to this person, or there's so much more positive than I am, or they have so much more energy or motivation, or they have so much more experience, or they're older and wiser, or they're younger and with more vitality, like we tend to find the differences between ourselves and other people. And then we hang our hat on the differences. And I think that it's really an important belief to go anything another human being has done, whether it's something they've overcome or accomplished or a way of being, that all that means is that it's possible for me too, it's possible for me too. So, that's why I share those stories.
So, here's the tactics. So, when it comes to silence, my favorite form of meditation that I think I made it up, I don't know, I probably heard it somewhere else, I don't know, but it's something I started doing when I was going through this depression. I call it emotional optimization meditation. And if you're taking notes, I'll give you three, I'm going to give you steps for each of these practices that you can implement right away. So, here's the way emotional optimization meditation works. Most meditations, there's infinite kinds of meditation, but most of them, it’s like follow your breath, it's quiet your mind, it's typically just kind of get into a state of nothingness, if you will, which I think is a lot of value, and that was some meditation this morning.
However, if you want to optimize your emotional state, this is how this works. Step one, ask yourself which emotional state would best serve you right now? Which emotional state would best serve me right now? Ask yourself that question. And by the way, right now is relevant. That might mean today, that might mean at this general time in your life, for example, if you're going through a really stressful period, maybe you want to feel happy, or you want to feel peaceful. If it's a Saturday morning for me, and I know the kids are going to be coming down, I’ll often say the emotional state that would best serve me is to be playful and loving. So, that's the state I want to be in right now, meaning right now, when my kids come down in the next hour, and I greet them, I want to be in that state. If it's my wedding anniversary, it might be, hey, today, I want to be in a really loving state toward my spouse, I want to feel love, and just deep love and even romance for her.
So, step one, ask yourself, what is the optimal emotional state for me to be in right now? Step two, identify a stimulus that will put you in that state. So, that might be a memory, thinking of a time when you last felt happy or at peace or playful or calm or whatever the emotional state is, focus, whatever your state is. So, that comes with a stimulus, or it could be a general, like, if I want to feel happy, for example, that's my state that I've identified. I just want to feel happy today, right now. What makes people happy? Usually, it's my kid, that's my go-to. Like, I'll just imagine my daughter Sophie and my son Halsten, and like, right now, I'm smiling ear to ear. Just the thought of them, picturing their faces, hearing their voices, I am flooded with feel good, dopamine releasing serotonin. I'm flooded with positive, happy emotions.
So, step two is identify a stimulus that will bring about that emotional state for you. And step three, is get into that state. So, you go, okay, it's the memory of this time, or this thing, or it's the thought of these people or this is the last time I felt confident. And you get into that state, you visualize it, you remember it, you go there in your mind, in your body, you get there. And then the second part of step three is, once you're in that state, you set your timer for 5 minutes or 10 minutes or 20 minutes, or however long you want to meditate. And the point is that the practice is that you simply sit in that state and go as deep in that state as you can. So, I like to say you marinate, if you will, marinate in that state.
And the scientific component of what you're doing is you are recreating and/or reinforcing neural pathways that make that state more of a default way of being for you. It's just like exercising a muscle, if you exercise certain muscle every day, it will get stronger. If you exercise an emotional state every day, it'll get stronger, it'll become your default way of being. You'll be able to access it throughout the day, or you'll just be in that state throughout the day, the more that you're in that state, but we tend to repeat our negative emotional state. If you're feeling stressful, then you create thought patterns that generate more stress, and it's a very vicious cycle. You feel stressed that creates thoughts that are stressful, which makes you feel more stressed. And we tend to go into the downward spiral, where we get into a place where we live our lives in those states. And that's why being intentional with your Miracle Morning every day, and not just showing up in whatever state you're triggered into, but rather asking yourself what emotional state would best serve me, my family, those I love, those I lead, I'm going to get into that state, and I'm going to sit in that state. I'm going to marinate if you will, for as long as I need to.
And just like you work out different muscles in your body, on any given day, you can strengthen different emotional states. And still, you literally within 30 days of doing this, if this is all you did, if your Miracle Morning was just the S in SAVERs, and all you did was the emotional optimization meditation in 30 days, you could go from being depressed to being happy, joyful, at peace. You can shift any emotional state in a shorter amount of time than you might imagine. And I'm happy to go into the A and the V, I'd love to cover those, but Jimmy, was there any follow-up to the emotional optimization meditation, before I move on to affirmation?
Jimmy: No, brother, you're hitting it out of the park. That was great. Thank you.
Hal Elrod: You got it brother. Thank you for teeing this up. Affirmation, I'm excited. These are my favorite practices of the SAVERS. And I often joke, if people were to ask, like the politically correct answer to the question, Hal, do you have a favorite of the SAVERS? The politically correct answer would probably be, well, no, they're all equally important. And while that might be true, because to each their own, affirmations are my personal favorite. And the reason is, once something's in writing, it feels very concrete. If you're just doing a practice that you're just meditating, for example, I could be doing my meditation, but I could be fighting with all sorts of different thoughts and forces that are coming in. And our thoughts tend to jump around like a pinball in our head, you're thinking one thing, and then you have, Oh, yeah, but wait, I forgot about this, wait, that thing stresses me out. And you go, No, no, no, no, no, no, let me get back to peace and joy.
So, meditating or doing visualization, you can often be pulled in different directions because you're relying on your thoughts, and there's not necessarily an anchor. Now you can have mental anchors, like mantras and things like that, but when it comes to affirmation, for me, I get to write out precisely, word for word, the thoughts, the beliefs, the mindsets, the behaviors, that I am committed to living in alignment with. And if there is a shift, which there often is, by the way, I always say keep your affirmations in a rough draft form on your computer, so that you write them out, you print them. And then I always have a pencil, and whenever I think of something to add or something to tweak, or more a word that impacts me more powerfully than the words I currently have on the page, I will update the affirmation.
I'm going to give you three steps right now to create affirmations that will produce measurable, tangible results. And Jimmy, to your point, you can use these to optimize your emotional state. Before I give you the three steps, I want to share very quickly the two biggest problems that I see with the way that affirmations are often taught, and it's been taught for decades, if not longer. Number one, we are taught, in effect to lie to ourselves until we believe the lie. And that might not be the language that I use, but I'll give you an example. If you're struggling financially, we're taught an affirmation such as something along the lines of, tell yourself, I am wealthy. And just say it over and over and over until you feel it. Until you feel it, I am wealthy, I am wealthy, I am wealthy, but the reality is, if you are not wealthy, meaning if you are using that affirmation around financial wealth, and you're actually– let’s say your bank account balance is negative and you're not producing anything, well, then when you say I am wealthy, when you consciously speak that affirmation, your subconscious is going to default on reality on truth. And you're going to say I am wealthy, and your subconscious is going to go, no, your bank account balance is negative, and you're like, no, no, shut up, I'm wealthy. Because you're not even earning income right now, and you're, no, no, stop it. I'm doing my affirmations, I am wealthy.
So, from my vantage point, my experience, the truth will always prevail. So, while there may be value in that, I'm not saying there's not, I've found it's not the optimal strategy to speak something that is false, trying to trick yourself into believing it's true before it is true. Now, there's a nuance of that which I'll share in the three steps that kind of helps you override that and accomplish the same outcome. The second problem with affirmations the way we're taught, is we're taught to affirm the promise of a better future, kind of occurring magically independent of our efforts.
So, stick with the financial track, you may have heard the affirmation, I am a money magnet. Money flows to me effortlessly and in abundance. Again, I'm not saying there is no value in that, there may be some value in it. In fact, one of the value points is that if you're struggling financially, telling yourself that money is going to magically flow into your life because you are a magnet, well, that feels good in the moment. If my reality is stressful, I don't have money right now, but oh, I get into this state where I just imagine that money is going to show up. All the pictures of dollar bills on my vision board, they're going to just magically show up in my life.
I think the reason that a lot of people like those style of affirmations is that it does give you temporary relief from your woe, from you're worry, right? Just imagining during that time, everything's going to be okay, it's going to be okay, but if you ask anybody that has built financial freedom, I think that my experience has been most people don't say, Yeah, I was just a magnet, and I stared at my vision board, yeah, it was wild, and I just started getting wealthy. I think most people would say, No, no, I actually, I guess I had to believe it was possible for me to get wealthy, but then I had to actually work hard, I had to work smart, I had to create value for the world, then other people reciprocated the value that I created and produced and marketed and gave to the world in the form of monetary compensation. That's how I built my wealth, not because I was a magnet, and it magically flowed into my life. So, those are the two challenges.
So, here's the three steps, create affirmations that are based in reality that will produce tangible, measurable results. Step one, affirm what you're committed to. I am committed to blank, you want to write a little template, I am committed to blank, no matter what, there is no other option. I am committed to blank, no matter what, there is no other option. In life, I think we can agree that we don't get what we want just because we want it. I want a million dollars. Great. So did everybody. I'm committed to generating a million dollars. Really? How? I'll get to that in a second, but I'm committed. Okay. See now you're reinforcing arguably the single most important mindset in generating a real, tangible, measurable result in any area of our life. And that is our love commitment. We don't get what we want, we get what we're committed to. Now, of course, the two go hand in hand, you do get what you want, if you are committed to do whatever it takes to create that outcome.
So, step one, affirm what you're committed to. Step two, list the reasons why, or affirm the reasons why you're committed. Affirm the reasons why you're committed. And, I don't think this is news for anyone, but like Simon Sinek made that very popular with his books on the power of why, and then that subject that our why are what fuel our outcomes, or what fuel our drive to take the actions to produce the outcomes. And so, when it comes to– I'll give you an example of these first two steps in action. When I had cancer, I already mentioned one, I had a fear that I was going to die. So, my emotional state was one of fear and uncertainty that I decided that emotional state does not serve my feeling. Being in fear, not only does it not serve my emotional well-being, it doesn't serve my healing. If I'm living in fear and sending messages of fear to myself at a cellular level, I don't want to send messages of fear, I want to send messages of healing, messages of faith.
And so, step one, for me, what I was committed to, I am committed to beating cancer and living to be 100-plus years old, alongside Ursula and the kids, no matter what, there's no other option. That was my gut check every day. And when I felt fear, I replaced the fear with faith. And slowly but surely, in fact, it wasn't that slowly, it was relatively quickly, I created a new reality of faith in what was possible, as opposed to fear of what was possible. Fear of faith. Equally, what was possible was unknown to all of us, but I decided, it's my responsibility to create my reality, physically, mentally, emotionally, in every way.
So, step one, I committed to beat cancer, no matter what, there's no other option. Step two, it's okay to have more than one why. I had five, I think, or five or six. I said I'm committed to beating cancer for Ursula, because I promised her forever in a day. I'm committed to beating cancer for Sophie and Halsten, my kids, because they need their daddy's love, leadership, and guidance, and I need theirs. I'm committed to beating cancer for my dad because he gave up everything to save me. I'm committed to beating cancer for my mom because she doesn't deserve to lose another child. I'm committed to beating cancer for myself because I want and deserve to live a long, happy, healthy life. And last but not least, I'm committed to getting beating cancer for the millions of people who are themselves battling cancer or some other disease and weren't blessed with the knowledge and the resources that I've been blessed with, and they desperately needed my love, my leadership, and my support and guidance.
And those five or six, whatever it was, those whys, that is what drove me on the days when I was in so much pain, and I was so tired, and my eye was swollen shut from infections, and I was in the hospital. Those affirmations, those whys were so much bigger than my pain, they were so much bigger than my fear. And we've got to have meaningful lives that are bigger than our lazy tendencies, bigger than our excuses, bigger than our fears, bigger than our mistakes, bigger than our obstacles. We've got to have whys that are so compelling, so meaningful, that there is no other option, we are committed to do whatever it takes to achieve the outcomes in every area of our life. And when you affirm, and actually, let me get to step three,
Step three is affirm with what specific actions you will take and when. Step three, affirm which specific actions you will take and when. So, if you look at this affirmation formula, you can apply this to any goal, every goal in your life, and I have this for every goal in my life, every outcome, affirming what I'm committed to. Affirm what you're committed to, affirm why it's deeply meaningful to you, and affirm which actions you're committed to taking and when. And again, now you can go back to the problem, lying to yourself reaffirming some magical promise that life's going to get better because you made a vision board. None of that is here. This is real, legitimate, tangible, you're affirming what you're committed to why it's meaningful, which fuels your drive, your desire, your commitment, and then you're clarifying and affirming the actions you're committed to taking.
And here's the beauty of this, the reason I love affirmations more than anything else in the SAVERS, all I have to do is live what I affirm. And that's it. That is living in my mind, that's living what your best life, that's living to your full potential, your affirmation. Articulate what your best life looks like, not based on things that are going to show up, based on the outer world. It's based on who you're committed to be, how you're committed to showing up. And again, it goes back to the one thing you can control is, who you're committed to being, and how you're committed to showing up. And so, no matter what goes on in your life, whether you hit goals, miss goals, change goals, you stay committed to the person that you've articulated in your affirmations.
And I'll wrap this up with the V for visualization, to answer Jimmy's question. And you guys, sorry, I'm long winded to get you through it, might have to do like five hours Clubhouse room in the future, but the V, visualization, similar to affirmations, I found that it's taught in an ineffective way, and it taught similar to affirmations in terms of the ineffectiveness. The way that I learned visualization was from the movie, The Secret. And I'm grateful for The Secret, I thought it was a great movie, it opened my eyes up to a lot of new ideas, but it essentially taught me that visualization is all about visualizing the outcomes you want in your life, and it left it at that.
The practice was create a vision board. So, you put the house of your dreams on your vision board, and you put a picture of someone with six-pack abs, that's one-year goal so that you look at that, and you put a picture of vacation spots that you want to go on. And we're taught that you visualize the outcome that you want. Now, here's the value in that, the value and there is value. The value in that is that if you have a goal outside of what you've ever done before, it might feel so far out of the realm of your comfort zone, or what you've done in your past that you think, I don't even– I can hardly even imagine how I'm going to get there like that, it’s so far outside of what I've done before and so far away from where I am now.
The value in visualizing that outcome is the more you see it– what goes back to the old, almost cliché adage, the more you see it, the more you believe it, the more likely you are to achieve it. Well, there is truth to that, because when you see an outcome that at first, you go man, that's out there, but if you visualize it every day, well, after a few days or weeks, it's no longer so out there, you actually have acclimated to that possibility as a reality, because you've seen it so many times that what once felt like a fantasy, now it's real. You go, yeah, I've seen it.
When I was training to run an ultramarathon, I had never run more than a mile. And I committed publicly that I would run 52 miles consecutively. And that was so far outside of running a mile, which I only did in high school PE class for, like, once a year. And so, I visualized crossing the finish line. And I actually went even further, I printed the finish line from the Atlantic City Marathon off of Google Images, so that I actually was visualizing the finish line of what I would be crossing at the exact spot I crossed it. And every day, I visualized that. And eventually, I got to a point where I went, Wow, I'm seeing this, I'm believing this, I can achieve this. Like I really think it can happen.
So, that's the value in visualizing the outcome. Here's the problem. The problem is that if you visualize an outcome over and over and over, you can start to delude yourself into thinking that it's a foregone conclusion. Therefore, removing that healthy sense of– you'd almost say, fear of, hey, if I don't train, that's not going to happen, but you're not visualizing the training with this method. You’re not visualizing the training, you're visualizing crossing the finish line, you're visualizing casting a million-dollar check, you're visualizing a giant mansion. You're not visualizing what you have to do to get there, and that's the most important part.
The first step of visualization is see the outcome, but the second part that I spend three, four, or five times as much time visualizing, and if you're taking notes, I'd write this down, visualize yourself engaged in the necessary activity, while in an optimal emotional state. Visualize yourself engaged in the necessary activity, while in optimal emotional state. So, step one is visualize it, ideal outcome, got it? Step two, visualize yourself engaged in the necessary activity, the activity that's going to get you to that, because the outcome is not magically going to happen without the activity. You want to lose 20 pounds, you better be visualizing the daily exercise, right?
So, for me, when I was training for the ultramarathon, I hated running. And think about this, very often, what happens, like life is an emotional sport. It's an emotional sport. If you can control your emotional state, then whatever you need to feel to do what you need to do, if you have control over your emotional state, then you go, Oh, I need to feel motivated right now to do the thing. And you get yourself in that state, and you feel the feeling, and you feel, you go to the thing. Life is an emotional sport. If you need to feel confident, and you're nervous, but you have the ability to control your emotional state with all of the practices that we’re talking about, do that. These are tools to control your emotional state. If you need to feel confident and you're feeling nervous, you go, Oh, okay, wait a minute, I've identified the optimal emotional state I need to be in, and it’s confident, because I'm about to go give a speech or your presentation or whatever or running Clubhouse. If you have the ability to get yourself in that state, you win, because now you get yourself in the confidence state and you go and you achieve the result. Life is an emotional sport.
So, the second part of visualization is you go, Okay, what do I need to do? So, for me, my emotion, my thing, life's an emotional sport, emotions are what stopped you. And by the way, emotions is a word. You could say feeling. Tony Robbins would say, state, your state, your mental, emotional, your inner state. So, call it whatever you want, but when I would think about running, I would go, I hate running, I don't want to run, I'm not a runner, this is going to be uncomfortable. I could do a million other things, and I would talk myself out of it, that emotional state of whatever it was, it was just the test for running. That state, when I wasn't controlling it, I would always go out or run tomorrow, raise your hand, I'm actually literally raising my hand now. Raise your hand literally or metaphorically, if you've ever talked yourself out of doing the thing you need to do, because of the way you perceive doing that thing would feel. I feel afraid to cold call people, I'm nervous to have that conversation with that person, I fear that it might affect our relationship negatively. We talk ourselves out of it because of the emotional state that we either are in or that we perceive. And when we perceive them, we then experience them. So, for me, the thought of running, I would talk myself out of it every single time.
And so, very quickly, I went okay, I saw a pattern that I keep talking myself out of running, because I've got five months to the marathon, I think I could put it off. And in our big goals, we almost always have enough time to talk ourselves out of any sense of urgency. So, I talked myself out of it, here's how I cured them. It was amazing. I then started this visualization practice. And you could almost call it emotional optimization visualization, similar to meditation I taught you earlier. So, I would visualize myself. In the morning, my alarm was set to go for a run at 7am. So, during my Miracle Morning, around 6:30am, or whatever it was, I visualized myself. I visualized, I would close my eyes, and I would see the phone sitting on my coffee table in my living room where I did my Miracle Morning. And I would imagine it going off and hear it going beep, beep, beep, beep, beep at 7am.
And then I would visualize turning it off. I’d visualize getting up and walking into my bedroom, going in the closet. I’d visualize myself getting dressed in my running clothes. And then I visualized myself walking across the– I mean, it was very detailed, I saw a movie, from the alarm going off all the way to go into that run. I visualized myself walking across the living room. And here's the most important part. I visualized myself opening my front door and looking at the sidewalk that I was going to run on, I would see my driveway and the sidewalk. And then I would put myself in a peak emotional state, I would use affirmations, I would say things like, I'm about to go for a run, I am becoming a runner, I'm not afraid to do hard things. Every step I take, I'm developing more discipline that will not only help me physically, but it will help me do everything else I want in my life. I just kind of would freestyle these affirmations. And I would kind of got into a rhythm of seeing similar ones each day, but the point was, I was getting myself in a peak emotional state to be excited to go for a run. And then I would visualize myself go, run out onto that sidewalk, feeling all of these great emotions. And while I was visualizing, I was feeling those emotions. All of this is a mental rehearsal. It's a mental rehearsal for the necessary actions that you need to take to do the things you need to do.
And again, you apply this to any area of your life. When I was in sales, I would use this process for visualizing myself getting on the phone with confidence and optimism and excitement and purpose, so that when it was time to get a phone, I would be motivated, I'd be energized, I'd be compelled. So, here's the beauty of this practice. When the alarm went off at 7am, and it was time to go for the run, instead of being in my default emotional state, which was one of resistance, which was thought of I hate running, thought of I can put this thing off until tomorrow, I got plenty of time. That's not what I rehearsed that morning through my visualization.
Now, I rehearsed turning my alarm off, getting up, going into my bedroom, going into the closet, getting dressed in running clothes, going through my living room, going to the front door, opening the front door, feeling excited to run, going on a run. And that's exactly what happened automatically, like clockwork, every time the alarm went off at 7am. There was no inner resistance. I didn't rehearse inner resistance. It's why the world's greatest athletes visualize themselves performing optimally, so that when it's game time, they don't think, they just perform because they visualized it, they rehearsed it. So, when it comes time to actually act, they just do the thing. They went there in their mind, they went there in their body, they went there in their emotions, they went there in their spirit. And they did so repeatedly through visualization over and over and over.
So, when the alarm went off at 7am, there was no inner dialogue, trying to procrastinate and put the thing off, because I didn't rehearse that. I rehearsed optimal performance in an optimal emotional state, and when the alarm went off, I did all the things that I rehearsed. And when I opened the front door to my house, and I looked down my driveway at the sidewalk, and I can see it right now, I can see it. I did it so many times, I see my car parked in the drive– I see everything, to this day, you know what, 10 years later. And the beauty of it is, as soon as I opened that front door and I stared at my sidewalk, I got flooded with a rush of positive emotion, surrounding positive emotions, realized around something I had hated doing for my entire life up until that point, I was 29, I think. I hated running for 20 some years. And in a matter of days, I overcame 20 years of a programmed belief that says I'm not a runner, a thought pattern that says I hate running, and a habitual thought pattern of procrastinating around the act of running. In a matter of days using this practice, I completely shifted my emotional state around that activity.
So, Jimmy, thank you for that question. And that was a very detailed training, if you will, on how to use those practices. And of course, the other three exercising put you in a great emotional state. If you get blood and oxygen to your brain, you've got to exercise. That's the first thing I do when I don't feel mentally or emotionally on, I go for a jog, I do jumping jacks, something. If you read a book on optimizing your emotional state, you gain new awareness, new strategies, new practices to help with that. And last but not least, when I journal, that helps you write out the, hey, here's what I'm struggling with. That's a practice I do with journaling. If I'm feeling stressed, I'll just start free writing, I'll set a timer for 20 minutes, and I'll just write what I'm feeling, why I think I'm feeling it, and what I can focus on or what I can do to change the way I'm feeling. I don't decide what I'm going to write, I just let it flow, rewriting stream of consciousness. And by the end of that scribing practice, I almost always have a solution. And I figured out I've kind of self-coached myself through whatever was affecting me, and I figured out a solution by the end of the scribing practice. So, that's how I use all of the SAVERS to optimize my mental and emotional wellbeing.
Jimmy: I got three pages of notes, man. Thank you for that, Hal. That was awesome.
Gary: That was absolutely amazing. So, I want to try something here in the audience. I'm going to turn on the hand raise for a second. And if you're getting value out of this, if you're taking notes, if you're loving hanging out here with Hal, I just want you to raise your hand, not to come up on stage right now, just to signify to us that this is giving you amazing value. Look at that. Look at that. Wow. And Hal, this is just an example of how we get a little bit of feedback from the audience. When we're in a Clubhouse room, it allows our audience to raise their hand and tell us, Hey, I'm listening. Hey, this is good. We use it for A-B polls a good bit. So, we'll say something like, raise your hand if you want A, keep your hand down if you want B. So, it's a good way to poll the audience and fill them.
You as a moderator in your room, you're allowed to turn this on, turn this off. So, if you're ever looking for a moment when you're talking, just like you would when you're giving a keynote or anything like that, where you would say, hey, raise your hand if you feel this way, you can do the exact same thing on Clubhouse by just using the hand raise.
Hal Elrod: That is brilliant. Is that little circle button with the hand on it in the middle at the bottom?
Gary: It is. Why don't you go ahead and click it right now? And then why don't you click the Edit button? And why don't you turn off hand raise?
Hal Elrod: Alright. So, where do I put the Edit– Oh, okay, so raise hand and is it like I just slide it to the left, the green thing at the top?
Gary: Yep. And just turn it off. And now you turned it off, send it off. Yep. And then clears the entire queue. So now, no one's hand is raised. And then, if you turn it back on, and you ask a question, everybody can raise their hand again.
Hal Elrod: Got it. I turned it back on, but they didn't ask the question, but they're raising their hand anyway. So, that's up to you to moderate, Gary. Thank you.
Gary: Awesome. Alright, guys, we have about 25 more minutes in the room, and we have Hal. I want to move through as many as possible, sharing a little moment, asking a quick question, anything like that that you want to share. Just saying welcome to Hal, and I'd love to go to Joshua. I know, Joshua, you and Hal have a super special relationship. So, I'd like to go to you next. And then we'll go to Debo and Alex and Derek and keep on moving through here, and then we'll bring up some people from the audience.
Joshua: I just want to say, Hal, so proud of you for figuring out how to slide that button to the right.
Hal Elrod: Thanks, Josh. I'm not real techie, but I feel like I've grown this morning and my technology abilities.
Joshua: Now, man, love it. Everyone, I'm so excited, Hal, here, man. I still remember Hal, this was 2013, a mutual friend of ours, Jeff Latham, and I was kind of coaching him at the time. He's like, Man, you gotta check out this book. It will change your life. It's from my buddy. His name's Hal Elrod. And I mean, let me say, dude, it changed my life. And I mean, it was one of those pieces that changed everything that was going on. It really, really is so important. I mean, I look back, everyone with Hal, I mean, he's taught me how to be an amazing father, being able to watch him as we are here in Austin, Texas, play volleyball, and he's on the side helping out the kids. There's just so many things, man, and I just appreciate you being here and excited to really welcome you. And if y'all get a chance, ask Hal to tell you how much he loves UFC.
Hal Elrod: I love it. Josh, thank you, man. And yeah, I appreciate the kind words and encouragement. That means a lot. And as somebody who values impact, hearing you, like hearing that story when we were playing volleyball, playing with the kids, like that, it makes me smile, man, so thanks for making me smile. Appreciate you, man.
Joshua: Of course, man. Thank you.
Gary: Awesome. Debo, are you with us?
Debo: I am so with you. I think I was probably the person who did the mouth squeeze when you gave me your hand to come on stage, so Gary, and Brianna, thank you so much for the opportunity to welcome Hal, to help out, but also just ask two really short questions. And I'll give you a bit of my background really quickly, because I know you haven't got a lot of time. So, my name is Deborah Harris, and I am mostly nonexecutive director in multimillion-pound organization that match my passions, typically around education, healthcare, financial services, and housing. I also serve women who wants to move beyond the status quo, to reach the next level of greatness, and have a voice, achieve focus, and take their seats in the boardroom, because I believe there's a critical mass that needed to have real change.
So, Hal, I want to ask you two questions, really two quick ones. One is a system question, and one is more a theory question. So, the system question is around Level 10 Life, which I know you haven't really spoken about, but maybe you could share it. You talk about emotional optimization. So, it's a system question that I'm always asked when I talk to people about Level 10 Life, to choose the 10 areas and then rank– not rank them, but rate them from 1 to 10. The question I'm always asked is, how do you set that range to make effective assessment? Is it a 5? Is it a 6? What’s the 4.68? Why is it a 7 and not a 6? So, that's the first question, which is the system. And that's probably the only one that I can put a face on and said, Oh, well, you know, you've seen it. So, I'd really love to hear your thoughts about that.
And then, just quickly pass it off to the challenge question. There is one thing about having five minutes and doing acceptance and saying, Okay, well, that's how it is, can't do anything about it. So, how do you marry that with the challenge of also wanting to address some really deep-seated issues, like the microaggressions that women face or even Black Lives Matters, or the factors that you may have institutionalized racism at work? So, Hal, how do you help to resolve the tension between those two things of saying, yep, fine, that's just the way it is, and also, then pushing through and saying, actually, no, that isn't the way it is? Those are the two questions, one is the system one, and one is the please solve the world.
Hal Elrod: Yes, Devo, thank you. So, in terms of how to determine your rating 1 to 10 when you're measuring, where am I at in the area of health on a scale of 1 to 10, where I'm at in marriage on a scale of 1 to 10? And then, that way, you can get a rating and then, revisit it in the future and watch this grow and progress, or even just to realize that, oh, wow, when I do this wheel of life, I realized I really am married, that I'm honest, and actually take the time to look, I've done some improvement. So, it is intuitively, so I don't know if my answer is going to be much different than yours. When I coach people on that or encourage, or I do it myself, it's always I rank myself lower rather than higher. So, it's like, this isn't about me, pumping myself up, being like, I'm doing awesome. It's like I would rather be 5s to 7s in every area and have enough self-theme to go, Hey, I have room to grow. So, for me, that's really my only coach for people is that, if you're killing it in an area and you feel like it couldn't get better, I would never go higher than an 8. That's like the highest I would go, if it's I feel perfect. Just to acknowledge that we never get to 10, when you're on your deathbed, it's not like there's something else you couldn't learn or improve in an area. So, really, it's just a pursuit of constant never-ending growth.
In terms of how you marry the can't change it philosophy with addressing serious issues, and that's often people go, Oh, boy, wait, but don't you want to change things? Yes. So, can't change it is really about the present moment. I can't change the color of the door that I'm staring at in my office right now, I have to accept it as it is, in this moment. I could go buy paint and change it, that's great, but most of us, again, we're resisting reality as it is, and creating this emotional inner turmoil, and then we're trying to make change from a place of fear or animosity or hatred or disgust or whatever, because we're resisting reality. So, can't change, it doesn't mean I'm not going to make changes, it means I accept reality exactly as it is in this moment, therefore, by giving myself the gift of complete inner peace around this issue, and from that place of peace and love and courage and abundance, because I'm not resisting my reality and fighting with it, from that place of emotional neutrality, I can choose the emotion as I've talked mostly about the last hour and a half, I can choose the emotion that would best serve the mission, serve the initiative, serve my highest good to show up optimally, to serve the initiatives and the mission. And so, that for me is it can't change it. I can't change what I can't change, but I can change everything else. And it's having, what's the Serenity Prayer, the wisdom to know the difference. So, yeah, beautiful questions, Debo. Thank you so much.
Debo: Thank you. That was really, really helpful. Welcome to the platform.
Gary: Thank you so much. Alex, are you with us?
Debo: By the way..
Gary: Go ahead, Debo.
Debo: Gary, can you tell him what the flashing microphones mean? Because you had the hand raised that you just need to tell him because, yes.
Gary: Yeah, I will.
Debo: Because the microphones mean that we are talking.
Gary: Yeah, so Hal, when everyone flashes their mics, so speakers, if you can clap your mic really quickly, what that means is, it's the speaker's way of saying, Hey, we like what you're saying. We're clapping for you. We're giving you flowers. We're snapping our fingers. Like we're building you up right now, because we're really diggin what you're saying.
Hal Elrod: Oh, that's cool. I should have been watching to see if anyone clap during my messages. That's great.
Gary: They did. I was watching very, very, very closely. So, Alex, would you like to welcome Hal to the platform, if you're with us? And sometimes you'll learn, Hal, on this platform, sometimes people step away because it is a true drop in audio platform. So, Derek, are you there?
Gary: Are you there, Derek? I thought I saw your microphone.
Derek: I'm here.
Gary: You want to say hi to Hal, and welcome him to the platform? I don't know if you know– do you know Hal personally?
Derek: Oh, yeah. What's up, brother?
Hal Elrod: How are you, man?
Derek: Oh, yes.
Hal Elrod: Good to see you, Derek.
Derek: You know, it's funny, a couple weeks ago, my oldest son asked me, we hadn't prayed for your friend Hal Elrod in a while. Is he okay? Because, gosh, man, you had so much going on that you were in our nightly prayers for a long time. So, it's kind of cool that he remembered and asked about you. So, it's great to hear your voice, great to see you rising above once again, and reaching so many people and impacting so many people.
One question I have for you maybe is, if you could go back in time, do you feel like any one of the SAVERS, would you deemphasize one or any of them and/or would you prioritize one that maybe didn't fit nicely in with your amazing acronym at the time, or that you've picked up since you created that framework?
Hal Elrod: Yeah, that's a great question. So, what I’d deprioritize in the SAVERS, well, for me, visualization, as passionate as I am about it, and as much clarity I have on what I feel like works and doesn't, it's actually the one that I do the least often. I don't visualize. Actually, I don't do it daily. It's something that I do kind of, it's my on-call practice, where I'm like, Alright, I've got this thing today. I really need to see myself performing optimally for it, but on any given day, I don't use it. And I think always, I hesitate to say that, only because I think we all– you get to a certain place in your discipline, for example, where if you've gotten over a lot of the things that were holding you back from taking action, and now you're taking action regularly, so maybe, you can set the visualization practice aside, but I hesitate to say that I don't do it every day. I mean, I'll always tell you the truth, but because I don't want someone to think oh, and maybe I'll just skip that one. Because if what I said earlier resonates and you go, Yeah, well, I really need to go to– I really do procrastinate on certain things. And it would help me if I was in an optimal emotional state, then by all means, that may be your most important practice. So, really, it’s not to each their own.
And in terms of what I add in the morning, I think that, sometimes I'll swap out our letters like R, instead of reading about your relationships, where I go and I snuggle with my kids in the morning. So, I think that family time is really important part of my Miracle Morning. That's how it ends is I go up and I wake up my kids and I rub their backs, and I tell them, just basically, I read affirmations that might say, you're going to have an amazing day to day, you're loved, I love you so much. Like while they're in that, I think it's in the alpha state, where they're just waking up, I'm bombarding their subconscious mind with all sorts of positive messages, while I'm physically touching them. So yes, that's part of Miracle Morning that definitely, I've added, and it's my favorite part of my Miracle Morning, spending time with the family.
Derek: Good job, brother. Good, again, to hear your voice, man. And welcome to the platform.
Hal Elrod: Thank you very much. Hey, Gary, I want to bring up Stephanie, how do I bring somebody up? Can you teach me?
Gary: Yeah, I sure can. So, all you do is you find anyone that you want, and you click on their face. So, you kind of punch their face or push their face, click on them. And then you can choose invite to speak.
Speaker: Hal, I believe Stephanie's already on the stage.
Hal Elrod: Oh, yeah, she's on the stage.
Gary: Hey, Stephanie, are you there? You can unmute yourself.
Stephanie: I am. Yes, I am here. Thank you.
Hal Elrod: By the way, let me just really quickly, Stephanie. I just want everyone, Stephanie is the lead admin and moderator for the Miracle Morning community Facebook group with 300,000 members. And she manages it all by herself right now, as we're building a team. So, much props to Stephanie, she's a huge part of our mission.
Stephanie: Thank you so much. And I'm grinning from ear to ear. And yes, I've been in your world for– I just went looked up on Amazon when I bought the book, and it was January 20, 2015. So, it's been a long time. And I also have three pages of notes, Hal, like, how is that possible? I mean, I keep learning stuff. It's amazing thing. And I don't know, if you want me to share the story I shared with you about what I did for our marriage, or ask a question, I'm ready to do either or, pal.
Hal Elrod: Whatever's on your heart, I support both. So, I would love for you to share. I think that was a beautiful story that you shared about. Yeah, yeah, please share that.
Stephanie: Okay. I'll try to make it concise. So, I've been a practitioner of the Miracle Morning, for, as I said, Gosh, six years now, it's definitely not perfect. And my husband's been kind of just watching me do it or letting me do my pace. And we had a situ– where I'm definitely more into personal growth. And sometimes I'll say, like, Hey, I bought tickets to whatever, do you want to go? And it's like, and his question always was, is this a force me or divorce me situation? And I invited him to watch the Miracle Morning launch with me, and he very willingly and happily did that. And it was at that moment where I think something clicked for him, and he understood why I had been wanting him to do it with me for so long.
And ever since that day, we've been doing the Miracle Morning together at the kitchen table. We have talked more in the last month and a half, probably than we did in the last two years. And it's completely transformed our relationship in such a powerful way. And he's added a couple of things. He does earthing, and he does smudging, he's native. So, our Miracle Morning is really special and it’s the most treasured part of my day. So, Hal, thank you for that.
Hal Elrod: Stephanie, thank you for sharing that. And it's just as beautiful the second time as it is the first time you shared. I'm just so happy for you. Yeah, so thank you for sharing that. And Steph, you have my cell phone number, you can ask me questions anytime. And I know we have limited time. Y'all, let's turn it back to Gary to open it up to the room.
Gary: Yeah, that was such a special moment. Thank you for that, Hal. And thank you for that, Stephanie. I do want to go to Travis. Are you there, Travis?
Travis: I am here. How is everybody doing?
Gary: Doing well, man. Do you want to welcome Hal to the platform in your own amazingly unique way?
Travis: Absolutely. First off, I have known Hal for a while. I met him on Ryan Moran's event. So, first off, how you doing, Hal?
Hal Elrod: Good to see you Travis.
Travis: Yeah, absolutely, man. So happy that you're here man. I definitely want to say that I appreciate all the value that you've given in the room so far, it's been really amazing. The Miracle Morning, obviously has been a gem and has been a staple in me and my wife's life for a very long time. And we've used it to the practices, and I should say, to help elevate our life, but I got one question.
So, first is, when you’ll get on my podcast? And second is, so I've run into a lot of people, because I'm in the personal development space and I work with a lot of people, but I run into a lot of– I get a lot of messages, like every day, people asking me, what do we do, when they're in such a down period, a downward spiral because of everything that's been going on. And if you have one piece of advice, let's just say you got one message you can tell, everybody that feels like they're in a downward spiral, that they're just going through a rough period, they don't know what the next steps are, what would you tell?
Hal Elrod: That's a good question. I think I would ask a lot of questions. And I would listen for a long, long, long time. And I think I would try to, and by the way, this is the new post-depression Hal, like the before-depression Hal was like, here's what you need to do, step one, step two, step three. And I think, since I went through that and felt more empathy, and I realized that people, I believe that everyone has the wisdom within them, when they follow their highest truth to come up with solutions to their own problems. And definitely, that's not to discount learning from others, for sure, but for me, when if somebody was in that place, I would ask them a series of questions, I would ask them, not that I have a list of them, but things along the lines of when was the last time you felt happy? What has changed since then? What do you think you could do that might help?
And ultimately, after I had a real conversation of a lot of listening to what they're– and by the way, the first question wouldn't be one of the things they'll have, it will be, Hey, what's going on? How are you feeling? You really empathize, you’re really connecting with that person, and really understanding what it's like to be in their world right now, because we kind of fix things from our world. And that's what I learned when I was in depression, is that the me I had always been who was happy and optimistic and can't change it, like, couldn't even understand what it was to be like, the me that I had become, or what I was going through.
And so, I think I was always trying to fix people's problems or help them fix their problems from the state that I was in, rather than really getting into their world. And I think that for us to lead someone or really help them to lead themselves out of despair, we've really got to meet them where they are, and then gradually lead them, encourage them, or again, just really prompt them to lead themselves. So, yeah, so the answer really, is that I wouldn't give them any advice, I would ask them a lot of questions, I would really try to understand where they're at, and then I would only give advice if I said, Hey, do you want me to share some thoughts on what might help you? And I think it would be different for every person, depending on why they were feeling the way they were feeling, and what makes that person happy, or the last time that they were happy. So, it’d really be a process of inquiry, more than a process of guidance.
Travis: I really appreciate that. I am definitely going to be looking forward to that interview, though.
Hal Elrod: Alright, yeah. Reach out through my website, Travis. That’s the easiest way. We'll talk offline.
Gary: Awesome. Thank you, Travis. Thank you, Hal. Rachel, are you with us?
Rachel: Hey, yeah, I'm here. So, I actually– I don't know you Hal, but I saw this room and I decided to come in here, and I've learned a lot about what you're talking about, I guess, from you. I've been taking a lot of notes here. So, I have a question about, if someone is in an environment that is maybe stressful, how do they meditate? How do they get into this morning routine? Because I am currently kind of in a stressful area, and I've grown to be, so it really upsets my health. And so, I have kind of this luxury of, Oh, I'm going to go drive up to my mom, she's in Oregon, and I'm going to, like, take whatever time I need to kind of get away and focus on myself, but I know there's people who can't do that. And if I was sicker than I am now, I wouldn't be able to do that. So, I wanted to know, what are your thoughts on, if you're in an environment that is not suitable for yourself? And I guess, kind of meditating and really focusing on your energy and your affirmations, how do you do that?
Hal Elrod: Can you clarify a little bit more, in terms of when you say it's a stressful environment, where it's hard to do Miracle Mornings, if you're driving to your mom's? Is it that you're in like a one bedroom, and there's nowhere to go to do it? Or like, logistically, what is the challenge?
Rachel: Okay, right. So, I mean, just because of the pandemic, I have been more stressed out, because I can't really go out. I'm in LA, so everything has been shut down. My health has been kind of really rapidly declining since the pandemic started, because stress and anxiety make it much worse. And so, I'm trying to get to a place that is just open in nature, because LA is very close, and I’d kind of just been stuck in a house. The city is not really a place that I'm going out, because I also have a compromised immune system. So, I need to be in like a more secluded area that's also open, if that helps you.
Hal Elrod: Yeah, honestly, Rachel, I want to turn this over to Brianna. Brianna, I think would have– so she is the co-author of The Miracle Morning Art of Affirmations. And the reason I thought of Brianna immediately is she has dealt with chronic illness her entire life and the Miracle Morning kind of transformed her life. My answer to this, so Bri, if you're ready to answer, my answer would simply be that you have to do the best with what you have. So, that means waking up earlier than everyone else to do your Miracle Morning when you have solitude, then that's the answer.
If that means doing it, I'll give you, here’s a great example. If that'd be doing it in your closet, great. I have many, many, many events that I've gone to, I stayed the night with a roommate. So, I have a friend that will go to an event together, will stay the night in the same room. And so, I can't have the light on, I can't do my Miracle Morning, but I'll wake up at four in the morning and I go into the bathroom and I shut the door and I turn the light on. And I do my Miracle Morning on the bathroom floor or in the bathtub. I've done this countless times. And so, to me, that's just an example to be resourceful because, I think, everybody has a bathroom in their house, and if that's where you do your Miracle Morning, then that's where you do it, that becomes your spot, but Bri is somebody who has experienced chronic illness her entire life. Is there anything you add to that?
Brianna Greenspan: Yeah, absolutely. Thank you so much for that question, Rachel. One I as well have a compromised immune system, and when the pandemic hit, I made the decision that I could focus on what I can't do, or I could focus on what I could do. And that opened up a realm of possibilities that I hadn't explored before about how I could serve myself, despite the circumstances that I was experiencing. And actually, we have a daily Miracle Morning room on Clubhouse, where we discuss these types of conversations on a regular basis. And so, if that's of interest to you, feel free to reach out offline. It happens every day at 7am Central.
And it's just so important for us to be in this state of mind, where we are focusing our full attention on the realm of possibilities that are actually in front of us, versus focusing our attention on what we can't do, what we wish we could do, what isn't available to us right now, focusing on the limitations of our own health condition. And as Hal said, the Miracle Morning has changed the trajectory of my life, the last 12 years has been completely different because Hal shared the Miracle Morning with me back in 2008, and my like illness to wellness journey, if you will, was featured in his documentary where I've spent an exorbitant amount of time despite the fact that I consistently do get knocked over, figuring out what do I need in my toolbox, and when do I need to apply those tools in order to pick myself up consistently. I hope that was helpful.
Rachel: It was. Thank you so much, Brianna. And thank you, Hal, also. That was really helpful.
Hal Elrod: Thank you, Rachel. Great question. Appreciate you.
Gary Henderson: Alright, everyone, we have a hard stop at one, but I just received a text from Hal that he has about five more minutes to stay on stage with us. So, I never ever, ever like to give someone an opportunity that's on stage not to get a chance to talk. So, Tony, Billy, Derrius, and Pete, I would love for you, four gentlemen, to wrap us up today. And then we'll go to Hal for some closing remarks. So, let's keep it as tight as possible and go through and welcome Hal to the stage. Tony, if you're with us. Nope. Billy, are you with us? You're up next one.
Billy: You know it, I am with you, and I am with this. And I have taken notes like the rest. Really grateful, Hal. I've got the book sitting on the desk, where I'm in my home office, that is a Miracle Morning for entrepreneurs, and your work has really helped me solidify what I do as an event leader, help a lot of organizations, and put on great experiences. And really, your work has made a big impact. So, thank you, but I'm also a freestyle rapper. So, you said two things that really fired me up, that I haven't quite heard you much talk about, but I'd like to just get a short answer to this because you said free writing and freestyle. How does Hal Elrod get to free writing and freestyle best? Like what do you do to get to that point where you're able to let your pen flow, let your mind be free? Is there anything that you found that helped you with that?
Hal Elrod: Honestly, it's just setting the timer, and not qualifying or judging anything that I write. So, the way free writing works is all thoughts, it’s usually, you start logistical to get it flowing. I woke up today at 4:30am feeling blank, feeling stressed. Why am I feeling stressed? Like, honestly, it might be because I've got that speech tomorrow, and I don't feel like I'm prepared. Well, what can I do to alleviate that stress? If I dedicate an hour today to prepare, I think that will help alleviate the stress. And it can be that fast. I’m like, wow, one minute of free writing, I just figured out why I was feeling this unconscious stress, but I didn't have it named yet. And then I figured out a solution. I put in my schedule, I'm good, I'm on to the next. So, yes, that's really it, it's just really starting with no judgment.
Sometimes, I don't know what I'm going to write about today, but I set a timer for 10 minutes. So, I might have come up with something. I'm a pretty smart guy, I'm sure something will come up. Well, what's on my schedule today? Like, again, it's not judging, not filtering, and having a timer set. And then, if you have an intention, writing that can help, having an intention of I want to work through what I'm feeling right now or work through stuff. Yeah, that's my simple strategy.
Billy: Yeah, thank you. I appreciate that.
Gary Henderson: Awesome.
Hal Elrod: Thanks, Billy.
Gary Henderson: Glenn, we skipped past you, buddy. Are you there, Glenn? If you are, I'll give you a moment, if you want to welcome Hal to the stage, and welcome him to the Clubhouse or ask him a quick question. We got five minutes left in our day today.
Glenn: Hey, man, I am here. And thank you, you brought me up a little earlier. And then I had to go into a meeting. And I was so disappointed because I was like, I've been wanting to connect with Hal for a really long time, and I had to jump into a meeting. And so, I got to the meeting, and as soon as the meeting came up, I ran back over here to Clubhouse. And I'm super stoked to say hello, Hal, it is a pleasure to connect with you, Sir. I appreciate you so very much.
Hal Elrod: Glenn, thank you, brother. It’s a great time that you and I see your image. The avatars got the Forbes cover with the word The Morning in it. So, I don't know what else is there, but I like you right off the bat.
Glenn: Well, you and I are on very, very similar missions. I believe that if we can change the way people start their day, it will make a massive impact on this planet. And so, for the last three years, I have been doing a morning show called #RiseandGrind at 5:30am, Monday through Friday, just motivation, education, inspiration, just trying to change the way people start their day. And I wrote a book called The Morning Five: 5 Simple Steps to an Extraordinary Life. We also created something here on Clubhouse called Breakfast with Champions, all of that.
So, we've been able to make an impact in tens of thousands of lives. We're not in the millions of lives level yet, but you and I have very similar stories and synergies and ways that we got out of depression and how the morning routine changed my life. And so, I'm on a mission to help change other people's lives as well, man, but I just so admire what you've been able to do, and I've been so looking forward to connecting with you.
Hal Elrod: Awesome, Glenn. Thank you, man. And we’ll definitely have to connect offline, reach out. That sounds like we are very similar, if not yet damn near identical missions. So, fantastic.
Gary Henderson: And Hal, Glenn has a– yeah, I was going to say Glenn has a room every single morning on this platform. So, if you ever wake up and you look in the hallways, Glenn runs a room Monday through Friday all about morning stuff. He has special guests coming in. He runs a fully produced TV show basically, or Clubhouse shows. So, if you're ever up, and you're cruising the hallways, pop in Glenn's room sometime. I'm sure he'd love to bring you up and have a chat there.
Hal Elrod: Awesome. I will pay attention and look out for that, Glenn. That's awesome. Thank you.
Gary Henderson: Alright, Derrius, are you here with us, buddy?
Glenn: Thank you so much, Hal. Appreciate you.
Derrius: What’s up, Hal? How's it going, buddy?
Hal Elrod: Long time no see, brother.
Derrius: I know, it's been about four days.
Hal Elrod: Yeah.
Derrius: Great to connect with you again, my friend. And like everyone said, dude, you rock and the Miracle Morning is badass. I was on Brianna's stage this morning. We were talking about morning routines. And I had a question for you. I mean I saw you in Austin last week. I am a chronic night owl. Like, it's hard for me to go to bed a decent hour, to wake up in the morning, but what is your advice for people who are kind of late to bed and rising early that that's probably their slow time or kind of, I was telling Brianna and Jimmy, like, for me, it's making the perfect cup of coffee, and just starting slow in the morning, really regimented routine. Just it's tough, I'm not awake, I'm not ready to go. What advice do you have for people in that from your Miracle Morning?
Hal Elrod: Yeah, Derrius, such a universal question for a lot of people, I'm sure. I always give the example, I usually answer that question with a real-life example, which is Pat Flynn. Most of you probably know Pat Flynn, if you haven't, he's one of the greatest human beings I know, but specifically, he's one of the top podcasters in the world with the Smart Passive Income podcast. And Pat, I was a big fan of for many years. And he reached out, he said, “Hey, a bunch of people keep recommending your book to me and that I need to have you on the show.” He said, “but I'm going to warn you, I am not a morning person, I don't want to be a morning person. I love my life. I wake up when my kids wake me up in the morning,” he said, “but I'd love to hear your perspective.”
So, I went on his show going, how in the hell am I– and I get, like Pat Flynn's making a seven-figure income, he runs marathons. He's got, what I can tell you, a great marriage, he's a great dad, and he gets woken up in the morning by his kids, like, tickling him. And I go, how the hell am I going to change this guy's mind that he should wake up early? I'm like, he's got like, the perfect life with a perfect daily ritual. And Pat interviewed me. And I shared a lot of what I shared today, and really around the Miracle Morning, and it was the idea that how you start your day, this is the premise for me, how you start your day, Derrius, sets the tone, the context, and the direction for the rest of your day.
So, if you have a peaceful, pleasant, goal-oriented, growth-oriented, focused morning, then you are in that vein and that tone, that's the direction that you take on the rest of the day. So, if you win the morning, you win the day, kind of in simplicity. And so, at the end of the interview with Pat, he said, “Hal, well, you’ve convinced me that I should at least give this a try for 30 days, I'm going to wake up one hour earlier, I'm committing to you and to my listeners. I'll wake up one hour earlier, I will post my journey on social media, and let you guys know how it goes.”
And Pat started posting while up at 5am on the treadmill, I never realized what I was missing out on during these early morning hours. And Pat is now a lifelong Miracle Morning practitioner. It's been probably five or six years, seven years since that happened. And he was in the Miracle Morning movie, and he said that what he was missing was putting himself in a peak state waking up early, not just for himself, but for his kids. So, that he didn't wake up when they woke him up, he was already in an optimal state when they woke up.
So, Derrius, what I would say is, if you watch the movie, read the Miracle Morning book, and just commit to do it for 30 days with the idea that, look, if I don't feel like it enhances my life in significant ways, I'm dropping it into 30th, I'm dropping it, like a hot potato, but you know what, worst-case scenario, I drop it. Best-case scenario, I go, wow, just like Pat Flynn. I didn't realize what I was missing out on by not taking advantage of those early morning hours. And it doesn't mean you got to wake up at 5am, it means that if you're waking up– what time you wake up now, Derrius?
Hal Elrod: Yeah, okay, so wake up at six or five, wake up at 5:30. It just means that you go to bed a little bit earlier to get up a little bit earlier, it doesn't have to be a drastic life change. So, yeah, I'd encourage trying it and getting some support, tapping into, you have some accountability, make it public that you're going to do it for 30 days, so that you're accountable. And then just see how it goes. And of course, you can text me anytime, and I'll personally encourage you along the way.
Derrius: Done, done, it’s happening, brother. Thank you.
Hal Elrod: You got it, brother. Thank you.
Gary Henderson: Awesome, Hal. And then Pete? Really tight, man. I'm sorry to cut you, but man, real tight, if you can.
Pete: Yeah, that's fine. Hal, I just wanted first of all to say I'm honored to be on the stage with you right now. I visualized this moment for all day when I knew you were coming on. I've been doing the Miracle Morning for the last five years. And yeah, you are an inspiration. And the Miracle Morning has changed my life massively. I've shifted 30 kilograms, I’m training for the London Marathon, and I found my passion and my purpose which is to bring laughter to the world. So, I want to bring laughter to a million people by the end of this year. And I just wondered, are you open to having a little, like, literally 30 seconds of laughter with me, Hal?
Hal Elrod: Absolutely. Loves some laughter.
Pete: Fantastic. So, everybody on this stage, I need everybody to open their mic, and I want everyone to take a deep breath in. Allow a long haaaaah. And this time, I want us to take a deep breath in, and let out too hard, so deep breath in, then go haaaaah. Okay, here we go. We're going to take a deep breath, and we're going to hold it tight, and we’re going to laugh like we haven’t laughed in a day. Take a deep breath in, hold it, hold it, hold it, hold it, and–
Hal Elrod: Oh, I love that so much.
Gary Henderson: Thank you so much, Pete. So, Hal, can you give us some closing remarks today to tell all of our listeners, thank you? And I just want to say from the bottom of my heart, I'm truly honored that I got to share this moment with you. Thank you for coming into the platform. I think you're going to absolutely love it. I highly encourage you to spend some time just cruising around and popping in rooms, and really exploring all the different avenues and facets that are Hal. Don't just use it for business, don't just use it for being a dad or husband, use it for every part that excites you in your life. And I think you'll find what most of us have also found is the Clubhouse is truly, truly a special platform.
There's research going on right now that’s saying that Clubhouse actually improves your mental health, where every other social network decreases your mental health. So, my ask is spend a little time exploring who you are in certain rooms that appeal to you. And I think you'll fall in love with the platform just the same as we do. My name is Gary Henderson, but I would love for Hal to give us his closing remarks. And we'll end the room with Hal.
Hal Elrod: Awesome. Gary, thank you so much for having me. And the fact that you all keep saying you’re honored to be here with me, I'm honored that you're honored really, like I'm very, very, very excited to be able to meet and connect with all of you, all the moderators, everybody that listened. I do want to mention before I forget and say my closing remarks, because otherwise, I will probably forget this. Brianna mentioned this, I do encourage everybody right now, Brianna is leading in the Miracle Morning room every morning at 7am Central, so 8am Eastern, 5am Pacific.
So, I encourage you to come join that, and I've popped in, that’s actually the only room I've been in up until this point is the Miracle Morning room, but it's a beautiful room, and she's a wonderful facilitator. So, I encourage you to check out that Miracle Morning room every day. Of course, Gary, you're becoming a Clubhouse master and really a leader in this space. I'm honored that we know each other, it's where I got to do this with you, because I'm sure many, many newbies to Clubhouse would love for Gary Henderson to host a room with them. So, thank you for that.
And the last thing I want to leave everybody with is, I always ask myself, what matters most? Like that's the question, ever since I got cancer, that's my driving question, what matters most? What matters most for me, what matters most for those I love, those I lead, what should I be focusing on right now, and what I've come back to over and over and over and over again, is that what matters most is focusing on that which is in my control and letting go of, being at peace with, accepting all of that which is out of my control. And if you think about how much time most people spend focusing on that which is out of our control, which by the way, that's as simple as when you're going to sleep at night and you're stressed over the next day, that's not in your control in those moments.
I went through a period where I didn't sleep very much for four months, I was sleeping till Friday night. And then I went, wait a minute, I'm focusing on tomorrow, I'm focusing on the next day. The only thing that I can control is going back to focusing on is going to sleep right now. The only thing in my control is my experience right now as I fall asleep. And so, now, every night, even though I got things I could stress about, I put zero energy into those things. I only focus on that which is in my control, which at that time, it's putting myself to sleep, going to bed with a peaceful heart, a calm mind, so that I sleep, rest, and rejuvenate so that I can wake up and give my best the next day.
So, with all of that, again, make sure you're staying present and aware of your focus, and putting your energy and attention into that which is in your control and always begin with your mental and emotional state. What are you thinking about? What are you focusing on? How are you feeling? How are you experiencing the world around you based on controlling your internal state? And then, therefore, how are you able to show up for the people that you love and the people that you lead?
I love all of you genuinely from the bottom of my heart. Like I said, we are all part of the human family, you are my brothers and sisters, that is what I believe. We've got a responsibility to the rest of our family. Those that don't have the blessing of connecting with each other, those out there that may not have the positive resources and the people in their life that are encouraging them or that are opening them up to what's possible when we show up with love and with courage. So, my hope, my ask is that all of us wake up every day and dedicate time to becoming the best version of ourselves. And then that way, we can take that version out into the world and truly elevate the consciousness of humanity, one person and one morning at a time. Love you all. Until next time. Thank you so much for joining.
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