Ever since my last book published (The Miracle Equation), I’ve been working on a new book that I truly believe will be my most important contribution to date. Recently, I had a bit of an unconventional idea, which is for you, me, and our community to co-create the book together.
In order to do that, I’ve already been sharing and testing concepts from the book on this podcast over the last few months, and on today’s episode I want to go one step further: I want to break down the current manuscript with you, chapter-by-chapter, and get your thoughts and feedback.
As of now, the book is tentatively titled The Miracle Life and is about showing you how to experience what I call “true freedom” by accessing your inherent ability to choose how you experience life in every moment, regardless of your circumstances.
Also, as part of the process of co-creating this book with you, I’ll be doing an “Ask Me Anything” episode soon, to learn what you most want help with. And I set up a page for you to submit any question you have for me. So, if you have a question that you’d like to ask me—any question at all—please submit it at HalElrod.com/AMA. I look forward to answering your question on an upcoming podcast episode!
- The factors that hold us back from experiencing true freedom.
- What it means to achieve the “next level” of success and fulfillment in the most important area(s) of your life—and how to make that happen.
- The value of changing the rules of how you play the game of life.
- How to find true joy in the perfection of every moment, exactly as it is.
- Why this new book will NOT end in a 30-day Challenge, but instead it will be a 30-day Sabbatical.
“Mediocrity is not an insult. It’s not something to beat ourselves up about. Mediocrity simply means that we are accepting less than we know that we truly want, deserve, and are capable of.” – Hal Elrod
“There’s nothing anyone can do or say, there’s nothing that can happen to you that causes you to be unhappy, unless you allow it.” – Hal Elrod
THIS EPISODE IS BROUGHT TO YOU BY:
- Organifi makes the highest quality nutritional products, which are made from whole food ingredients (not synthetic vitamins) that I enjoy nearly every day, and have for many years. Visit Organifi.com/Hal, and use the code HAL at checkout to get 15% off of your entire order. I hope you find something there that you love! :^)
- Self-Publishing School has enabled hundreds of members of the Miracle Morning Community (including my sister) to write and publish their first book. If you’ve ever wanted to write a book, whether to share your story, to positively impact people lives, to create a source of passive income – or all of the above – check out this free training I recently did with Chandler Bolt on how to go from “Blank Page to Published Author In As Little As 90 Days” at Self-PublishingSchool.com/Hal and turn your dream of writing a book into a reality! :^)
- Ask Hal Anything: Submit Your Question!
- The Miracle Equation
- Episode 374: How Can We Experience Heaven On Earth?
- Ask: The Counterintuitive Online Formula to Discover Exactly What Your Customers Want to Buy…Create a Mass of Raving Fans…and Take Any Business to the Next Level by Ryan Levesque
- Episode 375: What’s More Important Than Goals?
- Self-Publishing School
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Hal Elrod: Welcome to the Achieve Your Goals podcast. This is your host, your friend, Hal Elrod. And today we're going to where I'm going to give you a behind-the-scenes look at the book that I've been writing for over a year now. It does not have an official title, although today I'm going to share with you the working title and actually ask for your feedback on the title. So, I'd love to co-create this book with you. And again, I'll share more with that today. But really, I've been working on the book for a long time. I've been kind of testing or dripping out different concepts from the book in previous podcast episodes. We did an episode recently called How Do You Experience Heaven on Earth, which was all about a concept from the book. We did one on what's more important than goals. And beyond that, just over the last few months, I've been sharing pieces that are from the book. And again, it's really been just concepts that I have content on that is a little bit of content and then I actually just bullet point it and I do a full podcast episode then I take the transcript from the episode to create more of the content in the book so if that makes sense.
Anyway, so I really want to give you a behind-the-scenes kind of look at what's the book about. I break down chapter-by-chapter kind of what it's becoming right now and then ask you for any thoughts or feedback that you have, which you can leave for me underneath this episode at HalElrod.com/378. That's HalElrod.com/378 and that is today's episode. And I would love it if after the episode, leave me a comment, a question, a takeaway, etcetera. Also, today, I'm announcing I’m going to be doing an Ask Me Anything episode coming up soon and you can leave your question for me, any question that you have at HalElrod.com/AMA. And before we dive into today's episode, today's episode, I want to acknowledge it is sponsored by Organifi, who makes the highest quality nutritional supplements you can find from Whole Foods vitamins, not synthetic vitamins, and I take them nearly every single day. I have for years. I highly recommend you check out their protein powder, their probiotic. They've got stuff for focus, you name it. If you want more energy, mental clarity, and just overall want to nurture the body that takes such good care of you, go to Organifi.com/Hal. That's O-R-G-A-N-I-F-I, Organifi.com/Hal and use the code HAL at check out. You'll get 15% off your entire order. And as always, I hope you find something there that you love.
And last but not least, I want to acknowledge our sponsor. Self-Publishing School. Self-Publishing School has helped hundreds of members of the Miracle Morning community write and publish their first or their next book. And if you've ever wanted to write a book, whether it's to share your story, to just positively impact people's lives, to create a source of passive income, or help attract new customers for your business, whatever the reason that you might want to write a book is, check out the free training I recently did with Chandler Bolt on how to go from blank page to published author in as little as 90 days. And to get that training for free, head over to Self-PublishingSchool.com/Hal. That is Self-PublishingSchool.com/Hal and you can make your dream of writing a book a reality today or in the next 90 days. So, without further ado, here is a behind-the-scenes look at my next book. I hope you got a lot of value from today's episode. I hope you enjoy. Thank you so much.
Hal Elrod: Good morning, friends, or afternoon or evening, wherever you are in the world. This is Hal Elrod and, yeah, thanks for being here today. Thank you for listening. I'm going to talk today. I want to give you kind of a peek behind the curtain, behind-the-scenes look at what I've been working on for the last, gosh, it's probably over a year. It might even be going on two years now, which is my next book. And the reason I thought I would share today, I've actually been thinking about you a lot. You being I've been thinking about kind of how could I co-create this book with our community. That's a question that I've been thinking about that question for a long time and now it's getting further along. I go, “Okay. Now is kind of the time to begin implementing that idea of how might I co-create this book with our community,” with you. And what I mean by that, what that looks like is getting your feedback while I'm writing the book so that actually I can share what I'm working on in the book, share the content with you, and then get your feedback on, “Ooh, yeah, that really resonates,” or, “Ooh, Hal, also that brings up a question for me. What about this idea and what about how might you apply what you just shared in this situation that I'm in?”
So, the point is for me to have really more of an empathetic connection to you and to you who will possibly read the book someday and then just to the general person who will ever find this book really understanding more how can I help you with what you need as opposed to with what I think that you need, right? That's as an author or any content creator, you create what you think, either what you think your reader, your audience is going to benefit from. You assume, you guess, or more often than not, you just go from your own experience and go, "Hey, this really helped me so it'll probably help other people, too.” And that's great but I think that there's another level to really creating content, which is where my good friend, Ryan Levesque, kind of made popular with his book, Ask, which is just like don't guess what people need, ask them what they need. Ask them what they're struggling with. Help them with what they tell you they need, not what you guess or assume or think that they need. So, with all of that said, I thought today would be just of any day. Why not? Why not today, a day to share with you what the book is supposed to be, what it's shaping up to be, some of the working titles. And I want to share this with you, not just so I can talk about the book. And again, it's not even a book. It probably will be released in like, I don't know, six months or something, maybe more whenever it's done.
Actually, I'll tell you behind-the-scenes my target date, my hope is that I will have all of this done and ready by 12-12-2021, December 12th. It's kind of a special date. It was the date that Miracle Morning came out in 2012 on December 12th and then the movie came out in 2020 on December 12th. However, knowing how slow I write, I’m a pretty slow writer, then that might be overly ambitious. So, no one hold me to 12-12-2021. That is, in my mind, that's my deadline that I'm trying to work towards. So, anyway, the point is I want to share today in a really valuable way, I want to give you the content from the book, or obviously, it's not nearly done but I want to give you some of the high-level content and dive in a bit in a way that's really useful for you right now, in a way that really helps you right now, that really my aim with the book is to help people to really access and experience what I call true freedom. And true freedom is and I've said this in previous podcasts. In fact, I've talked in multiple podcasts before on different ideas that are going to be in the book or some of the podcasts I've done after the podcast. I go, "Ooh, I'm going to go back and read the transcript.” That's really good content for the new book. But… Where was I going with that? I forgot. So, the working title for this book and I say working because I don't know if this is it and that's part of what I want feedback on. Like when I get your feedback, I would love to hear your feedback on the title. In fact, we can start there.
If you want to leave your feedback on this episode about the title, that's the first thing you could share. Do you like the title? Do you hate the title? Let me know. And the working title is The Miracle Life. The Miracle Life. My first book, The Miracle Morning, and then followed up on that with the Miracle Equation, and then Chip Franks, my friend, Chip Franks, actually gave me the idea. He said, “Hal, I know what the title of your next book is.” I said, "What?” He said, “Well, you’ve got the Miracle Morning, which helps you become the person that you need to be to create what you want for your life. You have the Miracle Equation, which is how you create it. It's the actionable process that you use to create what you want for your life.” And he said, "It just seems like the third book in the trifecta would be The Miracle Life. This is how you live, how you actually get to live and experience the life that you really want to live.” And so, that is really the essence of The Miracle Life, true freedom. It's how do you choose, how do you consciously choose how you experience every moment of your life? Do you want to be happy? How do you choose to be happy? Do you want a lot of physical energy? How do you choose to have an abundance of physical energy? Do you want to have phenomenal relationships? How do you choose, how do you create those relationships?
So, as opposed to being at the mercy of life, “Oh, my relationship is not going the way I want it to. I'm struggling with my health. I can't figure out how to be happy,” which is how often we live, right, myself included, that we are at the mercy of life, at the effect of other people, at the effect of life. I'm upset because _____ happened. I'm hurt because this person did or didn't do that thing. We're often at the effect of our life as opposed to being the creator of our life, the creator of our life. And when I say the creator of our life, I don't just mean the creator of our circumstances. In fact, that's secondary in my mind. It's the creator of our experience, meaning whatever's happening outside of you, whatever is happening to you, whatever you're at the effect of, whatever other people are doing or saying or not doing, that you have the ability, the limitless ability to choose how you experience every moment of your life. If you want to be happy, you be happy. If you want to be sad, you be sad. Whatever you want to feel, think, experience, do, create, you choose consciously. And so, for me, that's been my, you know, if you listen to the podcast, you know that's been my work the last year is really getting to that place and I feel like I'm there at a level I've never been before.
And so, I want to read you something that I wrote the other day. And by the way, the way that I write, at least the way I've been writing this book and I guess I've written other books but the way I've been writing it is like one paragraph on one topic at a time or a page at a time. Essentially, what it means is when I'm falling asleep at night, my mind starts racing and I start thinking of things to write and I pull my phone off the dresser and I start typing and I'll type sometimes furiously with my thumbs or using voice text for 30 minutes. I'll just type on my phone for 30 minutes and then I'll wake up in the morning and I'll be like, "What did I write last night? I remember I was like in the zone. I was in the flow. It was inspired.” And then I'll pull my notes off my phone. I'll go, “Oh yeah, that's right. That was great.” And then I transfer it over to my computer to a Word document or whatever. So, the other night this is what came up for me. I wrote, I had a title come to mind or I should say a subtitle for The Miracle Life. I'll share with you a few of the preliminary ideas I've had for subtitles for The Miracle Life over the last year. I'm looking at another document I have. “Everything You Need to Know to Live the Life You've Always Wanted.” That was one of my potential subtitles. Another one was, “12 Things You Need to Know to Experience Everything You Want to Experience.” Now, I don't love these titles, by the way. These are just me getting like the essence.
When I come up with the subtitle, it's often like, “Okay. What's the essence of what the message is here for the reader? What's the essence of what this book is about?” And so, this kind of encapsulates that, “Everything You Need to Know to Live The Life You've Always Wanted.” Well, what came up for me the other day, and I don't know if this is it. I'm sharing this with you. I'm going to read you the title and I'm going to read you the four paragraphs I wrote after I wrote the title, kind of in my mind why this made sense for me. And then it was funny, I talked to my director of operations, Tiffany, today, and I read her this title and she goes, “Hal, have you thought about that it sounds kind of religious? It could be interpreted as religious.” And she said, "You already get that sometimes because of the word “miracle” in your title. People think that it's a religious book. Would you be concerned maybe with it being perceived that way?” And my answer was, "That's a great point.” Yeah. No, absolutely. Like, the essence of my message is I want it to be as universal and it's always been that way that I don't want one religion over another to go, "Oh, this is for me.” Like this message is for humanity. This message is for every human being on the planet, at least from my vantage point. That’s my intention is to create a message, to create content that every human being on the planet will be better off if they read it and if they apply it.
So, I don't ever want it to be slanted toward or interpreted in a way that, "Oh, this is a religious book only for religious people.” And if someone doesn't consider themselves religious, they go, "Well, that's not for me,” or a spiritual book, and then if someone doesn't consider themselves spiritual, they go, "Oh, well, that's not for me,” or a book for liberals or conservatives or any certain group of people. I shy away from that because I don't want to ever create any kind of, you know, we have enough division in our world right now. I want to create inclusivity. That for me is a really important value of mine, is creating inclusivity. And we're going to do a podcast. I started writing notes the other day on a podcast that I tentatively called The Politics of Humanity, where I just talk about how like we've forgotten, and I don't want to get too far off on a tangent but this is on my heart to mention. We, as a society or societies around the world, have gotten so wrapped up in identity politics that I think we've forgotten that we're all just human beings. Like, strip away all the labels and the organizations and the groups and the ideologies, strip all of those away. Whereas most people, they're not stripping them away. They are clawing into that ideology, that identity, and going, "This is who I am. And if you're different than me, then I don't believe you. I don't respect you. You should be canceled, like, whatever.”
We've created such division like stop. Strip that away. Strip away the ideologies, the political parties, the beliefs. Hey, it's me, your fellow human being. Hey, that person that you were scowling at online or across the street because they had a sign in their yard or whatever, hey, remember them? They're a human being just like you. They were born a little baby, just like you. They grew up and they went through difficult times and they were bullied and they were teased and they just wanted to fit in and they just wanted to be loved. Yeah. That other political party, that person that opposes your belief, they were just like you. And then someone introduced them to some sort of ideology, whether it was a religion or it was a political party or it was a pride in our nationality or whatever, and I'm not saying any of those are bad things. I'm just saying that when your ideology trumps your humanity, I think that we got to pause and we got to stop and we got to take another look at how we're interpreting the world, how we're interpreting our fellow human beings. When ideology trumps humanity in a society, I think it becomes a problem and I think it is a problem right now. You and I can only focus on our little inner world, right? We can only focus on how we show up.
So, I'm just putting that out there. And again, I plan on doing an episode where we go a little deeper in it but that's the general idea is just to remember to strip away the ideologies and the belief systems and the political parties and all the things and remember that we're all members of the human family. We’re all members of the human family. In fact, this will probably be part of the book, so I guess I am sharing with you a look into the new book, The Miracle Life. So, anyway, here's what I wrote the other day as far as the title, and this is the one that, Tiffany, my right-hand gal, my director of operations, this is the one that when I read her this morning, she's like, "Hal, are you concerned that people will think it's a religious book?” And I said, “Yeah. No, that's a really good point.” So, this may not be the subtitle because of that exact fact, but this is the essence or just another way of looking at the essence of the message. So, I wrote this down the other night in like a download. I got this message. It was, “The Miracle Life: It's Time for You to Experience Heaven On Earth.” And then I rewrote it to, "It's Time for All of Us to Experience Heaven on Earth.” Now, obviously, that word “heaven” can be very much attributed to religion or just a certain dogma that people can attach, right? Words only have the meaning that we give them. And so, people have certain meanings, certain attachments to certain words and certain associations to certain words.
You may have listened a few months ago, I did an episode on Heaven on Earth. In fact, let me find that for you. Here we go. It was Episode 374 and the title of the episode was How Can We Experience Heaven on Earth? If you want to listen to that, you go to HalElrod.com/374. How do we experience heaven on earth? So, essentially, I talked about that and if you want to go deep into that, you can listen to that episode. But that to me is inner freedom like that's one way that I have articulated. That's a phrase, heaven on earth, a phrase that I've used to articulate what I believe is true freedom that we were born with. We were born with freedom. The freedom like if you think about it, if you remove government and you actually just put a human being with a family in a village made up of a tribe like a few hundred years ago, we were born without all of these societal constructs that we now adhere to that, "Oh, I'm to be successful, I have to make money to be valuable.” I think that's another episode too about societal conditioning that I still am working on. I've been working on that for years but it'll be in the book. But the point is born with everything that we needed in terms of a healthy body and a planet to sustain us. Like, if you really strip away everything, that's how we got started. It was just human beings with human bodies living in tribes, supporting each other, taking care of each other, just enjoying the essence of the earth. Getting a little hippie on you. But, hey, I'm getting more hippie lately. I love it. I enjoy it. I'm getting more in touch with what really matters. I used to be a technology like, "Oh, the newest technology,” and now it's like, "Hey, I want less technology in my life. I want more nature and less technology.” Maybe we'll do an episode on that at some point.
But here we go. All right. So, I've been putting this out, drawing this out. This is what I wrote to myself. So, I wrote the title, “The Miracle Life: It's Time for You to Experience Heaven On Earth!” This is the title. This is the promise of the book, to teach people how to experience life as it is meant to be lived. True freedom, heaven on earth, even in the midst of great adversity and tragedy. It's the ultimate promise. Why not teach people how to experience heaven on earth? And why not me? Think about it. I am the perfect person to share this message with the credibility that comes from my life experience, as no one would likely argue that what I've been through in my life wasn't extremely difficult, and yet I maintained the principles that I am teaching here in order to transcend emotional devastation and actually be genuinely happy even during the most difficult times in my life. Again, this is a note to myself, by the way, just so you’re aware. This is a note to myself. Here we go.
“And I need to define what I mean by heaven early in the book, as it will be a crucial paradigm shift for the reader to go from what most people's current idea of what heaven is, a place you go after you die and are in paradise to a new paradigm that's rooted in inner freedom, i.e., the kingdom of heaven is within. But something to consider and continuously incorporate as I'm writing and titling the book is the various mindsets that people will be in as they're reading it to make sure my message speaks to everyone, because some people, many people are going to be experiencing difficult times often living in a perpetual state of fear, stress, depression, and worry. Some people will be struggling financially, some in their marriage, some as a parent and collectively, many of us are just struggling as a human being trying to navigate these times. Many people are likely suffering in some way and I want my message to be universal for nearly everyone, to help everyone. So, before I write, I need to spend a few minutes using emotional optimization meditation to remember and re-experience how I felt in 2020 when I was depressed and had extreme anxiety and was diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder. And I was severely sleep-deprived, only sleeping two to four hours a night and felt so miserable that I wanted to die.”
I'll end it there. So, I read you that because, again, this episode is behind the scenes, a sneak behind the curtain, and that's the general idea of this book is and not just the book. That's the point of me sharing this now and I'm going to do an Ask Me Anything coming up. That was another idea that I had this morning when I thought about asking you what you want to learn, what you need help with, what questions you have that I might be able to answer or shed some light on. And so, what I'm going to do is actually I don't have the setup but I'll have to make a note to do this. I'll do an Ask Me Anything page. So, if you go to HalElrod.com/AMA as in Ask Me Anything so HalElrod.com/AskMeAnything, you can submit a question. I have to set this up now. I have my team set this up before this episode goes out. Set up HalElrod.com/AMA for questions for podcast. So, if you go there, I'm going to one of these and see how it goes and I think I've done this a long time ago but I thought it would be really fun for you to ask me anything. And in the context, you can ask me anything you want. If you want to ask me something random about like, “What's your Miracle Morning like?” That's fine.
What I was thinking, though, I'm happy to answer any of that, any questions that you have, but I was thinking like questions what are you struggling with that you really need help with? Is there anything that you're struggling with? Is there any specific nuances on how you might be struggling to implement what I'm talking about right now or what I've been talking about in a recent podcast in terms of being happy despite challenging circumstances? So, maybe that's a question, “Hal, how can I be happy? I struggle to be happy because _____ is happening. Like, how do you navigate that?” So, any questions that you have and obviously, I'm not all-knowing so I'll answer the questions as best as I can. But submit your question, HalElrod.com/AMA and I will answer it on an upcoming episode. Probably, I'll put a note or I'll put a box in there. You can check if you want your name to be announced where I say, "Hey, this question is from John Smith from Oceanside, California.” You'll be able to check if you want your name mentioned or if you want it to be anonymous. I'm not attached either way. I'm fine either way. But I thought this would be a good start of how we could start moving toward co-creating this book together, where you ask me your questions and I figure out what you need help with, and then I help you or I figure out how I can help you, how I can answer those questions in a way that's meaningful and useful for you. And then I can incorporate that context into my new book and help more people.
Because if you have a question, if you're struggling with something, odds are that you're not alone. Odds are that there are probably millions, if not millions, tens of millions, hundreds of millions, over a billion people that might be struggling with what you're struggling with. So, you asking a question is not just a selfish thing for you to get an answer to your question, I want you to keep that in mind. You asking a question is actually helping. It could help countless other people that might have the same question, but either they didn't think of it, they didn't have the courage to ask it, or they didn't even know they had that question. Like it didn't come up in their mind. They didn't articulate it. But when you ask it, they go, and you might have had this happen before when somebody asked a question, you go, "Ooh, I'm so glad you asked that. Like, I did not put that together in my head but, damn, that's a good question and I need the answer to that.” Please, please, let's hear. So, you asking a question is actually a really beautiful, selfless, collectively beneficial act that you can do. So, again, if you want to ask any question of me and I'm probably going to put on the form just one question per person because I already have no idea if this is going to turn into dozens of questions or hundreds of questions or thousands of questions. I am not sure. We will find out. But, yeah, go to HalElrod.com/AMA as in Ask Me Anything and submit your question, and then I'll answer it on an upcoming episode.
And then depending on how it goes, my thought, I wrote down in my journal this morning. I journal a lot every day. Mostly I journal ideas to improve myself to be a better husband and father. I journal ideas that end up in my book, ideas that end up being my podcast. And here's what's crazy. I don't know where the ideas come from. More and more and more, over the last couple of years, I've been getting what I call downloads and it almost feels like channeling. And now that gets pretty woo-woo, I guess. That sounds kind of weird but what I mean is like I'll just be sitting there in the morning, I'll start to meditate, and I'll just get a flood of information that I can't type fast enough to get it out. And that's actually why I struggle because I do have short-term memory loss. So, I'll be typing and be like halfway through what I'm typing and then I'll think of something else and then I'll forget my original thought. Anyway, I don't take really much credit for anything that I share. I'll take credit for sharing it but I don't know where it comes from. Like where do thoughts come from? Think about that. And I know there are some analysis of like, well, things you've read in the past, information you've been exposed to, your life experiences. And while that's been true for most of my life that, sure, you have an idea and it stems from a collective matrix of all of your previous ideas and conversations and things you've learned and life experience, all of it. But I don't know if you've ever experienced that, not the former, but meaning where you just get a flood of downloads and it's like very specific information and you feel like it's being told through you to share with other people.
So, I don't know if this is unique to me. It might be. As I'm saying it out loud, it might be unique or somewhat unique. I don't know. It also might be I think it's, by the way, when I say unique to me, let me clarify that or qualify that or expand on that. What I mean is this, I don't believe it's unique to me in terms of the ability. I believe the ability is within all of us but I don't know if I guess I would invite everybody to spend time in silence every day and open yourself up to the infinite wisdom that I think is available to us at all times. So, I think it's not that like I was born with this ability or we were all born with the ability but the point is it's something that you have to develop, I believe. So, I think that's what it is. It's really developing it through your Miracle Morning. Through silence so you can quiet your mind and hear the wisdom and then writing it down what you learn and then sharing with others. And it seems to like activate the flow. It's like opening a dam and letting the water flow out or turning the faucet on. Then once you turn it on through silence and scribing, through prayer, meditation, not to mention reading and journaling, because when you're learning from other people, it also stimulates thinking within yourself. When I'm reading something, often my mind will go, "Wait a minute,” and then I will combine my life experience with that.
All right. Let me drive back into the book stuff. I just realized, hopefully, that's been valuable for you to just different ways of thinking. But I want to run you through the chapters of the book right now, and these are all very much working like a lot… Work in progress, that's what I'm looking for. Work in progress. Sorry. While I'm talking to you, I'm looking for the manuscript for The Miracle Life. So, let me know if you like that title. If you like that title, go to HalElrod.com/378. That is today's episode, HalElrod.com/378, and let me know your thoughts on the title, The Miracle Life. This is the beginning of co-creating this book. I want to co-create this book, The Miracle Life, and the subtitle: It's Time for All of Us to Experience Heaven On Earth. Do you think that would turn off people that were not religious? I don't know. Let me know what you think. I am very much interested. All right. So, here we go. The manuscript. So, here right now I’ve got, I think, 12 rough drafts of chapters. So, there's the introduction. Then there's From Mediocrity to Mastery. And so, I'm going to dive in on each of these and share some of the content. From Mediocrity to Mastery, this is something that for me, I was getting ready to go to a dads retreat, the Front Row Dads retreat, a couple of weeks ago. And that morning during a meditation, what came up for me is I am settling for a level of mediocrity with regards to being a husband and being a dad. In fact, it was realizing that I'm settling in many areas of my life. In fact, here's my journal entry. You ready? I'm not reading these ahead of time to see if I should read these to you because it's my personal entry that I don't plan on sharing but here we go. So, hopefully, there's nothing offensive in here.
“This morning I realize that I am settling for mediocrity in most areas of my life. Happiness…”
Guys, this was literally a week ago, so I just want you to be aware. And, yeah, I'll also expand on what I mean by mediocrity. If you read the Miracle Morning, you might have gotten that mediocrity is not an insult. It's not something to beat ourselves up about. Mediocrity simply means that we are accepting less than we know that we truly want, deserve, and are capable of. So, mediocrity, I'm going to write that down. Mediocrity simply means we are accepting less than we truly want, deserve, and are capable of. So, that's my definition of mediocrity and that's the context in which I am speaking of it here in my journal entry. So, here we go.
“This morning I realize that I am settling for mediocrity in most areas of my life, happiness, marriage, physical fitness, business, intellectual growth, etcetera, whereas I used to for most of my adult life strive to achieve a level of excellence in most areas of my life. I achieved excellence at Cutco as one of the top sales reps of all time. I achieved excellence when it came to physical fitness from putting a ton of muscle on when I was in my 20s and running an ultra-marathon in my 30s. I was excellent at sharing my book with other people. I focused on excellence when it came to finding the woman of my dreams. I guess most recently I have focused on being excellent as a father for Sophie and Halston, although I'd say I'm still settling for mediocrity even as a father compared to where I could be for my kids and also as a husband for Ursula. None of this is okay and I must begin changing that immediately. So, immediately begin this process of moving from mediocrity to mastery and I will spend time assessing every area of my life and writing my current situation to such problem/level of fulfillment and then defining what mastery looks like in each area and making a plan to achieve mastery in each area.”
So, that's the context of where this chapter came from, from mediocrity to mastery. And if you remember, if you read the Miracle Morning, I did a chapter in there on it was called The 95% Reality Check. And it was based on a Social Security Administration assessment or survey or whatever or statistic, I should say. It was a statistic from the Social Security Administration that said that at the end of like after retirement, only 5% of people are financially independent and the other 95% are dependent on other people to take care of them. So, they're dependent on the government or relatives or someone else to take care of them, and only 5% are free. And again, it was financial freedom but in essence, with that freedom was the freedom to do what you want, not have to depend on anybody else. And so, I talked about obviously I would say that anyone, most people, I don't want to think for others or speak for others, but I would say my guess would be most people would prefer to be in that 5% where they had freedom to live life as they wanted, to live where they wanted and do what they wanted and spend time with whomever they wanted to. So, the idea was, okay, well, what is it, nobody, no young person, young person being like when you got into the world, you're 18, you become an adult or at any age, I guess nobody wants and goes, "Yeah. I want to be dependent on other people during the last half of my life.”
I'd say everybody would say, "No, I want to be free.” And so, then I went, “Okay. Well, if that's true, then I think it's crucial that we examine what are the 95%.” What are they doing? Or I should say, what are the 5% of people that end up having that freedom at the end of their life or throughout the last half of their life, what are they doing differently than the other 95%? It seems like a fair and important question to consider. If you want to live a life of freedom, however you define freedom, it would be important to study what people who are living a life of freedom as you define it, people that are already living the way that you want to be living, the lifestyle you want, it would seem to be crucial that we study those people and we look at what are they doing that the other 95% are not. And what are the 90% doing that the 5% are not that might be putting them in a position where they are not able to have total freedom over their decisions? And some of the things we talked about, I talked about was isolating incidents was one where we think that the moment at hand and the decision we're making, we fail to realize the impact it has over who we’re becoming and the future decisions that we’ll make. So, meaning we often in isolation go, “I'm just going to eat unhealthy this one time.” But what happens is every time you do that, you give yourself permission and you cannot create a neural pathway in your brain that says it's okay to eat unhealthy. In fact, I made the decision and it tasted really good. And then often it might take until the next morning until you feel the negative effects of that decision.
But by that time, cognitive dissonance, you’ve already forgotten that it was because of what you ate because it's the next day. So, what we do is we think, "Oh, well, it’s just this one meal,” but what happens is your brain went, “Ooh, I ate unhealthy food and it tasted really good,” and then my belly was so full, I got exhausted and I fell asleep. And that's where your memory of it ends because you create cognitive dissonance between the night when you went to bed and how you feel the next day. You might feel crappy but often we don't connect it. Oh, maybe it was what I ate for dinner. So, the point in that is that when you isolate incidents, you just eating that unhealthy food once gives yourself permission to do it again, and then to do it again, and then do it again. And then all of a sudden, you look back and that one meal led to a completely different way of eating that may over time compound in health problems and lack of energy, so on and so forth. So, anyway, I don't mean to go too deep into this one idea but the idea of isolating incidents and there were others I'm trying to think of. Lack of accountability was another thing we talked about, which is if you don't have some form of accountability to follow through with the things that you have deemed important but eating right, exercising, working hard, reading, doing your Miracle Morning, doing income-producing activities if you're an entrepreneur. If you don't have someone or something that hold you accountable to that, it's really easy to let yourself off the hook.
So, these are just examples of some of the things that I identified that seem to hold people back or prevent people from being able to create a life of freedom, total freedom. I was really focused on external freedom. So, there's internal freedom or inner freedom, which is how you feel, what you focus on, how you think, what your overall mental, emotional, and physical, and spiritual experience of life is. There's that kind of inner freedom and then there's outer freedom, which is the conditions that you create for your life. And both are important. There are kind of two sides of what I call the freedom coin or what I might call the freedom coin. I don't know. There are two sides of the freedom coin and both are important. And if you say you can be really heavy on one side or the other, like there are a lot of people that focus on external freedom and people that work really hard and make a lot of money and they're really successful but if they neglected inner freedom while they pursued outer freedom, then often they don't have what really matters, which really is inner freedom. At the end of the day, it's how you feel. You can have all the money in the world and if you're miserable, if you live in a constant state of fear and stress, afraid you're going to lose your money, stress, and anxiety over what other people think of you, if that's how you're spending your time while you're outwardly successful, are you really successful? Is that really successful?
Or would the opposite be true where the person that the Buddhist monk or the person that the minimalist that doesn't have a lot but is completely at peace with what they have. They have everything that they need to be the happiest they could ever be. And it's not fancy cars or houses or titles or success as society deems it worthy but they're just happy. They wake up every day, they go out in their backyard, they listen to the birds sing, they go meditate for a while. They do the minimal amount of work that they need to do to impact other people in the world and to create enough income to sustain their minimalistic lifestyle. They spend time with their loved ones. On the outside, nobody's going, "Wow. That person has achieved extraordinary levels of success.” But that person, I would say, has achieved extraordinary levels of success. It depends on how you define success. Success for me, in fact, was my affirmations. Hold on there, right here. I'll give you another little more behind the scenes at my affirmations for this year. And they keep growing and growing and growing. They're way too long.
So, I wrote my affirmations. I titled them My Miracle Life Mastery Plan, my definition of success, loving myself and others, making family my number one priority, living my purpose, spending most if not all of my time doing things I love and experiencing heaven on earth in every moment. So that is my current definition of success that can evolve and tends to evolve regularly as I have new thoughts or ideas or insights or whatever. So, where was I? Let me get back to these notes. If you get on my computer, you would understand how my brain works. You would see like 17 programs open. It's not just me though, I've seen other entrepreneurs and their computers and they look similar, where you've got, like, 32 Internet windows open, tabs on your browser. You've got 20 or whatever, five different, this document, that document, journals, I got a gazillion things going on, but anyway, so for mediocrity to mastery is the evolution of this concept, this chapter in the Miracle Morning, the mastery of– I'm sorry, the 95% reality check. And this came again from my own journal entry that I just read to you, which is realizing that I want to achieve mastery in every area of my life.
And mastery to me isn't black and white. It really just means that I always am striving for the next level of fulfillment, of excellence in every area of my life that I'm never settling for. Yeah, I'm a good enough dad, I'm a good enough husband. Now, granted, when you achieve a certain level of mastery in an area, you can ride that for a long time, possibly forever, depending on the level of mastery, right? And what I mean by that is when you get to a point where, in a marriage, for example, as a spouse or in any relationship, let's just use marriage as an example. If you get to the point where you have figured out how to not trigger your spouse, which is what I'm working on, when you have figured out how to make your spouse, well, it's not your responsibility, make your spouse feel fulfilled and love, that’s their responsibility, but for sure, you can help, when you found out…
Here's the essence of it. When you found out how to be damn near the perfect spouse for your spouse, I say you could ride that for the rest of your life for the most part. Now, because people grow and evolve and change, I would imagine that you're going to also need to grow and evolve and change as a spouse, but my point is that you don't, it's not. This idea of mastery doesn't mean that you're constantly like, oh, my God, I'm never enough. I'm never doing good enough. I have to constantly be ah, ah, I got to juggle all these balls, I got to be a better dad, I got to be a better husband, a better wife, I got to be, I got to be. I got to do my business. I got to be healthier. I got to be right. It can feel overwhelming, but part of what I want to do in this book is to simplify this, so it's not overwhelming.
So, you go, okay, here's what mastery looks like, as in the next level of success and fulfillment in each key area of my life, I'm going to articulate and define what mastery looks like. And by the way, don't wait till the book comes out. Like you can do this right now. I'm telling you to do it. So, you identify the areas of your life that matter to you, your health, your fitness. You can combine those, but they’re really different. What you eat and once you know how much you exercise, I think they deserve their own categories. If you're a parent as a parent, for me, I have social mastery. If I can find this, I'll read you guys, social mastery because this was interesting. This just came up for me in the last couple of days. Here we go.
Social mastery. So, I realized that for me, for social mastery, I really need to focus on being more empathetic, which actually this is what inspired the idea to do an Ask Me Anything podcast because I wanted to be more empathetic. And I thought, well, the only way to really be empathetic is to understand someone's paradigm. What are you dealing with? What's going on with you? And so, that's where that came from. And so, in terms of from mediocrity to mastery, it's identifying the key areas of your life, so your health, your fitness, your relationships, each one in terms of your roles, I should say. To me, your roles are really the root of your relationships.
So, if you're a parent, that's a role. How do you achieve mastery as a parent? What does that look like? If you're a spouse, again, same thing. If you are whatever your profession is, that would be an area of mastery for you. Finances can be an area separate from profession. Profession is how you earn the money, but how do you save, invest, grow the money? How do you grow your financial situation? How do you sustain it? How do you achieve financial freedom? That's separate. It's related, but separate from just your profession. Your profession really is more how do you serve at the highest level? How do you serve the people that you serve in your profession, whatever that looks like?
So, mastery, defining what that looks like in each area, what's the next level for you? And then, asking yourself, okay, what can I actually do? What's one thing that I can do? What's the most important thing that I can do in each area to move or to achieve what I've defined as the next level for me of mastery? What can I actually do? Is it date night? Is it daily conversation? Like so, for me and my spouse, I realized that we weren't having enough talking time, like we're kind of two ships in the night kind of thing. I'm working, she's doing her thing. Even when we're together, it's often with the kids. So, we weren't getting that adult talking time. And so, now, it's something that I'm making sure on a daily basis that we go for a walk. It's a walk and talk. It's what I call it. It's a walk and talk. So, that was one simple way for me to achieve the next level of mastery in my marriage.
And the mastery, by the way, was to be more connected, closer to my spouse. That’s the next level of mastery, to be closer, to really be spending quality time where we're talking. And I'm getting to understand her worldview and what's on her mind and what she's struggling with in a really calm, thoughtful environment, thoughtful setting. And so, those are a walk and talk. So, that's one way, that for me, that next level of mastery. And there are other things that I'm going to do as well, but that for you is so important because I believe as human beings, we all have this innate drive and desire to fulfill our potential. However, most of us wake up every day, and I said this Miracle Morning, we wake up every day and life pretty much stays the same because we pretty much stay the same.
And I'll tell you, I don't know about you, but for me, when I'm the happiest, it's when I am pursuing growth and improvement, which sometimes just means pursuing a goal. I'm trying to achieve a measurable goal, but it often just means I'm doing something every day. We talked a couple weeks ago about what's more important than goals. And the short answer was behaviors. So, it's not always achieving a goal, it's going for a bike ride every day or a walk or a run or doing a walk and talk with your spouse or every morning. Now, another thing I've been doing to be a master as a dad, it's interesting, to be a master in relationships, the biggest thing, the answer is quality time. That tends to be the answer across the board.
If you want to improve your relationships with your spouse, quality time; with your kids, quality time; with your friends, quality time; with yourself, quality time; with your audience, quality time, time where you're creating space for other people to share what's on their mind and what's on their heart. And you're really listening, you're really caring, you're looking into their soul, you're putting yourself in their shoes, you're imagining what it is like to be them. And doing so, you're so present when you talk to them, when you hear them as your eyes squint, as you really consider and feel, not just what they're saying, but what they're feeling. And in doing so, you create this energetic, emotional, spiritual connection with that other person. So, for me, that's mastery, that's the next level in my roles, as a dad, as a husband. And so, I invite you to consider that, consider taking that on, but the point is mediocrity, I know I keep saying that. The point is mediocrity to mastery is that we all accept less, then we know we truly want, deserve, and are capable of in many areas of our lives and what might life look like if you were to stop settling.
And remember, I read you my journal entry. I've realized that I've been settling. I've lost a lot of the drive, like a healthy drive for improvement, self-improvement, life improvement, that I've lost a lot of that, that I had when I was younger or that I had before I had cancer, I don't exactly know. It's like the boiling frog, it's very gradual, these shifts in our lives to where we wake up one day and go, wait, what the– how the hell did they get here? When did I stop doing that? When did I start doing that? Wow. How did I get here?
So, that's the rough title/draft for Chapter 1. And I'm not going to go as in-depth on the rest of these because we spent a lot of time so far on some of these concepts, but Chapter 2 is The Five Facets of Freedom. And that's where we talk about inner freedom, where we talk about outer freedom, where we talk about society's idea of freedom, where we talk about relational freedom. Relational freedom, by the way, is freedom from anyone's ability to disrupt your inner freedom. So, imagine what your relationships would be like, think about the relationships where there's the most turmoil, that's usually at home, that’s usually with your spouse or your kids, sometimes it could be your colleagues, your coworkers, your employees, but think about the relationships where you have the most turmoil, where people really, they can push your buttons. And again, usually, that's the spouse where they can push your buttons, they can get you upset, get you angry, get frustrated with the certain person or people, or maybe it's a group of people going back to what we talked earlier about, people with certain ideologies that are different than yours, those people just really, they boil your blood, right? Now, imagine if you have the freedom, part of your inner freedom was freedom from anyone's ability to disrupt your well-being. Imagine if nothing anyone said or did had the power to negatively affect you, that you were in control of how you experienced every aspect of your life, which also included every person in your life. Yeah, nothing anyone said could hurt you, imagine that. So, anyway, that's relational freedom.
Societal freedom, we're going to talk about that on a future podcast and in the book, but it's unplugging from The Matrix, society conditioning us on what we're supposed to think, what success is, what's right and wrong, good and bad. You know, it's funny, I was talking to my daughter about this last night. She's 11, and I forgot what brought it up, I forgot what the context was that brought it up, but I said, I don’t know if she brought something up or I did, but essentially, I know where it ended, where it led to, is I said, I go think about it. I go, we do all sorts of things because society tells us it's what we're supposed to do, but who decided it’s what we're supposed to do? I go, here's an example. I said, Oh, that's right, that's right, because she said, “Dad, I'm starting to get hair on my legs and I don't ever want to shave them.” That's right. That's what she said. I go, so I don't shave them. She goes, but aren’t you supposed to shave them? Aren't girls supposed to shave them? That's what she said, and that's what triggered me. Not triggered me, but that's what triggered this line of thinking. I went, sweetie, that's a great question. I go, let's just imagine that men and women or a boy and girl are born, and we grow up and we both get hair on our legs and we both get hair in our armpits, hair on different parts of our body, and imagine your creator, imagine God said, yes, I gave hair on your legs to all the women and men and I gave hair in the armpits of all the women and men, but, but, but, whoa, whoa, whoa. There's only a reason that I gave them to the men. The women, I actually want you to shave them off. Shave them. Like, it actually…
And I started to research this morning because I actually started to incorporate this into the book, but I started doing research on like, when did that start? It was like 1912 when women started shaving their armpits because they started wearing sleeveless dresses. And I haven't gotten so deep into it, I forgot why, who said, hey, shave your armpits, but you just think about how, like, nature intended what nature intended, and then we as human beings, changed it. No, no, no, nature didn't have it right, I need to fix it. We're supposed to shave this and shave that and change this and change that, but societal freedom is tied into relational freedom, but it's freedom from (a) caring what anybody thinks, like just you doing you, you living life the way that you want to live, and if somebody else has an opinion, he goes, no, no, no, you're not supposed to do that. You go, hey, I totally respect your opinion. Thank you for sharing that. And I actually feel good doing this thing. It's not hurting anybody and it makes me feel good. And I want to live this way and I have that freedom. That’s societal freedom. Freedom where you are not being controlled or heavily influenced by societal norms just because. You can consider them. And you could actually go, yeah, I like that one. I like that. I like that rule. That makes sense to me. I can see how that benefits society as a whole. I’ll follow that one, but not just blindly following everything that everybody else does, or that the government tells you to do, or that everybody else– just because you're not thinking for yourself. Like, critical thinking is something that needs to come back.
In fact, I would encourage you, I don't know if you watch Russell Brand, but quick plug for Russell. I don't know, Russell. We're not like buddies or anything yet, but I do like him. So, hopefully, at some point, we'll make that happen, but anyway, watch Russell Brand's YouTube channel. He has been, and what made me think that this is critical thinking, Russell is one of the best critical thinkers that I have seen. And over the last year, he really focuses on current events, which means his videos have been focused on a lot of political stuff and COVID and issues in the world, but he typically doesn't take a side. In fact, maybe he never takes a side. He just asks thoughtful questions to engage our critical thinking and some of the questions for sure, like, the answer seems obvious, and if anybody says, well, he's leading with the question. You go, yeah, well, the answer is obvious. It's obvious. Like if everybody comes to the same conclusion, then I'm glad he asks that question because he’s asking questions that often we're not asking or that are being censored. Like, you can't ask these questions. So, I encourage you, if you haven't yet listened to Russell Brand’s YouTube, go watch his videos on his YouTube channel. They're fantastic. And in terms of which one, they're all, it's not any specific topic so much that I'm telling you to check out, it's the way that he approaches these topics., it's how he engages critical thinking and questions things instead of just blindly following the masses or taking everything that's told in the media at face value, like Russell is really good at critical thinking. He's a very intelligent person. And the good thing is he's a comedian. So, you're entertained the whole time you're watching the videos. So, anyway, I highly recommend checking out Russell's podcast.
So, The Five Facets of Freedom, we're going to talk about how to access true freedom. And by the way, when I'm done with this, it might be Seven Facets of Freedom, I do not know. This is all evolving. It's very early in the process. Well, not very early, but it's relatively early in the process, which is why I wanted to bring you into this now rather than later. I've also got something in that chapter which I'm not going to teach you, I'll just tease it, called the Freedom Generator. And it's simply a process. I'm trying to create really simple processes, like I did in the Miracle Morning, like the SAVERS and just really simple tools and practices and processes that you can do to easily enter into that state of total freedom, that state of heaven on earth, if you will. So, Chapter 3 is actually called Heaven on Earth. So, we've talked enough about that.
Chapter 4, and this is way outside my wheelhouse, but it's called The Four Paradigms of God. The Four Paradigms of God, and it's looking at God in a different context as he's been taught or experienced or shared or– what's the word I'm looking for? One of those, by different people throughout history, so God the creator. God is the creator is one paradigm. God is our experience is another paradigm. God is everything is another paradigm. We are God is another paradigm, which many would consider blasphemy. So, I want to explore the different paradigms of God and how that just relates to everyday life.
One thing I saw Russell do, I watched a video of him this morning, and he talked about how many people in our society are just stuck on what we can experience from our five senses. Like it's only real if you can smell it and taste it and touch it and see it and otherwise, it's not real. And yet, quantum physics has proven that is absolutely untrue, that what we can't see, touch, taste, smell and hear, what we cannot access with our five senses is infinitely more powerful and mysterious than what we can access and so, to not discount that, but to actually dive deeper into experiencing an understanding the other realms, other dimensions, the invisible. And I wonder, as I'm saying this, if some of my audience is like Powell has gone too far off the deep end.
The next chapter is on elevating consciousness. This is something I talk a lot about, that elevating the consciousness of humanity one person at a time, that is my mission in this life. And so, wanting to really bring that down to practical, actionable terms for everybody so that it's not just understandable, but again, that it's actually actionable, giving you a step-by-step formula to quickly elevate your consciousness. And so, that is something that I am working on as well.
The next chapter is on the obstacles to the miracle life. So, what is standing in between you and truly experiencing heaven on earth, even in the most difficult times of your life? And I subtitled that It's Not Your Fault because it is things like some aspects of our human nature and societal conditioning, the beliefs that have been handed down to us, that have shaped how we perceive life and why we have trouble over or enjoying it, because I'm not living the life that I was told I'm supposed to live in order to be happy. In order to do that, I need to make more money and be more successful and be more significant, and these are all the important things that I've been shown are what mean you've made it in life. And if we're not living up to those standards that society sets, then very often we haven't given ourselves permission to actually be happy. So, that's why I say it's not our fault, because you were born into a society that conditioned you to believe you had to do and be certain things in order to be happy that somebody else made up. And then actually, as we'll explore further, not right now, but at some point, those very things may be exactly what are keeping you from being happy, having the happiness, experiencing the happiness that you truly deserve, thinking that you have to do, be, or have something that you're not, when in fact, happiness is your birthright. You were born with everything that you need to be the happiest you could ever be and you have everything you need right now to be the happiest you could ever be. And it's just up to us to be present to that reality. And it takes a shift in our paradigm of what happiness is and what the rules are for us to be happy.
The next chapter is called Your Perfect Life, and it's talking about how life is actually perfect in every moment because life is not our circumstances. Life is not our circumstances. You can have a difficult life situation which are your circumstances. Yeah, life can be hard. I know from experience. I promise, I know, life can be hard, life can be scary, life can be difficult, but that's not life, that's your life situation. I should have said your life situation can be difficult, can be scary, can be hard, but your life is this moment. We covered this on a podcast a few weeks or a month or so ago. Your life is the moment. And in that way, life is perfect, the moment is always perfect, even in the midst of pain, the moment is perfect. Your life situation might be painful, but every moment is perfect. It's a paradigm.
And if you're listening and some of this sounds foreign, that's why I'm putting it in a book, and I'm still trying to articulate how I can break through the programming that you and me and all of us have been conditioned to believe. You know, that movie The Matrix was such an accurate metaphor that we're all living this life, waking up, watching TV, going to work, watching more TV, checking our phone, eating food, and we just go through the same motions of the day every day. Wake up, eat, work, entertainment, sleep, do it again. And we just go through the motions every day. And so, I’m really wanting to– and all I am is the product of countless teachers and experiences, that I'm just wanting to pay forward and share.
We're going to do a chapter on goals because goals are important to outer freedom, right? Goals are important to outer freedom. In fact, we'll probably focus it kind of on that podcast I did a couple of weeks ago called What's More Important Than Goals? I think that'll kind of be the paradigm, What's More Important Than Goals? And if you haven't listened to that yet and you want to listen to it, it was just a few episodes ago, it was Episode 375. So, HalElrod.com/375, if you want to hear What's More Important Than Goals?
And then, what else? I'm going to give you guys Miracle Life meditations. I have been working on developing, I think I'm up to five or six different meditations right now and I want to share those with you in a way where it's going to be kind of how you implement everything that you're learning in the book. These are each unique meditation, each with their own purpose designed to condition this new way of thinking or being. So, one you've already heard, I've talked about this a lot, emotional optimization meditation. I've never had that in a book, though. It'll be in this book. I also have an unwavering faith meditation that helps you strengthen your faith in what you want and what's possible to replace your fear of what you don't want. I also have a conscious music meditation, which is one of my favorites. There are specific artists that I listen to, and I listen to them in a meditative state. And then when the song is over, I meditate on the message in the song for another 5, 10, 15, or 20 minutes.
There's also present moment meditation, which is really just conditioning you to find that spot that is this moment, to find the perfection, the essence in this moment, because remember, life is the moment, right now. You feel that? Whatever you're hearing right now, whether it's my voice or the silence, between my words, or that garbage truck that I'm hearing in my neighborhood that's making these loud noises, whatever you're hearing, that's your life. Whatever you see in this moment, that's your life. And most of us miss it. Most of us aren't living life. We're thinking about life and we're thinking about the future or we're thinking about the past rather than being fully present to the perfection of this moment.
When I'm in my yard each day and I go for a walk and I pick up some part of nature and I just stare at it and I go, this moment is perfect. In fact, I'll give you guys a little– here's a little tip, something I've been doing lately, this is how I get into the present moment. I say, this moment is perfect because, and then I run through all of my senses. And so, let me give you an example. So, I go, this moment is perfect because I'm staring at my gratitude board on my wall with all the notes from all the people that have sent to me. Actually, no, let me redo that. I don't want it to be that because the context of a gratitude board makes it easy.
Now, my life is perfect because I'm staring at the back of my hand right now. In fact, you can do this with me. This moment is perfect. This moment is perfect because I'm staring at the back of my hand right now. And take a deep breath and feel that. This moment is perfect because I hear that garbage truck. It's perfect because I feel the seat or the chair that I'm sitting on underneath my buttocks. This moment is perfect because I'm breathing. This moment is perfect because I'm talking to you. So, this is kind of a glimpse into the present moment meditation where I slowly and gently assess each of my senses with the lead in, preceded by the words, this moment is perfect because dot, dot, dot, because I see blank, because I hear blank, because I am blank, because I feel blank. And while you're eating dinner, you can say this, this moment is perfect because, and you can add taste and smell into that. And the point is you're conditioning yourself through this to really get into the present moment. And so, now, whatever I do…
There's another chapter I'm going to write on, which might be called Changing the Rules of Happiness, but in order to be happy, society's conditioned us to think we need a lot of different things, but what do you really need? Don't you just need this moment? You do if you decide that's what you need. And that was where actually, this meditation came from, is just realizing that– I think I was taking a shower, in the shower in the bath– I don't know where it was, but I just started going, this moment is perfect because I'm seeing the tile on the wall of my shower, and I really soaked in that visual experience. This moment is perfect because I'm hearing the water and feeling it drip off my body. And I just got really visceral and present to all of my senses with the cognitive acknowledgment, the intellectual acknowledgment that the moment was perfect simply because it was exactly as it was. Imagine that.
If you can change the rules of your game to find true joy in the perfection of every moment simply because the moment exists as it is, if you can find true joy in that, you win. You win, because then you don't need to watch the new Netflix show to be happy, you don't need somebody to acknowledge you to be happy, you don't need more money to be happy, you don't need anything to be different, to be happy. And let me be completely clear, this does not mean that you do not make changes, it means that you are completely happy while you do, that you are completely whole while you do. If you and your spouse are fighting, and he says something to you that upsets you or she says something that upsets you or regularly does something, you can let that bother you over and over and over and over and over every time he or she does that thing, or you can choose to be free from that and completely present to the perfection of every moment, because that moment is exactly as that moment is. And if that's the new criteria, the new rules that you create for your inner well-being, then you're in control. There's nothing anyone can do or say, there's nothing that can happen to you that causes you to be unhappy unless you allow it.
So, we're going to have a bunch of meditations in the book that we've never had before. I'm going to do a new chapter on transcending the ego. I'm going to do a chapter on the politics of humanity. And I already talked about that earlier. And by the way, these aren't necessarily in order. Again, this is all very rough, but here's something that's kind of fun. We're going to end, not with a 30-day challenge, I've ended every book I've ever written, except for my first book, Taking Life Head On!, but ever since the Miracle Morning, I've ended every book that I've written, 12 or 13 books with a 30-day challenge.
And I believe very much that, hey, if you just read a book and then you just put it on the shelf and read another book, you're going to forget most of what you read in the first book more likely than not, but if you have a 30-day challenge where you engage with the information in the book, you implement the information, you revisit it, you put it to practice, you put it into practice every day for 30 days and it becomes a habit and you condition it daily day after day after day after day for 30 days, the likelihood of that changing you in the way that you would want it to change you, or I should say, creating the changes for you or within you, giving you the benefits that you signed up for, that when you read the book that you were hoping for, they rarely come just from reading a book and then going on to another book. Repetition is the key to mastery. Repetition is the key to mastery, you have to repeat it over and over again. So, that's why I end every book in a 30-day challenge for you to engage with the information.
So, this book will be similar, but it's going to be slightly different. And I'm still working out exactly how I'm going to– how this will play out, but instead of a 30-day challenge, this book, The Miracle Life, is the working title, it could change. In fact, someone listening to this right now, if you send me a message at HalElrod.com/378, which is this episode, and you tell me why you don't like the title and you have another idea for a title, that might be the title, like I don't know. I don't know this one for whatever reason, I keep resisting it. So, that tells me either– I don't know what it makes me consider that maybe it's not the title, maybe there's something out there that's better, something different. And I've thought of titles like True Freedom, but it just feels too generic, you know, but I feel like that's what it is.
So, it's going to end in a 30-day sabbatical. So, instead of a 30-day challenge, it's a 30-day sabbatical. Now, what is a sabbatical? Like, the definition of a sabbatical is simply a break or a change from a normal routine, a more modern definition. Most people think of a sabbatical as like an extended period of leave from work, for rest or for travel or for whatever reason. It's usually a break from work, but going off of the definition, the fundamental definition, which is a break or change from a normal routine, that's what I'm after. And I love the word sabbatical because I'm about to go on my first sabbatical ever and I've been really learning about it and studying it. And that's what gave me this idea, of course, but I believe that everyone should take a break or change from a normal routine regularly, right?
So, we'll do a 30-day sabbatical for you to really take a break from your normal routine. It doesn't mean you're going to not work or not take care of your kids or whatever, but it's really going to be a break from– I think, it's a break more from our paradigms, from the way that we see and experience the world, taking a break from that. It's unplugging from The Matrix, so to speak, for 30 days to see what my life looked like if I lived a life of total freedom. What might life look like if nothing anyone did or said could negatively affect me? Nobody can mess with my vibe. What might life be like? What might life be like if instead of me judging people that were different from me? What might life be like if for 30 days I just loved everyone unconditionally? Instead of striving to prove them wrong, I strive to really understand where they're coming from, beginning at home with my family. What would life be like if I was impeccable with my health, if I didn't put anything in my body that was unhealthy?
Now, we might not go that far. Some of you were like, whoa, whoa, whoa, you had me until I had to eat healthy food for 30 days. All right, all right. Fair enough, fair enough. Just like the Miracle Morning, you customize this to fit your lifestyle and your needs. So, we may not go there, but what if what would life be like if you only put food in your mouth that made you feel energized and alive and it fed your cells with nutrition and you felt amazing? It doesn't sound like a bad thing, right? What my life would be like? What my life would be like if you had time in your schedule every day to just be, where you didn't have to solve any problems, you didn’t have to figure anything out, you didn't have to fix anything, you didn’t have to work, but you just got to be? That might be your meditation time. For me, I have multiple points throughout the day, I have multiple sabbaticals throughout the day. I have a sabbatical in the morning, it's called the Miracle Morning. And I realized that now, while that is not a break or change from a normal routine, because it is my normal routine, it is a sabbatical from the rest of the world, it's a sabbatical from worry, it's a sabbatical from stress, it's a sabbatical from anxiety.
And then I do it again in the afternoon. I sit in my backyard with my shirt off, often in my boxers, because I want to get as much sunshine as I can, but I sit in a chair or I lay on a towel, and I face the sun and I sometimes will bring my phone out there. Now, you might be going, whoa, whoa, whoa, why your phone? That doesn't sound like a sabbatical. No, to play some meditation music or some conscious music. Sometimes I'll even listen to an audio book, but usually there isn't because listening to an audio book, I got to think, I got to work, my brain has got to work, I got to think, ooh, that's a good point, ooh, I should teach that, ooh. So, it actually creates stress. I don't want that. So, I just go out there, and it's usually just music or it's usually silence. I should be clear, 90% of the time, it's silence. Occasionally, though, I bring my phone out there and listen to meditation music or whatever, but the point is usually, it's a 30-minute sabbatical where I'm getting sunshine. I’m bare feet so I'm grounding. You can Google why that's a good thing to put your feet on the bare earth every day. And I'm getting sunshine, I'm getting fresh air, and I'm getting a sabbatical from the matrix that is society. I'm just getting to relax and enjoy for 30 minutes.
So, anyway, this book is going to end with a 30-day sabbatical where I walk you through, and I'm still figuring out what this is going to look like, but I walk you through how to take a 30-day break or change from that normal routine where you do experience what would life be like if I consciously chose total freedom, beginning with inner freedom where nothing could negatively affect your inner well-being, where you got to choose how you felt, how you experienced every aspect of your life, including every person in your life, including yourself.
So, wow, this is a longer than normal episode, we’re at an hour and 20 something minutes right now. Hopefully, that was valuable for you. I know that I covered a lot of topics, a few of which were tangents and I intend on covering, but hopefully, you got a lot of value. I would imagine, if you did, if there were things that came up for you, you might want to go back and listen to this episode taking notes if you weren't taking notes. And I'm not trying to impose and tell you to do anything, but I'm just thinking that I know I covered a lot. And so, there may have been some things I shared or some one liners that might have stuck out for you that you might want to incorporate in your affirmations or something. Go back and listen again and you can take notes on this one, but I’ll probably start a series as the book gets a little further along.
I'll start a series where I go really deep into each of the topics in three chapters. I'll go really deep and then I'll get your feedback. So, that's a tentative plan. We'll see if that shakes out or when it shakes out. It might not be until the fall because of my sabbatical, which I've been trying to take for a couple of years now, and I failed last year and I've so far failed up until this point, but I think I finally figured out how to do it, at least for a few months. I’m going to do a whole year, but I don't feel like I'm ready for a year. So, for a few months, but it starts on May 24th. So, yeah, and I might still record podcast episodes because I like doing this. So, it's only stopping doing things that I don't want to do to spend time with my family, but I like recording podcasts. So, you'll probably still hear from me, or you will hear from me most likely once a week. Alright, I think that's it.
Well, goal achievers, members of the Miracle Morning, fellow human beings, members of the human family, yeah, love yourself, love your life, love other people. We only get one shot at this, we only get one time around, one time on this planet. And I think life's too short to allow yourself to experience anything other than what you want to experience. I think it's too short to create division between one human being and another, between ourselves and another. Remember, strip away everything and we're just the same. We're human beings doing this thing called life, and I'm grateful to be doing it with you. I love you so much. Thank you for listening, and I will talk to you next week. Take care.
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