“The purpose of life is to become the best version of yourself.”
Today’s podcast is the first in a 4-part series, each designed to set you up to do everything in your power to make 2022 your best year yet. We’re beginning the series with an encore presentation of one of the highest rated episodes that I recorded for you last year, which will give you an “Unconventional Approach to Make This Your Best Year Yet” and set the stage for the next three episodes.
As we leave this year behind, I’m inviting you to consider entering 2022 with an unconventional paradigm—that creating the best year of your life has less to do with what you accomplish (your results) or what happens to you (your circumstance), and everything to do with how you choose to show up and experience each day.
I’m also going to give you some strategies that you can immediately begin implementing to make 2022 your best year yet, no matter how you choose to measure success.
And one more thing, I have a free gift for you! I had one of my favorite people in the world on the show a couple of weeks ago, Brian Johnson. He is giving away his summaries of over 600+ personal development and business books. No strings attached, it’s free! Just go to Optimize.me/hal to get access to his amazing content.
- Why having a good year or a bad year has less to do with your results and more to do with how you show up every day.
- How a difficult year (see 2020/2021) can give you everything you need to become the person that you need to be to create everything else you want in life.
- How to get clarity and set goals in eight different areas.
- The value of unwavering faith and resilience.
- The power of support and accountability networks – and how to find (or create) one.
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Hal Elrod: Welcome to the Achieve Your Goals podcast. This is your host, Hal Elrod. And here’s what’s happening today and not just today, but over the next four episodes. So, I decided that rather than do one episode this month on how to have your best year ever in 2022, which I do every year. In fact, I ran a webinar in 2012 called Best Year Ever Blueprint, and then that led to running a live Best Year Ever Blueprint event for six consecutive years from 2014 to 2019. And then before that, I was always focused every year for the last probably 20 years on how do I make every year my best year ever, which is what led into this being a topic that I was really passionate about sharing with other people.
So, normally, every year, I do one episode of the podcast on how to go into the new year and make it your best year ever. This year, I decided I wanted to go much more in-depth and give you guys a month to really work on preparing to make 2022 your best year ever. So, that’s the four-part series that begins today. Now, here’s what happened that I wasn’t expecting. I went back and listened to the episode that I recorded last year, which was called An Unconventional Approach to Making 2021 Your Best Year Ever. And I went back and I listened to that episode so that I could be reminded of what I taught last year and then extract certain lessons that I might want to reteach this year, see how that applied to this four-part series.
And what I concluded is that you need to listen to this episode, meaning you need to listen to the episode that I recorded last year is just as applicable now as it was then, and just as universal and just as important going into 2022. And as I mentioned, the title of the episode, An Unconventional Approach to Make 2021 Your Best Year Ever, and now it’s going to be 2022, the episode from last year, as I listened to it, it was so important, there were so many things I said that I didn’t want to risk leaving those things out. I read the entire 28-page transcript, word for word from last year’s message. And again, I just want you to get all of it, I don’t want you to miss any of it. And then this will still be the first of a four-part series on how to make 2020 the best year of your life.
And today’s really the overview, this is the big picture, but there’s a lot of detail, there’s a lot of nuggets in here. In fact, this is not an episode that I would listen to while you’re driving or on a run or anywhere on the fly. I would sit down with a notepad and I would really plan a couple hours, take notes, paused it when you need to, rewind it, replay it. This is really like a training. This reminds me of I used to run a group coaching program, and every year, I would do these trainings with these handouts and every month. And this really is that level of podcast. It’s like a high-level deep dive training, kind of the best of both. So, this will kick off the four-part series. And again, even if you listen to this one last year, shoot, I recorded this for you last year, and as I was listening to it again and reading the transcript, I was like, I kept having these aha moments like, oh my gosh, this is so important. I can’t believe I forgot this, or I’m not living this myself. We all need to be reminded of this.
So, today’s episode, I really believe, is going to be very important for you to get ready to make 2022 the best year of your life. And then we’re going to follow it up with three more episodes to dive deeper. So, today, we’re going to talk about why having a good year or a bad year has less to do with your results or what happens to you, and more to do with how you choose to show up every single day. We’re going to talk about how a difficult year, see 2021, or in this case, it was 2020, but it can give you everything that you need to become the person that you need to be to go into the new year equipped to make it your best year ever. We’re going to talk today about how to get clarity and set goals in the eight key areas of your life. We’re going to talk about the value of unwavering faith and resilience. And we’re going to talk about the power of support and accountability networks and how to find or create one for yourself and a heck of a lot more. Again, pause this right now, grab a notepad or open up your computer to take notes. I believe it’ll be really, really valuable for you if you do.
With that said, before we jump into the episode, I want to take just a minute to do two things. Number one, I want to thank our sponsor and number two, I actually want to give you a free resource. One of my favorite resources going into 2022. So first, our sponsor, if you're listening to the show, you know, Organifi, they bring you the highest quality whole food organic supplements to boost your energy, make you healthier, lower your stress, help you sleep better, improve your cognitive ability, you name it. Anything related to your mental, physical and even emotional well-being, Organifi supplements can help you to improve and enhance how you show up every day, which is really the essence of today's episode. Head over to Organifi.com/hal, and then use the code hal at checkout and you'll get 20 percent off your entire order. That's for Achieve Your Goals podcast listeners. And again, I've been a customer of Organifi for half a decade. I highly recommend their products.
Last but not least, I'm excited to share with you a free resource. Totally free. No strings attached. And that is optimize. And you may remember a couple of weeks ago if you heard the episode I did with Brian Johnson, Brian Johnson is someone who I have been a student of for over a decade. I think it was back when I was like creating the Miracle Morning that I first discovered him and it was with his program, Philosopher's notes. Philosophers notes became optimize. It used to be $100 a year, which I paid for it for quite a few years. And now it is completely free for Achieve Your Goals. I think it's free for everybody, but for you as well. Head over to optimize.me/hal and you will get, for free, you'll get a premium optimized membership, which gives you... Immediately, you get 600 plus of the best personal development and business books available, all totally free. There's over a thousand one to three minute training videos summarizing the best big ideas from those books. And then there's 51 hour deep dive training videos that go deep into the books. Again, it used to be 100 bucks a month. Brian's new mission in the world, he's giving it away totally free. So again, head over to optimize.me/hal and take advantage of that. It's a great opportunity. And I'm excited, for me personally, I've got some goals around utilizing the book summaries where every week... I'm still tweaking how often, but I think it's going to be at least one book summary a week where I read it and then I re-read it and then I master it, implement it... I'll let you know, as I'm thinking through it over the next few weeks. In fact, I might be integrating it into one of these four part series. But as of now, I'm deciding how I'm going to get back to using those book summaries from Brian Johnson and optimize. So, without further ado, let's talk about an unconventional approach to make 2022 the best year of your life.
Hal Elrod: Hey goal achievers and members of the Miracle Morning community, friends, family. It is Hal Elrod. Welcome to today’s podcast. Today is kind of funny. I recorded this podcast yesterday, it was 48 minutes long. And when I went to save it, I accidentally deleted it. I’ve never done that before, that was the first, but after I get over a little bit of disappointment and frustration, I went, you know what? It is meant to be. I’m going to re-record this better than the first attempt. So, here we go.
This is December 30, 2020, if you’re listening to this live, then it happens to be my mom’s birthday, by the way. So, mom, happy birthday. If you’re listening to this, I love you more than life itself. Hope you have the best birthday ever. And if you’re not my mom, you are just a couple days away from the New Year 2021. And what a year 2020 has been for all of us, right? I’m sure you can share your own stories about what this year presented for you in the way of challenges and adversity and then, maybe opportunity as well.
I’ve talked to a lot of people that said 2020 was their worst year ever. And I’ve talked to a lot of people that said 2020 was their best year ever and a lot in between, but today, I want to share with you some strategies to help you make 2021 your best year ever. Now, am I qualified to do this? Or why am I qualified to do this? Personally, I focus on making every year the best year of my life and make a very conscious effort to do that.
Also, we’ve run a live event for six years in a row, we ran a live event from 2014 to 2019, I believe, called the Best Year Ever Blueprint. So, this is something I’ve really been focusing on for many, many years and a decade before that I was teaching Best Year Ever Blueprint to organizations. So, this is really an area that I’ve focused on and what’s interesting is, the strategies, the lessons that I’m going to share today are radically different than those that I’ve shared in the past because as I learn and grow and evolve, I think this is true for all of us, as we learn and grow and evolve, our strategies change, our mindset changes, everything that we do, everything that we know, as we improve and we elevate our way of thinking, hopefully, we’re getting better, we’re fine tuning what’s worked in the past and keeping what has worked and will continue to work, but replacing or updating that which could be better.
And so, of course, thank you for listening today. I want to make sure today is really a valuable use of your time and you walk away with insights that you can immediately begin implementing because again, the new year starts in a couple of days. Now, I do want to say this, the timeframe is arbitrary. We made up dates, like dates don’t exist independent in nature. There is no December 30th or January 1st in nature, we made it up, life’s just happening. Today is just another day of life.
So, I think that at the same time while there is value and there’s an energy with the new year, it’s like, wow, New Year, new beginning, I’m going to make this a great year. It’s all kind of arbitrary. It’s just every day, how do you make every day the best day of your life? And if you focus on showing up in a way where you make every day the best day of your life, literally, in terms of how you show up, how you perceive your day, then that’s how you create the best year of your life, year after year after year, it’s one day at a time.
And so, I want to ask you this to kind of get us into the mood, if you will, to dive into today’s content, have you ever ended a year and felt like it wasn’t a great year? In fact, maybe, it was your worst year, ever felt like that? In fact, maybe it’s today, maybe you’re looking back at 2020 and you’re like, yeah, that’s how I’m feeling, this was not a great year again, for a lot of us, maybe the majority this year. That might be the consensus, but here’s my question for you, the more important question, what makes a great year? How would you decide what made your year either great or not so great, the opposite? By what criteria would you determine whether a year is your best, your worst, anywhere in between? And is it your results?
I think for a lot of people, it’s like, well, I didn’t achieve my goals this year or I’m not quite where I wanted to be, so it wasn’t a great year. Okay, that’s a fair assessment, that is reasonable criteria to judge your year based on the results at the end. That’s one way that you could judge, interpret, determine, assess how good or bad your year was. Another way that you might assess your year, is it based on what happened to you during the year? I got cancer this year. So, it was a terrible year, I lost a spouse this year or sibling or a parent, it was a terrible year. I got COVID, it was a terrible year. I went bankrupt, it was a terrible year. So, is the judgment potentially based on what happened to you during your year?
And again, for a lot of people, I think that’s another way that people measure whether it was a good year or a bad year or anywhere in between. Here’s what I would encourage you, I’m going to give you a third option, so you can judge your best year ever or your worst year ever, how good your year was based on your results, you could judge it based on what happened to you that was out of your control or you could judge it based on how you decided to show up every day. So, that’s my third question for you.
How did you decide to show up this year, in the midst of COVID-19, in the midst of any challenges that you may have faced? Did you show up as a victim, feeling sorry for yourself, or just being angry that the things were happening that weren’t part of your plan this year? Did you show up in a fear state over things that were out of your control? Are you still showing up that way? Or even though all of these things happened collectively to our society and then the individual challenges that I don’t know what you went through this year, but whatever it was, my heart goes out to you, but may you have shown up or did you show up with grace and with courage and with confidence and with optimism and with discipline and with love? Because if that’s how you decided to show up, I would argue that that may have been your best year ever, even though all of those challenges, that adversity happened.
When I had cancer, I decided on day one, when I was diagnosed, I’m going to show up to this cancer the most positive, open minded, optimistic, energetic, disciplined, I’m going to show up from a place of service, I’m going to every day ask how can I get over my own issues and focus on how I can serve humanity and the greater good. And because of how I decided to show up, even though it was the most difficult year of my life by far, in fact, the last three years, I’d say were the three most difficult years of my life, last year was actually been harder than the first year I was going through chemo, but the point is, based on how I decided to show up, the words bad year never crossed my mind. In fact, I thought it was the best year I’ve ever had because of how I showed up and then, the growth that I got to experience as a result of that.
So, that’s what I really want you to consider. In fact, that we’re kind of beginning right now, where we’re going to end, meaning beginning with defining your best year ever, not based on your results alone, not based on things that happen to you that are out of your control because stuff’s going to happen, adversity is inevitable. You’re sure to face challenges and unexpected things and loss and sickness and all sorts of stuff, that’s just part of life, but if you determine whether or not you have a great year based on things that are out of your control, you give away your control, you give away your power, but if you say, you know what, my best year ever is not determined on anything outside of me that’s out of my control, it’s determined on how I show up every day.
I’m going to show up with love and with gratitude and with grace and with discipline and with courage and that will define me and that will define my year. It doesn’t matter whether or not I’m able to reach my goals. Not that it doesn’t matter, it’s not that it doesn’t matter at all, but it’s not what my year hinges on because sometimes you give everything you have toward a goal and it just wasn’t meant to be. The year that I wrote the Miracle Morning and I published it, my goal was to change 1 million lives one morning at a time, sell a million books, and I sold 13,000 books that year.
So, I was 987,000 copies short of my goal, but I didn’t get through that failure, I learned a lot. I showed up every day, I did 150 podcast interviews. And you’ve heard the story, probably, I did everything I possibly could, I traveled the country and I gave 36 speeches, I went on TV shows, like I did everything that I could to reach the goal of impacting a million lives, but I only reached 13,000 people, 13,000 lives. But because of how I showed up, I was able to look myself in the mirror at the end of the year and go, Hal, you gave it everything you had, this was your best year ever.
So, I’m going to break these criteria for your best year ever. I’m going to invite you to consider kind of a counterintuitive paradigm here. So, I would argue that what determines the quality of your year is really who you become. To me, everything hinges on that. That’s the ultimate purpose of life is to continue, in fact, becoming a better version of yourself. Matthew Kelly in his book, The Rhythm of Life, that I read probably over a decade ago before I wrote Miracle Morning, Matthew Kelly said, the purpose of life is to become the best version of yourself.
And you can back test every decision you make against that purpose, hmm, should I eat this food? And you ask yourself, well, will this bacon double cheeseburger help me become the best version of myself physically? You can answer that question. I want to answer it for you. Ooh, would this really healthy food that’s alive with rich nutrients, would that help me become the best version of myself? And again, you can answer that question, but for me, since I read that so many years ago, again, it was in Matthew Kelly’s book, The Rhythm of Life, that has been a huge kind of driving force for my decision making is which of these will help me become the best version of myself.
And another way that I phrased that sometimes is just which of these will add the most value to my life, which choice will add the most value to my life? Well, watching the news right now adds the most value or watching this conscious programming, this spiritual, intellectual-enhancing television program or show, like documentary, which adds more value for me, which helps me become the best version of myself? So, what I would invite you to consider is that who you become in any given year is more valuable, then what does or doesn’t happen to you and more valuable than the results that you generate, who you become, because you become determines what you’re capable of generating, creating, attaining, experiencing for the rest of your life year after year after year.
You can get lucky and hit a goal. I’ve gotten lucky before and hit a goal, where a company bought a thousand books, and I’m like, oh, wow, that was my goal, but I didn’t grow that much, it was part of the luck that is part of the process of success, but your growth doesn’t come just from those lucky moments. Those are usually the rewards for you doing the work to grow. So, your best year ever, I’m going to invite you to consider, it’s about who you become and that is based on two things. Number one, how you show up every single day. How do you show up in the face of your adversity? How do you show up every single day even when there is no adversity? Do you show up committed to following through with what you’ve committed to do in order to achieve the goals that you set? Because if you do that every day, if you show up and you follow through with the plan that we’re going to start to create today for your best year ever and every day you follow through, you give it your all, then it doesn’t matter what the outcome is at the end of the year, at least not that it doesn’t matter, but it doesn’t matter the most. If you give it everything you have, that’s all you can ask yourself because really your best year ever, it’s a daily pursuit, it is about the journey, that old adage that it’s the journey, not the destination that matters most. That really is it. How do you show up every day that is determining your best year ever?
So, number one, it’s based on how you show up. Number two, it’s how you perceive your year. So, this is really important. If you show up every day at your best, but you don’t see it that way, you go, man, I could have done more, I could have done better. You know what? Yeah, I did those nine things, but that one thing I didn’t do, I really let myself down, I let other people down. In order to have your best year ever, you have to perceive what you’re doing accurately. So, at the end of the year, for example, like right now, I would encourage you to consider that you could make 2020 your best year ever. Today is December 30th, if you’re listening to this live, I’m recording it a couple weeks ahead of time, but how you could literally look back at 2020 and go, this is the worst year of my life. Or you could look back at 2020 and you could find out, you could ask yourself, what did I do right? How did I show up for other people? How did I show up for myself in a way that was positive, that was proactive, that served me in the greater good? What were the experiences in my life that I have to be grateful for? What were the challenges in my life? And what did I learn from those? Or if I was in a victim mode and fear mode and I didn’t learn at the time, what could I learn from those now, that would enhance who I can become that I might not be conscious of, but it’s there, it’s available, those lessons are available if you are present to them?
So, you could by shifting your perspective on what 2020 was for you, instead of looking at all of the negative, all of the things that you feel bad about in 2020. If you could flip that to the other side of the coin and look at 2020 and go, Okay, what might have been my best year ever or what I viewed is a difficult year. how might I look at this in a way where I realized that this actually is my best year ever because it is enabling me to become the person that I need to be to create everything else I want for my life? Consider that paradigm, that 2020 may have given you everything that you needed, every experience, every lesson to become the person that you need to be to create everything else that you want for your life.
2020 may have been the best year of your life, not because everything went according to plan. In fact, I don’t think there’s a person on the planet that everything went according to plan. Well, there might be a few, but that’s another story. Anyway, how can you perceive 2020 as the best year of your life? Because it enabled you to become the person that you need to be to create everything else that you want because our greatest growth is usually a product of making it through our greatest adversity.
So, again, the premise for today’s episode, is that your best year ever is based on who you become. And who you become is based on two things, number one, how you show up every single day and number two, how you perceive your year whether or not you see it through the lens of terrible or through the lens of perfect, perfect for you to become the next version of you. All right, so we’re going to dive into two aspects of what it takes to make this your best year ever.
And again, this is one paradigm, I could probably create five different approaches to having your best year ever, I could create a very left brain one, which is like, set your goals and make your action plans and get an accountability partner to make sure you follow through. In fact, that’s actually one plan. In a lot of ways, that’s all you need. You could literally take that and the old me that would have been what I would have taught you today, I would have said set your goals. And we are going to talk about goals by the way, so we’re not going to dismiss this, but it would have been very simple.
Three steps. Set your goals, create your actions, your habits, your strategies. What are the actions you’re going to take to achieve those goals? And find someone to be your support partner, your accountability buddy to encourage you, to offer you guidance, and to hold you accountable to following through, that’s it. And if that’s all you need, by the way, you can hang up the podcast today and go do that because that can effectively help you create your best year ever in a very measurable way, most important goals, the actions that will make them happen, and a support system to ensure that you follow through with those actions and support you and give you guidance when you need a little outside perspective. So that in and of itself is enough.
Today, then we’re going to talk in two categories. Number one is mindset. What is the mindset that you need to have? What’s the internal work that you need to do in order to have your best year ever. And the second category are behaviors. What are the behaviors? What are the actions, the habits, the rituals, the routines that you need to put into place and maintain in order to make this your best year ever? So, those are the two categories that we’re going to talk about.
So, the first category, mindset. I’ll cover four different components of your mindset. If you have a pen, if you want to take notes, there’s going to be a lot of content here. And I think, I don’t know about you, but my memory is not that great. So, if I hear a podcast, I usually forget it once it’s done. So, taking notes is really important for me. And if you want to pause this, grab a notepad or grab your laptop, your computer, take some notes, this is where you’d want to start if you haven’t already started.
The mindset component. So, number one, we’re going to start with clarity. And clarity is really where all of our, how do I say this? Well, one is all of our results are born from clarity, that’s where it starts, you clear on, Okay, what do I want? Why do I want it? What do I need to do to create what I want or achieve what I want? And if you get that clarity, that’s the first step in having a vision and a path to a blueprint, if you will, to begin acting on. So, the behaviors are directed by your clarity.
I went to Tony Robbins in the fall of 2000. December of 2000 was my first ever Tony Robbins event UPW, Unleash the Power Within. I remember one of Tony’s quotes that he said, clarity is power, very simply. And I never got that, I didn’t really get it for a while. And then, at one point, I had a distinction that I thought was really helpful for me, which is if you look at the opposite of that, if you don’t have clarity, you don’t have any power, you don’t know what you need to do, you don’t know why you need to do it, you don’t know what you’re working towards.
So, to understand how clarity is power, it’s important to look at the opposite, that lack of clarity creates a lack of power for you, but when you have clarity, oh yeah, now I know exactly what I want, I know why I want it, and I know what I need to do. Now, you have power or at least potential power because of that clarity. So, this is where you want to start. What do you want to create in your life this year? You want to set some goals and then, I’m going to encourage you to establish your mission. And we’ll talk, I’ll give you a little refresher on how to establish your mission, why to establish your mission in a few minutes here, but I’m going to give you eight areas to set goals in. And these are eight areas that I choose each year. You can adjust these, you can add to these, you can replace these.
Again, I’m just giving you one approach to setting goals. And if you have another, if you have your own approach, take from this like a buffet. When you go to the buffet, you don’t eat everything at the buffet, you pick and choose those items on the buffet that appeal to you. So, the same thing goes with today’s podcast. So, eight areas, number one, health and fitness. I think it’s an important place to start it because if you don’t have your health, and for me, health and energy go hand in hand. I eat for energy first and taste second. That’s a little bonus tip for you. I eat for energy first, taste second. For me, I think human nature and maybe it’s just we’ve been conditioned is, Ooh, what looks good on the menu? Hmm, what sounds good? What tastes good? It’s a very emotional way to eat. Think about that.
Why do you get excited at your favorite food? Excitement is an emotional response. So, eating has become a very emotional experience for a lot of people. And for me, I love eating yummy tasting food, but the taste comes second after the consequence of what I’m putting in my mouth. The first thing I asked myself is, All right, what food would add the most value to my life right now? And for me, I typically want energy, at least during the day, so I always eat for energy. The smoothie I drink in the morning is for energy. The green tea I drink in the morning is for energy. The salad I eat at lunch is for energy. I want living foods that provide my body with energy, not dead foods that have been cooked or processed or canned.
Now, those are all indulgent dinners or on the weekend, but during the day, I am eating for energy. And thankfully, the same foods that provide my body with immediate energy provided my body with lasting vitality, so it’s kind of a win-win. So, setting goals and health and fitness, that’s your diet and your exercise. For me, my exercise has been lacking for the last, really, since I got cancer. I went through chemo, I lost a lot of weight, I lost all my endurance, and I haven’t really doubled down and really committed to major fitness goals in the last few years. I’ve worked out every day, but it’s for like, 10 to 30 minutes. I’m not really ever really challenged myself physically in a long time. So, that’s a big goal for me this year. My diet is already on point, but I really want to uplevel my fitness.
Second area, your finances, set some income goals. What’s your income goal? What’s your savings goal? So, I make sure I’d have both of those in the realm of finances. What’s your income goal this year? And what is your savings goal? And by the way, once you have the what, the how reveals itself, meaning, if you right now are unemployed and you’re like, what income goal? I’m not making any money, I’m just getting unemployment or whatever it is. Set the goal, and then figure out how. I’d encourage you to do that.
I was talking with my wife about this yesterday that I had set an income goal. Well, I’ve done this for years, every year, I set an income goal, but very often, I set an income goal and sometimes, I’ve set such big goals that I don’t know how I’m going to accomplish it and I don’t always get there the first year, but I eventually gotten to every income goal that I set. I set a goal to first, in 2005, to earn $100,000 in income, my first six-figure year, and I didn’t exactly know how I was going to do it because that was my best year ever, before that was $50,000, I’d only earned half of that. So, it was a huge goal, but one of my mentors taught me that once you commit to the what, the how reveals itself, not the Hal, the how, H-O-W, the how reveals itself. So, in terms of your finances, set an income goal and set a savings goal.
Number three, your career or business. So, if you have a career, it’d be in the realm of your career. If you have a business or you want to start a business, it would be in that realm. And while that’s related to finances, those can be kind of intertwined, it’s not one in the same because you might have a goal of starting a business, but your income goal is separate from the goal of the business. Or you might have a goal with your business to impact a million customers or a thousand customers or a hundred customers or whatever your business or your career goals, although they’re related to finances because you’re probably paid in your career, your business, they’re not one in the same. So, make those two different categories.
Number four, relationships. So, the fourth area to set goals in our relationships. And for me, I have a lot of subcategories there. I’ve got goals with my friends, goals with my family. I’ve got a marriage with my wife goals and then goals with my kids. And then, I have goals with colleagues like this year, I really want to implement a gifting program with my buddy, John Ruhlin, one of my closest friends, and John’s the author of Giftology. And that’s his expertise is appreciating people through really thoughtful gifts. And I’ve done one-off gifts here and there, but I am not consistent with it. And I don’t appreciate people, like I appreciate people in my mind and in my emotions, but I haven’t really appreciated them, I haven’t reached out the way that I should. And so, that’s one of my goals is to uplevel that and automate it and systematize it, so that everyone in my life hears from me in a really meaningful way and feels appreciated.
Number five, contribution or you might call that giving, whatever word resonates more with you. Contribution and/or giving. That’s donating time and/or money to help other people. When I wrote the Miracle Morning, I wrote in the book, so I would have accountability that I’m committed to donating a minimum of 10% from every copy sold of the Miracle Morning. And I’ve continued that for eight years and it’s been well, I mean, not well over but I’d say, it’s been closer to 15% of my income. And it’s from not just the original Miracle Morning book, but I put that in every all 13 books in the Miracle Morning series, have that same header or that same page at the front that says, “Thank you for buying. We’re donating a portion of this to other people.” So, that’s one way that I’m able to make sure that I am giving to causes that I really believe in,
Number six, personal growth and/or development. Again, use the words that resonate with you. For me, I like personal development, logical like personal growth, whatever resonates with you, but that would be goals around your Miracle Morning, for example, like I’m committed to do the Miracle Morning six days a week for an hour or whatever that could be one of your personal development or personal Growth goals. You might have goals specifically around books. I’m committed to read these books this year, maybe events that you’re going to attend virtual or in person, there aren’t any in-person events this year, knock on wood. So, yeah, set some goals around your personal growth. Again, if you think about it or if you consider if you’re on board with the ultimate purpose of the measure of your best year ever, so who you become, then your personal growth or development goals might be your most important.
Number seven, fun and relaxation. This should be an area you set goals and then, I think this is when people, a lot of people forget to even think about it, but life is meant to be enjoyed, at least that’s my opinion. Life is meant to be enjoyed. And so, and when I say set goals for your fun and your relaxation, I’m not just talking about scheduling vacations, that’s great. Schedule your vacations, awesome, but I’d more encourage you to focus on your daily fun and your daily relaxation, make sure you have time in your schedule every day that nourishes your soul, that enhances your mental health. My morning bike ride every morning, which I’m not doing lately, because it’s like 30 degrees outside and I’m missing it, I’m really missing it, I got to find a replacement for it, but that 9 or 10 months out of the year, I go for a bike ride every morning in my neighborhood and that is like one of my happy places, it’s one of my happy places. Silence, my meditation now, we talked about this on a recent Facebook Live I did in the Miracle Morning group, but every morning, I do this emotional optimization meditation and every day, I put myself in a peak emotional state, usually it’s some form of joy or happiness or gratitude and I just sit there in that state for 10 minutes. And it’s so good that I don’t want to end the meditation. And on the weekends, I’ll do it for an hour, sometimes, I do it longer, but it’s so good. So, you don’t have to go anywhere, you literally can just meditate at home or in your office or on your bed and just feel happy. That’s one of my daily techniques for relaxation.
Another one is basketball and I haven’t done this in a bit, but yesterday, my neighbor Mike McCarthy and I committed that we’re going to start playing basketball at least five days a week. Well, actually, we said three to five, we haven’t decided which, but we love basketball. And our other neighbor has a half court in his backyard, Tim. And so, we’re going to use Tim’s court. And every day on our lunch break, the first 30 minutes of my lunch break, we’ll be playing basketball with Mike. And that is my happy place. I love playing basketball.
So, my point is when you set goals for fun and relaxation, make sure they’re not just like quarterly or vacations, make sure it’s your daily life that you’re doing things every day, ideally multiple times a day that bring you joy, that enhance your relaxation, that are fun, whether it’s playing with your kids or going for a run or doing the emotional optimization meditation or playing basketball with your neighbor or playing a board game or watching TV. That’s another thing. I don’t watch a lot of TV, but I do every day at lunch. When I eat food, I have this weird thing, I mean, it’s not weird, but I love to watch television while I eat my lunch. And I think it’s because it’s a complete escape. I think that’s probably why some people watch too much TV because they’re trying to escape life, but for me, it’s like all the things on my mind, I get to shut them off, I get to eat an amazing, nutritious, delicious lunch while I watch, whatever I decide to watch, a fun show and just relax.
So, again, I’m going a little deeper here than I intend to do, but just make sure that fun and relaxation is actually on your goals. And then, you’re committed every day to do things that enhance your spirit, make you feel good and happy and joyful because that’s what life’s for. Life’s not meant to suffer and struggle and stress and too many of us are spending too much of our time, too much of our lives, struggling and stressed. Like, I always say, you can be stressed out or you can be blissed out, B-L-I-S-S-E-D, blissed-out life is happening either way, it’s more about perception than anything else.
And then, number eight, spirituality and/or religion, so whatever term or word resonates with you. So, have goals around your spiritual self. And for me, the easiest thing for me to do is to read books on spirituality. So, books like Conversations with God or The Untethered Soul or if you want to go really deep, the work of Ken Wilber or Andrew Cohan. I think actually, I don’t know if Andrew, I don’t even know if his books are in print anymore, but anyway, reading books or books on the subject of spirituality or enlightenment, those types of books kind of keep me present to the essence of life. And for me, life is not about our life situation, life is about who we are, at our core, our spirit, our consciousness. And I won’t get too woowoo and go down that path today, but anyway, set some goals in that area. And then, once you’ve set your goals in those eight areas, I highly recommend that you clarify your mission. What is the single most important goal that you’re going to prioritize above all the rest? And here’s an important, I’m going to give you the question to identify your mission.
The question is, which of my goals will most effectively enable me to become the person that I need to be to achieve all of my other goals? And when I say become the person, I’m talking about, which of your goals will enable you to develop the qualities that you need, the mindset, the behaviors, which of your goals, and it’s usually the one that’s the most challenging, the one that you’re the most concerned, afraid of because it’s a big one or it’s out of your comfort zone, something you’ve never done before. That is usually the goal that will require you to develop the clarity and the confidence and the discipline and the follow-through that will then enable you to become the person that you need to be, to create everything else that you want for your life, achieve every other goal that you set.
And you may remember, there’s a story I’ve told before, in 2005, that was my first year where I had a breakthrough year and I achieved every goal I set in every area, including my mission. And these were all goals that were way out of my comfort zone. So, my goals for that year, my mission was to double my best year ever in sales. I had been with Cutco for five years and I was one of their top sales reps, so it’s not like I was slacking off, I was achieving, usually in their top 10 every year out of 30,000 to 50,000 sales reps. However, I knew that I could do more, I knew that I had never really given it my all, I had just kind of done enough to place in the top 10 but never really given it my all.
And so, I decided it was my last year with the company. And then, I wanted to really follow my dreams of being an author and a speaker and helping people outside of just my career that I had been in for five years. And so, I thought, you know what? I want to challenge myself, I’m going to try to double my best year ever, I’m going to increase my results, my sales by 100%, that’s the goal. And that scared the hell out of me, like that was so out of my comfort zone, increasing by 10% or 20% or 30%, that’s even challenging because it’s you’re bettering your best, but to double, it was like, for me, just a huge undertaking and I decided that was my number one goal.
And not because it was the most important goal, depending on how you deem important, like, if you have a family, for example, I wouldn’t say that doubling your best year ever is more important than being a great parent or a great spouse or taking care of your health, but in the context of what we’re talking about, I decided that would be the goal that was the most challenging, the most out of my comfort zone that would require me to develop the qualities and the characteristics that I needed to achieve every other goal that I set that year and every goal I’d set forever. And what’s interesting is doing that proved to be effective. So, that one goal when I decided it was my mission and this is I’m telling you, this for you to do this.
So, once you have all your goals set and then by the way, let me interject my other goals. My goal in my relationships was to find the woman of my dreams. I set that intention to find my future wife. I had been dating for long, I was 25 and I was just ready, I’m like, Oh, I’m ready to settle down, I’m ready to find that person to spend the rest of my life with. So, that was my goal was to find that person, I didn’t know where I’d find them, I didn’t know how I found them. Remember what I said earlier, when you commit to the what, as in the goal, the how tends to reveal itself. You figure out the how once you’re committed to what you’re committed to. And then, you got to figure out how to do it.
So, my other goal was to get in the best shape of my life, I forgot the exact measurement, it was like I wanted to put on 15 pounds of muscle and I wanted to improve my cardio, I had all these measurable outcomes in the realm of fitness. I also wanted to write my first book that, again, in and of itself was a huge undertaking for me. I also wanted to launch my speaking career and give my first ever paid speech, that was the goal. I also wanted to rock climb three days a week, that was my fun and recreation goal because I loved indoor rock climbing. And so, I committed to it Monday, Wednesday, and Friday on my lunch hour.
And then, I had a few other goals, I committed to lead a team of other people to have their best year ever and do some other things. And when you have your mission, here’s what I want you to understand is when you clarify, okay, I have all of these goals, which one will help me become the person, as in develop the qualities and characteristics that you need to achieve every other goal that you set? Once you’re clear on what that is, which goal is the one that is going to cause you to step up, maybe like you’ve never stepped up before, to challenge yourself, then when you wake up every day, your priorities are clear. For me, it was I’m not allowed to work on my other goals until I’ve followed through with the predetermined process that will keep me on track for my mission.
My mission-driven actions, those took priority. And once I did those, for me, it was making phone calls to referrals, people that I had seen, that I had referred, friends and colleagues that would potentially be good prospects, I would call those folks and say, “Hey, I visited with your friend, Mary, and she thought you’d help me.” Making those daily phone calls, I had to make those calls before I worked on my book, before I went to the gym, before I went rock climbing, before I prospected for a speech, before I did anything else, I had to work on my mission.
So, it helps you clarify your actions once you’ve clarified your mission and then, here’s what happened, because I was focused on my mission, it prevented what causes a lot of us from failing. And what causes a lot of us to fail, is that we’re not clear on our priority of actions and we just wake up and do whatever is easiest, we just check email, we do whatever has the lesser consequence. So, it holds less weight. And so, we tend to gravitate toward the path of least resistance, but once you’re clear on, I’m committed to my mission and I’ve got to do those things first, what that does is you immediately feel productive, you are becoming a more focused, prioritized productive individual and then, that spills over into every other goal that you set.
You start the day at your best and then, it’s easier, much easier. After you’ve been productive on your mission, the most important goal that you have this year, it’s easy to take that productive version of you, that disciplined version of you, that focused version of you, and move on to goal number two and goal number three and goal number four. So, having your mission clear will help you to achieve every other goal that you set.
So, number one, in terms of your mindset is you’ve got to start with clarity and you’ve got to maintain that clarity by reviewing your goals every single day, reviewing your mission, keeping them top of mind. I interviewed Geoff Woods for the second or third time a few months ago. Geoff Woods is the Vice President of The ONE Thing company based on the book, The ONE Thing, one of my favorite books by Gary Keller and Jay papasan. And Geoff teaches, and I think it’s from the book or notes from the book, but he says that the key to achieving your goals is you have to develop a relationship with your goals. The analogy that he gave was, if you meet the person of your dreams, you don’t go on one date and then never talk to them again, but a lot of people approach their goals that way, where they sit down at the beginning of the year, they set their goals for the year, and then they close the computer file or they put the paper in their journal and they never look at it again. They set it and they forget it.
And that’s a recipe for kind of like a relationship with another person. If you never talk to him again, it’s not going to go anywhere. And a lot of people don’t look at their goals until the end of the year when they go to set their next year’s goal and they go, “Oh, I forgot to look at these.” You have to have a relationship with your goals. You have to date your goals. You have to see them every day. You have to talk to them. You have to get to know them and get to know yourself in relation to them. How are you showing up toward your goals? Do they need to be adjusted or tweaked along the way? And often, they do.
So, it starts with clarity, setting your goals, and then you’ve got to, I gave you the eight areas, get clear on your mission and then you’ve got to revisit them every single day or more often than not. The second component of mindset, I would encourage you to spend some time on and journal on, is what I would call your purpose. Get clear on why, your purpose is your why. Why did you set these goals? Why are you working towards these? Why are these important to you? Why are they crucial? What’s in it for you? What are the benefits in you achieving these goals?
Remember that the fundamental purpose of a goal, as in the greatest benefit available to you isn’t reaching the goal, it’s who you become as a result of giving it everything that you have. So, whether or not you reach the goal, only the growth lasts forever. So, get clear on your why. For me, that is the most fundamental why. When I set my goal to double my best year ever, in 2005, my goal, the purpose of it was to become the person that I needed to be, to achieve every other goal that I set, but then I had bullet points under that, there were more whys.
I was going to earn my first ever six-figure income, that was exciting. That was exciting. It wasn’t the driving force and by the way, here’s why it wasn’t, here’s the problem when money becomes the driving force, becomes your purpose. Usually, not for everybody, if money is really important to someone, then that can be enough, but for me, personally, and you may relate to this, I found that if I have this big goal to earn more money than I need to earn, like I didn’t need six figures to pay my bills, I needed less than half of that. And that’s why in the past, I had earned about half of that.
So, the problem is when you don’t feel motivated, when you don’t feel energized during your year, if money is the only carrot that you’re chasing, it’s like, I don’t really need to earn that amount of money, I’ll just settle for a little less, but when your purpose is to become the best version of yourself by how you show up every day, to become the person that you need to be to create everything else you want for your life by how you show up every day, then there is no option to not show up fully, to settle for less than your best. It doesn’t matter how much money you’re making, that’s not it. It’s who you’re becoming and when that’s your driving force, when that’s your ultimate purpose, I find that when I’m in my head and I go, I don’t really feel like it. That mantra that I live by, that I often share, do what’s right, Hal, not what’s easy. Do what’s right, not what’s easy gets me to get out of bed and do the things that I committed to doing, so I can become the person that I committed to becoming so that I can create the life I committed to creating.
So, define your purpose in writing. And your purpose, I would encourage you to consider the ultimate purpose as I suggest it to become the person that you need to be to create what you want for your life or to become the best version of yourself. I encourage you to consider that as the fundamental purpose, but then I encourage you to add more whys, give yourself a few bullet points, what’s in it? What are the fun benefits? What are you going to get out of achieving those goals? Are you going to be in better shape, have the six-pack that you always wanted? Are you going to earn more money to support your family or to buy your dream home or to secure your children’s education, whatever it is for you, like get clear on your purpose? And it’s not singular, you can have more than one reason why those goals and that mission is important to you.
The third aspect of mindset is unwavering faith. And this is a component, as you may know of The Miracle Equation, unwavering faith. Unwavering faith in you, you’ve got to maintain unwavering faith in your ability to overcome any obstacle, to keep pushing forward in the midst of challenges and your unwavering faith in yourself that you can make it to the finish line, metaphorically speaking, in terms of your best year ever. And for me, I do that through writing, I do that through affirmations. My affirmation around unwavering faith is 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. I’m committed to achieving this thing, to becoming the best version of myself by reaching this goal, achieving my mission.
The blank is whatever for you is the most important or the outcome for each of your goals, but maintain an unwavering faith that you can take action, even if you don’t feel like it. Maintain unwavering faith that you can push through till the end, even though it’s not going to be easy. Maintain unwavering faith in your abilities. And that, to me, has been crucial and again, I do it in writing because faith is the opposite of fear. Whenever you find yourself in a fear state, I’m afraid I might not be able to blank, I’m afraid because right now I don’t feel like doing blank. Immediately pull up that affirmation that says, No, I don’t care how I feel at this moment, I’m committed to doing blank no matter what, there’s no other option, I will do it. And follow through with your commitments.
And by the way, next week, I’m going to do a deep dive into The Miracle Equation, it’s kind of like The Miracle Equation Revisited and we’re going to continue this conversation because it’s going to be how do you apply The Miracle Equation to making this your best year ever. So, today’s going to lay the foundation. Next week, we’ll go a little bit deeper. And by the way, just as a side note, the paperback edition of The Miracle Equation is coming out next week, which is why my publisher asked me if I would do a podcast episode, I said, “Perfect, it’s perfect timing, it’s the beginning of the year, this is a great time to do a revisiting of The Miracle Equation.” So, yeah.
And then, the fourth component of your mindset is what I would call resilience. And resilience is crucial because as I said earlier, adversity is inevitable, it’s almost guaranteed you’re going to face challenges. And a lot of us, we set goals, but then when we encounter adversity, when we meet circumstances that we didn’t expect, then we very often throw in the towel and go, Oh, I didn’t know it was going to go like this. Never mind, I’ll just do something else, I’ll just throw the goal away, I’ll throw the towel in on that one.
So, it’s really important that you have resilience, which is I would define that as your ability to respond proactively to adversity. And again, it begins with understanding that adversity is almost inevitable. And it goes back to what I talked about at the beginning, which is, who you become is dependent, first and foremost, on how you show up. How will you show up in the face of adversity? Will you show up with resiliency and brush it off and keep moving forward when you face obstacles? Or will you let the obstacles discourage you and defeat you and stop you? So, resiliency is a crucial component of the mindset that you maintain throughout this entire year.
So, just to recap, the mindset that I’m inviting you to dive into and journal about and focus on this year. Number one is clarity, clarity on what you want to create in your life this year, get your goal set, clarify your mission. Number two is your purpose, the why, the meaning behind the purpose and benefits behind the goals that you’re committed to. Number three is maintaining unwavering faith. In the midst of fear, replace fear with faith, so that you can keep moving forward. And number four, is resilience, your ability to respond proactively to adversity. Resilience is something you choose, it’s not something that you’re born with or not born with, it’s not something you look at, oh, wow, I wish I had their resiliency. No, you choose to be resilient or you choose otherwise, that’s our choice. So, that’s the mindset that I’m inviting you into for your best year ever, inviting you to take that mindset on and consider it and develop it.
In terms of your behaviors, this is the other side of the coin when it comes to creating, just having a great life, having a great year, having your best year, having a great life, you’ve got the mindset that’s required and then, you’ve got the behaviors. If all you have is the mindset, but you don’t do anything, if you’ve got clarity on your fitness goals, but you don’t actually exercise, if the behaviors aren’t there to support the mindset, then that’s only half the equation. You don’t actually get to see the fruit, you don’t actually get to see the outcomes and the results that you have clarified in your mind.
So, when it comes to behaviors, I’m going to start, I’m biased with the morning routine, but I’m going to start with your morning routine, your morning ritual. So, that’s number one is to start every day with a morning ritual in order to optimize your mental, emotional, physical, and spiritual well-being. It’s in order to become the person that you need to be at the start of your day, to get yourself into an optimal state, physically, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually, so that you can take the best version of you into your day and it affects every goal that you’re working towards. Showing up every day begins with how you start your day. So, number one in terms of behaviors is make sure your morning ritual is dialed in.
And by the way, if you haven’t seen The Miracle Morning movie or you’re brand new to the podcast and you haven’t read The Miracle Morning book and you’re looking for a morning ritual, I would encourage you to either check out the movie which is on Amazon Prime Video right now, it’s also on Vimeo. So, there’s the two places you can find it, Amazon Prime Video and Vimeo. And of course, the book is on Amazon, the audiobook is on Amazon, but if you don’t know The Miracle Morning, there you go.
If you are a Miracle Morning practitioner, but you’d fallen off, I’d encourage you to do a 30-day Miracle Morning challenge in January. Start your year off by recommitting to start your day right. And if you want support on that, you can go to my miraclemorning.com just for the movie. We set up a brand new and improved Miracle Morning 30-Day Challenge and if you go to my miraclemorning.com, you can download the 30-Day Challenge Fast Start kit, which is like a 19-page document or 27 pages, it’s a lot of pages, but that will help you get clear on all the important areas of your life and design your Miracle Morning and design your savers and track your progress every day for 30 days. And all of that is over at my miraclemorning.com.
So, number one in terms of behaviors, I double down on my morning ritual. How I start my day, I find, sets the tone and the context and the direction for the rest of my day. The second component in terms of your behaviors, is what I would call your predetermined process. Your predetermined process, consider that every result that you want for your life, every call it a result, call it a goal, call it an outcome, every result, goal, or outcome that you want for your life is predetermined by a process that produces that result.
For example, if you want to lose weight, that’s predetermined by a process or processes, but let’s say, in simple terms, a process of exercising for 20 minutes a day, that would be a process that would predetermine the outcome of losing 10 pounds. I’ve predetermined I’ve got clarity on the goal, what’s the process that will make achieving that goal possible or probable or inevitable? Hopefully, all three, but predetermine your process and so, when I say your process, if you were to break that down, it’s deciding on the daily habits, the actions, the rituals that will ensure that you move toward your goals.
When you hit your goals, maybe, next week, we’re going to talk about how to move your goal achievement from possible to probable to inevitable, that’s what The Miracle Equation is all about, but again, the point is not whether or not you hit your goals, the point is, how are you showing up every day? Are you doing the things that you have predetermined will keep you on track for your goals, keep you moving forward. For example, if you want to write a book, your process, maybe writing for an hour a day or more specifically writing a thousand words a day or 500 words a day, that would be the process. And the beauty of defining a process and then living by it is you’re setting yourself up for success.
One of the most valuable lessons that I learned back when I was in sales and trying to achieve goals was, it was actually a late-night self-taught lesson, I was falling asleep one night and I realized, I’m so focused on my goals, my outcomes. And at that time, I did not have the paradigm around the purpose of a goal is not to hit the goal, the ultimate purpose is to become the person that you need to be who is capable of achieving the goals. Back then, I was black and white, I thought it was to hit the goal and you win, you succeed. If you don’t hit the goal, then you fail. And so, for me, I realized that and one night, I was falling asleep and I went, Wait a minute. I’m so focused on the outcome, but I’m not in control of the outcomes. I influence them, but think about it, like I’m not in control of, at that time, if a customer buys from me, I’m not in control of. If I see 20 customers this week, if I schedule 20 appointments, I’m not in control of how many of them are there when I show up. We used to have no shows all the time, people would forget you were coming and they would leave the grocery store and you’d get to their house and knock on the door and they weren’t there. I wasn’t in control of that. And I realized, the only thing I’m in control of is the process.
And for me, at that time, it was making 20 calls a day, five days a week, that was my process. I thought I’m going to switch my emotion, the game I’m playing. Instead of having my emotions attached to the outcomes, I’m going to attach my emotion to the process because I’m in control of that, I’m in control of how many times I pick up the phone and call someone. You’re in control of how many minutes you run on the treadmill. You’re in control of what you put in your mouth. You’re in control of which books you read and how many books you read. And you’re in control of your Miracle Morning, you’re in control of what you say to your spouse, you’re in control of whether or not you schedule date nights with your kids or your spouse, you follow it like that’s the process. So, be process oriented.
So, the lesson for me was to commit to the process without being emotionally attached to the results, commit to the process without being emotionally attached to my results. And when I did that, my life changed because I started to learn how to let go of stress. I’m not going to stress about the outcomes, I’m just committed to the process. And so, for me, if I followed through with my process every day, if I made my 20 calls, if I ran on the treadmill for 20 minutes, whatever my process was, I got to pat myself on the back and smile and feel accomplished, hey, I did it. And I knew that what’s called the law of averages, which is if you engage in your process day in and day out consistently, the averages work themselves out.
You’ll have good days and bad days and average days and the whole gamut, but at the end, over an extended period of time, it works itself out and you average out to achieve your goals. You might be a little bit short, you might pass it up a little bit, rarely do you land right on the dot, but when you commit to the process without being emotionally attached to your results, you free yourself emotionally to engage in your process and show up with joy and actually enjoy every moment. And to me, that’s the best year ever.
The best year ever is how many moments of joy you have. Did you enjoy the process of working towards your goals? Like I said, not to be cliche, but it is a journey, not the destination that determines your best year ever. If you hit your goal, but you hated every minute and you were in stress and physically, your body was breaking down because you were experiencing so much stress, I don’t know if I call that my best year ever. Well, no, no, but I hit my income goal, I hated it, I was stressed, I had no fun, I gained 20 pounds that I didn’t want to gain, but I hit the goal. I’d say the journey is way more important. Both are important, but if you have a great journey and you fall a little short of the goal versus exceeding the goal and having a miserable year, I take the former.
Of course, both are ideal. Both are ideal and that’s what this call is about, is get clear on your outcomes, but decide that you’re going to show up every day in a way that you love. You love your life. You love your life and that’s more about how you look at things than it is about the things that you’re doing. Now, if there’s things you’re doing that you’re not in alignment with, you don’t love them, you know deep down, you should be doing something else. Absolutely start making changes. But if you’re doing them anyway, you might as well enjoy it. You might as well enjoy it and that’s up to you. You can enjoy anything, you can enjoy anything. I enjoyed when I was getting chemotherapy, I enjoyed that.
And I remember I told a story a few weeks ago about, I was at a college party and I was throwing up, I drank too much. This was back in college, of course. And I was sitting out on the bench and I think I was reading Eckhart Tolle, The Power of Now, at that time. I think that’s what sparked this, but I go, “You know what?” Instead of, I mean, I don’t know about you, I hate throwing up, I don’t enjoy throwing up, but I’m doing it anyway. I’m sick anyway. Why don’t I smile and enjoy every moment? And I did. And I literally was smiling and I had some friends come out and check in, “Are you okay?” I’m like, “I’m great. This is the best time I’ve ever had throwing up.” Sorry, I don’t mean to gross you out, but like I think it’s a good example of like you literally can enjoy anything, you can enjoy anything, consider that. You can be the happiest and the most grateful you’ve ever been, even in the midst of the most challenging time in your life or at least be neutral, at least be at peace. You can be at peace with the things that you can’t change.
So, predetermine your process and one of my favorite ways to do that, by the way, is I create what I call a foundational schedule. I always have a foundational schedule. I used to do it in a paper planner, which is a pain in the ass because you have to rewrite it every week. There’s some value in that, you’re staying present to it, but now, I use a digital calendar, I use a calendar, an app called Fantastical. Actually, it’s Fantastical 2, the number 2, but it’s an app on my computer and it connects with my phone and all my devices, but that way, I have recurring appointments.
So, I have a foundational schedule, where every day, every Monday, it’s the same for me. I wake up at the same time, I help the kids get ready for school after Miracle Morning, then I exercise and then I dive into work and have a lunch break and I then put on basketball. My foundational schedule is set up so that I’m excited to live it, I’m excited. And it’s very specific on what I’m going to do every hour of every day. And there’s flexibility, it’s okay if occasionally, I adjust, in fact, I adjust it a lot, but I always have this foundation to go back to and it’s a schedule that I love.
Think about this, if you want to change your life, change your schedule because your schedule determines your life, it’s what you do every day. That’s where your behaviors are cemented in that foundational schedule. So, that’s one of my favorite strategies for, not only predetermining all of my processes, but just creating a life that I love. It’s creating a schedule, that I love, a schedule that I am excited to live. All right, so the third behavior, so number one is get your morning ritual established. Number two is predetermine the processes for each of your goals. So, in the mindset component, we talked about clarity, getting clear on your goals and clear on your mission. Well, once you’re clear, okay, now you’ve got to predetermine the processes, what are the actions, the habits, the behaviors, and the routines that will ensure you are every day moving closer toward your goals?
And then, the third aspect of your behaviors is to initiate a support system. This is important, very important. Now, a support system, it could be the Miracle Morning community. If you don’t have anybody in your life, for some reason, hopefully, that’s not the case, but if it is, you can go online and you can find a support group that way. The Miracle Morning community is a great place you can check in every day and you can get some support accountability. And you could also get a group of people where you start your own group, Facebook group, and have your own little accountability mastermind support group, if you will.
So, it could be online, but ideally, it would be with a living person that you could actually engage with over having weekly phone calls, text messages, that sort of thing. So, I’m talking about a friend, it could be a family member, but that would be your accountability partner or your support, buddy, call them whatever you want. I used to work out, what gym did I work out at? It was a Goal Fitness. Anyway, they call it your goal mate, G-O-A-L. They said find your goal mate, which was like a soulmate, but your goal mate was your accountability partner to hold you accountable and support you to achieve your goals.
And so, the reason that it’s so crucial and it’s so valuable to have a support system, by the way, I almost forgot, another option is lead an accountability group or a mastermind group. This was my favorite ever support system, instead of just a one on one, and I’ve had it for many years with different friends, I have one-on-one support, where we talk every week for 30 minutes or we meet at a coffee shop and we just go over, Hey, what are you committed to do this week? Great. And then, in the next week, we go, how did you follow through with your commitments? And if we did it, then we’ll get some feedback from the other person, they’ll ask us some questions, Hey, how come? What got in the way? What can you do differently this week? And then, we’ll make our new commitments. It’s just real simple, real quick, but it’s to ensure that we’re really clear on what we’re committed to doing this week to stay on track for our goals and we have someone to hold us accountable.
And so, for me, the most valuable form was I once reached out to 20 of my colleagues and I asked if they wanted to form a weekly mastermind, no charge. And the mastermind was every week, one person would teach on something for like 20 minutes and then, we’d spend the last 10 minutes doing what I just described earlier which is holding each other accountable, just getting clear on, Okay, I’d go down, Hey, Jeremy, you said last week that you were going to make 20 calls a day, five days a week and that you were going to go to the gym, Monday, Wednesday, Friday, did you follow through with your phone calls? Yes, I did or no, I didn’t. And then, Okay, what got in the way? And what will you do differently this week to ensure that you follow through with your new commitment? And then, did you go to the gym three days a week, Monday, Wednesday, Friday? Yes, I did. Great. No, I didn’t. Okay, what got in the way? And what will you do differently this week to ensure that you follow through?
And by the way, you can also ask yourself those questions. Every week, you can evaluate your progress and go, did I follow through with my processes this week for each of my goals one at a time? If you did, great, pat on the back. If you didn’t, what got in your way? And what can you do differently this week to ensure it? Don’t let one bad day turn into two, don’t let one bad week turn into two. And so, whether you’re holding yourself accountable which is totally doable, it’s just that for the majority of us, myself included, we’re more likely to follow through if we have someone that we’ve given our word to, that we’re leveraging our integrity with.
And I will say that, after doing that, for years, I have become quite self-accountable for many years, but for a lot of time, I had coaches, I had accountability partners that were holding me accountable and they were helping me to train myself to hold myself accountable and to follow through. So, the reasons for this, just some simple reasons, I mean, some of these are obvious, number one, though, is encouragement. I think we all benefit from having people encourage us, I don’t care who you are. When I have someone tell me something encouraging, I feel encouraged because when we doubt ourselves, and we all doubt ourselves at some points, sometimes believing in the belief that someone else has in us, is what enables us to not give up.
You’re discouraged, things aren’t going well, you’re not following through, you’re hard on yourself, having someone just tell you, “Hey, look, it’s not about perfection, it’s about progress. You can do this, I believe in you.” You can’t change the past, you can change everything else. What are you going to do this week to make this week great, even though last week and the week before weren’t? That encouragement goes a long way and it can be a game changer, it can be the difference maker.
The second is accountability. Having someone else hold us accountable, it can be the difference between year after year of letting ourselves off the hook and we’re leveraging our integrity and following through. And then, the third is perspective. Having someone else to provide you with guidance and advice. When you’re in the middle of your stuff, your challenges, it can be really challenging to see yourself from an outside perspective because you are you and you’re emotionally in it. You’re feeling overwhelmed or you’re feeling discouraged or whatever and when you’re feeling those emotions, it’s hard to think clearly. So, having someone to give you support, to give you feedback and guidance and perspective, again, can be absolutely invaluable. So, have your support system.
So, I’m going to run through and review those real quick. Two categories to focus on right now, number one is mindset, number two is behaviors. In terms of mindset, it’s clarity, getting clear on your goals and your mission. It’s your purpose, getting clear on why those things are so important to you and why you’re willing to do whatever it takes to make those a reality. Number three, maintaining unwavering faith, along the way when you’re faced with fear, replace that fear with faith. And number four, resilience, deciding now that you will respond proactively to any adversity you face. That’s the mindset component.
In terms of your behaviors, number one, have that morning ritual in place so that you start every day in a peak state. Number two, predetermine your processes for each of your goals. So, you know which actions, habits, routines that you need to commit to and follow through with in order to reach your goals. And then, that little bonus tip I gave you is to be committed to the process without being emotionally attached to the results. And number four, initiate a support system, have an accountability partner, dive into the Miracle Morning group, start your own mastermind group on Facebook for free or WhatsApp or whatever and lead other people. Being a leader to others is one of the best ways to bring the best out of yourself and hold yourself accountable and get encouragement, accountability, and perspective that you need.
That is what I have for you today, ladies and gentlemen. And I hope that helps you, not everything there is revolutionary, but I hope you got some nuanced distinctions and some strategies and some specific exercises or actions that you will incorporate to help you to make this your best year ever. And I want to say this, your past doesn’t equal the future. Your future is not determined by your past. It doesn’t matter what’s happened. Not that it doesn’t matter, but it’s not consequential, what has happened in your life up until this point because right now, this moment, you get to choose how you’re going to show up today and tomorrow and the next day and every day for the rest of this year and for the rest of your life.
And remember that the ultimate purpose of every year is to continue learning and continue growing and continue being better than you’ve ever been before. As Matthew Kelly said, the purpose of life is to become the best version of yourself. So, set goals that will force you out of your comfort zone, that will enable you to learn new things and to grow and develop new abilities that you need to achieve these goals. And remember, you can’t fail because whether or not you reach the goal, only the growth lasts forever, that is the most important component. Your success isn’t dependent on the outcomes, it doesn’t hinge on whether or not you reach your outcomes, your goals this year, it’s who you become.
And so, from that vantage point, again, it really is about the journey and not the destination. And so, from that perspective, you can enjoy every moment. You don’t need to feel unnecessary, unhealthy pressure and stress. You only get one life and you choose whether or not you enjoy every moment or you stress in more moments than you need to. And so, focus on that place inside you right now and this year, that is just grateful to be alive. Focus on that feeling. In fact, right now, take a deep breath and breathe into that feeling, just being grateful that you’re alive. This is it. This is life. Life isn’t in the future. Life isn’t in your goals. Life isn’t at the end of 2021 based on how things go. This is your life. It’s always happening for you. It’s available to you to tap into that place inside of you that realizes that you already have everything that you need for your whole.
So, your best year ever isn’t about how 2021 ends, it’s about how it begins. It’s about how you decide to show up today, how you show up on January 1st and 2nd and 3rd. It’s not about what happens to you along the way, it’s how you respond to what happens and how you continue to show up. Your best year is lived every single day and that starts today, right now.
So, goal achievers and members of the Miracle Morning community, I love you so much. I hope this was helpful today. I hope I was encouraging and inspiring, but more importantly, I hope you’re going to take action and you’re going to actually do the exercises around the mindset and around the behaviors that you need to develop and maintain this year to make it the greatest year, the year that you deserve. All right, love y’all. I will talk to you next week.