Who’s the most successful person you know? Success can mean many things. You might be thinking about the person with the most lavish lifestyle, the biggest house, or the nicest car.
When I think of successful people, I think of someone who can say, “I cherished every single moment of my existence.” And in today’s episode, I’m thrilled to share the roadmap for evolving into someone who can make such a claim, regardless of what life throws at you.
I’ll also share my strategy for achieving success in any area: deepening the bond with your loved ones, building wealth, or elevating your health and fitness. By embracing this strategy, you can look back on your life not with regret but with deep satisfaction for the reality you’ve created and experienced each day.
- Ego is the enemy of success and fulfillment.
- How to select your emotional state at any given moment.
- How to dismantle and reshape the harmful stories we tell ourselves.
- To build your dream future, release the shackles of your past.
- Find what sets your soul on fire, then immerse yourself in it.
- Experiencing the power of an absolute commitment to conquering your goals.
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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 20% off of your entire order. I hope you find something there that you love! :^)
Rise by CURED Nutrition is a natural supplement made from CBD, Lions Mane and Ginseng (among others) that helps boost energy, performance and cognitive function. There’s no caffeine, no jitters and most importantly, no crash. Visit CuredNutrition.com/Hal and receive 20% off of your entire order. They have tons of other products as well, hopefully you’ll find something that works for you. :^)
- Susie Moore
- Let It Be Easy: Simple Ways to Stop Stressing & Start Living by Susie Moore
- Family Brand
- Christopher Carter Smith
- Melissa Smith
- The Magic of Thinking Big by David J. Schwartz
- Untangled: Guiding Teenage Girls Through the Seven Transitions into Adulthood by Lisa Damour, Ph.D.
- Strong Fathers, Strong Daughters: The 30-Day Challenge by Meg Meeker
- The Non-Runner’s Marathon Trainer by David Whitsett
- The Making of a Bestseller: Success Stories from Authors and the Editors, Agents, and Booksellers Behind Them
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Copyright © 2023 Miracle Morning, LP and International Literary Properties LLC
Hal Elrod: Hello, and welcome to the Achieve Your Goals podcast. This is your host, Hal Elrod, and I appreciate you being here today. We are going to talk about how to be the most successful person that you know. What does that mean, the most successful person that you know?
Well, the first question to ask is who is the most successful person that you know? Stop and think about that for a second. Who comes to mind in your life, in your world when you were to think, well, the most successful person I know is blank? Who is that person? And my next question for you is why? What about them? Or what criteria are you using to assess whether or not they are the most successful person that you know?
Today, we’re going to talk about approaching success both from the inside and the outside, meaning inner success, which is how you feel about your life, and outer success, which are the actual circumstances that you have created for your life. How do you optimize both of those? Because one without the other, life can be a struggle. So, that’s what we’re going to talk about today.
Before we dive in, I want to take just a couple of minutes to thank, actually, one sponsor. And then I want to share something with you about the Miracle Morning app in case you’re not aware. So, first and foremost, our sponsor, Organifi, you hear about them every week because they’ve been our long-time sponsor. And if you haven’t tried Organifi yet and you’re wondering, why, Hal, why every week Organifi, Organifi this, Organifi that? So, I’m a huge fan of the products. I’d used them long before they were a sponsor, which is why I asked if they would sponsor the podcast because I was already talking about their products.
And they make the organic whole food supplements in powder form to help you with things like weight loss management, mental clarity and cognitive ability, sleep, recovery, you name it. If you want to improve your health in a fast, efficient way, Organifi’s got powders that you dump into your smoothie, pour into your smoothie, a glass of water, juice, almond milk, whatever floats your boat for an instant boost of health, energy, vitality, etc. To see all the products that Organifi has to offer and why I’m so excited about them all time, head over to Organifi.com/Hal, that is O-R-G-A-N-I-F-I, Organifi.com/Hal, and then use the discount code HAL, H-A-L, my name, for a 20% off your entire order which is for all listeners of this podcast.
And then, last but not least, I want to take just less than a minute to invite you to either download the free Miracle Morning app, or if you already have the free app, but you have not yet tried the premium subscription, I want to read you three quick testimonials about the premium subscription. First is from Emily. She says, “The guided morning routines have been a game changer. I feel like I have a personal coach leading me to greatness every day.”
Second testimonial is from Michael. These are all from the App Store, by the way. Michael says, “As a busy professional, I needed a quick, yet effective boost to kickstart my day. The 10-minute tracks have revolutionized my morning, making me more motivated and productive.” And last but not least, is from Sarah. Sarah says, “With the Fast Start course, which is in the app, I’ve gained practical wisdom to optimize my routine and seize control of my life. The premium version has been a true blessing.”
So, again, if you don’t have the app at all, you can download the free version. And if you would like to try the premium subscription, you can get a seven-day free trial inside of the app and then you can choose to continue after monthly or with an annual subscription either way. Head over to MiracleMorningApp.com or just open the app on your phone and you can find the free version in the App Store or the premium version if you already own the app.
All right, goal achievers, without further ado, let’s talk about how to become the most successful person you know, not from an ego place, but from a place of true fulfillment so that you can be a blessing to the people that you love and that you lead. Here we go.
Hal Elrod: Hey, goal achievers and members of the Miracle Morning Community, friends and family, it is good to be with you today. And today, we’re going to talk about how to be the most successful person you know. That might sound a little odd. Some of you might say, I don’t need to be the most successful person that I know, although I would imagine, I think it’s pretty normal for humans to compare ourselves with other people. Don’t we do that?
And I think there’s a healthy way to do that, and there’s an unhealthy way to do that. The healthy way to do that is to say, “Wow. These other people, maybe my friends or people I look up to or somebody I see on TV that I admire the work that they do and how they live their life and how they carry themselves, I’m going to compare myself to them and consider that they’re an example of what’s possible for me.” That’s a healthy way to compare yourself to somebody else is to view every human being and what they’ve accomplished as evidence of what’s possible for you. So, that’s a healthy way.
The unhealthy way is jealousy and envy and feeling unworthy and incapable when you compare yourself to other people. And to be honest and fair, I’ve dealt with both of those types of comparison. I’ve compared myself in a healthy way to people, which I try to do more often than not. But I’ve also found myself comparing myself to others. That’s not healthy. People that are my colleagues or my peers and I go, “Man, they’re so much better than me, smarter than me.” Maybe even been getting victim mentality, like, “Oh, if I didn’t have cancer and have the chemo brain, I’d be better and I’d be like them. And they didn’t have to go through what I went through.” That’s pretty normal for all of us, right? They didn’t have to go through what I went through. So, if you’ve been through difficult times in your life, which most of us have, that’s normal to think.
But here’s what I’m talking about today. It’s a slightly different spin on where you think I might be going with this, and we’re actually going to end up where you do think I might be going with this. Let me explain. So, I was interviewing Susie Moore last week on the podcast and she said something that was a paradigm shift for me. It was really just subtle but profound, which led to me recording today’s podcast. Susie said, I’ll paraphrase what she said off my best recollection. She said, “If you get to the end of your life and look back, who was really the most successful person? Was it the one with the biggest house, the nicest car, the most money, the measures of success that our society and many of us subscribed to,” she said, “or was it the person who enjoyed their life the most?”
Because if we had the biggest house and the nicest car and the most money, but you were stressed out and miserable all the time, maybe partly because you were comparing yourself to the person with more money and a faster car and nicer house, so on and so forth. Was the person that had the measurable, tangible goods and assets that most view with envy, were they really the most successful if they weren’t enjoying that one life they were blessed to live? Or was it the person that got to the end and looked back and went, wow, yeah, I genuinely enjoyed just about every moment or more moments than I didn’t and they lived a fulfilled life? They might not have had the biggest house, the biggest car, the most money, or any of that, but they enjoyed their life the most. So, that was a really profound shift.
And we’re going to go further than that because it’s hard to enjoy life when you have poor health. It is hard to enjoy life when you have stressful relationships. It is hard to enjoy life when you are struggling financially. So, while the Buddhist approach, which we often kind of talk about this inner freedom, while that is, I believe, the highest aspiration to be able to be completely at peace with what you cannot change and focus on all your energy, on changing what you can and enjoying every moment being free from emotional pain and inner turmoil, to me, that’s the ultimate objective.
But it’s not the whole story, it’s not the whole equation. Because like I said, if you’re like, “Man, I’ve mastered my mental and emotional well-being, but I haven’t mastered the discipline required to eat healthy and exercise, so I lack energy and I’m sick a lot and I’m afraid I might get cancer because I don’t eat well. I’m afraid that I might have heart disease, like maybe my grandfather or my father did because I’m repeating some of those negative patterns. So, just because you have mastered your mental and emotional well-being, you got to master what it takes to be physically healthy.
Let’s say you master your mental and emotional well-being, but you’re in a really difficult marriage. You’re fighting all the time with your spouse. There’s no harmony. Maybe you’ve lost some of that love. Maybe you’re just roommates, you’ve lost the romance, so on and so forth. It’s challenging to be really happy when your most important relationships, and that could be with your spouse, with your kids, could be with anybody, could be with your best friend, your neighbors, whatever. But if you have turmoil in the relationship, that’s going to create inner turmoil for you and it’s going to be, again, you can master the mental and emotional well-being, but why swim upstream? Meaning if you can get your health in order and your relationships in order and your finances in order, and you can feel mentally and emotionally great about, not just because you have the superpower, but because you actually have created a life that you feel really good about, then that to me is the ultimate success. That’s the ultimate freedom is its inner freedom and outer freedom.
Inner freedom is the freedom to choose how you feel in any given moment. We’ve talked a lot about that over the last, I don’t know, year or so, but outer freedom is the freedom to– it’s where you’ve got your physical, mental, emotional, financial, like, you’ve got your relational, all the pieces of your life, you’ve worked hard to create wins in the areas of your life that matter the most.
And I have a screensaver on my phone right now. I just remembered this as I was talking to you right now, and the screensaver when you turn my phone on, it says, “My goal is to wake up every morning feeling overwhelmingly thankful about the kind of life I have created for myself.” So, see, that’s a blend of inner freedom and outer freedom. Inner freedom is that I’m waking up in the morning feeling overwhelmingly thankful. That’s inner freedom. The freedom to choose how you feel, choose how you experience your life.
But the last part of the sentence is you’re feeling overwhelmingly thankful about the kind of life I have created for myself. So, that’s not just the I’ve mastered my mental and emotional well-being so I’m good at dealing with difficult circumstances. Yeah, I think that’s arguably the most important thing you can do. But it’s I’ve actually created the circumstances that I feel good about. And sometimes, I forget the latter. And I probably have done that more often than I should have over the last year or so with the podcast because I work really hard to optimize my health and I read books on marriage and I implement them regularly. I read books on parenting and I implement them regularly. I have affirmations to be the best husband that I can possibly be for my wife, Ursula, and to be the best dad I can be for my son and my daughter. I read books and have affirmations on growing my business and all the different things that I work on.
Certainly, the point of me saying all that is I think sometimes I might forget how hard I had to work to get to this point. And so, today, I want to not just talk about– in fact, we’re going to talk much less about what we’ve touched on already, which is that inner freedom peace. And I want to say what Susie Moore said on last week’s podcast, and again, I’m paraphrasing, it was toward the end of the podcast. If you haven’t listened to that, I highly encourage you to go, listen. That is episode, give me one second, and I will tell you what episode that is. I think it was 492 or 493. Let me see. It was 492.
So, 492 was the discussion with Susie Moore, who’s the author of Let It Be Easy. And that’s kind of what her MO is, her mission objective is to let it be easy. It’s like life is hard enough. There are challenges no matter what. But how do you shift your mindset so that you don’t feel like everything in life is hard? Marriage is hard and work is hard. And relationships are hard and finances are hard. If that’s the story that you tell yourself, you’re going to probably be miserable, right?
In fact, this is actually really, ooh, ooh, ooh, I’m so glad I remember this. All right, tune in, everybody. Here you go. I realized that the story that I was telling myself about fatherhood was actually detrimental to my mental and emotional well-being. This was literally something I realized a few days ago. And the story that I tell myself and I tell other people too, we often do that, the narrative that we create in our own head, the voice in our head usually comes out of our mouth at various times.
And so, for me, I had the story that, first of all, I feel like I’m never as good of a dad as I want to be, as I strive to be because I’m a perfectionist. Maybe you can relate. I’m not endorsing perfectionism. I don’t think it’s ideal. I think it creates a lot of anxiety and feeling of lack and you’re not good enough and all of that because perfection doesn’t exist, right? Other than the idea, the perspective that everything is perfect, every challenge is perfect, like I do subscribe to that, where I do view that every moment of life is perfect because it serves whatever purpose I choose to whatever meaning I choose to give it.
So, if you’re facing difficult circumstances and you go, “Wow, this is perfect in terms of my evolution. This challenge that I’m going through right now, this pain that I’m enduring, it’s really painful, it’s really difficult. But I choose to believe, I choose to see that there is value in every experience if I learn from it, if I choose to learn from it. And so, in that, it’s perfect. It’s perfect as part of my evolution.”
So, looking back at your life, could you see the challenges in your life that you faced losing a loved one? For me, it was the car accident, the cancer, the financial collapse of 2008. All of those experiences, while they weren’t easy, I mean, some of them were downright unbearable, but they all served a purpose. They served my evolution becoming the best version of myself. And you have to go through difficult times for that to happen.
So, anyway, back to the story about this narrative that I realized that I was telling myself about being a dad. The specific part is I say there were three years of my life, of my kids’ life. My daughter Sophia was seven when I was diagnosed with cancer. My son Halsten was four. And I was living away from them for the majority of that first year getting chemotherapy in Houston, Texas while they lived here just outside of Austin, three hours away. And so, I only got to see them a couple of times a month because I was in the hospital and then sick with chemo, on chemo for weeks at a time. And they’d visit me if they could, but they’d always have to wait a few weeks to visit because I was bedridden for a few weeks and sick. So, it was like them coming was– I didn’t like them seeing me like that too often and then because I couldn’t engage with them. So, it’s like Dad’s sick in the room. That didn’t do much good, so I’d have to wait for those small windows when I was well for like a week before I’d start chemo again.
So, the story that I created for myself is not only that year, but the two years following, I was still on chemo and I was sick quite a bit. I was on a lot less chemo, but I was on chemo nonetheless and I was sick and I was missing everything or missing most things. My wife would take the kids out on activities and I’d be home in bed sick. And I was always exhausted and I was tired.
And so, I told myself this story for the last five years, six years that for those three years, I was not very present in my kids’ life. And it makes me sad. And I spend every day trying to make up for lost time. And it’s a lot harder because from the age of 7 to 10, your kids want to spend every possible moment with you for the most part, at least mine did. But now, my daughter’s 13, going on 14, it’s like hanging out with dad, she doesn’t want me to read her stories every night and she doesn’t want me to snuggle with her the same. It’s different. She’s a teenager. My son is 10, so he’s still my little buddy and we still cuddle and hang out and play together. But with my daughter, it’s a lot more challenging as she gets older. And so, here’s the point is I realized the other day that the story I tell myself and that I have for years is that I was sick for three years and not able to be there for my kids like I wanted to and that I’ll never get that time back. It’s this really depressing story that I tell myself.
And the other day, I was looking through pictures. Some just memories popped up in my phone and it was me during that time where I didn’t have any hair, but I was reading the kids stories and I was doing puppet shows for them in the morning. And I just started to go back through pictures from those three years and I was reminded that, yes, I woke them up every morning with a puppet show, like I did these funny voices with these puppets, this unicorn, and this droopy guy. Anyway, I did this funny voice every morning. I put them to bed every night. I read them stories and put them to bed every night. We had Nerf gun wars around the house all the time. We played ping pong almost every single day. I rode bikes around the neighborhood with both of my kids. I took my daughter to see Queen in concert for her 10th birthday, on and on and on and on and on.
And I realized the story I’ve been telling myself, is it accurate? And it makes me feel terrible about the most important thing to me in my life, which is my kids. I’d argue that’s one of, if not the most important aspects of my life. The most important role of my life is dad. It’s right up there with husband. They’re tied, right? But I realized that the story I was telling myself was detrimental and it wasn’t true.
And so, I pulled out my affirmations and I created a new affirmation that reminded myself, this was literally a few days ago, that Hal, actually, I talk to myself in the third person when I have these realizations. I’m not sure why, but that’s how I write to myself. It lands differently. Affirmations are usually taught, I am blank, I am committed to blank, I am capable of blank, I am worthy of blank, usually, these “I am” statements. But whenever I have a profound realization, and profound for me is just like this is important. This will shift the way I experience life or the way I show up or what I believe I’m capable of. These are pretty profound breakthroughs.
And when I write those down, I write them in the third person. I’m sure there may be some science to this. If there is, I haven’t looked it up in long enough to remember it. But the point is, I write things down like this. I say, “Hal, you have to remember you are a phenomenal father. You care as much about your kids and being a great dad as any other dad on the planet, and you work so hard to do everything in your power to be the best that you can. And it’s time to redo your narrative, to rewrite your narrative around the dad that you’ve been up until this point, specifically when you were sick with cancer. You did everything you could during that time. You put the kids to bed, you woke them up, you read them stories, you did puppet shows, you put on plays for them. You played ping pong.”
All right. So, again, I’m just telling you and I’m going off the top of my head, I’m not reading this, but that’s generally what I wrote to myself. And I’m sharing this with you because I’m inviting you to examine the narratives that you tell yourself, the stories you tell yourself, the ones that you create your experience of reality from. Think about that. If you focus like, here’s the simple way to look at it, right? It’s the two pages analogy. In life, in every aspect of life, we have two pages that we can focus on at any given time, either page. One page lists all the positive, one page lists all the negative. You can view your past through either page, all the positive or all the negative. Both are true, both are realistic, but which one you choose to focus on at any given time determines your quality of life, how you experience whatever page you’re looking at related to whatever part of your life.
So, this is also true for your current circumstances. One page lists everything you have to feel bad about. One page lists everything you have to feel good about. Which page you focus on determines how you feel about your life. Also, when you look inward at yourself, one page lists all of your faults and mistakes. One page lists all of your qualities, your strengths, and the good decisions that you’ve made. Both are equally realistic. Which one you focus on determines how you feel about yourself at any given time.
Now, project that outward. Every person in your life, every relationship you have, especially those closest to you, there’s both pages to focus on. So, if you’re married, look at your spouse or just look at any person in your life, your mom and dad, anybody in your life, you can look, and there’s two pages to focus on. One lists all the positive. One lists all the negative. Now, to be clear, there is reality as well. For example, if you had someone in your life that is really mean and abusive to you, it’s not that you ignore the negative and you go, “No, no, I’m just going to focus on the positive,” not at all. It’s evaluating both and looking at which page best serves you at any given moment.
And so, essentially, these metaphorical pages are the narratives that you tell yourself, that you buy into, that you maybe repeat to other people. And so, I brought this up with my kids, and I told my daughter Sophie, and then I talked to the whole family last night at dinner. We talked about our family’s narrative and the idea that do we focus enough on the positive stories as a family because if we focus on nothing, we don’t intentionally focus on anything and just let whatever memories might come up, come up. We are not being intentional about how we feel about our family.
And so, it started a few days ago when I went to my daughter and I said, “Hey, Sophia, I’ve been telling myself that when I was sick, I wasn’t able to be there for you guys a lot because I was in bed a lot.” And I said, “I just want to talk to you and see how you feel about this.” I said, “I felt like, man, when I was sick for a few years, I couldn’t go out with you guys on activities and Mom had to take you out a lot.” And I said, “But I really thought back and I realized, I actually was pretty engaged with you, even though I was sick. I woke up every morning with the puppet shows and I read you stories.” And she started smiling and going, “Yeah, I remember that.” And she goes, “And you did this and we did this together.” And she started naming all these different habits and rituals and routines and activities. She goes, “Remember, we used to always set the tent up in the living room and camp in the living room.” And she’s like, “That was when you were sick with chemo. And remember, we did this. We built that for–” she reminded me, “Remember, we spent weeks building that fort on the back part of our property.” It was behind our backyard and the unfinished woods that we lived behind there by.
Anyway, so interestingly enough, her narrative was more positive than mine was about how I was as a dad. And so, I’m inviting you to consider the narratives that you tell yourself, the stories you tell yourself, which page are you focusing on more often than not? And is it possible that parts of your life where you’ve deemed yourself a failure or you have shame or guilt around parts, and that’s normal for I think most parents, right? They call it mom guilt and dad guilt, always feeling like you could have done more. You should have done more. You should have known better. Most parents suffer from some level of that and ask yourself, does it serve you?
And it might, meaning if you feel guilty over something you’ve done in the past or not done, it does serve you to acknowledge that, oh, that emotion of guilt is a reminder that I should never do that again. But beating yourself up for eternity, like living your life, beating yourself up for the mistakes that you’ve made, feeling unworthy because of maybe failures in the past or undeserving or uncapable because of failures in the past, does that serve you to this day? And typically, it never served us to dwell on that negative page, to live there, to continue and perpetually tell a narrative of that.
And I’ll give you another example. Last night, we were going through these questions. My family and I are doing this program called Family Brand with Chris and Melissa Smith. We’re on our third week, I believe, and I highly recommend it. It’s really great. There was a list of questions to ask your family. And one of the questions was about, it was basically rating yourself on a scale of 1 to 10, how seen and heard and loved do you feel? How do you feel like we do as a family with traditions? And we all rated ourselves kind of low and it was traditions, like, I don’t know. On a scale of 1 to 10, my son was a 6.5, my daughter was a 5.5. I was a 6. And then my wife was a 7.
But Ursula started talking. And we started talking through all the traditions we have as a family. First of all, Ursula goes over and above for every holiday. She decorates, she makes it special, and she has, ever since the kids were little. And so, we were reminded of that. And we’re like, “Yeah.” Mom goes over and above her holidays. And then Ursula started just pointing out like, we do this. And for your first day of school every year, we print signs off and we take pictures and trying what the other traditions were. We’ve done family dinners together for many years, but on and on and on.
She’s sharing the different traditions, and all of us changed our scores dramatically from 5 and 6 to 8s and 9s. And think about that for a second, if your narrative around any aspect of your life, if it’s negative, you feel negative, but does it warrant reexamining? Does it weren’t reexamining? Because I’ve had this narrative that I wasn’t able to be there for my kids for three years. That’s not true. I was there for them almost every single day. And by simply changing the narrative, it changed how I experienced myself as a father and my relationship with my kids. And it changes my kids’ experience by me talking to them about it and reminding them of all the amazing times we had together.
And for my daughter’s birthday coming up, I know she can hear me out my office, but basically, in general, I’m going to start printing. So, I’m going to go through and print more collages of our family to remind us of all the amazing times we’ve had together and to change, to upgrade, to improve the narrative around what it means to be an Elrod and what kind of life we’ve had as a family and how many amazing experiences that we’ve shared together.
And so, going back to what Susie Moore said last week, if you get into the end your life and you look back, who was the most successful, the one with the biggest house, the one with the nicest car or the most money, or was it the person who enjoyed their life the most, and realized that the narratives you believe and you tell yourself and you tell other people largely determine how you view your life and yourself. And when you change the narrative, you can change how you feel and how you experience every aspect of your life.
Now, I want to shift gears and I want to talk about how to create external, measurable success because again, yes, inner freedom is the unwavering ability to enjoy every moment of your life, to be at peace, to choose your inner experience, your emotional well-being, regardless of your circumstances. That’s the topic of one of the bonus chapters in the new Miracle Morning updated an expanded edition that will come out later this year. Preorder starts September 12th. The official book is out December 12th. Just mark your calendars, or trust me, I’ll let you know as we get closer.
But that’s the topic of the miracle life. It’s your path to inner freedom. However, think about this, I would rather have the ability to experience inner freedom and have great relationships, optimal health, and financial security than to be able to utilize my superpower that is inner freedom and struggle in each of those areas of my life, right? I don’t want poor health, poor relationships, to be financially poor and have to work really hard to leverage my inner freedom superpower. I want a great life, great circumstances.
So, I’m going to give you three steps. And nothing is rocket science here, but these are important. And sometimes, we did a series, it was only like a three-podcast series, Getting Back to the Basics, a few weeks ago. But this morning I was listening to an audiobook summary of a book that I probably read 15 years ago, maybe longer, called The Magic of Thinking Big. You may have heard of that book. It is a classic. I think it was written, I don’t even know, 50 years ago, a long time ago. I could definitely be off by a decade, but roughly, it was a long time ago. Magic of Thinking Big. I’ve read it, but I was like, “Oh, I’m going to relisten to the summary.” And it was amazing how just some simple fundamentals that I’ve potentially got away from were such valuable reminders.
And so, step one that I want to share with you, these are steps to create external, measurable success. So, even though the paradigm around being the most successful person you know was about getting into the end of your life and being the one that enjoyed your life the most, like that’s the measure of success, I mean, however you measure it. But these are three steps to create external, measurable success. Number one, consider inspiring possibilities for your life or for yourself, I should say. In fact, I’m going to write that down, for yourself.
Consider inspiring possibilities for yourself. And this is inspired by The Magic of Thinking Big. It’s simply the idea that we put limitations on ourselves based on our past. I’ve never done that before. I don’t know anyone that’s done that before. I’ve tried and I’ve failed. We put limitations on what’s possible for us based on the limitations that we’ve had in the past or the results that we’ve created in the past, and we have trouble seeing anything beyond that.
So, in order for you to create external, measurable success, in order for you to improve your life, you have to first be able to consider possibilities beyond what you’ve achieved or experienced or accomplished up until this point. And again, I know that’s not rocket science, but how often are you doing that? How often are you dreaming of what’s possible for you? How often are you sitting down, whether it’s during your miracle morning, during your meditation, or during your journaling, or when you’re reading books by people that have accomplished great things? How often are you really considering inspiring possibilities for yourself and for your life? Or are you reading or seeing someone else, then you go, “Oh man, I wish, I wish I could do that. I’ve never accomplished that before. I don’t know how to do that. I’m not capable of that. I don’t think that’s in the cards for me.” Is your thinking possibility thinking or is it negative thinking? Are they possibility-inspiring beliefs or are they limitation-inducing beliefs?
So, number one, consider inspiring possibilities for yourself. And this has to be done with intention. It has to be done more than once, right? Well, technically, you could do it once, and then as long as you write it down and you revisit it every time you do it, you’re reconsidering those inspiring possibilities. But that is step one. And again, if you haven’t read the book, The Magic of Thinking Big, I encourage you to read it. It’s somewhat elementary self-help. But, gosh, I’ve been reading self-help and doing personal development for 24 years. And so often, we get away from the basics. It’s very normal to get away from the basics. That’s why I did that series a few weeks ago, called Back to the Basics.
So, The Magic of Thinking Big is a great reminder. It’s a great book. And if you want to do the book summary, there’s a lot of book summary apps. The one I was using this morning is Headway. So, Headway is, I don’t know if I must pay for a membership because I was able to access all the books. So, for like $9.99 a month or something, I don’t know. They’re not a sponsor or anything. But there’s also a great app called Blinkist.
And the cool thing about these apps is they have audio as well. So, you can either read the book summary, or this morning, I was driving to the doctor and I was listening to the book summary for The Magic of Thinking Big. Step two. So, step one, consider inspiring possibilities for yourself. Step two, transform your possibilities into probabilities. Transform your possibilities into probabilities. And again, this isn’t rocket science, but it works. It’s what’s needed. And how do you do that? And it’s simply a matter of scheduling time to work towards your possibilities.
So, the way to transform your possibilities into probabilities, it’s simple. Schedule time to work on whatever you have decided or imagined or considered to be a possibility for you, for your life, for your future. Schedule time. And I’ll tell you, it’s one of the simplest and most effective ways to turn your dreams into your reality is to simply schedule time because what you focus on expands, what you put your energy into, what you give your energy to, that’s how you manifest it into reality. Not in a magical way, not in a woo-woo, sit back and look at your vision board and wait for things to magically happen sort of way. No, you manifest it because when you put energy and attention into it, you start to have breakthroughs. You learn things that you can apply that make that possibility a probability. And the more time you spend on the possibility, the more probable it becomes.
And I do this often when I have an idea like a new book I want to write or even improve my relationship with my daughter. I mentioned that a couple of weeks ago. I felt like a disconnect with my daughter as she’s getting older and felt like she was pulling away from me. And then I started reading this book, Untangled. That was a few months ago. That helped, but then I stopped reading that. And then I read this book, Strong Fathers, Strong Daughters: 30-Day Challenge. And it’s one idea in that book, one idea in that book– I mean, multiple ideas in that book, but have been breakthroughs in my relationship with Sophia, my daughter.
And so, it’s simply a matter of scheduling time to work on your possibilities. That’s how you turn them from possibilities into probabilities. And again, not rocket science, but it works simply. And for you, what do you want in your life? What do you want to improve? Your marriage, your health, your finances, your career, starting a business, writing a book, running a marathon, whatever it is for you, consider it as a possibility and then schedule time to work on it.
When I ran that ultramarathon, I ran an ultramarathon in 2009, I think, it’s how did I do it? I was scared. I’m like, I’ve never run before. But then what did I do? I bought a book called The Non-Runner’s Marathon Trainer, the Non-Runner’s Marathon Trainer for people that weren’t runners. And it helped you to the psychology of I’m not a runner, I’ve never run before. How am I going to run a marathon or a double marathon? And by spending time focused on that possibility, it became a probability.
And then step three is turn your probabilities into inevitabilities. If you’re taking notes, turn your probabilities into inevitabilities. What does that mean? How do you do that? Well, a possibility is an idea, right? That’s step one. You’ve got to start with the idea. What’s possible? What do I want? What might I be able to accomplish? It’s a possibility.
Step two, making it a probability is scheduling time consistently, like daily. Each day, spend 30 minutes on that possibility. Or maybe it’s just Monday, Wednesday, Friday that you work on the possibility so it can become a probability. Or maybe it’s just on the weekend, depending on your allotted time. Maybe it’s in the evening, whatever it is. Step two, turning into that probability is the more time you spend on it, the more probable it becomes. And then step three, to turn your probability into an inevitability, it’s simply committing until, commit until for as long as it takes, commit until. Most people aren’t willing to commit at all. But those that commit, they usually only commit as long as they feel like staying committed.
And once their initial excitement wears off, they’re not committed anymore. Or once they encounter a roadblock, they’re not committed anymore. Or once it gets tedious and exhausting, they’re not committed anymore. And that possibility that they gave birth to by considering it and then turned it into a probability by scheduling consistent time to focus on it, think about it, learn about it, work on it, it fizzles out into nothing because they weren’t committed for as long as it took.
And for me, I think about the biggest example of this, and I would imagine you’ve heard me share the story, and this is a very short version of it. But for me, the possibility that I considered step one considering an inspiring possibility was selling a million copies of The Miracle Morning, and I turned it into a probability by scheduling time every morning, first to write the book, and then to work on marketing the book and figuring out. I bought a book called Secrets– or The Making of a Bestseller, I think.
I know I bought like five books on how to market your book. So, I could learn how to get out there and share my message and so on and so forth. And as I was reading those books, that possibility of selling a million books became a probability because I was learning what I needed to do to make it happen. Then I committed, I gave it everything I had for a year. And you probably know the story. I sold 13,000 copies that year instead of a million. I was trying for a million. I sold 13,000. I fell short of my goal by 987,000 copies or 98.7%. I fell short by 98.7%.
If I wouldn’t have committed to step three to turn probabilities into inevitabilities by committing until. You underline that word until because it’s like however long it takes it might take you. You might think it’s going to take you a year and it takes you ten or five. Is it important enough for you to stay committed until you get there for however long it takes? And for me, I was discouraged, after that year, I felt like giving up, but I was like, no, I’m committed. I owe it to those million people that don’t know about the Miracle Morning and this could transform their life. I have a responsibility to keep going for as long as it takes, even if it takes the rest of my life. I’m going to die feeling happy and fulfilled knowing that I gave it everything I had to help as many people as I possibly could.
And I tried year two, I sold 27,000 copies. I was at 40,000 copies now. I was still 960,000 copies short of my goal. And I was on track to hit the goal by, I think, age 110, if I remember correctly, which I don’t know if I’ll be alive then, but I kept at it. And step three, to turn your probabilities into inevitabilities, committing for as long as it takes. And it took me six years.
But remember this lesson, when you finally get there, when you finally reach the goal, when you finally achieve the thing that you’ve been working so hard for so long, it’s always worth it. The timing is always perfect. You always look back and you rarely wish it would have happened any sooner. Instead you go, “Oh, it was supposed to take this long.” I had to go through the ups and the downs because that self-doubt that I felt and pushing through it, that helped me develop character and resiliency that I’m going to pass on to other people. I’m going to share with my kids. Or they saw me live. They saw me live that they saw me push through my fears and my doubts and my insecurities. I saw me push through my fears, doubts, and insecurities. I became a better version of myself. And if it would have been easy, I wouldn’t have developed that resiliency in that character that’s now going to serve me for the rest of my life.
So, I want to sum up the entire episode here in a Cliff Notes, two-minute version here. Remember, this whole episode started because Susie Moore said, “If you get into the end of your life and look back, who was really the most successful person? Was it the one with the biggest house, the nicest car, the most money? Or was it the person who enjoyed their life the most?” And I went, “Wow, Susie. I think it’s the person that enjoyed their life the most.” You enjoy your life, but you’re rich and famous. What’s the point? How can I be successful? But if you have a mediocre financial existence and you’re not famous, nobody knows who you are, but you love yourself and you love your family and you spend time doing things that you love, living below your means and just enjoying this one life and blessed to live, damn, you win. You win. You figured it out. You’re the most successful person because you enjoyed life.
And again, this is all subjective, right? You get to choose if you decide that no, no, no, no, no. The measure of success is the measure of the amount of money you make, right? Okay. Then, usually, what you find is you make $100,000 in a year and then you look at the person making a million, you’re like, “Oh, man, I need to make more.” Then you make a million and you look at the person making 10 million, you go, “Oh, man, I need to make more. I’m not successful.” The comparison game gets stronger, I feel like the more outwardly successful you are because that’s what you’re focused on. And so, therefore, you’re looking at other people that are achieving outward success and you’re always seeing that, wow, there’s more available.
But if you see other people that are happier than you and that’s what you’re aspiring to, is true happiness and joy, it’s not the same measurement. You’re not measuring a billionaire versus a millionaire. You’re going, “Hey, are you happy?” “Yeah, I am.” “Are you fulfilled? Do you feel grateful every day for this life that you’re living?” This person, “Yeah, I do.” “Me too.” “Wow. We both are successful. We’re equally successful.”
When you’re living the game that our society is perpetuated, that you’re measuring your success, fulfillment, happiness on outward success, then that’s a losing game because you can never get enough. You’ll never reach the pinnacle because there’s always more, there’s always more. But when you reach a level of true, authentic joy, happiness, success, fulfillment, like inner fulfillment, inner freedom, you’re not measuring it in the same way. Once you get there, you’re there. Once you’re happy, you’re happy. Could you be happier? Maybe. You can strive for that to be the most happy and fulfilled you can.
But if you’re happy and you meet somebody else that’s happy, you both just share in your happiness and your gratitude. There’s no measuring stick. Okay, well, how happy are you, though? Like, how happy are you? It’s like, I don’t know, I’m happy. Yeah, okay. All right. No, there’s not the competition in the same way that there is with the outward success.
So, all right, goal achievers and members of the Miracle Morning Community, I hope this has been helpful for you. Again, it’s about both inner success and outer success. Inner success is how you feel about your life and yourself and the people in your life and you get to choose that. You can choose which page you focus on, the negative or the positive, right? You get to choose which you focus on. So, you can focus on how great your life is while you make it the best it can possibly be.
And every day you wake up and you focus on optimizing your health and optimizing your relationships and optimizing your financial situation, right? You create possibilities that are inspiring in each of those areas, and then you transform your possibilities into probabilities by scheduling time to work on each one every day or ongoing every week. And then you commit to keep working in those areas and you find fulfillment in that journey, in that process of self-actualization. I love you so much. I hope you’re doing well today. And let’s make it a great day because there is no reason not to. Love you so much. Talk to you next week.