As I’ve previously written, the principal job can be a tough one. I used to think that each year gets easier with additional experience, but I haven’t found that to be true. This past year was my 6th year with some exciting things, like embarking on a 1:1 iPad journey and being recognized as the 2014 WI Elementary Principal of the Year. Despite these celebrations (among others) it was still a challenging year that left me completely exhausted and nearly burned out by the end. As I reflected at the start of this summer as to why I felt this way, I realized that I neglected my mental/physical health all year and even, at times, my family. While I still work during the summer, the schedule is more laid back, so I made a commitment to making some changes that will hopefully become new healthy habits before the hectic schedule starts again come late August.
I mistakingly came across The Miracle Morning, a self-help book by Hal Elrod while listening to The 5 AM Miracle Podcast. I immediately downloaded the book and devoured it within 2 days, making changes to my morning routine. I have always been a morning person, yet that typically meant getting up early (usually 5 AM) to get to school before anyone else entered the building so I could get as much work done as possible. That’s great, but I still stayed until 5 everyday, then went home exhausted and cranky nearly everyday. I rarely had the energy to exercise or take care of me.
As I listed to The Morning Miracle, one of the most powerful quotes from Hal in the book (I believe he was quoting someone else) that made an impact on me was:
“Your level of success rarely exceeds your level of personal development, because success is something you attract by the person you become.”
I have always worked on improving my professional self, but I often neglect personal self development. Since listening to The Miracle Morning, I have been waking up each day with new purpose, going through each of the morning self-development components which Hal named the SAVERS:
S-Silence (or meditation, contemplation)
I have been going to bed earlier (a typical night used to be 11:30 for me) and getting up earlier so I can spend time on the SAVERS before anyone else in the house is up. Since implementing my miracle morning, I’m amazed by how much I’ve accomplished and how it has spilled over into everything else in the rest of each my days…my productivity, my time with my family, healthy eating, etc. My new morning routine sets my mindset and context for the rest of my day.
I immediately shared this with my PrincipalCast co-hosts, Spike Cook and Theresa Stager, because we’ve had previous conversations on the podcast about what our mornings are like. They also jumped on board with The Miracle Morning, shared it with others and we now have a voxer accountability chat group for a morning check-in. We are so excited about the impact of The Miracle Morning that we have invited Hal Elrod to join us on a future podcast…cross your fingers!
Want to learn more? Find it here:
Hal’s podcast: Achieve Your Goals Podcast (not just about TMM)