Celebrating Four Years of Blogging

Four years ago I took a leap of faith and hit publish on this little blog of mine. Since then, I’ve learned so much about blogging, writing and social media and had a lot of fun in the process. I’ve had some amazing opportunities with partners and sponsors and am always honored when amazing companies want to work with me. I mentioned in my Miracle Morning post at the beginning of the year, that this last year was personally very difficult for me. My posts have been fewer and further between, but I’m glad I pushed through and didn’t give this up. For those of you that have kept reading, I LOVE having you here. My sincerest wish for this site is for you to imagine we are enjoying some girl talk over a glass of wine.

As I tried to take some photos, Sport kept trying to eat my candle – this little boy brings me tons of joy! I thought Sport and I would announce my annual blogiversary giveaway with a month of giveaways. Enter the giveaway below and each week I will choose another winner.

Week 1 – August 8

I started The Miracle Morning this year and it has changed everything! I want to help someone else change their life so I’m giving away a copy of Hal Elrod’s The Miracle Morning as my first prize.

Week 2 – August 15

This year, I was able to attend a screening of Beauty and the Beast and this was one of my favorite movies. Of all the Disney princesses I most identified with Belle. As a child I always had my nose in a book. I loved the live action movie so much and want to give away a little piece of the story to my readers. My second prize is this Beauty and the Beast stained glass rose compact. It is so beautiful!

Week 3 – August 22

Speaking of movie screenings, I covered 50 Shades Darker this year and had SO much fun at the screening and pulling together Anastasia’s looks from the movie. I’m a huge romance novel fan (my guilty pleasure) and 50 Shades is one of my favorites. I recently re-read the books and wanted to give one reader her very own masquerade mask. This is the authentic Samantha Peach mask that Anastasia wore in the movie.

Week 4 – August 29

Last but not least, is this adorable little pineapple planter from my Summer Favorites list. I am obsessed with pineapples right now and I thought this would look perfect in someone’s home.

You can enter the giveaway here, and I will announce a new winner each week. Thank you for all of your support over the past four years!

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The Miracle Morning – 180 Days

I just hit the 180 day mark on my Miracle Morning journey and thought I would give you a little update! In case you missed my introduction post, you can see it here, my 60 day post here, and my 90 day post here.

Something amazing is happening! Since my last post, a few of my friends have starting doing The Miracle Morning after seeing my process on a recent girls trip. I love that we are all pushing each other forward! Our texts have changed to sharing fun motivation posts and asking meditation questions. This by far is one of the best outcomes of starting this journey.

Achieving 180 days of The Miracle Morning requires a lot of discipline. When I get questions about my routine, many people ask how I have time to focus every day. My answer is that some days are more hectic than others. The important thing is consistency. If you can’t do a full blown workout – do a 10 minute ab workout. It’s about quantity more than quality on some days. The second you stop doing it, the easier it is to not start back up again the next day.

Here are a few things I’ve added to my routine in the past 90 days:

Essential Oils

I wrote a post on adding essential oils to my meditation and morning routine. Right now I am using peppermint, lavender, rosemary and lemon in my diffuser, but hope to add more to my collection soon. I had a lot of trips scheduled in June and brought peppermint along for the ride. It was so helpful to get me in the Miracle Morning mindset when I was in a different place. Smell is really powerful in bringing you back to your routine.

Meditation

I’m still loving the Headspace app and it recently received an update. One of the great new features is that you can change the time of your meditation daily instead of sticking with only 10 minutes for an entire pack. For example, if you have extra time you can up your meditation to 15 or 20 minutes and then go back to 10 minutes the next day. Headspace also shared this new video – if this doesn’t convince you of the importance of meditation I’m not sure what will:

Reading

I completed The Power of Consistency by Weldon Long and I highly recommend it. Weldon has an incredible back story as a 3-time convicted felon. If he can make affirmations and visualization work in an 8×8 prison cell, what’s your excuse? I would love to read his other book, The Upside of Fear which shares more of his personal journey.

If you’re still not doing The Miracle Morning, what’s stopping you? Watch the following video with Hal Elrod himself explaining how The Miracle Morning can transform your life:

How are you sticking to The Miracle Morning?

For more Be the Best You posts, click here.



The Miracle Morning – 90 Days

I am thrilled to share that I recently hit 90 days in my Miracle Morning journey! In case you missed my introduction post, you can see it here and my 60 days post here. Since I started doing the Miracle Morning, I have been more on track and focused on my goals than ever before. I can see a number of positive changes already happening in my life which makes me even more determined. If you still aren’t convinced that getting up early is a good thing, take a look at this article from Business Insider on all of the successful CEOs that are incorporating parts of The Miracle Morning into their routines. I never considered myself a morning person, but if I can do it, so can you!

If you’ve been following along, I’m going to share a few insights and tips I have learned or added to the morning routine for each of the SAVERS.

Silence

I am still loving the Headspace app more than ever! Now that it has warmed up and I’m walking the dog again, I’ve been using the Walking Meditation available in the Singles section. I haven’t mentioned it yet, but after the first 30 days I wanted to add some devotions to my silence. We had a copy of Jesus Lives in our guest room and I have been doing that every day after my meditation.

Affirmations

I’m still loving the ThinkUp App for my affirmations and I recently discovered that you can categorize them. So I could have a set that I listen to in the morning and some on the way to work, etc. Over the past 30 days, I have hit two of the goals that I have been saying daily affirmations for. I can’t tell you how exciting it was to do that. One was a money goal that I set a specific time limit to (end of Q1) and the other was my water goal. Ever since I got the Hidrate Spark, I went from barely getting in 8 ounces a day to exceeding 100 ounces everyday! Both were HUGE accomplishments for me. Stay tuned for a full review of the Hidrate Spark in an upcoming post. I also want to create a group of bedtime affirmations that are specifically targeted for the next day and start a night routine as well. I’m sharing this video just for fun – you have to own your affirmations people!

Visualization

This is the area I have the most trouble with. I am still using my HayHouseVB app but think I need to step it up a bit. Someone in the Miracle Morning Facebook Community suggested YouTube visualization videos and I am just starting to incorporate them into my morning. For example, one of the things I am visualizing is taking a trip to Paris, so I found this video which is 100 times better than just looking at photos:

Exercise

Now that it has warmed up again, Sport and I are back at our morning walks. I try to get 10,000 steps each day which is hard to do without our walk. About a month ago I accidentally flushed my Fitbit Zip down the toilet so I couldn’t track my steps anymore. This was the perfect reason to upgrade to the FitBit One, which I love! This added a sleep tracker and the ability to set an alarm. So I now have an alarm set on my Fitbit to vibrate and wake me up in the morning. How cool is that?

Reading

I finally finished Think and Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill. That one was a harder read just because of the outdated language, but the principles are great. I took a short stop to my next book to read Michael Ellsburg’s manifesto What Does it Mean That Your Life is Perfect? This was recommended in one of Hal Elrod’s podcasts and it is a free download and only about 40 pages.

Scribing

This is another SAVER that I am still working on. One thing I want to incorporate into this next round is adding one thing that I’m grateful for each day.

How are you sticking to The Miracle Morning?

For more Be the Best You posts, click here.



The Miracle Morning – 60 Days

I wanted to give a little update to my original Miracle Morning post. I recently hit the 60 day mark and wanted to share some of my tips and tricks for my SAVERS and hopefully get some tips from you if you’re following along at home.

Silence

I am OBSESSED with the Headspace app. The first 10 days are free and then you subscribe for a nominal fee. I recommend doing the first 10 days free and then subscribing afterwards. I have a few free month trial codes if anyone is interested. The first two people to email me at elizabeth@detroitduchess.com can have them. I will put you on the list after that in case I get more. Also let me know if you are using this because we can be meditation buddies!

Affirmations

For my affirmations, I got an app called “Think Up.” You can type your affirmations and then record yourself saying them. Every morning I play them back to myself.

Visualization

To help visualize my goals, I downloaded the HayHouseVB app, which is essentially an online vision board. I like that you can create a bunch of different boards and I have a lot of fun with this. Plus they are always with me and I can look at them anytime.

Exercise

Since we are in the winter months, I’ve had to find some alternatives to walking as it is FREEZING outside. When I lost weight in the past, I was an avid follower of The FIRM workout plan. I found out that The FIRM was acquired by Gaia and that you can get all of their workout videos from the Gaia app. So I went ahead and got myself a subscription. This has been one of the best investments I’ve made! I LOVE these workouts and I love being able to do them on our Apple TV. You can find all of The FIRM workouts here. I also like that I can get any kind of workout I want at anytime anywhere from Gaia. Here’s a little taste from YouTube in case you’ve never done one before:

Reading

I finished 10% Happier, my pick from the first 30 days and now am onto Think and Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill. This one was recommending by Hal Elrod and he noted it was where he first heard about affirmations. The book is interesting because it was written in 1937 and published during the Great Depression. Most of it still holds up today and I love that it is a collection of real world examples of 20 years of studying successful people.

Scribing

This has probably been the hardest area for me because I’m not really sure what I’m supposed to be doing here. I did end up purchasing the official Miracle Morning Journal because I like the SAVERS checkboxes. You can get a free sample here.

How are you sticking to The Miracle Morning?

For more Be the Best You posts, click here.



The Miracle Morning

Hello readers! I’m back!

Long story short, 2016 was tough on a personal level and I was definitely pushed to my breaking point. This forced me to re-evaluate my priorities and focus on what was most important. I worked really hard and ended the year on top with a big promotion at work. I had planned to kick off the year with this post, but got hit with a bad case of pneumonia, which is why I’m hitting the restart button on 2017 now.

Last year, I was turned on to The Miracle Morning by Hal Elrod and have been following parts of it ever since. I decided that I would really commit to it in 2017 and wanted to invite you to join me.

I first heard about The Miracle Morning on Episode 37 of the Marriage More podcast with Jeff and Mandy Rose. They interviewed Hal Elrod and I was blown away by his story! From being on top of the world to a horrific car accident, Hal had every reason to give up. But that’s not what he did. His optimism inspired me and I was hooked. From the podcast I was inspired to start getting up early and doing some of the things that Hal outlines in his miracle morning. After hearing this, I started listening to Hal’s podcast and then I bought and read the book.

Essentially, The Miracle Morning is a lifestyle change that will help you achieve Level 10 success in every aspect of your life. The crazy thing is it’s really simple. The premise is that you have to wake up early and then do a routine of self-improvement activities (Life SAVERS) before you start your day.

I’m inviting you to start this process with me for the next 30 days and I will outline a few of the things that I am going to focus on with my Life SAVERS.

Silence

On one of Hal’s podcasts, he recommended the Simply Being app to help with meditation and the times I’ve used it, I thought it was extremely helpful.

Affirmations

The next step is to write your affirmations down and review them every morning. Here is one that I liked and will use to kick this off.

Visualization

I plan to do my Miracle Morning in our office, so I want to create a larger vision board that I can focus on during my SAVERS. I have a few small ones right now, but I want to make a bigger board for 2017.

Exercise

Normally I love to walk Sport in the morning, but right now it’s too cold so I will be hitting my morning yoga class until it is warm enough to start walking him again.

Reading

To kick off the first 30-day challenge, I am planning to start reading 10% Happier by Dan Harris. Dan is a Nightline anchor who had a nationally televised panic attack on Good Morning America. Afterwards, he decided to make a change and learn about meditation. I’ve been listening to Dan’s podcast for a while and love it! I had no idea so many people meditate every day. I figured this would be a good book to start with as I will be meditating now.

Scribing

The last SAVER is scribing or journaling. I am terrible at this, I hate writing my thoughts down on paper, but there are a number of benefits to doing this. Hal recommends The Winners’ Journal for this and I also have The 5-Minute Journal app to get me started.

Will you start The Miracle Morning Challenge with me? I loved this quote from the book and thought it would might help convince you.

For more Be the Best You posts, click here.



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