30 Days to New Ways: How to Revolutionize Your Morning
I like to consider myself an improvement junky of sorts. Years of enthrallment into addiction and self-loathing had such an impact on my life, that in order to restore equilibrium it was going to take some radical change and effort.
I began my search for a better life in the rabbit hole of occult knowledge and esoteric healing techniques. Before long, I was headed on an incredible journey of magical self-discovery. Through the use of holistic healing modalities, my entire life began to change.
I started implementing daily affirmations, breathing exercises, meditation sessions, and my yoga practice began to blossom more effortlessly. These new techniques really opened up the doors of happiness and flooded my life with a new sense of being.
My quest for equilibrium eventually brought me to a place where acquiring knowledge of self-improvement became a daily ritual. I started absorbing the guidance of self-made icons such as Tony Robbins, Tim Ferris, and Aubrey Marcus. I started reading and researching so much into the world of betterment that I discovered so many doors that lead to becoming a better person.
One such book stood out above the rest. Miracle Morning is a book by Hal Elrod.
In his book, he emphasizes the importance of a morning routine, and how implementing one could drastically change your life, much like it had himself! He showcases numerous transformation stories and downright miraculous changes that have happened in people’s lives after utilizing a morning ritual.
This intrigued me and eventually lead to my own experimentation with my morning routine. Taking Hal’s basic blueprint and including the modalities, I’ve already learned throughout my healing journey,
I decided to design a vigorous morning routine and partake in it for 30 days.
It wasn’t long before the perfect opportunity to kick start this project manifested.
I was just after returning from a transformational journey to Peru. After numerous ceremonies and revelations during my time abroad, I was feeling super invigorated and teeming with motivation.
I knew this was a great time to begin my 30-day master plan to wellness!
Using Hal’s morning ritual as a compass, and my previous acquiring of self-improvement techniques, I designed an ambitious and exciting plan.
For the next 30 days, I would rise at 7:00 am and begin my day implementing my favorite self-improvement modalities
Meditation, yoga, fasting, gratitude practice, affirmations, breathwork, and exercise. I even added some new and unexplored techniques such as semen retention, low carb eating, and cold exposure.
Let’s break down each component of my routine and what they entail.
Meditation is the practice of focusing your attention on a specific object. This could be the breath, a candle, a mantra, or even the ambient sounds around you. Meditation appears in many forms throughout many different religions and belief systems throughout the world and has been proven to relax the mind and bring forth a stronger sense of focus and of self.
Yoga is a Sanskrit word meaning “Union”. It is the act of becoming uniting one’s “self” with the entirety of existence through the practice of breathwork, body postures, meditation practice, and self-inquiry. Yoga has become a worldwide phenomenon, touching the lives of millions.
Wim Hof Method (WHM)
Developed by “Ice Man” Wim Hof of the Netherlands, this technique combines a simple breathwork regimen with the invigorating practice of cold exposure. Through the exploration of this combo, Wim has defied science and hacked the parasympathetic nervous system allowing him to override it. He has climbed Everest in nothing but his underwear and has been injected with snake venom to which he effectively eliminated from his body using the technique he developed. For a more comprehensive overview of the Wim Hof Method (WHM) please visit:
Intermittent fasting is the act of eliminating food for a period of time each day. Fasting allows the body ample time to digest your food properly, freeing up energy for use in other vital processes. We are actually intermittent fasting each day when we stop eating and break the fast when we eat “break-fast”. Intermittent fasting aims to increase the time period in which you are fasting. Most commonly practiced is the 16:8 hour ratio, fasting for 16 hours, with an eating window of 8. This is the timeframe I adhered to, ending my eating window at 8:00 pm and breaking my fast at 12:00 pm the next afternoon.
Gratitude practice consists of bringing attention to the things you are grateful for each day and expanding this awareness to every aspect of your life and those around you. It can be utilized through writing, speaking, or simply through the intention of thought.
Affirmations are statements that typically follow the words “I am”. I am courageous, I am loved, and I am happiness are all great examples of affirmations. They can be as simple or complex as you feel. Even to the extent of “I am manifesting opportunities and encounters with perfectly attuned individuals that align with my dreams and goals on a daily basis.”
The more specific the affirmation, the more effective they tend to be. Affirmations strengthen our inner powers and inspire us to take the necessary steps to achieve our goals. They have the ability to awaken our dormant superpowers!
The low carb diet consists of reducing the number of carbs we intake. Keto is a popular low carb diet and has many proven benefits. I think it’s important to clarify that I did not follow a ketogenic diet but did drastically reduce my carb consumption. I cut out potatoes, all grains, most fruits, and all sweeteners including natural ones such as honey, maple syrup, and stevia.
Semen retention is the act of restricting yourself from ejaculation for a period of time in order to preserve vital life energy, rather than wasting it. Our ancient ancestors knew the importance of this, and it is apparent throughout many cultures around the world.
One of the most notable traditions is that of Taoist origins. Taoists believe that by removing ejaculation and preserving our semen, we effectively harness the creative energy of life. It can even be used to reach a multi-orgasmic state, much like that of female orgasms. Semen retention is much like fasting in the sense that it redirects energy to other vital processes in the body rather than constantly creating semen.
It’s also important to note that semen retention does not mean “no sex”. It just means that you resist the urge of spilling your vital life force. This topic is so complex that I’m going to devote a whole entire series of posts to this! The transformation I felt from this technique alone has been remarkably profound.
I hand-picked these techniques because they each touched on an aspect of my life that I sought to improve: mental health, physical and emotional stamina, relationship with food, and overall ability to control cravings and urges. I wanted to strengthen my will power and fine-tune my focus so I could continue to grow spiritually, emotionally, and physically, and I wanted to use these 30 days to rocket launch myself into the next dimension of my personal evolution.
HOW I IMPLEMENTED IT
Any routine is not complete without some sort of system that measures the effectiveness of the routine. I wanted to make sure I was sticking to my daily goals and maintained the motivation to continue for the full thirty days. In order to do this, I made use of some simple organizational tools:
Lists are a great tool to use when undertaking any endeavor. They allow you to extract information from your brain and prioritize tasks and to-dos. I use them to write out my goals, my daily schedule, and when outlining pieces of writing – like this blog post! They make it easier to visualize the next step in achieving your goals and they activate your reward system when you check things off your list!
I kept a journal of daily accomplishments such as the length of my daily walk or the length of time I spent during my Wim Hof breathing exercises. I also utilized the information provided by my fitbit and was sure to keep track of yoga practices and the time spent in certain poses. Keeping accurate measurements of progress can help keep you motivated and informs your of where you’re at in terms of achieving certain goals. It’s always great to look back and see how far you’ve come!
Made a morning Schedule.
I made a morning schedule that would be a non-negotiable for the next 30 days. I wrote out the same schedule in my planner and crossed them off each morning as I completed them. I found this process extremely rewarding; looking back at all the crossed off things really motivated me to keep going. The schedule acted as an overseer. I didn’t have anyone telling me to stick to the plan, or cheering me on, but seeing the unchecked to-dos on the schedule each morning was a great motivator to continue!
Here’s the schedule I used each morning:
Rise at 7:00 am
Upon waking I almost immediately drink a large glass of lemon water to kick start the day and get my body working. Then, I take my B12 vitamin, make my bed, and head to my meditation space.
Meditate for 20 minutes
I always start my day off with a twenty-minute meditation session so I can smooth out the wrinkles in my thinking brain. This allows me to be more open and relaxed when stressful situations pop up throughout the day. A simple practice of focusing on the ebb and flow of breath can have profound benefits!
Next, I hit the yoga mat and stretch out any tightness and anxiety. I like to take part in online challenges and monthly programs! Yoga with Adriene is a great start for any beginner looking to get into yoga. She has many 30-day challenges and videos. I used her “home” series on her YouTube channel for my thirty days! I found this took the decision-making fatigue out of the scenario! All I had to do was show up for the video each day.
Wim Hof Method (Breathing)
The primary aspect of the Wim Him Method is a signature style of breathwork. It is simple and super easy to implement! You start out by taking full deep breaths into the lungs, for thirty cycles. Then, on the exhale, you hold the breath and time the retention. You repeat this sequence at least three times. There’s an app that keeps track of your retention times, gives you handy charts, and helps you measure your progress. Check it out here
I made extra use of this time by utilizing my gratitude and affirmation practice during the breath retentions.
When I was holding, I would run through all the things I was grateful for in my head: my mom, my cat, the fresh oxygen I’m about in breath, my best friend, my supper I had the day before, etc. Then on the next retention I would focus on affirmations such as: I am actively manifesting a life of abundance, love, prosperity, and joy; I attract those in true alignment with my future goals; I am happy, healthy, wealthy, wise, etc. I would alternate between these focuses during each retention until the session was complete.
Walk for One Hour
After I flood my body rich with oxygen, I head out for a lengthy walk. I aimed to reach 10, 000 steps on my Fitbit tracker, which usually worked out to be roughly an hour of fast-paced walking. I would utilize this time by listening to informative podcasts and audiobooks! I found this immensely beneficial because it was like surrounding myself with infinite sources of support and inspiration at all times! I really enjoyed motivational content as seen on such podcasts as Aubrey Marcus Podcast, Tim Ferris Show, School of Greatness, and the GaryVee Show.
Wim Hof Method (Ice Cold Shower)
Lastly, upon returning to my abode, energized and motivated, I hop in the shower to tie up the last portion of my epic morning prep-up! This part I struggled with the most. A part of the Wim Hof Method consists of regular cold exposure, starting with ice-cold showers, leading up to ice b baths, and eventually taking dips in icy lakes and oceans.
I really cannot express how TANTALIZINGLY REFRESHING this was for me. I would start by doing my normal shower routine in lukewarm water, after each stage of my shower (shampoo, conditioning, washing, etc) I would decrease the temperature slightly in order to prepare for the pure cold exposure at the end. Once I was completed my showerly to-dos, I turned the temp all the way to cold and endured for at least one minute.
Its recommended to work up by 15-second increments. I would be lying if I said I managed to stick to the showers every day, but I managed to work my cold exposure to 1:30 before my 30 days was complete!
Here are my results!
Wow, what an incredible month.
I had no idea when I set out to do this personal challenge that I would emerge out the other side as drastically changed as I did. I figured this would be a great way to integrate all the lessons I learned in Peru, and it was, but it turned out to be MUCH more than that.
I wanted to prove to myself that I am capable of holding my intentions. I was dead set on dusting the sediment off of the inner me that was screaming to be released back into the world. I knew deep down in my heart there was another aspect of myself that had yet to make an appearance.
The 30 days allowed me to connect with that inner me.
The me that was numbed for so long.
The me that was stuck under years of abuse and turmoil.
It’s remarkable that this simple disruption to my comfort zone allowed me to emerge on the other side more authentically myself.
I learned SO much about the person I am on the inside.
Years of addiction and attachment to suffering clouded my mind and held me back in so many ways. This challenge gave me the time and much-needed space to figure out who I am really am after all these years of suppressing and burying my emotions.
I had SO many spiritual breakthroughs, so many personal revelations, and I was so immensely impacted that partway through my thirty days, I was inspired to take the next step in my life
I learned that I need to follow a path of service and help others reach this state of healing and a sense of “coming back” to one’s self.
I was SO deeply inspired and spiritually motivated that I decided to take my practice that much further and become a yoga teacher and spread this ancient method of union to those around me!
This integration period made me realize that all these years of addiction were just preparing me for my soul purpose – that of helping others heal from the same afflictions that I did!
WOW. Who knew so much could change in just 30 days?
Not only did I discover my soul purpose, but I also:
- Lost weight
- Developed a deeper voice (from semen retention) More about this soon!
- Had increased levels of energy
- Became more comfortable being alone
- Less hormonal
- Had a more intimate connection with a sense of higher power
- Discovered how to harness sexual energy for productivity, vitality, and success
- Learned more about human connections and which genre of people to welcome into my life.
- Solidified my resolve
- Connected more authentically with those around me
- Became more centered
I had comfortable expectations entering this month of self-discipline. I anticipated a stronger yoga practice, but under no circumstances did I imagine taking the next steps to becoming a teacher (I officially signed up for teachers training and began studying yoga philosophy)
I figured I would feel a bit more energetic from the increase in exercise, but I NOT expect to lose 10 pounds! (also noticed a huge increase in muscle formation and general stamina)
The semen retention was one thing I had very LITTLE expectations from but it turned out to be one of the most enlightening, empowering, and transformational things I’ve ever done, up there with ayahuasca and psilocybin mushrooms. I have so much to say about this topic that I’m devoting a whole series of blog posts on it. As of writing this I’m on day 34 of my semen retention journey. I’ll be documenting this much further so stay tuned!
All in all, this past month has been one of the most enlightening periods, allowing tremendous strides in my personal growth.
I set out to prove a few things to myself and came out the other side completely awestruck at the possibilities a few changes could allot a person.
I’m writing this in hopes to plant a seed of inspiration in your hearts as well. Perhaps it’s time for you to develop a 30-day challenge that’s relevant to your goals and aspirations!
I had no idea this experiment would turn out so blissfully fruitful as it did. I am now continuing the daily practice that I spawned with this challenge into the foreseeable future.
I plan to dive even deeper into these esoteric techniques and bring back what I learn so I can share the revelations with all of you.
I invite you to take the next step on your path and challenge yourself to 30 days of small changes!
It does not have to be to the extent I went, even changing one simple thing such as waking up an hour earlier and meditating could prove to have outrageously badass advantages.
There is untapped potential in each and every single person on this planet, and with a little nudge, we can be well on our way to success and infinite happiness. For me, the nudge I needed was 30 days of empowerment and self-discovery. Perhaps you can find a similar nudge in a similar endeavor.
Let me know if you decide to take the plunge! I am eager to hear the transformation stories of each and every one of you!