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Unformatted text preview: Copyright © 2019 by Hal Elrod All rights reserved. Published in the United States by Harmony Books, an imprint of the Crown Publishing Group, a division of Penguin Random House LLC, New York. crownpublishing.com Harmony Books is a registered trademark, and the Circle colophon is a trademark of Penguin Random House LLC. Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data Names: Elrod, Hal, 1979– author. Title: The miracle equation / Hal Elrod. Description: New York : Harmony Books, [2019] Identifiers: LCCN 2018058103 | ISBN 9781984823700 (hardcover) | ISBN 9781984823724 (ebook) Subjects: LCSH: Self-realization. | Self-actualization (Psychology) Classification: LCC BF637.S4 E4455 2019 | DDC 158.1—dc23 LC record available at ISBN 9781984823700 Ebook ISBN 9781984823724 Cover design by Pete Garceau v5.4 ep This book is dedicated to the people whom my heart belongs to and my world revolves around—my family. Ursula, my wife for life, your love and support make everything I do possible (including this book). I adore you. Sophie and Halsten, you are my favorite miracles. My mission in life is to be the best father I can possibly be for you. I love you all more than I (or any author) could ever put into words. CONTENTS Introduction: Before We Begin 1 Taking the Mystery Out of Miracles 2 From Impossible…to Improbable…to Inevitable 3 The Inherent Human Conflict 4 Becoming Emotionally Invincible 5 A New Paradigm of Possibility 6 Your Mission 7 Your First Decision: Unwavering Faith 8 Your Second Decision: Extraordinary Effort 9 Maintaining Miracles 10 The Miracle Equation 30-Day Challenge Conclusion: What Will You Do Now? Acknowledgments BEFORE WE BEGIN I messed up with my last book, The Miracle Morning. My goal was to change one million lives, one morning at a time. I took that goal seriously. It took more than eighteen months of nonstop promotion to hit a wave of momentum and more than five years to reach that goal, but the book did eventually make it into the hands of more than one million people who needed it. To get there, I was interviewed on hundreds of podcasts, did more than a dozen television interviews, filled my speaking engagement calendar, and created a Facebook community so I could interact with readers directly, all to light a beacon for those looking to better themselves with a simple yet highly effective daily personal development practice. From the outside, it looked as though I had achieved that goal. If you are one of the more than one million people who have read that book, joined the Miracle Morning Community on Facebook, or been impacted by someone in the previous two camps, you may be scratching your head and wondering How can a book and a message that have reached—and seemingly helped—so many people not be considered a success? I know. It took me a while to accept this perspective myself. I mean, by all measurements, I had achieved my goal. The Miracle Morning is now practiced daily by hundreds of thousands of people in more than one hundred countries. I receive messages daily from people with stories of miraculous health recoveries (from cancer survivors to accident victims), many pounds shed, books written, and new businesses started. People have moved, traveled, and found love. Generally speaking, the Miracle Morning has supported countless people to discover and share their own unique gifts, which makes the world better for all of us. All of these wins fill my heart with tremendous gratitude. Still, something had been nagging at me since that book was published in 2012. Though having a committed daily personal development practice is what will enable you to develop the internal qualities and characteristics you need to achieve everything you want in your life, it doesn’t actually produce achievements. It’s only half of the equation, so to speak. You can meditate every day, read personal development books, gain clarity by journaling, and become the most knowledgeable, confident, and prepared person you could ever be—and then do nothing. How helpful is that? Maybe this scenario sounds familiar to you. Your bookshelves are overflowing with more wisdom than you have time to read, or you are a regular at “how to transform your life” lectures and conferences. Still, you feel as though something is missing. The results just aren’t there. Your bank account isn’t where you want it to be. The personal relationship that you’re in and that you expected to be so fulfilling…isn’t. Maybe you are struggling to start or build a business, find a career that suits you, or just find happiness in your everyday life. Or maybe all of the above has happened, yet you are still driven to attain that elusive next level of personal or professional success. If you have found yourself in this situation (and trust me, I’ve been guilty of it myself), you may well be (probably unknowingly) part of an overflowing group of “personal development junkies.” Speaking as a recovering member, I know we love the high of those Ah-ha! moments, and that’s what we chase. But nothing ever really changes. No lasting transformation occurs. We just continue on, persistently wanting the same things. I used to devour book after book, believing that with each new morsel of wisdom I absorbed, I became a better version of myself. As if just that knowledge, tucked safely inside my brain, were sufficient. It’s not uncommon to think that engaging in daily personal development is enough in and of itself. But it’s not. If you’re sick of setting goals only to beat yourself up for not achieving them, you are not alone (and you will also get a lot out of this book). You must follow your daily personal development practice with a proven process to set and achieve meaningful goals that will consistently improve the quality of your life. I still remember the day I stopped, looked at my life, and realized I can do more. I can be more. And I’m no longer willing to settle. I had basically coasted through my younger years, putting in the smallest amount of effort necessary to get the greatest return, and I was no longer okay with that. So I began actively moving toward my biggest goals, instead of expecting (more like hoping) that they would come to me if I could just visualize them clearly enough in my mind. Over time, I developed a process that translates the synthesis of all that personal development knowledge into action. I realized that from that action, which is oftentimes simple and quite ordinary, extraordinary results will emerge. If you are a regular in the personal development world, you’ve already heard that anything is possible. And I do believe that. Yet possible isn’t enough to get you out of bed in the morning fueled with the internal motivation to tackle your biggest dreams. I wish it were, but it’s not. Offering a halfwaythere plan wasn’t enough. With my next book—this book—I wanted to create something that would help move your success from possible to probable and eventually to inevitable. The Miracle Equation is that process. As you’ll learn, the Miracle Equation is deceptively simple to explain but only a small percentage of our society understand how to execute it. It consists of only two decisions: The first decision is to maintain Unwavering Faith and the second is to put forth Extraordinary Effort, and the key to creating tangible, measurable miracles is to do both, over an extended period of time. When we study the world’s most prolific achievers, innovators, philanthropists, athletes, and just about anyone else who has made a significant contribution to the world, we see that they have done so by establishing and maintaining Unwavering Faith that they could and then putting forth Extraordinary Effort until they did. When you consistently maintain Unwavering Faith and put forth Extraordinary Effort over an extended period of time, you cannot fail. You may stumble, you may experience setbacks, but your success will ultimately move from possible…to probable…to inevitable. At the point of being able to make reaching your goals inevitable is where you become what I call a Miracle Maven. Miracle Mavens have solved the mystery of creating miracles and live by the Miracle Equation. Unwavering Faith is their de facto mindset. Extraordinary Effort is how they approach all of their goals. Committed to these two decisions, Miracle Mavens create extraordinary results in the world, not just for themselves but for everyone. And because miracles are their way of life, they consistently create extraordinary results over and over again, in nearly everything they do. Embodying the qualities and characteristics of a Miracle Maven is the ultimate goal and where you will land after you read and implement the strategies in this book. THE MOST EFFECTIVE WAY TO READ THIS BOOK I know that some personal development books can be read piecemeal. You can skip around and read the chapters at will and out of order. I know some folks who close their eyes, open their book to a random page, and then read that chapter. Those books give you, the reader, control over what you think will be important to you each time you pick up the book. Those books are great. But this book isn’t like that. The first two chapters, in addition to this introduction, lay the foundation for creating tangible, measurable miracles. We will discuss what miracles are (and are not), then look at an overview of the Miracle Equation and how the two decisions, Unwavering Faith and Extraordinary Effort, feed into each other and make this process easier and easier over time. We’ll then look at the story of my first miracle and how I came to put together this equation just before my twenty-second birthday and how I began teaching it to one person after another, watching (somewhat in awe) as it worked for them, just as it had worked for me. The remainder of this book walks you through the concepts and steps you need to understand before you create miracles on your own. We’ll cover How to overcome the internal conict between your limitations (from which we all suffer) and your innate limitless potential How to develop emotional invincibility so that you remain in control of your emotions no matter what life sends your way (this strategy is really helpful to remember when you think your efforts aren’t producing adequate results) The real purpose of setting a goal How to choose your rst (and subsequent) miracle to create How to keep creating miracles over and over again How to put all of this information into practice with your own Miracle Equation 30-Day Challenge to start you on your path to creating your rst tangible, measurable miracle I would encourage you to read this book all the way through from front to back the first time because the chapters build on one another. You will want to understand the material in each chapter before continuing. After your first read-through, feel free to pick and choose the chapters you would like to revisit at any point. I would especially encourage you to read chapters again if you find yourself stuck in the midst of creating a miracle. A FEW THINGS TO REMEMBER AS YOU READ THIS BOOK 1. The Miracle Morning and the Miracle Equation can work together. If you have not read The Miracle Morning, don’t panic. Reading this book alone will provide you the tools necessary to capitalize on more of your potential and create a more fulfilling life. You will learn how to achieve extraordinary, measurable results (miracles) again and again, and eventually with relative ease. That said, the Miracle Morning does help you gain clarity, calm, and focus before you start your day. It might not be quite as results oriented, but it is a proven daily personal development practice that will help you become the person you need to be to achieve your goals. 2. Several concepts are repeated throughout. The Miracle Equation is simple to explain but a little more complex to execute. So I don’t introduce any concept just once and leave it at that. Instead, I revisit crucial concepts throughout the book on purpose and often in different ways to help you internalize and remember what matters most. It’s much easier to retain information that you have seen several times. 3. My intention with this book is to elevate the consciousness of humanity, one person at a time. As I mentioned at the start of this introduction, my intention with The Miracle Morning was to change one million lives, one morning at a time. Once a million lives were changed for the better, I realized that that once seemingly unrealistic and impossible goal was not only realistic, it was not big enough. With this book, my intention is to elevate the consciousness of humanity, one person at a time. That may sound pretty lofty to you now (you may even have rolled your eyes). But after reading this book, you’ll realize that there is no vision too big. As we each begin to tap into our unlimited potential, our own consciousness is elevated, which influences and elevates the consciousness of those around us. And as we begin creating tangible, measurable miracles, those results also impact everyone who is affected by them. I invite you, as you read, to set your own intention through the understanding that you are limitless and destined to have, be, and create whatever you decide. What gaps do you see in the world around you? What contribution do you believe (or maybe half believe) you can make? What, for you, is the ultimate miracle? I promise, no goal will be out of your reach. Now let’s get started. Our first lesson involves taking the mystery out of miracles. TAKING THE MYSTERY OUT OF MIRACLES Moving from Mythical to Measurable Miracles are not contrary to nature, but only contrary to what we know about nature. —SAINT AUGUSTINE M iracles. They’re kinda mysterious, right? I mean, isn’t that part of the appeal, not knowing exactly how certain seemingly imperceptible events have lined up perfectly to save someone’s life or deliver their wildest dream right to their front door? However, this mysterious nature also creates a problem with the way that we perceive miracles. I once saw a segment on the Today show titled “Skydiving Miracle: Man Falls Two Miles” about skydiving instructor Michael Holmes, who fell 14,000 feet when his parachute failed to open. As the ground below raced toward him, he tried to release the parachute but couldn’t. He tried to cut it free, but that didn’t work, either. In a last-ditch effort to save his own life, he pulled the reserve parachute, but it didn’t release. In the final seven hundred feet that he spent free-falling through the air, he resigned himself to dying. Amazingly, he didn’t die. Relatively speaking, his injuries were fairly minor. And have you heard Donnie Register’s story? It was all over the news as “Donnie’s Miracle,” and Oprah.com even featured it as a “Real-Life Miracle.” Donnie was standing behind the cash register in his own antique store when a gunman fired a shot at his head. Donnie threw his hands up in front of his face. The bullet bounced off Donnie’s gold wedding band, which deflected the shot, and he miraculously dodged what should have been sudden death. Over the years, I’ve heard of miraculous health recoveries, where there seemed to be no other effort made except heavy doses of hope. And even of long-lost sweethearts who mysteriously crossed paths decades after they parted ways. All of these stories are intriguing and awe-inducing at the same time. In all fairness, stories like these can be called miracles. But for many folks (and you may be one of them), it’s miracles like these that give all miracles a bad name. Miracle nonbelievers assume that extraordinary events happen only to other people. They believe that all miracles are elusive. Mythical. Random. Lucky. And out of reach. Totally unrealistic and unpredictable. They just don’t happen in real life—not to them, at least. I used to feel the same way. I mean, if we could simply “think up” a seven-figure check to be waiting for us in our mailbox, wouldn’t everyone be a millionaire? Miraculous health recoveries would be the norm, and that difficult client or coworker—you know, the one who’s constantly spiking your blood pressure—would…well, he or she might just disappear. If you fall into this camp, you probably think that you have to see it to believe it. Being skeptical can be a good thing. You’re doing what we should all be doing; thinking critically, evaluating and questioning everything, going in search of the truth. I approach things the same way and don’t expect anything less from you. However, there is a potentially devastating downside to skepticism that we all need to be aware and cautious of: it can easily turn into cynicism. It can tip us into an unhealthy level of distrust and limit the possibilities that are otherwise available to us. As you’ll learn in this book, there are actually two different types of miracles, and it’s not really fair or beneficial to blend them together. The miracles that we’ve described above are what you might call “passive” or “random” miracles, those that occur by chance. We marvel at their unbelievable nature, but there is no definitive way to explain them, let alone repeat them (and I’m sure that that skydiving instructor and Donnie Register would prefer not to endure their experiences again). They can be seen as random coincidences. If you would like to create these kinds of miracles, which often include a “pray and wait” approach, I’m sorry, but I don’t have much advice for you. They are not the kinds of miracles we will be discussing in this book. This book is about the kind of tangible, measurable miracles that require your active participation in producing them. They are more akin to making your biggest, scariest, and most improbable goals come true. These are the types of miracles that you have a significant degree of control over, meaning that you can consistently create them again and again in your life because you will understand how the process works. But to create this kind of miracle, first you must believe that the result you are seeking is possible and that you can produce it. If you fell into the skeptics’ group above, I would urge you to suspend your disbelief for a moment so that you can explore what else might be possible for you. At least while you read this book. Now, don’t get me wrong; I’m not trying to convince you to believe something unreasonable. What I am trying to do is open your mind to the possibility of something new, a second kind of miracle that you have the power to create at will. In this chapter, we will define what tangible, measurable miracles are, for the purposes of our conversation, and then dive into exactly how these types of miracles unfold so that you, too, can create uncommon results. Then it will be up to you if you want to believe. ANYONE CAN CREATE TANGIBLE, MEASURABLE MIRACLES When it comes to miracles, there are some questions that would be helpful for us to consider, such as Are miracles experienced only by special or “chosen” individuals? Do miracles occur only at random? Are miracles created by God or some other mysterious higher intelligence? Or could it be that we were each born with a limitless potential and capabilities far greater than what we believe about ourselves? What if that’s why some people are wildly successful—because they’ve figured out how to tap into the dormant potential that every single one of us was born with? What if you realized that you’re only a decision (or two) away from tapping into that potential? A realization like this would change the way you approach the size and scope of the goals you’re willing to set and the life you live. It would raise the bar on what it means to be “average,” if average were to become extraordinary. Imagine if you and every person you know began actualizing his or her full potential, if each of us were to discover how to overcome our self-imposed limitations and begin creating everything we want for our lives while making a profound impa...
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