This is an important and much needed reminder. There are so many of us that work so hard to make the world a better place and bring joy to others. Those same people are often the hardest on themselves. Check your inner conversation. Is it motivating? Recently, I noticed that my inner conversation started to lean a little more to the negative than I would care for. I mentioned to Margie, “I need to work on being more positive.” She gave me a look that showed her shock with my statement. I should have been a little more specific. My outer conversation was still very positive. However, my inner conversation was not. Allow me to give you an example. Winter is always difficult for me. The cold, the lack of life, it all has me feeling down. I decided to add a way to help with this. I decided to appreciate the effort and beauty behind the decorations people put up for the holidays.

On the outside I did pretty good. Whether I was with others, or by myself. I would remark, “Wow! That one looks nice.” or “That must have taken a long time.” I did feel better. That was until my inner voice started talking. I am not sure who that person is, but he didn’t have many nice things to say. I heard the voice in my head say, “That one is sloppy.” and “Why did they even bother to put up decorations if they were not going to take their time?” Here I was trying to find beauty and the holiday spirit and my inner dialogue turned into a holiday decoration critic. Then, I started getting down on myself for being negative.

We must remember that we are human. We must be forgiving and compassionate with ourselves. Especially during this busy season. As a solution to combat my newly negative self-talk, I have begun to listen to positive affirmations on the way to work in the morning. It places positive thoughts in my head before my head can come up with negative ones. Remember to be kind to ourselves the rest of the week. In what ways are you kind to yourself?


At first glance, this statement may sound counter-intuitive. It really isn’t. Let me first start by telling you that wealth is not monetary. We have seen countless celebrities take their own lives with more money than many of us could spend in a lifetime. They were not wealthy. Being truly wealthy consists of having loving relationships. This can be with that special someone, your children, your parents or even your dog! How do you get that? By giving. Giving the gift our time. Maybe it involves giving the gift of our undivided attention. The wisdom of our experience makes a good gift. In the last case, our dog, a gift of a long walk and tossing a ball around would bring happiness and a loving relationship with your dog.

How about being wealthy by having a career we love? We must give for that. Give the time to study what makes our heart sing. Give the time and effort into developing our skills. The more we put into it, or we could say give to it, the higher our return will be.

One of the best ways to be wealthy is to have inner peace and joy. I can think of no better way to get both of these than to do it through giving. When you give someone a smile, doesn’t it make you feel good inside too? When you have listened and gave someone some encouraging words, how does that make you feel? What about when you give to an organization you love? That will bring you joy and inner peace, knowing you made a difference.

Let us remember the words of Anne Frank. We will never become poor by giving. I can promise you the more you focus on giving to others, the richer your life becomes. One important caveat to that – do not forget to give to yourself. In a season where many people are focused on what they can give to others, do not forget to give yourself some gifts. The gift of time with yourself. The gift of compassion and forgiveness. In what ways to you plan to give to others? How about giving to yourself?


Here is an interesting fact about the blog you are now reading. It is followed in about 200 countries. This always excites me. The thought that I can bring joy, motivation and inspiration to someone in a country that I may have never even heard of is a gift that I never tire of. When a new country is added to this extensive list, as is the case with South Sudan in the list above, it gives me great pleasure. It also allows me to research and learn about the country and its people so that I may better serve them with my words and ideas. There are a few countries that I have yet to reach. Greenland and some countries in west Africa such as Mauritania, Western Sahara and Niger. This keeps me motivated. Not only is there more people I can inspire and share ideas with in the world, but even in my own country of the United States, in my own state of Wisconsin and my own city of West Allis.

In this photo, everything in pink and red are countries in which we have viewers of this blog. As you can see, we are close to reaching everyone. This can only be achieved with your help. If you would like to see a more positive and inspired world, here is what you can do to help. Share this blog. Tell all of your friends, family and other people you think could benefit from what we share here. Tell them about secret2anamazinglife.com. Share the blog on all of your social media posts. Mostly, no matter what city, state, province or country you find yourself in, please engage and become a part of this blog. Comment your ideas. Share encouragement. It would be great to hear from everyone around the world. Whether that is Fiji, UAE or right down the street. The more opinions we have, the more people we reach, we can all do our part to change and transform the world into a more positive and loving place for all of us to enjoy.

For my valued friends who regularly comment, like and share this blog. I want to personally thank you from the bottom of my heart. The research, pondering and writing of these posts are done with the intent to make the world a happier and healthier world one soul at a time. I would love to meet all of you and learn where you are from and what you enjoy about what we share here. Let us make 2023 the best year yet!


Is this not the million dollar question? How to have a great Monday? Most of us would settle for a Monday that does not suck. Why does Monday suck for most people? Well, for one, we have to return to work. We get less time with our families and friends. There is the morning and evening commute. It could be the fact that there are four more days just like this ahead. How can we possibly enjoy such a day? It is easier than you might think and I am going to show you how to do it right here. Whether you are reading this on a Monday or some other day, you can use what I am about to show you to transform your day to a more positive one. You can do this as soon as you finish reading this post.

All the facts about Monday we looked at in the first paragraph are true, but let me ask you this, what if you didn’t know it was Monday? Somehow someone stole your calendar, your date off your cell phone and every other indication as to what date is was? Would Monday suck as much? Before you think I am advocating to pretend that is not Monday as a solution, just stick with me. The point is by saying and focusing on the fact that it is “the worst day of the week” it only amplifies the feelings of stress and overwhelm we are feeling. The key word to turn that all around is found in that last sentence, can you guess which one it is?

That key word is focus, or it may be better stated, perspective. Let us take another look at our Monday obstacles. Be brave, this won’t hurt a bit. We have to return to work. This may not be our favorite place in the world, but there is a way to appreciate that more. Lose your job! If you really do not like where you work and you have not left it, there must be a reason. Does your job allow you to keep the lights on? Does it allow you to purchase gifts for those you love this holiday season? Perhaps you are saving up for a new car or a vacation (both in my case). Try to really picture what life would be like if you were unemployed. The stress of not being able to afford not only the finer things in life, but the basics. You know, food, shelter and clothing. Picture yourself going up to a homeless person and telling them how much you dislike Mondays and going into work. Feel a bit foolish? Focus on what your job gives you and the pain you would have if you did not have it.

Let us go through a few of the other items quickly. Less time with family and friends. Let me tell you to leave a warm bed with a hot lady in the middle of a cold Wisconsin winter at 4:30 in the morning is NOT the easiest thing to do. What it does do, however, is give me a chance to miss and appreciate my love. When you step back or are removed from a situation you love, you long to get back there. You realize everything you love about it. When you return, you appreciate those things even more. If you are missing your friends and family, ask yourself why. What is it you are missing about them? Then, feel grateful you have those things and make the most of the next chance to enjoy them. I not only do this with my tropical vacations, but I do it daily with the woman I love. It not only reminds me of what an amazing woman I have, but keeps our relationship loving and helps us never take each other for granted.

How about those awful commutes? They are an opportunity most of us never take advantage of. What do I mean by that? Try listening to an intriguing audiobook during your drive. How about this practice I wrote about in a previous post; try looking for things that make you happy? Things that you like? Here is a powerful one. As you drive, and keep your eyes on the road, look for things you are grateful for. Things such as that red light you are stuck at. Yes, the one that keeps you from being hit by drivers coming the other way. How about some of those planters in the islands we drive by without ever noticing them? Can’t see them due to snow? How about the fact that someone clears the roads so it is easier and safer for us to drive? How about the fact we have a vehicle or public transportation to use. Sure beats having to walk or hitch up a horse.

Four more days just like this? That is four days to listen to a great audiobook or motivational speech. Four days to think of the amazing reasons you miss your family and friends. Four days to find interesting things you are grateful for, or that make you happy, that you may have never noticed before. Sure, staying in that warm bed with my hot lady would be better than going out in weather animals hibernate from, but at least I am able to. This time last year I was preparing to have my heart operated on and wasn’t sure I would be here today. The fact that we get a Monday at all is a gift. Let us not overlook that fact. Does Monday really suck or is it our perspective that sucks? That could be the million dollar question.


At this time of year, many of us can find ourselves running around and trying our best to find the perfect gift. Maybe as parents, or even as a spouse, we are trying to figure out how to save enough for the perfect gift. We work overtime. We cut back as much as we can on our expenses. Quite often we are also worried about planning the perfect get together. Stressed about cooking and shopping for that. Couple this with there often being an extreme of weather this time of year. (Hot in the southern hemisphere and cold in the north) and there is so much stress it can leave us, as the picture said, broke, overwhelmed and tired.

This year, let us do it differently. Instead of stressing if the house looks perfect and dinner is done just right, to everyone’s liking, let us just enjoy the company. Instead of saving for the perfect gift, let us focus on the perfect heart-felt gift. Instead of running ourselves ragged, let us plan a day with friends practicing some self-care. That can be a weekend retreat, a group meditation, a paint and sip or just getting together for coffee or a movie. When it comes down to it, do we really remember the toy we got when we were 6? It is far more likely, and more valuable, to give the gifts of memories. If the pandemic taught us anything, it was the gift and value of human companionship. Not only having some, but having quality time together. That is also a skill that is developed.

Looking back at this post, I noticed the words ‘gift’ and ‘value’ several times. It is important to remember what is truly valuable and that is what makes a great gift. Another quick reminder….do not forget to give a gift to one of the most important people in your life…YOU. That is the gift of a stress-free or low stress holiday season.


I am currently reading a book by Pam Grout. In it, she says, “If the thoughts in my head were on a loudspeaker, I would have been committed a long time ago.” This is a statement that holds true for most of us I would think. Can you imagine if everything you thought was broadcast for the world to hear? I also saw an interview between Larry King and a Swami. In it, Larry asks him how it is so quiet in his head. The Swami tells Mr. King that is the natural state of the mind and the rest is just our thoughts about the world. If you think about it, our mind provides a color commentary about the world around us. You can stare at the cars at an intersection and think to yourself, “What a lot of pollution is being put into the atmosphere!” You could also note what a great color that SUV is. Both are true, but would give you a different experience at the intersection.

This is not only true at a red light, it is true every second of every day. Whether you are making observations about the people you work with or the value of the coffee you just purchased from the local coffee shop. Your mind is going every moment you are awake. It reminded me of what you see when watching a sporting event. You have that ‘play by play’ person who gives you a running monologue of what is transpiring between the two teams. This is like the thoughts in your mind. Then you have the ‘color commentator’ who delves a little deeper into certain aspects of what is transpiring. That is like our conscious mind, picking up on whatever thought that mind is spewing. Most of us need to fire the ‘play by play’ person in our head and find a new one. One that describes the world in a more positive light.

Here is something to think about. Think of your best friend. Chances are they have some differences from you. Can you imagine how different your perception of the world would be if you closed your eyes and just experienced the world through the play by play in the head of your best friend? Would their observations be exactly the same as yours? I think we can all agree the answer would be ‘no’. Even if we experience the same situations. This is really how our thoughts create our world. It can be hard to grasp the esoteric aspect of the Law of Attraction, when they say your thoughts create your reality. It is far easier to grasp this concept. Let us go back to our example at the intersection. If our play by play of the world around us was telling us about the pollution and how every second those cars were idling, this amount of poisonous gas was being released into the planet, that could be a rather depressing experience. If our thoughts were that way on a consistent basis, the world may seem a dark and bitter place.

This quote from Albert Einstein (a pretty bright fellow at that) was given when someone asked him what the most important question we can ask is. This quote brings to mind the opposite side of the color commentary question. Back to our friend at the intersection. This time he is noticing what beautiful color some of the cars in line are. Perhaps he notices some of the nice landscaping around the buildings are. Before long, he is feeling pretty good. Same situation, entirely different experience. This is not to say that our friend who appreciates a good paint job or a nicely planted bush does not realize that cars emit exhaust, it is just that is not what he chooses to focus on. He has decided we live in a friendly universe as Mr. Einstein would say. In this way, our thoughts go a long way to create our reality.

Today, spend some time listening to the running commentary in your head. How much of it is positive and how much is negative? While deciding to appreciate holiday decorations more this year, I endeavored to do so as I drove along. While pointing our fun looking penguins and reindeer to Margie, a little voice in the back of my head said, “Yes, but some of them look so sloppy.” Here I was trying to focus on something more positive, and that voice in my head was refusing to let go of the negative. Have a meeting with your color commentator in your head. If they are not willing to be more positive, fire them!


Have you ever been frustrated because the point you are trying to communicate is misinterpreted? Have you ever felt as though your partner was not showing you any affection? Has your partner ever accused you of the same thing? Do you ever feel like you and your partner are just not on the same page? It might be as simple as the language you are speaking! I am not talking about the difference between French and Zulu. No, this is a far more subtle, but just as different dialect.

We discussed this difference in language on the latest episode of the Living the Dream with Neil Panosian podcast. If you would like to increase the quality of the communication between you and that special someone in your life, take a listen. If you want every conversation to feel more effective and effortless, take a listen. If you want to know just what to say or do to make your partner feel loved, take a listen. If you want to feel more love in your relationship and help your partner feel more as well, take a listen. While you do listen, feel free to subscribe. That way you will get these amazing tools and strategies right away and be able to improve the quality of your relationships, and your life, as soon as you are done listening to the episode. It is as simple as clicking on the link below, sitting back, relaxing and listening.



How do you create the relationship of your dreams? How do you know what exactly will make your partner happy? How can you avoid what will make your partner unhappy? Wouldn’t it be great to know what things you could do, say and gifts you could give that would mean the most to the one you love? How about knowing all of these things about any of your relationships? What if it was not only possible, but could be accomplished by using 2 simple steps? Sound too good to be true? It is not and it is easier than you think!

We recently revealed these 2 simple steps on an episode of the Living the Dream with Neil Panosian podcast. If you would like to reduce the stress and increase the joy in all of your relationships, especially the one with the special someone, you should listen. If you would love to know the perfect present to get and take the stress out of gift giving, you should take a listen. If you would like to deepen the quality and closeness of all of your relationships, especially the one with your partner, you should listen. It is as simple as clicking the link below and taking a listen. By the end of the episode, you will know the 2 simple steps you can take right now to accomplish all of that and more. Feel free to subscribe and you will be the first to learn these and other secrets to an amazing life!



It can be hard to decide what actions to take and how to take them to improve different areas of your life. It may benefit you to meal prep and eat healthy meals for your physical well-being. Those same actions may not be the best ideas if you are trying to create a romantic date with you and your partner. Going to the gym is a great to reduce stress, but takes time away from your kids. Unless, of course, you get them to go to the gym with you. It would be so wonderful if there were a universal character trait that we could incorporate and develop in our lives that would benefit everything. Great news, there is!

Even better news is that it is only 3 words you need to start using in your life. Still too much? Ok, it is actually 2 words, because the last 2 are a hyphenated word, thus they are actually one word. Bad news for some of you, those words are consistent self-discipline. Here is why it needs to be those words. If you are self-disciplined ‘once in a while’, which really is not being disciplined at all, you will not see much of a difference in your life, if any at all. If you are careful with your diet one day, and the next get the most for your money at the all-you-can-eat buffet, your waistline will not shrink. If you workout every Monday, but sit around on your butt the other 6 days, a healthy physique will not be in your future. The picture above shows us the great reason to be self-disciplined. If we are, we control ourselves. If we only eat healthy if they are sold out of Bavarian cream doughnuts at the grocery store, they control us. side note: I found the secret here is to skip that section all together at first. If we only manage to control our road rage when the driver ahead of us actually does the speed limit, then they control us. Being self-disciplined means we control ourselves. Isn’t that how life should be?

Here is another reason to be consistently self-disciplined – it speaks to your integrity. (another great word to work on) If you only give your partner flowers when you make them mad, you are someone looking to make up for their mistakes. Not exactly a bad thing, but still reacting to the moment. If you are someone who is consistently taking action that will improve your relationship. You bring flowers home for no other reason than to put a smile on your partner’s face. You genuinely compliment them when you notice something wonderful about them. You help without being asked. Then you are someone who is in control of their role in the relationship. It speaks to your character as a good life partner. If you only avoid those doughnuts one day a week, you are someone struggling to be healthy. If the doughnuts are the exception and not the rule, you are a healthy person.

Here is the best reason to be consistent in your self-discipline – it allows you to accomplish things. If you want to be a success at ANYTHING, you need to be self-disciplined, and you need to be so consistently. If you want to be healthy, if you want to be wealthy, if you want to have an amazing life or relationship, if you want to be a great writer or cake designer, you need to be consistent in your self-discipline. You need to take the actions on a daily basis that allow you to become the person who will accomplish the goals you are chasing. This formula does not allow doing things only when you feel like it, or when it is easy. Everyone likes to go to the gym when it is convenient, but what about when it is freezing outside? How about when it is raining? Snowing? You must be consistent in your discipline and your dedication.

How do you become self-disciplined? I will give you 3 quick ways and encourage you to research more on your own. First, take a look at the picture to start this post. There are a lot of great ideas. Second, pick up so good books on the subject and practice what they say. One of my favorites is Discipline Equals Freedom by Jocko Willink. Third, and most important, develop your why. If you have a strong enough purpose, it will keep you going when the feeling to do so is absent. I would love to hear your tips for staying disciplined in the comments below. We could all use a little extra help in this area.


What is the secret to an amazing life? We have a whole website dedicated to that very question right here. Recently, we sat down on the Living the Dream with Neil Panosian podcast to discuss 2 of the very best. Learn what these powerful secrets are and how to put them to work in your own life as soon as you finish listening to the episode. Just click the link below to be taken to the podcast!

While you are there, please do me the honor of subscribing. You will then be the first to receive the latest tools and strategies to live and amazing life. Each episode is less than 10 minutes and provides a fun and informative listen. Please join our wonderful community at Living the Dream with Neil Panosian podcast. We would love to have you join our family.