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?


I always enjoyed the beginning of a boxing match when the Master of Ceremonies introduces the fighters. “And in this corner….” It has such a feel of pomp and circumstance. Wouldn’t it be fun to be introduced like that everywhere you go? Imagine walking into work and you hear over the intercom, “Now entering the office…number one in sales…it is Jane!” This example only works if your name is Jane, but I think you can get the idea. This sounds great until you hear the next line, “Weighing in at….” Not many of us would want our weight broadcast to every room we enter.

Today marks the end of a four-week journey of health and fitness that Margie and I were on. It came from a local gym called Peak Physique. The owner was named ‘Trainer of the Year’ in our city. He is also a good friend. It included a meal plan and fitness classes. This will be our second time we took part. The difference between the two experiences was night and day. The first time, we followed everything by the book. We were focused on the result. We wanted to lose some weight and win the challenge. It felt like we were constantly in the kitchen or grocery store shopping for ingredients. In short, it felt like a sacrafice.

Fast forward to four weeks ago. We came into this challenge better prepared and informed. We also brought something more important with us – a better attitude. We gave ourselves a little more freedom with the menu. We stuck to the dishes recommended, but did the ones we learned that we liked from the previous time. Our focus was not on ‘winning a challenge’ or even so much on ‘losing a certain amount of weight, but more so on becoming more healthy. Instead of sacrifice, it felt like an adventure. Were there times it was a challenge to bring our sore bodies to workout? Sure. When that happened, we focused not on winning a challenge, but on how much healthier our bodies were becoming. We were falling in love with the process.

The truth is that we already feel like winners before we even get on the scale. Taking control of your health and what you put in your body can be a challenge, but like we discussed with emotions, if you eat solely for pleasure, you are constantly chasing that ‘high’. Not only will it take more of the food, but sweeter and more decadent food to achiever the same amount of pleasure. Then, the food controls you. In your head you know that it is making you unhealthy, but you are at the mercy of your emotions and your cravings, you become a slave. When you learn to eat to fuel your body, your strength, your health and your immune system, you take back control. You use food and not the other way around.

This is a very difficult struggle for many. It is okay to indulge on occasion. Just make that the exception and not the rule. Once you begin to turn it around, you will be amazed at the positive changes taking place in your life. Tony Robbins once said, “Nothing tastes as good as healthy feels.” Eating that sugar and deep-fried food may sound fun and pleasurable, but at what cost? A body full of inflammation and sickness? Is that worth it? Becoming healthy is a process. You must be patient with yourself and your body. Those cravings will stick with you. After all, they have had their way for years. Everyday you get a little bit stronger. Everyday you get a little healthier. Be proud of yourself for every accomplishment you experience on your journey toward a healthier you. If you want guaranteed success, do what Margie and I did – fall in love with the process.


Here is one of the secrets to an amazing life. This may seem like an obvious conclusion, and for the most part it is. Here is the tricky bit, try remembering it in an emotionally charged situation. Reacting, as easy as it is to do, makes you a slave to outside circumstances. They control your emotional state, they control you. This is true whether that is a rude driver or a flat tire. Mindful acting, as difficult as it can be, puts you back in control.

Would you like to control your life, or would you like others to? Again, that sounds like a foolish question, but one that could serve you when you are tempted to react. Here is another thing that reacting to outside circumstances steals from you, in addition to control, it steals a feeling of security. If your emotional state is determined by things outside of your control, you will never be certain how you will feel. Can you imagine trying to plan anything not knowing what kind of mood you will be in? This can be demonstrated at work the day before you leave for vacation. Nothing seems to bother you. Boss upset? It is alright old chap. Project you were working on fell apart? That is a problem for another day. You walk through life unfazed! What if I told you that you could go through life this way? It is true. Unless you are my boss reading this, in which case I do need to go on more vacations to demonstrate.

Gaining control over your emotional state not only provides you a feeling of security, it also helps add a great deal of inner peace. Knowing that you are not going to let outside circumstances influence your emotional well-being gives us a sense of calm and inner peace that those who react will never have. I have been on both sides, trust me on this one. You decide how you want to feel. Look at outside obstacles for what they are, challenges to test and strengthen your resolve. With each test, you will gain greater control over your emotions and gain a greater sense of inner peace and security. Try it this weekend!


Ben Franklin said many interesting things in his lifetime. I think this might be one of the best. In today’s world, a lot of people are addicted to material bliss. You see packages from Amazon on their doorstep daily. They have to purchase the latest model of cell phone whenever one comes out. When we tie our happiness to the accumulation of material possessions, we cease to own them and they begin to own us.

This is not an anti-material post. I am not advocating selling all of your possessions and donating the money to a worthwhile cause. I like to purchase items here and there as well. The problem comes when we derive our main source of pleasure from accumulating material possessions. Ask yourself, is that me? It is good to purchase nice things for you and your family, but there is something better.

Another great quote! I love the first line, “You’ll never see a U-Haul behind a hearse…” If we spend our lives focused on obtaining material objects to the detriment of everything else, where will that leave us? Think of when you were a kid and had to have that new toy. When you finally got it, you were so excited. It was the best day ever. What happened two months later? It just became another object. You moved on to want the next greatest toy. In essence, your money, or in this case your parents, did not buy a toy, it bought two months of happiness. There is a better way to use your capital than always chasing the latest and greatest new thing, be that electronic gadget, fashion or social status.

To demonstrate what I am saying, let me refer to the pictures above. On top is Margie and I at the Wisconsin State Fair, one of my favorite places. I have purchased many things there. Can’t think of one off the top of my head. I can remember lots of silly times with my love. Then there is a picture of me, my uncle and my sister at a reenactment. Do you know what we bought there? Me neither. Do remember lots of interesting things I learned. Then there is Margie and I at an October Fest. I obviously purchased a large container of beer. Can’t tell you what kind, or even if I liked it. I am more of a rum guy. What I do remember is having fun and discovering new food and drink together. Lastly, there is a picture of Margie and my mother making bracelets. I can’t remember much about the bracelets. I do remember they were made on a soup crawl through the city we live in. It was in the middle of winter and very cold, but we all had fun.

Referring back to the Quote from Denzel Washington, look at the last line. “It’s not how much you have but what you do with what you have.” As you can see by the examples above, spending money to create memories goes a lot further than a material item. In fact, material items can become a burden. You have to find a place for them. You have to clean them. The more things you have, the more you have to put away and clean. When the fateful day comes that you must leave this world, think of what will become of the stuff you leave behind? In short, it becomes someone else’s burden.

Do not sell yourself to pleasure. Find that pleasure in the smile of the one you love. Find that joy in a beautiful sunny day. Feel the refreshing drops of rain. Create beautiful memories to leave with your children instead of the latest gadget.


Taking time to just enjoy the company of good friends is something that friends our soul. After work, stress and negativity fill our week and days, we need time with someone who lifts our spirits.

It is essential to not only have these people in our lives, but to spend time with them and appreciate them. Another great thing we can do is to be this kind of friend for others. Be someone who is a breath of fresh air to everyone they encounter. It is a gift that is priceless. Make time with people like that this weekend.


Every so often, I search myself on Google. This is not some exercise in vanity, or to serve my ego. As an author, I like to make sure that the information and links are correct. Go ahead and Google “Neil Panosian” yourself. You will discover many new and fun ways to connect with this author.

In doing so last night, I learned something that taught me 2 very important things. They came one right after another. I learned that an interview that I had done was picked up by a local Fox News affiliate in New York. That means I was able to reach and hopefully inspire people in a new region. I was keenly unaware this even happened.

That is where the second lesson came to mind. This one was even more important. It made me realize the parallel between this interview and life in general. All too often, we feel we are not having the impact, or doing as much good, as we would like to. Much like this interview, the good we do can often travel farther than we ever realize.

Unfortunately, there is no Google to see how much we have impacted the lives of others. What this story does remind us of, is that we may never know how far our influence may reach. Let’s make sure it is a good one and know that we make more of a difference than we can ever know.



Who out there would like to support local businesses and artists? I would hope the majority of you are raising your hands. Feel free to put them down and read on. One of the toughest parts about supporting local business is that it can tend to be a bit more expensive. With money being tight all over, it can be hard to do. Supporting local business can be easier than you think and does not have to cost a thing. The picture above gives us many examples of simple steps we can take to make a big difference in the life of a small business without affecting our budget at all.

Let’s take a look at a few of them. Writing a review. This is a big one. When people purchase products or services, they generally look at the experience of others. Did they have a good experience? Were they satisfied with the product? Let people know! Many are quick to give negative reviews, but what about supportive and positive reviews? They will make a huge difference. Share their content. For me, this is a big one. We all have our own social circles and can reach people others can’t. Helping spread the world for someone working hard locally can extend that reach much better than they could on their own. Engage with their posts. I cannot tell you how much of a difference maker this can be. It can seem discouraging, especially for artists, to think their work is not only unappreciated, but not even noticed. To take just a few seconds to comment and engage with them can help them understand the message and effect they are having.

My favorite two are give them a shoutout and cheer them on. Recognition for the work they do can make all the difference to a local business. It can help them make it through the challenges often faced by local businesses. For some people, staying up until midnight, or as I have seem Margie do, not sleep at all, can keep them going. This is better for motivation than caffeine or an energy drink.

All of the above examples make a HUGE impact on local businesses, and they cost nothing except our time and a little bit of effort. 64% of all new jobs in the United States are created through small businesses. By helping them, we are not only helping the owners, but everyone they employ and their families. If you are interested in helping this future best-selling author, feel free to share this blog or click the link below to leave a review for, and if you like purchase, any of my books. Support local business. It doesn’t have to cost you anything, but it can be priceless to them.



In the United States, today we recognize Memorial Day. Originally called Decoration Day, from the tradition of decorating graves with flowers and flags. It is a remembrance of those who have died in service to our country. It is sad that after thousands of years on earth, humans have not learned how to avoid war. As I write this, the terrible situation in the Ukraine rages on. Soldiers from both sides are perishing every day. Not because they personally dislike each other, but because of decisions made by their governments. Not only is this true of the soldiers sent to war, but the innocent families torn apart for political gain.

Here in the United States, we have seen our share of casualties. In the civil war alone, 620,000 soldiers lost their lives. That occurred between 1861-1865, when the population of the country was a lot lower. In World War II, an estimated 70-85 million people perished. At the time, the earth’s population was only 2.3 billion. That means roughly 3% of it was killed as a result of war. These numbers may seem to big to fully appreciate. Let us just take one. How does it affect your life when someone you care about passes away? Does it just affect you, or is there a ripple effect? Think of how painful that is. Now, can you imagine multiplying that times 70-80 million? Each person we lose to war is someone’s son, brother, father, mother, daughter or sister. The pain is felt by everyone they know. Each loss could be someone who could have a great impact in the world. It could be someone who could help us cure disease, feed the poor, or even feed our spirit.

No matter what country you are reading this in today, I ask that you take a second to offer thoughts and prayers for not only those we have lost to war, but to the friends and family they have left behind. Pray for the human race that we may better appreciate the value of human life. If we all do this, perhaps we can heal the hearts of nations.


Do you ever find yourself getting discouraged at the state of the world today? I think we all can. With the wars, civil unrest, violence and general discord we see and hear about, it can be a bit difficult to remain positive. Yet, the more negative the world becomes, the easier it is for us to make a difference. Traits like love, kindness, compassion and encouragement become more special the less they appear. Some days, using them at all makes you a super power. Sharing a smile with a stranger is not only unexpected these days, it is shocking to many. A kind and encouraging word to someone working in a busy retail environment? Nothing short of a miracle!

You may be asking yourself how much of a difference you are really making. That is understandable. If we are putting forth effort to make everyone’s day a little brighter and we seem to be outnumbered by those who are determined to complain and bring everyone down, it can seem like we are not making a difference at all. The opposite is true. To illustrate how powerful being kind and loving to the world can be, please allow me to use an analogy. If you think of all the positivity you attempt to bring to the world as light, which is pretty close to accurate, this example will ring true with you. If you are in a bright room, or it is the middle of the day, and you turn on a lamp, how much of an impact does it have? Not much generally. Sometimes, you can’t even tell you turned a light on. Now, imagine being trapped in a cave, unless of course you are Closter phobic, then a dark bedroom would do. What happens if you even turn on a flashlight in that situation? It transforms the entire room! That is how kindness and compassion work in a negative world.

Next time you feel like your kindness is not making a difference, think of this example. When you feel like the world is becoming a very dark place, know that being a light will make an even greater impact. Here is one more thing to consider. How many dark rooms do you encounter? Meaning, how many negative environments do you find yourself in? It could be the gossip at work. It could be the stress of a busy retail location. How about a stressful situation at home? The darker the room, the greater impact your light will have. Kindness, love, compassion and encouragement are not only powerful, they are super powers! Develop yours today!


It is the weekend and we deserve to relax. However, we also deserve to live a life where our dreams are accomplished. One way to make this happen is to realize that what we do is based on what we find important. Perhaps you are thinking that after working all week, you need your rest this weekend. Maybe your weekend is filled with plans with family and friends? Then getting up early could be the answer for reaching your goals. I can hear the responses now. “Get up early?” “On the weekend?” Most people say they are not morning people. If spending an hour a day could help you write that book you have always wanted to do, would you do it? What about starting that new business you dreamed of? If it is important to you, waking up early is not that difficult. If I were to tell you that you could have 5 million dollars if you met me at a coffee shop at 6am, where would you be at 5:59? Why? Because 5 million dollars would change your life.

What works even better is if you do take the weekends off. Schedule your hour first thing in the morning. That way everyone is still sleeping. You can make yourself a nice cup of coffee and focus on your goals. You might think it would not be worth it to wake up a whole hour before you actually have to. Let me give you some numbers. If you work one hour a day on your dreams and goals. If you only do it during the week and take the weekends off, how much time is that? That would be 260 extra hours a year. That is 32 and a half 8 hour days, or over 4 and a half working weeks dedicated to achieving whatever goal you are pursuing. How much further do you think you could get with that extra time?

I usually write for an hour after work as I already wake up at 4am. That still gives me the time we mentioned. In addition to the 55 hours I work at my day job, I have managed to write 2 books in the last year. I have also delivered blogs for the last 330 days straight. All from an hour a day. Try dedicating a focused hour of your day, only 5 days a week to your goals and see what happens. Do this for a month straight and see how much you can accomplish. You will be amazed!


It is Friday. Wouldn’t it be nice to just be able to relax a little after a week of work? That is exactly what this post is not only about, but advising! The quote from Nathaniel Hawthorne above says it best. When you chase happiness, it always remains just beyond your grasp. Do you know why that is? It is because happiness is an inside job! When you chase happiness is some thing, or every someone, there are many times when you will end up disappointed. You are putting the key to your happiness in their pocket. Sometimes, they are too busy to take that key out of there pocket.

When you sit down in a calm and focused manner, happiness, much like the butterfly, will find you. This is shown in pictures of one on my mom’s shoulder and in the hair of my beautiful lady. The key is being calm and focused. What should you be focused on? What you can be happy about in the moment. It is easiest to try this on a good, or even neutral day. Another way of looking at this, is what you could be grateful or thankful for. Try this right now. You could feel joy that you have access to the internet on which to read this. The internet not only allows you to read this inspiring blog, but material on every other subject you choose. Think about this. You have access to more information that even the greatest leaders in the world had only 50 years ago. You can be grateful you have health, to whatever degree you do.

This works great to give ourselves a lift to brighten our day. This works good when things are going well, or even neutral, as we mentioned earlier. It can work even better when we are having a tough day. If you have practice doing this on the good days, which I cannot urge enough to do, then it will make it easier when times are tough. Just had a tough day at work? Be grateful you have a job. Furnace went out at home? You have a place to live. You got a flat tire? Well, you get the idea. Every bad situation could always be worse. Even losing someone we love, which to me is probably the worst situation to have happen, leaves us grateful for having love for that person while they were in our life. Many people live a life devoid of any real connection. It may be clichΓ©, but it is indeed better to have lost in love, than never to have loved at all.

Begin today to make a habit of sitting down and noticing what you can be happy for in your life. It only takes roughly 5 minutes of your time, but can transform your whole day. Not to mention, it puts control of your personal joy and inner peace right where in belongs – with you! I would love to hear what practices you have for developing a feeling of joy and gratitude and what you are thankful and happy for today.