This is a great litmus test to put our words through. How many times a day do we let something escape our lips that we shouldn’t? Having these 3 questions in mind would help prevent that from happening. Remember you cannot unsay something.

How do we keep these questions front and center? Use this picture as your screensaver, pertain jot them down on an index card you carry with you. Then, put it into practice. Try doing this just for a conversation here and there. Eventually, it well become a way of not only speaking, but thinking as well.

So you don’t feel too down on yourself when you first try this, allow me to share my experience. I tried this at work and all I can say is “wow!” I never realized how many useless negative things I say there! Even someone who writes positivity for a living! Although a bit taken aback, I was excited. There is so much room for me to improve my conversation skills.

Try this yourself. I’m about to meet a friend for coffee and am going to try again. I think you will notice different people bring out different conversations. I would love to hear your experience as well!


This is an odd group of items. Do you know what they all have in common? Let me tell you. They are all items my lady had expressed excitement for or about lately.

On the way home from the gym I saw her favorite flavor, butter brickle, was at this little custard stand. Right now we are not eating ice cream, but I knew it would not be back there for at least another month.

The light on our porch was from Halloween. Kind of cool, looks like a flame. That is if you are standing under it looking up. Otherwise, it doesn’t look like Much of anything. Margie mused the other night that it would be cool to put a disco bulb in there. Then our porch could look like a disco and you could see it down the block.

As a gift at Christmas, Margie gave me a lotion called ‘happiness’ which to be honest is what it smells like. She did this because I have seasonal affective disorder. To me winter feels like an 8 month season of depression. She found out, that she likes the scent just as much, if not more, than me.

So today I left work a few minutes early. I drove a different way home and stopped by the mall. I managed to find the store that carried the happiness lotion, they also had a gift box with a bath ball and sanitizer in the same scent! I bought it for her.

Further down the mall I found a store that sells disco bulbs. They were out. The lady informed me all they had left was the display. “That’s fine I’ll take it.” I said, not waiting for her to offer. She wrapped it in lots of paper because they had no box.

Then I drove to the custard stand. Knowing my love wasn’t eating ice cream for a bit, I asked them to pack me a pint to be eaten later. They did.

I took these items and drove – no I floated home! Why? Because I just knew the look of joy I would see on that beautiful face when I got home. I knew this because I did what I tell all couples to do – I listened.

I’ve had people, men and women, ask me, “do I have to?” No, you get to! The reason I put forth the effort is because I have a woman who takes pride in her appearance, and to me is the most beautiful woman in any room she finds herself in. She is an amazing cook and gives a meal you look forward to every evening. Most importantly, like when she bought me the lotion, she loves and she cares.

Was today a special day that she deserved to be showered with gifts? Damn right it was! She makes every day of my life special and she deserves to know that and she deserves to feel as special as she truly is.

Do you know who else does? Your wife… or maybe your husband, or a brother or friend. Maybe a teacher or pastor who inspired you? Only you know who it is. Listen to them. Learn what makes their heart sing and then help them find that song.

I’ll be the first to admit that I haven’t always been good at this. There are so many people that have blessed my life in so many ways I haven’t always let them know. There is a few that it is too late for, but many more that it is not.

Most importantly, there is one who blesses my life each and every day. She doesn’t do it because I love it. She doesn’t do it because she thinks she is supposed to. She does it because that is who she is. That is what makes her so special and what makes her so special to me. She not only needs to know that, she deserves to.

I love you baby.


In a nutshell this is the key to my upcoming book. A lot of people are lost in focusing on improving their relationships, their career, their inner peace and a million other areas of their life. This is all well and good as people should be trying to improve all areas of their life. When you think of all of the areas that could use some work, or that you just want to be operating at the highest level, it can seem overwhelming to say the least.

What many fail to realize, or find hard to believe is that focusing the change on ourselves can accomplish change in all of these areas and more. When we think of focusing on changing and improving ourselves to the benefit of all the areas of our life, a few issues may pop up. One of the things that may come to mind is the thought that why should we change when our spouse/boss/coworkers are the problem? Another issue may be the urgency that we have to change. The funny thing is that my working on ourselves, not only will all these areas be improved, but they will do so quickly and with less stress than if we tried to focus on each area separately.

Here is another aspect to consider. If we are waiting for our boss/spouse/friend/coworker to change, how long might that take? To be honest, it may and probably will not ever happen. Why should they change who they are just to make us happy? If you are anything like myself when I first heard this you may be tempted to reply, “Well Neil, why should I change?” The answer is simple, it will help you. Do you think your boss cares if you go home upset because he belittles you? I am guessing not. Do you think your rude coworker cares that they frustrate you with their actions? No.

How on earth will us changing help us deal with these people as well as improve other areas of our life such as our health, our inner peace? The fact is we can’t change other people, nor should we try. It is not our right or job to decide how everyone should talk or act. What our job is, however, is to decide what their actions mean and will do to us. A great and simple way to do this is by asking ourselves some questions that serve us. I am going to give you two questions that will change your life. Sounds pretty crazy and all of this will be expanded on in my upcoming book, but I want to get this information out there so you can start playing with it and putting it to work in your life right now.

Question # 1: Who do I want to be? This is a question we should ask ourselves everyday, several times a day. I am not just talking about professionally, but physically, mentally and spiritually. How many people do you think have a definition for these areas? I would also recommend taking time at the very least once a week, to write down your answers and take a look at them daily. Seem like a little too much work? Let me ask you this, would you go to the grocery store without a list of what you wanted? Would you just get in your car and start driving without first deciding where you want to go? Of course not. So, why are so many of us living our very life with no direction and then becoming frustrated with the lack of positive results?

Asking yourself this question does one more fabulous thing, it helps guide your actions. Let us say your description of who you would like to be includes a healthy fit person. Now, the way this works is after reading this description we arrive at the job after a stressful commute to find a caring coworker has brought in our favorite doughnut. With the thought of who we wish to become we may very well be less tempted to give in and eat half a dozen. Let us say the coworker is not so nice to us following our stressful commute. If our description includes being a person who does not live in reaction and has a sense of inner peace, we may be less tempted to volunteer to adjust their attitude. We may not always succeed, but knowing what our end goal is will help improve our chances. That also leads us to our other question.

Question #2: How can I use this? This comes in handy with challenges, but can also be used with positive circumstances as well. When we see those mouth-watering pastries after our commute we can use it to remind us that we need to find healthy great tasting snacks. Before you ask, yes they are out there. Have fun researching them. How about the rude coworker? We can use them to practice and build our patience and ability to not live in reaction. Another satisfying aspect is that nothing annoys someone who does their best to bring negativity to people’s lives as someone who doesn’t react to them. Remember, allowing people to get under our skin only negatively affects us, not them. Do yourself a favor and work on yourself for your own good and well-being.


This is Margie and I at a new local restaurant called ‘The Peanut Butter and Jelly Deli’. It is exactly what the name implies, a restaurant that serves mainly peanut butter and jelly sandwiches.

I must confess when I heard the concept I thought it a bit foolhardy. After all, you can go you the store and buy all the ingredients to make several sandwiches for under $10. I couldn’t imagine this being a very astute business model.

As I began to look into what the place had to offer I became intrigued. Lots of different nut butters created fresh in house. A literal multitude of jams, jellys and preserves. Flavors ranging from sweet to savory. Even a peanut butter soup!

Margie and I decided to give this a try. As we walked in we were greeted very warmly. Partly because I discovered my good friend Jodi works there, but mostly because that was the atmosphere they worked hard to foster.

The owner was not only very patient, but helpful. After all it is not everyday decisions like if you have to add bacon to your peanut butter and banana sandwich, or the ethical consequences of combining pineapple jelly with cashew butter and bacon. Which me and Margie did respectfully.

The sandwiches were served in a humble pie tin. The were accented with a slice of bread and apple butter both very tasty as well. The decor was simple and almost rustic. A lot of wood, exposed duct work and lots of room. Even the men’s room was clean and comfortable.

There were other items to compliment your meal. Including cupcakes from another local business, cookies and the aforementioned peanut butter soup. I happened to raise an eyebrow when hearing of this dish. The owner, eager to dispel any trepidation, kindly offered us a sample. It was to die for! Who would have guessed? Not me. My only misgiving was the coffee was French roast, which I don’t think should be allowed to be called coffee.

After leaving and reflecting on our day, it occurred to me what made this all work. They were not trying to do something crazy and unique, but do something simple and do it well.

It reminded me of life. Sometimes those of us striving to be great think that involves a grand plan or something new. True greatness can often be found in doing the simple things great and with great love.


Last post we discussed enjoying the process. That is, whatever goal you are chasing, whatever you are trying to accomplish, whatever outcome you are working towards, remember to focus on the enjoying the journey. Celebrate small victories. Understand challenges and what may seem as temporary failures are really learning opportunities and stepping stones to where you wish to go.

Why is this so important? It is paramount! Up to 90% of our life is spent on the journey from one point to another. If you catch yourself uttering phrases like, “I will be happy when..” Stop right there. By stating that you will only be happy when the goal is achieved, the destination is arrived at, you are postponing your happiness. Who decides when you should be happy? You do! You do this by assigning meaning to daily events. The difference between happy, successful people and those who feel life is hard are whether or not you do so consciously.

We do not get to decide what circumstances arrive daily, but we do get to decide 100% on what it means to us. It is the difference of life happening to you or you happening to life. If you are living in reaction you are giving up control of your emotional well-being to other people, other circumstances, the weather and a million other sources. It is our decisions, not our circumstances that should control our life. Do not wait for the weekend, do not wait for graduation, to not wait until you are married or get that dream job. Decide to be happy starting today, starting right now.

If you wait to be happy in your relationship until you are married, you may never get there. Decide to create as much happiness in your relationship starting today and when wedding bells chime, your heart will be exploding with more joy than you can imagine. Postpone your happiness until that dream job arrives and you may not only be passed over for a more enthusiastic and cheerful candidate, you may even lose the job you are not enjoying now. Decide to find even the smallest things to enjoy and be grateful for in the job you are in now, and you will find yourself receiving praise from those around you and you will find in a short time you will have outgrown your position!

The most important benefit of this decision will be the improvement in the quality of your life. You will have good days and bad days. What is for certain, when you adopt this attitude, you will grow on each and every one of them. You will also find your hardest days will be your greatest blessings. Develop an attitude that says ‘Either I will win, or I will learn’




What you are about to read will change your life. That is not hyperbole, it is not an exaggeration. If you are to really understand what I am about to share with you it will transform the way you view the world. It applies, and can be utilized in every area of your life. Personally, I am just beginning to grasp the power and magnitude of what I am about to share with you. Since coming across this knowledge only a short time ago, it has revolutionized how I write and teach.

There are three levels to every person. You, me, Michael Jordan, Bill Gates, Mother Teresa all have three levels. How we use and become aware of these three levels will affect every area of our lives. Want to be a great parent? There are three levels to that. Want to get healthy? Three levels there too. Want to have a great relationship? Three levels of love. I am going to share with you what these three levels are, how I came across this information and then we are going to scratch the surface of how we can put this to use to transform our lives. I say ‘scratch the surface’ because I could write and entire book on this subject. I also say that because I am only beginning to work with this information and I am continuing to learn and find new and exciting applications for it daily.

Without any more build up, here are the three levels you, me and the rest of the world share.

  • Physical
  • Mental
  • Emotional/Spiritual

This may not sound too profound at first, but stick with me and I think you will become as excited as I am.

First, allow me to share with you how I came to understand this principle. On a Wednesday at my Post Office job I had a very physical day. Sadly, that night I had to work as a DJ as well. Fortunately for me, my lovely lady was kind enough to put together a dinner as I took an hour nap. I slept well the physical nature of the work was exhausting. Thursday work at the Post Office was slightly less physical. I left and went to write and work on my upcoming book. I tried to do some self editing, which I enjoy slightly more than getting a root canal. I also created and worked on some posts for this website. I came home feeling even more tired than the night before. The following day, Friday, I planned to have a nice relaxing day. I arrived at work only to be told my job was looking at being eliminated. Something the Post Office seems to like to do rather often. I was informed by a coworker that not only was this the case, but the boss had also called into question my work ethic. Which, next to my integrity, is one of the most important things to me. You can imagine how frustrated, disappointed, and to be quite honest angry I was feeling. I few hours later the boss returned from lunch and I asked if I could speak with him. Knowing the discussion he had with our coworker he informed me that he expected to talk with me. To make a long story short, he cleared up that both issues were not at all true. My job was safe, for the time being, and he appreciated the job I did. You can imagine the change in emotions then. I went to back feeling relief, gratitude and a sense of pride in my work. I also felt something else – exhausted!!!

While pushing around a pallet jack, I stopped to share what I noticed with a coworker who happened to be standing there. I inquired whether she had noticed you can be tired in three totally different ways, physically, mentally, and emotionally or spiritually. Being that she is what we could safely say as not the most self-aware person, she stared and said, “Umm… I guess so.” Being that I was just kind of thinking out loud, I nodded and moved on.

As I was letting this information bounce around in my head as I worked, one of the benefits of having a job that does not tax me to mentally, a quote suddenly came to mind.

“Every adversity, every failure, every heartbreak, carries with it the seed of an equal or greater benefit.” – Napoleon Hill

Suddenly, the light bulb started to glow. I would say it lit up, but sometimes information takes a moment to develop in my brain. I thought to myself, “If there are three forms of exhaustion, there must be three ways to energize!” This simple thought has began to change my life. Here is what I came up with. Let us say you are having a day where you are sleep walking through everything you do. You could stop at your local Starbucks and grab a double espresso, the caffeine would give you a little boost. If you are anything like me, there are days where I swear my body laughs at my feeble attempts to bring it to life. Perhaps that same day you come across an article on a subject that really interests you, or you have a conversation with a friend about a project you are working on. Now you are mentally stimulated. The body will more than likely come along for the ride. Here is where things get interesting to me. If, on this day of working with an energy deficit, you come home to find your spouse has surprised you with tokens of affection you totally did not expect. Maybe a friend calls you to tell you how much they appreciate you. Suddenly, your soul is on fire! Nothing can top that. Sleep? Who needs it.

This applies to more than energy. Trying to lose weight? If you just try to eat better foods (Physical) your chances of success are slim to none. If you study the effects of being overweight (mental) such as less years in your life, complications that can arise as you age, your motivation will be better. If you really want to improve your odds of success, you may want to look at your children or grandchildren and realize you might not see what they will become in life. Maybe you will think about how much you will miss doing with them while you are here because you will not be able to keep up with them physically. This will cause a powerful emotional response. Your motivation then becomes part of your spirit. When that happens, you will change your thinking (mental) and change your actions (physical)

This works for healing too. Let us say you were in a car accident. Your cuts, scraps and bruises will heal. It may take a while for you to remember that your odds on being in another accident are rather slim. Still, in a traffic jam it may take you a while not to have your heart race and your nerves be on edge.

There are so many more areas of life and examples we could touch on, but I wanted to introduce you to this principle and allow you to begin to work with it in your own life. I would be elated to hear what areas you can think of where you could use the knowledge of the three levels and how you can put what we are learning into practice.


A few posts ago I wrote how asking the question, “What do I love about this situation?” can change your perspective. I used the example of my ride to work and the things that I saw to illustrate. If you haven’t read that post there will be a link at the bottom of this one for you to do so.

Since I have written that post another startling revelation has occurred to me – I have 4 more senses! As deep of a thinker as I may be, I am not always the quickest. What I mean is I began I seeing things that I loved and seemed to overlook. Eventually I noticed sounds I loved. Things that came to mind were birds singing, my love laughing and the sound of coffee brewing. I noticed smells I enjoy and take for granted such as pizza baking in the oven, Margie’s perfume or…well…coffee brewing. I also noticed things I enjoyed the feel of. These included, but were not limited to, a soft bed after a hard day, the feel of the woman I love in my arms, and a warm cup of coffee. Perhaps you are seeing a pattern, I really love Margie and coffee.

There is one of the senses that made a huge difference and changed an entire portion of my life. Paying attention to what you love using this one sense can change your life so much for the better, even with no change in outside circumstances. You don’t believe me? Allow me to share my example with you.

Taste, that was really a big one. I am so lucky to live with one amazing cook. Everything she makes is amazing. Before starting this, I never realized how much of this wonderful food experience I was missing. Closing my eyes and really concentrating on each bite and the flavor I was experiencing sent my enjoyment into a much higher level. Try this yourself next time you are enjoying lunch with coworkers, a quick snack or of course a dinner made for you by the love of your life. Asking yourself ahead of time, “What can I love about this meal?” has so many benefits. You engage all your senses. The sound of bacon sizzling in the ban. The texture of the pasta on your fork. The smell of the chocolate chip cookies baking in the oven. The bright colors in the salad on your plate. To, of course, the taste we slow down to appreciate. You can also think about what you can be grateful for, which is another way of looking at love. You can be grateful you can afford the ingredients to create the meal. You can be grateful you have a house in which to prepare the meal. If you are as blessed as I am, you can be grateful for a woman whose culinary talents are only rivaled by her beauty.

Practice these things as often as would be enjoyable for you. I can promise you that once you start this practice, you will not want to stop as it makes every experience your own little slice of heaven. This one practice, without any change in outside circumstances, can give you a life you love. I would love to hear about your results if I see you at a seminar, on my website or even if we happen to just bump into each other. Feel free to share them in the comments below as well.