Here we are again, talking about daily habits. Why is this such a hot topic lately? It is because, as John Maxwell puts it, “The secret of your success is found in your daily routine.” We have been discussing habits, routines and daily actions a lot here lately. We have seen how a seemingly insignificant action (20 squats) done over the course of enough time (200 days) can have a huge impact. Think of turning on your facet to just barely drip. Then place a glass underneath it. By the time you wake up, you will have a nice glass of water ready to drink.

We have been using this method to accomplish things such as keeping up with a healthy fitness habit. It can be used for things far greater. Let us look at your relationships. This could be coworkers, friends, family or your intimate partner. One of the ideas we gave for sticking with your habit was to set an alarm on your phone to remind you. What if you set an alarm for 5 minutes after you left work to remind you to give your spouse a sincere compliment? What if you set it for 5 minutes before work to remind yourself to show your coworkers signs of appreciation? It may not make a difference in the short-term, but hearing a sincere compliment or appreciation will strengthen and grow that relationship. Trust me, I use this myself. I no longer need to set an alarm, as it has just become part of a daily practice. Still, it doesn’t hurt to have a reminder.

Even if your compliments fall flat. Even if your signs of appreciation may seem…well…unappreciated, the effort will not. Your daily sincere compliments or signs of appreciation, or squats for that matter, are showing that you are trying to bring a better version of you to the table. That will always make you more attractive. Not to mention those squats will do wonders for your backside! Daily habits are the key to success in any endeavor. Think of what daily habits you can use to set yourself up for success!


A few posts back, we spoke about making changes in your life. How easy it is to do a small change for a consistent period of time. In doing so, you create a major change. One of the examples we used was doing 20 squats a day. In one day, you probably would not notice a difference. In a week, you sill might not notice much, other than a soreness from using muscles that you haven’t used in a while. However, done over 200 days, which was the example we used, there would be a major difference.

Recently, someone mentioned they had forgot to stick with their squats already. This is understandable. Life is crazy for us these days. It seems we have 25 hours worth of stuff to do in 24 hours. Somewhere we also have to fit in sleeping. It is also easily correctable. There are a few things you can do that will make sticking to a routine easier than ever. The first one you might be holding in your hand right now. In fact, you could be using it to read this very post. Your cell phone. We seem to have them with us at all times. They may get in the way of healthy in person relationships, or compromise some people’s driving, but we can put them to work for us. Using the example of the squats, let us see how this is done. First, pick a time you can count on fairly regularly. Then set an alarm for that time. Most cell phones will make it a daily alarm. When the alarm goes off, you are reminded to do your squats.

Here is another great idea. Put your friends to work for you. Don’t worry, you won’t have to pay them anything. In fact, it works even better to put your critics to work for you as well. I am talking about putting yourself out there. Let everyone know what you plan to do. Tell friends and coworkers. One great way is to put it out on social media. This is kind of like throwing yourself under the bus. You are letting everyone know what you plan to do and they will be watching. Your friends to see how you are doing. Your critics to prove that you won’t stick with it. Both are good motivation.

The last idea for making it easier to stick with your goals, I do every single day. That is prepare the night before. If we wait until the action must be completed, many things can keep us from taking the actions we need. We could be pressed for time. We could not have our workout clothes clean and ready. A million valid excuses can come up. The way to beat them, and set ourselves up for success, is to prepare ahead of time. My goal was to eat oatmeal for lunch during the week. I like it with a little cinnamon and nutmeg. Occasionally, I toss some dried fruit in as well. I also get up for work at 4am. If I waited until then to pack my lunch and get my coffee together, my counter might look like the picture above. I also would probably forget the oatmeal and just stop for some unhealthy food by my work. So, I get the coffee machine all ready the night before. I get my oatmeal with the cinnamon and nutmeg ready. Even a little bag of dried fruit. Then, in the morning I just grab and go!

Sticking with goals, even small ones, can be difficult. I hope taking these steps will help you with your commitment. I know they work for me, I hope they will work for you. If you have any tricks that help you stick with your goals, please share them with us so we can all benefit.


To the more cynical of you, this notion of expecting something wonderful to happen may sound ridiculous. I can hear your voices as I type this, “Even if I do, life will still be the same.” or “Life won’t change just because I am expecting it to.” I would have to agree with both of those statements. Life happens. Flat tires happen. Turning off your alarm while you are still half asleep happens. Going to Starbucks and finding they are out of coffee happens. (this actually happened to me and I share the story in my first book) If life will not change when we alter our expectations, then why do it? That is a very fair and legitimate question. Life will not change – but our experience of life will.

When we choose to expect, and therefore focus on, the positive, that is what we see. When you are expecting something wonderful to happen, you will be better able to notice when it does. Here is the truth – almost everything that happens in our lives can be something good. We get a flat tire? We might be late, but it will give us a forced opportunity to slow down. It will give us a chance to practice our tire changing skills. Maybe it will provide us a chance to use that roadside assistance we pay for. A cavity, as painful and inconvenient as it can be, is a great reminder to take care of our teeth.

Life is not all about finding the good in the struggles. In fact, life if full of miracles! Most of them we never notice. The fact that we can use a device that fits in our pocket to serve as an alarm clock to wake us up, a source of news to keep us informed, a music player to lift our spirits, a GPS system to get us where we are going, a camera to take pictures of where we are going and a platform to tell people around the world where we have been is a miracle. How about the wind? We can use it to power our cities. It can tell us when our neighbors are grilling out. It can further our appreciation of a beautiful flower. How about our ability to communicate and encourage others, even if they are half a world away? I always enjoy my communication with my friend in Italy. He provides valuable feedback on these very posts.

The fact that our bodies can turn food, water and air into energy, thoughts and motion. It is not only a chemical process, it is nothing short of a miracle. The happy dog we see in the car next to us. The smile from a stranger, or even better yet, from someone we love. The ability to taste the food we love. The joy that comes from hearing our favorite song. The feeling of love we get when someone hugs us. You may say I am choosing to look at the world through rose-colored glasses. You may be right, but does that make any of those statements less true? How would looking at all of those things as the miracles they truly are make you feel? What if you spent an afternoon, or even an entire day, trying to spot and appreciate everything good in your life? How would you feel at the end of the day?

The cynical are right that none of this would change the world. Here is the powerful secret to an amazing life – it would change the world for you! By taking control of our focus, we have the ability to create our world. Every day something wonderful does happen to us. What happens on the days we miss it? Will there be days when we feel nothing wonderful happened? Yes, we will still have bad days. We are human. When we chose to focus on, and expect, the wonderful, those bad days will be the exception and not the rule. In my third book, I ended it with a quote from Einstein. I think it sums up what we have been discussing here today. I invite you to read and ponder it. I also invite you to take me up on that challenge of trying to find everything positive you can for an afternoon, or even an entire day.

GET STARTED… KEEP GOING!πŸƒβ€β™‚οΈπŸƒβ€β™€οΈ

Coming up on the first full weekend of the new year. How are those resolutions going? Hopefully you made it a full 2 weeks. One of the reasons resolutions, or goals, fail is that we rely too much on motivation. Once motivation starts to fade, we are often unable to stay committed to our end result.

A great way to make sure that we stay on the path to our goals is to set up habits that serve us. Think of your goal for the new year. Is there a small habit you could set up to keep you moving in the right direction? Simple examples are swapping your coffee for green tea if you want to cut down on caffeine. Parking future away at stores if your goal is to increase your steps. Pick a time to tell your spouse one thing you are grateful for if your goal is to increase the appreciation in your relationship.

What is your goal? Is there a simple habit you can start before the motivation begins to fade? Let’s make the new year a success!


The picture above serves 2 purposes. First, it makes Margie and my cat-loving friends happy that I featured a cat in a blog post. (I am a dog person) Second, and more to the point of this post, it represents the kind of delusions that we are referring to today. People at my day job are always amazed that I am able to maintain a positive attitude in such a negative atmosphere. My response? “There is no law of physics or biology that states your mind and body have to be in the same place at the same time. I might look like I am here, but mentally, I am on a beach drinking out of a coconut!”

Above is me actually in the tropics enjoying a great book. The benefit to this way of thinking is that it reduces the stress that we may feel in any situation. There are 2 more interesting and important benefits that being slightly delusional can bring us. First, is acting as if the situation is already as you desire it to be, will help it manifest that much quicker. Let us suppose, if you will, that you want to be a best-selling author. If you conduct yourself as a best-selling author would, you would take interest in things that such a person would have interest in. You may find yourself speaking to publishers and literary agents. You will sign up to be part of author festivals. You will network yourself out to people a best-selling author would want to connect with. By taking these actions you will put yourself in position to succeed at your dreams and ambitions. This will make the percentage that they are likely to occur improve significantly. Once that happens, the second benefit will kick in.

Acting as if the situation has already reached our desired outcome helps us do one more thing – be prepared for it. What do I mean? Did you know that roughly 33 to 70% of people who win the lottery end up broke? This sounds crazy. Most of us think if I had a couple of million dollars, I could make it last a while. The truth is that if you are poor and you win a lot of money, you still often handle it like someone who is poor. You were not prepared to be wealthy.

Let us say you want to be famous. Maybe as an individual, or like in the picture above, part of a famous power couple. If you act and think like a power couple would before you become famous, then you stand a better chance of success. Knowing famous couples always have people trying to tear them apart. They look for anything that could be misconstrued as infidelity. Therefore, you make a conscious effort to make sure everyone knows that you are faithful to one another. Famous couples are often accused of being rude or mistreating others. It would serve us well to develop the habit of treating everyone with dignity and respect. That way when you are at the county fair being respectful to one of the vendors and they say, “I recognize you two from the internet! You are the cake designer and the guy who writes all of the motivational stuff.” You still smile even though they only got your lovely lady’s title exact. Margie and I even went on vacation 4 years ago (has it really been that long?) and no less than five people knew us in a foreign country! That has only continued to grow as her amazing creations are shared on internationally online and my influence continues to grow across the globe.

Look at this famous power couple πŸ’‘

Be a little delusional. Use it to your advantage. Practice what being a success would look like to you. It will reduce the stress you feel in life, help it manifest quicker and have you prepared when success does come. Delusions can be a little work. In the case of Margie and me, we work to make sure our love is strong and discuss what we would do if someone disrespects our relationship. That way as we continue to grow in service to others, we will be less likely to fall victim to any of the trappings that may bring. Ask yourself, “What delusion can I start living that will help me the most?”


I am currently working on my fourth book, From Ruining Livers to Saving Souls, and learning a lot about both myself and life in general. As faithful readers of this blog, I am going to give you a bit of a preview. When I was growing up, I wanted to be a rock star. Really, who didn’t? My personification of what a cool leading man was Michael Hutchence from the band INXS. He seemed to have this sensual and yet mysterious aura about him. I managed to be in a few bands and have quite a bit of fun as you will be able to read in the upcoming book. Still, never quite a rock star.

Next up was being a bartender. The ringleader of the nightly circus. The star of the show. This I did for 23 years. I was pretty good, if I allow myself to say so. I flipped bottles. I learned the art of conversation to an insane degree. I mixed drinks. I was charming and friendly. I never realized the skill that made me a great bartender. It was the same skill that allowed me to excel working with the public during the day at the post office. I recall being on vacation in a different country and someone walking up to me saying, “You are the funny guy from the post office.” Crazy, but true.

During this time, I was also helping out at a meal program feeding under privileged individuals. I approached that with the same rock star/bartender personality that I had from my youth. I recall people switching lines to come to me at the meal program. They remembered something I had said to them the month prior. One gentleman told me, “You were the first person to call me ‘Sir’ in 5 years.” Before long, I had a little following at the meal program. It was good to see the smiles on the peoples faces. It was a lot like bartending, except for the fact I was serving beans and hot dogs instead of a rum and coke.

Fast forward to 2023. I went from being on the stage or behind the bar, to being behind the keyboard as both an author and a blog writer, and behind the microphone as a DJ and a host of the “Living the Dream with Neil Panosian” podcast. Highly recommend you check that out. When I was about to release my first book, a well-meaning customer explained to me that it would only sell about a dozen copies. The reason she gave for this prognostication, was that people don’t read anymore and that I didn’t have a major publisher behind me. That book has sold over 1000 copies and counting.

Why are we taking a brief trip through all of my occupations? I did skip hosting a radio and television show for a while. The former of which is the best job I have ever had. The reason why is that while writing about these and other life journeys I have had, I gained a most valuable truth. It is the secret for becoming a success in any endeavor you are engaged in. I unconsciously used the secret in every one of those professions I listed.

A lot of people say that when they become ‘rich and famous’ they will use that fame and fortune to help people. I have learned the best way to become a success at anything, and by doing so make a name for yourself, is to be of service. If you want to be important – be useful. As a bartender, I made sure to get to know my customers. What they drank. Their occupations, their family and anything else that would make them feel valuable. When I helped people at the post office, I would try to make the experience as fun as could be. My thinking was if I was stuck working there and they were stuck doing business there, why not make it the best and most entertaining 3 minutes of their day. As an author, my writing is dedicated to using my experiences in life and the lessons I learn, to benefit others. As a DJ, radio and television host, my goal is to have you walk away feeling better than when you arrived. In my podcast, we share many secrets to improve life and do it in a very entertaining way.

All of these examples are finding ways in which to serve the people I interact with. The more and better I was able to serve them, the more important and significant I became. Even at the meal program that I was fortune enough to help at, service was what set me apart. Everyone there was serving food and beverages, but I was the only one serving dignity and respect. These all became clear to me when I began to write about them for my upcoming book. If you wish to become someone of significance, become someone of service. People will always want to be around, and give their time, business and respect to someone who helps them or makes them feel good about themselves. If we all focused on the best way in which we can best serve each other, we will all be a success.



Here we go! The last day of the year. As we look forward to the new year, many of us will make resolutions and think about what goals we would like to accomplish in the next 365 days. That is good. I would like to encourage that. Looking to improve yourself is always something to strive for. This year, I would like you to contemplate something new. This was brought to me by doing something that I have told you about earlier this year. I heard it while listening to some daily motivational and inspirational videos.

The message came from Inky Johnson, the man pictured above. In case you haven’t read any of my previous posts about him, allow me to provide you a quick explanation. Inky Johnson was a stand out college football player. He was projected to be an early first-round pick and an instant millionaire. He came from a very poor family and was looking forward to being able to help them move to a better location. Only a few games before being drafted, Inky suffered a hit that ended up costing him the use of his right arm and the ability to ever play football again. In one play, all of the years of hard work and dreams of being able to help his family were taken away from him. That would be enough to break most people. Not Inky Johnson. When the doctors told him that he would never be able to use his arm again, he politely corrected them. “I am going to use this arm every day.” was his response. Inky has went on to be one of the most powerful speakers and motivators. He uses his story to inspire those that he speaks to.

When someone like that speaks, I tend to listen. What about all of those years of discipline and hard work that seemed to be for nothing? He has an answer for that too. He said something in this video that really stuck with me. He said if you want long-term success, you should eliminate the outcome. This sounds very counterintuitive, but considering who was speaking, I listened. He explained if you tie your efforts to an outcome, you will never be successful. The outcome, he said, can be taken away from you. I think he knows a thing or two about that. It doesn’t have to be as extreme as his situation. You could have been a great employee for years at your company and then they have to downsize or go out of business. You could work on being a great spouse, and your lover could leave you.

What is the point here? Don’t have any goals? Don’t chase any dreams? Not at all. What Inky said next in the video really made sense. He asked, “What is more important? What you get or who you become?” You see my friends, what you get can always be taken away from you, but who you become is yours forever. If your goal is to get in shape for that class reunion, that is good, but what if it gets canceled? How about getting in shape because you want to give your children someone they can be proud of? How about becoming someone who can be proud of themselves?

When we are setting our goals for the coming year, let us focus on who we want to become and not just what we hope to obtain. Ask yourself, who do you want to be in the coming year?



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.



One of my greatest passions is convincing others of the importance of sharing their own story. It is so important and can benefit everyone when we do. The picture above is when I did just such a thing at an author event recently. We sit down on the Living the Dream with Neil Panosian podcast to discuss just such a thing. While listening to this podcast episode, you will learn several amazing things. You will hear some of the remarkable stories these fellow authors wrote about and were sharing at the event. You will understand why it is so vital you share your story with the world and all of the benefits that come by doing so. You will also learn how to do so without writing a single word…if you don’t want to.

It gives me great pleasure to invite you to click on the link below, sit back and listen to the most recent episode of the Living the Dream with Neil Panosian podcast. While you are there, feel free to subscribe. That way you will be the first to get the latest tools and strategies for living an amazing life.