The distinct outcome in the difference between the habits we nurture or don’t nurture – the contrast between surviving the daily grind or thriving in spite of it.




On April Fool’s Day 2009, jeff noel began writing five daily, differently-themed blogs (on five different sites). It was to be a 100-day self-imposed “writer’s bootcamp”, in preparation for writing his first book. He hasn’t missed a single day since.


This website is about our mental attitude. To easily and safely leave this site to read today’s post on jeff’s physical health website, click here.


He was unassuming in midlife

College Admission logistics seminar
Yesterday, one of the first to arrive.


College Admission logistics seminar
Pretty compelling reasons to listen.


College Admission logistics seminar
He’s there to sell more stuff, truth be told. No harm, no foul.


College Admission logistics seminar


College Admission logistics seminar
Not a great photo, but definitely captures a moment in time.


College Admission logistics seminar
Panorama. Seniors did not attend.


He was unassuming in midlife. Arriving early, i introduced myself but never mentioned i am a speaker too.

He was much better than i had expected. Shame on me for stereotyping.

His energy, enthusiasm, stage presence, and subject matter expertise was exceptional. When i had asked how many times he had given this presentation, he said it was over 2,000.

He was polished.

And then something unexpected happened, and as a speaker with no influence, i watched helplessly from the last row. The audience’s attention slowly started unraveling after an hour. We still had 45 minutes to go. It got worse.

Not once in the hour and 45 minute speech, for example, was the audience invited to stand up. Not once was the audience invited to do something fun or silly.

Being polished is a double-edged sword.

A room of 300 teens after lunch is a handful – all the way to the finish line.

Insight: i’m thinking deeply about my presentations, especially the second halves.




This website is about our mental attitude. To leave this site to read today’s post on my physical health website, click here.

Midlife repetition is the mother of all excellence or not

Sunrise looking west (instead of East)


(photo: Unusually early thunderstorm clouds at 7am… cut the run short to only one mile)

We’ve heard the first two over and over, but the third one?

If not you, who?
If not now, when?
If not at all, why?

Midlife repetition is the mother of all excellence.

Or maybe not.

Every dang day?

If we desire excellence, you know, thriving, then yes.

Neglect and excuses are the other (unintentional) option.

Daily habits either way?


Never forget that.

Next Blog

Thriving in the key of midlife

Walt Disney World 2014 tee shirt
Walt Disney World has been our hometown for three decades.


Thriving in the key of midlife is challenging if not downright difficult.

So much fear of the unknown creeps in.

Playing it safe suffocates our dreams.

Boomers are thinking about retiring at 55, 60, or 65.

In other words, in a few months, or not for another five or ten years.

There’s a big difference in what’s at risk, and what’s to be gained.

Early retirement sacrifices pension potential and increases health care costs.

Later retirement sacrifices healthy and precious ‘now’ time to do things we may not get to do years from now.

The case for doing either one is strong.

This makes it difficult.

Next Blog

The difference between these two makes all the difference

Target slogan
False advertising? More like: Expect more, pay more. The long way is the short cut.


We can go our whole life never drawing a real line, only an imaginary one that moves at our whims and desires.

Morality, like art, means drawing a line someplace. – Oscar Wilde

We either build our attitude on rock or we build it on sand.

We know this.

But do we act on it?

It’s the difference between merely surviving and totally thriving.

Next Blog