| EP222. 2019: Year of Action

Direct download: 2019Year_of_Action.mp3
Category:Self-Improvement -- posted at: 5:25pm PST | EP221. Make it Stick: The Science of Successful Learning

Direct download: Make_it_Stick__The_Science_of_Successful_Learning.mp3
Category:Self-Improvement -- posted at: 7:29pm PST | RE-RUN: EP203. Skin in the Game (Originally aired: April, 2018) 


Direct download: RE-RUN-203._Skin_in_the_Game.mp3
Category:Self-Improvement -- posted at: 4:23pm PST

DeanBokhari | EP220. Applying Self-Discipline the Smart Way

Direct download: Applying_Self-Discipline_the_Smart_Way.mp3
Category:Self-Improvement -- posted at: 12:57pm PST | 12 Powerful "Mini Habits" To Practice Daily (Originally aired: Oct. 2015)


  • This episode is from the podcast archives, it was originally published back in October 2015, and remains to be one of my most popular episodes to date. If you've already heard this episode, feel free to use it as a refresher to keep your habit-game in check! 


  • “Mini habits” are daily routines/rituals that take just a few minutes to perform, but have huge returns in the overall quality of your life as a result of doing so. In this episode, I'll discuss my top 12 mini habits and how you can put them into action on a daily basis to enhance your lifestyle.


  • Get the Show Notes:
  • Books Mentioned:
    • n/a
  • Topics Covered:
    • The power of "mini habits"
    • Which mini habits you can practice each day to dramatically enhance the quality of your life
    • How to become more productive and get more done in less time by leveraging mini habits


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Direct download: 12_Powerful__Mini_Habits__To_Practice_Daily.mp3
Category:Self-Improvement -- posted at: 12:11pm PST | 219. Mental Subtraction

Direct download: Mental_Subtraction.mp3
Category:Self-Improvement -- posted at: 1:14pm PST | RE-RUN: EP199. Are You a Morning Person, Night Owl, or Somewhere in the Middle? (Originally aired: 2/11/2018)


"When: The Scientific Secrets of Perfect Timing" by Daniel H. Pink

Get Book (

Get Book Summary (

Direct download: When__The_Scientific_Secrets_of_Perfect_Timing.mp3
Category:Self-Improvement -- posted at: 8:45am PST | EP218. Happiness vs Meaning

Direct download: Happiness_vs_Meaning.mp3
Category:Self-Improvement -- posted at: 6:46pm PST | EP217. The Power of Now


'The Power of Now' by Eckhart Tolle -

Direct download: 217._The_Power_of_Now.mp3
Category:Self-Improvement -- posted at: 3:24pm PST | This is a RE-RUN of one our most popular episodes: EP118. "The Power of PRESENCE - The Secret to Turning Anxiety into Excitement" (originally aired on Jan 6, 2016) 


This episode was inspired by a book called "Presence: Bringing Your Boldest Self to Your Biggest Challenges" by Amy Cuddy. In this episode, we'll be discussing one of Cuddy's actionable (and science-backed) ideas on overcoming nervousness and stress when we're dealing with anxiety-inducing situations.

What you'll discover in this episode: 

  • Why you get anxiety and what to do about it.
  • Why telling yourself to "calm down" when you're stressed or nervous doesn't help---but makes things WORSE
  • A simple method for overcoming stress and anxiety that you can start implementing easily and immediately. 

Book mentioned:

"Presence" by Amy Cuddy 

Direct download: RE-RUN_-_The_Power_of_PRESENCE.mp3
Category:Self-Improvement -- posted at: 3:15pm PST | EP216. Succeed: How We Can Reach Our Goals


In this episode we'll talk about some of Dr. Heidi Grant Halvorson's research on effective goal-setting, inspired by her book 'Succeed: How We Can Reach Our Goals' (grab the book summary here:


'Succeed' by Heidi Grant Halvorson

Direct download: 216._Succeed_-_How_We_Achieve_Our_Goals.mp3
Category:Self-Improvement -- posted at: 1:43pm PST


This is a re-run of EP191. "5 Steps to Unleash Your Success Mechanism." Originally aired: September 2017.

Direct download: RE-RUN_-5_Steps_to_Unleash_Your_Success_Mechanism.mp3
Category:Self-Improvement -- posted at: 11:49am PST | EP215. 7 Simple Ways to Generate Ideas For Anything

Direct download: 215._7_Simple_Ways_to_Generate_Ideas_For_Anything.mp3
Category:Self-Improvement -- posted at: 12:55pm PST | RE-RUN: EP154. You Make Mistakes, Mistakes Don't Make You

Book mentioned:

Psycho-Cybernetics by Maxwell Maltz

Direct download: RE-RUN_You_Make_Mistakes--Mistakes_Dont_Make_You.mp3
Category:Self-Improvement -- posted at: 7:14pm PST | RE-RUN: EP159. 8 Tips to Find Your Calling


Direct download: RE-RUN_8_Simple_Ideas_on_Finding_Your_Calling.mp3
Category:Self-Improvement -- posted at: 7:35pm PST | EP214. 5 Tips For Avoiding Procrastination

Direct download: 214._5_Tips_For_Avoiding_Procrastination.mp3
Category:Self-Improvement -- posted at: 9:20pm PST | EP213. Antifragile

Direct download: 213._Antifragile.mp3
Category:Self-Improvement -- posted at: 12:12pm PST | RE-RUN: EP188. Action Leads to Motivation 

The majority of people looking for motivation will wait for something, or someone, to come around and motivate them before they can get up and take action to motivate themselves.

This is the wrong approach.

I operated with this “motivation comes before action” mentality for years before finally realizing that I had it all backwards. I would look for ways to get motivated to workout, to get up early, or to stop procrastinating and do my work. And I’d be motivated about doing these these things for a little while, but shortly thereafter, the motivation would fade and I’d stop taking action.

Then I realized that the lifespan of motivation is a lot like the honeymoon phase of a new relationship—it’s really exciting at first, but that feeling doesn’t last. A relationship needs to be tended to, with small and thoughtful actions, in order to sustain itself. Motivation works in a similar way. We need to take small and thoughtful actions to keep the motivation train moving along, or else it’ll lose steam and come to a screeching halt.

This realization led me to a simple discovery, which I now believe is the most important thing you need to know about getting motivated:

Action leads to motivation.

Direct download: RE-RUN_Action_Leads_to_Motivation.mp3
Category:Self-Improvement -- posted at: 4:00am PST | EP212. You Are NOT Your Inner Dialogue 


Do you have a constant and never-ending mental critic in your head? In this episode, we'll take a look at how to handle and tame this inner dialogue.


'The Untethered Soul' by Michael Singer

Direct download: 212._You_Are_NOT_Your_Inner_Dialogue.mp3
Category:Self-Improvement -- posted at: 2:00am PST | EP211. Do You Care Too Much About What People Think?

Direct download: Do_You_Care_Too_Much_About_What_People_Think_.mp3
Category:Self-Improvement -- posted at: 11:08am PST • RE-RERUN: EP189. The 5 Second Rule

In this episode, you'll learn about a super-practical, super-powerful principle that'll help you blast past procrastination, anxiety, and nervousness instantaneously... 

It's called "The 5 Second Rule," and it was created by Mel Robbins, who also wrote a book about how to use it (

In today's podcast episode, we'll touch on some practical applications of The 5 Second Rule (for even more actionable insights, you can pickup the FlashBooks summary here (

Direct download: RE-RUN-The_5_Second_Rule.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 6:38pm PST | EP210. Be Specific

Direct download: 210._Be_Specific.mp3
Category:Self-Improvement -- posted at: 1:58pm PST | EP209. Principles: Life and Work 

ABOUT THIS EPISODE | Subscribe to the podcast on iTunes 

In this episode we'll take a look at investor Ray Dalio's 5 principles for success and achievement - as inspired by his book, Principles: Life and Work (see full book summary here.)


Principles: Life and Work by Ray Dalio

Direct download: 209._Principles.mp3
Category:Business -- posted at: 1:27pm PST | RE-RUN: EP200. 12 Rules for Life 

In this episode we'll take a look at the first three "rules for life" from Jordan B. Peterson's book, 12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos (see full book summary here.)


12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos by Jordan B. Peterson | This is a re-run of EP194. "Find Your Why" which originally aired on 11/26/17. 

ABOUT THIS EPISODE | Subscribe to the podcast on iTunes 

In this episode, we'll break down the process of how to find your WHY -- the purpose, cause, or belief that inspires you to do what you do.

This is a Big Idea that comes from a book called "Find Your Why" by Simon Sinek, David Mead, and Peter Docker.

Click the Play button to listen to this episode.



Find Your Why by Simon Sinek - Book Summary

Find Your Why: A Practical Guide for Discovering Purpose for You and Your Team

by Simon Sinek, David Mead, Peter Docker

Direct download: Re-run-How_to_Find_Your_Why.mp3
Category:Self-Improvement -- posted at: 1:31pm PST | 208. Your Declaration of Independence

Direct download: 208._Your_Declaration_of_Independence.mp3
Category:Self-Improvement -- posted at: 4:18pm PST | EP207. 3 Obstacles to Mastery: The Dabbler, Obsessive, and Hacker

Direct download: 207._Meet_the_Dabbler_Obsessive_and_Hacker.mp3
Category:Self-Improvement -- posted at: 11:02am PST | EP206. Sell or Be Sold

Direct download: 206._Sell_or_Be_Sold.mp3
Category:Business -- posted at: 10:00am PST | EP205. Self Development and Communication: 6 Ways to Elevate Your Life by Elevating Your Communication

Direct download: 205._Self_Development_and_Communication.mp3
Category:Self-Improvement -- posted at: 4:00am PST | EP204. Turning Weakness into Strength

Direct download: 204._Turning_Weakness_into_Strength.mp3
Category:Self-Improvement -- posted at: 9:03am PST | EP203. Skin in the Game

Direct download: 203._Skin_in_the_Game.mp3
Category:Self-Improvement -- posted at: 4:00am PST | RE-RUN: EP192. "The Guide To Developing Self-Discipline"

The Guide To Developing Self-Discipline

If you lookup the definition of self-discipline, you’ll usually see something like this: Self-discipline is the power to get yourself to take action regardless of whether you feel like it or not. Developing self-discipline requires a willingness and capability to act — regardless of your current emotional state.

And all of this is true. But it doesn’t go far enough…

Self-discipline is more than simply doing stuff that you don’t want to do… Behind all of that surface-level stuff, there’s usually a deeper, more meaningful reason why you’re interested in developing self-discipline in the first place…

My definition of self-discipline goes like this: Self-discipline is about self-imposed, deeply personal, intrinsically-motivated behaviors repeated regularly enough such that they become part of your moral fabric, your code of conduct.

Throughout this article/podcast, we’ll be focusing on how to develop self-discipline based on the above definitions. By the time you’re finished, you’ll have three specific actions you can start taking today to develop the disciplines you need to achieve your goals and improve your life.

The Guide To Developing Self-Discipline

Available versions: Article | Audio/Podcast

Suppose you decide to discipline yourself to become an early riser.

When you set your alarm clock to wake you up at 5:00AM, you’ve set a disciplined intention to rise at that specific time.

Now, when the alarm goes off the next morning, do you tap the snooze-button, or do you pop out of bed and begin your day?

At this point, some people may say, “But what’s five more minutes?“

Five more minutes means you’ve been unfaithful to yourself… Yourself-disciplined intention—that promise you made to yourself the night before to rise at five—is broken the moment you hit snooze. You’ve started your day with a negative score. And you’ve set the tone for more slips of self-discipline, to let more of the little things slide.

But the little things add up.

Which is why I’m here to say: YES—sometimes you do need to sweat the small stuff…

Because the small stuff prepares you for the big stuff...


Direct download: 192._Developing_Self-Discipline.mp3
Category:Self-Improvement -- posted at: 10:46am PST | EP202. The Compound Effect

Direct download: The_Compound_Effect.mp3
Category:Self-Improvement -- posted at: 4:00am PST | EP201. Idea Killers

Direct download: 201._Idea_Killers.mp3
Category:Self-Improvement -- posted at: 10:20am PST • RE-RUN - EP184. 10 Creativity Books You Need to Read | In this (re-run) episode we'll take a look at my all-time favorite creativity books and what makes 'em so special.


ABOUT THIS EPISODE | Subscribe to the podcast on iTunes 

Increasing your creativity—or developing any sense of creativity in the first place—seems to be hardest when you need it most. Personally, I’d always thought “creativity” was sort of elusive. I thought creative people, like Pablo Picasso, for instance, were blessed with some sort of magical, innate talent that most of us just don’t have. And this is how I’d rationalize why people like Picasso were so much more creative than I was. But, as it turns out, I was dead wrong (kind of.)

You see, most people think Picasso just sat down in front of a canvas and effortlessly cranked out masterpiece after masterpiece all day long, but that’s not how things went down at all. The way Picasso actually painted was much more in-depth. He’d sit down and start at the corner of the canvas with one single stroke of the brush. Then, he’d expand from there, allowing the brush to let him transfer whatever he was envisioning onto the canvas. Sometimes, he’d decide to let an idea take his painting elsewhere. Other times, he’d end up painting something totally different than what he initially envisioned. A few times, he’d start the whole damn thing over again. But, almost every single time, he’d end up with something beautiful.

How did he create so many million-dollar masterpieces? Was he talented? Hell yeah.

Was he “born with it”? Maybe, but people are born with all sorts of talents they neglect to nurture and refine. And that’s the key: cultivation. Picasso cultivated his talent into mastery. He was dedicated to his craft. In other words, he did it often enough to recognize that if he went off the beaten path halfway through a painting, he could take a different route and still end up with a piece of art.

Bottom line? Creativity is neither magical nor mysterious.

Creativity is like a muscle. And if you need help increasing your creativity, then these ten books will show you how to build that muscle up so you can maximize your own creative potential—both personally and professionally. I’ve also listed my own key take-aways from some of these books, as well as my favorite quotes on creativity from each. Hope you dig it!

1. “The War of Art” by Steven Pressfield


“Creative work is … a gift to the world and every being in it. Don’t cheat us of your contribution. Give us what you’ve got.”—Steven Pressfield

“The War of Art” will teach you how to break through the blocks every creative runs into from time to time. It certainly did the trick for me. Reading it almost feels like getting a solid kick in the rear from your very wise, very experienced, grandpa. Creatives have to work through the fear of failure, being their own worst critics and a lack of self-confidence. Pressfield also talks about overcoming procrastination and the energy that comes from working on the things you deem to be your true calling.

2. “Flow” by Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi


“Happiness is not something that happens. It is not the result of good fortune or random chance. It is not something that money can buy or power command. It does not depend on outside events, but, rather, on how we interpret them. Happiness, in fact, is a condition that must be prepared for, cultivated, and defended privately by each person. People who learn to control inner experience will be able to determine the quality of their lives, which is as close as any of us can come.” —Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi

(Take another look at the above quote and notice how applicable it is when you replace the word “happiness” with the phrase “increasing your creativity.”) Ever experience that feeling where you totally lose track of time, you feel absolutely unstoppable and your excellent work just seems to effortlessly stream out of you? That’s called a “flow-state.” And in this book, you’ll learn how to bring it about within your own work.

3. “Lateral Thinking” by Edward de Bono


“Lateral thinking is like the reverse gear in a car. One would never try to drive along in reverse gear the whole time. On the other hand one needs to have it and to know how to use it for maneuverability and to get out of a blind alley.”—Edward de Bono

For some people, the concept of increasing your creativity is sort of like hitting the lottery: There’s a fat chance it’ll happen today, but maybe next time. In “Lateral Thinking,” author Edward de Bono shows us how to align our thinking in a way that actually helps us become more creative. While everyone else is trying to dig the same hole in the same place, this book shows you how to dig a new hole somewhere different.

4. “Steal Like an Artist” by Austin Kleon


“You don’t want to look like your heroes, you want to see like your heroes.”—Austin Kleon

This is a book about permission. It’s about the permission to stop hiding behind your own shadow, the permission to start creating something that actually matters and the permission to stand on the shoulders of giants who came before you and take advantage of their great ideas. The idea isn’t to “steal” other people’s work. (So, don’t do that; stealing is bad.) Just take bits and pieces from other people’s work and make something of your own out of that. If you use people’s stuff to make something of your own, then let them know about it. It’s usually (but not always) flattering.

5. “The Creative Habit” by Twyla Tharp


”In order to be creative you have to know how to prepare to be creative.” ”If art is the bridge between what you see in your mind and what the world sees, then skill is how you build that bridge.”—Twyla Tharp

Twyla Tharp is one of the world’s greatest choreographers. In “The Creative Habit,” she tells us that creativity is exactly that—a habit…If we want to go from creating ordinary work to creating extraordinary work, then we need to develop the habits that’ll help us make that a reality.

6. “The Talent Code” by Daniel Coyle


“Every human skill, whether it’s playing baseball or playing Bach, is created by chains of nerve fibers carrying a tiny electrical impulse— basically, a signal traveling through a circuit. Myelin’s vital role is to wrap those nerve fibers the same way that rubber insulation wraps a copper wire, making the signal stronger and faster by preventing the electrical impulses from leaking out. When we fire our circuits in the right way— when we practice swinging that bat or playing that note— our myelin responds by wrapping layers of insulation around that neural circuit, each new layer adding a bit more skill and speed. The thicker the myelin gets, the better it insulates, and the faster and more accurate our movements and thoughts become.”—Daniel Coyle

In “The Talent Code,” Daniel Coyle, a journalist and reporter, brings us a scientific approach to creativity. In the book, Coyle tells us about a neural insulator called “myelin,” which some neurologists consider to be the key to acquiring skills of every kind… And of course, if you want to level-up your creative output, you’ve gotta level-up your skills. Bottom line? More myelin = creative excellence… Creative excellence in sports. In business. In art. In everything. And if you want to achieve creative excellence, too, then you’ve got to be growing myelin on a regular basis. The best way to do it? 10X the amount of practice you put into becoming the best at what you do. If you’re in sales, call 10X the amount of people you normally do, and you’ll naturally get better and more creative as a result. If you’re a writer, 10X the amount of words you write per day and you’ll naturally get better and more creative as a result. Set goals that are just beyond your reach so that you’ve got no choice to level-up your skills in order to achieve them. That’s how you build more myelin.

7. “Creativity” by Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi


“Creativity is a central source of meaning in our lives for several reasons… First, most of the things that are interesting, important, and human are the results of creativity. We share 98 percent of our genetic makeup with chimpanzees… Without creativity, it would be difficult indeed to distinguish humans from apes.”—Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi

In “Creativity,” Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi schools us on how to leverage flow-states to increase our creativity. In the book, he discusses what he learned after interviewing 91 creative professionals from a wide array of professional endeavors, from astronauts to writers, philosophers and everyone in-between. Here are a few big ideas from the book: Creative people have a thirst to constantly continue learning about their subjects of interest; they never get sick of practicing the fundamentals, and they know how to connect seemingly unrelated ideas together to create something totally new.

8. “Daily Rituals” by Mason Currey


“Inspiration is for amateurs, ... the rest of us just show up and get to work.”—from “Daily Rituals” by Mason Currey

In this creativity book, the author profiles 250 of the most creative people of modern history. Freud. Orwell. Benjamin Franklin. Maya Angelou. Ayn Rand. All these people had creative habits that helped them gain their notoriety. And in this book, Mason Currey details those elements of their daily lives, from when they wake, to how they work, to the foods they eat. Everything’s covered. This is an awesome coffee table book. Pick it up whenever you need some of the world’s greatest thinkers to inspire you towards increasing your creativity.

9. “Creativity, Inc.” By Ed Catmull


“It isn’t enough merely to be open to ideas from others. Engaging the collective brainpower of the people you work with is an active, ongoing process. As a manager, you must coax ideas out of your staff and constantly push them to contribute.”—Ed Catmull

This book is about the intersection of where creativity meets commerce. It was written by the co-founder of Pixar, Ed Catmull. The key creativity take-away I walked away with after reading this book was about igniting higher levels of creativity within an organization. I learned that I could inspire my employees to become more creative by fostering an environment that was actually conducive to creativity.

10. “The Originals” by Adam Grant


“Our companies, communities, and countries don’t necessarily suffer from a shortage of novel ideas. They’re constrained by a shortage of people who excel at choosing the right novel ideas.”—Adam Grant

The actionable insight from this book for me was this: increasing your creativity requires increasing your output. Regardless of what type of work you do, the key to creative genius lays in creating constantly and consistently and in very high quantity. It’s all about volume–those who create the most work increase the odds of creating the best work. Maya Angelou wrote 165 poems, Picasso created over 5,800 works, and 12,000 drawings. Einstein wrote 248 publications. Bottom line? High output —> high creativity.

There Yah Have It—My Top 10 Books For Increasing Your Creativity.

If you want to increase the speed at which you read these creativity books, come join thousands of other peeps over at FlashBooks, where we summarize the best personal development and business books into 20-minute audio-summaries and 10-page PDFs. 

You can signup for $1 here

Direct download: 184._10_Creativity_Books_You_Need_To_Read.mp3
Category:Self-Improvement -- posted at: 1:02pm PST | EP200. Stand Up Straight With Your Shoulders Back 

Direct download: Stand_Up_Straight_With_Your_Shoulders_Back.mp3
Category:Self-Improvement -- posted at: 12:09pm PST | 199. Are You a Morning Person, Night Owl, or Somewhere in the Middle?

(From "When: The Scientific Secrets of Perfect Timing" by Daniel H. Pink)

Direct download: 199._When_-_The_Scientific_Secrets_of_Perfect_Timing__mixdown.mp3
Category:Self-Improvement -- posted at: 4:00am PST • EP176. Goals vs Systems - This is a re-run of one of my most popular episodes, originally released on 2/13/2017. 

Direct download: Goals_vs._Systems.mp3
Category:Self-Improvement -- posted at: 6:52pm PST | EP198. How to Make Yourself Indispensable

Direct download: 198._How_to_Make_Yourself_Indispensable.mp3
Category:Self-Improvement -- posted at: 4:00am PST | 197. The Key to Creating Your Best Year Ever

Direct download: 197._The_Key_to_Creating_Your_Best_Year_Ever.mp3
Category:Self-Improvement -- posted at: 9:40am PST