11 Good Thoughts For Your Heart, by Bob Ross [Poster]


In the early days of Primility.com, before I even really knew what the direction of the site would be, I posted this: 11 Good Thoughts For Your Heart (From the Bob Ross ‘Happy Little Clouds’ Remix).

It’s still one of my favorite posts that I’ve ever written, in large part because I’m still in love with the brilliant song it is based on.

Of all the great songify YouTube videos that have been put out there, and there have been a lot of them, this one (produced by PBS) is by far my favorite. The music is a small part of it. The message is the rest.

I was never a painter. I was never any kind of artist in the way Bob Ross was. Blank paper and word processors have always been my canvas, and words have always been my paint.

So I never learned anything from Ross’ specific tips on painting … but I sure have learned a lot from his views on work and on life in general. Those lessons are what the song highlights. And they are Ross’ most enduring legacy (he passed away in 1995).

Rafal Tomal, my incredibly talented colleague at Copyblogger, was also influenced by Bob Ross. On that original post I wrote, Rafal commented: “You just put together my entire life philosophy in this one blog post ;) What do you think if we make a printable poster with these 11 thoughts?”

Of course, I thought it sounded like a great idea. And I’m excited to publish that poster today. Continue Reading

4 Lessons Learned During My Two-Month Adventure in Breathtaking South America (Photos)

Sitting on top of Mt. Pichincha, overlooking the city of Quito, Ecuador.
Sitting on top of Mt. Pichincha, overlooking the city of Quito, Ecuador.


[Editor's note: Sonia Thompson is one of the very first people who signed up for the Primility email list and requested a wristband -- she's #9 right here. Recently, Sonia went on a two-month journey throughout South America. Several weeks ago, I shared an email she sent to me that explained how Primility was influencing her trip. Today, I'm ecstatic to be able to share this post, which Sonia wrote upon her return, telling stories about her trip and sharing the lessons that she learned.]

“Sonia, practica!”

The perky dance instructor showed me the exercise and left me on my own to work on some basic techniques for tango. Instead of welcoming her warm smile and instruction on how to become a better dancer, I was making excuses.

Practice? I don’t want to practice. I look dumb. I’m not sure if I’m doing it right. Isn’t it getting late? I should be home writing. Besides, I can already officially say I danced tango in Argentina. I can safely check this box. It’s not like I’m gonna do this when I get home. So I don’t need to do this.

Those were just some of the thoughts running through my mind once the instructor turned her back. It was my fourth day in Buenos Aires, and my second tango class. My pride was working overtime, speaking to me very loudly in both ears.

Had I listened, I’d have missed out on what became a source of great joy for me. So I told those voices to beat it, humbled myself, and did the exercise.

During my two months traveling through four countries in South America, Primility moments of truth like these were at the forefront of my mind on a daily basis.

Here are a few lessons I picked up along the way as a result. Continue Reading

The Pride and Humility of Wilson (The Dog Who Lost His Lower Jaw)


[Editor's note: So many of you have asked if I will be accepting guest posts here at Primility, and a few of you have even submitted posts for my review. I cannot describe how exciting that is, and how proud it makes me, to see other people filled with enthusiasm about primility -- and bursting with ideas to share. So I am going to start sharing these guest posts regularly. I'm thrilled to do so. And we'll start with Peter Morneault, one of the very first Primility subscribers.]

I have grown accustomed to having intellectually stimulating conversations with Elena, a foster mom for a rescue dog foundation.

She and I share a common passion: we like dogs.

Scratch that. We LOVE dogs. So, as professionals we do what we can to help disabled, broken, and unwanted dogs become adoptable.

As a dog trainer, I have worked with a wide variety of dogs: little dogs, big dogs, aggressive dogs, shy dogs. I try to help them all.

But even years of experience and a passion for my work never prepared me for the following example of primility … Continue Reading

What You Think Doesn’t Matter


It doesn’t matter what you think.

It really doesn’t.

Stop me if you’ve heard this before: Oh, I was going to do that, but then such-and-such came up and I couldn’t.

More than heard it, you’ve probably said it. A lot. I bet we all have.

I thought about calling, I just never got around to it.

Ah, it was next on my to-do list! I’ll get it done next time around. 

The coulda-shoulda-wouldas.

This is why I say it doesn’t matter you think, or what I think. It matters what we do. Continue Reading