Need vs Want

Posted in Business, Funny, Motivational, Relationships

Need vs Want dan skognes motivation blogger speaker teacher trainer coach educatorWants can get you into trouble. There is nothing inherently wrong with wanting something, but when you confuse wants with needs you are headed for some pitfalls. We live in a very materialistic age where it is easy to be consumed with stuff. It seems that we are constantly being bombarded with ads to buy this or that. You can’t be satisfied till you get THIS. Then you get it and say, “What was I thinking???”

Recognize this about wants:

  • They tend to be emotional decisions. You want that Mercedes, but you need reliable transportation and can afford only half as much. Be careful about making emotional decisions. Take the emotion out of it and think about the consequences. You may have to live with that decision for many years.
  • They are endless. There is always more to be had. Learn to be grateful for what you have and focus more on what is needed vs. what you want.
  • Wants and needs can be the same thing. When that is the case, go for it. Just make sure you are being truthful with yourself. You really NEEDED that 75” big screen TV because your eyesight was failing you…right???  LOL.

Advertisers will always play to your emotions. They want to create that hunger in your belly that can only be satisfied with their product. There is nothing wrong with advertisers doing their job. Just understand the game they play.

Relationships also fall prey to the wants vs. needs dilemma. People get into wrong relationships every day because they lose sight of what really matters. It is like the lyrics from the country song, “Looking for love in all the wrong places.”

Here is the contrast:

  • We want a mansion; we need a roof over our heads.
  • We want to get promoted; we need to do what we were hired to do without complaining.
  • We want a lot of money in the bank; we need to start saving, investing, and live within a budget.
  • We want a meaningful relationship; we need to learn to give instead of take.
  • We want the Cowboys to win the Super Bowl. We NEED the Cowboys to win the Super Bowl. Come on…you know we are due! LOL.

Next time you are making out your wish list of things you want, go through and ask yourself: “What do you really need?” Start with that list and you will have fewer regrets and a lot more peace.



Dan Skognes


Posted in Funny

ALIENS dan skognes motivation blogger speaker teacher trainer coach educator

I recently went to see the new Alien movie. I think I have seen all of them. The latest one was a little unnerving to say the least. I came out of the movie and realized that we have aliens among us!

I am not talking about the kind in the movie with the metal teeth that can tear you apart in one bite…although I have personally known a couple of them and let’s just say…I am lucky to be alive today and still have all my limbs intact.

I am going to reveal to you the biggest cover-up that nobody is even talking about. The elephant in the room is huge, yet not one person is acknowledging that it is there. The aliens are…..women!

You might think it is a joke, but this is real! Think about it. When a woman turns her head and gives a man that “look,” he melts like snow on a hot summer day in Texas. Or, when she is wearing those stiletto heels and strutting her stuff, the man is following her like a sheep going to the slaughter!

We are in trouble, guys. We are at war and don’t even know it. They put this stuff on their face and call it makeup, but it is war paint, guys. Wake up! Look at how many of them there are. They make up about half of the population in the world now. We marry them…have more little aliens. It is out of control!

They have pretty much taken over. They are in leadership positions around the world. Think how close we came to having Hillary as President. OMG! And thing about this, the Statue of Liberty is a what??? A woman! And why is she all green?  She is wearing camo!!! They are blending in and taking over.

I am not trying to be paranoid or anything, but there is a knock at the door. If it is a woman…I am not answering it. Oh no……it is my SISTER! How do I not give away that I KNOW what is going on??? Breathe Dan, breathe.

Here are my survival tips for dealing with aliens:

  • They are known for having to get out their 50,000 words a day. If you can’t handle that, get them a dog or two. That is why dogs were created. They are already under their spell. Just watch them and how they love their master aliens.
  • When speaking with an alien, never ask them what they think about something. Ask them how they FEEL about something if you want to even come close to understanding them. Even then it won’t make sense, but the alien will feel understood.
  • I realize that they are beautiful creatures, but don’t be fooled. They are controlling your mind right now.

I hope these tips will help you survive the perilous days ahead. I have to run now. I have things to do on my “honey-do list.” I will survive!


Dan Skognes

Grow Up

Posted in Funny, Motivational, Relationships, Spiritual

Grow Up dan skognes motivation blogger speaker teacher trainer coach educator1I was trying to get a little girl to move up closer to a couple of little boys in the lunch line. When I asked her if she would, she said, “No. They are nasty!” I told her, “Unfortunately, it will be a while before they outgrow that. Be patient with them.” She got this far away look in her eyes and said, “Some of them will never outgrow it.” Wow, out of the mouths of babes. She did not realize the truth of what she spoke.

Later that same morning in the lunchroom one of the custodians came over to me and asked me if I had kids. I shook my head yes. He said, “I can’t believe I was ever this brain dead!”  LOL. He had asked some kid why he had thrown food and the kid got this deer in the headlight look and just sat there. He had no good excuse.  Busted!

Here are a few things I have observed. They are broken down by age groups. See if you can identify any of these behaviors in adults you know:

  • Kindergarten kids. They are in your face all the time and very needy. They have few social skills, are very possessive, and expect you to do everything for them. They are learning the art of tattling.
  • 1st and 2nd graders. Slightly more skilled socially, but boys and girls do not respect the other gender. They have mastered the art of tattling and still want to be in your face and talk over you when you are talking.
  • 3rd and 4th graders. At this age they are starting to find their friends and become aware that they either fit in or don’t. They tend to listen better than the younger kids, but they are more opinionated and still easily offended. They are learning the art of blaming others or blaming their circumstances for their bad choices.
  • 5th and 6th graders. Wow. Not sure what happened to their judgment, but there is very little common sense at this age. If someone dares you, you do it. If someone pushes you or offends you in any way, you push back and at the very least give them your smack talk. Girls and boys are starting to be attracted to the other gender and there is constant giggling and whispering about each other. Neither gender understands the other one, but there is something that attracts them like the moth to the flame.

Unfortunately, you can probably think of adults that are still stuck in some of these behaviors. I think this explains why some kids can’t seem to adjust their own behaviors. Look at their role models.

I was laughing with one of my fellow 3rd grade teachers. I asked her, “Wouldn’t you love to have had ME as one of your students?” She rolled her eyes and said, “I would have had to be correcting YOU a lot!” I actually was a pretty good kid and seldom got in trouble. The times I did get in trouble were when I talked too much or was laughing about something. I found out in 4th grade math class that I could make people laugh just by burping.  LOL. That was funny for the moment, but I caught it when I got home with Dad.

There is a proverb that says: When I was a child, I spoke as a child, understood as a child, I thought as a child. When I became a man, I put away childish things. If you are a grown up, it is time to grow up.


Dan Skognes

Quit Worrying

Posted in Funny, Motivational, Spiritual

Our Basic Needs dan skognes motivation blogger speaker teacher trainer coach educator


Have a little faith.


Dan Skognes

21 Things You Don’t Want To Lose

Posted in Funny

21 Things You Dont Want To Lose dan skognes motivation blogger speaker teacher trainer coach educator


Posted in Funny, Motivational, Relationships

Cooties dan skognes motivation blogger speaker teacher trainer coach educator1The other day I had two 3rd graders come up to my desk as I was working on the next lesson for the day. They immediately pointed fingers at each other and started blaming one another for starting it. I looked at both of them and said, “I know what is going on here. You LIKE each other!”  LOL.  “Ewwwwwwww. Noooooooooooo” came the cry from both of them. They looked at each other, shrugged, and went back to their desks.

The teacher that was working with me laughed and said, “There is a lot of truth to that.” That is when I realized that Cooties are really a GOOD thing. We were always led to believe that if someone had Cooties, we were to avoid them like the plague. The truth is, we ALL have Cooties. Too bad it takes hormones to kick in for us to realize that what I am saying is true.

I watched a couple of 6th grade kids in the lunchroom. They were giggling as I walked up and she whispered to me, “We are holding hands under the table.”  It was sweet and reminded me of that age and Darlene Willis, my first crush. Darlene had this long red hair and she had this magical way of making my stomach flip…in a good way. We held hands in church (under the hymnal…of course). I sweat bullets getting the courage up to do THAT.

Once the Cooties truly start to grow, those things in the opposite sex that made us mad now make us crazy.  LOL. A guy can be standing outside, looking off into the distance (probably wondering what his Mom is making for dinner tonight), and he runs his hands through his hair. The girls nearby swoon and giggle at how “dreamy” he is.

Or, take the girl who is walking down the hallway past a person of interest. She stops for a moment, casts a sideways glance and grins just slightly as if to say “Hi.” This, of course, hits him like a thunderbolt. He is like the deer in the headlights and he does not know how to respond except to give a nervous wave and a slight smile in return.

And so the dance begins. The attraction was there all along, we just did not know it was Cooties. Next time you have two young kids arguing and blaming one another, try pointing out to them that they really LIKE one another. It immediately stops the argument and gives all of you a great laugh. Cooties….who knew?


Dan Skognes

Funny Things Kids Have Said To Me

Posted in Funny

Superman dan skognes motivation blogger speaker teacher trainer coach educator1

As you probably know, I go by Superman at school, so many of the remarks made to me have to do with my claim to be a Super Hero.

  • “Isn’t Superman supposed to be young?” To that I replied, “Hey…I am 111 years old. What do you expect? But I look good, right???”  Once kid replied to me, “I didn’t think you were over 80!”  Thanks a lot, Buddy. LOL.
  • “Isn’t Superman supposed to have Abs?” I just looked at him sideways and said, “What are you trying to tell me???”  I puff out my chest…but it does not help much. LOL.
  • “Isn’t Superman supposed to have hair?” To that I show them the hair on the back of my head.  “See…I have hair!!!” LOL.
  • “If you are Superman, FLY!!!!” To that I reply, “I NEVER fly without my cape.” Then they ask, “Where is your cape???” I tell them, “It is at home being washed by my wife….Wonder Woman.”  Then I give them the double thumbs up. LOL.
  • “If you are Superman, use your laser eyes!!!” To that I reply, “I did use my laser eyes recently. I was looking in the mirror and look what it did to my head!!!”  LOL.
  • “Show us some super powers!!!” I show them two things. One is I thump my cheek and make this sound like water dripping. They are amazed that I can make this sound for some reason.  LOL. Then the other thing I do is twist my arm around to where it is turned completely around. Not sure why I can do this.  It is a gift.  LOL.
  • One kid came up to me when I was sitting at the teacher’s desk reading over some of the assignments. He poked my belly with his finger and asked, “Are you pregnant?”  LOL. As my mind was swimming on how to respond properly to this child, one of his classmates came to my rescue when he exclaimed, “Boys don’t have babies, GIRLS do!” Whew!  I dodged a bullet with that one.  LOL. That comment gave me incentive to go on a diet and I lost 25 lbs.
  • I play music for the kids regularly and one kid asked, “How do you know about OUR music.”  I just looked over my glasses at him and said, “Do you know who I am???” Then I revealed my Superman T shirt….LOL. The funny thing is, I really do know their music better than they do. It freaks them out when I can sing the lyrics to some of their songs.

One thing I know for sure about kids, you NEVER know what they are going to say.


Dan Skognes

Girls Rule

Posted in Funny, Motivational, Relationships

Girls Rule dan skognes motivation blogger speaker teacher trainer coach educator1When I am talking to little kids, sometimes I will say things to shock them. It is hilarious!  I ask them, “Are you married?”  LOL. Or, I ask them, “Is this your boyfriend?”  They squirm and shout, “NOOOOOOO! Ewwwwwww!!!”  LOL.

The little kids haven’t quite figured it out yet. Girls rule. There was a great quote from My Big Fat Greek Wedding that went something like this: “The man is the head, but the woman is the neck, and she can turn the head any way she wants.”  There is so much truth to that.

Another favorite line of mine was from Jesse Jackson.  He was being interviewed and asked about his marriage of 25 years to the same woman and what he attributed his successful marriage to. He said, “In my marriage, I make ALL the important decisions. However, let me add that in 25 years we have yet to have an important decision to make.”  LOL.

Funny how girls go from having cooties to making guys go crazy over them in the matter of just a few years. I was telling a young boy this the other day. I told him, “You want her to treat you like a king?” He said, “Yes!”  I said, “Then treat her like a queen.” This is the problem with so many relationships. The boys / men have not recognized the queen.

I intervened in an argument that a little boy and girl were having at lunch in the cafeteria. The little girl complained how rude the boy had been to her. I looked at him and said, “You had better treat her right. When you mess with her, you mess with me.”  She smiled and gave me a high five.  LOL.

Let me just say that my wife is the queen. I admit it. She rules my heart. I love her and serve her gladly. I am fortunate to have her in my life and I recognize the gift that she is to me. She is like a delicate flower….beautiful, unique…and with a funny way of talking (she IS from Arkansas…LOL). The day I met her, she had me at hello… borrow another famous movie line. She batted those big brown eyes at me and I melted.

So, if you are a guy….wise up and serve the queen. It sure makes life more exciting when you rule together….loving each other, serving one another, and facing the issues of life together. There is a proverb that says a house divided cannot stand. Let the queen know you will be there to serve her and you will have her attention. Stand up to defend her and provide for her and you will have her heart.


Dan Skognes

Warning Signs

Posted in Business, Funny, Motivational, Relationships

Warning danskognes motivation blogger speakerA little boy was in the checkout line at Walmart with his Mom. Right ahead of them was a woman waiting to pay her bill. All of a sudden her phone began to beep. The little boy got a panicked look on his face and blurted out, “Look out Mom, she’s backing up!”  LOL. Paints quite a visual….doesn’t it?

There are all types of signs that warn us to stop, yield, slow down, etc. Some of them are literal signs…and some of them are not so obvious. I have been doing intervention work with elementary school kids who are behind academically. We are trained to observe and document behavior that is abnormal. These kids have been diagnosed with learning disabilities already. They are the ones who are getting immediate help.

The kids I am really concerned about are the ones who have not been diagnosed yet and you can hear their silent screams a mile away. You can see the anger, the sadness, and lack of hope in their eyes. Those are the ones that as an educator and a parent I try to help in spite of the system.

Dr. Phil says, “When someone shows you who they are…believe it.” That is great advice in relationships. Pay attention to the warning signs. There are severe and sometimes life-long consequences for ignoring the signs. With children, kids have to learn early how to control their emotions. Some of this will come with peer pressure, but the majority of it comes from the parents and educators who set the standards. The sad part of this is that too many kids have no standards set at home…or they are so low they don’t matter.

Our role as educators is to recognize the warning signs and do what we can to help get them and keep them on the right path. It is a continual battle, it seems, but one that has great reward when you see the child that was isolated become fully functioning. My hope and prayer is that we as educators and parents not just recognize the warning signs, but that we do everything humanly possible to help kids learn to control their own behavior, actively engage in the learning process, and never lose hope.  We can’t expect them to do this on their own…and the schools certainly can’t do it without some support from the parents. Please pay attention and accept responsibility for the signs.


Dan Skognes

Follow Me

Posted in Funny, Motivational, Spiritual

Follow Me dan skognes motivation blogger speaker teacher trainer coach educatorSpringtime is the season for terrible storms in Texas. It is a roofer’s dream and a homeowner’s nightmare. We recently had a severe thunderstorm watch and they were predicting SOFTBALL size hail!

Our garage only has room for one car…so we had to do something to prepare for the coming storm. We decided to take my wife’s van to the local hospital and park it in their garage. Apparently half of Grapevine does the same thing as it was already getting crowded when we got there.

We were getting ready to leave and my wife said, “I’ll just follow you.” We start down the road towards the hospital and I look and see that my wife is not in the turn lane…she is going straight through the light!  She did not have a cell phone and I had no way of contacting her to see what she was doing.

I got to the hospital and there she was…coming from a different direction. After we got her parked in the garage, I asked her why she didn’t follow me and she said, “I did not like the direction you were going.”  LOL. It all worked out, but it could have been a real pickle to deal with. I told her, “If you tell me you are going to follow me…then follow me.” She said, “Well, I won’t tell you that again.”  LOL. Um-hmmm.

When we went back to pick up her car the next day, I dropped her off and she asked me, “How do I get out of here?”  I told her, “You are on your own!”  LOL. Of course, I got a good laugh as I was driving DOWN the ramp to get out and I see her driving UP the ramp! I pointed to go MY direction and I waited for her to catch up.

All kidding aside, don’t we do this with God? Don’t we say, “I’ll follow You,” and then we do our own thing because we don’t like the direction He is taking us? We need to follow God. He never makes mistakes. He always knows what to do and where to go. If you are not going to follow Him, don’t tell Him you are going to. He does not take vows lightly. Trust Him. Follow Him…and you will get to the destination you need to be.

P.S. The terrible hail that was predicted never came. God spared us.


Dan Skognes