Daniel Powers

Founder of The Botanical Institute

Daniel Powers is the founder of The Botanical Institute. He has a Master of Science in Herbal Medicine (with a focus on herbal formulation) from the Maryland University of Integrative Health.

His passion is in finding the intersection between traditional herbal usage and modern scientific research. His goal is to thread the needle between traditional knowledge and modern scientific breakthroughs.

When Daniel is not reading and writing about herbal medicine, he enjoys spending time with his wife Rachel, and three young daughters (Gwen, Vivian, and Franklyn). He lives on an organic herb farm where he has unlimited access to play & experiment with herbs.

Learn more about Daniel’s work at www.botanicalinstitute.org.

What is your typical day, and how do you make it productive?

I wake up each morning at 4:33 am (precisely), drink a glass of water, and head to the gym. I go to a group fitness gym where I meet with a group of friends and workout with them from 5:00-6:00 am.

Once my workout is done, I head back to my house and make a pot of coffee. I then spend 20-30 minutes having personal devotional time (reading my Bible and praying). As that time finishes out, usually my two oldest daughters (5 and 2) are starting to wake up. I’ll make them breakfast and start getting ready for my day.

I then head to work around 8:00 am, I try and schedule most of my thinking and writing work in the morning (before noon). I then take meetings and calls in the afternoon.

My day consists of writing new content for the Botanical Institute, researching new studies on herbal medicine, and working with my team of writers on producing new content. I am also the chief editor at the Botanical Institute, so I also do a good amount of editing and medical review.

How do you bring ideas to life?

I like to use Google Sheets to plan out ideas and concepts. This allows my analytical brain to see the overall structure of the idea, I can then focus on the steps to accomplish my goal.

What’s one trend that excites you?

I love the recent trend (since 2020) of folks being interested in natural ways to support their health. This has brought a newfound interest (at scale) in people interested in herbs and alternative medicine.

What is one habit that helps you be productive?

One habit I’ve used to increase my productivity is to use different computer logins for different activities. For instance, if I need to write, I’ll log out of my primary computer account and log in to a new account dedicated to writing. I’ll remove social media site access, email, and other distractions from this account so that I can minimize interruptions.

What advice would you give your younger self?

I would tell my younger self to build relationships with mentors and experts that are where you want to be. In recent years I have built strong relationships with individuals who are farther ahead than me – talking with them has greatly increased my education level and competence. It has also increased my confidence in decision-making as I can lean on others’ expertise when faced with a big decision.

Tell us something you believe almost nobody agrees with you.

Retail stores aren’t going away anytime soon. Many people believe that retail is dead due to a decline over the past decade or so. While that may be true, many individuals put a lot of faith in being able to see and touch products and talk to in-store experts. So, while I do think e-commerce will continue to grow, don’t forget about retail.

What is the one thing you repeatedly do and recommend everyone else do?

Take a high-quality multivitamin. It sets your nutrition up for the day by filling in basic mineral and vitamin needs. I also find it energizing. When it comes to health, it’s the little imbalances over time that lead to negative outcomes.

When you feel overwhelmed or unfocused, what do you do?

Many times I don’t do a good job of recognizing when I’m overwhelmed. That’s something that I’m working on. But when I do have recognition, I find having conversations with other people usually gets me unstuck. Essentially, talking allows me to get out of my own head.

What is one strategy that has helped you grow your business or advance in your career?

Maintaining loose social connections with business acquaintances has been very beneficial for me. For instance, if a connection of mine just raised a round of seed money for their firm, I will send them a quick congratulatory email and check in with how they are doing. Those little touch points help to lubricate relationships and keep you in the know about what’s going on in your industry.

What is one failure in your career, how did you overcome it, and what lessons did you take away from it?

My first job ever was in inside sales. After 6+ months of work, I only had 1 customer (and even they didn’t like me). Looking back, I realized that for me, picking up the phone and calling people was difficult for me. Re-framing the proposition and thinking of my conversations with clients as an opportunity to help and support their business – that made life much easier. I also found that talking in person with people was much easier for me than on the phone. I think the initial lack of success in this job helped to create a grittiness in me that has benefited me now, over a decade later.

What is one business idea you’re willing to give away to our readers?

Infant formula products are generally not great. I’d love to see a natural, organic infant formula product that is based on whole foods (i.e. colostrum). The current franken-food options on the market made my corporate conglomerates are suboptimal. If you start this company – please reach out.

What is one piece of software that helps you be productive? How do you use it?

I love WordPress. It makes it so easy to set up a website and publish content. 10/10 recommend.

What is the best $100 you recently spent?

I recently purchased the book Outlive by Dr. Peter Attia. Books typically take me a while to get through, but I thoroughly enjoyed this book and read through it in a week or so. I love his take on longevity and his tactics for healthy aging. I recommend it.

Do you have a favorite book or podcast from which you’ve received much value?

As a healthy fanatic, I really enjoy the Andrew Huberman podcast. He does a great job of getting world-class experts to explain complex health topics in easy-to-understand concepts and phrases.

What’s a movie or series you recently enjoyed and why?

I just watched the Netflix series “Quarterback” – it gave an inside look into the lives of NFL quarterbacks during their season. I found it very entertaining and educational to see how these elite athletes take care of their minds and bodies. Very insightful.

Key learnings:

•Find others who are where you want to be and develop a relationship
•Stick with it – even when things get tough
•Always be educating yourself