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The One-Year, Alternative Graduate School Program

What if learning wasn’t confined to a rigid program in a university? What if you could begin learning now, without going back to school? The One-Year, Alternative Graduate School Program was one of the more popular parts of the original AONC book, in the same chapter where I compared the value of my graduate school…

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A Short Note on Bridge Jumping

When you were a kid and wanted to do something your parents or teachers didn’t like, you may have heard the question, “If everyone else jumped off a bridge, would you?” The idea is that it’s not good to do something stupid, even if everyone else does it. The logic is think for yourself instead…

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What To Do When the Unconventional Opinion Is Wrong

When I’m not roaming the world, I live in Portland, Oregon, land of strong coffee and tall bikes. Portland is a fun little place, and it also happens to be one of the most progressive cities in America. You can buy marijuana at a food cart beginning at approximately age twelve. When George Bush (the…

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Lessons Learned from 11 Years of Travel

Last weekend I had the honor of speaking to 600 people at Frequent Traveler University, a conference devoted to the world of points and miles. A longtime friend, Gary Leff, asked me to share a few lessons from the 11-year journey to every country that just wrapped up a few weeks ago in Norway. What…

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The “Help Someone for Free” Experiment: Results & Observations

Greetings from the road to Anchorage, Alaska—or actually the sky, since it’s a long drive to Anchorage for most of us. Last week we had a real-time experiment where I invited readers to offer something for free. We received hundreds of submissions, many of them in the comments thread of the original post and many…

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How Can You Help Someone for Free? A Social Experiment

Dear Readers and Amazing People, Greetings from Austin, Texas. I had a fun time yesterday with many SXSW attendees and residents of this great city. Special thanks to BookPeople for hosting, to Betty Jean for coordinating a large amount of beer and cupcakes, and to everyone who showed up. Life is good and I’ll be…

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Will It Always Be Like This?

The problem is that you want a new life, or at least some kind of substantive change. You look at what you have, what you do, or who you are, and you long for something else. It may be a problem of the fortunate, in the sense that you don’t have to worry about what…

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Changing the System

I’m back on the road, talking with interesting people every night. Many of them ask questions about “changing the system.” Everyone agrees it’s broken and frustration is expressed all around. But what is this system, why isn’t it working, and how can we change it? When we talk about “the system” we are talking about…

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The Goal

1. To wake in the morning full of life and energy, awaiting the day with anticipation and purpose. To step out into the world ready to accomplish a significant task. To engage and initiate instead of merely responding. To take the active choice that you will make something happen. 2. To maintain harmony and goodwill…

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Powerful Words

The words we use matter. Here are some examples of words or phrases that are especially powerful. Once upon a time. The most powerful words in storytelling. No matter how long the story goes, or how complex it becomes, every story has a beginning. You. Because in business or in life, the more you can…

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What Is Freedom?

For me, everything began with the notion of freedom—the ability to determine the course of my daily schedule and overall life direction. I was very motivated by the opportunity to decide for myself. A normal job didn’t fit into those parameters, so I did everything I could to create my own employment and well-being. But…

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The Reward for Conformity

“The reward for conformity,” Rita Mae Brown said, “is that everyone likes you but yourself.” Thankfully, it’s not always quite that bad. Things are super busy here at World Domination HQ. I’m getting ready to roll out a book tour schedule, a book trailer, a giveaway for 100 free books, and several other fun things.…

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