Reset

Success as a Travel Blogger

Over the weekend I went to Girona, Spain to give the closing keynote at TBEX, a gathering of travel bloggers. After missing the only flight out of the Seychelles on the night I was supposed to travel, I almost didn't make it. I had to regroup and reroute the whole trip as quickly as possible, and ended up flying through the night the next day and then the morning of the day after that. Fortunately, I made it just in time. I wasn't able to sightsee in Girona itself, but it was fun to catch up with old friends and speak to an engaging group of enthusiastic people. The topic of my talk was on success, specifically how people can expand their platform in an authentic way. Here are a few points I touched on ...

Read More

Self-Employment and Security (Once Again)

Let's do this one more time, because it's important. Micro-entrepreneurship is changing the world. The best opportunities in the new economy are centered on creating your own assets. It doesn't matter who wins the U.S. election this fall, at least not in terms of how the economy affects you. No matter what happens, the unemployment rolls will continue to be full. Perhaps even worse, many people will remain underemployed by working at jobs that offer few benefits and little opportunities for advancement.

Read More

How to Ensure You’ll Do Anything

If there's something you need to do, but you keep putting it off—or if there's something you'd like to do but don't seem able to push through, there's at least one easy way to fix it. The solution begins with understanding why we procrastinate. The simple answer is: because we can. To solve the problem, therefore, we need to eliminate the ability to defer. If the task is short but dreaded (a phone call you don't want to make, for example), you can simply decide not to leave the room until it's complete.

Read More

Travel Hacking Anywhere Without Credit Cards

Since posting the 2012 Frequent Flyer Challenge, I've fielded a ton of queries from people about how it works, which cards are best for their needs, and the occasional complaint from someone who feels like this information is too good to be shared. The short response is: it works very well. I'll be receiving more than 200,000 miles from my recent applications, in addition to several million miles over the past few years. These opportunities aren't going away anytime soon, so you might as well get in on them if you can.

Read More

Lessons from Illustrating The $100 Startup

I'm back on the road to meet readers of The $100 Startup! After a summer break where I hosted WDS 2012 with a great team, traveled to Yemen and Congo, and began work on an upcoming business project, I'm glad to be hanging out with readers again and talking about freedom almost every night. If you've read the book already, you might recognize the great illustrations that accompany the text. These were created by Mike Rohde, a Milwaukee-based artist.

Read More

Unnecessary Traffic Lights

Have you ever pulled up to a stoplight and waited ... and waited ... while there was no other traffic in sight?

Three minutes later, the light finally changes, and you pull away ... with no other traffic in sight?

A couple of years ago, this happened to me late at night while I was traveling in the midwest. I sat there and kept thinking: what a useless stoplight. What am I waiting for?

Read More

On the Road Again: Next Stop, SoCal (and beyond)

Happy Labor/Labour Day! If you're in the U.S. or Canada, I hope you're enjoying the holiday. Everyone else, enjoy the lull in traffic while many people in North America are offline doing other things. As for me, I'm heading back out on the road, flying down to San Diego today and then around the U.S. for a few more tour stops over the next two weeks ...

Read More

Perseverence (AKA “No, It’s Not OK To Quit”)

Late Saturday afternoon, I set out to run 20 miles. I'd love to say it was a beautiful run, filled with energy and good thoughts, but in reality it was terrible. After mile one I was in pain. After mile three it was worse. This was an important training run for the Chicago Marathon I've signed up for in October, and I almost quit. I thought about turning around or walking home, or even calling a cab and paying for it with the cash I had put in the bottom of my shoe.

Read More

The Frequent Flyer Challenge Returns!

In the early days of this blog, I conducted a public experiment. Over the course of 45 days, I applied for every credit card I could find that offered a sign-up incentive of Frequent Flyer Miles or hotel points. I had been applying for cards for years with success, earning 200,000+ miles every year with little effort and no adverse effect on my credit score, which remained in the 90th percentile or higher. However, I had never applied for so many cards all at once. Would it work? Would my accounts be shut down?

Read More

How To Be Unhappy

The pursuit of happiness is as old as modern civilization. Books, elixers, religions, and philosophies are all devoted to it. Happiness is a quest, an obsession, and a universal aspiration. But what does it take to be unhappy? In some ways, it's easier than happiness itself. New research and much life experience offers a simple recipe for genuine discontent.

Read More

5 Short Notes on Gratitude

When I wasn't getting extorted or doing drugs in Yemen, I enjoyed touring around with my fixer. Several times, I noticed that when we passed a beggar on the street, he took a small amount of money from his pocket and gave it to them. Observing this behavior caused me to think. I'm supposed to give to the poor, but do I really?

Read More

Want to Increase Income? Take a Quick Survey for Our Next Project

I'm excited to make an (early) announcement about our first business project in more than a year. This project is all about helping people improve their business—or create a successful new one—by understanding why people buy, and what they really want. If you're just getting started, you can spend a grand total of $13 and pick up a copy of The $100 Startup, which now has more than 100,000 copies in print around the world ...

Read More

Adventures in Yemen

Upon my arrival in Sana'a, the capital city of Yemen, it took a while to get underway. Immigration was uneventful and I had met the guy who would serve as my guide for the next three days, but we had a problem finding a working taxi to take us downtown. After putting my bag in the back of the first taxi, I went to sit down, but a heated argument was taking place between the guide and the driver. Finally it was determined that this driver was attempting to extort us, so I retrieved my bag and we walked further down the road, where cheaper taxis were available ...

Read More

Starting a Business While Working a Full-Time Job

For every self-employed person, there are a lot more people who would like to be. But many of these people already have jobs, and everyone is busy. Here's an idea: if you're working a regular job and want to be on your own someday, don't wait for a career break that may never come. Instead, start the business now ... without waiting to quit or take a leave of absence. Why would you want to do this? Two good reasons: opportunity and security.

Read More