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Letter from Brazzaville

Brazzaville, the capital city of the Republic of Congo, has a spiffy new airport in the style of Paris or Madrid. Coming in on the RwandAir flight from Kigali, I'm shocked to see actual jet bridges where one can walk directly from the aircraft into the airport. Dozens of times I've landed in random African airports, deplaned the aircraft and been bused to the terminal, even if it's a short walk away and there are no other aircraft anywhere to be seen. As far as I can tell, the logic is, “Hey, we have these buses—we need to use them.”

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The Free Lunch Movement

You may have heard that there is no such thing as a free lunch. This is untrue on every level, and also a terrible lie. Over and over throughout our short lives, all of us have been given something for nothing. We don't deserve free lunch, yet it continues to arrive on a regular basis. No charge, ma'am. This one's on me, sir.

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On the Road Again: Next Stop, Republic of Congo

Greetings, friends and readers. For the past few months I've been confined to a short leash. I visited twenty cities in North America for the first leg of The $100 Startup tour, and I managed to hop over to London for the U.K. launch as well. Last week, I also went on a post-WDS vacation to Alaska. Aside from those trips, however, I've been homebound and my passport has been sorely underused. I'm now heading back out to see the world, with only eight countries remaining ...

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How to Do Big Things

If you want to change the world, follow a dream, or otherwise find your own identity, you need to be able to do big things. In addition to being a prerequisite for growth, doing big things is also a lot of fun. But how do you do them? What steps do you take? Thankfully, much of the work required to do big things relates to the mindset of deciding to do them. With that in mind, consider these suggestions for your own pursuit of meaning and adventure ...

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Moonlight in Alaska

I'm off the grid this week on my first vacation since ... forever. It's a little disorienting, but I'm working on it. A few items of random interest: The $100 Startup continues to race up the charts, returning to the New York Times Bestseller List again this week. Thanks so much for your support! We're planning to do more events in local cities during the first week of September.

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The $100 Investment

Have you ever withdrawn $100,000 in cash from the bank? Me neither ... until last week. This post includes a video from last weekend's World Domination Summit, and a brief explanation on why our team invested $100 in each WDS attendee.

A number of people have asked me to share more about the surprise we unveiled at the end of WDS 2012. As mentioned on Thursday, you can read the experiences of many other people who were at WDS all over the internet. (This list will be updated soon, since there are now more than 150 posts.)

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What Happened at the World Domination Summit

I've been having a hard time writing up my experience at the second-annual World Domination Summit last weekend. I feel exhausted, but mostly in a good way. Our team did a fantastic job, with more than 80 volunteers working together to put on an epic weekend adventure, complete with block parties, dunk tanks, keynote sessions, dozens of workshops and presentations, and ... so much more. I'll be going away for a few days to reflect more on the experience, but I don't want to keep you waiting on a recap—so I'll send you to a few of the 100+ reviews and writeups that have been published by others in the past few days.

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World Domination Summit 2012: Early Photo Recap

For the past five days, I've been immersed in a weekend adventure with 1,000 of our closest friends from more than 20 countries. They'll be able to tell the story better than I can, so at some point soon I'll do a roundup of their posts. (Attendees: link your posts to this one or tag them with #WDS.) For now, here are a few photos that might give the rest of you an idea of what our weekend was like ...

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10 Days to World Domination (The Sequel)

There are 1,000 gift bags taking up every available space in my garage—and also in the foyer, on the stairs, and in various other nooks and crannies around the house. The photo above is approximately 5% of them, and doesn't include countless other boxes, hammock stands, furniture, piles of wood (long story), and various items that will all become needed at the same time next weekend.

“If we do this again next year,” Jolie asked me recently, “Can we get a storage unit?”

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You Can Do That? Great. Go Ahead.

When I shared the story of a man who tightroped across Niagara Falls, someone said, “That's easy! He had a safety harness.”

Every day I hear from someone who thinks my quest to visit every country in the world is invalid because of some technical reason.

When I talk about people who leave their jobs to make their own way through self-employment, I hear about the advantages these people have and how it must be so simple for them.

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Life Is Full of Things You Can’t Fix

Broken hearts. Mistakes that changed the course of a life.

Things that went wrong through no fault of your own, and the things that were your fault.

Global problems. Poverty of all kinds. The war, the famine, the flood.

The activist chooses to believe in the ability to make all things better, sometimes in the face of reason itself. Life is full of things you can't fix, no matter how well-intentioned you are.

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Conversations: Turning Pro, Bravery, and the Get-To World

This week I've been reading Turning Pro, a new call-to-arms by Steven Pressfield. Here's an interesting section on making a choice:

Sometimes, when we're terrified of embracing our true calling, we'll pursue a shadow calling instead. That shadow career is a metaphor for our real career. Its shape is similar, its contours feel tantalizingly the same. But a shadow career involves no real risk. If we fail at a shadow career, the consequences are meaningless to us. Are you pursuing a shadow career?

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