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The Whole Truth and Nothing But the Truth

My nice university-sponsored health insurance is ending soon, so I thought it would be good to go in for a check-up. On Friday morning I headed down to the university clinic right next to where I used to go to school. The good news is that I’m fit and healthy, as I expected to be.…

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How To Run 26.2 Miles on the Open Sea

Hi everyone… I had a bit of an adventure last week. My parents and little sister came to visit in Seattle, and we took a 7-night cruise to Alaska. A few years ago the ship we were on caught on fire during a Caribbean cruise, but nothing exciting like that happened on our trip. There…

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You Are Incredibly Rich

If you’re reading this essay, I have some good news for you today: the odds are that you are very well-off in the financial sense. In fact, in case you’ve never realized it before, you are incredibly rich. Surprise! You may not have realized how rich you are, so I thought I’d show you how…

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Giving Up the Lottery Fantasy

Ever play the lottery? If you have, did you spend a few seconds thinking about what it would be like to win when you scratched off that ticket or selected your magic numbers? Don’t lie—no one is listening except yourself. Here’s my guess: If you ever bought a lottery ticket, OF COURSE you thought about…

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Everyone Loves to Hate a Winner

Photo credit: WordFreak I read an online article recently that listed eight annoying people you’ll meet in the typical Starbucks. My favorite, or actually my least favorite, is the guy who hates Starbucks, but ends up going there every day. In Seattle we have no shortage of Starbucks haters, many of whom go there often.…

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The Normalization of Mediocrity

I recently came back to Seattle after traveling for two weeks, and began eating simple, organic food again. I’m a vegetarian wherever I go, but I don’t always eat very well when I’m out around the world. After getting back on track after all the travel and different countries, I started feeling better within 24…

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The Land of Too Much

Two years ago I was working in Liberia, West Africa and came to Chicago for a three-day conference. Coming out of West Africa to Europe and then North America is always a huge culture shock, and when I went all that way for just a weekend conference, I felt more disoriented than ever. I stayed…

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How To Fall Down and Get Back Up Again

This is a lesson on how to look absolutely ridiculous in front of a crowd of strangers, and how to recover as gracefully as possible. Well, let’s clarify that a bit: the first part is easy, since I am constantly making stupid mistakes all over the world and trying to minimize the embarrassment. I have…

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Nothing Beside Remains…

I met a traveller from an antique land Who said: Two vast and trunkless legs of stone Stand in the desert. Near them on the sand, Half sunk, a shatter'd visage lies, whose frown And wrinkled lip and sneer of cold command Tell that its sculptor well those passions read Which yet survive, stamp'd on these lifeless things, The hand that mock'd them and the heart that fed. And on the pedestal these words appear: "My name is Ozymandias, king of kings: Look on my works, ye Mighty, and despair!" Nothing beside remains: round the decay Of that colossal wreck, boundless and bare, The lone and level sands stretch far away.

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The Plan of Attack

After you make a decision to be remarkable and recruit a small army, you need a plan of attack. How will you accomplish your world takeover goals? There are lots of ways to formulate a plan of attack. My own planning is usually constructed through mind-maps and process-oriented thinking. I work backwards from the goal,…

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The Flip Side of Self-Employment and Freedom

Entrepreneurs are a diverse bunch of people, but when you ask them to tell you the greatest benefit of being self-employed, you’ll usually hear the same answer over and over. That answer is FREEDOM, and rightly so. When you work for yourself, no one tells you what to do—at least not in the same way…

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How to Respond to Critics

As part of your independent-minded journey, many people will oppose you along the way. Some will oppose you by saying that you “can’t” do the things you’ve planned. Others will try to impose their own arbitrary rules on you. Others will be jealous of your success and try to bring you down to the level…

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Focus On What You Need To Know

I lived in Seattle for a year before I went to my first professional sports game last summer. I’m not usually a big fan of watching sports, but it was fun to go down to Safeco Field and hang out with friends at the Mariners’ game. Getting to the game could have been difficult for…

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