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The Key to Productivity Isn’t More Rest, It’s Intentionality

It's tempting to think this is the answer. Just take it easy. It will come to you.

And sure, maybe it will.

I just know that for me, there’s more to it than "work in the morning, sit around and think in the afternoon." That’s how it’s always, always been.

The answer isn’t only “work hard all the time,” because of course you can work hard all the time on the wrong things. But I don’t think the answer is to coast either.

It’s more like: find the right thing, then give it all you’ve got. A two-step plan, essentially.

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Be Careful of Telling Your Origins Story Over and Over

The time came for the interview and I logged into Skype with my headset. After a few minutes of small talk, the host pressed the record button and began with the usual question: “Tell our listeners a little about you… how did you get started?”

It’s a fair question. The only problem is that I’ve answered it over and over—and over and over. Whenever I have a book out, I do at least 50 podcast interviews and usually another 50 radio interviews. At least 30% of the time, this is the first question that’s asked.

When you tell the same story over and over, two things happen. First, you get really good at telling it. You know what to say and how to say it. Second, because you hear the same question and give more-or-less the same answer each time, you rarely deviate from the course.

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The Reviews Are In! Attendee Blog Posts and Memories from WDS 2016 (Round 1)

Every year for six years, I’ve been part of a team that produces an annual gathering in Portland, Oregon. It’s a lot of work and a lot of fun. Rather than share my own recap, I usually prefer to let our attendees share their perspective. All of these posts are unfiltered and uncensored—take a look and learn more of what WDS is all about!

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Just Because It’s Supposed to Work Doesn’t Mean It Will

Dan finished his education degree without ever stepping into a classroom.

After he graduated, he realized he didn’t like teaching and wasn’t good at it. The very first day of student teaching, where the goal was to serve as an intern before accepting a full-time position, he knew that this was not the career for him.

You’re probably thinking: hey, that’s life! He just had to stick it out, and then he’d be fine. And it’s true, sometimes there’s a learning curve on the road of purpose. We’re supposed to challenge ourselves, and it takes time to gain real-world skills.

This was different, though. Dan really didn’t like teaching. It felt uncomfortable and unnatural. He knew he could probably soldier on through the internship, but he didn’t want to go any further.

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If Everyone Becomes a Non-Conformist, Won’t We All Be Conforming?

I used to get this question a lot, sometimes framed in skepticism but other times just curiosity. The simple answer is that not everyone wants to become a non-conformist, or any other particular means of self-identification. Plenty of people are happy with the way things are, which is the definition of conformity. It’s not always a bad thing.

It’s also like asking, what if everyone wanted world peace? It would be wonderful If everyone wanted world peace, but not everyone does. People generally operate in their own interests, and some people benefit from conflict and strife. It’s no surprise that the world is full of constant conflict.

Being a non-conformist, or just a rebel in general, isn’t about fighting for the sake of fighting. Nor is it usually about rejecting an orthodoxy or culture. When it is about those things, the rebellion is usually superficial and short-lasting.

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Lessons in Non-Conformity from Sesame Street

A reader sent me this fun video from a long-ago sketch on Sesame Street.

I love the turning point right at the halfway mark: Dan would do everything that Stan did, until one day he decides to make a change.

“Hi, I’m Dan. I decided I’m not going to do everything that Stan does anymore."

Isn’t this exactly how it works in life? You go along with the crowd, playing follow the leader and keeping your head down. The status quo is maintained—until it isn't.

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Tomorrow’s the Last Day for Online Business Training (+ Free Bonuses & Year-Long Support)

9389852584_cd001db345_z Link: 8 Weeks of Online Business Training

Bonuses: Get Naming Rights to My Firstborn A Ton of Great Bonuses When You Sign Up

(Note: You’ll automatically receive the bonuses when signing up at the above link. There’s no need to do anything else.)

Hey everyone,

Just a heads-up that tomorrow is the final day to register for Marie Forleo’s online business course. I’ve said a lot about it already, so this is just a quick notice and an important explanation about why I decided to promote the course.

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Don’t Join the Popularity Contest: Make It Happen Yourself

Many times a day, I hear from someone who asks for help promoting a cause. They have something they're working on and want to share it with me—totally fine. I generally like to help as many people as possible. Being helpful relates to feeling happy, at least for me, and it's also a nice thing to do. Some of these requests, however, come in the form of “vote for me and spread the word” pitches—and these I feel less comfortable with.

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The Virtue of Insecurity

“When I wake up in the morning, I feel like any other insecure 24-year-old girl. Then I say, ‘Bitch, you get up and walk the walk today.’” ―Lady Gaga One time I failed at something I’d worked at for a long time. I felt terrible and spent a week moping around, complaining about it. My…

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Visiting the Art Museum

A while back I was emailing with Julien, and one of his questions reminded me of a story I like to tell… “A lot of people probably relate to the idea of leaving behind their responsibilities and heading out to a new life, but they’re not in the situation where they just say “screw it”…

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