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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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One Log Cabin and 800 Yoga Mats: Some Unconventional Tax Deductions from My Life in 2014


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My tax return is complicated for a lot of reasons. First, I run several different businesses which all have their own set of accounting. WDS, our annual gathering, has its own legal structure, including a foundation that is completely separate from all my other projects. Last year we started an all-new event that also has its own legal structure.

So yeah, it’s complicated. It takes about 20 hours just to prepare all the info for my accountant, and as with most tax-prep tasks, it’s not usually a fun process. But I do enjoy seeing some of the charges on my statements from the previous year. They remind me of the crazy life I have, and the many fun experiences that I'm fortunate to participate in.

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Immerse Yourself in What You Want to Become

38563077_a0e8fc4065_z In reading the transcript of Bob Dylan’s speech at MusiCares, I also liked this part on the origins of his songwriting:

“There's nothing secret about it. You just do it subliminally and unconsciously, because that's all enough, and that's all I sang. That was all that was dear to me. They were the only kinds of songs that made sense.

I learned lyrics and how to write them from listening to folk songs. And I played them, and I met other people that played them back when nobody was doing it. Sang nothing but these folk songs, and they gave me the code for everything that's fair game, that everything belongs to everyone.

For three or four years all I listened to were folk standards. I went to sleep singing folk songs. I sang them everywhere, clubs, parties, bars, coffeehouses, fields, festivals. And I met other singers along the way who did the same thing and we just learned songs from each other. I could learn one song and sing it next in an hour if I'd heard it just once."

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Stop Marketing to “Millennials” or Any Other Generation

SocialMedia From time to time people ask my advice about marketing to Generation X or Millennials or any other group of people. When this happens, I always worry.

One research firm offered me $250 for an hour-long consultation on this exact topic. I said no, partly because I don’t like to trade time for money, but also on the principle of “What would I say?”

If forced to say something, I suppose I’d say that unless you’re selling diapers, it’s a bad idea to market to people based on what generation you think they belong to on account of their birth year.

Instead, maybe you should think first about making something that matters. Then, stop putting people in boxes based on how you expect them to behave and what you think they want. You might be surprised at the results, and you might be a lot more successful.

Cartoon: Tom Fishburne

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How to Run a Business and Still Care for Your Family


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I met a guy who was a busy executive at a startup in Silicon Valley. His family, a wife and three young kids, lived several states away. He lived in a hotel during the week, worked every evening, and flew home every weekend before returning to the office on Monday morning. Not a very dedicated family guy, right?

On the contrary. When I asked him about living in two cities, he admitted it was sometimes a challenge. But then he talked about what the weekends were like. “We do everything together,” he said. “We go camping. We bake and cook. We play hard the whole weekend long. I know I have to go back on Monday, so I'm constantly thinking about how to squeeze as much time and as many experiences in as we can.”

His family had discussed the arrangement of him being away mid-week, and they re-evaluated it twice a year. So far, at least, it was working.

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The Light Outside My Window on the Morning After Launch


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Some past reflections and enduring lessons learned during the launch process:

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This morning I woke up at 7:20am, and it felt so late. There was a touch of light outside—what was that? Oh right, sunrise.

For the past few mornings I’ve been getting up at the entirely unreasonable hour of 5:30am or sometimes even earlier. My breakfast place opens at 6am and I’ve been at the front of the line shortly thereafter. The sun rose two hours after I’d been awake.

Two nights earlier, I went to bed with my laptop on the nightstand. Yep—it was another product launch week.

As I made another cup of coffee on the morning after having slept “so late,” I thought back on the launches over the years. How many have I done? I honestly don’t remember ...

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The Working Day in North Korea

What’s it like to live and work in one of the most mysterious countries in the world? A new book shines a spotlight on the working day in Pyongyang, North Korea. Here are a few of my favorite points, as reproduced by the Guardian:

Apartment life is a challenge.

"Those who live on higher floors may have to set out for work or school a little earlier than those lower down. Due to chronic power cuts, many elevators work only intermittently, if at all. Many buildings are between 20 and 40 storeys tall – there are stories of old people who have never been able to leave. Even in the better blocks elevators can be sporadic and so people just don't take the chance. Families make great efforts to relocate older relatives on lower floors, but this is difficult and a bribe is sometimes required."
9698785562_251663cc74_z Electricity requires coordination.

"Every day people liaise with their neighbors about the electricity situation. A large proportion of Pyongyang operates an 'alternative suspension of electricity supply' system, meaning that when buildings on one side of the street are blacked out, the other side of the street gets power. When the alternation time arrives there is a mad rush of children as they head for their friends' apartments across the road."

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Checking Your Bank Accounts Will Not Make More Money

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Seems obvious, right? We wouldn’t expect that driving past the gym will make us any healthier.

But when it comes to money, those of us who are self-employed tend to spend a lot of time on activities that do nothing to help the bottom line, either directly or indirectly.

I don’t just mean “administrative work,” because some administrative work has to be done even if it’s not particularly exciting. You still need to do customer service, update outdated info, and so on.

No, I mean the tendency we have to log-in just to see something. I’ll just check one more time... says the addict.

So here’s an idea: the next time you feel like checking website stats or bank account numbers, hold off a moment. First, do something that matters. Do something that will actually increase or improve whatever metrics you’re tracking. Then, go ahead and check them—because that’s human nature. But make yourself work for it first. Make yourself earn it.

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Re: “Let’s talk when you’re free”

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Productive people are never "free." They don’t have 15 minutes on their lunch break to "have a quick call."

They don’t "kill time"—a terrible phrase. You can always put a window of time to good use if you work for it.

Productive people schedule their priorities—not always their time, but always their priorities. When they don’t have something to do, they find something to do.

By the way, it’s not that productive people don’t make time for friends, family, recovery, and play time. They do. But because they do, and because they have plenty of other things to consider... they’re rarely "free."

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How Valuable Were Your Last 40 Minutes?

Q: What are your tricks for time management? “The simple answer is to attempt to avoid, at all costs, situations that waste people’s time.” “Regarding my personal time management, I also try to live by the philosophy that focuses on: ‘What did I do that was productive and beneficial in the last 40 minutes?’ I…

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Service Is Free to Offer But Incredibly Valuable: Lessons from an Airport Shuttle Driver

At the Hyatt Dulles, my shuttle driver was named Abdullai. He was extremely enthusiastic about welcoming his early-morning travelers on board for the ride to the terminal. “Ladies and gentlemen,” he said, “Welcome to my shuttle. I’ll be taking you to the Dulles airport this morning. The journey will take exactly 13 minutes.” Then he…

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