To take over the world, or whatever else you feel needs doing, you don’t need to be all that smart. So says Unconventional Man, Chris Guillebeau in his new book, The Art of Non-Conformity,
(No perpiration, can pass that one.)
What you need to be is determined, says Chris.
(Okay there, too. Can be surpassed on chasing my new life only by Wynnie chasing a mouse!)
Why you gotta be determined, even immovable about this: “we live in a conventional world and doing what you want can be surprisingly difficult “. In short, “you had better be prepared to work for the life you want to create while making the world a better place at the same time”.
(Work, assumed. Better world– happy to do my small part.)
I first heard of this amazing young man, influenced by 9/11 to strongly consider the life he wants to lead on terms personally meaningful to him, through the online newsletter of Barbara Winter, author of Making a Living Without a Job.
She was running on ideas for small businesses you could start up for less than $100, and I saw an idea from Chris. Jumping on it, I wrote to him. He promptly wrote back, which made me like him right off.
His idea was buying and selling things online, through eBay, for example. I have since learned that’s how he started working for himself, originally selling off things in his apartment, then realizing he was making an hourly wage greater than his $7/hour job. I asked how to learn, and he referred me to respected internet marketer Jim Cockrum.
That was close to two years ago. I took his advice and got on Jim Cockrum’s mailing list and membership site. And I continued to follow Chris’s own newsletter and website–www.chrisguillebeau.com
For someone who has worked at too many conventional jobs around too many conventional people, it makes me literally jump for joy to come across someone with the message: What excites you? What bothers you about the world? What can you do about that? Instead of settling in to pay for a mortgage and two-car garage while he works up to middle and top management, then to put his (future) kids through college, this expert in changing the way we see life hits the road. His goal is to see every country there is, as well as encourage as many of us like-minded folks as he can from lessons he has learned.
So it was amazing to actually meet up with Chris in person last week, as he passed through Nova Scotia on his “unconventional book tour”. When his publisher told him “we don’t do book tours”, he decided that attitude didn’t work and created his own.
His central message is “be one of the monkeys who actually grabs the bananas” as opposed to all the ones who don’t even try. In person he is exactly like he sounds online.
My graduate student friend, Catherine, alerted me from the west coast over Christmas about the Halifax stop.
She caught me here quizzing Chris on something profound (the pronunciation of his last name, which he says is “Gwill-a-bo”).
I now feel much more informed on world domination, and think I will add it to my to-do list for this year. It’s for sure that it’s within my capacity.
(Thankfully the year is still young.)