Set Your Own Rules, Live the Life You Want and Change the World

Review Review Review Review Review 

Author : Chris Guillebeau

Overall, I loved this book and didn’t really know what to expect when I first picked it up, but the title and subtitles caught my eye.  The book reinforces  many of the believes I’ve always had and Guillebeau’s introductions and thoughts on the subject were quickly reinforcing my own beliefs on the subjects of doing whatever you feel passionate about, regardless of influences or social peer pressure.  The book is separated into 3 sections:

  • The remarkable life
  • Reclaiming work
  • The power of convergence
Guillebeau starts by introducing non-conformist thinking for life.  People who live the remarkable lives he promotes do so by facing their fears, following their dreams and doing things that may not seem to most to be in any way conventional.  Each of the stories he uses drive his points incredibly well and they inspire you with this new way of thinking.
The second section on reclaiming work is not about dropping your chosen career and restarting an online work, but instead to question how you work and what can be done differently with your work and commute to make the most of it.  Of course, it might lead to a career shift, but Guillebeau encourages you to seek freedom within the careers and lifestyles you are already living.  He encourages you to seek additional revenue streams and recurring revenue to increase your financial freedom.  This includes thinking differently about how you spend your money as well, how to stockpile ‘stuff’ and how you limit your experiences because of misconceptions about how much experiences really do cost.
The third section pushes you hard about the point of changing the world and that happiness comes from not what you do for yourself in life, but what you do for others.  What do you contribute to the world and does your life and work have meaning and purpose.  Many example stories are provided and Guillebeau share some of his own life stories to reflect many of these ideas of giving back to the world in some way.
One of the things I loved about the book is how real the author is about who the book is for.  At many points in the book, he literally encourages you to ask yourself if you want what he is talking about or not, and if not, to stop reading and not waste your time otherwise.  I agree, the book would obviously not be for everyone and for those that are willing to live a life by their own mechanisms despite whatever social influences exist, then this book will great inspire them be an enjoyable read with many valuable tips and guidance.  I found it to have some areas of overlap with “The Other 8 Hours” but covers a lot more about the thinking required for the non-conformity both authors write about.
So, I definitely encourage you to get a copy and read his book, or at the very least, visit his website to get a small sample of his articles and thinking at Chris Guillebeau’s blog.

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