treadmill

You Are Not ‘Behind’

Have you ever felt like you were behind? I used to feel that way. I would read articles about a 26-year-old entrepreneur with a billion-dollar company or a 16-year-old kid who invented a new kind of fusion reactor and a slow creep of panic would start to rise in my chest. I would read about my favorite author who published their first book at 27 and I was already 25 and I had not even written one page and I started counting backwards to figure out of it was even possible to finish a book by then and I can’t
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A005_C008_1221PL

Down to Earth: SpaceX and the Return of Limitless Ambition

I have been thinking about the SpaceX launch since I watched it last night – and, of course, the subsequent landing – feeling inspired and excited in a way that I cannot ever recall feeling before. The last launch I watched was back in June, when the Falcon 9 was due to deliver a much-needed payload with resupplies to the International Space Station. I was shocked when the rocket exploded shortly after launch. It was a heartbreaking sight – seldom do we witness a failure so spectacular, so public. And as the video feed started, this time live from SpaceX
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Mountain in Peru

What I’ve Learned About Love

I think we all are looking for one true love, a partner in crime, someone to share our secret world. Love is complicated, though, and it is hard to know what to look for in another person. When I was younger, I came up with a list of ‘non-negotiables’ – ten attributes that I wanted to find in a person like ‘moral,’ ‘communicative,’ and ‘lifelong learner.’ At the end of a relationship, I would reflect on my list and change it based on what worked and what didn’t. I found myself frustrated that my list of qualities didn’t seem to be a
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Oculus Rift

People Will Spend the Majority of Waking Time in Virtual Reality by 2020 (and, how to predict the future)

I find it interesting that predictions about the near-term future tend to be very conservative – most people envision the future looking like a mildly-enhanced version of the present. It is easy to imagine that most of the major societal transformations have either already taken place or will occur in the distant future, but this is far from the truth. The world is changing faster today than ever before, and a number of technologies emerging over the next few years – namely, autonomous cars and the subject of this post, virtual reality – will render the world nearly unrecognizable from
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Autonomous Google Uber Car

How Uber’s Autonomous Cars Will Destroy 10 Million Jobs and Reshape the Economy by 2025

I have spent quite a bit of time lately thinking about autonomous cars, and I wanted to summarize my current thoughts and predictions. Most people – experts included – seem to think that the transition to driverless vehicles will come slowly over the coming few decades, and that large hurdles exist for widespread adoption. I believe that this is significant underestimation. Autonomous cars will be commonplace by 2025 and have a near monopoly by 2030, and the sweeping change they bring will eclipse every other innovation our society has experienced. They will cause unprecedented job loss and a fundamental restructuring
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Beach view from Fripp Island

Projects, Process, and the Deep Cleanse

I heard a story once about a mechanic. Calloused and worn, his tired hands were stained deep with grease and grime that told the story of his hard work. Though the water would run black when he rinsed his hands, the gritty industrial cleaner in his shop bathroom removed just the surface dirt and made little difference to their appearance. He took vacation once per year and it was always the same. His parents had left him and his sister a small cottage by the sea – it was a single room, the kitchen not more than a lone burner
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Instead of wondering when your next vacation is, maybe you should set up a life you don't need to escape from.

Are you stressed?

Take a bath. If you don’t have a bath, take a shower. My brother says to never make a big decision before you take a shower. You may not be on the verge of making a decision, but water has a magical way of clearing your head. When you’re toweled off, take a look at what you are doing when you are away from your stressor. Stress drains you emotionally. It drains your soul, in a way. Are you doing things that are filling you back up? Or are you doing things that deplete you further?
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When I Grow Up

I have been thinking a lot about a conversation I had with a friend recently – moreover, though, how I can’t help but feel that I have had this same conversation with dozens of people, and that I often wonder how many times a day this same conversation takes place. It takes many forms, but, at its core, the message is always the same. ‘I don’t know what I want to be when I grow up.’ And though this dilemma carries with it a connotation of youth, I find that many of the people trapped within it are, ironically, not
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“It is a pretty recognizable brand name. Originally it was ‘Jerry's Guide to the World Wide Web’ but we settled on ‘Yahoo.’” -Jerry Yang, Yahoo founder

How to Name Your Startup

It is no secret at this point that I love being an entrepreneur, and it’s a profession that I would recommend to virtually anyone. At the first mention of job-related trouble, the de facto advice I’ll dispense is to quit your job: burn the bridge behind you and don’t look back. I’ve given away more copies of The 4-Hour Workweek than I can count. I am often asked, “what is the hardest part of starting a business?” Like most things in life, the process of starting a business seems impossibly complex until you actually begin to undertake it – what appears from afar
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