Personal Development

What does it mean to be a Good Human?

If you are reading this blog post, I think it’s safe to say that you are from a wealthy country and are probably looking to find more meaning and fulfillment in life. Finding purpose and a way to contribute to the world has certainly become the predominant focus of my life. The problem is that I still don’t know what that really means.

What are we trying to maximize?

Imagine that life were a quest to be the best we could be. What would we be trying to maximize?

Despite our actions, I would say that we are not trying to maximize such factors as:

  • number of hours of television watched
  • hour spent behind a desk in a cubicle
  • number of Tweets or Facebook updates
  • how fat we can get
  • total trash produced
  • volume of fossil fuels consumed
  • the size of our house
  • the speed of our cars
  • the number of stamps in our passports
  • the number of marathons we run

Those kinds of metrics seem somewhat foolish to mention as ultimate goals of being a good human, yet those types of activities end up taking a massive amount of our attention. Why is that?

What are Good Factors to

Hacking Higher Education – Interview with Jay Cross of

In this age of low cost business startups and endless entrepreneurial opportunities, is a university degree still a worthwhile investment? In the past, there was no question that higher education was the key to better salaries and upward mobility. However, with total university costs approaching $100,000 or more for ivy league private schools, does it still make sense to make that investment?

What if you could get that same education for a fraction of the cost? Jay Cross of can show you how. Jay explains how do it yourself university education works and gives some background into his last 6 years of location independence in this interview.

Jay Cross

Please tell us about yourself?

I’m a 26 year old digital nomad from the quiet beach town of Stratford, CT. In my brief yet adventurous career, I’ve dropped out of high school, made the front page of (“Students Toil as Spyware Hunters”), started a six-figure startup with my best friends, written for some of the top brands online, lived in three states, and founded my current project, The Do-It-Yourself Degree. I graduated from Excelsior College in 2011 with a bachelor’s degree in general business.

When I’m not working, I love …

Can you Recognize World Class Talent? Do you Care?

Is great art only found in art galleries? Are musicians only brilliant if we see them in expensive concert halls? Can we only appreciate Olympic class athletes at world class athletic events? Do we have to see great talent in a particular setting or location in order to recognize that just how amazing that person’s skills are?

Undiscovered Thai Guitar VirtuosoIn a previous post I wrote about an amazing guitarist I stumbled upon in a grungy bar in Thailand. I saw him play for two nights and managed to record about 15 minutes of his guitar solos. You might not like guitar or the style of music he plays, but I think his video is worth watching. This particular guitarist has put in thousands and thousands of hours of practice to master his art. That deserves some respect and admiration.



Before you watch the video, please read these excerpts from a Washington Post experiment with one of the best concert musicians in the world.

The Busker with the $3.5 Million Dollar Violin

The Washington Post arranged for concert violinist Joshua Bell to play his multi-million dollar violin in a Washington, D.C. subway at morning rush hour “as a test of whether, …

The Secret to Finding Your Passion

Papa Roach Concert in Amsterdam

The Secret to Finding Your Passion

Most of us are searching for a life calling that is financially, spiritually, and emotionally rewarding. Wouldn’t it be great to get paid to do what you love? Imagine being excited to get started on Monday morning, rather than dreading the start of another soul killing week. Here is the solution, but first we need some background information.

The Problem with Passion

There are some problems with the popular views of finding your passion, that likely get in the way of finding an occupation you truly enjoy:

1. Not every passion will earn you a great salary.

You might have a passion for watching movies, reading, eating potato chips, shopping, or even drinking coffee. While it is not impossible to earn an income doing those things, it is unlikely. You might be able to find related work, but it definitely won’t be doing the enjoyable part of those activities all day long.

 2. Passion is not enough.

Really enjoying an activity is not enough. For example, you may have a passion for playing guitar, but that doesn’t mean you will automatically become a rock star. You also need the image, charisma, distribution, marketing …

Inspiring TEDx Video of Neil Pasricha from

Neil Pasricha of 1000 Awesome Things

Neil Pasricha of 1000 Awesome Things gave a funny and motivational talk at TEDx in Toronto last fall. He talks about how he started his blog, his book deal and how many amazing things there are in the world to be thankful for.

It is a great presentation and message but I also love how simple his idea was for his blog. The simplest ideas are often the most well received. I talked about big ideas like this in previous posts: Get Rich Quick: Big Ideas for Big Money! and Big Ideas to Make Big Money. The problem is that simple can actually be quite difficult because people tend to be overly critical and dismiss the ideas too early.

It is very hard to do what everyone else is doing and succeed, a simple, yet novel idea is the only way.

Social Media is Not about Technology

My Friends

My Friends

Technology doesn’t change social relationships, it is just a different way to connect with people. People who have many real world friends likely spend a lot of time cultivating those relationships and put themselves in situations to meet and interact with new people.

It is easy to add “friends” to the social media sites you subscribe to but there are different levels of friendship. Thousands of online friends may be a great way to keep score and impress people but they are much more distant acquain-tances than real friends. You don’t mind asking the friends you meet every weekend to help paint your house, but you are unlikely to call your old co-worker from 10 years ago to come and lend a hand.

The same is true for online friends and relationships. Close friends can be called upon for favors, assistance and advice but not before there is a history of mutual sharing and benefit. Asking some stranger online to buy your offering or subscribe to your blog on the first contact is akin to asking a stranger on the street to come and help you paint your house this weekend. The internet is not so different to …