Tag Archives: Excellence

Interview with Philanthropists, Bernie and Dani of Border Jumpers

Long-term travel is a life-changing experience. It is exciting to meet new people, experience new cultures and completely broaden your horizons. Most of us travel for our own personal satisfaction and growth, however there are many people, living and traveling abroad, dedicating their lives to make the world a better place. Such selfless devotion truly is amazing. Bernard Pollack and Danielle Nierenberg are two of those people striving to make a difference in the world. They took some time out of their African endeavors to answer some questions here.

Zimbabwe- HIV:AIDS Orphanage Project Visit with the Zimbabwe Chamber of Informal Associations in Harare

Zimbabwe- HIV:AIDS Orphanage Project Visit with the Zimbabwe Chamber of Informal Associations in Harare

Please tell us  a little about your backgrounds.

B: Danielle currently serves as Co-Project Director of State of World 2011 for the Worldwatch Institute , a Washington, DC-based environmental research organization. Her background is in sustainable agriculture; impacts of meat, egg, and dairy production on the environment, primarily climate change; animal welfare, and farmers; greenhouse gas emissions and the food system; biofuels; urban agriculture; and food safety.  She also worked for two years as a Peace Corps volunteer in the Dominican Republic and volunteers at farmers’ markets, the Earth Sangha (an urban reforestation organization), and 1Well (an …

Interview with Media Sensation, Sean Aiken of OneWeekJob.com

Sean Aiken's One Week Job

Sean Aiken’s One Week Job


Sean Aiken of OneWeekJob.com, uncertain about what career choice to make after graduating university, decided to take job hopping to the extreme by trying 52 one week jobs. He has since managed to parlay the first website outlining his intentions into a book deal, speaking engagements, a documentary and an on-going project helping recent graduates try different jobs. Those of you reading my IdeaEconomy.net blog will likely know that I love a great idea; by that measure Sean Aiken is pure brilliance! He has proved that a good idea, talent and hard work can accomplish amazing things. Sean offers some background details about his success with the project in this interview.

How did ‘One Week Job’ get started?

When I was looking for a job, I saw all of these important sounding job titles but I had no idea what the job would actually be like. I was scared at the thought of committing to one, not liking it, and then feeling trapped in the position. In my last year at Capilano University, my dad gave me some advice on finding a career, he said, “Sean, it doesn’t matter what you do, just …

What Does it Take to Make You Happy?

Corbett Barr at FreePursuits.com recently posted  a fantastic video that is closely aligned with my personal life view. The TED video is of Srikumar Rao who outlines how to be happy in life. I briefly summarized the video below, but I didn’t include the great examples that will help convey the message. Watch the video, it is worth it.

Brief Summary

Srikumar Rao

Everything we do in life in someway is a quest for happiness.

There is nothing that you have to get, do or be in order to be happy.

Happiness is your innate nature. It is wired in your DNA.

We have a mental model that says we have to get something in order to be happy.

IF this happens, THEN we will be happy.

The IF-THEN model itself is flawed. But instead of realizing that, we spend an enormous amount of time changing the ‘IFs.”

Recall a scene of spectacular beauty that took you outside of yourself into a place of great serenity like a rainbow or mountain range. The reason that happened is that you accepted the universe exactly as it was. You didn’t say that is a beautiful rainbow but it is a little off

The End of Lifestyle Design – Long Live Lifestyle Design

Lifestyle Design is Dead - Long Live Lifestyle Design!

Lifestyle Design is Dead - Long Live Lifestyle Design!

Corbett Barr of FreePursuits.com asked a brilliant question in a recent post: “Is lifestyle design dead already?” There is still a fantastic discussion brewing there that I highly recommend for anyone interested in the subject. The fact that so many people are discussing the topic indicates that the moniker ‘lifestyle design’ is growing old despite the fact that designing your own lifestyle is getting easier with more opportunities than ever.

There seems to be at couple of immediate assumptions with ‘lifestyle design.’ The first is that all work is some indentured servitude. Employees are all ’slaves’ sacrificing themselves to someone else’s benefit. The second is that self-employment is some sort of utopia where you bring in wheel-barrels of cash while having the freedom to do whatever you want.

If you don’t like your job, just quit

I have been self-employed for most of my life, but I know that I was never a slave to the short-term jobs I had in the past. My employers provided me with a wage I deemed fair in exchange for work. Both sides found value in the proposition. When I no longer received enough value …

Get Ready for an Untemplated Lifestyle!

UntemplaterThe last couple of decades have seen a profound shift in western ideas  and values of work, life and play. The rules have changed to the point where there are no longer any rules. In fact, we all have the opportunity to create our own rules if we so chose. There are no templates or life paths to follow. The world has become untemplated.

A great group of people have joined forces to blog about the opportunities to create any lifestyle we imagine.

They have just launched a new site, Untemplater.com and have a free PDF manifesto on offer. I am really excited about this new online community because I really think we are on the cusp of a major revolution in all facets of our lives. Old templates and career paths just don’t work anymore. Untemplater promises to help us chart our way through entrepreneurship, lifestyle design, vagabond travels, personal finance, motivation and the future of the anywhere, anything lifestyle.

The world is changing fast but it is always helpful to reflect on the history that brought us here.

A Century of Change: ‘You Ain’t

Volunteer Global, Interview with Sarah Van Auken

Volunteering Abroad, Interview with Sarah Van Auken

Volunteering Global, Interview with Sarah Van Auken

International volunteer opportunities can be a fantastic way to see another part of the world and make a difference in communities that need it.  The problem is finding the right cause to volunteer for. Volunteer expert Sarah Van Auken offers some great advice in this interview.

Please tell us a about your website, Volunteering Global

Volunteering Global is a site that educates individuals about service opportunities worldwide. There are two main parts – the list of volunteer programs and the blog. Currently, there are 420 individual service groups listed, with information on costs, accommodations, type of work, and other basics that people might want to know. The blog covers general travel and about volunteering, whether it involves safety tips, packing advice, stories from returned volunteers, or even highlights of specific service programs.

What volunteer experiences have you had?

Most of my volunteering has been U.S.-based, so I’ll highlight work that my friends and I have done as an example of the types of projects available worldwide:

  • Tracking and tagging nesting sea turtles in Costa Rica
    Repairing damaged trails throughout Appalachia
  • Researching small mammals in Mongolia
  • Helping with HIV/AIDS affected families in Kenya

Review of the fantastic book, Juggle: Rethink Work, Reclaim Your Life

Juggle: Rethink Work, Reclaim Your Life by Ian Sanders

Juggle: Rethink Work, Reclaim Your Life by Ian Sanders

I have recently had the opportunity to read an inspiring book on lifestyle design and the future of work called, Juggle: Rethink Work, Reclaim Your Life. Author Ian Sanders has some great ideas about the some of the biggest career and lifestyle design issues we are all facing. The book is loaded practical examples about how to live a “portfolio lifestyle” including quotes and interviews with Gary Vaynerchuk and Saatchi & Saatchi CEO, Kevin Roberts.

“You can choose to become a Juggler, to throw the rules out of the window, to create a life where you mix stuff you do for love and stuff you do for money. A life where you re-define success not by a salary package alone buy by freedom, enjoyment, flexibility and lifestyle. Where work is an extension of You, reflecting your personality, your talents and desires; where you juggle different projects to be stimulated as well as to earn a living.”

Think PassionS NOT Passion

Many of us are looking for our true calling in life. If only we could find that one thing that we are so excited about, work would be become joy. …

How to Make Any Work More Enjoyable

You think your job is bad? These guys were laying asphalt in 35 degrees Celsius!

You think your job is bad? These guys were laying asphalt in 35 degrees Celsius!

Most of us hate our jobs. We hate dealing with irate customers, inept bosses, lazy co-workers and work that is mind-numbingly tedious. Work sucks so we fantasize about magical places where we can do whatever we want and make wheel-barrel loads of money, maybe even get our picture on the cover of a magazine somewhere. That is the life the life of the entrepreneur. Digital nomads or location independent professionals have it even better. They get to travel to exotic locations around the world while earning a great income from anywhere with an Internet connection. Ah… the good life indeed!

Is the Grass Really that Green?

The problem is that starting your own business or working from another country still involve the very thing you are trying to escape: WORK. In fact, working for yourself generally has more responsibilities and requires more hours and effort than working for others.

I have been running my own businesses and living abroad for more than a decade, so I can definitely recommend both choices to anyone. However, I feel it is healthier to approach big lifestyle changes like …

Interview with Genius Marketer, Charlie Hoehn

Interview with Marketing Genius Charlie Hoehn

Interview with Marketing Genius Charlie Hoehn

At 23 years old, Charlie Hoehn has already managed to work with marketing God Seth Godin,  Ramit Sethi of Iwillteachyoutoberich.com, Tim Ferriss of The Four Hour Workweek phenomenon and is currently on tour with movie director Tucker Max. Charlie has also published the  brilliant free ebook, Recession Proof Graduate to wide spread notoriety. The message of the the book is pure genius in my mind because it is simple yet innovative. Charlie masterly blends creative thinking with hard work to get exceptional results.

On the same page as the ebook, Sethi and Ferriss talk about Charlie’s initiative and talent that created those opportunities. If that endorsement isn’t good enough, check out what Seth Godin had to say. Clearly Charlie Hoehn is destined for great things. I am absolutely thrilled to have had the opportunity to interview him here.


Please tell us about your Seth Godin virtual internship.

The first thing he told each of us to do was start up our own personal blog. I did NOT want to do that at all, which is still funny to me, because my blog has opened up more doors than I …

What is a Great Lifestyle?

Whose Idea of the Perfect Lifestyle Design are you Following? (Image by Bobster855)

Whose Idea of the Perfect Lifestyle Design are you Following? (Image by Bobster855)

Everyone is searching or at least hoping for a great lifestyle, but what is a great life and where did we get the idea from?

The Perfect Lifestyle Design

If your idea of a perfect life is living on a private island with naked models rubbing coconut oil on your… body, while your outsourced staff handle all your work leaving you to manage those naked models, then we have the same dream. I mean, perhaps you have set your expectations a little high and you are bound for a lot of disappointment regardless of how much you accomplish in life.

The Perfect Spouse

In an advertising dominated world of impossibly beautiful celebrities, read that as Photoshopped, it is easy to set completely unrealistic expectations for what we expect from life. If you are waiting for a spouse that is always happy, never complains, loves to go for long walks, listens to all of your problems and licks you all over, you may want to consider a companion of the canine persuasion. Ruff!

The Perfect Career

The same is true of a career. If you demand a high …