Book Review: Use Your Job to Quit Your Job

 

This is a very neat book, and I’m extremely grateful that it didn’t exist 10 years ago when I decided to start a side hustle.

Why? With the help of Use Your Job to Quit Your Job, I would have probably succeeded with some IT-related enterprise, because I had worked in IT back then. However, I SO much prefer being a writer and business coach 😛

As Jake Lang, the author of the book, said:

The process outlined in this chapter is nearly foolproof; it has worked for me and my eight businesses, and it has worked for thousands of other entrepreneurs who have gone through the process(…)”

He meant in that fragment the process of estimating a baseline market size, but it applies to the whole Jake’s framework. It works. It bears the proof of practice – it worked for thousands. It is nearly foolproof.
Continue reading

Book Review: Before You Begin


Jacob Coldwell is quickly becoming my new favorite author. I was delighted with his book, Listen Simply. I was even more impacted by Before You Begin.

The only CON I found in this book (and Listen Simply shares this affliction) is the speaker’s framework it sticks to:

Tell them what you’re going to tell them, tell them, and tell them what you’ve told them.”

I don’t mind summarizing the message in points. In fact, it helps me to retain whatever I read and learned. However, I passionately dislike (bordering hate) a preamble to the message: “In this book or chapter, I’ll tell you…” Sheesh, just tell me the message! Don’t waste my time! And don’t spoil the fun!

Each and every one of those introductions fell flat on me, and the message itself was delivered in so much more an impactful and better way. Eliminating those sections would’ve shortened the book by about 20% and made the reading experience 100% better for me.
Continue reading

Book Review: The Happy Minimalist

 

I really liked this small book. It has the best qualities of a self-published book – personal stories and relatable experiences, plus no beating around the bush or beating the dead horse. I read the whole book in about an hour and can move forward with my life.

However, it wasn’t perfect, so – as usual – I will start with some

CONS

1. Editing.

I found a few typos in the book, and English is not even my first language. Also, I can sense one type of editing (developmental? line-editing? I always confuse them) is done poorly or completely missing – the one, which removes redundancies and excessive language ornamentals. I mean, how many times can you read about how many shirts Marc has and how many he got rid of?

The answer, when it comes to “The Happy Minimalist” is “too many.” :/
Continue reading

Book Review: Listen Simply

 

I’ll start this review from a story from my coaching training. One fellow was repeatedly frustrated by the simplicity of the whole coaching process. He said multiple times: “If people just kept talking with each other, this whole ‘coaching thing’ would have been unnecessary!”

He was almost right. If people kept talking with each other – and listened simply – coaches would have become unemployed. Just keeping the communication lines open is not enough. True listening must happen as well.

Most people have never truly been heard.”

I would add: in this time and age. I’m old enough to remember the world without the Internet and smartphones. Then, we had the time, and willingness, to just be with each other and talk. Listen, discuss, ponder, reflect.

And what’s the point of talking, if you aren’t heard?! Then, it’s just a useless effort.
Continue reading

Book Review: Scaling Your Business with MOD Virtual Professionals

Scaling Your Business with MOD Virtual Professionals is a nice short book. Yes, it is also an infomercial, but it is a valuable book in itself. You don’t need to hire MyOutDesk to get the value of the content. The Sticky Challenge itself is easily worth the price of the book.

However, because it was written with pitching the business for MOD in mind, it has a couple of major …

CONS

1. Appealing to Everybody.

In the effort of gaining as big of a market share as possible, the author committed the main marketing sin and didn’t properly narrow down for whom this book is the best option. Small business owners is really an extremely broad category.

Continue reading

Book Review: 7 Attitudes of the Helping Heart

Normally, I wouldn’t even have opened such a book. When it comes to spiritual advice, I go to the books written by saints themselves.

But I ended up on a vacation without any other reading material to practice speed reading, so I read 7 Attitudes of the Helping Heart. And I was impressed.

I hadn’t had big expectations when starting this book, so it was easy to exceed them, and the author did exactly that. I cannot even name a single CON of 7 Attitudes of the Helping Heart because I didn’t read it with a critical mindset at all.

Continue reading

Coaching Magic

Photo by Laura Tancredi

Coaching is a very transformative experience. And it should be. Getting a certificate costs a small fortune and rightfully so. There is an incredible amount of knowledge and skills packed into the process.

So, usually you are paying a coach a hefty fee for their time. You expect the intended transformation: getting a promotion, changing your career path, getting ready for a new stage in life or getting un-stuck from something which plagued you for years.

Transformations in coaching are expected. However, I’m in awe of the “byproduct transformations” which I observed too often to be just an accident. More than a few times, my clients got some insight completely unrelated to their coaching goal, and the simple expansion of their self-awareness was enough to get rid of some serious stuff. A couple of examples:

Social Anxiety

Continue reading

Book Review: Catch the Unicorn

Book Cover Design by Booksmith Designs

I loved everything about this small book (164 pages): zero beating around the bush, sound business and craft advice, excellent mindset insights, and the price, of course. Catch the Unicorn is permanently free on Kindle.

As the author of 19 nonfiction books, I am in a good position to verify most of the book’s content just with my experience. And I tell you, the content is aligned with my experience in at least 95%. The rest? Well, the subtitle says “for fiction,” so maybe slightly different rules apply in that realm.

Let’s go over all the PROS:

Continue reading

Quitters Never Win

Photo by Nicola Barts from Pexels

Shawn Achor, in his book Big Potential (which is one of my favorite books) tells the story of taking part in the study as a guinea pig.

He was informed that the study’s objective was to learn how the elderly fall. And that he will get a $20-dollar stipend for participating. So, for the next three hours he was going over and over again through the pitch-black corridor filled with traps, and he repeatedly fall. He wanted to quit badly, but he wanted his $20 even more.

However, he was tricked. The study wasn’t about elderly’s falls, it was about resilience in relationship to economic gains. He was the only one who persisted the full three hours. Oh, and he could have quit at any moment and still get his $20. Shawn Achor summarized this story in those words:

Quitters sometimes DO win. Defense, resilience, and grit are valuable, but only to a point.”

Why I’m telling you this story? To demonstrate how outlandish and artificial circumstances and stories need to be invented to make the above sentences right.

Think of it for a moment: where in the real life (not during the fake study with false assumptions) quitting is ever rewarded?

Quit your job, quit your relationship, quit your school, quit the competition, and what you will gain?

Nothing. Always nothing.

The best you can count on are benefits coming from alternative costs. You might have gained a better job, relationship, or education. But quitting alone doesn’t guarantee nor provide any of those benefits. You have to first invest in the new job, relationship, school or sport. Even if you “win” the cost will be higher — because the time and resources spent on both endeavors (job, relationship, etc.) will compound into a single reward.
Continue reading

Live Like No One Else

Photo by Ady April from Pexels

If you will live like no one else, later you can live like no one else.”
― Dave Ramsey

November 2011

I lived like everybody else. I woke up at 5:30 am to get on a train at 6:10 am, so I could be on time at work. Walking to the train station, I prayed I could stay at home with my family. I plugged through the workday without much interest, wishing I’d have been somewhere else. On a train back home, I usually napped fighting off the sleep deficit.

I spent a few precious hours living my life, taking care of household chores, and playing with my kids. I stole a couple hours from my sleep reading or playing computer games.

I had a life of an average Joe, living from paycheck to paycheck. Saving a few percent of my salary was a constant battle. I never tried to explore the life outside my small social bubble. My health was OK-ish; other than an infection about twice a year and murderous allergy during a pollen season, I was fine.
Continue reading