Book Review – The Art of Non Conformity

Book 1 of 50 in the Alternative Graduate Program – The Art of Non-Conformity by Chris Guillebeau

What does it have to do with becoming a Mogul?

This was a great book about becoming someone who is free to roam the world and not feel guilty about it. It challenged many of my thoughts about materialism and doing things the “right” way.  I currently live in San Diego and there is a lot of pressure to buy $100 jeans, $80,000 cars and live in a $1 million dollar house as a way to prove that you are someone or that you have “made it.” I know other places in the world are under this same type of pressure. And after reading this book I just felt free to love my Honda Fit that gets 38 miles to the gallon. I felt free to move into $1 million dollar multi-unit, where my husband, soon to be baby and I will share a 2/2 unit and have others pay for our mortgage. This will give me freedom to travel around, explore and be with my baby as it grows. Yes, I will be one of those mothers with the baby on a plane. That for me is “Making it.” Or becoming a Mogul.

What did I learn from it?

I learned that being an entrepreneur is less risky than having a full time job. And throughout our life we are trained to believe that security is created through clocking in and out and having someone tell you what to do. After reading this book I believe being an entrepreneur will give me more stability than any other job ever will. By the time most people are 25 they are thousands to hundreds of thousands in debt. Their only option is to work to pay it off and it seems like the best way to do that is to have someone say, “I will pay you $50,000 a year to do this job.” And that seems like the best way to get out of the debt, and then they say, “I will pay you $75,000 a year to do this job” and you think, “Well maybe its time to get a new car.” Then you have more debt. And then you need new clothes for the new job and maybe even a new house. And it goes on and on until you are 50 and praying for retirement.

I have set up life to not have debt. My husband and I have very little; no credit card debt, one car paid off, the other on it’s way and the only kind of property I will buy is property that is going to produce income. Period.

Should others read it?

You should only read it if you are willing to open your mind and really give up that your $150 sunglasses or $50,000 car is not a dream worth living for. And he doesn’t say you can’t want things like that. You totally can. But he really emphasizes the point that life is about living your purpose, not buying your purpose.
He also talks about the difference between a good business and bad business, the main points are that a good business provides regular cash flow, no time trading, and is location independent. All of these things are what I am personally looking for in a business, but again I don’t think that everyone is.

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