Chris Guillebeau

This week on Life on Purpose, we celebrate a momentous occasion: my five-year podcast anniversary — including 56 Life on Purpose episodes and nearly 200 hour-long conversations overall!

To help commemorate my journey, I’m joined by the man whose work and community inspired me to start my first podcast (Radio Enso) back in the summer of 2011: author and world-changer Chris Guillebeau from The Art of Non-Conformity.

Chris joined me for a wide-ranging, inspirational, and personal conversation, which included:

  • The common thread that runs through all of his work: “There’s more than one way to live your life. There’s more than one way to make a living.”
  • Making intentional choices in your life. “It all begins with the deliberate choice to think differently”
  • “Most people who have their dream job or feel like they’ve won the career lottery have not followed a linear path. They’ve actually done a lot of different stuff. And they didn’t necessarily know from a young age, “Oh, here’s my life purpose.”
  • How at age six, he wanted to both be an astronaut AND work at Burger King!
  • The importance of the question, “How can I use my power for good?”
  • Fostering empowerment by providing role models: “People are already motivated and inspired to a degree. What they lack, I believe, is ‘What is the path? What is the next step?'”
  • “Essentially what we’re trying to do is empowerment. We’re trying to help people make money and have the opportunity to do something different with their lives.”
  • Overcoming a rough childhood, juvenile delinquency, and depression as a teen before learning to support himself and start his first business at age 19.
  • The changes and challenges he’s faced since our previous conversation on my show in 2012 including the tragic loss of his brother last year.
  • Honoring his brother by bringing more kindness into his life. “At the end of every day, ask yourself, ‘Did today matter? Did I invest in relationships that are important to me?'”
  • WDS: the annual gathering of world-changers that he hosts each summer in Portland (I attended the first four), how it’s evolved, and where it’s going.
  • The topic of privilege: “I think anything we can do to increase people’s opportunities so that they can then make their own choices is good. So it’s not so much about, ‘Here is a handout. Here’s us making your life better. But what I learned from working in Africa is that most people want to be able to make decisions.”
  • How do you live a remarkable life in a conventional world, the guiding question of WDS: “I guess for me it’s about asking why. Why do we do the things that we do? What are our intentions and because we have so much privilege and opportunity, great, what are we going to do with it? How are we going to express that. And it does come back to contribution and pursuing those big dreams.”
  • MUCH, MUCH more!

About Chris Guillebeau:

Chris Guillebeau is a New York Times bestselling author and modern-day explorer. During a lifetime of self-employment that included a four-year commitment as a volunteer executive in West Africa, he visited every country in the world (193 in total) before his 35th birthday.

Since then he has modeled the proven definition of an entrepreneur: “Someone who will work 24 hours a day for themselves to avoid working one hour a day for someone else.”

His first book, The Art of Non-Conformity, was translated into more than twenty languages. His second book, The $100 Startup, was a New York Times and Wall Street Journal bestseller, selling more than 300,000 copies worldwide.

That was followed by The Happiness of Pursuit — published in September 2014 and also a New York Times bestseller.

And in his latest book Born for This: How to Find the Work You Were Meant to Do, he’s created a practical guide for how to find the perfect job — whether within a traditional company or business, or by striking out on your own.

Plus every summer in Portland, Oregon, Chris hosts the World Domination Summit, a gathering of creative, remarkable people with thousands in attendance. He’s also the founder of Pioneer Nation, Unconventional Guides, the Travel Hacking Cartel, and numerous other projects.

To learn more about Chris and his work, visit:

Born For ThisAbout Born for This:

Have you ever met someone with the perfect job?

To the outside observer, it seems like they’ve won the career lottery—that by some stroke of luck or circumstance, they’ve found the one thing they love so much that it doesn’t even feel like work, and they’re getting paid well to do it. In reality, their good fortune has little to do with chance.

There’s a method for finding your perfect job, and Chris Guillebeau, the bestselling author of The $100 Startup, has created a practical guide for how to do it—whether within a traditional company or business, or by striking out on your own.

Finding the work you were “born to do” isn’t just about discovering your passion. Those who jump out of bed excited to go to work every morning don’t just have jobs that turn their passions into paychecks. They have jobs where they also can lose themselves for hours in the flow of meaningful work.

This intersection of joy, money, and flow is what you’ll learn to find in this book. Through inspiring stories of those who have successfully landed their dream career, as well as actionable tools, exercises, and thought experiments, he’ll guide you through today’s vast menu of career options to discover the work perfectly suited to your unique interests, skills, and experiences.

You’ll learn how to:

  • Hack the job of your dreams within a company or organization by making it work for you
  • Find your ideal work and your ideal working conditions
  • Create plans that will allow you to take smarter career risks and “beat the house” every time
  • Start a profitable “side hustle” and earn extra cash on top of your primary stream of income
  • Escape the prison of working for someone else and build a mini-empire as an entrepreneur
  • Become a rock star at any creative endeavor by creating a loyal base of fans and followers

Whichever path you choose, this book will show you how to find that one job or career that feels so right, it’s like you were born to do it.