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Art of Non-Conformity, The [Paperback]

Chris Guillebeau
3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (20 customer reviews)
RRP: 9.99
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Book Description

25 Aug 2011
Chris Guillebeau shot to fame when he published a report on his blog called 'A Brief Guide to World Domination'. Within weeks, it was downloaded more than 100,000 times in over 60 countries, written about in the New York Times and endorsed by Seth Godin. It outlined a plan to 'take over the world' by doing what is most meaningful whilst helping others in unique way. The Art of Non-Conformity expands upon the gutsy ideas first introduced in Guillebeau's blog, focusing on three areas: life, work and travel.

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Art of Non-Conformity, The + The $100 Startup: Fire Your Boss, Do What You Love and Work Better to Live More + The 4-Hour Work Week: Escape the 9-5, Live Anywhere and Join the New Rich
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Product details

  • Paperback: 242 pages
  • Publisher: TURNAROUND (25 Aug 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1873262760
  • ISBN-13: 978-1873262764
  • Product Dimensions: 14.2 x 19.1 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (20 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 61,483 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Chris Guillebeau is the New York Times bestselling author of The $100 Startup and other books. During a lifetime of self-employment, he visited every country in the world (193 in total) before his 35th birthday. Every summer in Portland, Oregon he hosts the World Domination Summit, a gathering of creative, remarkable people. Connect with Chris on Twitter, on his blog, or at your choice of worldwide airline lounge.

Product Description


"This is a direct, honest and truly scary book. I hope you have the guts to listen to what Chris has to say, and not become one of the monkeys he warns you about."
-Seth Godin, author of "Linchpin"
"Chris Guillebeau is the Indiana Jones of career experts."
-Gretchen Rubin author of "The Happiness Project"
""The Art of Non-Conformity" is like a lightning bolt to the head. Read it and your brain will spark and sizzle."
- Neil Pasricha, author of "The Book of Awesome"
"The conventional world order has blown up, much to the relief of students, cubicle dwellers, artists and activists who knew there was a better way. This brilliant book will wake you up and inspire you as it guides you to create a new life on your own terms, earn a great living and positively impact your corner of the world."
-Pamela Slim, author of "Escape from Cubicle Nation"
"Some people are content to report on others' success. Not Chris. He lives and breathes what.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Disappointed 6 Aug 2011
I wanted to like this book but struggled through it. If you've read blog posts and other such writings on the subject then you're probably not the target audience for this book. It feels like an absolute beginners guide and rather unfocussed. After finishing, I felt I hadn't read anything new here.
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64 of 70 people found the following review helpful
I grew up in an era when "conformity" was a grey, grey word to colour parents, teachers and people with clerical jobs. (Oddly, manual workers were neither conformist nor non-conformist: they were "the workers" and as such outside cultural judgement.) Back then we knew what it was people were conforming to: marriage, children, job-for-life working for a bank or one of the nationalised industries or in government, washing the car on Sunday and middle-brow culture. It meant fitting in with what other people said they expected you to do and believe.

An updated version of this is roughly what Chris Guillebreau means by "conformity". I think he makes two mistakes. The first is that post-modern capitalist economies don't want you to conform, except to your employers' dress and IT codes. Expecting you to conform to anything else would mean setting standards and training people and generally making commitments, and post-modern capitalism needs to be able to dump it, outsource it, price it out of your salary range and generally melt it into air at any time with minimum disruption and expense. The second mistake is that conforming is not about product choice and how we make the rent, and many of the choices we make are constrained by the numbers. Most of us have to work 9-5 because most jobs are 9-5, not freelance. Most of us have to work at what we're good at rather than at what we love, because what we're good at pays and what we love doesn't. Following your bliss is viable if it so happens that your bliss pays enough, or you are prepared to live very cheap.

Indeed, the book's title should be "Live Cheap and You Need Never Go Into The Office".
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
By Brizdaz
I'm not saying this is a bad book to read,nor am I saying it is a great book to read either,but it is quite obvious for people like myself,who read "The Four-Hour Work Week" first,that Chris has just regurgitated a lot what was already said in that book,and just shown us how he has applied a lot of those principles that he learned from reading that book to his own venture here,and at his blog.
That being said,he does promise that a certain percentage of the profit from the sales of this book goes to a charity in Africa,that helps to give the people clean drinking water,so if you find you didn't like this book,at least you have the knowledge of knowing you played a small part in helping there.
And you can always come here and write a review if you feel that bad about having bought it.
My verdict :
An OK read,but if you haven't read "The Four-Hour Work Week",grab that first and read this afterward,and I think you'll see what I mean here.All in all,this is a fine example of a guy trying to put what he learned from reading "The Four-Hour Work Week" into practice,in his own life.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Vague in places, hugely inspiring overall 21 Mar 2012
Chris Guillebeau writes the online manifesto "A Brief Guide to World Domination" and multiple other articles, he is an avid traveller and charity worker as well as free-thinker. This book details some examples and suggestions of how to achieve the life you want, rather than the life you are living.

A lot of his musings are based around age-old tenets like 'be less materialistic' and 'think outside the box' (I'm paraphrasing) and not all of us can live life like Chris, but nonetheless the message within this book should cause some rousing of dissent in even the most stoic of societal sleepwalkers. A couple of times, it's clear that he is pitching to us despite mentioning on several of his checklists about "not selling" to your "army" (readers, devotees) but then references his review score on more than once and plugs a couple of charities at the same time. It's not offensive, but feels a little hypocritical. I can see that part of this is serving his agenda, in the way he is trying to educate us to serve ours, but it probably should have been held out of this book!

Whilst not all of his suggestions will be applicable to your personal situation, it is easy enough to see where he is coming from and do the fine-tuning yourself. A well written book with multiple inspiring quotes from famous visionaries amongst the block text and not heavy in the slightest. Recommended for those trying to extricate themselves from a rut.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
This is the perfect read for anyone who suspects there's more to life than the daily grind of joyless conformity.

Being self-employed, I was inspired and encouraged by Chris Guillebeau's take on 'creative self-employment', in particular using the internet. Though I don't share his passion for travel, I can relate to his quest for the freedom to live a life of creativity, flexibility and fun. His advice is less about becoming wealthy enough to travel the world and more about engineering the lifestyle you love doing work you enjoy. (I'm all for that!) Aside from the work/career/employment advice, there are also some strategies for general life-imporvement (I loved the To Stop Doing list) and tips on how to handle the 'play-it safers, the creatures of the commonplace and the slaves of the ordinary'.

The Art of Non-Conformity is an enjoyable blend of anecdotes, insights, how-to advice and soul-searching questions. There is also an altruistic thread throughout the whole book, exploring what we have to offer the world, in terms of our talents, service and legacy - a healthy and refreshing balance to the pursuit of the our ideal lives.

Inspiring insights, encouraging stories and provocative questions- a fab read. Really enjoyed it.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
1.0 out of 5 stars Nothing new...
... and surprisingly badly written for someone who claims to write a 1000 words a day. If you are attracted by the title, it is likely that you already have ideas that do not... Read more
Published 23 days ago by eveline
5.0 out of 5 stars Pure inspiration!
Very inspiring book that makes you reflect on if the way you work and live your life, is the way you want to work and live your life.
Published 3 months ago by Elin Elkehag
1.0 out of 5 stars I didn't receive this product.
I was really looking forward to getting into this book but it never arrived, and I don't think I was fully refunded. Would love to actually read it.
Published 8 months ago by oh_boy
5.0 out of 5 stars For those that want a on..
Chris Guillebeau is one of those individuals that has got his head in the right space. It's very easy to get swamped by life and its trivia. Read more
Published 11 months ago by Murray
5.0 out of 5 stars Inspired.
As a creative person who has struggled to live in the world of 9 to 5 throughout my career I found this book to be a little haven of hope and inspiration. Read more
Published 15 months ago by Nhadders
3.0 out of 5 stars average
Its an inventive book with some good ideas but its not a ground mover. Constant references to 'ignore this if you disagree' or 'stop reading if you are doing this already'... Read more
Published 18 months ago by Mr. J. S. Jarrett
2.0 out of 5 stars Non conformist?
M. Guillebeau, How about this for non-conformist careers advice - DO Complete Grad school, spend several years learning the many and complex and changing skill sets necessary to... Read more
Published 19 months ago by PierreLeD
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant and inspirational!
I recently finished The Art of Non-Conformity: Set Your Own Rules, Live the Life You Want, and Change the World by Chris Guillebeau and it is just amazing. Absolutely blew me away. Read more
Published 22 months ago by Rebekka K. Steg
3.0 out of 5 stars Some new ideas but lacks the spark
I quite liked this book. It shared new ideas and thoughts often lacking in this genre. I found the idea of positive rather than no work enlightening, particularly the level of work... Read more
Published 23 months ago by jennyw86
4.0 out of 5 stars A new perspective on how to live your life your way
Chris Guillebeau is one of those people who travels,works and makes the world a better place.This inspiring book is full of practical and philosophical ideas to do the same by... Read more
Published on 13 April 2012 by Amazon Customer
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