🛣️ The Pathless Path
The most recommended book of 2023 by the productivity guru Ali Abdaal is called 👣 The Pathless Path.
Weirdly enough, the author Paul Millard sent me his book. ✏️ Signed it himself!
🔒 The Default Path
We all are very familiar with the default path. 🎓 Graduate from school, 💼 get a job, 🥰 fall in love, 💍 get married... personally I'm on step (3) lol.
Unfortunately, this comes with the idea that your identity is your job. And it might be hard to define but prestige has a lot to do with it. You get attention when you do things that others see as impressive.
But how do you design a life that does not put work first?
🐦💨 Breaking Free
Well, he says the answer is simple. You underachieve at work.
Nope. No. Absolutely not. I refuse (anyone else with me? 🙋🏼♀️). So am I screwed? Can I not break free?
Welp, if you don't want to underachieve at work, you will have to design non-work sabbaticals. Tim Ferris argues, "why not take the usual 20-30 year retirement and redistribute it throughout life instead of saving it all for the end."
Solid point Tim. I am considering designing mini-retirements. Every 7 ish years. But this requires you to quit your job every 7 years if your company does not have sabbatical programs.
The other option is you quit your job and freelance full-time. The author Paul, quit his job and moved to Thailand. I find this option terrifying and this is why:
- 📉 What if I suck?
- 💰 What happens if I have no money?
- 😷 What if I get sick?
The author recommends these steps if you are scared of change:
- ✏️ Write down the change you are making (freelancing full time, mini-retirement, non-work sabbatical)
- 📝 List the worst possible outcomes
- 🎯 Identify actions you could take to mitigate those outcomes
- ⏪ List some steps or actions you might take to get back to where you are today
💳 Misery Tax
Consider misery tax if you are worried about running out of money from taking a break from work or starting your own freelance business.
Misery tax is the spending an unhappy worker allocates to things that "keep you going and keep you functioning in the job" (Ex. 🍸 Alcohol, 🍴 expensive food, 🌴 vacations).
🗝️ Key Takeaways
Although I am not going to quit my job... It was awesome to read about someone who dared to walk away from their work identity, move to Thailand, start their own business, and become extremely successful.
You have more options than you think.
📑 Companion Reads
In his book, he referenced Designing Your Life a few times and it does not disappoint. The Good Enough Job came out after this book was published, but it gives me very similar vibes about removing your identity from work.
🔗 Designing Your Life: https://amzn.to/4a6jVFP
🔗 The Good Enough Job: https://amzn.to/47ZUWmh
🎬 Full Video
This YouTube video I filmed on the book got over 3,000+ views! If you want to see a deeper dive into the book, check it out.
🔗 The Pathless Path: https://amzn.to/3T6WXIC