09 Sep The Happiness of Pursuit: A Book Review
It all started with a little internet browsing (via an incredibly slow stick modem) in our rural apartment in Jamaica. We were Peace Corps Volunteers on a small island for two years, and our wanderlust was growing. Somehow, I stumbled upon a blog by a fellow Portlander, Chris Guillebeau, who opened my mind to the viability of an unconventional life full of long-term travel.
Chris’s blog, The Art of Non-Conformity, was generous in providing resources to leverage airline award programs and credit card offers in a methodical, responsible way. Chris himself has now been to every country in the world, and many others who use similar “travel hacking” methods fly multiple times a year to international destinations. We, too, are using these methods- although we’re starting slow, just scratching the surface of what’s possible, with two international trips this year.
After we returned from Peace Corps this past Spring, we jumped on the chance to volunteer for the annual World Domination Summit in Portland, which was founded by Chris. This is a gathering of entrepreneurs, bloggers, creatives, travelers, and world-changers who are pursuing Community, Adventure, and Service and seeking to “live a remarkable life in a conventional world.”
At that conference, Chris announced his new book: The Happiness of Pursuit: Finding The Quest That Will Bring Purpose To Your Life. Although his pursuit of traveling to every country on the planet had ended, Chris found that there were many other people out there pursuing amazing quests, too.
This book is a compilation of inspiring stories and practical tips, gleaned from folks who have made big things happen in their lives.
Many of the people in the book, like crafter Elise Blaha Cripe, journalist A.J. Jacobs, and environmentalist John Francis were featured speakers at this year’s World Domination Summit. Several of my favorite stories in The Happiness of Pursuit involved epic travels, like introvert Nate Damm who walked across the U.S. Other favorites were those who went to great lengths for a particular cause. Learning about the struggles, sacrifices, and achievements that each of these “questers” undertook gave me oodles of ideas for pursuits of my own.
Rather than summarize further, I just want to wrap up with some of my favorite quotes from the book:
Have you ever wanted to do something bigger in your life? Maybe a quest is for you. Let me know if you get the book and what you think of it. It releases Tuesday, September 9, 2014.
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