A fantastic lecture-turned-essay by William Deresiewicz on leadership, bureaucracy, the myth of multitasking, working, thinking, and how all of that fits together so as to give yourself the space to form your own ideas.

(Via Nick Charlton via email.)

Monday, October 24

Kristina Dell’s article for Time about solo entrepreneurs, including Marco Arment and Maciej Ceglowski.

Thursday, May 26

“Prepare like crazy so you can wing it.”

Balancing Think and Feel

Yesterday I wrote about how easy it is to over-think and over-edit the things I write about and link to on the site. This is also something Ben and I talked about in the latter half of last week’s episode of The B&B Podcast.

It’s a topic spanning much more than just link blogging. I think it goes so far as to encompasses leadership, creativity, and entrepreneurialism as a whole. The concept is to find the balance between think and feel. On one hand you have logic and reason, and on the other hand you have passion and zeal.

There is a way to do things where, if you find something you’re passionate about, you jump right in. And then analyze and gauge each step along the way.

But what if we flipped that approach from time to time?

When you find something you’re passionate or excited about, then think about it for a long time. Make boundaries. And then? Go for it. Let passion and zeal drive us through each step as we keep within our pre-determined boundaries.

The idea is that sometimes, instead of working with restraint inside of passion, try to put passion inside of restraint.

Monday, May 9

Scott Adams has an article in the Wall Street Journal today. Scott’s a fantastic writer, and his piece for the Journal is a savvy combination of stories, advice, and wit.

That’s the year I learned that if there’s a loophole, someone’s going to drive a truck through it, and the people in the truck will get paid better than the people under it.


Simplicity makes ideas powerful. Want examples? Read anything by Steve Jobs or Warren Buffett.

Wednesday, April 13

Eric Floehr on taking his part-time side job, ForecastWatch, full time:

Once you have the time to focus on something, the opportunities that you hadn’t had time to notice before suddenly open up. Just the act of making something your focus almost makes your goal come to fruition. For years you think “too risky, too risky” and then once you make that jump, things fall in place.

I’ve only been writing shawnblanc.net full-time for 8 days now, so I can’t yet say that all the opportunities I hadn’t previously had time for are now suddenly opening up. But it sure looks and feels like that’s the direction things are headed.

(Hat tip to reader, Jared Updike.)

Austin Kleon on “Farming”

Last week Austin Kleon posted an article titled, “How to Steal Like an Artist (An 9 Other Things Nobody Told Me)”. There are things you read where you learn something new, and there are the things you read which shed a new light on what you already know and believe in. For me Austin’s article is the latter. And it is one of the best things I have read all week.

However, keeping with the Wil Shipley analogy of farming vs. mining, a better title for Austin’s article would be something along the lines of “How to Be a Farmer.” Because Austin primarily discusses getting off your butt, ignoring your doubts and insecurities, and doing the work you love to do.

As I was reading it I was getting all sorts of little lightbulbs and connections going off in my mind. Here are a few of those items:

You see, there are those who look at a building a website (or a software program, or a business, or fill in the blank) as a way to make money. The project is simply a means to an end, and that end goal is bucketloads of money.

And then there are those who look at building something because they want to do what they love. And for them money is a tool. Instead of money being the end goal, money becomes the means to a goal — and that goal is doing things they love and creating something they’re proud of.

Tuesday, March 15

Some great stories and good advice from Jason Fried:

People’s reasons for buying things often don’t match up with the company’s reason for selling them.

“You think you’re being a leader, but you’re probably being a manager.”