rework

Claire Diaz-Ortiz – Writer

Claire Diaz-Ortiz is a public speaker and author of Twitter for Good. These are her good things.

Good things to read.

Rework. An amazing book on rethinking how we think work. Think short, sweet, smart.

Fascinate. Do you want to fascinate others? You should. Otherwise you’re, well, boring. This book tells you how to be the awesomesauce you want to be.

Thrive. It’s not just about thriving in business, it’s about thriving in life. Arianna Huffington shows you how.

Good things to watch.

The Killing! Tv at its most golden (and dark… and rainy…).

Fargo. Once you get past the fact that this tv series is still not set in North Dakota, of course.

House Hunters International. Because every real estate maven (that’s me!) needs a good 12-hour HGTV marathon.

Good things to use.

The Oral-B Professional Care 1000: The best electric toothbrush. Hands down. And if you don’t yet use an electric toothbrush, we need to have a sit down.

Baby Connect. The best app for new mamas (and papas). ignore the others. Get this and track away.

A pencil. For filling out the NY Times crossword puzzle, that is. (except Sundays, because those are only for crazy people).

Connect with Claire on Twitter, @Claire.

Brandon – Mad FIentist

Brandon is the host of the Mad FIentist podcast and author at MadFIentist.com where he talks and writes about financial independence, these are his good things.

Good things to read.

How I Found Freedom in an Unfree World by Harry Browne.   I’m going to have to repeat a book that was already recommended by one of your other guests, Jim Collins (he is the person who actually recommended the book to me).
I can honestly say this book has changed my mindset more than any other book ever has. Its main message is that you are inherently free to do whatever you like with your life. However, there are many “traps” that attempt to limit your freedom, like pressures from society, family expectations, etc. Ultimately though, you have the power to break free from those traps and live a life that truly makes you happy.
As someone who is following an unorthodox financial path, I’ve always written my own rules with regards to money but this book made me realize I could expand that thinking into all areas of my life.

Shantaram by Gregory David Roberts. I’m currently pursuing a graduate degree while working full time so I haven’t had much time for pleasure reading in the past few years but last month I went on vacation and got to read a fabulous book called Shantaram. The book is based on a true story about an ex-addict who escaped from prison in Australia and then fled to India. It was written by the escaped convict himself and follows his story as he lives in the slums of Bombay, joins the Indian mafia, spends time in prison, and eventually goes to war in Afghanistan. It is an incredible story that highlights the importance of relationships and the life-changing effects of immersing yourself in another culture.

Rework by Jason Fried and David Heinemeier Hansson.  When looking at Amazon to find out how to spell the authors’ names, I noticed a quote by Mark Cuban that sells the book much better than I could: “If given a choice between investing in someone who has read REWORK or has an MBA, I’m investing in REWORK every time. This is a must read for every entrepreneur.”

So save yourself $40K+, read Rework, start a business, and then go ask Mark Cuban for funding.

Good things to watch.

In Bruges. This dark comedy has become one of my favorite movies and since not many of my friends have seen it, I tend to show it to everyone that comes to visit me. It is quite violent at times and is definitely not for children but it has great acting, a beautiful setting (Bruges, Belgium), funny Irish humor, and excellent music to tie it all together.

Long Way Round. This documentary series follows Ewan McGregor and Charlie Boorman as they travel from London to New York on their motorcycles. If this series doesn’t make you want to break away from your cubicle and go travel the world, I don’t know what would.

Watch your money.  You should try to keep track of everything you spend money on for a single month. You can sign up to mint.com to make this easier but even if it’s a bit of a pain, it’s only for 30 days.

At the end of the month, take a look at where your money went and ask yourself for every item on the list, “if giving this up meant I could quit my job tomorrow, would I give it up?” If you answer yes, seriously consider giving it up because it’s obviously not as important to you as your freedom is. Then, take the money that you were spending on all the things you decided to give up and invest it or use it to pay off debts every month instead.

It’s amazing how much money people spend on things that really aren’t important to them, while being stuck in jobs they don’t enjoy, so doing this exercise will allow you to eliminate those unnecessary expenses and will help you eventually buy your freedom.

Good things to use.

Wunderlist.  A great to-do list app that allows you to easily sync your to-do lists between all of your devices.

Spotify.  Spotify gives me the music collection I always dreamed of having as a kid, for free!

A Mac.  I hesitated to list this for fear of being thought of as a Mac fanboy.

I actually used to be anti-Mac. Why spend a lot of money to get a Mac when you could get a perfectly good PC for half the price?

When I started at my current job three years ago, however, they gave me a brand new Macbook Pro and I have to say, I’ll never go back. It actually makes me sad inside when I see other people using a Windows machine because I know how much better their lives could be if they made the switch.

Connect with the Mad FIentist, @madfientist.

John Saddington – Entrepreneur

John Saddington blogs at John.do and is running  ran a Kickstarter campaign for a photo filtering app for WordPress.

Good things to read.

The first is Daniel Pink’s book Drive, which is an incredible book that highlights some of the elements that really motivate us to do our best and most enjoyable work. I recommend this book to every single person I meet because in one way or another it challenges them to rethink the way they see work as well as how they are going to do it. It also challenges them to think so much bigger than where they are currently and see a much brighter future.

The second thing to read is 37signals’ Rework, a fun read that can be done in 2-3 minute segments, sometimes even less. Challenging some long-held beliefs of work and productivity, they come at those ideas from a software perspective but it’s equally applicable in every environment. They speak plainly about things like “meetings” and how they are “toxic” to productivity. When was the last time you were enthused about your Monday-morning status call?

Thirdly, Andy Stanley’s When Work and Family Collide, a firm reminder about the true loves of my own life and the reason I do what I do. This was one of the first corporate things I had my company do when we started so that we could align ourselves together as a team.

Good things to watch.

The first thing you need to watch is Kevin Rose’ Foundation interviews. These interviews are candid and powerful with some of the innovators of our time. Bookmark and watch one a week.

Secondly, many of the TED talks are amazing. I watch at least one of these a week for inspiration as well as keeping me abreast of some of the foremost thinkers in fields that are outside of my own expertise. This helps me expand my ideas about how I’m implementing and creating products as well as keeps me on the edge of advancement and critical thought.

Thirdly, the popular channel over at Youtube. I do this not just for entertainment purposes but also so that I’m aware of the trending topics and memes that may be important for me to know about. Many of the ingenious products, companies, and innovators were sourced through Youtube and I’m still very fascinated with the mechanics of video and virality.

Good things to use.

I keep my toolkit lean and simple. The first thing that I use is my personal notebook, for sketches, wireframes, and capturing ideas. I’m particularly found of Action Method journals.

Secondly, my iPhone 5. I know, I know, but my entire life and business can be captured in my pocket. The power of this truth is mind-numbing and also very scary.

Finally, water. You must hydrate. Trust me. Most of us don’t drink enough. A simple cup of water will do.

Find more of John on Twitter, @Saddington.