Creators' Corner #13 - remembering Pacco, the Pathless Path and how to be successful

Creators' Corner #13 - remembering Pacco, the Pathless Path and how to be successful
New essay: in memory of Pacco.

Hey everyone 👋. Thanks for all the feedback on the Fisherman's Guide to Writing last week. I'm happy it resonated with so many of you. If you missed it, click the link here. I plan to continue working on this essay over the next few months to extend the metaphor. Stay tuned.

Five new people join us this week bringing the total up to 125 subscribers. Thanks so much  for being an early subscriber. If you enjoy the newsletter, please forward it on. If you have 10 seconds to share a comment or idea, please hit reply.

Line-up this week:

  1. New essay: remembering Pacco
  2. New sketch: marginal gains
  3. Creator in the spotlight: Paul Millerd
  4. My favourites: article and quote of the week
  5. Running for those who can't

1. In Memory of Pacco

We laid our dog to rest last Friday.

I wrote a few words in memory of him.

He was more than a dog. He made me a better person.

In Memory of Pacco
We laid Pacco to rest last Friday. It was a warm summer’s evening. The birds were chirping. A soft wind was rustling the leaves on the trees. He went to sleep peacefully in my and Jess’s arms. He had been diagnosed with a brain tumour towards the end

2. New sketch

Just start.

I believe more people should write online. Starting is the hardest step. It gets easier from there.

Over the last few months, I have seen the marginal gains from publishing consistently. My first newsletter took over ten hours to complete, but since then the time has reduced each week. Now I'm at a point where I can create an edition in about three hours. (Ok, maybe four hours if I'm completely honest.)

As I improve my systems and info capture during the week, I expect this to drop even further.

3. Creator in the spotlight

Our creator in the spotlight this week is Paul Millerd.

I started reading his book, The Pathless Path: Imagining a New Story For Work and Life, on Saturday and I haven’t put it down since. I don’t think I’ve underlined a book this much before.

Paul's story is inspiring. Like many of us, he followed the set path of trying to get good grades at school, going to university and finding a job. He was a top performer, landing a high-profile career at McKinsey followed by an MBA at MIT.

But he wasn't happy. He became disillusioned. He realised he wasn't into the world of chasing prestige and jumping through hoops to move up the corporate ladder. He decided to give up the shiny career to follow his own path – the pathless path as he calls it. He experimented with freelance work, writing and coaching. He embraced uncertainty and gave up the script others follow.

“On the pathless path, the goal is not to find a job, make money, build a business, or achieve any other metric. It’s to actively and consciously search for the work that you want to keep doing.”

Stories like these give me courage. They inspire me to keep writing and exploring my interests. There is a path out there waiting to be found.

4. My favourites

Article of the week

This essay by Sam Altman, CEO of OpenAI and former president of Y Combinator, on how to be successful:

How To Be Successful
I’ve observed thousands of founders and thought a lot about what it takes to make a huge amount of money or to create something important. Usually, people start off wanting the former and end up...


  • Lesson #4 'Get good at sales' touches on the power of writing:
"Getting good at communication—particularly written communication—is an investment worth making. My best advice for communicating clearly is to first make sure your thinking is clear and then use plain, concise language."
  • Lesson #5 'Make it easy to take risks' on the benefits of taking small bets:
"Most people overestimate risk and underestimate reward. Taking risks is important because it’s impossible to be right all the time—you have to try many things and adapt quickly as you learn more.[...] Look for small bets you can make where you lose 1x if you’re wrong but make 100x if it works. Then make a bigger bet in that direction."

Quote of the week

“Never forget why you’re really doing what you’re doing. Are you helping people? Are they happy? Are you happy? Are you profitable? Isn’t that enough?” - Derek Sivers

From Sivers's inspirational book Anything You Want. Resurfaced while I was reading The Pathless Path.

5. Running for those who can't

The Wings for Life World Run took place this past Sunday. My team and I set out to complete at least 30km running for those who can't.

It was an awesome day out. I managed to complete 33km at 4:44/km before the catcher car passed me. A few of my teammates went even further, with our top runner completing 43km at a 4:20/km pace. Incredible 🤯.

Most importantly, our team raised €1,209.00 towards spinal chord research. Something to be proud of!

Have a great weekend and happy creating.

-- John


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