A short list of role models for creating a career and life you want in an unconventional manner. If you’re looking for sources of inspiration, look no further.

Ash Ambirge

In the digital age we’re living in now, success awaits those who are willing to ask hard questions, take a stand, and be daringly, unflinchingly, trusting of themselves.

Recommended

You Don’t Need a Job–You Need Guts (blog post & mini course)

Ash Ambirge’s website

Ayodeji Awosika

They mean well, but they just don’t get it. That’s okay. I’ve come to realize that when you are seeking to do something that’s different, the people around you might not understand it.

Recommended

There Are Two Ways to Deal With a Soul-Sucking Job – Only One is Right (blog post)

Ayodeji Awosika’s website

James Altucher

I have lots of ideas. How do I pick the right one? Execute on as many as possible. The right idea will pick you.

Recommended

Choose Yourself: Be Happy, Make Millions, Live the Dream (book)

James Altucher’s website

Lauren Holliday

Don’t settle for a full-time job you hate. Hack freelancing until you know what it is that you want out of a career, which may not turn out to be an actual full-time, in-office gig.

Recommended

How I went from underemployed waitress to the top 1% of millennials in 6 months (blog post)

Lauren Holliday’s website

Mike Rowe

Why worry about doing something you love? Figure out what the opportunity is. Find a thing, get good at it, learn to love it later.

Recommended

The S.W.E.A.T. Pledge (pledge)

Mike Rowe’s website

Ryan Holiday

We forget: In life, it doesn’t matter what happens to you or where you came from. It matters what you do with what happens and what you’ve been given.

Recommended

How Dropping Out of College Can Save Your Life (blog post)

The Obstacle is the Way (book)

Ryan Holiday’s website

Scott Adams

Creativity is allowing yourself to make mistakes. Art is knowing which ones to keep.

Recommended

How to Fail at Almost Anything and Still Win Big (book)

Scott Adam’s website

Taylor Pearson

The problem both for us as a society and as individuals is that we’re asking the wrong question: “How do I get a job doing that?” What if the better question is: “How do I create a job doing that?”

Recommended

The End of Jobs (book)

Taylor Pearson’s website

Tim Ferriss

The question you should be asking isn’t, “What do I want?” or “What are my goals?” but “What would excite me?”

Recommended

The Tim Ferriss Show (podcast)

The 4-Hour Workweek (book

Tim Ferriss’s website

T.K. Coleman

“Keeping it real” isn’t just a matter of facing up to harsh facts. It also includes opening up to the plethora of possibilities that offer us ways of impacting the world in spite of adversity.” 

Recommended

The Interesting Stuff is the Important Stuff (blog post)

T.K. Coleman’s website

Venkatesh Rao

Learning helps us increase our store of usable information and lower risk. 

Recommended

Breaking Smart (essay series)

Venkatesh Rao’s blog


These people, the work they do, and the ideas they share inspire us. We hope they inspire you!

Got anyone you’d add? Let us know who by tweeting at us!