They say it takes a village to raise a child. I think that’s true. Whether we like it or not, we’re all connected in one way or another – even here on the vast and seemingly impersonal Internet.
Of course, in any village, online or otherwise, there are always a few people that stand out as the pillars of the community.
I don’t really believe in luck, but sometimes I can’t help but feel lucky – lucky because I’ve been the recipient of the generosity of many people who have made a profound difference in the way that I live my life and do my work.
Gratitude is a feeling I try to cultivate every day and, with the Thanksgiving holiday just around the corner, I’ve been thinking about it a lot. I have much to be thankful for, but I don’t always say it enough to the people who deserve it. That’s why, today, I want to say thanks to some of the people, outside of my family, that have made a real, honest to God difference in my life. They’ve helped to shape who I am and how I do my work here at Riskology.co.
Whether some of them know it or not, these people are the secret Riskology.co support team.
This isn’t just for me to say thank you and it isn’t just for them to hear it. It’s also for you. If you’re taking a risk in your own life and need a support staff, this list is a good place to start. You don’t need to ask them to be part of your circle, just start paying attention to what they have to say. You’ll learn a lot.
Presenting to you, in no particular order, the top secret Riskology.co support team:
Chris Guillebeau – Art of Non-Conformity
I’m not the only one who holds this opinion, but Chris is one of my favorite people on the planet. I’ve worked on a few projects with Chris and am extremely grateful to be able to learn from him. If you ever need a hand with your world domination plans, he’s your go-to guy.
Thanks so much, Chris, for helping me see so many possibilities.
J.D. Roth – Get Rich Slowly
I can’t say enough about J.D. My guide, Take This Job & Shove It would never have been possible without him, and Get Rich Slowly has taught me most of what I know today about personal finance after finding his site while gainfully employed and no idea what to do with my paycheck. If you think you have to be an expert to create something valuable, look at J.D. He started GRS thousands of dollars in debt before turning his life around and creating one of the most respected blogs on the internet. He was willing to share himself and his journey and he turned it into a valuable resource for hundreds of thousands of people.
Thank you, J.D., for showing me how to turn adversity into a gift.
Danielle LaPorte – White Hot Truth
This woman makes my soul shake, which I believe, for her, means mission accomplished. Danielle is an entrepreneur and strategist that has the unique ability to help people mange the incredibly murky waters between business and emotion. She’s a true fire starter and the person you want on your team when you’re ramping things up in life.
Thanks, Danielle, for showing me how powerful brute honesty can be.
Karol Gajda – Ridiculously Extraordinary
I caught up with Karol (that’s pronounced like “Carl”) on Skype for the first time a few days ago and was pleasantly surprised to find that he’s the same person no matter where you find him. If there’s one thing I’ve learned from Karol, it’s how to be authentic and project who you really are. Soon, he’ll be headed off on a roller coaster tour of America, likely surviving with the strategies that he teaches in his guide on how to live anywhere.
Thanks, Karol, for being the real deal.
Ramit Sethi – I Will Teach You to Be Rich
Ramit is a personal finance ninja who made a name for himself by focusing on earning more when everyone else was trying to figure out how to spend less, but that’s not why I admire him. I admire Ramit because he knows exactly how to communicate with people so that they’ll understand what he’s saying. No one I know is a more effective communicator than him.
When I wrote a guest article for him, it was good, but he spent 2 weeks helping me tweak it to make it great. I quietly questioned some of his advice, but when I saw the results of the article, I surrendered.
Thanks, Ramit, for pushing me to up my game.
Erica Douglass – Erica.biz
If there were ever an example of someone who deserves every bit of success they get, it’s Erica. She’s just that darn nice. After selling her web hosting company for $1 million at 26, she now runs one of the Internet’s most popular small business blogs. I’ve learned at least a few business strategies that I employ every day on Riskology.co from her and she always goes the extra mile to help when you have a question.
Thanks, Erica, for showing me the meaning of true service.
Nathan Hangen – NathanHangen.com
Almost every time I learn about something new on the internet, Nathan either created it or helped someone else create it. Nathan got started as a blogger, but he’s more of an Internet Renaissance Man and I really admire his willingness to step outside the boundaries of his niche and show people that there’s more than one way to be successful. Nathan also helped me with the design of Riskology.co in the very early days and continues to be a great person to bounce ideas off of.
Thanks, Nathan, for showing me what it means to be versatile.
Adam Baker – Man vs. Debt
I love Adam because every time someone writes me an email asking how to change their life if they have a family to support, I have the perfect case study to point to. Adam, his wife, Courtney, and their daughter, Milligan, completely turned around their finances, sold all their junk, uprooted their lives, and traveled around the world as a testament to families everywhere that “yes, it is possible.”
Thank you, Adam, for showing me what’s possible.
Pam Slim – Escape from Cubicle Nation
A few months before I was laid off and started Riskology.co, a friend gave me a book that would change everything about how I felt and looked at self-employment. It was called Escape from Cubicle Nation, and it was a fascinating read that took all the scary parts about staring a business and made them feel very manageable. My wheels started turning but, at the time, I had no idea just how important that book was going to be to me.
Thank you, Pam, for helping me see through some very murky waters.
Sean Ogle – Location 180
I can’t remember exactly when it was I learned about Sean, but I met him for the first time over a beer in Portland at a bar for dogs. He was working for an investment firm and trying to find a way out. I was working for a construction firm doing the same thing. When his company wouldn’t budge on his remote work proposal, he went all in and left. Six months later, he’d been all over SE Asia and found a new, location independent job so that he could do business from anywhere. Now, Sean comes over once in awhile to school me on guitar and teach me a thing or two about travel.
Thanks, Sean, for teaching me a thing or two about courage.
Steve Kamb – Nerd Fitness
Steve runs the only health related site I’ve seen that doesn’t make me 1) fall asleep or 2) feel terrible about myself. In fact, it does exactly the opposite and Steve’s done an awesome job of making fitness fun again by relating it to the parts of my life I actually care about. I’ve learned a lot of great bodyweight exercises from Steve that help me stay fit for all my adventures without ever going to some lame gym.
Thanks, Steve, for adding plenty of Star Wars references to my daily workouts.
Tammy Strobel – Rowdy Kittens
A car-free minimalist and cheerleader for simple living and simple business, Tammy and her husband, Logan, have been great friends of mine since the early days of this site and they’ve helped me, many times over dinner, figure out how to do all the crazy stuff I want to by keeping things simple. They’re a calming force in my life.
Thanks Tammy & Logan, for all your help and support.
Mark Powers – Powers Percussion
Knowing Mark is like having a rock star drummer for a friend. That’s mostly because Mark is a rock star drummer. More than just playing gigs around the world with famous bands though, he’s a true student, teacher, and promoter of the art, regularly traveling to Africa to study and work with charities to bring the art to the less fortunate.
Thanks, Mark, for all the artistic inspiration.
Jonathan Fields – JonathanFields.com
I’m extremely grateful to Jonathan because he changed a fundamental process in my life that has made me a better person all the way around when he pointed out just how important the last 1% is to everything you do. I’ve always been good at starting things and not so great at finishing them as strongly. Now I look at my projects a little differently and it’s made all the difference in the world. Jonathan is also the author of an amazing book about work, Career Renegade.
Thanks, Jonathan, for pushing me that last little bit.
Naomi Dunford – IttyBiz
Naomi doesn’t know it and neither do you, but the reason you’re reading this site is because I try to write the most interesting and helpful things I can, and I learned a lot about that from her. An expert in authentic marketing, Naomi knows how to take every curse word invented and turn them into sales copy that makes you want to pay her just to swear at you.
Thanks, Naomi, for teaching me about how to be interesting and helpful.
Corbett’s the mastermind behind two popular sites, Free Pursuits, which focuses on lifestyle entrepreneurship and Think Traffic, which is all about helping website owners drive more traffic to their sites. Don’t ask me how he does it. Corbett’s a strategic genius and he’s helped me answer a number of questions I’ve had as I navigate my first product launch and has helped me turn Riskology.co into a true business.
Thank you, Corbett, for all the help you should have charged me for.
Mark McGuinness – Lateral Action
On the day I launched Riskology.co, Mark McGuinness wrote to congratulate me on Twitter and offer a guest post spot on his site. You can probably guess what my answer was. Mark’s a coach for creative entrepreneurs and he’s brilliant in his unique approach to solving the problems that we creative types often run into. He’s been a big supporter of Riskology.co since the very beginning and I can’t thank him enough for it. But I’ll try anyway…
Thanks, Mark, for believing in me from day one.
Gretchen Rubin – The Happiness Project
About a year ago, Gretchen taught me one, simple tactic that would completely change my life and make me a happier person every single day and she didn’t even try to sell it to me; she just gave it away – smile, even when you don’t feel like it. If you’ve never tried it, that probably sounds ridiculous, but it is unbelievable how effective it is.
Thanks, Gretchen, for helping me learn to be a happier person.
Everett Bogue – Far Beyond the Stars
What can I say about Everett? Half that time he has me cheering “Yes!” and the other half going “Nooo!” and that’s precisely what I like about him. His no BS approach to minimalism is often grating but always inspiring. I’ve learned plenty from Everett, and he has one of my favorite success stories, quitting his job in New York and moving to the other side of the country with nothing but a backpack and $3,000 to see if he could make it. I won’t hold you in suspense: he made it… and wrote a book about it.
Thanks, Everett, for giving it to me straight.
Mars Dorian – MarsDorian.com
I’ll be honest – I still don’t know what to make of Mars, but that’s the best part about him. He’s got more energy any given day than most people can muster in a lifetime and he’s using it to help as many people as he can learn how to be themselves online and spread their digital influence. You might call him a personal branding ninja, but I don’t know if one title could really fit a guy like Mars.
Thanks, Mars, for infusing me with energy by association.
Please, pay these folks a visit; it’s worth your time. Most of them don’t know it, but they played a big role in Making Riskology.co what it is. For that, I am extremely grateful.