World Domination Summit 2012: Readings

This past weekend, I attended the World Domination Summit. This was my second #WDS (I blogged about last year’s experience herehere, and here). I will post thoughts of my own about this year’s event a little bit later, but I wanted to highlight these five posts by other attendees that have resonated with me so far:

1) “10 Things I Learned at the World Domination Summit” by Elana Miller:

There is no great time to create, so you learn to keep creating, even if you don’t feel like it. If you wait around for the creative well to flow before you start doing anything, you might be waiting for a long time. People who learn to put in the work even when they don’t feel like it are able to chip away at their goals, one small step at a time.

2) “The $100 Bet” by Rami the Gutsy Geek. Everyone in attendance at #WDS this year received a $100 gift (investment) as the event concluded on Sunday afternoon. Chris Guillebeau, the founder of World Domination Summit, encouraged us to do something unique and inspiring with the gift, with the underlying themes of community, adventure, and service. What kind of story will you tell? So I liked the bet that Rami proposed:

More importantly, when you trusted me with $100 in cash to kickstart a goal, well, I couldn’t let you down. But I’m a competitive guy, and “here’s $100, go live a dream” doesn’t work for me as well as putting my pride on the line.

Instead, I’ve opted to turn the money into a bet, with 10-to-1 odds in your favor.

Here’s the deal: I bet you $100 that by July 5th 2013 [editor’s note: July 5th 2013 will be the opening night of WDS next year], my book will be ready for publishing.

I may not have an agent or a publishing deal, but I will have a fully finished manuscript.

3) “Don’t Stop Believing” by Brandon Sutton. Brandon provides some detail on how he was chosen to go on stage and sing Journey’s “Don’t Stop Believing” to a crowd of 1,000 attendees:

As surely as I write this, the music started, and Journey’s massive hit song, Don’t Stop Believing began to play. Chris got the crowd started as the rest of us provided backup. A few lines into the song, Michelle nudged me forward and Chris turned around and handed me the microphone.

This is probably a good time to mention that I’m not a fan of karaoke, have never sung karaoke, and haven’t sung in front of people since I was a little kid in church.

But there I was, on stage with a live microphone and 1,000 people singing along to one of the songs that defined an entire generation. After the initial shock wore off, I embraced it and really got into the groove. The music carried me away to a place I never knew existed, and the inner performer in me assumed the role.

Lunging forward to reach out to the crowd, the words and emotions poured out of me like a raging river. It was something I never in a million years expected, but wow did it kick off the weekend with a bang. Talk about vulnerability!

Brandon also gave a heartfelt presentation about Kids of the Gulf, a documentary film featuring two kids that are determined to have a positive impact in the Gulf coast region in the aftermath of the BP oil spill in 2010. I encourage you to check it out.

4) “World Domination Summit 2.0 and 8 Ways to Take Action on the Inspiration” by Farnoosh. I wanted to highlight this passage, which rang true for me last year and might happen again this year (and I have the feeling for others as well):

Oh yes, the stories. Inspiration was at the heart of every story. Stories like overcoming breast cancer and living to play it in a humorous song on the guitar, or building a water charity that helps deliver clean water to the poorest villages of Africa after wasting away the first part of life as a night-club promoter. Stories of waking up to a miserable career after 20 years of service to a company and turning things around because it’s never too late. Stories of starting businesses and making sacrifices and building something that makes a difference in this world.

Stories of not taking no for an answer and not playing by the conventional rules and systems, stories of finding solutions rather than playing a victim all your life.

Stories of believing in the infinite power of your dreams, and the true potential within your reach.

Inspiration is the easy part. You just have to be open to receiving, to hearing stories, to watching and observing and listening, and you will be filled to the brim with inspiration.

What comes after inspiration, now that’s not so easy. That’s the part where things stop looking sexy and shiny and sweet. That’s the day after the conference. That’s the long afternoon when you are home alone staring at your monitor and trying to re-capture the moments.

5) “What 1,000 Boomer’s Kids Did This Past Weekend” by Ken Solin at the Huffington Post. I really enjoyed Ken’s perspective on the event:

I don’t recall any speakers talking about making money beyond following your dreams and hopefully making a few bucks. The speakers preached being doers, not talkers. These young men and women already know something I only discovered in my sixties: Life isn’t just about stuff. They could teach their parents something about that.

For the first time in a very long while, I felt hopeful about America’s future. With men and women like those attending the WDS Conference, perhaps there’s hope after all. Their global approach to problems on a very personal level feels like a huge shift from the apathy that abounds in America regarding Third World people.


If you’ve found any other inspring/interesting posts recapping the event, please leave a comment below. Thanks!

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