The 10 Most Popular Posts of Agile Lifestyle 2014

The most popular posts of 2014 had a little bit of everything—psychology, entrepreneurship, minimalism, and everything you’ve come to expect from Agile Lifestyle.

Let’s look back on the top 10 posts of 2014 and see what you might’ve missed.

The Top 10 of 2014

These are the most popular articles published in 2014, as chosen by you guys. As always, there were some no-brainers, some surprises, and everything in between.

This year, I was also proud of What “Virtuous Cycles” and “Zero Days” Have to Do With Building Better Habits, What Skydivers and Jeff Bezos Can Teach Us About Leading Fulfilling Lives (which was also cited by Business Insider), Cues, Chunking, and Neural Pathways: The Science of How Habits Are Formed, 3 Crucial Lessons for Leaders From the Up Side of Down, and my most recent article, Leaders Eat Last: The Surprising Truth About Working for Bad Leaders.

But for a variety reasons (like some just being too recent), these weren’t the most popular new posts published in 2014.

Here’s the list:

1. 8 Traits of Tough-Minded People. How Many Do You Have?

The pace of change isn’t slowing down. That’s one of the fundamental lessons of Agile Lifestyle and the most popular post published in 2014 reflects that truth. To succeed today, you need to be tough-minded, you need to be resilient, and you need to be OK with less-than-perfect, figure-it-out-as-you-go solutions. Not an easy ask. But tough-mindedness pairs well with a positive outlook, as the work of Alan Loy McGinnis demonstrates here.

2. When Is Hubris a Good Thing?

Aiming too low and fearing disagreement—I don’t know if there’s a better recipe for mediocrity out there. As Seth Godin argues, we’ve take the wrong lesson from the Greek tragedies: Most of us need a little more hubris in our lives, not less. Get out there and dream big.

3. The 9 Biggest Fears of Starting a Business (and How to Overcome Them)

“Fear of starting a business is like fear of anything–it’s wrapped up in guilt, doomsday scenarios, and haywire mental programming.” List posts continue to do very well on Agile Lifestyle and 2014 was no exception. This one had a lot of thematic similarities with 11 Subtle Ways You Commit Self-Sabotage Without Knowing It, last year’s #2 post and now the #1 most popular post on the site.

4. 21 Bruce Lee Quotes: Be Water and Other Agile Thoughts

Bruce continues to inspire articles on self-actualization from his writings and it feels like we’re still discovering useful insights from the man. This was my take on “Be water” and twenty of his other famous quotes.

5. How Emergent Strategy Works (And How You Can Apply It to Your Life)

Who’d have thought Katy Perry was a shining example of personal and professional agility? There were so many great tidbits in this post, from umbrella strategies to career pivots. I’m proud of this one.

6. How Job Hopping Can Help You Be Happy (and How It Can Hurt)

Agility gets mistaken for wishy-washiness and indecisiveness. But it’s not those things. It’s about making deliberate choices. Job hopping is one of those topics where both sides of the generation gap can claim to have an angle on the truth.

7. The Beginner’s Guide to Finding Your Unique Value Proposition

Nothing brings me more satisfaction as a writer than when one of my articles gets cited as an authority for other sources. This one on unique value propositions (UVP) got picked up by Unbounce for their glossary of terms, which I thought was pretty neat. It’s also easily one of my longest longreads, coming in at 3,747 words.

8. 19 Productive Work Habits That Make All the Difference

If I had to point to one Agile Lifestyle article on time management to read, this would be it. Work habits are the key to unlocking your productivity—there’s just no way around it. This article is a master guide to everything else I talk about on this site.

9. 3 Shocking Ways Living Simply Will Make You Reconsider Privilege

Simplicity, in all its forms, still resonates with readers when I write about it on this site. I take that as a signal to post more on this topic, which I will in 2015. “Self-determination is the ability to make choices for your own life on a level playing field.” So why do we keep trading away dignity to chase paychecks?

10. This Hypothesis Will Make You Question Everything You Know About Money

I experimented with some different headline formulas this year, and this one seemed to strike a chord. Since the “relative income hypothesis” can be seen as a bit of a dry topic when you write it out in a headline, I thought the element of intrigue in the post’s title was needed. It worked.


There they are, the most popular articles of 2014!

Thank you for another excellent year—and if you’re just joining the site, have fun digging through the 2014 (and 2013 and 2012) archives. You’re in for a treat.

In 2015, we’ll continue to look at ways to simplify your life, be more productive, and do what you love for a living. Look forward to it!

Photo Credit: Lynn Friedman via Compfight cc

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