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Joe Balcom

Hi, I’m Joe

Welcome to my online home. I write about living life against the grain, rejecting conformity, and battling complacency in the pursuit of meaningful work and financial freedom. This is what I like to call the unparalleled life.

If you’re a curious and ambitious person, you should definitely join the 500+ other people on my fast-growing newsletter, the Unparalleled Weekly. It’s one email a week that will challenge you to think in new ways, try new things, and embrace your unique authenticity.

    The purpose of this blog is to share the story of how to live life on your own terms, independent of external and mental constraints. In my mission to achieve this ideal, I focus on three core themes: Work, Travel, and the Mind.


    I write about Work because I have spent half of my life searching, unsuccessfully, for meaningful work. From selling fidget spinners to building and managing a multi-million dollar restaurant, my working life has amounted to little more than paying the bills. I no longer believe that is the best way to live the most capable years of one’s life. I no longer believe in working a job just for the money. I no longer believe income has to be linked to one’s time. We are entering a new age and new ways of thinking about work. We are entering a time when every single person has the potential to do meaningful work and become truly financially free. Through writing about Work, I intend to help shed light on the infinite possibilities available to each and every one of us.

    Here are some of my best Work essays:


    I write about Travel because I have spent the better part of the past decade discovering its incredible value. I’ve walked 500 miles solo across northern Spain. I’ve done a 8400-mile road trip across the American continent and back. I’ve experienced the unique lifestyles of the forest-dwellers of Costa Rica, the farmers of Southern Italy, and the seafaring Bermudians. Seeing new places, meeting different people, and understanding new perspectives has taught me not to run from unfamiliarity, but to embrace it wholeheartedly. Immersion in the experience of travel beats anything you could ever read in a book, watch in a video, or see on a map. I want to inspire you to see more of the world, so you can see more of yourself.

    Here are some of my best Travel essays:


    I write about the Mind because this is where my story begins. I was born to two parents, of little means and of lesser opportunity, both dealing with lifelong and often unmanageable mental illnesses. Growing up, it was up to my grandparents to instill discipline, and up to me to instill the rest. While I do not suffer from mental illness, I have a deep understanding of how it affects one’s life and the people in it. Mental health is a subject with a lot of questions and very few answers. I don’t have all the answers, but I do have a unique perspective, with experiences and ideas on practical philosophy and mental performance that will be a large part of the fabric of this site.

    Here are some of my best Mind essays:

    In addition to this blog, I’m on a mission to teach thousands of people to take risks, make hard decisions, and create a wellspring of meaning and fulfillment in their lives. In order to do that, I am building an ecosystem called Unparalleled Live. With a supportive community of like-minded explorers, you will have all the tools and the resources you need to say no to the status quo, take the risk you’ve been holding off, and truly live an unparalleled life. In the coming weeks, I’ll be going more in-depth on this vision. Stay tuned!

    You can also find me on Twitter.


    Joe Balcom

    “Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one’s courage.” -Anais Nin