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Publisher's Summary

When anyone can start a business (when everyone is running their career like a business), it begs a question. This is your one chance at life, you can have anything you want, what is worth doing?

Most people don't know why they're doing what they're doing. They imitate others, go with the flow, and follow paths without making their own.

They spend decades in pursuit of something that someone convinced them they should want, without realizing that it won't make them happy.

Anything You Want is a manifesto about living life, appreciating enough, and doing what matters. It's most of what fabled entrepreneur Derek Sivers learned in ten years of starting and growing a small business, compacted into something you can listen to in an hour and a half. A life worth living starts with knowing your personal philosophy of what makes you happy and what's worth doing.

©2011 Derek Sivers (P)2011 Brilliance Audio, Inc.

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What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
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Story

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Short and poignant

Authentic, straight shooting look at one guys success story. He makes a point of prefacing his life and business experience with "here's what worked for me". The message I pulled from the book is, there probably is no magic bullet that if followed will make you successful. It's probably a good idea NOT to search for someone else's success and duplicate it, but rather create your own story keeping in mind that it is about your passion and desire to create something....not built around the desire to be wealthy. That part will come, after you follow your dream. His candid look at how he failed as well as how he succeeded made the story realistic and believable. I enjoyed his narration and didn't stop listening until the end.

26 of 28 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Outstanding!

One of the best audiobooks I've listened to. Significant value in wisdom per minute.

6 of 6 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Jay
  • Cambridge, MA, United States
  • 07-05-11

Inspiring and enjoyable read!

Derek has a real knack for storytelling and a unique perspective. I've always enjoyed his blog, but spending an hour and a half with his writing gave me a much better feel for his approach and mojo and vibe. I really enjoyed it, particularly having it also be in his voice.

I particularly liked his take on trust. I've spent a lot of time thinking through issues like he bring up with his employees, although mostly I think about co-founders. But it's a similar thing. I really want to trust people as much as I can, I think it's empowering and leads to a great vibe. But you do also have to look out for yourself, because there are people out there who will just burn you.

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Listened to it 3 times!

The headlines says it all, the book is too good and to the point that you will want to re-listen to it.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Gordon
  • Dawson Creek, BC, Canada
  • 10-20-11

Entertaining and well presented! A great read!

I loved this book and how it was presented. There was some great information and Derek makes it very clear how things worked or didn't. His honest approach but also entertaining approach made me want to read it again. This is one of those authors who I would follow and by every book he comes out with. I put him up in the SETH GODIN level and think he has alot to offer. Again, a fantastic read, very clear and easy to listen to. And I had a great laugh as well. He's pretty funny.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Wonderful and refreshingly NEW advice...

... for entrepreneurs who are also creative artists. You can succeed without discarding your values!

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • DS
  • 03-19-13

THE BEST GUIDE TO ENTREPRENEURS

This is the best guide to being an entrepreneur that I've ever read. Loaded with great tales of mistakes made and always in the context of the over-riding vision of serving the customer.... and remembering that you are doing whatever in order to be happy. Great, short book.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Awsome, succinct - well worth it.

Heaps of takeaways, in an honest and humble performance.

A bit of an odd business success story, but a great listen nevertheless!

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • David
  • Las Cruces, NM United States
  • 10-30-11

Not just for Entrepreneurs

The history of CD Baby is used to illustrate management points. Interesting history interspersed with management gems.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars

Conceited, but somewhat helpful

The internet is used to create a niche monopoly business based on exclusive content allowing the owner to disregard most “standard business practices.”
Although delivered in a gloating and conceited tone of “I can ignore all ‘rules’ because I lucked into a rare internet monopoly”, there are some helpful nuggets of information.
The chief concept is “do it for the customer”, one of a couple available entrepreneurial approaches. Nothing new there - Walmart does it. Others focus on employees, see Richard Branson. The helpful parts are found in applying a stringent simple model to that end (customer focus of a stringent simple model - as advocated by Jim Collins in Good to Great). Also that a business must serve some public need - in this case, inexpensive sales of indie artists’ music. See also Jim Collins, Built to Last.
BUT, like Google, which outworked its way into a monopoly, or like Microsoft, whose central platform/idea became a standard and thus a monopoly, there are dangers in assuming that the methods used by a company in a monopolistic vacuum are sound advice for any entrepreneur other than one operating in such a vacuum.
Advice such as - we don’t need to obey or heed human resource employment law, incorporate to protect owner assets, or bring in venture capital to expand is “all well and good” until a lawsuit is filed against you or you find you’re no longer in a monopolist vacuum.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Elephant908
  • 09-08-11

Good for the stories and fun all round

Derek is an interesting guy, have always been a fan of his blogs etc. He writes some excellent stuff about the music industry, probably some of the best stuff around.

This book is a collection of different articles and blog postings with some hilarious moments and great story telling.

If you're a young but creative business person, I say yay, but nay if you're more creative than business, because this book is aimed towards new, radical, original type business minded people.

He breaks down what business is:

For an idea to be good it has to be useful.

And this book is pretty useful, so yes, I recommend it to anyone associated with business particularly the programming, new internet based businesses, music industry types and record label people.

8 of 8 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Paul
  • 11-03-11

Enjoyable from start to finish

I've listened to numerous business audiobooks and rate this as one of my favourites. Derek really spills the beans on his entrepreneurial experiences, his business ideals and ethics are missing in many modern companies and what a shame that is.

6 of 6 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Steve K
  • 01-10-12

Worth a listen

Too many people give out 4 and 5 star ratings for my liking. For me 5 stars has got to be mind blowing and / or life changing (Zig Ziglar and Anthony Robbins fall into this category for me).

The author of this book seems sincere and doesn't promise to change your life just share his story of his success, and in fairness that what this book does. This is just a book about his success and the principles that worked for him and may not be applicable to your businesss.

As I said in the title worth a listen

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Colin
  • 10-28-11

An excellent, informative and enjoyable listen

This is possibly one of the best audiobooks I've heard. The author narrates in an engaging, light manner and openly explains how his business grew to be worth millions in spite of the fact that he didn't want it to.

His points on decision-making and changing tack are very well made, and his ongoing experience with staff and suppliers fresh and entertaining. I must've listened to this book 3-4 times back-to-back, it is just that good.

For me a huge plus was discovering the web site the book is based upon, and after only 1 week I've already sold my first music CD in the USA!

Highly recommended.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • anonymous
  • 10-20-11

fun factor

Interesting fun narration. like author being honest about his mistakes. you may be able to pick few ideas which would suit your business life

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • greg
  • 06-04-13

listened to it three times already

I've listened to some great books on audible so far, but I think this one was the most engaging for me.It's an open and frank discussion of the highs and lows of online business. But also a story of starting small and learning on the Job.Despite his eccentric business practices and lack of formal business training he made a great success with cdbaby,eventually selling for 22 million I think.A very entertaining and useful listen, really enjoyed it.Enough to listen to it three times in a row.:)

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Christophe
  • 01-13-13

On top of my playlist

This audiobook is pure enjoyment for 1,5 hours. I listened to it at least 10 times and I'm still not tired of it, I even bought the printed book after knowing the audio-version by heart !

It's a fantastic story, and Derek does a great job telling it like he does. I love the humor in this book, but no mistake : the information in "Anything you want" is very valuable.

I recommend this book to everyone !

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • maker-23
  • 01-23-16

Listen to this if you're a maker or entrepreneur

Really like Derek's take on things. As an introvert, I relate to his point of view as a maker and musician.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Cristina Schek
  • 07-25-15

Hard not to love!!

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

Most certainly! Because the book starts with: “This is most of what I learned in ten years, compacted into something you can read in an hour” - and delivers it! I learned more from this hour than from anything else so far.

What did you like best about this story?

Reading this book makes you feel good because it’s not really about anything you want: it’s about anything you CHOOSE to do and MAKE in the world for others: a far more powerful goal than merely doing things for yourself. This is actually a book about 'life', but the reading experience itself feels v. concrete.

Which scene did you most enjoy?

“But ‘revolution’ is a term that people use only when you’re successful. Before that, you’re just a quirky person who does things differently.”

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

Yes!

Any additional comments?

I keep re-listening & each time reveals new facets, like a new friend who's a great teacher. That's what I want from a book.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • l girling
  • 09-18-18

Slow start becomes very good. Only short but packed with entertainment. Try it

Slow start becomes very good. Only short but packed with entertainment. Try it it’s great

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • alison harley
  • 12-18-15

quick and direct loved it!

This is a great book to listen to over and over to reinforce the things you are learning and you are doing.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
  • Max
  • 06-04-18

Worth listening to just for Sivers' voice alone

A story about how Derek Sivers accidentally built a business that ended up becoming one of the most profitable in the music industry. Also, the book contains short personal development essays every second chapter. Apart from the soothing sound of Derek Sivers' voice, these were my favourite parts of the book

Worth reading if you're a business person or wanting to get into the world of business

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Rosie
  • 05-31-18

Exactly what I needed

Really glad that Derek read this himself - it wouldn’t have been the same any other way.
Recommended to anyone who is stuck, who has a million ideas, who feels like they “should” be further along than they are, for anyone who needs permission or for anyone who feels like they are pulled back on a massive slingshot but can’t get it to release.
I hope that the world produce more people who create businesses in this way. I intend to be one of them.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • James
  • 01-17-18

Best entrepreneurial book i've ever read. no joke

What did you like most about Anything You Want?

I've listened to this book 3 times. It's the best business book for creative people who just want to do good things and don't give a shit about the entire business world - but end up creating within the business world. It's fantastic. I'd like to meet Derek and have a cup of tea. Very well narrated and each lesson/story is just a beautiful insight into his world and how CD baby grew, but the values that he stood by throughout the process.

So much heart and soul!!!

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Ewen Wallace
  • 08-20-17

I could listen to this a thousand times.

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

Yup. He has been there, done that, got things right, got things wrong. This is the whole journey from go to whoa, what happened there? It's honest and humble and marvellously valuable. Wall-to-wall insights told as an engaging story.

What other book might you compare Anything You Want to, and why?

4 hour Work Week, Choose Yourself by James Altucher. Similar genre. This book is more personal and that's a good thing.

Which character – as performed by Derek Sivers – was your favourite?

um, Derek!

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

The end, I moved my phone out of my pocket and went back to the start of the book. It's consistently enthralling. I have listened to this book a lot of times and have never been tempted to skip parts of it.

Any additional comments?

I'd love to have a beer with Derek.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Rebecca Hallam
  • 02-03-17

great quick read.

So many great messages in one small book... easy to listen to over and over.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • amanda
  • 07-19-16

Highly recommended listening for entrepreneurs

loved it. Have heard Derek speak on Tim Ferriss podcast, and also enjoyed his writings on his website, so was excited to come across this self narrated audio book. was not disappointed!

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • rory
  • 06-27-16

Short and to the point

A very inspiring story. Derek has a lot of unconventional ideas on building a business, all of which revolve around the idea of building your own utopia.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • helen
  • 06-04-16

Love love love

Love this book, story and approach to business. Lots of unconventional ways of doing business. Huge fan of Derek Sivers.