Misfits and the Misfit Economy

Misfits and the Misfit Economy

Are you misfit? Feel like you’ve not fit into your life just yet? Or are working on some fringe endeavor? You might just be a misfit. Below you’ll find 2 perspectives on being a misfit, both powerful, in different ways. Two women experiencing what misfit is, through and through.

Lidia Yuknavitch talks about from the point of view of life, how she, a self-proclaimed misfit, managed to find her voice, and go after her dreams, even after major trauma and major life hurdles, and even after being homeless. Miss Yuknavitch spoke at TED Talks 2016, and you can hear her (and see her) in the video below.

“Give voice to the story only you know how to tell.”

Alexa Clay talks about the misfit side of business, about the misfit economy. She talks about the gray economy, underground economy, informal economy, black market economy, underground economy, makeshift economy, shadow economy, the misfit economy! It has toppled regimes. It is worth look at it and understanding it. She does a great job at that in this Talks at Google video. Even if this is a video/book from last year, it is still relevant (if not more so) then when it came out.

“We are all Leaders.”


Lidia Yuknavitch: How a misfit found her voice

To those who feel like they don’t belong: there is beauty in being a misfit. Author Lidia Yuknavitch shares her own wayward journey in an intimate recollection of patchwork stories about loss, shame and the slow process of self-acceptance. “Even at the moment of your failure, you are beautiful,” she says. “You don’t know it yet, but you have the ability to reinvent yourself endlessly. That’s your beauty.”

“My brains could be more important than my boobs”.

Her book:

The Chronology of Water

This is not your mother’s memoir. In The Chronology of Water, Lidia Yuknavitch expertly moves the reader through issues of gender, sexuality, violence, and the family from the point of view of a lifelong swimmer turned artist. In writing that explores the nature of memoir itself, her story traces the effect of extreme grief on a young woman’s developing sexuality that some define as untraditional because of her attraction to both men and women. Her emergence as a writer evolves at the same time and takes the narrator on a journey of addiction, self-destruction, and ultimately survival that finally comes in the shape of love and motherhood.


This talk was filmed at TED2016, February 2016.





Alexa Clay: The Misfit Economy

Alexa writes:  “From these misfits, we can learn much about ingenuity, about determination, about the innate human itch to create, build and exploit an opportunity.”

Take a look at the video, and read the book and see how this new idea of a misfit economy is not new at all, and how it’s been influencing the present and future of the “regular” economy.

A book that argues that lessons in creativity, innovation, salesmanship, and entrepreneurship can come from surprising places: pirates, bootleggers, counterfeiters, hustlers, and others living and working on the margins of business and society.

Who are the greatest innovators in the world? You’re probably thinking Steve Jobs, Thomas Edison, Henry Ford. The usual suspects. This book isn’t about them. It’s about people you’ve never heard of. It’s about people who are just as innovative, entrepreneurial, and visionary as the Jobses, Edisons, and Fords of the world. They’re in the crowded streets of Shenzhen, the prisons of Somalia, the flooded coastal towns of Thailand. They are pirates, computer hackers, pranksters, and former gang leaders. Across the globe, diverse innovators operating in the black, grey, and informal economies are developing solutions to a myriad of challenges. Far from being “deviant entrepreneurs” that pose threats to our social and economic stability, these innovators display remarkable ingenuity, pioneering original methods and practices that we can learn from and apply to move formal markets. This book investigates the stories of underground innovation that make up the Misfit Economy. It examines the teeming genius of the underground. It asks: Who are these unknown visionaries? How do they work? How do they organize themselves? How do they catalyze innovation? And ultimately, how can you take these lessons into your own world?


Alexa Clay – The Misfit Economy
Recorded in Los Angeles, July 2015 at Talks at Google

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