My name, Bassam, means: the smiling one. I feel like I couldn’t have a better fitting name.
I was always encouraged to live an inquisitive life so I became a scientist of the human experience. I’ve tried, failed and tried again, but I was always taught to be accountable for the things I did or didn’t do. Over my journey, I’ve visited 47 countries, lived in 8 different cities, worked for 4 companies , started 3 of my own, received 2 degrees, wrote 2 screenplays, and have had 1 hell of great time doing it. Some of the highlights:
But none of these experiences were handed to me on a silver platter. In fact, in 2007 the company I was working for stole our last month’s pay and then filed for bankruptcy. We never saw that money. Due to various reasons, I was $50,000 in debt and was unemployed for five months. But I picked myself up, dusted myself off and 252 sent resumes later, I found a job and reinvented myself once again.
Somewhere along the way, people started to ask me how I did it. How did I always have the gall to take the risks, no matter what the odds? I’m accountable for the choices I make. That is why I wrote The Accountability Effect: The Book Your Excuses Don’t Want You To Read. I give it away free here on this site but when Seth Godin linked to it and when Chris Guillebeau raved about it, I knew I was hitting the right chord.
I believe that the gift of life, the chance to make of one’s destiny whatever one chooses, is the greatest gift that could ever be bestowed upon an individual. I live my life with that fire everyday, in awe of the world I get to experience. I’ve quickly learned that I am no one without the support of someone else. Colipera was my creation, my attempt to facilitate the collaboration of the greater good, to inspire us all to help each other reach our collective goals and to prove to ourselves that we are more powerful than we can possibly imagine. I am not Colipera. Colipera is a virus. I am only patient zero.
Goals are better accomplished and life is better lived, with other people. Accomplishing goals makes you happier, and happier people are better people.
But I also know how hard it is figuring out what to do in life, how to be accountable for those choices and how to find the right people around you. I’ve done most of what I’ve done while having a 9-to-5 job because I’ve been able to maximize my 5-to-9. So now I help others with 9-to-5 jobs who feel like they don’t have time for anything, regain control of their 5-to-9′s so they can start living the life they want to live.
I wake up every day feeling like the luckiest guy in the world for having the chances I’ve had in life and for the support of the friends and family I receive on a daily basis.
Currently, I live in Brooklyn, NY and you can usually find me running the stairs in Fort Greene Park.
Live, love and never stop learning. Keep tinkering.