New York Times Bestseller! On a street-smart journey through life and business, Cliff Michaels provides thought-provoking stories on The 4 Essentials (mindset, strategies, values, purpose), raising the bar life skills, global education, and career training. Through trials and triumphs, Cliff shares lessons from the edge as a dyslexic student who challenged the status quo by dropping out of USC at 19, then launching companies in real estate, education, and technology. Drawing on over 100 famous mentors from Socrates, Edison, and da Vinci, to Oprah, Branson, and Spielberg, Cliff empowers each of us to earn a real-world MBA (Masters in Basic Abilities). This is a fun, fast-paced read for anyone in search of passion, purpose, and results.

Author’s Note: “Originally titled “The 4 Essentials of Entrepreneurial Thinking: What Successful People Didn’t Learn in School,” I tweaked the title in 2017 based on fan letters around the world who discovered that the book was as much about misfits, mentors, and creatives as entrepreneurs.

Giving Back: With each sale, books are donated to students in need. Thanks for your support!” Cliff Michaels


My Lessons From The Edge

  1. A Misfit’s Journey Begins
  2. Life 101 & Street Smarts
  3. A Unique College Experience
  4. Welcome to The Real World
  5. Diary of a Dot-com (A Path to Purpose)

Essential 1) MINDSET

  1. Define Success and Happiness
  2. Unleash Your Entrepreneurial Soul
  3. Cultivate Creative Thinking
  4. Build a Result-Driven Practice
  5. Show Grit & Never Quit

Essential 2) STRATEGIES

  1. Take the Self-Discovery Path 
  2. Master Emotional & Communication Intelligence
  3. Embrace Chaos, Decisions & Change
  4. Work With Teams, Leaders & Mentors
  5. Focus, Set Goals & Manage Time

Essential 3) VALUES

  1. Live with Integrity 
  2. Display Sportsmanship 
  3. Exercise Humility 
  4. Manifest Love & Tolerance
  5. Show Gratitude 

Essential 4) PURPOSE

  1. Ignite Your Personal Power
  2. Follow Your Passion
  3. Develop a Healthy Mind, Body & Soul
  4. Give Back & Make a Difference
  5. Enjoy the Journey