Danica Patrick Pretty Intense Podcast

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Ryan Holiday

by Jennifer Cawley
November 12th 2020

Ryan Holiday is the author of several New York Times bestselling books, most recently Stillness Is the Key (Oct 2019), which debuted at #1 on the New York Times and Wall Street Journal bestsellers ... More

We're a dog tied to a cart so the car is moving and you can either like, lay down and be dragged. Or you can sort of run alongside like it's your call. And so the idea that, like they're these sort of forces operating on us on the universe that are far beyond us, you know, whether you believe that's like, sort of God or the gods or just the logos. To me, it kind of all gets you to the same place, which is like your along for the ride. Even if you just believe in evolution, Well, that's a force that's way outside your control. That's acting on you and humanity at this very moment. So in 12 step groups there like like the second step is like accepting the higher power. They're like, we don't care what the higher power is like. It could be anything. Just the point is like you have to accept that it's not you. I believe that each and every

one of us has the power within ourselves to create the life that we really want, and I want to help give you the tools to make that happen. I'm Danica Patrick and I'm pretty intense. Today. On the show is Ryan Holiday. He is a writer. He has over eight books. His most recent one just came out called Lives of the Stoics. He is, ah, philosopher. And I just have such a curiosity for all things about life and to me when you, as I say philosophy eyes, which he did tell me is a real word. Um, you're basically contemplating You're asking why and you're asking how and eso That's what we did in this episode. We talked about life, death. What makes you happy? Why people are the way they are. Mommy and Daddy issues. I hope this episode leaves

you with a greater curiosity for philosophy and what it can add to your life. I miss traveling. I know, I know. I was just thinking about like, how how long it's been since I've been inside an airport. Oh, really? Yeah, because you don't need to travel because you don't want to go to an airport. Well, so So I we haven't traveled at all because the pandemic and then, uh so I think I don't think I've been in an airport since March 8th. Yeah, Yeah, that makes sense. I mean, they really like it really happened right about then because I was on a trip in Peru, and, um, it was an emergency trip home on the 12th. It was like, got there, and it's like everything's fine. Don't think about what's going on. And then the next day, it was like, Oh, so I don't know, It seems like things or something seems to be popping up on my

phone, and then the day after that was like, Okay, they might start to shut countries down, and then the next day was like, We have to make that decision. Okay, We're gonna go back tomorrow. And then it was like middle of the night was you have to be out of the country by 9 a.m. or 10 a.m. S. So it was like in the middle of the night and you had to get up and find a car in the middle of Peru and, you know, it was crazy. But I missed that. I missed that kind of travel. I miss international travel. Yeah, I know that I was I was watching a movie or something the other day and they were, like, on a beach somewhere. And I was like, Wow, like I was supposed to go to all these different places over the next six months, and that just didn't happen. And it doesn't feel like it's going to go back to normal anytime soon. Why were you supposed to be going to other countries? Just speaking, like, just just talks for the book. So I had, like, Australia and then, like, a tour through Europe. And so I had, like, a bunch of stuff. Mm. On? Uh, yeah, we did one. We did one road trip. We drove

out to see my my in laws in Southern California. So we've We've left the house one time in six months, so it's a little weird. Do you have old family, like are your are your Are your parents old? My parents are in their sixties. Uh, but we have. So we have two little kids. I have one grandmother who's in, like, a nursing home, so we have been able to see her. But But my kids, I'm totally fine, like as a writer. This is like, the best thing that ever happened to me. Like I don't like to do stuff. So, uh, this is like like I don't have to go to coffee. I don't have to go to meetings. I don't have to do anything. So I'm like, I'm great. But we have, like, a four year old and a one year old and so that we were like, they have not seen any people in six months. This can't be good for them. So we went and saw in laws, but so you just kind of like a would you say you're like a classic writer, introvert. Um, yeah, I think so. I mean, I'm definitely an introvert and

and like, like they say, like you're an introvert extrovert, based on whether you get energy being around people or you lose energy being around people, that's like the best test test. So, like when you like Goto, because I think it's different when you're performing like when I'm on stage, that's different. But I bet like when you're racing or when you're, you know, in from an audience or on a TV show or something that that Z, that's not draining the same way. But like if you went to a conference, do you feel like excited by that? Or are you drained afterwards? I'm very drained. I don't know. I get energized. All right, so that's that's probably the difference. Introvert, Verse, extrovert. But so but I I've been also told that I'm interested and I love being alone, like I have no problem being alone. I, like, have all of my things that I do. And I'm happy to do them. And I have two dogs and two kids, but I have two dogs. And so I know how toe be alone. And it's really easy and great and peaceful. But I am interested. It's interesting in

the introvert extrovert, because I get really energized doing like speaking engagements, Um, doing podcasts like like engagement on a deep level. So right. So because when I'm on stage to I'm a really open person. So I really share. So I really, like, get going. But if I have to go do something monotonous like sign autographs or small talk is the death of me. Yeah. Yeah, like a cocktail party. I hate or like a nightclub I hate, but if you told me like you, me and five other people were gonna have, like a six hour dinner. That sounds like amazing. Yes. So I love philosophy, like I don't even know if it's a word. But I love to philosophy eyes. Yeah, of course. That's a word, is it? I mean, I love it. I literally dreams and aspirations. One day of this is like personal. But one day of finding someone that I could just, like, spend the rest of my life with that I sit on the couch and we just

, like, riff on some random topic or like a couple random topics. I literally just told my friends this last night. Um, like that to me, is so cool, because I just I'm so bored by the monotonous and the depth and like, spiraling off into all different possibilities of, like, how things could go It's so interesting to me. And so I heard you describe yourself as intense, and I Well, actually I wrote a book called Pretty Intense. My podcast is called Pretty intense. I am like, if people wonder like people meet me and I'm like, Wow, she seems kind of intense. It's because I am When did you know, like, when did you know that about yourself? You know, it's weird. I don't I don't know. I do remember, like, several years ago. Um, it was sort of a weird sort of hit me in two ways. So one, um, someone had told me that they were talking about me with someone else and that

that that that they were talking about how intense I was. It didn't really occur to me that other people were talking about me when I wasn't around. Like, for whatever reason, that didn't that that struck me as weird. And then it was like, Oh, also, what they think is that I'm intense, but it makes sense because I tend to be very committed to stuff very sort of unswerving about it. And then it's not that I'm, like, sort of blunt and like a cruel way. But I do. I do tend to sort of say exactly what I think. And if I think something is a bad idea, I'm gonna say it's a bad idea. I think it's a good idea. I'm going to say it's a good idea. I don't like sort of dancing around stuff, if that's not necessary. And so I think you know we live in a world where most people are kind of apathetic. Most people just sort of go along with things. Uh, you know, most people don't actually like what they do, and so they just sort of do it for money or they do it because they're good at it or whatever. And so I think when you find someone who's who knows what they want

is good at it on believes in it, uh, that can come off as very, very strong. Is it you were talking about, like, dancing around things, and I relate to this. So is it because the truth just seems so obvious to you? Definitely. And and I think because I tend to have thought about the things that I have opinions about, I think a lot of people are just sort of winging it. Um, So, like when I when I care about something I actually do. I think one of the things that makes you a writer is your like, you're not good, necessarily, like in in an off the cuff conversation about things you really want to go like, figure it out. You're like I have this sort of vision of myself as a kid, like trying to convince my parents of something or talk to them about something and then, like not getting it. So me, like saying to myself, Well, I'm gonna go to my room

and and figure this out and then you'll see, Do you know what I mean? Like a like a sort of, like all you're not understanding me. I'm not figuring. I'm not quite clear on what it is that I think I want to say here. So I'm gonna go, like, get it perfect off by myself, You know, like because that's what writing is is like you have a thought, but it's like what is the perfect way to express that thought in a way that it's very hard to argue against? And so that's kind of the That's kind of the writing. That's the writer's mind. E No, you I know you very I Let me ask this question as part of more con. I mean, I obviously know you're smart, and so this is part of it. But are you very hard to sway once you've major decision? I think so. There's a there's a great expression. I heard on dime forgetting who said it, but they said strong opinions loosely held. So it's like I do tend

to find what I think, you know. Believe it emphatically express it emphatically. But I also think sticking to something and not being able to change your mind is not super admirable. So I I think it's like you wanna be passionate and strong and clear about what it is that you think but then also realized that that that was made based on a snapshot of information and the information is always changing. So I do try to think, you know, like, politically, I've changed my mind on a bunch of things. Personally, I've changed my mind and a bunch of things, and I tend to think that someone who doesn't change their mind very often is probably That's probably more of a vice than a virtue. What are some big things you've changed your mind on? I mean, I grew up very in a sort of a conservative household, so, you know, I was my parents were Republican. That's sort of the beliefs that I held. Um uh, and then, obviously, you know, sort of watching the world go direction that it's in. I

find a lot of these things to be sort of very alarming. And I mean, I've Here's the way I think about it. I think I'm less sort of politically inclined, like, Hey, this is what Republicans believe. And this is what liberals believe or whatever and think more about, like, what is the in philosophy that we call this going to first principles like, what is the what is the core underlying sort of fact or standard and then being willing to change your mind? You know, if if issues shift or a fact shift, But actually you haven't changed your mind. Other people have changed. You know what I'm saying? So, like, for instance, uh, my my father was a police officer, so I grew up as a kid, obviously being very pro police, uh, you know, sort of hearing these things right. And I generally am a person who would support the police. But at the same time, when you see you know what is clearly a

very really issue in our society, you have to go. Wait. I'm not like pro police or anti police. I'm I'm pro, you know, people's rights being respected and provided that the police do that, I'm for it. And then the second that that that obligation is, you know, uh, you know, violated then? Then I switched. Does that make sense? Yeah. I mean, as in my mind, I'm thinking to myself, Mm, there's almost no set then, right? When you're open, it's like you're permeable in every way and, you know, it's kind of So what then guides your new belief system, Right? If you if you don't hold steadfast and true to anything forever, then where is the like, What are the pillars of you? Like what? What are what guides your belief system? No, that that's I think that's the ultimate question of philosophy, right? Like religion basically

says, Hey, this is what God says you're allowed to do or not do right like this is sort of supernatural law, and and so you know, if you don't believe that or you do believe that it doesn't really matter, you could still see that What philosophy is is essentially an attempt to answer some of those same questions. But but not from a supernatural point of view. It's za sort of logically get down to what sort of right and wrong and what you should do or shouldn't do. So it happens to be nice. Stoicism, which is a philosophy I think about and write about. The core of the four virtues of stoicism are actually the same as what In Christianity, we call the cardinal virtues. So So so for the stoics, the four virtues air courage, moderation or self discipline and then justice and wisdom. So so again to go back to this police thing, which I realize is probably so incendiary that people who don't agree aren't even listening

. But like if you go Oh, the core thing here is justice. What is right? What is fair? What is like sort of each human beings, you know, inalienable rights. And, you know, uh, what's our responsibility in that sense that let's say the police brutality issue becomes much clearer because you're not going? Oh, I come from a police family. Oh, my identity is tied up in me being a Republican, and Republicans believe this on the issue. You're just looking at the facts and you're going, Hey, I find this to be repugnant on and evil and I'm making no judgments about, you know, the system as a whole. But I am. It is very clear to me that, you know, X, y and Z needs to be done to prevent things like this from happening. So So I think if we say sort of virtue those virtues or what's guiding you, then you know, like think about courage, right? Courage

is a pretty clear concepts. And I was writing about this this morning. Um, So there's this dialogue between Socrates and uh, and this man and and Socrates is saying I'm getting way nerdy for you. But you said you like eso. Socrates is what is courage and he says, endurance of the the answer is endurance of the soul. And so you're like, Okay, that makes sense. But then Socrates goes, But what if you're enduring for the wrong thing or what if you're enduring because you're foolish and you don't know, you know? So So it does get really tricky. So I think the idea is you kind of have these thes Touchstones or these sort of, um, big ideas and then the struggle as a philosopher and as a human being, who's not trying Thio, you know, be a bad person is like, how do you then actually apply them in individual situations

? Mhm. How do you, uh, you know, a lot of reflection, A lot of thinking, Ah, lot of soul searching. But I you know, what's weird is is I think, intuitively we often know what the right thing is. But then what intervenes is like, Well, is this good for me or not? You know, it was the intuitive is intuitive. What is into it? How does intuitive play into stoicism like, How does it does it does it because it's it's really like it's sort of energetic, right? And does that even play the early stoics? And what I love about Western philosophy is just even though thousands of years of passing all these things have changed like they were still regular people. And so, like the analogy they use all the time is like wrestling and boxing and javelin throwing and archery. And it's like sort of at the outset. You know, there is a lot of kind of explicit training

, and you're and you're you know, you're like, Okay, in this situation, you do this, and in that situation. You do that. There's a lot of rules. But as you get better and better at it, as the training sort of comes into muscle memory and I'm sure you experience this, it sort of gets into a deeper level of consciousness where you kind of just know. But you know what I mean? Like, you're not If you if if somebody could have asked you in the middle of your race, What are you doing right here? What are you thinking about? I imagine a lot of the times the answer is sort of like nothing like you've got. You've gotten to a place where you are completely sort of still and locked in, and you are operating on almost a different plane of consciousness. I actually have said that exact thing that So here's my example. Um, about being in a different state of consciousness, I truly believe this happens probably to almost all athletes. Um, maybe you could speak on that because I know you speak to athletes

and you go speak for, you know, toe football teams, and I'm not sure what else. I've only heard football, but anyway, you speak to teams and So here's my example. I was racing at Martinsville a couple of years ago when I was still racing and I was sick. And so I took some day quell first thing in the morning, and then I have breakfast. By time I walked out the door of the bus. I was like, Whoa, I feel drunk like I was like, Oh, shit. Like I've got to go Dr. Martens, though, which is this tiny little half mile track like slowing up, speeding down circle Circle circle if you can get out and feel dizzy almost from this track. And so I go and I go practice. I'm like, top 10, No problem. Feel super easy. I don't even notice it in the car. I get out and it's like I feel like my awareness for things comes and really like very, um, mundane, simple kind of ways. But I was like, Man, I don't think that when we

drive were actually operating, Um, consciously, where we operate in our waking everyday life now you can't you can't be. So I was. I was looking at this analysis of baseball. They were saying that as basically as the ball is leaving the pitcher's hand, the batter has to be swinging. So like the eso, you have about 400 milliseconds to decide whether you're going to swing at a pitch or not. And so the idea that the batter is sitting there thinking about any of this is preposterous. It has to be operating at a much deeper level, because by the time you could consciously go okay, he's throwing a curveball and you know, statistically, here's what I do when you look like you can't possibly be thinking at that level because you know you have less than that amount of time to do it. And so you know, we think

when when we look at the athlete standing there at the plate, we're going Oh, you know, he or she is great because, you know, look at that, look at their their muscles or look at their form or or you know, you know they have this quick thio quick twitch fiber this or that. We're actually all those things matter to a certain degree, but But the strength and the muscles air Onley relevant after the ball has connected with the bat. And so you know, you see these big, like, honking guys up there, and actually, it's It's whatever allowed him to make a snap decision in 400 milliseconds, that is the competitive advantage. And so, yeah, we often sort of miss what's actually happening there. So what is that, then? I mean, I think I think it's well, I think it ZMA sel memory in the brain being a muscle. It's patterns. Um, you know, it's experience. So So you're operating at this level

of knowing things that you don't even actually explicitly? No. But your question really, like sort of goes to this core idea that again Plato and others were thinking about thousands of years ago, which is like, Maybe there's some sort of mystical, spiritually element to it to like like, here's the question. So, like, I'm sitting down to write where these words coming from, right? Like like how it just comes from somewhere like the weird part for me is like So I wrote this morning, and then this afternoon I'll either run, swim or bike, and inevitably, at some point in that, I'll be thinking about whatever and words will just sentences will just come into my mind And so I think, you know, in earlier times we would have said This is like a gift from God or this is, you know, angels or spirits or something, and I don't totally know where I come down on that. I just I just know that it's it's

not operating on a conscious level. And so, um, there's kind of a mystery to that. I mean, but one of Plato's sort of paradoxes is like it had. How does scientific discovery work? Like, How do you know you're discovering something if it's never been found before? Like, how do you know that you found it. And so his You know, he's sort of saying like, Well, maybe it's because you knew it all along. You just didn't know that you knew it. It za total mind. Fuck. Do you believe in reincarnation? Um, I don't necessarily believe in reincarnation, but I do kind of believe in this sort of passing of torches from, you know, like generation to generation. So, like like Andi? I was just writing about this to like, you know, people will go like, Oh, you know, this is a pandemic. It's so awful, we can't survive. We are descended literally and figuratively from people who have

survived so much worse stuff, right? Like when I think about what my grand parents went through, two of my grandparent's are were first generation Americans that came here as refugees from Europe. Um, you know, I think about what? What? Everyone who's led up to this moment went through for this moment to be possible. Like, of course, were we? That sort of spirit is animating us in some way. I feel like, um, have you read Cormac McCarthy's book The Road? No. Oh, maybe you've seen the movie, but it's this sort of post apocalyptic, uh, sort of novel about a young man and his son kind of at the end of the world. It's like this sort of dystopian hellscape, and it's really a fucked up book to read right now, But you're actually have, uh, he, um this is the book. We get it. This is the book

. It's very good. Okay, I'm on the shelf above me. I keep on like, my favorite books, but anyways, he keeps talking to his son. He keeps talking to his son about carrying the fire and his point is that, um, you know, like, our job is to carry the fire, like from sort of And and so the metaphor in the book is like the father is, you know, passing the fire on to the next generation and the fire in the book is like goodness right. This is like this horrible world where, you know, everything has fallen to pieces and, you know, it's like this, you know, people are vicious and awful to each other. And he's talking about carrying the fire. And somebody sent me a lighter, the other not that longer. That just has carried the fire. But the idea the idea being that that this is this sort of unbroken chain, um, of of, you know, I do believe in that. Okay, but that doesn't explain the awareness. It doesn't explain how you know. It doesn't explain where the words come from. So

the other thing that comes to mind is, if you believe in cellular memory, like ancestral cellular memory that is in you, that maybe could make it otherwise, it is. The other thing I think of is collect like a consciousness. It Z you know the idea that we're all one and that, you know, I don't know how far down the hippie road you go, but like Akashic records as in like if if you can tap into sort of energy, everything that's ever happened and will happen exists as a frequency. And so I don't know where do you fall into any of that? No, I I love that stuff. And you might think that the Stoics would not be into it. But, you know, like the Stokes and the epicurean, too. 2500 years ago. Basically, we're talking about atoms like they had some under rudimentary understanding of atoms and they, you know, obviously they talked about sort of spirits and ancestors. The Stoke the Stokes have this concept of sort of sympathy

, which is this idea that we're all sort of connected as part of this larger, this larger system that every person has a role to play and that this the stove is kind of believe that these roles were assigned to us by fate. So that's that's the other kind of thing that I, you know, the the Stoics were Stokes. Basically, it's something they believe so much in predetermination. But They kind of believe that like they talked about this idea of the logos, which in Christianity appears in the Bible, just means the word or the way. It's like kind of the energy of the universe. It's like whatever God's Will is, that's what the idea is. So for the stoics they were talking about, um, they were there. Their metaphor for the logos, things comes, things comes from, I think, Zeno Zeno saying, like were a dog tied to a cart. So the car is moving and you can either like, lay down and be dragged. Or you can sort of run alongside

like it's your call. And so the idea that, like they're these sort of forces operating on us on the universe that are far beyond us, you know, whether you believe that's like, sort of God or the gods or just the logos. To me, it kind of all gets you to the same place, which is like your along for the ride. And and and so I kind of see that that energy creeping into all things Do you believe that? Yeah, I dio No, I believe in some version of that. I mean even even if even if you're like, totally, uh, even if you just believe in evolution, well, that's a force that's way outside your control. That's acting on you and humanity at this very moment. So I think, you know, like in in 12 step groups there like Like the second step is like accepting the higher power. They're like, we don't care what the higher power is like. It could be

anything. Just the point is like, you have to accept that it's not you and so that's kind of where I am. You're an atheist, right? I'm not like an eighth. I think when I was growing up, I was an atheist. Well, when I was growing up, I was Catholic. And then I like a lot of I would say that, E I would say This is like a lot of guys who think they're smart. You end up like reading Richard Dawkins or Sam Harris, and then you end up, you know, like around college, you kind of become an atheist because it seems so much smarter and you know better than everyone else. So I kind of went through a phase there, and I would say as I've gotten older, I've come mawr towards a place of agnosticism, which is which is not that I it's It's not that I don't think there is or isn't a God, it's that I don't know, you know, like I just don't know. And I think there's there's human, much more humility in that position than the assertion that you know, that

kind of goes back to that whole. Like, how do you what air your what are your core beliefs that you hold steadfast to You're still there on that wishy washing place, right? Oh, no, I think I think it's the opposite of what she washes. So so like, So my this is this is my sort of tick. So I think Christianity is basically again saying, like, do this, don't do that. You know, here's the word of God Accept it or don't accept it. And then, you know, the reward is heaven and the punishment is hell. And I think the stoke philosophical argument centering around a lot of the same sort of do's and don't. But the argument is, um, if you if you don't do these, if you do these things or you don't do the right things, you will live in hell. So I don't I don't believe in necessarily an afterlife. Although I again I don't know. I'm not like, Hey, the reason I'm trying to be a good person

. The reason I don't cheat on my wife for the reason I don't murder people is not because I am worried about going to hell. I'm worried about the reality I would inhabit the person I would be if I did those things. So I have a very strong sense of, like what I will do and won't dio it. My my reason for it is maybe a little bit my e Maybe I'm having more of a foot in both camps. So in that, in that sense, maybe there's some wishy washing us. It's okay. I think it's fun. It makes for way better conversations. S o. Do you believe in having in hell then? I don't. Okay, so you know about Pascal's wager? No. So Pascal's wager is this, like, 15 hundreds? He started very influenced by the stoics, Um, sort of a brilliant, clever guy. But his argument is that, uh that that that to be a bad person is a really

big bet because you don't know whether there's a heaven or hell. So you his his argument is it's a safer bet to be a good person to not sin or whatever. Um, because because the upside is is very high, and the downside is also very high. So it's that's a potential of heaven. And how is making it not worth it, which still gets you to the same result? Yeah, that's that's That's the idea. So I'm sort of sort of there. So what makes someone a good person versus a bad person? And we're using this super loosely like right? Like, obviously, it's a sliding scale in all kinds of ways. But, you know, I mean, I've heard you describe sort of like having like, mental discipline and, like spiritual bankruptcy, right Or you know what? What kind of makes you smart versus connected to your soul? Teoh. You know the feelings and knowing where the words come from all of that stuff

. Like what? What kind of what leads you down those paths? Well, that's the interesting thing about stoicism, right? If stoicism is in some respects kind of the mastery of your emotions, the mastery of your urges. You know, your ability to have sort of rational thought All these things you could use those things to just be a better bad person, right? Like you could It could make you like a better killing machine or something, right? It could make you like a superhuman Andi. And I don't I don't that just doesn't strike me is winning. And I think the Stokes would say, Like when you really look at the lives of people who are like that No, it doesn't seem like they're underneath the surface, not having a good time. So? So I think that the purpose of the philosophy is to be a good person, that sort of some, um bottom. The highest good of stoicism is is virtue. It's being good. What is what

is that? I mean, we could have a big discussion about it gets complicated. I think markets really is his line, which I think about. He says the fruit of this life is good character and works for the common good. So that strikes me as a pretty good definition of a good person, and you could probably flip it and get, ah, definition of a bad person really easily. Which is, ah, person of low character. Sort of morally, ethically, you know, uh, you know, they're unreliable. They lie etcetera and then are primarily motivated by selfish ends. You know, don't make the world a better place. Don't help other people, um, sort of see the world as a zero sum game. So on and so forth. How did they turn out like that? Like, how does someone do that? How does someone live? Ah, life where you know, you have the extreme of murder and things like that, right? But then you have, ah, lower scale of, like, not respecting someone and being selfish or, you know, that's again. It's a sliding scale. But what

What kind of put someone in that world where you know they don't live a virtuous life like you mean? How do you wake up Donald Trump? Yeah. How like, like, how do you How do you wake up and, you know, sort of think exclusively about yourself, You know, sort of have no standards that you adhere to. No line you won't cross, you know. How does that happen? I mean, I think like I think it's a couple things one I mean, at the core of it. Almost all these people were failed by their parents and some sort of profound, painful way. Um, on Ben, I I also think that we need to have empathy and go Do we not all have that inside us? And if if we've been instructed differently or it had different experiences, might we have gone down a different path? So I try not to be sort of super quick to judge in that sense. But

But I think I think what what often is at the core of these things is a very intense valuing of the wrong thing. Right, So, like, um, for athletes, right is are you valuing money? Victory, fame, you know, domination. Those air traits that can serve you can certainly serve you well in your profession. Just that they serve you. They would serve me well in my profession. But but in Onley, in the shortest terms, sense of it, right, And that enormous cost. And and so, um, I think we often I was I had Manu Ginobili on my podcast this morning. Actually, when we were talking about this. And I was fascinated. I was like, Okay, like, you know, Michael Jordan is 1767 rings. Think six and you've won four, You know, is there is the distinction

between those two. Is it? Is it like, did he just have mawr of a killer instinct than you like? I was like, When I'm around you, I don't feel like you're going to rip my throat out. You know what I mean? Like like, Is that the distinction like, is there is there like, a level that you have to go to to get toe? And I'm fascinated by that because I'm really driven in my career, and I've been successful in it. But you always see, like, somebody a little bit above you. And I think you can get you can you can see that and go. Okay. The way to get there is to do these things that I may be no or wrong or I know hurt people. Or you can say I'm gonna focus this energy on the craft of it. The love of it. I'm gonna feel grateful for what I have and kind of if it happens, it happens sounds like ego is the enemy. I mean, it really does, because it's short egos taking care of the short term and not the long term, right? It's gonna make you feel

good in the very moment. So then I wonder to be honest, you know, when you're doing wrong or when you're do you So do they really know? Like, if someone's doing that, do they? Are they actually consciously aware, how much of the time are these people actually making decisions that they're consciously aware that they're doing wrong versus operating from this embedded, learned system that they earned from their mom and dad? Cause I 100% agree. And this is with love that every mom and dad is gonna screw up their kid a little? You're gonna love them too much. You're gonna love them too little like there's no there's no you're not going to get out of this alive as a parent without having Thio have Cem empathy for yourself because you're going to screw a kid up a little bit. Yeah, of course. I mean, I think

right is the person sort of overtly or deliberately doing wrong or they getting what they are they doing or getting what they think they need? Andi, I think that's that, Z, that's a question, right? Is is Trump lying? Or is Trump just sort of intuitively emotionally almost incapable of telling the truth about thing? And this isn't even political discussion. We're just saying like, Hey, when when he's saying this was the biggest inauguration crowd in history? Is that ah, lie? Or is that just coming from a place of such profound insecurity and sort of a need to always be better than everyone else, that it's almost stronger than the truth? And and so I think it's both. But to me, that goes to the point of, um, the punishment for that person is not Oh, this isn't gonna work out for you because it may work out for you. The punishment is

in some cases for some people getting everything that you want, right? It's like, um, would you trade places with that person or, you know, like pick pick. Whoever in your mind was like the athlete or the competitors who embodied all of the things that we're talking about in a not good way. Would you wanna live in their head and in their hard like Absolutely not. And so I think that when I'm saying like Hell is here on Earth, I think that's that's where a lot of people choose to live or or are forced to live because of the the priorities that they have. That would be my belief system is that heaven and hell is on Earth like it's not a destination. I remember asking someone a long time ago. I was like So what do you think? And this is when I start getting really interested years and years ago about, you know, I've always been I would call myself. I think it's called Omine is, um where you have a belief. You probably know what it iss. No, no, it's But it's

a belief in all religions. You don't believe in any religion but that there's truth in all of them. And so, you know, I very much got curious about, you know, the how the how we operate as humans and how we operate in a spiritual slash religious way. And Andi? I asked. So when I said Well, what's heaven and what's hell? He said, Well, heavens up in Hell's down and I was like, I have to break up with you. It's just that there was no thought put to it. And as I stated, clearly stated the beginning. I'm much more interested in the thinking of it. So eso I believe in that. And so you know, then it makes you even wonder. Do they even know that they're living in hell? And do they do they know? Yeah, you know, uh, if they don't, then are they right? Yes. Like

is the curse in all of this self awareness and that some sometimes people are protected by their own either ignorance or self absorption. And in a sense, I really think that's what ego is. Ego is this kind of? And we're not talking about the sort of Freudian or psychological ego, but the kind of colloquial ego ego is really like a They say this in a That's sort of a conscious separation from that. It's like a bubble or a shield. And so to the outside world, that often looks like confidence. But it's actually coming from a much more vulnerable place, and and that that it is, it is preventing you from experiencing and feeling, Because if it were to go away, you would feel really awful. And so I think, you know, Yeah, its's this kind of gonna go away if if you're if the ego were to go away or if the ego were to go away and the self awareness were

to creep in instead it's kind of like like like when people go like, Oh, but look at all these successful people who were egomaniacs or had big egos. I sort of go. Sure. I'll give you a big list of, you know, great musicians who were also drug addicts like that. The that wasn't why they were a drug are sorry. The the drugs weren't why they were great at music it and ultimately that the the addiction ends up often killing the person. But it's that the drugs were a way of not having to feel painful things. Um, that that that, you know, a sober person would have to deal with. And so I think ego on dso sometimes just, you know, whatever these things we get obsessed with, like, you know, I think for driven people And maybe you felt this way, you know, you feel like you feel like when I get there when I get to the top of the mountain Like when you When I sell this many books or I win this award or I you know, I

you know, it's like, Hey, when I when you know my first race and then when I get you know, then when I have three of them, then when I have the best season of all time, like you tell yourself like it's this thing And once I get this thing and I won't feel this way anymore and that's just, you know, you can see why, from an evolutionary standpoint, that's a very productive delusion. But it's, you know, it doesn't make anyone happy in the end. Yeah, I've suffered from a little destination syndrome for sure in different ways, both professionally and personally, probably especially personally. To be honest, I'm a lot more disconnected from the outcome with professional than I am with personal, which is probably why that one's been successful in the other one hasn't been a successful. You mean like when I meet the right person or that kind of Yeah, yeah, they're gonna take care of everything. Is gonna be great and you know they'll will support each other. And, you know, yet I, you know, resided in a little co dependency then. And so you know, so is feeling criteria

to not be in your ego then feeling emotions, feeling, feeling, pain, feeling deep things, feeling sadness, feeling is feeling part of the barometer. That's a I haven't thought about that. Yeah, sure. I think ego is almost inherently an unfeeling place, or it's it's just complete self absorption at the expense of all other feelings particularly. And most commonly, you know, the feeling of of empathy, you know, giving a shit about other people. Um, well, they say that, like narcissists lack empathy like That's one of sort of like the core core qualities about a narcissist is that they just can't feel yeah, and and And by the way, that's why when I write about you go, why it's so dangerous in the arts or in, like, music or in writing or in business

. Um, is because what you're doing inherently requires empathy or else it won't work for anyone. Like, if you're making a song, that's if you're like writing a song and you have your head so far up your own asked that you can't conceive of anyone else's reality that that song is gonna be meaningless, right? Like if I'm sitting writing a book. And I'm so obsessed with my own pain in my own issues and my own stuff, I'm not gonna It's not gonna land because it z for an audience of one. And so I do think empathy is that poor I was I was re reading meditations and, you know, you read, you read things many, many times, and sometimes you miss something that was right there the whole time. Let me actually let me see if I find it, I might find the whole passage. He, uh this is so Marcus release begins. Meditations like, really, incredibly with, like, a list of all the things that he learned from other people, which I love

, like, so much like, That's such an incredible thing for the most powerful man in the world to do Where Sextus? Um, by the way, here's the thing. This whole section is on the gods. He's thinking what he learned from the gods. Where's Sextus? Uh, he says, um uh, not to display anger or other emotions to be free of passion, yet full of love. And that that quote just hit me really hard. Ah, couple weeks we don't have been thinking about it a lot, since so, like way Think of stoicism is the absence of emotion and that, you know, it means you're not angry. You're not sad. You don't grieve, you don't lost, you don't care. And I think that's totally wrong. I think he's saying You're stripping out the other emotions and you're replacing it with what we were just talking about, which is empathy and compassion and care for other people. How is that different

? Well, how does so stripping away? So isn't that part of feeling like empathy and all that stuff like, What do you stripping away to get that you're You're stripping away the the the other emotions that are not that. So you're stripping away anger and you're you're stripping away fear and you're stripping away and envy and you're stripping away your reaction. Then so you're slipping away. The reaction, reactionary feelings as opposed Thio. I think what I'm saying is we tend to think of stoicism as as being unfeeling and I think that that he's saying that it's no, it's not being unfeeling. It's about feeling the right and the most important thing, which is this which is he's saying, sort of being full of love and s o e and your point about all religions being the same I do. I do think at the core it is about that idea of love. Mm

. How do we get there? Uh, e knew if I knew that, I don't know what I'd be doing, but I think I think this is ah, lot of work. I mean, what what I what I think is so incredible about meditations, for instance, which is sort of the book that I, you know, spend most of my time thinking about and writing about is here. You have e mean he's writing this well into his reign as the most powerful man in the world. And so he's spending his time like he's carving out space in the morning. Or maybe he's carving out space before bed. Or he's, you know, setting aside a few minutes despite all the things that air, you know, all the demands on his time, and he's using that Teoh just, like, sit and think and reflect and write in a journal. There's another so sexist, the philosophy that Marcus is talking about. There's this great anecdote about Marcus, where you know he's

again. He's well into his reign, his emperor. And he'd just come back to Rome from, you know, time, uh, on the on the on the frontier. And he's leaving. He's leaving his palace and one of his friends sees him, and he says, You know, where you going on He says, I am. I'm going to see sexist the philosopher to learn what I what I do not yet know. And so the idea that even in old age, he was focused on learning on on getting better to me is the idea, like wisdom isn't this thing that you just get like you get wisdom like a college degree. But that philosophy is this kind of lifelong practice and pursuit that we have to be continually engaged in, just in the way that nobody thinks like, oh, I went to church. Once I am a Christian, it's like, No, it's a ritual and it's a routine and it's a practice, and it's it's a process of the things really

sinking into your heart and your soul. What makes someone interested in philosophy versus not? Well, I would say the vast, vast, vast open. Maybe that's the right word. Not interested but open right, because I think that's a different thing. Because philosophy, to me is the ability to change your mind, right? There's almost a Yeah, I mean, like, we've been talking about that a lot, but it's philosophy is the ability to listen and speak and vet through things. And you know what makes someone open to philosophy versus totally against it? Well, I think one of the one of the tragedies of our time is that we have come to present philosophy to people as this kind of abstract, theoretical thing. Like I was talking to a person the other day and he mentioned he was like, You know, when you as the best philosophy department in the world and I was like, I

don't think I was like, I write about philosophy professionally, and I cannot tell you the name of one philosopher. N. Y U. The point being philosophy doesn't exist in any form that's remotely accessible or usable to real people. And and that's a to me, a tremendous shame and a perversion of what philosophy waas for thousands of years. Like Seneca, he says. You know, do you want to know what philosophy offers the world? And he says, Philosophy offers council, and it philosophy is like a helping hand. It's a shoulder to lean on its advice. And again, it's this grand tradition of people struggling with these questions over and over again and, you know, making the tiny bit of progress. So I think what I try to do in my writing is present philosophy as something that people could be open to. So like with the obstacle is the way, which is my first book about stoicism. Basically, my thinking

was people, nobody wakes up and says, I need more philosophy. They tend to wake up and say I have these problems that I need help solving and so I try to present philosophy as, um a solution to our problems, and Marks really talks about this and meditation, he says. Make sure that you see philosophy as a bomb as a soothing ointment on bond. And so I think if if people understood that that's what you could get out of it. I think everyone would be reading it just in the way that it took generations for people to realize like, Oh, therapy is something you don't have to be like mentally ill toe benefit from therapy. And I think you don't have to be a genius to benefit from philosophy It Z designed to help you with what you're going through. I feel like Philosophy almost has, like an inheritance, inherit balance to it. Would you? Would you agree

? Yeah, yes, yes, on book that again. We were talking about the four virtues, so it's courage. But moderation is one of them. And so that idea of balance and the like, Aristotle says the hardest thing in the world is to find, like the right amount at the right time. You know, in the right, you know that it's it's easy to kind of know you know what what you should do, but what the solution is, but the amount of ingredients or the right application at the right time in the right way, that's that's the really, really tricky part. It's like E feel like I'm thinking about going back to parents, right? Like that exact perfect amount at the exact right time. And, you know, you've got discipline, and then you've got, you know, commending your child, and you know, all kinds of things that have to be in perfect balance all the time. And so, you know, another thing that I was thinking about was, you know, you're talking about meditation. We're talking about balance. So

and then there's all these different disciplines of courage and and and all of the four, what do you call them? The 44 Virtues. Virtues for virtues. Um so is stillness, like the balance of all disciplines. I I think so. I would I would maybe argue that stillness is the place you get to when you put in the work. So just like, um, you know, just like an athlete sort of perfectly trained in time for the moment, is going to be much calmer and still are, you know, in the fourth quarter than the athlete who is horribly unprepared and not ready for that moment. Bond. So I think stillness is like what you get when you strip away the things that are in essential and you focus on what is essential. So I mean, look, there's the stillness of like, Hey, I'm sitting on a porch swing, you know, on a summer evening in the South and that's wonderful. Or, you know, stillness is a

beach in the in Hawaii or, you know, whatever. But still, this to me is also, um, to sort of the apotheosis of all the all the work. It's like being, but that flows that you're talking about with the idea that you could even be sort of still and locked in when you're sick and hi on NyQuil is to me that, you know, that's like That's the proof of what we're talking about. So it's like it's almost how in those high pressure moments, that's when things seem to be the call missed and the clearest. That, to me, is also a form of that stillness. I agree, but doesn't it take stillness? I'm using it in a real simple sense of, like, calm still and non nonreactive open. Um, doesn't it take stillness to get to that place

, though? Otherwise, you're operating from sort of, uh, you know, sympathetic nervous system That maybe doesn't give you the best direction. No, I think. I think that's right. You know, people, you know, people think like, Hey, the way you become an MBA champion is like playing a lot of, you know, uh, pickup basketball games. And it's like, No, it was hundreds of hours reviewing the playbook. You know, it was hundreds of hours of one on one drills. You know, it's Kobe Bryant getting up, but 4 a.m. and shooting, you know, 1000 free throws alone in the gym. You know, a book is is hundreds of hours of being alone by yourself just working on this thing, Um, with no certain no certainty of pay off, You know what I mean? So I so I do think solitude and silence and self control and sort of kind of a bubble. All of that's required Thio ultimately

accumulate the knowledge and the insight and the experience so that you could be still while 200,000 people are shouting your name while you're doing this very difficult thing. Um, so, yeah, I think stillness begets stillness. Certainly because it takes a certain amount of stillness and quiet to know what you want. How many people do you think suffer from not actually knowing what they want from life because they never slow down enoughto know. Oh, I think I think that's that's most people. Yeah, like the everyone I think has that voice inside them that's talking to them. But most of us have way too much going on to ever actually listen to it. So, um, what do you dio I mean, I live out in the country. I try to say no to most things I'm very disciplined about routine and schedule. Um, you know, I think

I think you've gotta You've gotta carve out room for that stuff toe happen. Um, always done that. Not always. But, you know, I am, I sort of. When my first book came out, I and and it had done pretty well I thought, Oh, I'm a writer. Now. I must move to New York City and e moved to New York City, and and in some respects, it was great for my career, and it was exciting and fun, and on the other, it was, like so immediately obvious to me that this was not a place where one could do important work personally or professionally, because there was always not only was there always a distraction, there was always a really good distraction. So So it's like, you know, you need time like not doing anything. And yet there was always a dinner, always a nev ent. Always an opportunity that

it felt really foolish to say no to that living where I live now in Texas. I don't even think about because I would not get on a plane to go do this on DSO. So I think you have to be saying no is really, really difficult. E have this, uh, this someone gave me this. Uh, do you know Do you know who Jonathan Fader is? He's a sports psychologist. He used to work for the Mets. Um, he works with a lot of writers to He gave me this thing. And so that's Oliver Sacks the psychologist. And anyways, it's a picture of sacks in his office, and you can see behind him to be like it was right here. And it's just a giant picture, a giant sign and it says capital n o exclamation point. And it's supposed to, and I so I have it right on my desk next to my desk that the Actually, it's so I have a picture of my youngest son that I have the no thing and then I have a picture of my oldest son. So it's sort of right between them, the idea being, um

that you have to say no toe all sorts of extraneous, irrelevant things. So you can say yes to the things that do matter. And and so this idea of being ableto choose what's essential or separate the essential from the inessential is really, really important. It's like that takes some stillness. But then when you do it, then you're able to get stillness and the things that matter mhm. What are the things that matter for you the most, or what? What has come through now to be the things that matter the most to you? Yeah. So, like, you know, people go like, what are your top priorities? I've kind of realized, like I think if you're putting them in order, that's probably not the right way to think about it. But, like, for me, it's like my kids, my marriage and then my writing. So, like my sort of career and then, like the sort of two different parts of my family, which are the same but also, you know, different on DSO. I like when I think about, like where I wanna be in the future

. It's not, um like, Hey, I want to have sold this many books or I want to have accomplished. Like I think a lot of people have very concrete goals, which I think are good as faras crystallizing, like what you'll need to do Thio Thio accomplish it. But But I kind of think like no, I want I want those things to continue to be the highest priority in my life, and I want them to be more or less unchanged, you know? So I've gotten to a place where I'm much less concrete about my goals and it's more about, and this is obviously a luxury of my profession in that, like, you know, writer, you know, you you maybe have a few seasons as the basketball player, you know, a few years as a racer. Whereas like a writer, you could do it sort of till you die. But but my my thing is like, I want to do well at those three things. Uh my whole life, like so so that That's kind of when

I think about what matters. It's those three things in some, like at the other way I think about I've talked about this before, but I kind of think like, what do I want a day in my life to look like? And I kind of back out from there, and it allows me to evaluate opportunities. So someone came and said like, Hey, I'll give you, you know, all this money to go do this. But then I would have to move here, and I have to show up in this office every day. That would be really cool, and it might help me accomplished up. But it would come at the expense of the other things. Yeah. So would you say then that you're getting happier? Definitely. Yes. Describe what happens like that I want I'm Carrie. I asked that to be able to ask you what is happier like explain. Happier? Yeah. I mean, look, there's a certain inevitable Nesta happiness, and I think unfortunately, in Western culture, we tend to associate happiness with achievement

. So So, um, although I've seen interesting studies, they're they're looking at it like young people tend to say, I feel happy when and then they fill in the blank with, like I won this race or I order I got this promoted promotion. But older people tend to associate happiness with feelings of contentment, like and so So it strikes me. If that's what you're gonna end up, you focus on it now. But but for me, happiness, weirdly it comes. Happiness and stillness feels, at least in the same ballpark to me like like when I when I don't feel pulled in a million directions when I have autonomy, kind of over my life over what I'm doing when I when I sort of creatively fulfilled, but but not like whipping myself. So I e think for me. Happiness feels like when I feel like I am and I have enough on bits

when I'm when I'm sort of yearning for something or I'm chasing something or I'm trying to get something back or get rid of something. That's when that's when I'm feeling less happy. So weirdly the last you know, again it feels terrible, so I don't mean to be glib about it. But like the last You know, several months of this pandemic have been an interesting trial for me because so many of the things that were part of my job and life have kind of fallen away. And so it's forced me to sort of reiterate and re establish what those priorities are and then realize Oh, actually, focusing more on them is just as rewarding personally and professionally as it is, you know, leaping on all these opportunities that come by and and that and that there was actually a hidden cost to saying yes, the all the things that I was saying yes to. So who taught

us that all that is what made us happy. Where does that come from? I mean, to me, that's like, if you think about evolution, what would be the number one driver of like Okay, why does Elon Musk start one company, then start another and then go Now I have to put people in space right like that that I don't It doesn't. From what I read and see, I don't think I would want to be Elon Musk, but I'm grateful that Elon Musk exists, so it's It's almost like like his his inability to feel enough drives the species forward but comes at an immense cost to him personally. So I think it shouldn't surprise us that that I mean, does it like that? That is the question then, if you if you're grateful for him in the progress that it makes our species make. But yet less is Maura's kind of what you're saying, it leads me to wonder What's

the point and why is there still a hook that we need to evolve or do more? Be more like, Why do we need that at all? Well, I think what I mean. It's like from like like what makes somebody look out over an ocean and say I'm willing to risk death, Never see my family again to know what's on the other side of this ocean like we wouldn't be here in America if people didn't have that impulse. And obviously there is, you know, a historical cost of that as well. I mean, but we don't need to get into that, but but so it's like I, under that that spirit of, of, of being unable to ever be satisfied or say did, um there never is enough you never feel good from a from a propelling the species forward over, you know, hundreds of thousands of years. That makes sense to me. But just because it's naturally true doesn't mean you know, it's it's good

for one person. Mhm. So I But I think modern. If you could do it in moderation, Maybe that's the best of both. The balance of all disciplines. Exactly. Is that even possible? Um, you know, maybe balance is a fleeting thing on DSO. It's about sort of trying to get it over and over again, like, you know what I mean. Like, I think I agree 100%. I believe. You know, when you talk about like what if I'm balance in your life with family and work and all these things, and I'm like, I don't think balance is a real thing. I don't think it's ever perfect. It's chasing the balance. You're always chasing your like when you're at home with your kids, you're not working. Then you go work and you will work and you come home and then you you know, go play and have fun with your friends. But then you got to come home and like you're always chasing the balance. Yeah, Yeah, it's like that moment of weightlessness. You're just getting the moments of it, you know? And then then your gravity is pulling me right back down, But you you can still get it over and over and over again. So

what is the point of all this? What is the Are you asking me what the meaning of life is? Yeah, basically, I don't know. Probably should have. I probably should have just started with that question because I love to ask this question. Well, so I was giving you Marcus. Really? Is his answer earlier. That sort of good character and works for the common good. I think that's a pretty good answer. Um, have you read Man's search for meaning Victor? So it's incredible book. So Victor Frankel is in three D. If he's a psychologist, Jewish psychologist in Vienna and he's he spends time in three different concentration camps. Um, he's sort of deeply inspired by Stoke Philosophy writes this book Man's Search for Meaning, which is one of the best selling books of all time. It's really an incredible document about sort of human resilience and perseverance, But he's sort of saying that like perhaps we think of like we think that like we asked the question and he's like Maybe a better way to think about it is like you're being asked the question

and you answer it with the meaning you create in your life. And so I kind of think like we're here for this sort of fleeting, ephemeral moment. Meaning is what we managed to cobble together through relationships through the good that we do through the work that we produce, you know, through the sort of collective you know, contributions we make too humanity, that's that's the meaning of life. What's your purpose within this within that life? Yeah, I mean, I feel like the sort of three priorities I was giving you the sort of purposes kind of, ah, triangulation of those things. But I feel like sort of professionally, like what gets me out of bed is the idea of taking kind of ancient wisdom and making it accessible not just the other people, because obviously that's

what I do that like if I wasn't making accessible to people, people wouldn't buy it, and I wouldn't be able to publish books. But I think like what I was doing this morning, what was got me excited this morning Waas taking all these little bits of things that, um that had I've read and all these different things. And they just kind of came together magically this morning. And I wasn't just that just gets me so excited when, like, the the dots lineup and it works, which is probably, you know, it's like probably that getting this. You feel like when the race starts, you find yourself in the pocket or, you know, your strategy is working Exactly. You know, when it's just like it's working. And so, yeah, so I love that state. But, I mean, you could get it trading stocks or, you know, playing poker or something. I'm sure that's not really what I like doing. So for me, it's It's making connections, you

know, from history and psychology and philosophy into into something that works. That's that's what I love doing. Mhm. What do you think? The biggest lesson that you've learned is through all of your reading, learning and sort of crossover between your own life and application? Yeah, I don't know. I don't know. how you would e don't know how you would sort of classify the size of it, right. So I would say, one of the ones that hit me really hard. So the stoics talked a lot about death. You know, they talk about this idea of momentum or e e. I'll send you one of these. I carry this momentum mori coin. But, um, the idea of of meditating on your mortality is a big one. But the I there was a passage in Seneca that hit me that I think it's kind of changed how I think about things and how I think about time. You know, he says, you know, we think that death is something that we're moving towards like

the death is in the future. So you know, whether per an actuary table, you're gonna die when you're 77 or like, Hey, you know, you have six months to live because you have cancer. Whatever it is like, we think that death is something. We're a death is stationary, and we're moving towards it on, he says. Actually, death is happening now. He says all time passes belongs to death. And I was like, Whoa, Okay. What does that mean? He's saying so like, every is this time that passes can't be revised, revived. And so his point was that that it's not that like, I've not I don't have 40 years left. It's that I've died 33 years, and, um, that was just sort of profoundly eye opening to me. And then it it goes like, Oh, like, you know, someone you know, waste five hours your time or whatever. You know, you just died five

hours and and that puts it all on, so so it to me, it's really helpful as far as like, doing stuff that I don't want to dio, you know, like when you realize what you're paying for it, not what you're getting paid but what you're paying. It's very helpful. Mm. Well, it's just boils down to a wasting time things. If you're going to die in every moment that you do something, you better choose to be living it versus enduring it. Yes, totally. And and so, yeah, it's not like people go. Okay, so if you're going to die like you know, nothing matters, it's not that it's that you could die, and so you have to live as if you could die. Not like if you would if you weren't. Yes, right? Like like if you knew what, you were going to die tomorrow. It would, in a weird way, probably make everything meaning list. But if you know what I mean. But it's like you could so you have toe, make sure that you're doing everything as if it is the last

thing that you're doing. Oh, that's like my perfect last question. Okay, if you had one more day, then what would you do with it? You know, it's weird. I don't know how different and this probably sounds flip and maybe people don't believe, But I don't think my day would be that different than my ordinary day. Like my order. So I wake up early, I take my kids for walk. Sometimes my wife comes, sometimes she doesn't. I said with the journal for a few minutes, then you know, sort of depending on what's going on, like if I have to record stuff like I come to my office, but, you know, so if if it was my last day, probably wouldn't waste time commuting or something, but uh, I write like I spent a couple hours writing and then I'm done, and then I just you know, I just hang out the rest of the day, so you know, I would go in the pool or we eat or we play games or whatever it is like. So So that's kind of what my day is ordinarily. And

and so when we're talking about these questions, philosophy is supposed to help. Like Cicero, you asked the philosophizes a word? Um, Cicero's famous quote is that to philosophizes toe, learn how to die. And so, Andi and then the idea is that if you know how to die, you know how to live. And so I do think if I had 24 hours left, I mean, look, I probably check my email a little bit less, you know, there's there's definitely things I would do differently. Um, but the broad strokes of like what I prioritize would remain essentially unchanged. And so I take some pride in that Mhm. You should take a lot. Thank you. Well, I feel like you're you're living your best life, and that's not something that everyone can say. Yeah, it's It's definitely a privilege. Lucky place to be and is supported in some, you know, respects by external circumstances

. But I'd like to think I could get here with half the income. Or you know what? Like I'd like I'd like to think that it's ideally, it should not be dependent on external circumstances or what good is it? Mm hmm. That's the goal. It's not easy, but that's the goal. Yes, Well, thank you for helping us all figure out how to get there. Thanks for having me. This is really cool. Was it too intense? Never. I never you know, I can probably No, I No, I didn't. I didn't sugarcoat. Nor did I try and probe. Like I'm just that curious. I I could keep going on and on and on and on because, you know, I totally would love to riff on death because I feel like I've been reading about that a little bit, too. And just how you know, Thank God we die, because if we didn't die, life would be meaningless. Like death gives life purpose. Otherwise, what's a day? Who cares? Yeah. No

, exactly. And most of the people that I know that are really into those sort of radical life extension stuff. Can't really give you a good answer as to why. It's very strange. We should talk about death on my podcast. I'll have you on them. We'll just talk about that. We'll live through talking about death. Uh, sounds good. Okay. Thank you. Thanks, everybody, for listening to the pretty intense podcast today. I hope you enjoyed it. If you like what you heard today and you want to hear more, please click on the subscribe button.

Ryan Holiday
Ryan Holiday
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