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    • Understanding the Past for a Clearer FutureBy studying historical patterns, Marc Andreessen finds comfort and guidance in navigating the present and embracing the rapid changes brought by new technologies.

      Marc Andreessen is currently obsessed with two main things: the changing technologies and their impact on different industries and society, and understanding the patterns and themes that emerge throughout history when new technologies are introduced. He believes that many of the reactions and concerns surrounding new technologies today are not unique to our era, but have been experienced in the past with previous technological advancements. By looking back and studying the societal reactions to technology in the past, Andreessen finds comfort in realizing that many of the patterns and themes are universal and deeply rooted in humanity. This understanding helps him navigate the present and feel less overwhelmed by the rapid changes in the world.

    • The Resistance to Technological Change and the Battle for PowerTechnological change disrupts established hierarchies, leading to resistance from those in power. This battle represents a shift in how power and influence are attained in society, impacting both technology and social structures.

      Technological change is often met with resistance and opposition from those in power, as it threatens their established hierarchies and status structures. This pattern has been persistent throughout history and can be observed in the three-step process: first, new technologies are ignored and dismissed by experts and authorities; second, rational counterarguments are presented to justify the status quo; and finally, the status quo reacts emotionally and engages in name-calling. The impact of technological changes extends beyond the realm of technology itself, as it leads to societal change and a reordering of power and authority. This battle between top-down institutions and lateral networks represents a fundamental shift in how people attain positions of power and influence in society.

    • The Battle between Centralized Power and Disruption in the Internet AgeThe internet's peer-to-peer architecture has challenged centralized institutions, giving rise to disruptive movements and eliminating the need for permission in sharing ideas. This tension shapes today's political landscape.

      The internet has introduced a fundamentally disruptive technology that has sparked a battle between those who want to reinforce top-down power and those who want to disrupt it. The internet's lateral, peer-to-peer architecture has allowed for anyone to plug in, build apps and websites, and share information freely. This has challenged the traditional dominance of centralized institutions and given rise to disruptive movements on both the left and the right. The internet has also eliminated the need for permission, allowing individuals to share their ideas and let others judge them directly, without needing approval from boardrooms or other gatekeepers. This tension between institutions and networks is at the heart of the current political landscape.

    • The Evolution of Access to Information and TechnologyOpen access to information through the internet has revolutionized the way we share and consume knowledge, challenging centralized control and promoting debate and progress.

      Access to information and technology has drastically evolved over time. In the past, building smartphone apps required negotiating with telecom giants and conforming to their rules and controls. Even today, there are limitations set by companies like Apple. However, when it comes to the web, it has always been more open and unrestricted. Building websites and sharing information has never been subject to the same level of control. This shift in access to information is comparable to the underground dissident movement in the Soviet Union, where spreading information required risky measures. With the advent of the internet, open access to information has become more prevalent, making it harder to maintain centralized power and control. The conversation highlights the positive impact of open access information in breaking down barriers and promoting debate and progress.

    • Challenging Power Dynamics: The Role of Young Entrepreneurs and Technology in SocietyThe younger generation, armed with technology and fresh ideas, is challenging oppressive control systems and driving positive change. However, it's important to acknowledge that not all ideas will succeed, and resistance to change will persist.

      The power dynamics and control in society are being challenged by the emergence of new technologies and young entrepreneurs. People are becoming more aware of the flaws in existing systems and are no longer willing to tolerate oppressive top-down control. The optimism lies in the fact that the younger generation, growing up with access to the internet and vast knowledge, is entering the scene with fresh ideas and advanced skills. These "kits" are equipped to make significant changes and improve the world through technological advancements. However, it is important to realize that not all ideas will succeed, and incumbents will always face resistance as the cycle of change continues. Even successful companies eventually become the new incumbents, perpetuating the cycle.

    • Balancing Protection and Innovation in Growing CompaniesCompanies should avoid becoming too defensive and conservative as they grow, as it may hinder innovation and prevent new technologies and competitors from entering the market. Finding a balance between protection and fostering innovation is crucial.

      As companies grow and establish themselves as industry leaders, there is a temptation for them to shift from being disruptors to defenders. This shift often leads to a more conservative and protective approach, which can hinder innovation and prevent new technologies and competitors from entering the market. While some argue that this transition is necessary as companies evolve, others worry that it could lead to a suppression of free speech and a top-down control of society through technology. It is important for companies to find a balance between protecting their interests and fostering innovation. The pessimistic scenarios discussed in the conversation include a dystopian future where technology is used for state control, but there are also optimistic perspectives that emphasize the potential for technology to empower and liberate individuals.

    • The internet's limitations in building effective governance systems and the dangers of relying solely on past experiences.While the internet has the power to break down hierarchies, it has yet to prove its ability to create effective systems. Relying solely on past experiences can hinder progress and innovation.

      While the internet is excellent at tearing down hierarchies, it has not yet demonstrated its ability to build effective governance systems. Peer-to-peer networks can be created, but they may not have the power or functionality to replace traditional institutions like democracies or banks. This lack of capability to build is described as a form of nihilism, where destruction is easier than creation. On the other hand, humans naturally learn from past experiences and develop scar tissue or cautionary lessons over time. This scar tissue can limit exploratory thinking and shrink one's willingness to try new things. However, Marc Andreessen's day job as a venture capitalist has taught him that relying solely on scar tissue is a bad idea, as it can hinder progress and innovation.

    • The probabilistic nature of startups and domainsUnderstanding the probabilities and analyzing failures is crucial in the startup world. Rather than striving for perfection, it's important to learn from experiences and focus on finding explanations for results.

      When it comes to startups and various domains, we need to understand that they are inherently probabilistic. Failure is a common occurrence, but it doesn't mean that the idea or concept will never work. Instead of drawing the wrong lesson and assuming that an idea is doomed to fail, we should extract the right lesson from the experience. This involves analyzing the specific domain and understanding the probabilities involved. In the case of startups, it's important to recognize that about half of them will fail for various reasons, including timing. We cannot expect perfection in the probabilistic realm, and success may only be achieved at a world-class level, which is far from 100%. Therefore, we need to assess our results and find explanations for them, rather than solely focusing on achieving a perfect score.

    • The Role of Timing, Execution, and Judgment in Entrepreneurial SuccessFounders with prior experience and a track record of success have the potential for future success, regardless of the specific idea they present.

      Success in entrepreneurship is not solely dependent on the idea, but rather on timing, execution, and the judgment of the founders. Marc Andreessen emphasizes that while some ideas may appear bad at first, all ideas have the potential to succeed with the right person and enough work. Assessing the judgment of founders, especially those with prior experience, provides insights into their ability to navigate challenges, make decisions under pressure, and persevere. For new founders, evaluating their approach to opportunities and learning from their experiences becomes crucial. This conversation highlights the importance of recognizing the value of founders' track records, as their past work can indicate their potential for success in future ventures, regardless of the specific idea presented.

    • The importance of a strong background and years of ideation in entrepreneurship and innovation.Having a solid foundation of knowledge and experience in the problem they are solving, along with a long-standing commitment to their ideas, greatly increases the chances of success for young entrepreneurs.

      Successful entrepreneurs and innovators often have a deep background in the problem they are trying to solve. It is not uncommon for young founders to have been working on their ideas for many years, even before they officially start their companies. This is especially true in the software industry, where young programmers can gain professional-level experience at a young age. The key is the idea base and the backstory of what they have done in the past. When making investment decisions, venture capitalists like Andreessen Horowitz make bets at different tiers, including seed funding, venture funding, and growth funding. The larger the investment, the more involved they become in the company's operations and the longer the commitment.

    • Evaluating Venture Capital Investment Decisions Across Different Business Stages and ApproachesVenture capital investment decisions are influenced by different factors at each stage of the business, with emphasis on founders' potential at the seed stage and business analysis at the growth stage. Evaluation of people and ideas remains crucial throughout.

      Venture capital investment decisions are based on different criteria depending on the stage of the business. At the seed stage, the evaluation primarily revolves around the capability and potential of the founders rather than the idea itself. However, at the venture stage, in addition to the people component, there needs to be a strong reason to believe that the business will be the one to succeed in a competitive market. On the other hand, at the growth stage, investment decisions are based on a more in-depth business analysis, including factors such as revenue growth, market size, and profit margins. Regardless of the stage, the evaluation of the people and the idea remains significant. Furthermore, the decision-making process varies among venture capital firms, with some relying on unanimous votes while others have a more top-down approach. In contrast, the single trigger puller model, which delegates budgets, is used by some firms like Andreessen Horowitz.

    • Active Involvement, Transparency, and Unconventional Bets: A Winning Formula for Marc Andreessen's Investment FirmMarc Andreessen's investment firm values active involvement, transparency, and unconventional ideas. Their quick decision-making process and willingness to challenge norms have led to significant success in venture and new technology.

      Marc Andreessen's investment firm places a strong emphasis on active involvement and communication with their investment partners. They encourage partners to thoroughly investigate investment opportunities and make their own decisions within their budget. The firm values transparency and expects partners to openly communicate their plans and engage in conversations with others. While the firm understands that not all investments will be successful, they are concerned about missing out on potential winning opportunities. They also prioritize creativity and are willing to back entrepreneurs with unconventional ideas that challenge existing norms. The firm's structure allows for quick decision-making and avoids the burden of slow processes faced by traditional firms. Their history shows that these unconventional bets can yield significant success in the world of venture and new technology.

    • Embracing the Probabilistic Nature of Venture CapitalismSuccess in venture capitalism does not require making every correct decision, but rather understanding the probability of success and embracing a portfolio approach to maximize overall profitability.

      Success in venture capitalism is not dependent on making every decision correctly, but rather on embracing the probabilistic nature of the domain. It is important to realize that missing out on great deals is a common occurrence even for the most successful venture capitalists. The good news is that one doesn't need to achieve a perfect score in order to succeed. By viewing investments as part of a portfolio and evaluating success at the aggregate level, rather than the individual level, one can take more risks and capitalize on the potential for "flukes." This allows for the pursuit of high-risk, high-reward opportunities, knowing that even if some investments don't perform well, the overall portfolio can still yield significant profits.

    • The Flawed Education System: A Call for Complete RedesignThe education system is outdated and the only way to bring about meaningful change is through a complete overhaul that aligns with the needs of the modern world.

      The education system is fundamentally flawed and cannot be fixed through reform. The system was built in a time and place that no longer aligns with the world we live in today. It was designed as a mass education system modeled after mass manufacturing, with the goal of training children for the industrial economy. However, this approach no longer serves the needs of students and society. The system has been on autopilot for the past 100 years and has been taken over by individuals who benefit from maintaining the status quo. Therefore, meaningful change and improvement in education will require a complete reimagining and redesign of the system to better align with the needs of the modern world.

    • Reforming the Education System: Building a New Path for ChangeInstead of trying to reform the current education system, it may be more effective to create a new system that addresses its shortcomings and offers alternative options. In order to bring about meaningful change, it is important to evaluate the incentives of those responsible for the system and hold them accountable.

      The current education system is difficult to reform due to deep-rooted issues and vested interests. The conversation highlights that despite good intentions, attempts to bring about change within the system have proven futile. The conversation suggests that instead of trying to reform the existing system, it may be more effective to build a new one from scratch. This new system would have to address the shortcomings of the current system and provide alternative options such as homeschooling networks and micro-schools. The conversation emphasizes the importance of considering incentives and acknowledging that blaming individuals for the system's failures is not productive. To effect meaningful change, it is necessary to examine and evaluate the incentives created by those responsible for the system and hold them accountable.

    • Corruption, Oligopolies, and Regulatory Capture: The Challenges of Political and Business SystemsFair competition and market forces are necessary to drive innovation and prevent corruption. However, reforming the current political and business systems is a difficult task due to vested interests and influence.

      There are inherent issues within the current political and business systems that breed corruption and hinder innovation. These legacy systems are deeply intertwined with politics, leading to a cycle of dysfunction and corruption. The conversation highlights the concept of pro business versus pro market, with pro business often resulting in oligopolies dominating industries and stifling competition. These oligopolies then have the power to influence and control politics, creating a concept of regulatory capture. The conversation suggests that true market discipline and innovation can only be achieved when businesses face fair competition and are subject to market forces. Reforming these systems and changing the incentives within them seems nearly impossible given the level of interest and influence involved.

    • The Complex Interplay of Business and Government Hinders Innovation and CompetitionThe intertwining of business and government in various sectors creates a challenging environment for startups, leading to limited competition, stifled innovation, and increased government subsidies. Anti-monopoly measures and competitive alternatives are needed to prevent rent-seeking behaviors. Visionary leaders like Elon Musk offer hope for disrupting the existing landscape.

      There is a complex intertwining of business and government in various sectors, including finance and education, which creates a challenging environment for startups and new entrants. This hybrid mutants system combines elements of both free market economy and top-down control, resulting in oligopolistic cartels and limited competition. As a result, innovation is stifled, prices skyrocket, and government subsidies increase over time. The conversation also highlights the need for anti-monopoly measures, anti-regulatory capture, and a focus on competitive alternatives to prevent rent-seeking behaviors. This sentiment is expressed across different political spectrums, with both right-wing populist and left-wing critics acknowledging the flaws in the current system. Despite these challenges, the conversation ends with the mention of Elon Musk as a mental model, suggesting the potential for visionary leaders to navigate and disrupt the existing landscape.

    • Broaden Your Perspectives and Enhance Problem-Solving AbilitiesEmbrace different mental models, like Elon Musk's first principles thinking and Peter Thiel's understanding of human behavior, to challenge assumptions and approach problems from diverse perspectives.

      Successful individuals like investors, CEOs, entrepreneurs, and artists each have their own unique frameworks and worldviews that contribute to their success. It is important to recognize that these frameworks are not necessarily compatible with each other, making it impossible to synthesize all of them into a single model. However, we can offset our own narrow thinking by adopting a mental model of how someone else, such as Elon Musk or Steve Jobs, would approach a situation. By doing so, we can broaden our perspectives and challenge our own assumptions. For example, Elon Musk emphasizes first principles thinking, encouraging us to question and strip down assumptions to their foundations. On the other hand, Peter Thiel focuses on the dynamics of human behavior and rivalry, providing a useful framework for understanding social dynamics. Adopting these mental models can catalyze our thinking and enhance our problem-solving abilities.

    • The importance of maintaining high standards in personal growth and success.Continuously challenging preconceptions, seeking different perspectives, and surrounding oneself with smart individuals ensures constant improvement and effectiveness in all endeavors.

      Maintaining a high bar for oneself and one's work is essential for continued growth and success. By seeking different perspectives and engaging in first principles thinking, individuals can challenge their own preconceptions and identify blind spots. Surrounding oneself with smart and strong-willed individuals, such as a board of directors, provides a forcing function to fully think things through and defend one's ideas. Success should not lead to complacency, but rather, it should be a driving force to constantly raise the bar. This accountability to oneself and those who rely on our decisions is crucial to avoid laziness and ensure effectiveness in all endeavors.

    • Setting standards and recognizing when to stop: Marc Andreessen's philosophy on personal and professional growth.Marc Andreessen emphasizes the importance of setting self-imposed standards and recognizing when it is necessary to let go, while also recommending impactful books that have shaped his thinking.

      Marc Andreessen believes in setting self-imposed standards in order to be fair to oneself and others. He emphasizes the importance of individuals either having a reason to adhere to these standards or recognizing when it is necessary to stop pursuing certain endeavors. Furthermore, Andreessen recommends several notable books that have had a significant impact on his thinking. These include "The Weirdest People in the World" by Joseph Henrich, "The Mackay Alliance" by James Bernham, "The Revolt of the Public" by Martin Gurry, and "The Ancient City" by a prominent French author from the 1860s. Andreessen praises the latter book for its profound insights into the creation of civilization and cults, and how they have shaped human society throughout history.

    Recent Episodes from The Knowledge Project with Shane Parrish

    #198 Maya Shankar: The Science of Identity

    #198 Maya Shankar: The Science of Identity

    Shane Parrish and Maya Shankar dive into the complexities of identity and personal transformation. They explore how significant life changes can reshape one's sense of self and explain how to navigate these transitions. Maya shares her personal stories and tips on making proactive choices and keeping a flexible, layered sense of self. They also discuss the psychological and philosophical aspects of identity, offering practical advice on goal-setting and personal growth.
    Maya Shankar is a cognitive scientist and the creator, executive producer, and host of the podcast, A Slight Change of Plans. Shankar was a Senior Advisor in the Obama White House, where she founded and served as Chair of the White House Behavioral Science Team. She holds a Ph.D. in Cognitive Psychology from Oxford and a B.A from Yale.

    (00:00) Intro

    (02:40) Shankar's "almost unbelievable" story of getting into Julliard

    (05:30) Why Shankar studied identity

    (11:38) What is identity?

    (14:52) Using your identity to accomplish your goals

    (18:00) Using anti-identities to accomplish your goals

    (18:51) What to do when your identity is "attacked"

    (26:30) How to re-establish trust in institutions

    (32:30) Use identity to start a positive habit

    (35:35) How to debunk myths with stories and facts

    (37:18) How does how we frame our goals help (or prevent) us from accomplishing them

    (43:11) The one motivational technique Shankar uses every day

    (45:15) On success


    Watch the episode on YouTube: ⁠⁠https://www.youtube.com/c/theknowledgeproject/videos⁠⁠

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    #197 Michaeleen Doucleff: TEAM Parenting

    #197 Michaeleen Doucleff: TEAM Parenting

    It's surprising how often we give our kids orders: "Do this!" "Don't do that!" But if we want to raise resilient and independent kids, is this the right approach? Michaeleen Doucleff argues there's a better way, and in this conversation, she explains why and shares practical strategies for solving the parenting "crisis" in the modern world.


    In this conversation, Doucleff reveals four parenting principles that will help foster resilience and independence in your kids while protecting and enhancing their emotional well-being. Shane and Doucleff discuss her observations on how different cultures approach parenting and how their practices can help alleviate the burdens we place on ourselves and our children. We also explore the role of technology and its impact on our parenting and our children's development and maturity.
    Michaeleen Doucleff is the author of Hunt, Gather, Parent. Her work has taken her all over the world to explore, observe, and learn from the parenting practices of various cultures. She is also a correspondent for NPR's Science Desk.

    (00:00) Intro

    (04:12) How (and why) we've lost our way as parents

    (08:02) The rise of the nuclear family

    (13:46) TEAM Parenting: T

    (17:20) TEAM Parenting: E

    (23:01) Why you don't need to praise your child

    (26:12) TEAM Parenting: A

    (36:42) TEAM Parenting: M

    (38:34) "Kids do not need to be entertained"

    (39:12) Technology, parenting, and transmitting values

    (1:02:59) Resources parents can use to educate kids about technology

    (1:04:50) How you can use the environment to give kids autonomy

    (1:09:56) Success and parenting


    Watch the episode on YouTube: ⁠https://www.youtube.com/c/theknowledgeproject/videos⁠

    Newsletter - I share timeless insights and ideas you can use at work and home. Join over 600k others every Sunday and subscribe to Brain Food. Try it: ⁠https://fs.blog/newsletter/⁠

    My Book! Clear Thinking: Turning Ordinary Moments into Extraordinary Results is out now - ⁠https://fs.blog/clear/⁠

    Follow me: ⁠https://beacons.ai/shaneparrish⁠

    Join our membership: ⁠https://fs.blog/membership/

    #196 Brent Beshore: Business Brilliance and Happiness at Home

    #196 Brent Beshore: Business Brilliance and Happiness at Home

    Succeeding in both life and business is very difficult. The skills needed to scale a company often clash with those required to cultivate a thriving home life. Yet, Brent Beshore seems to have cracked the code—or at least he's actively working on it. In this conversation, he spills his secrets on excelling in both arenas.

    This episode is split into two parts: the first 45 minutes covers life and how to be a better person. Brent opens up about the evolution of his marriage, physical health, and inner life.

    The rest of the episode focuses on business. Shane and Beshore discuss private equity, how to hire (and when to fire) CEOs, incentives, why debt isn’t a good thing in an unpredictable world, stewardship versus ownership, and why personality tests are so important for a functional organization.
    After beginning his career as an entrepreneur, Brent Beshore founded Permanent Equity in 2007 and leads the firm as CEO. He works with investors and operators to evaluate new investment opportunities.


    Watch the episode on YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/c/theknowledgeproject/videos

    Newsletter - I share timeless insights and ideas you can use at work and home. Join over 600k others every Sunday and subscribe to Brain Food. Try it: https://fs.blog/newsletter/

    My Book! Clear Thinking: Turning Ordinary Moments into Extraordinary Results is out now - https://fs.blog/clear/

    Follow me: https://beacons.ai/shaneparrish

    Join our membership: https://fs.blog/membership/

    Sponsors:

    Shopify: Making commerce better for everyone. https://www.shopify.com/shane

    Protekt: Simple solutions to support healthy routines. Enter the code "Knowledge" at checkout to receive 30% off your order. https://protekt.com/knowledge


    (00:00) Intro

    (05:08) Why Brent examined his life

    (09:44) How Brent "fixed" his relationships

    (20:04) How helping hurts

    (32:13) How Brent was subtly controlling relationships

    (40:36) Why Brent stopped drinking (mostly)

    (50:29) How to run a business with love yet competitively

    (01:00:34) Win-win relationships

    (01:05:34) On debt

    (01:19:28) On incentives

    (01:29:08) How to hire and fire CEOs

    (01:34:18) What most people miss about hiring

    (01:44:19) Brent's playbook for taking over a company

    (01:51:20) On projections

    (01:55:52) Revisiting investments

    (01:58:44) How "hands-off" is Brent?

    (02:08:34) Where people go wrong in private equity

    (02:14:07) On success

    #195 Morgan Housel: Get Rich, Stay Rich

    #195 Morgan Housel: Get Rich, Stay Rich

    The skills it takes to get rich are drastically different from the skills it takes to stay rich. Few understand this phenomenon more than Morgan Housel. He's identified unique lessons about wealth, happiness, and money by studying the world's richest families and learning what they did to build their wealth and just how quickly they squandered it all.
    In this conversation, Shane and Housel discuss various aspects of risk-taking, wealth accumulation, and financial independence. Morgan explains the importance of understanding personal financial goals and the dangers of social comparison, lets everyone in on his personal financial “mistake” that instantly made him sleep better at night, and why the poorest people in the world disproportionately play the lottery—and why it makes sense that they do. They also touch on the influence of upbringing on financial behaviors, the difference between being rich and wealthy, and the critical role of compounding in financial success. Of course, we can’t have a writer as good as Morgan Housel on the podcast and not ask him about his process, so Housel concludes with insights into storytelling, his writing processes, and the importance of leading by example in teaching financial values to children.
    Morgan Housel is a partner at Collaborative Fund. Previously, he was an analyst at The Motley Fool. He is a two-time winner of the Best in Business Award from the Society of American Business Editors and Writers and was selected by the Columbia Journalism Review for the Best Business Writing anthology. He's the author of two books: The Psychology of Money and Same as Ever.
    Watch the episode on YouTube: ⁠https://www.youtube.com/c/theknowledgeproject/videos⁠

    Newsletter - I share timeless insights and ideas you can use at work and home. Join over 600k others every Sunday and subscribe to Brain Food. Try it: ⁠https://fs.blog/newsletter/⁠

    My Book! Clear Thinking: Turning Ordinary Moments into Extraordinary Results is out now - ⁠https://fs.blog/clear/⁠ 

    Follow me: ⁠https://beacons.ai/shaneparrish⁠

    Join our membership: ⁠https://fs.blog/membership/⁠


    Sponsors

    Protekt: Simple solutions to support healthy routines. Enter the code "Knowledge" at checkout to receive 30% off your order. ⁠https://protekt.com/knowledge


    (00:00) Intro

    (04:46) Risk and income

    (07:40) On luck and skill

    (10:10) Buffett's secret strategy

    (12:28) The one trait you need to build wealth

    (16:20) Housel's capital allocation strategy

    (16:48) Index funds, explained

    (20:59) Expectations and moving goalposts

    (22:17) Your house: asset or liability?

    (27:39) Money lies we believe

    (32:12) How to avoid status games

    (35:04) Money rules from parents

    (40:15) Rich vs. wealthy

    (41:46) Housel's influential role models

    (42:48) Why are rich people miserable?

    (45:59) How success sows the seeds of average performance

    (49:50) On risk

    (50:59) Making money, spending money, saving money

    (52:50) How the Vanderbilt's squandered their wealth

    (1:04:11) How to manage your expectations

    (01:06:26) How to talk to kids about money

    (01:09:52) The biggest risk to capitalism

    (01:13:56) The magic of compounding

    (01:16:18) How Morgan reads

    (01:22:42) How to tell the best story

    (01:24:42) How Morgan writes

    (01:35:42) Parting wisdom and thoughts on success

    #194 Abigail Shrier: The Parent-Therapy Trap

    #194 Abigail Shrier: The Parent-Therapy Trap
    Over the last decade, therapy has become the de facto solution to solve all sorts of problems for all sorts of people. Everyone has slowly accepted that therapy is normal and a net benefit to society.

    But instead of helping kids work through difficult circumstances, what if it's just making the problems worse? That's what Abigail Shrier thinks is happening, and in this conversation, she reveals some surprising reasons why.

    Shane and Shrier discuss the real reason therapy is "bad," how we got to this point of acceptance as a culture, and what you can do as a parent to get back to normalcy. Shrier also shares her experiences with lifelong therapy patients, who should actually be in therapy, and the one thing that makes someone a successful parent.

    Watch the episode on YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/c/theknowledgeproject/videos

    Newsletter - I share timeless insights and ideas you can use at work and home. Join over 600k others every Sunday and subscribe to Brain Food. Try it: https://fs.blog/newsletter/

    My Book! Clear Thinking: Turning Ordinary Moments into Extraordinary Results is out now - https://fs.blog/clear/ 

    Follow me: https://beacons.ai/shaneparrish

    Join our membership: https://fs.blog/membership/

    Sponsors:

    Shopify: Making commerce better for everyone. https://www.shopify.com/shane

    Protekt: Simple solutions to support healthy routines. Enter the code "Knowledge" at checkout to receive 30% off your order. https://protekt.com/knowledge

    (00:00) Intro
    (05:44) Inverse: How do we raise mentally unstable kids?
    (08:29) How we got to now
    (11:45) Bad therapy...or just social trends?
    (13:21) Being your kids' friend: good or bad?
    (15:55) The parenting type that raises the BEST kids
    (21:35) Is this all the parents' fault?
    (29:53) Is "Bad Therapy" a world-wide problem?
    (32:57) Talk to your kids' therapist about these things
    (42:09) The importance of facing adversity in childhood
    (47:06) Can we blame grad schools for all of this?
    (49:14) On technology and social media
    (51:03) Schools should "never" have gotten involved in mental health
    (54:43) Did COVID accelerate "bad therapy?"
    (56:07) How to return to normalcy
    (58:21) Why Shane shares negative YouTube comments with his kids
    (01:01:23) Shrier's experience being "cancelled"
    (01:04:13) On prestige media
    (01:07:47) Small steps parents can take to return to normal
    (01:11:02) Dealing with schools saying one thing and parents saying another
    (01:13:32) Why is the silent majority...silent?
    (01:16:32) If this continues, what happens?
    (01:18:19) What makes someone a successful parent?

    #193: Dr. Jim Loehr: Change the Stories You Tell Yourself

    #193: Dr. Jim Loehr: Change the Stories You Tell Yourself

    What if reaching the next level of success wasn't determined by another skill, degree, or course but by something that changed on the inside?

    That's what Dr. Jim Loehr believes, and in this episode, he reveals everything he knows about mental toughness and winning the mind game. Shane and Loehr discuss the radical importance of the stories you tell yourself—including how they can damage your kids—and how to change the negative stories you believe. Loehr also shares the best reflection questions to ask yourself to reveal personal blindspots, the importance of rituals for calming anxiety and performing under pressure, and how the best in the world use their recovery time effectively.

    Dr. Jim Loehr is a world-renowned performance psychologist and author of 16 books. From his more than 30 years of experience and applied research, Dr. Loehr believes the single most important factor in successful achievement, personal fulfillment, and life satisfaction is the strength of one’s character. Dr. Loehr possesses a masters and doctorate in psychology and is a full member of the American Psychological Association.

    Watch the episode on YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/c/theknowledgeproject/videos

    Newsletter - I share timeless insights and ideas you can use at work and home. Join over 600k others every Sunday and subscribe to Brain Food. Try it: https://fs.blog/newsletter/

    My Book! Clear Thinking: Turning Ordinary Moments into Extraordinary Results is out now - https://fs.blog/clear/ 

    Follow me: https://beacons.ai/shaneparrish

    Join our membership: https://fs.blog/membership/

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    (00:00) Intro

    (03:20) Parenting and storytelling

    (06:15) How to determine whether or not the stories are limiting or enabling you

    (08:41) What the stories world-class performers tell themselves

    (15:02) How to change the stories you tell yourself

    (23:26) Questions to journal about

    (26:16) Private voices vs. public voices (and how they impact your kids)

    (31:32) How to help your friends change their stories

    (37:30) How to better come alongside your kids to prevent destructive behavior

    (44:48) - (45:06) What Loehr knows about high performers that others miss

    (53:12) On time and energy

    (01:06:26) Conquering the "between point" ritual

    (01:11:50) On rituals vs. habits

    (01:15:54) How to increase your mental toughness

    (01:23:51) On success

     

     

    #192 David Segal: Yearly Planning, Daily Action

    #192 David Segal: Yearly Planning, Daily Action

    Working in a business and working on a business are two different things. Without the former, nothing gets done; without the latter, the wrong things get done. David Segal has a unique way of managing that tension, and this episode, he reveals all his business operating secrets and explains how he failed along the way.

    Shane and Segal discuss what entrepreneurship really is, where motivation comes from, and what Segal learned building a $200 million tea business. Shane and David also dive deep into the dark side of success and the radical depression that can strike when you get a big payday, life and business lessons they learned from Warren Buffett, and the value of time management.

    David Segal is the co-founder of Firebelly Tea. He’s also best known as “the David” of DAVIDsTEA. During his time at DAVIDsTEA, Segal grew the company from a single store to a $200 million retail giant. Segal left DAVIDsTEA in 2016 and started Mad Radish—a quick service restaurant concept. Mad Radish is all about providing healthy, gourmet fast foods. In 2021, Segal started Firebelly tea to create exceptional loose leaf teas tailored to modern living.

    Listeners of The Knowledge Project can receive a special 15 percent discount on Firebelly Tea products by heading to www.firebellytea.com and entering the code Shane15 at checkout.

    Watch the episode on YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/c/theknowledgeproject/videos

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    (00:00) Intro

    (04:59) What entrepreneurship really is

    (07:10) How to manage your psychology

    (10:40) Yearly planning, daily action

    (15:50) Avoiding "ivory-tower syndrome"

    (18:30) Segal's childhood and background

    (25:15) The history of DAVIDsTEA and Firebelly

    (36:40) The evolution of tea and business over the last twenty years

    (42:30) On failures

    (49:00) Dealing with depression

    (52:30) Lessons about money

    (56:55) Business and life lessons from Warren Buffett

    (1:00:00) On time management

    (1:04:50) What's missing in Segal's life

    (1:08:39) On success

     

     

    #191 Dr. Rhonda Patrick: Diet Essentials For Healthy Living

    #191 Dr. Rhonda Patrick: Diet Essentials For Healthy Living
    Shane Parrish sits down with the renowned biochemist Dr. Rhonda Patrick to explore the intricate world of nutrition and health. Dr. Patrick provides a deep dive into the role micronutrients play in our daily health, detailing how deficiencies and insufficiencies in vitamins, minerals, fatty acids, and amino acids can lead to serious health issues over time. Shane and Dr. Patrick also discuss the science behind deliberate heat exposure. She outlines the optimal sauna conditions—temperature, duration, and frequency—necessary to achieve these health benefits and explains the physiological mechanisms at play.
     
    Rhonda Patrick has a Ph.D. in biomedical science and a Bachelor of Science degree in biochemistry/chemistry from the University of California, San Diego. She has done extensive research on aging, cancer, and nutrition.
     

    (00:00) Intro

    (04:40) A philosophy for nutrition

    (15:36) Micronutrients through supplements vs. food

    (25:43) Wild-caught vs. farm-raised fish

    (28:44) Organic vs. non-organic vegetables

    (36:14) On macronutrients

    (40:20) How protein levels differ in different foods

    (45:27) The best morning smoothie recipe

    (54:48) Dr. Patrick grades Shane's "GOAT" smoothie recipe

    (59:14) Grass-fed vs. non-grass fed

    (01:04:40) On vitamin D (Is sunscreen killing us more than the sun?)

    (01:19:48) Deliberate heat and cold exposure

    (01:44:27) Top three behavioral and diet interventions for life and health improvements

    Watch the episode on YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/c/theknowledgeproject/videos

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    #190 Brad Jacobs: Building a Business Empire

    #190 Brad Jacobs: Building a Business Empire
    Throughout his tenure, Brad Jacobs has built multiple billion-dollar companies. While there is no "playbook" for growing a business, he focuses on a few factors above all else in every company he operates, and in this conversation, he reveals them all.

    Shane and Jacobs discuss how to read anyone during an interview through a series of intentional questions, the exciting role of AI and technology in the future of business, and where money-making ideas hide in companies. Jacobs also shares how his training in math and music made him a better business operator, the one thing he focuses on to grow his businesses, how to spot big trends before everyone else, and the only thing a company should focus on for success.

    Brad Jacobs has started five companies from scratch and led each to become a billion-dollar or multibillion-dollar enterprise. These include three publicly traded companies: XPO Logistics, where he serves as Chairman and CEO, United Rentals, and United Waste Systems. Before starting XPO in 2011, Jacobs founded United Rentals in 1997 and led the company as Chairman and Chief Executive Officer. In 1989, he founded United Waste Systems.
     
    (00:00) Intro
    (04:44) The future of AI
    (07:21) How to think rationally
    (08:48) The major trend
    (10:57) The research process
    (13:29) On asking better questions
    (19:35) On rearranging your brain
    (22:23) On music, math, simplicity, and business
    (32:26) Leverage, debt, and optionality
    (35:11) What it takes to take contrarian bets
    (40:45) Confidence and parents
    (50:21) Why negative-only feedback is detrimental for employees
    (56:14) Money lessons
    (58:13) A deep dive on M&A (Jacobs' secret sauce to growing his companies)
    (01:07:51) Questions to immediately get to know anyone
    (01:11:14) On boards and board meetings
    (01:16:57) On decision-making
    (01:23:37) The role of capital markets
    (01:25:41) The type of person you don't want to hire
    (01:31:16) The best capital allocators
    (01:33:53) Biggest lesson Jacobs learned from the past year
    (01:37:20) On success
     

    Watch the episode on YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/c/theknowledgeproject/videos

    Newsletter - I share timeless insights and ideas you can use at work and home. Join over 600k others every Sunday and subscribe to Brain Food. Try it: https://fs.blog/newsletter/

    My Book! Clear Thinking: Turning Ordinary Moments into Extraordinary Results is out now - https://fs.blog/clear/ 

    Follow me: https://beacons.ai/shaneparrish

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    #189 Chris Davis: Three Generations of Wealth

    #189 Chris Davis: Three Generations of Wealth

    Most families who obtain immense wealth squander it by the third generation. But Chris Davis comes from a family whose grandfather and father all became independently wealthy of each other, and Davis has done the same. How does that keep happening? In this conversation, we find out.

    Shane and Chris discuss life and investment lessons he learned from his father and grandfather, why writing is more important to clarify one's thinking no matter who's reading it, and the surprising benefit of reading physical newspapers and wearing ties to work. Davis also shares his value-investing philosophy, what he learned from working with and meeting Charlie Munger, and what parents can do to raise kids who aren't entitled. Davis talks about his alcohol drink tracker and why it's important to him, why he never puts himself in situations where envy can grow, and Warren Buffett's letter about why investment managers underperform.

    Chris Davis has been a Director of The Coca-Cola Company since April 2018. Davis is Chairman of Davis Selected Advisers-NY, Inc., an independent investment management firm founded in 1969. Davis joined Davis Selected Advisers-NY, Inc. in 1989 as a financial analyst and in 1995, he became a portfolio manager of the firm’s flagship funds. Prior to joining Davis Selected Advisers-NY, Inc., he served as a research analyst at Tanaka Capital Management and as an accountant at State Street Bank and Trust Co.

    Watch the episode on YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/c/theknowledgeproject/videos

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    My New Book! Clear Thinking: Turning Ordinary Moments into Extraordinary Results is out now - https://fs.blog/clear/ 

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    Join our membership: https://fs.blog/membership/

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    (00:00) Intro

    (03:20) Life lessons Davis learned from his grandfather and father

    (26:24) The importance of writing things no one reads

    (36:55) Davis' experiences through financial crises

    (52:31) Why Davis loves managing a mutual fund

    (55:49) Why Berkshire Hathaway operates with margin

    (01:01:05) What is risk?

    (01:04:02) On low interest rates and their future impact

    (01:14:46) The mismatched timelines between CEOs, companies, investors, and policy

    (01:22:19) How Davis and Munger met

    (01:30:20) Lessons learned from Munger

    (01:41:29) Why avoiding weaknesses is the ultimate recipe for success

    (01:55:46) How to raise non-entitled kids and avoid lifestyle creep

    (01:16:10) On happiness

    (02:27:00) Good vs. bad board meetings

    (02:31:34) Three generations of wealth

    (02:37:15) On success

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