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The Art of Manliness


The Art of Manliness Podcast aims to deepen and improve every area of a man's life, from fitness and philosophy, to relationships and productivity. Engaging and edifying interviews with some of the world's most interesting doers and thinkers drop the fluff and filler to glean guests' very best, potentially life-changing, insights.


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The Art of Manliness Podcast aims to deepen and improve every area of a man's life, from fitness and philosophy, to relationships and productivity. Engaging and edifying interviews with some of the world's most interesting doers and thinkers drop the fluff and filler to glean guests' very best, potentially life-changing, insights.



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The Shadows Over Men's Hearts and How to Fight Them

There are a lot of unspoken challenges and hidden battles that men face in modern society. They often manifest themselves in a uniquely male malaise where a man feels apathetic, frustrated, cynical, and lost. Jon Tyson has thought a lot about the problems men face and has been on the ground trying to help them as a pastor in New York City. In today's episode, I talk to Jon about the sources of this male angst that he explores as the co-author of a new book, Fighting Shadows: Overcoming 7 Lies That Keep Men From Becoming Fully Alive. Jon and I discuss how men often try to solve their malaise and why those approaches don't work. We then explore some of the shadows men fight in their lives, including the shadows of despair, loneliness, unhealthy ambition, futility, and lust. Jon offers some advice to overcome these shadows, including sitting around a fire pit with your bros, taking time to develop your telos or aim as a man, and injecting a bit more playfulness in your life to counteract grumpy dad syndrome. Resources Related to the Podcast #810: How to Turn a Boy Into a Man#926: The 5 Shifts of ManhoodAoM longform article/short "ebook": A Roadmap to Manhood in the 21st CenturyAoM Article: Create a Blueprint for Your FutureMan's Search for Meaning by Viktor E. FranklAoM Podcast #702: One Man’s Impossible Quest — To Make Friends in AdulthoodAoM Podcast #867: Dante’s Guide to Navigating a Spiritual JourneyThe Case Against the Sexual Revolution by Louise PerryTheology of the Body by Pope John Paul IIConnect With Jon Tyson Jon's websiteFighting Shadows websiteForming Men websitePrimal Path website


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Patton and the Bulge: Blood, Guts, and Prayer

General George S. Patton is known for his aggressive, action-oriented tactical brilliance. His character was also marked by a lesser-known but equally fundamental mystic piety. Those two qualities would come together in the lead up to and execution of Patton's greatest achievement during WWII: the relief of Bastogne during the Battle of the Bulge. Alex Kershaw tells this story in his new book Patton's Prayer: A True Story of Courage, Faith, and Victory in World War II. Today on the show, Alex shares how, when the Third Army's advance into Germany was stalled by plane-grounding clouds and road-muddying rain, Patton commissioned a prayer for better weather that was distributed to a quarter million of his men, and how that prayer became even more urgent after the commencement of the Battle of the Bulge. We also talk about Patton's qualities as a leader and a man, including his reading habits, how he combined a profane assertiveness with a pious faith and a belief in reincarnation, and what happened to him as the war came to a close. Resources Related to the Podcast #361: The Untold Story of WWII’s 45th Infantry Division#514: Remembering D-Day 75 Years Later#806: The Humble Heroics of Four of WWII’s Most Decorated Soldiers#953: Duty, Honor, and the Unlikely Heroes Who Helped Win the Battle of the BulgeAoM Article: George S. Patton’s Rules on Being an Officer and a GentlemanAoM Article: The Libraries of Famous Men — George S. PattonAoM Article: The Maxims of General George S. PattonAoM Article: General Patton’s Strategy for Winning in War and Life — Keep PunchingChaplain James Hugh O'NeillPatton moviePatton's opening speechThe story and a look at Patton's prayer cardsConnect With Alex Kershaw Alex's websiteAlex on X


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Embracing the Strive State

We often think happiness will be found in the completion of a goal. We often think happiness will be found in ease and comfort. My guest says real joy is found in the journey rather than the destination, and that if difficulty and discomfort are part of that journey, that's all the better. Dr. Adam Fraser is a peak performance researcher and the author of Strive: Embracing the Gift of Struggle. Today on the show, we talk about what Adam calls the "strive state," where we have to grow and be courageous to tackle a meaningful challenge, and why this state is the source of the greatest fulfillment in life. We discuss why we often resist embracing the strive state and what happens when we don't have to struggle in life. We also talk about what successful strivers do differently. Resources Related to the Podcast Adam's previous appearance on the AoM Podcast: Episode #909 — Master Microtransitions to Improve the Happiness, Success, and Flow of Your LifeSunday Firesides: Pursuit as HappinessSunday Firesides: No Bad FeelingsAoM Podcast #708: Overcome the Comfort CrisisAoM Podcast #108: The Upside of Your Dark SideAoM Podcast #868: Escape the Happiness Trap"Pass the Parcel" episode of BlueyConnect With Adam Fraser Adam's websiteAdam on LinkedInAdam on IGAdam on FB


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The Dude's Guide to Laundry: How to Save Time, Money, and Your Wardrobe

If you didn’t grow up doing your own laundry, once you headed out on your own, you probably just figured things out on the fly, hoped for the best, and have been doing things the same way ever since. But, while you may be getting the job done okay, you also might be making some mistakes that are costing you time, money, and cleaner clothes. In this episode from the Art of Manliness department of essential life skills, we’ll cover all the things you should have learned as a young man but never did, and how to do your laundry effectively. Our guide is Patric Richardson, aka the “Laundry Evangelist,” a laundry expert who runs how-to-do-laundry camps, hosts the television show The Laundry Guy, and is the author of Laundry Love. Today on the show, Patric shares the one cycle and water temperature you should use for all of your clothes, exactly how much detergent you should be using (which is a lot less than you think), how often you should wash your clothes (which is less often than you think), why you shouldn’t ever use dryer sheets (and what to throw in your dryer instead), how regardless of what the tag says, you can wash anything at home (including a wool suit), how to easily get rid of stains (including yellow pit stains), and many more tips that will save you time, money, and hassle in doing your laundry. Resources Related to the Podcast AoM Article: How to Do LaundryAoM Article: The Simplifying Step Missing From Your Laundry RoutineAoM Article: How Many Times You Can Wear Your Clothes Between WashesAoM Article: How to Get the Stink Out of Synthetic Workout ShirtsAoM Article: How to Remove and Prevent Yellow Armpit StainsAoM Article: A Guide to Shrinking Levi’s 501 Shrink-to-Fit JeansConnect With Patric Richardson Patric’s website Patric on YouTube


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How to Get Better at Anything

Life revolves around learning—in school, at our jobs, even in the things we do for fun. But we often don’t progress in any of these areas at the rate we’d like. Consequently, and unfortunately, we often give up our pursuits prematurely or resign ourselves to always being mediocre in our classes, career, and hobbies. Scott Young has some tips on how you can avoid this fate, level up in whatever you do, and enjoy the satisfaction of skill improvement. Scott is a writer, programmer, and entrepreneur, and the author of Get Better at Anything: 12 Maxims for Mastery. Today on the show, Scott shares the three key factors in helping us learn. He explains how copying others is an underrated technique in becoming a genius, why, contrary to the sentiments of motivational memes, we learn more from success than mistakes, why experts often aren’t good teachers and tactics for drawing out their best advice, why you may need to get worse before you get better, and more. Resources Related to the Podcast Scott’s previous appearance on the AoM podcast: Episode #557 — Grow, Adapt, and Reinvent Yourself Through UltralearningThe Secret of Our Success: How Culture Is Driving Human Evolution, Domesticating Our Species, and Making Us Smarter by Joseph HenrichAoM Podcast #896: The Art and Science of Getting UnstuckAoM Article: Want to Become a Better Writer? Copy the Work of Others!AoM Podcast #927: Beyond Lazy Learning — The Keys to Gaining and Retaining KnowledgeAoM Article: The Secret of Great Men — Deliberate PracticeThinking in Jazz: The Infinite Art of Improvisation by Paul F. BerlinerStroke of Genius” by Scott EdenConnect With Scott Young Scott’s website


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Of Strength and Soul — Exploring the Philosophy of Physical Fitness

When you’re lifting weights, you might be thinking about setting a new PR or doing your curls for the girls. But throughout history, philosophers have thought about physical fitness on a deeper level and considered how exercise shapes not only the body, but also the mind and the soul. My guest today, Joe Lombardo, is a strength enthusiast who follows in this tradition and has explored the philosophy of bodily exercise in his writing. Today on the show, Joe and I discuss several different ways the philosophy of strength has been expressed over time. We begin our conversation with how the ancient Greeks thought of physical training as a way to develop personal as well as social virtues, and why they thought you were an "idiot," in their particular sense of the word, if you didn't take care of your body. We then discuss early Christianity's relationship with physical exercise and the development of the muscular Christianity movement in the 19th century. We end our conversation by looking at the philosophy of physicality espoused by the Japanese writer Yukio Mishima, and what he had to say as to how strength training moves us out of the life of the night and towards the light of the sun. Resources Related to the Podcast "The Soft American" by JFKAoM podcast and article on the La Sierra P.E. programAoM Article: When Christianity Was Muscular The Greek Way by Edith HamiltonYukio MishimaSun and Steel by Yukio MishimaJoe's writings on QuilletteJoe's writings at the European Conservative Connect With Joe Lomabrdo The Ultraphysical journal


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The No-BS Secrets of Success

Jim VandeHei didn’t have an auspicious start in life. His high school guidance counselor told him he wasn’t cut out for college, and he went on to confirm her assessment, getting a 1.4 GPA at the University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh and spending more time drinking beer than planning his career. Eventually, though, Jim turned things around for himself, going on to co-found two of the biggest modern media outlets, Politico and Axios. Jim shares how he started moving up the rungs of success and building a better life for himself in his new book Just the Good Stuff: No-BS Secrets to Success (No Matter What Life Throws at You). Today on the show, Jim shares the real-world lessons he’s learned in his career. We discuss the importance of matching passion to opportunity, making your own luck, surrounding yourself with the right people, keeping the buckets of your happiness matrix filled, understanding the difference between wartime and peacetime leadership, harnessing the energy of healthy revenge, and more. Connect With Jim VandeHei Jim at Axios


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How to Eliminate the Two Biggest Sources of Financial Stress

There are different philosophies one can have when it comes to money. Jared Dillian’s is built around eliminating as much anxiety around it as possible, so you hardly think about money at all. Jared is a former trader for Lehman Brothers, the editor of The Daily Dirtnap, a market newsletter for investment professionals, and the author of No Worries: How to Live a Stress-Free Financial Life. Today on the show, Jared talks about the two biggest sources of financial stress — debt and risk — and how you can eliminate the stress they can cause. We discuss how three big financial decisions — buying a car, buying a house, and managing student loans — ultimately determine your financial health, and how to approach each of them in a stress-eliminating way. We also talk about how to minimize risk by creating what he calls an “awesome portfolio,” a mix of assets that has nearly the return of the stock market with half its risk. And Jared shares whether cryptocurrency fits into his “no worries” financial philosophy. Resources Related to the Podcast AoM Article: Why and How to Start an Emergency FundAoM Article: Start a Debt Reduction PlanAoM Article: What Every Young Man Should Know About Student LoansAoM Article: How to Buy a Used CarAoM Article: How to Negotiate the Best Deal on a New or Used CarAoM Podcast #536: How to Achieve a “Rich Life” With Your FinancesAoM Podcast #963: Launch a Million-Dollar Business This WeekendConnect With Jared Dillian Jared’s finance websiteJared’s personal websiteJared on X


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The Secret World of Bare-Knuckle Boxing

Have you ever noticed the guy in a fighting stance on the Art of Manliness logo? That’s not just some random symbol; it’s an actual dude: John L. Sullivan, the greatest bare-knuckle boxer of the 19th century. While most people think bare-knuckle boxing came to an end during Sullivan’s era, in fact, it never entirely went away. In his new book, Bare Knuckle: Bobby Gunn, 73–0 Undefeated. A Dad. A Dream. A Fight Like You’ve Never Seen, Stayton Bonner charts bare-knuckle boxing’s rise, fall, and resurgence, as well as the improbable story of its modern chapter’s winningest champion. Today on the show, Stayton describes bare-knuckle boxing’s incredible popularity a century ago, and why gloved boxing took its place while bare-knuckle got pushed into a shadowy, illicit underground. Stayton takes us into that secret circuit which still exists today, revealing the dark, sweaty basements and bars where modern bare-knuckle fights take place and the ancient code of honor that structures them. And Stayton introduces us to a dominant figure in that world, Bobby Gunn, an undefeated bare-knuckle fighter who combines a love of faith, family, and fighting and has helped turn bare-knuckle boxing into what is now the world’s fastest-growing combat sport. Resources Related to the Podcast AoM series on honorAoM Podcast #41: Honor in the Civil War — The Gentlemen & The RoughsPodcast #54: The Life of John L. SullivanAoM Podcast #111: Why Men Fight & Why We Like to Watch AoM Article: America’s First Popular Men’s Magazine — The National Police GazettefightingtalkingTom MolineauxJohn L. SullivanThe Sullivan-Kilrain fightWilliam “Bill the Butcher” PooleGangs of New York bare-knuckle fight sceneFar and Away bare-knuckle fight sceneConnect With Stayton Bonner Stayton on XStayton on LinkedIn


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Why Your Memory Seems Bad (It’s Not Just Age)

Do you sometimes walk to another room in your house to get something, but then can’t remember what it was you wanted? Do you sometimes forget about an appointment or struggle to remember someone’s name? You may have chalked these lapses in memory up to getting older. And age can indeed play a role in the diminishing power of memory. But as my guest will tell us, there are other factors at play as well. Charan Ranganath is a neuroscientist, a psychologist, and the author of Why We Remember: Unlocking Memory’s Power to Hold on to What Matters. Today on the show, Charan explains how factors like how we direct our attention, take photos, and move through something called “event boundaries” all affect our memory, and how our current context in life impacts which memories we’re able to recall from the past. We also talk about how to reverse engineer these factors to improve your memory. Resources Related to the Podcast AoM Article: 10 Ways to Improve Your MemoryAoM Podcast #546: How to Get a Memory Like a Steel TrapAoM Podcast #750: The Surprising Benefits of ForgettingReminiscence bumpConnect With Charan Ranganath Charan’s websiteCharan on IGCharan’s faculty page


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Grid-Down Medicine — A Guide for When Help Is NOT on the Way

If you read most first aid guides, the last step in treating someone who’s gotten injured or sick is always: get the victim to professional medical help. But what if you found yourself in a situation where hospitals were overcrowded, inaccessible, or non-functional? What if you found yourself in a grid-down, long-term disaster, and you were the highest medical resource available? Dr. Joe Alton is an expert in what would come after the step where most first aid guides leave off. He’s a retired surgeon and the co-author of The Survival Medicine Handbook: The Essential Guide for When Help is NOT on the Way. Today on the show, Joe argues that every family should have a medical asset and how to prepare to be a civilian medic. We discuss the different levels of first aid kits to consider creating, from an individual kit all the way up to a community field hospital. And we talk about the health-related skills you might need in a long-term grid-down disaster, from burying a dead body, to closing a wound with super glue, to making an improvised dental filling, to even protecting yourself from the radiation of nuclear fallout. Resources Related to the Podcast AoM Article: How to Use a Tourniquet to Control Major BleedingAoM Article: The Complete Guide to Making a DIY First Aid KitAoM Article: How to Suture a WoundAoM Article: What Every Man Should Keep in His CarAoM Article: Improvised Ways to Close a WoundAoM Podcast #869: The Survival Myths That Can Get You Killed With Alone Winner Jim BairdConnect With Joe Alton Doom and Bloom websiteDoom and Bloom on YouTubeDoom and Bloom on FB


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Skills Over Pills

Over the last decade, there's been an increase in the number of people, particularly young adults, who struggle with low moods, distractibility, and anxiety and consequent difficulties with getting their life on track and making progress in work, friendship, and romance. In addressing these difficulties, people are often given or adopt a mental health diagnosis, and look for a solution in therapy and/or medication. My guest isn't opposed to these remedies. She is herself a clinical psychologist who's maintained a practice for a quarter century that specializes in treating clients in their twenties. But Dr. Meg Jay, who's also the author of The Twentysomething Treatment, believes that a lot of what young adults, and in fact adults of all ages, struggle with, aren't disorders that need to be treated, but problems that can be solved. In the first half of our conversation, Meg explains what's behind the decline in mental health for young adults and how it's bigger than just smartphones. We discuss the dangers of self-diagnosis, the potential downsides of using medications to treat mental health issues, and why she advocates for "skills over pills." In the second half of our conversation, we talk about how mental health gets better when we get better at life, and what skills twentysomethings, and many older adults, need to develop, including the skills of thinking, feeling, working, socializing, and even cooking. We also discuss how porn is affecting the young men in her practice and an alternative to being a self-assurance junkie. Resources Related to the Podcast Meg's last appearance on the AoM podcast: Episode #51 — The Defining Decade AoM series on not wasting your twentiesStudy on whether antidepressants work better than placebosAoM series on depressionSunday Firesides: Congratulations, You’re a Human!AoM Podcast #741: The Exercise Prescription for Depression and AnxietyAoM Podcast #772: How Long Does It Take to Make Friends (And How Does That Process Work, Anyway)?Connect With Meg Jay Meg's website


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The Power of Everyday Rituals to Shape and Enhance Our Lives

When we think of rituals, we tend to think of big, inherited, more occasional religious or cultural ceremonies like church services, holidays, weddings, and funerals. But as my guest observes, we also engage in small, self-made, everyday rituals that help us turn life's more mundane moments into more meaningful ones. In the The Ritual Effect: From Habit to Ritual, Harness the Surprising Power of Everyday Actions, psychologist and Harvard Business School professor Michael Norton explores the way our DIY rituals shape, and enhance, our lives. We take up that survey on today's show. Michael explains the difference between a habit and a ritual and how individuals and families create unique "ritual signatures" even within more standard rituals like holidays. We discuss the different areas of life in which rituals show up and what they do for us, including how they help us cope with uncertainty, savor life, and connect to the past. We get into the function DIY rituals perform in romantic relationships, from deepening intimacy to facilitating a break-up, the role that "kinkeepers" play in keeping a family together, the tricky business of combining family traditions when people get married, how to know when a family tradition should be retired, and much more. Resources Related to the Podcast AoM series on the power of ritualAoM Article: How to Turn an Ordinary Routine Into a Spirit-Renewing RitualAoM Podcast #505: A Man’s Need for RitualAoM Podcast #835: The Power of Ritual"Deja Vu" by Olivia RodrigoConnect With Michael Norton Michael's websitethe "Habit or Ritual?" quiz


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Walden on Wheels — A Man, a Debt, and an American Adventure

Millions of young adults know what it's like to graduate from college with student debt. For some, it's a frustrating annoyance. For others, it's a worry-inducing burden. For Ken Ilgunas, it was a dragon in need of slaying and a pathway to adventure. Ken is the author of Walden on Wheels: On the Open Road from Debt to Freedom, and today on the show, he shares the story of how his quest to erase his debt led him to the Arctic Circle and through the peaks and valleys of living a totally unshackled life. Ken explains why he went to Alaska to work as a truckstop burger flipper and park ranger to pay off his student debt, what it's like to hitchhike across the country, how reading Thoreau's Walden got him questioning how we live our lives, and how that inspiration led him to living in his van while attending grad school at Duke. Along the way, Ken shares his meditations on nonconformity, engaging in romantic pursuits, and the benefits of both de-institutionalizing and re-institutionalizing your life. Resources Related to the Podcast Walden by Henry David ThoreauAoM Podcast #841: What People Get Wrong About WaldenAoM Podcast #473: The Solitude of a Fire WatcherAoM Article: How to Hitchhike Around the USASunday Firesides: The Cost of a ThingConnect With Ken Ilgunas Ken's website


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How to Create a Distraction-Free Phone

Jake Knapp loves tech. He grew up using Apple II and then Mac computers, browsing bulletin boards, and making his own games. As an adult, he worked at Microsoft on the Encarta CD-ROM, before being hired by Google, where he worked on Gmail, co-founded Google Meet, and created Google Ventures' Design Sprint process. Today, he's a venture capitalist and consultant for start-ups, as well as a writer. But, if Jake was an early adopter and booster of the upsides of technology, he was also early in sensing its not-so-positive side effects. Twelve years ago, unhappy with the pull his smartphone was exerting on him, he decided to curb its distractions. He continues to use this distraction-free phone today. Today on the show, I talk to Jake about what motivated him to change his relationship with his phone over a decade ago and what steps he took to do so, including how and why he lives life without a web browser or email app on his phone. We get into what realizations about work and life Jake's gotten from having a distraction-free phone, why he doesn't think using tools like Screen Time or a dumbphone are always the best solutions to reducing the phone itch, and how he also cuts down on distractions on his desktop computer. Resources Related to the Podcast Make Time: How to Focus on What Matters Every Day by Jake Knapp and John ZeratskySprint: How to Solve Big Problems and Test New Ideas in Just Five Days by Jake KnappAoM Podcast #450: How to Make Time for What Really Matters Every Day With John Zeratsky AoM Podcast #972: Down With Pseudo-Productivity: Why We Need to Transform the Way We Work With Cal NewportAoM Article: The Complete Guide to Breaking Your Smartphone HabitAoM Article: 5 Concrete Ways to Develop a Healthier Relationship With Your Phone (No Blocking or Deleting Apps Required!)AoM Podcast #420: What Makes Your Phone So Addictive & How to Take Back Your LifeFreedom appHow We Feel appLight Phone IITime TimerConnect With Jake Knapp Jake's website


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Want to Be Happy? Give Yourself Reasons to Admire Yourself

Happiness and depression can feel like slippery and befuddling things. We can do the things we've been told will make us happy, while still not feeling satisfied. Or, on paper, our lives can look great, yet we feel depressed. And the advice that's out there about these states doesn't always seem to correspond to our lived experience. Ryan Bush has created a new map he thinks can help us make better sense of life. Ryan is a systems designer with a long-standing interest in psychology and philosophy, the founder of Designing the Mind, a self-development organization, and an author. His latest book is Become Who You Are: A New Theory of Self-Esteem, Human Greatness, and the Opposite of Depression. Today on the show, Ryan explains the two dimensions along which we usually plot our happiness, and what he thinks is the missing third dimension: virtue or admirability. Ryan then unpacks his "virtue self-signaling theory" which he thinks can heighten happiness and reduce depression, and which is premised on the idea that if you want to live a flourishing life, you have to give yourself reasons to admire yourself. I really think this is a valuable idea that everyone can get something from and recommend listening through. Resources Related to the Podcast Full and Brief Strengths TestsAoM Podcast #249: The Benefits of PrideAoM Article: The 11 Cognitive Distortions That Are Making You a Miserable SOBMind Over Mood by Dennis GreenbergerFeeling Good by David BurnsConnect With Ryan Bush Designing the Mind website


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Tips From a Hostage Negotiator on Handling Difficult Conversations

In resolving hundreds of kidnap-for-ransom cases involving gang leaders, pirates, and extortionists, Scott Walker, a former Scotland Yard detective, has learned a thing or two about how to negotiate and communicate in a crisis. He shares how to apply those lessons to the difficult conversations we all have in our everyday lives in his book Order Out of Chaos: Win Every Negotiation, Thrive in Adversity, and Become a World-Class Communicator, and we talk about his tips on today's show. Scott and I discuss what a "red center" means in a kidnap-for-ransom scenario and how to create one in your personal life, the "immediate action drill" that can help you stay in that red center, the importance of separating the decision-maker from the communicator in a negotiation and having a "battle rhythm," why you don't give hostage takers the money they ask for right away and how to structure a negotiation instead, and more. Resources Related to the Podcast AoM Article: The 7 Habits — Seek First to Understand, Then to Be UnderstoodAoM Podcast #648: Lessons in Building Rapport from Experts in Terrorist InterrogationAoM Podcast #234: Haggling and Deal Making Advice From a FBI Hostage NegotiatorBox breathingPhysiological sighConnect With Scott Walker Scott's website


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Lessons in Action, Agency, and Purpose From Buying a Ghost Town

In the 19th century, Cerro Gordo, which sits above Death Valley, was the largest silver mine in America, a place where dreamers came to strike it rich. In the 21st century, Brent Underwood used his life savings to buy what had become an abandoned ghost town, and ended up finding a very different kind of wealth there. Brent has spent four years living in Cerro Gordo and has documented the details of the mines he’s explored, the artifacts he’s found, and how he’s restoring the town on his popular YouTube channel, Ghost Town Living. Now, in a book by the same name, he takes a wider-view lens on his adventures there and shares the big lessons he’s learned from his experiences and from the original residents of Cerro Gordo. We get into some of those lessons on today’s show. We first talk about how and why Brent bought a ghost town as a way of escaping a typical 9-5 life and finding a deeper longer-term purpose. We then discuss what restoring Cerro Gordo has taught him about the necessity of getting started and taking real action, how learning the context of what you do can add greater meaning to it, the importance of understanding the long-term consequences of short-term thinking, the satisfactions that come with being a high-agency person, and more. Resources Related to the Podcast Burrow Schmidt TunnelOwens LakeAoM Article: Become a Self-StarterAoM Article:Meditations on the Wisdom of ActionConnect With Brent Underwood GhostTown Living on YouTubeBrent on IGBrent on X


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Get More Done With the Power of Timeboxing

From work to chores to entertaining distractions, there are many options for what you can be doing at any moment in the modern world. We often endlessly toggle between these options and, as a result, feel frazzled and frustratingly unproductive. We feel ever haunted by the question, "What should I be doing right now?" (Or "What am I even doing right now?") My guest will share a simple but effective productivity method that will quash this feeling of overwhelm, answer that question, and help you make much better use of your time. Marc Zao-Sanders is the CEO and co-founder of, a learning tech company, and the author of Timeboxing: The Power of Doing One Thing at a Time. In the first half of our conversation, we unpack what timeboxing — which brings your calendar and to-do list together — is all about and its benefits as a time management system, including how it can help you get more done, live with greater intention and freedom, and even create a log of memories. In the second half of our conversation, we get into the practicalities of timeboxing, from how to capture the to-dos that will go on your calendar to how to deal with things that might pull you away from it. We end our conversation with how you can get started with timeboxing right now and have a more focused, productive, and satisfying day tomorrow. Resources Related to the Podcast AoM Podcast #543: Learn the System for Getting Things Done With David AllenAoM Podcast #972: Down With Pseudo-Productivity — Why We Need to Transform the Way We Work With Cal NewportAoM Article: The Eisenhower Decision Matrix — How to Distinguish Between Urgent and Important Tasks and Make Real Progress in Your LifeAoM Podcast #768: Become a Focused MonotaskerAoM Article: The Productivity Tool I Use to Get Things DoneAoM Article: A Formula for Success — The Power of Implementation IntentionsConnect With Marc Zao-Sanders Marc's websiteMarc on LinkedIn


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How to Shift Out of the Midlife Malaise

When you think about someone having a midlife crisis, you probably think of a man getting divorced, stepping out with a younger woman, and buying a sports car. But my guest today says the often jokey, mockable trope of the midlife crisis we have in our popular culture discounts the fact that the sense of dissatisfaction people can feel in their middle years is quite real, and that the questions it raises are profond, philosophical, and worth earnestly grappling with. His name is Kieran Setiya, and he's a professor of philosophy and the author of Midlife: A Philosophical Guide. Kieran and I first discuss what researchers have uncovered about whether the midlife crisis really exists, how it might be better described as a kind of midlife malaise, and how Kieran's own sense of life dissatisfaction began when he was only in his mid-thirties. We then explore the philosophical reframing that can help in dealing with the existential issues that the journey into midlife often raises, including feeling like you've missed out on certain possibilities and feeling regret over your mistakes and misfortunes. We also talk about how to shift out of one primary cause of the midlife malaise — the sense that your life is merely about putting out fires and checking off boxes. Resources Related to the Podcast Seasons of a Man's LifeAoM series on Levinson's researchTransformations: Growth and Change in Adult LifePassages: Predictable Crises of Adult LifeOrville Gilbert Brim's MacArthur study on "Midlife in the United States"David Branchflower's study on the U-shaped curve of happinessJohn Stuart MillSunday Firesides: Youth Is Not an IdentityAoM Podcast #770: Philosophical Tools for Living the Good LifeAoM Podcast #620: How to Deal With Life's RegretsAoM Article: The George Bailey Technique — Mentally Erase Your Blessings for Greater Joy and OptimismAoM Podcast #527: Father Wounds, Male Spirituality, and the Journey to the Second Half of Life With Richard RohrAoM Podcast #598: Journeying From the First to the Second Half of Life With James HollisConnect With Kieran Setiya Kieran's WebsiteKieran on TwitterKieran's Podcast