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Welcome to the Knowledge Project, the most irregular pod cast in the history of the world with seemingly one episode every three or four months. I'm your host, Shane Parrish, curator behind the front M Street blog, which helps people make better decisions, learn new things and discover how to live a meaningful life. The knowledge project allows me to meet and talk to world class people. We pull back the curtain a little to see what makes them so incredible. On this episode, I have Ed Latimore, a professional boxer, philosopher and physics major from the Steel City.
I traveled to Pittsburgh to record this interview, after which he gave me a private boxing lesson. Let's just say his hands are about as big as my head. Luckily for me, his heart was pretty big, too. This is unlike any interview I've ever done. Listen in and you'll see what.
Ed, I'm so happy to be here with you today. Thank you for coming all the way from Canada. You know, when you said you were coming down originally, I thought you were driving and then driving right back up. My man, this dude is crazy.
I think I think I tried to get was like, you just want to do a Sky podcast or something, man.
And we're like, Now you got to come here, got to meet. You got to do some. I'm really honored and humbled that you traveled some distance to do this.
Well, we're going to step in the ring after and I might not be going back to Canada today. We'll see if you have it.
One of the most interesting backgrounds I've ever seen from a boxer. Physics, you're into chess.
Walk me through like how this happened, you know, so so there's always been my interest in these things outside of, like boxing.
And I've always had the interest in boxing, but I didn't get a chance to for lots of reasons.
And those aren't really relevant, but for lots of reasons why. There were lots of reasons why I didn't get a chance to do boxing.
And then one day I had twenty two or something. Yeah. Twenty 22. I decided I was going to do this and part of that is because I just got out of a relationship that was the last of or four years and I was a total chump about a lot of things.
And one of those things was I wanted to make sure I was in a position to see her every day. So that meant taking a all jobs and not advancing myself and my academics or whatever.
So at the end of four years from from eighteen to twenty two, I was not I had not advanced any way, shape or form as as a man.
And I was like, OK, this has got to change.
And I think I wanted to do was I think YouTube was like just getting started.
And I had been watching five videos and I was like always want to try boxing, let's go try boxing. But at that time it was also getting big. And I knew you had to learn jujitsu for me.
And it was a whole complete system of fighting, not just with your hands. So there was a time for about a year when I first started training for my 22 to 23, where I was doing everything every single night for like six days a week.
I was either in a boxing gym, I was in the octagon training. I was either on a mat learning how to roll.
I was doing kickboxing and I even did judo for a little while.
But I but to twisted my knee and I was like, how use was judo really? Is it worth twisting my knee?
So all of these things, they came together and one day I was a guy I'm just going to go a boxing and go down the line. But it all started with me wanting to do something and put some time and to reference that relationship that I had just got out of an argument that we will never, ever leave my mind and greatly influenced me.
I used to be huge and higher education for the most part.
So am the difference is now I'm, you know, an adult in school pursuing a physics degree, but even there was a plan for that.
But I used to be huge, higher into education.
The girl I was dating, this created some classes because her mother was a professor of biology.
So she'd hear me go on these rants every now and then or these arguments, or she'd bring up biology, go back to school, and I'd give some type of flippant 21 year old answer.
And then one day near the end of our relationship, and you can always tell the end is near and they stop caring about you one day.
She says, what have you done for four years?
Like whether you're pro education or anti education, what have you done for four years to show that there is something I want to do?
Even if you had sat in a mock convent monastery, you haven't done anything for the past four years but show up at my house and eat my food.
And I was like, and I remember. I can't remember. I mean, I'm sure the man in me is editing the tears that may have happened in my memory, but I remember when you are exactly right, I have not done anything.
So when I got in a position to I, I really put the pedal to the metal. And that's how I've been living ever since.
I mean, I took a little reprieve and, you know, that's part of life, you know, up and down. You can't be an all the time.
But even now, until until recently into the past three months or so, I mean, I was in the military boxing, going to school and still trying to be a decent person and from my relationship at home, because that's important, you have to maintain and nurture those relationships.
So that is really where that boxing thing, you know, we kind of moved on to a tangent, but moved moved on to something else.
But I started boxing mainly to do something for four years and now it's turned into a decade. But we started there and I wanted I wasn't comfortable.
Why was it? And it was like, all right, let's go. Let's become something something more than we are. Tell me a little bit about how you juggle between the military in school and a boxing career match your daily routine looks like.
You know, it's funny right now in my life library. So my thought was, so where am I right now? Last semester, I took off. School I took off so I can focus on boxing this semester, I'm taking off boxing to focus on the school, I'm done with my service and the National Guard.
So for the first time in over five years, the only thing I do I mean, I wake up and I still work out, but I don't want to have to walk out at the level of like I'm in the gym two or three times a day and then I'm trying to put that in between school.
And I have drilling on the weekend and I got to come home and do stuff at home. So whatever our time is, it's very relaxed life. I I'll tell you what I think I did to survive because.
Because you know what's funny about pain, right?
When you look back at pain, you can't really remember you can't remember it hurting. Right. But you don't know how you survived it.
I heard this reference to this idea reference to white women who give birth.
It's like apparently it's incredibly painful. Right.
But somehow they do it more than once in their life.
I'm not talking about the new mothers are the ones that have multiple kids who know what they're getting into.
So I was I really I don't know how I survived. I really don't. I think about this all the time. And I think I'm but I know I'm thinking about it from the perspective of having less to do and still fill in the stressed. What I what what I think I did.
I can't tell you what I feel I did because I can't get back to that feeling. What I think I did is I gave up sleep.
A lot of times sleep is always optional.
I'm not one of those guys that can go for four hours of sleep. I need my eight hours on average. With that said, on average is the thing we stress because. OK, so I Monday through Thursday, I mean, we're talking three, four hours sleep Saturdays.
I'm not drilling. I'll sleep ten hours man. I'll get in, I'll figure it out because there was no way to do all that did.
Just isn't I wouldn't recommend it. I'm never going back to a work like that again unless I say unless I have to.
But but you know what? There's something more people like me. I say that.
But the first thing is hard, because my first instinct is to look at a thing and go, I can do that.
That makes sense for me.
And then I have to kick in the secondary support system of my emotions in my life and go, you know what? That's just not going to be the law now.
And now I have somebody in my ear I trust, because when you when you go out the way I grew up, you don't take counsel. Well, and a lot of times that has cost me. And but now I'm at a point where I have a small but dedicated circle, people close to me who say a thing.
And I listen and my girlfriend is one of those people, and she she would check me if she feels like I am going to grab more than I can handle because she don't really I want OK, I want to say she doesn't care if I'm present at home, but I know that's B.S., but I think she's more concerned that I will burn myself out because then I turn into an asshole man because I like here's when I knew it was getting bad, when I was doing all I when I was jumping out of houses, doing dishes, you know, we got we got a nice little arrangement.
She does our cooking, I do our cleaning.
And unless I'm injured, like, I cut my finger real bad, like like a month ago, she was like, my God, do dishes now, but.
Well, then but well, one day I was doing dishes, she says on me and I just snapped at her.
I don't want to do with her cordially. So let alone my wishes is like I'm going, I'm an e mail with them. But but you know.
But do I think. Well, what I do it all over again. We'll only know. But it was necessary because once again, what have you done for four years? And that's always stuck with me and has driven everything. I'm like, you're right. You've got to put Tommy to get farther and get better. Sometimes you just got to here with that tough love aspect. Like before that point, I knew the idea intellectually. Now I know it viscerally.
Like now I will never forget. You got to put Tom in and how you put that time and where you put it in that matter. But the longer you wait, the more work will take.
You know, in my mind, the philosophical boxer, you've written a book called Not Caring What Other People Think is a Superpower.
Tell me a little bit about that book and the experience of writing it. So so the book came about.
It took me a little longer to write it than I thought it would.
I thought about wanting to have it done in like six months and ended up being a year because life Red-Blooded like the things we were just talking about, all that coming together.
And then I'm trying to write the book. I even think about that. I'm blogging. So that's. But but.
But one day. A Twitter user who I'm I'm great, great friends, but I'm sure we'll meet in person one day when we talk a lot.
He knows your you know, your Twitter feed is really great, man. You ever think about putting it together and selling a book of tweets?
I was like, you know what? I had never thought of that. That's a great idea. And then I was like, but there's no way I'm going to feel good about just putting out a bunch of tweets.
So I went through I called my whole list.
I downloaded the the HMO file and I sat there and I was like, OK, I'm I'll take out the best ones.
And then I put together the ones and certain categories, which ultimately became the chapters of the book, and then I'm going to write an essay explaining each one and then more appropriate, I'm going to give an actionable step or an actionable piece of advice for a person to be able to implement this idea in their life. So it all started with that suggestion, and I'm pretty sure I got that suggestion.
Yeah, about about 20 months ago, maybe maybe a little less. And it's just been a constant thing in the making. And then one when it was coming together again, I really like this.
One of the big parts of the book that stuck with me is kind of your philosophy on self-discipline. Can you walk us through that a little bit?
Self-discipline is is highly important, right? You can't if if you wait till you feel like doing something, you'll never do it. And furthermore, if you give in to your feelings about a thing, you will give up on many things, because anything worth having requires hard work.
And hard work, by definition is not pleasant. I don't care what anyone says to you.
Being in shape is great. Running is not great.
I used to tell my friend all the time, you never want to like running. Stop looking forward to become enjoyable. Just go do the damn running and look at the results. With that said, my whole approach to self-discipline is to eliminate the emotional aspect of what are you can fill a thing.
No one's saying get rid of your emotions.
Not only is that possible, if it were possible, your life just becomes a series of like indistinguishable moments. You need emotion, but you you want to control it most.
You don't have emotional control.
When you have emotional control, then you can look at a thing or man, for example, I'm an early riser.
I like how you get up early man goes, Why are you always this early? I'm like, because I need to get up early.
I like how I feel about it. Never enters. It's just a thing that needs to be done. I always say if a thing is important to your success, it doesn't matter how you feel about it. It just needs to be done.
And that's how I view self-discipline. You can't consider your feelings because you're feeling is always your feelings are like always going to find the easiest way for you to do a thing.
They don't want you to work hard. Hard work sucks. But if you want the good things and the cool things in life, if you even want to be you have an average life. You've got to go do hard things you don't want to do. And eventually you you just you just stop thinking about it. And then you learn to see the world as a matter of what must be done versus what must not be done.
You mentioned self-confidence. It strikes me is it would be very difficult to get in a ring without self-confidence.
How do you how do you develop that or how do you think of it that I'm getting in the ring? You know, I never think about my confidence. Is that through process, too? Right.
OK, so you just reminded me of a really interesting thing that happened now in L.A. when I lived out there, I got evaluated by a sports psychologist. We all got evaluated by sports psychologist out there.
And he said, as you get close to the event, you get more confident and then you're more confident, more relaxed as the event occurs. That first that second part, I think, is typical of most athletes.
Why don't you get in there? They say, why don't you get hit the first time?
Then, you know, you're good at that part. Before I get more and more and more relaxed, how my confidence rises and grows, I don't think that my confidence is growing so much as I'm accepting the inevitable.
I've already signed on the dotted line. The fights are already going to go down. And in my mind, the outcome is actually already predetermined.
No one knows what it is, but it's already set in stone. So there's nothing for me to worry about. That is the first thing, that detachment. That's the first thing.
And I think that's the most powerful thing for me about fighting is that I don't care if I get hurt.
I know what's going on to I know I'm going to experience pain. Right. So what is left for me to worry about? I you know, I just got over being now the worst thing that could possibly happen. This happens after I've dealt with that. I've been embarrassed on national television.
I you go and do all these things and you realize the world does not stop. No one cares. It really doesn't matter.
And then you get the confidence to really act as long as you think people care what you do, as long as you think that somehow your little existence is going to make a big ripple in a long grand scheme of things, you're going to be terrified to act.
But once you understand, once you realize it is freedom, it's free. Once you see that no one cares, no one thinks about it, except maybe the people at the moment, like no one cares anymore.
I don't care anymore. Right.
I can like, say, hey, I got stop.
I got knocked down TV and. It doesn't bother me because it's an event that's gone on, I've learned from it and I've taken the best parts of it to make myself better. Most people get too attached to fixated on a single event so they cannot be confident.
So when I enter the ring, I'm not thinking about a bunch of other things going on in my mind by default.
And I don't know how the fighters achieve this, but I know they achieve something similar.
I might not use my wording, but I think the process and the benefit is the same.
By default, I don't worry about anything else going on but the guy in front of me. But I'm not even really worried about him because the worst thing he can do, he can't kill me.
And even if he could in life would be over. What is there to worry about? You go have fun and you perform and you get it done.
Once you realize it, the worst thing you can lose. That's awesome album. Randy Khutor said to me once again, you live in L.A., man. You meet all these people, came to the gym one day and he was giving us a little speech about something.
And he says something once again that will always stick. Much like the four year thing, this will always stick. He said the worst thing that happens to you and your life is you lose a fight, then your life is going pretty great. And that that was when I was an amateur and it stuck with me ever since.
This is just a hobby is fun. People worry about getting punched in the face.
People worry about you, but then you realize just pain, pain, pain is the same as pleasure is a feeling it's going to go away.
But as long as you think, as long as you avoid that, you know, you can't have fun, you can't get the benefits away is a good time. I wish every man would go at least have a box at amateur event. He ain't got to go pro, but it's very easy to become an amateur boxer.
In the book, you talk about the concept of good pain versus bad pain, and you said good pain comes from pushing towards a goal. Bad pain comes from avoiding challenges and you're going to suffer. Either way, you, Munitz, will be better. You walk me through some of the thinking that led you to that. Right.
So I, I, I'm pretty sure when I wrote that the first experience, because I always think like this, I think that everything can be like combined them explained.
And you can take one idea and use it to explain other ideas.
So I'm pretty sure I was actually thinking about like romantic endeavors when I wrote that and I was like, OK, it's going to be hard for what somebody but it's going to be equally hard to relate to always run our away.
And I was like, oh man, that's like the same of fitness. Either you're going to suffer because you're unattractive and you have horrible health. Are you going to suffer while you're working out that painful running?
So what's the difference? Is it all suffering? The difference is one kind of suffering is moving towards something. You want a good body, a good partner.
The other kind of suffering, a pain is going away from things, going away from putting the working one away from being vulnerable and opening yourself up and take a risk.
So no matter what, there is going to be an uncomfortable process. And I think that's just part of the rate of change. Is life always thinking things in terms of calculus? For some reason, the rate of change of life. If you're going up, you're going to have effort to have an issue.
And if you want down, you're going to have an issue. It's just what issue do you decide that you don't want the issue of? Oh, man, I going to put these late nights in and do this work.
I got to go work out at the gym. I got to argue with this person to make sure that we have a good understanding and reach a compromise about a situation.
Or do I want to have the pain of being an NCO on a fat bastard that just sits around in a basement all day and does nothing and no one really likes you get to pick your poison when you're in the ring.
Do you have any emotions going through your head? Like is it a feeling or is it just you're kind of robotic at that point?
I have learned something really interesting about myself. I don't I am completely detached.
That may be more harmful than helpful.
I'm like the other end of the spectrum in that regard.
The on the on the other on the one hand, I think you have the caricature that most people think of, which is like this emotionally reckless boxset is full of anger and just wants to bring pain back. Like Mike Tyson. In the interview they ask him why, why are you so angry? And if I might go this far, right. What's it matter? Oh, that's like one extreme.
I'm pretty sure I'm on the other extreme, and that's not good either.
Ideally, you want some type of emotion you don't want to be.
You want to care enough to not care if that makes sense. You need to care about the outcome enough that you want a good outcome. But you also are more concerned with a process like I take the word very seriously.
Clearly, I couldn't have gone and done things amateur or professional.
I did not take the work seriously.
At the same time in the ring, I'm very, very detached and attached from an outcome.
Yeah. And, you know, and, you know, maybe it's not a weakness.
I think I think a lot of times we we sometimes question how we think about a thing because everyone else around you thinks about a thing in a different way and you realize you're a minority.
That doesn't mean you're wrong, but it's certainly easy to feel that way. So I've wrestled with that a lot.
Should I be more attached to the outcome? Should I be less attached to the outcome? Am I just right?
But I don't feel I mean, I'm not angry at the guy. I can laugh and joke with them before I hang out with them afterwards. It's just a fight. That's just a fight. It's not the end of the world.
We're not like Reverend Other's families apart. I don't even I mean, I'm sure I can't figure it out, but I don't want to trash talk, man. I just go, oh, that's nice. Man can save you when we actually go fight.
So, yeah, it's to me, you know, you enjoy the time in the ring. It's very enjoyable.
How do you stay motivated to get better, like after you win, how do you go to the gym and a couple of days. And he says, OK, let's pretend I didn't have a mastery mindset. What I do have, I have always had and I think this is a good son of an of the coach man.
You couldn't tell whether you won or lost when you start watching film because things start getting picked apart, what you did wrong, what you can get better. And if you want to get better, if you're there to improve, you take them and you start getting to work and you realize.
I always say you always one mistake away from losing the last fight, which means you catch you. OK, man, it's a good thing that I had just learned that from my last one didn't catch up to me.
This fight, like was the fight I lost.
If I had somehow got that lesson beforehand and I'm fired, but I didn't lose and I'd be like, OK, I learned it.
And then come Keywood for but but stay motivated. Even if you didn't have all that, the one thing you gotta realize is that you're never going to be perfect and aim for perfection.
Once again, I think of things in terms of calculus, you are approaching perfection. The limit is that approach is perfection.
You keep pushing hard work. If you keep doing work, you're going to get closer and closer and closer. But that's got to be your goal. You always going to be improving.
I always tell people to talk about when they want to box. And like, if you want to do this, you I'll tell you the reasons why you shouldn't you shouldn't do it for money because there is no money in boxing.
You shouldn't do it for to to prove the haters wrong, because I still want to hate not just going to wait for you to mess up and you definitely shouldn't do it for any female attention. You should do this because something deep inside you who just says, man, you got to get in the ring, man, you got you got to you got to get better.
And no one can take that away from you.
You could never make it down. Everybody could hate you. You could get injured. No one can take away take away from you the feeling of mastery, the feeling of getting a thing and being like, oh, I can do that.
I couldn't do that a month ago.
And that's like my favorite part about being in the gym is like I can do a thing now that I couldn't do.
Like like skipping rope is a how terrible world skipper. I crossed my arms and jump and all the stuff. But I had put in Tomko every single day. I used to have a horrible job because I couldn't figure out the mechanics, but in my mind I was like, I I'm going to I'm going to get a good job. I'm going to get a good job because my coach is important and now I understand enough to know it's important. Sanon Artaud, Jambon.
These are the things you just you got to always want to be better.
What do you think athletes have coaches and most other people don't have coaches are not even don't have them that are dismissive of them. Like nobody's in my car coaching me how to drive better.
Right. It depends on the task really. So why do athletes have coaches?
Why did he the a lot of business owners hire a coach. Why do life coaches, the good ones, right. Exist?
Some task you need constant feedback about, you need constant feedback because the human being's natural tendency is entropy to always seek the easiest way.
The configuration of events that will result in the least output of energy is there to make sure that doesn't happen.
Furthermore, Koch is there to correct you when the little things are occurring, the little deviations are occurring that will eventually take you one way.
And by the time you get there, you don't realize they were occurring. We don't use your the example. Why don't you ever coach your car? Well, or if you make a deviation, you're going to know real quick. If you're going straight or nine, you can adjust out on your own.
The self-correcting mechanism is there.
The self-correcting mechanism is not there for for an athlete or for business owner or a person trying to promote a life is just not I mean, even if they know and they're the best thing or even Tom Brady still as a coach.
He's the all time whininess to a quarterback in history.
How all these records and a great play to me as a coach, because when you have all so many parts, you know, we just look at a God throwing a football and playing a game, but we forget we're looking at over 20 years of parts that have learned to work together.
The slide is little bit of the slide is part of that system.
Getting out of whack and out of alignment will bring them down.
A coach's job is to up fix that. That's messed up. Fix that and keep everything tight like that a lot.
In the book, you also had some profound thoughts that I want to hear your explanation on, on whether it's easier to ask for forgiveness or beg for permission.
Oh, man. Both of those. OK, so so so does my personality, man. I don't really I'm really bad at moderation. I'm just bad at it. That's why I don't drink. Right. It's easier for me to to not drink than it is to figure out what's one's what's enough and what's not enough. Right.
So would that take going from that base of lacking moderation, forgiveness and permission, in my opinion, are two kinds of moderating activities.
You ask for forgiveness when you've done a thing and you need to buffer or mitigate the effect of your actions. Likewise, you ask for permission when you're pretty sure you're going to incur the wrath of someone.
But by definition of you wanting to do it, at the very least you'll be someone who satisfied.
So so it's his way of existing to please the most people you can.
And I don't really care for that either.
This doesn't really lead to a happy life, doesn't lead to a happy life.
So what you have to do is you have to get very comfortable acting and doing with what you think is best for you. That's what I think is the secret to a happy life.
I'm not talking about being selfish and I'm not talking about being a criminal or anything.
When people hear that, because it's it's a nuanced thought, they automatically jump to the negative or positive over the extremes thing.
And I can express respect. Sure. But you're missing the point.
The point is you need to get comfortable. You need to be able to do what you feel is best for you.
If you do that enough times, you will see certain things.
The way that you look at is like maybe soft or altruistic. No, those are great activities. For any other reason, you be a nice and con everyone you meet because it's the best thing for you is I always say there's no disadvantage to being likeable.
You end up in a position to have more influence and to be have more people like you if you're likeable.
I'm just using an example because people talk about, oh, what about doing things to make people like you like.
Yeah, but you're doing it for your friend, just doing it for them. And everyone wins.
It's like the idea they talk about economics.
Why did the black hand of economics or something like that, where have you just let the market be free? It will adjust and sort itself out where it would be. If you just let people pursue their interests, eventually they'll do what's best for the group. I really believe that.
And that's where that forgiveness permission idea came from.
Either one is an attempt to kind of reconcile clashing feelings and perspectives in mind.
You don't need to worry about. I just just do. It's going to work best for you.
If people got a problem with it, they'll disappear. And if they don't, they will gravitate towards you and your influence and the happy life you'll have or just become happier and better and you'll be able to better serve the people to do stick around.
Speaking of people that disappear, one of the other aphorisms in the book that kind of caught my attention was as you. Raise your value, more people want more of you, but you want less of them. Ah, that's, um. What does use, like a hot girl, for example, start there? The hotter she is, the more guys on a data, but because she's so attractive, she will.
Most guys, by definition, will not meet her standards because everything is like a pyramid respect right at the bottom of the pyramid, almost as the as everyone. Right.
And then you move up and all the people to the bottom below, you are like, oh, reach up. And I want to be higher up. And they're like, why would I want to go lower?
Right. And once you're at the top of the pyramid, are very close to the top.
There's so many people who will be like, I want to reach out. And you're like, wah, wah, wah, wah. I let you pull me down. And that's the struggle that happens all the time.
You as the individual you become, you start to radiate a certain type of energy.
And it's and hopefully it's positive. Right. And as you radiate that positive energy, as you become a better person, as you become more influential person, as you improve your life, people go a that's a great person.
I want to spend more time on that person.
But then a funny thing happens there that they think that. But they don't they're not at your level.
And they're like, OK, it was a tradeoff. You don't have a lot of time and of a little bit of time. So you've got to decide, am I going to go spend time?
Am I want to give my energy or I'm going to continue to do myself and do better and poor. Those people probably hopefully it inspires them to improve.
But that that big discord, that great discord that occurs more people want in your time as you become more valuable, you experience that when people will not improve, but they just want to spend time around you because they see you as like, you know, something worth spending time.
Do you see that changing the standards of the people you hang around like your friends and you're like, how does that influence? OK, so I've been I've been really fortunate.
I've been the victim of positive peer pressure. I've always had great friends.
And they have always I feel like now I'm starting to catch up to the people they are. To put it in perspective, how did you come to the conclusion that you wanted to stop drinking?
You know, I looked at everything in my life, what I wanted to accomplish or I was going to potential I had I wasn't satisfied with what was in my life.
And I did a quick 80-20 analysis and I was like, huh?
In fact, I used to say I used to say, if I say 95 percent of my problems, my personal problems are exacerbated, are caused by the influence of alcohol, which is like an embarrassing thing to say now.
Oh, man, I was content with what was my life being a shit show because of drinking.
Was it was that bad? Right. But it wasn't what I wanted it to be. Once I realized what I wanted to be. And I looked at all things and I said, alcohol is a commonality there. Alcohol is a commonality of alcohols and all of this, what is the benefit? Do I need to keep drinking? No.
OK, see you. And that's how I know I'm not like that's on. I'm not an addict.
Like all the guys that I've talked to who would have been able to just quit like that are not addicted in this sense.
Or a lot of the guys are the ones that like, just stop smoking cold turkey, for example.
I was like, I don't want to smoke anymore smoking smoke for five years. And though those are those are the true I can quit when I want to die people and I don't smoke. I've never smoked. I'd imagine my brain chemistry is probably somewhat similar.
But yeah, I just looked at everything and I said, you know, this is not going to work for me now. One down my drink again once I've accomplished some things I want. But right now and I have no desire whatsoever.
What happened when you start, what did you notice that you didn't expect you ever watch Angel, the old show Angel that by the vampire with a soul and he was a vampire.
So he did a lot of ill shit as a vampire. And all of a sudden he's got a soul and I feels guilty about it.
And so he spends a lot of time brooding and feeling bad and trying to do good, to make up for all the evil people to the world.
That is something that no one warns anyone about.
Like a lot of people I talked to who stopped drinking.
No one ever mentioned that. And I don't think I'm unique in that regard because I've mentioned it in pangas where I give it to me all the time and talk about that exact same experience.
I say that, you know, it's like taking the sunglasses off and seeing the light.
Your eyes hurt because they're getting used to the light.
And the sunglasses analogy would like your emotions not. My emotions are muted. I feel things completely. I'm not celebrating with alcohol. I'm not drinking alcohol. When I'm down, I got to experience and enjoy life the right way.
And likewise, I can look back at all the stupid things that I did, not a stupid ways I may have behaved. And I feel genuinely terrible about it. And no one ever warned you that that's what happens.
How did it change the people you hang around?
What wall? I'm fortunate because I have the good friends. Right?
So it didn't really change that at all.
It has absolutely.
I know myself well enough to know that if I was still drinking, I probably wouldn't have gotten dormi my relationship now, not because I would have been like me or I just would have been an asshole about a night, maybe chasing girls.
Who knows what it is in terms of the people that I hang around, I'm probably not meeting people that I would have met, might get invited to things where I would feel bored. I got a theory about people, at least my kind of drinker.
I got a theory.
I go like I'm going to be like, bored here.
So I'm going to drink. I get excited for myself, have some fun. A lot of stuff bores me.
So I don't go to a lot of stuff now. But I do love spending time one on one with my friends. I like the way we talk right now. That's how I do all my socializing. I haven't been to a group of men.
I'm going to a birthday party this weekend, but it's like I'm the person that I know really well and is a really good friend and invited me and understands how I think and view the world.
So. So I know I'll be fine there. Yeah.
I mean, I don't I don't spend any time on group activities because it's boring.
And you're a huge believer that hard work and discipline are a precursor to success or deserve success.
Can you tell me how you would instill that in other people or kids or when you're coaching kids, how do you foster that?
Kids have to get used to the idea that there is no such thing as being naturally gifted. So the first thing you do, I mean, we're going to work from the assumption that children are a blank slate, whether you believe that or not is irrelevant. But for the sake of this argument, there's enough truth in it that we can use that as a basis for what I'm going to say.
You have to begin speaking to children immediately in terms of effort as opposed to any ability. There's no such thing as a good child.
There is no such thing as a child that was able to wait ten minutes and be quiet.
There's no such thing as a kid is good at math. There is a kid there was able to struggle to a problem.
You don't want to get children used to the idea of instant gratification.
There's an odd they have to wait for things. They have to work and earn everything, even if it's a small thing.
When I say working around, I mean, they have to get used to the idea of effort equals a thing.
Like if a kid wants to go, like, have candy, I say don't give them candy. Right? I mean, I am saying that at the core. But but this argument I'm not saying don't give them candy. Say, OK, you want candy, I'm going to need you to do X, Y or Z. I mean, obviously, like good more things that will help them become better, but they must learn the concept of exchange.
I think the quicker you can get a child understand the idea of exchange, man, I'm speaking hypothetically. I mean, I'm sure as a parent are you hearing is going that is impossible.
Maybe it is. But based on some experiences in my past, I've got more experience raising children and people probably think I know what that said.
I think the sooner you get a kid to understand, then nothing in the world is free. Right.
And they don't have to. I have an economics understanding. It's going to understand. I got to do a thing for a thing to happen.
If I don't do some things, some bad things don't happen. And that's what good parents do.
You just got to keep it up with academics and behavior and things like that. And I think that you start there as they get older.
I think I think the sooner you can get them into some type of skill based things are effort based thing that will make them see the value of practice and work.
I think that's good, too.
You know, whether it's it's like there's this thing kind of music going on now and ah, you can get a kid to go like one even going running with you, just having fun with that, just getting them comfortable with the idea.
Like life is not always enjoyable, it's not necessarily bad, it's just not always a pleasant show for. Relaxing and having a good time, you want to get the sun supposed to all be enjoyable, right? Right.
So often it seems like parents are focused on preventing disappointment, only giving happiness, not instilling those.
And that is not life. I mean, that's like that's the equivalent of raising a teenager in college and expecting them to understand the real world.
That's turning out. So so far for a lot of young kids, people cannot expect the world to always be nice.
This is foolish is way better. What was that saying? All of these cliches, man, I got a few of them.
It's not about waiting for the rain to stop. Is learning how to dance during a storm.
And that's the truth, you know, because there is ebb and flow. We can't always be good and you wouldn't want it to be good.
It's like music. My music is not enjoyable because it's not you. It is the space between the notes.
You need things to not be there. You need things to not be good to appreciate.
When they are there, when they are good people try to avoid that not part all the time, only to realize that it's just not fun.
Right. You had some pretty profound thoughts on relationships in your book as well. Can you kind of walk me through your your high level view of your philosophy on this?
My great my my high level view of relationships is that it's better to build a life and bring a person into it than it is to try and build a life around a person.
If I could sum up everything and give you like the metal framework to work with, that is the framework you want to start with.
You want to go, ah, how am I going to become a better person? And that's going to force you to become a better person. That's going to force you to grow. It's going to force you to improve, is going to force you to become more attractive. It's going to force you to focus on any goal.
And then when you meet the right person, then the right person is better able to fit in because there's not going to be compromise, I think compromise is one of the worst things you make in a relationship.
You have to make good on some things.
Like, explain that to me. I like the compromise, so you should compromise on certain behaviors or you should improve. You should you should learn how, because you're never going to be 100 percent compatible with a person. And that's not the goal. The goal is like, OK, you're seventy five percent compatible. How do we make that? Twenty five percent work? That's where you start compromising.
But when I hear stories about guys moving all the way across the country for granted, they're their only member for six months and probably better if you just meet one there and you'll be happy to consider the stress of a new one.
When I hear like, what's the what are some of the worst ones I've heard so many stories of?
Our girl, this is an extreme version, right, a girl that decides she's going to forsake our entire family to marry a guy.
I'm like, OK, I see what I see.
I did like and I agree with that. In theory and application, you have just ended the entire association with the people that invested Tommy.
Now, granted, you didn't ask to be here, whatever, but there's a lineage and a history to come to that.
I mean, that you're depriving your future offspring of having a family and for what?
So you could do a thing far better to build around the life that you're actively making.
Some of that is circumstance, your family somebodies career that you're making.
But I think I think prematurely getting into a relationship means the relationship or the foundation is just not as strong. And people forget the foundation you start you it's not with the people of Darfur, you. And then when your foundation is strong, you select better. You have better standards. You know, again, I mean, there's an inverse relationship between the amount of crazy I dealt with and where I was at in my life in terms of the woman.
And now that I'm a trusted position, I have such a wonderful person. I sit there sometimes on my own man.
I don't fucked up.
I don't know when one is going, like, correct itself, but like it will. And I felt I mean, yeah.
So some guys listen to your friend of mine called it like a bad idea, but like now I feel genuinely blessed.
Right now I sit and I go man. This is going to look like there's a weird that, but that's the fight you should have, I guess you should. And likewise, I'm sure or I hope anyhow that she has a similar thought. Right. And.
If you're approaching the ideal, you're approaching something that does not exist, but you want to exist, you should be approaching a relationship as if your introduce you like your hardware company, you wouldn't build the company around somebody that you do not what you know, you build the company first.
You find the employees, the fit or the employee, whatever your style is.
But that is my high level view. Everything else I say, I think you realize in total everything else I say. Can be traced making that idea happen. You also mentioned something about I forget the exact wording, but it was like you can learn more about watching a couple argue for five minutes, then be happy for five years. What did you mean?
Oh, my goodness, man, this is beautiful.
And you can you can tell a lot because everybody is great friends when everything is getting along, every every relationship is perfect.
One is perfect. When it's not going well, then you get to learn about.
OK, like we were saying about how music is not just the notes playing, but it's the notes not playing. Life is not just about the enjoyable parts, it's about the not enjoyable parts to. Everybody gets into relationships with that same mentality that's got to be fixed. They want it to be good all the time, but that ain't going to happen.
So when it goes bad, then you get to learn, OK, how do we how is this person's conflict resolution?
How do they work together? How do they see problems?
I can't tell you how many people I watch that see disagreements is an attack on the other person and as a way to bring down Assad, every victory in an argument bring me the person down on us instead. If you want to make a relationship work. Right.
And this is how I would do it. You need to look at it as a here's a problem, but we got to solve how are we going to solve this?
And us not solving them is part of the disagreement right now, in fact, that we could even say it is the sole disagreement.
This problem that we have and we have two different ways, two different approaches, perspectives on how to solve. The key this is where that compromise now becomes important is not important in the 80 percent is that 20 percent of you disagree.
And that's what a compromise is important.
How are you guys going to work together to get the thing done so you can learn a lot? You can't learn a thing about a couple when they're having a good time. You learn everything. When they're having a bad time, who yells, who raises their voice, who shuts off, who broached the subject objectively, who starts attacking character as opposed to the problem? Who brings up old stuff?
Odyssey's comes here. Who stays on target?
You look at this, you can get a whole map and a more experience you have looking at this. The more you can look at a cop, one go.
I know exactly how long you have left.
Like, what's your experience with couples that are happy and how they argue? Is it all of the kind of that compromise or trying to find a solution instead of mudslinging or.
I have a buddy coming up this game where he's been with this girl five years and my best friend out in L.A., I was the best man at his wedding, get married when we're twenty three.
So and they were together for like four years beforehand. So over ten years.
How do they argue I haven't really seen my friend get married coming up and Joe married, but the couple in Cali, I've seen them argue freedom's. They. They never say never or very rarely, no, I've never seen it, I'm thinking about they don't want one another. That that always stood out to me. And I always took that as a powerful lesson, they never insult one another.
Now they are highly critical of how one might handle the problem that occurs.
But in terms of character assassinations, those do not happen.
They are focused on solving the problem, not on destroying each other. You know, they don't view each other as adversaries. And that's what happens. And I think that's the commonality ought to have become otherwise. They'd never, ever view each other as adversaries, ever. They're always some always in my house. I use the word Timal on my word team. We're working together as long as we're together. As far as I'm concerned, we're a team.
And you either on my team or not on my team, she's part of that. And that's good.
So I think that's a really powerful framework. That's the framework I certainly observe.
And all the successful couples that I have had a chance to see up close and personal when I thought we would get married in like the sixties where it was a different game.
This I get two thousand eight, maybe teamwork, teamwork, working together each other when one goes down, you know, whether there was all this argument after the day about whether it's even possible to find or not, it definitely is possible. It's going to build the life you want and you're going to want that. Some guys and some guys I want to put the work into.
But I believe we do those two things. Then you attract a person that will be a great teammate for you.
What's it what's your philosophy of happiness and what that means and how to achieve happiness is happiness is not an average rate.
It's a rate of change. You Dargo thing and calculus. Right?
If a person since still, no matter where they're at, whether they have a blood juice, money, there's a bunch of money or no money, they just sit still and do nothing in their life.
They're going to be unhappy.
We tend to think of people being rich is happy, but no, there's nothing for, nothing that pushes them, nothing that makes them grow and change. You're going to be miserable and poor. You can be miserable. We encourage you to be miserable in a relationship and be miserable single.
What are you doing to push yourself all happinesses, in my opinion, as a person pushing towards something, not the avoidance part that's troubling, is this weird type of intertwined while you're pushing toward some pain is part of it.
Happiness is like the other part, and they all kind of work together. And if you rest on your laurels too long, you become unhappy.
But you always have to push towards something. And if a person wants to be have a happy life, they must always have a challenge to push towards. This is why I think the people I observe who are great parents are not even great parents, are good parents.
There's a general I don't want to call eliteness because that's not correct.
Maybe I don't know. They they feel that every day has a purpose because the purpose is raising this little person and because there's purpose.
There are goals maybe not explicitly stated, but but certainly outcomes that one is trying to achieve, processes they're trying to enjoy.
And I think that's why having kids does such a thing for a person. They say having kids makes you grow up mature or whatever. I think what it really does, it makes you focus on what's going to make you happy and you got to make it happen in that process.
And you quickly realize that happiness is not.
Material. It's easy to have a temporary boost of happiness, but a material thing, but all it is, is a change of position. There's that rate of change once the change is not happening anymore. You're back to being unhappy.
So your whole life and you want to be happy, you got to push towards something. Didn't matter what you push towards, doesn't matter what you want to be, what you're trying to become. You got to try and come. You have to try to become something.
You've an interesting philosophy on that. You said don't don't tell people what you're trying to become. Just talk about what you have become.
Yeah, man. Social media age. Right. We are infected with this.
This disease of self promotion, but not self promoting what we've done with self promotion and what we plan to do, and then we get a bunch of people to go, oh, man, good luck.
Go forward you go, girl. Whatever you see.
And your brain is I mean, this is true.
There's a lot of research on this.
Your brain goes, holy shit, look at our disapproval. We must already did it. Why are we going to keep doing work now? We're going to stack of this. There's just no benefit of talking about what you've done.
At best case scenario, you do it right, which is what you were trying to do. Worst case you don't. And if you don't, now you've told all these people that you are going to, but there's nothing to show. So now do you do you do your job and what do they call the dopamine? Will you get back on? And you talk about the newest goal? I mean, I don't know. I don't think I've seen you on Facebook at all, but I'm sure there's some version is us on Twitter tends to skew kind of different in terms of the activity that goes on amongst users.
You see, every someone goes, I'm trying to lose this amount of weight.
I want to do this. I'm going to start this and Mulago out a bunch of likes and there's a big rally behind them.
And in three months, same share in the same spot. Nothing happened. Nothing changed. And why? Because they got all the validation. Your brain look. I'm never going to be the guy who says motivation doesn't count for a thing and motivation is important, but it's a finite resource and it will exhaust itself.
And when that falls off, you've got to rely on maybe habit system and necessity, all kinds of things to get you through.
But because that system is in place, it can be hijacked.
And one of the ways we hijack it as we go and we we get all this false recognition, if I can have gotten a reasonable amount of recognition in my life for things that I haven't done, I'll tell you what, it's a life is a lot better and it's less nerve wracking when a person congratulations for something and then they can also go look it up independently online and go, oh, OK.
All right. He really did that.
Yeah, it is.
But what if a person but I mean, like when I, when I'm, when I go Buddy tells me he wants to do some cool. I never ask about it again because I don't want to stress them out.
I know they can do it otherwise maybe they'd be all over it. I would, I wouldn't.
I didn't hear about it. Right.
But you, you don't hear the result and you just with habits and the systems, the.
What's one habit you've changed recently that's made a profound impact on you? Day one of this celebration. This is this is rosily but but it's true, I wash the dishes as soon as I'm done here.
How is that impacted you, Ari?
So so I'll know. When I was growing up, my mom used to do that, like, right away you'd be, like, eating your last bite and she'd be grabbing the plate and. Yeah.
So I used to make the bed up immediately when I got out of bed every morning. But but I didn't. And then I switched to the dishes.
What does this do?
First of all, it establishes some irregularity to I got to do the dishes anyway if I'm already up and moving around.
Man, I'm telling you this is the best part about studying the sciences. Right? Not not like this. The knowledge, but the analogies you can make. Man, inertia is real.
The minute you sit down, you do not want to get up. And if you keep moving, you don't want to stop.
That's all inertia is right. And objects know resistance to a change of acceleration.
If you are already moving around, putting dishes and I just while I'm standing, I go, I do these dishes right now.
Now I don't have to think about it. It's already taken care of.
And when I sit down to go do something else, I don't have to worry about doing work or other. I don't have to worry about interrupting my work to do that.
I don't have to worry about one to the kids are smart and funny. I don't have to worry about the cats, but I don't have to worry with my girlfriend why I called them this morning.
And you know, I don't have to worry about it. I have all I've done. It's a small thing, but I've received so much. Maybe that maybe that is a sign of how cool life is these days that like that little Hajigak makes such a big difference.
But I think the bigger lesson is that if you going to take advantage of inertia and just do things when you're already moving so you don't have to start, restart, start, restart, your life would be a lot easier.
You don't have to think about motivation to do dishes are clean your room or your home or whatever you got to do or go running.
It's why get out of bed. My my secret to getting up early is just to start moving.
You don't have to have to do anything. Just don't sit down for fifteen minutes. You'll be surprised by how awake your Arman is. Sixteen.
You know this has been an amazing conversation that working people find you online on my Twitter account is great.
I'm always saying stuff on there. That's how you found me. So that's at Ed Latimore, Altimari and Ed at the beginning. I let them on one.
I'm hoping that someone website spelled out and my website is just w w w dot ed Latimore dot com. So my name and my name always on your name. And I learned that early on in the and the Internet game. You own your name and people can find you easier.
So Ed Latimore, just like it'll be tight on a podcast or on Twitter and on and my website. And I'm also on Facebook. I have a Facebook page. I post there occasionally sign up for the mailing list, see something that I sent that email today about some stuff that I don't always post because I'm I like to communicate with everyone and just express my thoughts. And likewise, your thoughts. Backs are love if you stop by and drop some thoughts off.
Thank you so much. This has been great. Thank you very much. Hey, guys, this is Shane again, just a few more things before we wrap up.
You can find show notes at Farnam Street blog, dotcom slash podcast. That's fair. And S-T REIT blog, dot com slash podcast. You can also find information there on how to get a transcript.
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