Optimal at this altitude, I can run flat out for a half mile before my hands start shaking. Can I ask you a personal question now at the same time? What it's like to be a cybernetic organism living tissue over metal embryos, go to Paris, so. Books I've loved on the Tim Ferris show is exclusively brought to you by Audible, There couldn't be a better sponsor for the series. My dear listeners and readers I have used Audible for so many years, as long as I can remember, I love it.
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Audible Dotcom Tim. Hello, boys and girls, ladies and germs, this is Tim Ferriss. Welcome to another episode of the Tim Fair Show, where it is usually my job to sit down with world class performers of all different types startup founders, investors, chess champions, Olympic athletes, you name it, to tease out the habits that you can apply in your own lives. This episode, however, is an experiment in part of a short form series that I'm doing simply called Books I've Loved.
I've invited some amazing past guests, close friends and new faces to share their favorite books, describe their favorite books, the books that have influenced them, changed them, transform them for the better.
And I hope you pick up one or two new mentors in the form of books from this new series and apply the lessons in your own life. I had a lot of fun putting this together, inviting these people to participate and have learned so, so much myself. I hope that is also the case for you.
Please enjoy high temperature listeners.
It's Whitney Cummings. Thank you so much for letting me do this, Tim.
I'm only picking two books because I just wanted to keep it kind of short and sweet. The first one that I wanted to suggest is a book by Gavin de Becker. It's called The Gift of Fear Survival Signals That Protect US.
It's a lot about, you know, stalkers and violence and stuff like that. But there's a lot of invaluable advice around hiring people and drawing boundaries with people, vetting people for people that want to be highly productive, for people that want to have their weekends off, for people who want to have a drama free workplace, for people who don't want to spend their time and emotional energy on difficult people.
This is a this is a pretty transformative book in terms of learning how to trust your gut and not dismiss red flags or write them off. You know, I spent a lot of time working with people that were exhausting egomaniacs, difficult people, people who would be kind of a time suck in terms of managing their emotions or, you know, people that interpreted constructive criticism as rejection. And then I felt like I to take care of their feelings.
And in this in that I mean, for someone that has those feelings, I also recommend Melanie Betis book Co-dependent No More and the Adult Child of Alcoholics, big book, a big book.
But if you've done that work and you know you're not being codependent and turns out someone's just being really difficult and this book is pretty wonderful for not dismissing your own gut instincts, because a lot of times when someone's difficult, you want to go, well, I'm probably just being sensitive or I probably was too harsh or I probably should have handled it this way or I shouldn't have sent an email that was that direct.
When you start blaming yourself, there's a something I want to read to you so I can start getting more specific on one twenty three page one twenty three of the gift of fear. He writes, If you tell someone ten times that you don't want to talk to him, you are talking to him nine more times than you wanted to. If you call him back after he leaves twenty messages, you simply teach him the cost of getting a call back is twenty messages.
I love that because I don't think I understood that setting a boundary isn't always saying it's setting about you for yourself.
You know, if someone doesn't respect your boundary, you don't just keep setting the boundary. You just have to completely disengage with the person. If they don't have the emotional intelligence acumen or the ability to to read a situation in a way that's appropriate. And it took me a long time to stop engaging in inappropriate behavior at the workplace for me, if something if it was like I just have to spend an hour every day with this person to get them to act the way I want them to, that's an hour more a day that I need to be spending with this person.
So this book really helped me understand that sometimes the only way to win is to not play.
You know, sometimes the best strategy is a masterful retreat when it comes to crazy people that are just not able to take a hint.
So I highly recommend digging into that chapter. There's a great story about this person who is at a workplace who was becoming a problem, and I highly recommend that.
I also earmarked a page one fifty eight for some reason and oh yes, I did.
It's about references.
When you're working with people getting references, you know, I've made a lot of hiring mistakes because I didn't hire people because we get along really well. We have really good chemistry.
Are like this person so funny or, you know, we're both from DC or, you know, like we've all had those things where you want to hire someone that we actually should have just been friends with instead of some we should actually be working with, you know, eight hours a day in high stakes situations. I've made this mistake before. I used to never ask around about people. I used to never get references.
I used to never call like you'd see references on a resume. And they go, well, obviously, if they're numbers there, that counts, that's easy enough. You know, I like to now spend way more time hiring. It helps me save time later in in drama, frankly.
So on one fifty eight, the failure to take the obvious step of calling references is an epidemic in America. And I have little patience for managers who complain about employees that didn't care enough to assess before hiring. A common excuse for this failure is the references will say only good thing since the candidate has prepared them for the call. In fact, there is a tremendous amount of information to be gained from references in terms of confirming facts on an application.
Did you know him when he worked for such and such firm? When did he work for such and such firm?
Do you know roughly what salary he was making? Do you know what school he went to? You said you went to school with him.
I suggested questions asked of those listed as references be guided by information on the application. The most important thing references can give you are other references we call these people develop sources. These are people who know the applicant but whom he did not list as references. Accordingly, they are not prepared for your inquiry and will be more likely to provide valuable information. You get the names of developed sources by asking the references the applicant listed for the names of the people who know him.
I'm reading that now and for some reason it sounds really hard to understand, but it basically means as the references for other references.
So it's people that weren't necessarily prepared for your call to do research before you hire people the same way you would vet someone you date someone you'd marry, someone you have in your home, that people that you work with, it'll save you a lot of time and emotional energy in the long run and you will be more prolific, productive and happy. On page twenty two, there's a great section on public speaking.
A lot of people these days, if you're starting a business, you want to be a performer. If you want to be an entrepreneur, you have to be able to speak in public.
And I think even now, if you only want to be a behind the scenes business person, investor, whatever, you also have to speak at panels. You have to do TED talks. You have to do a YouTube channel.
You know, public speaking now isn't really optional.
Social media, YouTube. So there's kind of a great section on that. And it's a section that's about like rules. What you fear is rarely what you think you fear. It's what you linked to fear. There's a whole section about fear and public speaking quotes.
Surveys have shown that ranking very close to the fear of death is the fear of public speaking. Why would someone feel profound fear deep in his or her stomach about public speaking, which is so far from death because it isn't so far from death when we link it, those who fear public speaking actually fear the loss of identity that attaches to performing badly and that is firmly rooted in our survival needs for all social animals, from ants to antelopes, identity is the pass card to inclusion, and inclusion is the key to survival.
If a baby loses its identity as the child of its parents, a possible outcome is abandonment. For a human infant, that means death as adults without identity, as a member of the tribe or village, community or culture. A likely outcome is banishment and death. So fear of getting up and addressing 500 people at the annual convention of professionals in your field is not just the fear of embarrassment. It's linked to the fear of being perceived as incompetent, which is linked to the fear of loss of employment, loss of home, loss of family, your ability to contribute to society, your value, in short, your identity and your life, linking an unwarranted fear as the ultimate terrible destination that usually helps alleviate that fear.
Then you may find that public speaking can link to death.
You'll see that that would be a long and unlikely trip, just a really great chapter on fear and public speaking and sort of how we link things in our brains.
And that stuff just fascinates me and I think is really important for anyone that wants to be successful, quite frankly. So highly recommend The Gift of Fear by Gavin de Becker.
The second book I'm going to recommend is a title that I just hardly can say out loud.
It's so embarrassing, but it is such an incredible book. It is called Getting the Love. You Want a Guide for Couples.
I can't even say it without laughing. I remember when I first bought this book, I had to do it in person.
It was like kind of before Amazon. And I went to Barnes and Noble back when that was a store. And I went up to the guy and I was like, Can I get this book? It's called Getting the Love.
Like I had to whisper it in the bookstore. I was so embarrassed to say it. And then he said it over the loudspeaker.
He was like, getting the love you want. I'll tell you, it was very embarrassing. But the book is so unbelievable. It's by Harville Hendrix and Helen Kelly Hunt. I mean, Harville Hendrix is really famous for developing Imago therapy. And before I read a chapter to you, I think, you know, I talk about this a lot, but I think that the relationship you're in is a business decision. I know most of Tim Ferris's listeners are chiming in for great business advice, productivity advice.
The person you choose to be your partner is a business decision. The amount of money that you're saving depends on that person.
The amount of time you're putting in your business depends on that. That choice, the amount of emotional energy that you have depends on that choice, the amount of support you get. You know, I feel very strongly that in order to be brave and take risks in. Your professional life, you have to have a very stable, safe, supportive personal life, so I'm a big fan of anyone that wants to achieve wildly astronomical goals. You have to make sure that your home is in order as well and that your heart is in order.
I think it's important that anybody that wants to be successful in any part of their lives understands neurology and neurochemistry.
You guys have heard me blather on about this on page 45 of getting the love you want.
What causes the rush of good feelings that we all call romantic love? Scientists who study natural hormones and chemicals tell us that lovers are literally high on drugs, substances that flood their bodies with a sense of well-being. During the attraction phase of a relationship, the brain releases more dopamine endorphins. Friend two of the body's neurotransmitters. These chemicals help contribute to a rosy outlook on life, rapid pulse, increased energy and a sense of heightened perception. Oxytocin is enhanced as well as a potent hormone that plays a role in many aspects of our lives, including childbirth, nursing, orgasm and bonding of mother and child and social connections between individuals.
Some refer to it as the love sex hormone. During the phase, when lovers want to be together every moment of the day, the brain also ramps up its production of endorphins, natural narcotics that enhance the sense of security and comfort you guys might notice on some level.
But I think it's really important that people understand that, you know, being in love, being attracted to somebody, being in a new, intense, passionate relationship, you're literally high on drugs.
It can be a huge distraction to your work life. If it ends up lasting, that's great. But for the most part, I've worked. A lot of people ask me, how do you do work so hard?
How do you have so much time?
I really try to limit the amount of in my past rampant love affairs because most of it is just neurochemicals. Not everyone is the one, and that's OK.
But I think the really intense, passionate relationships can be a giant distraction ultimately from the goals that you want to achieve.
So I always think it's important that people really understand you because you can meet someone and then lose four months of your life to someone. You're like, I don't even like that person. I was just high on neurochemicals. That was a big waste of time. So I think that, you know, we learn something from every relationship we're in.
But I see a lot of people's careers suffering because they get distracted by relationships that ultimately don't feel that much and lessons that they, quite frankly, don't need to learn.
Page seventy three. There's a great chapter on the stages of a power struggle in a relationship. When you and your partner immersed in a power struggle, you have little sense of when it all started or how it will end. But from an outside perspective, the power struggle has predictable course, one that parallels the well documented stages of grief in a bereaved person. I'm not going to read that whole chapter to you, but that's a really interesting one. And then on page one 15, there's a big chapter on empathizing and being able to see your partner's inner world to understand, because sometimes we say something that's not received the way we intended to be received and we get so confused.
How can they not understand? We're saying because they're seeing it to the lens of their own experience, trauma, parenting and neurology. So there's a great exercise on how to empathize with your partner.
And when you're in a disagreement, you repeat with the other person says it's a pretty great exercise because, you know, how often are we in relationships? And we say something and the other person completely contorted and twisted and you're like, that's not what I said.
And then you start fighting about fighting and you're not even fighting about the things like what were you fighting about?
So what you do to minimize the amount of time that you're in one of these altercations or power struggles.
If I say I'm uncomfortable that you showed up late, the other person has to say, I hear that you're uncomfortable that I showed up late. But this, this and this. And then I have to go. Well, I hear that this, this and this.
But, you know, so you have to mirror what the other person says so that you're actually having a productive conversation that just doesn't turn into, you know, your childhood circumstances and trauma responses clashing and being ultimately a complete waste of time. Because I know Tim Ferriss listeners are very possessive about their precious time. This book is a lot about how we are attracted to people that have the negative qualities of our primary caretakers.
I find that to be incredibly important information, just to know that that is how we lean. In general, our brains want to finish unfinished business in our work life and our professional life and our friendships. We tend to be attracted to people who have the negative qualities of our primary caretaker. So when you're going out on dates, when you're selecting a mate, when you're selecting friends, when you're hiring employees, it's important that you understand that that is going to be what we're attracted to.
And often when we're attracted to the people that have the negative qualities are our primary caretakers, it turns into this thing. That we've been marketed as being called chemistry, I have great chemistry with that person, but it really could just be your inner child going, Mom, is that you, Dad?
And then we end up just having our inner child run the show and for the most part, the people I end up working with are not the people that I have amazing chemistry with, necessarily.
It's the people that hear me when I say something, have direct, clear communication. The people that you work with do not have to be the people you hang out with all the time and text with all day. You don't have to be best with the people you work with. I think between these two books, it's a really good way to make sort of emotion free, clear, logical hiring and partnering decisions so that you're acting from your brain and not your heart.
And so your inner child is not running the show. So again, I recommended Melanie Beedi codependents no more getting the Love You Want from Harville Hendrix and The Gift of Fear Survival Signals That Protect US by Gavin de Becker of.
Hey, guys, this is Tim again, just a few more things before you take off. Number one, this is Pfeifle at Friday. Do you want to get a short email from me? Would you enjoy getting a short e-mail from me every Friday that provides a little morsel of fun before the weekend and fireballer? Friday is a very short email where I share the coolest things I've found or that I've been pondering over the week that could include favorite new albums that I've discovered.
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