21. Adam Smiley Poswolsky: The Quarter-Life Breakthrough

Today my guest is Smiley Poswolsky, a millennial workplace expert, keynote speaker, and bestselling author of The Quarter-Life Breakthrough and The Breakthrough Speaker. Smiley is somebody that I met through friends. It turns out I’ve got three or four friends, who aren’t friends with each other, who all know Smiley. In our conversation today, we talk about the qualities of a good prank, the value of making the ask, not waiting for permission, the gatekeeper is often yourself. Smiley talks about writing the book you need, writing about whatever people are asking you. And then he gets into a few tips about public speaking. So, if sharing from a stage is something that you’re interested to do, Smiley’s a good guy to know. One of the things I love about this conversation is Smiley talks about his lifestyle. It made me think about the healthy writer’s lifestyle as opposed to maybe the unhealthy writer’s lifestyle. Where Smiley’s not fueled all the time by caffeine or alcohol or amphetamines or some of these things that might be conducive for productivity in the short term, but have a very bad outcome. I think Smiley is a great example of somebody who lives a very workable lifestyle that makes a big difference in the lives of many others while simultaneously earning money and having a good time doing it. 

00:02:25 – Burning man prank.
00:11:54 – Camp grounded.
00:18:33  – Who Adam writes to.
00:33:39 – Inner vs outer authority.
00:55:16 – The most surprising thing learned over the course of writing.
01:02:59 – Lightning round.
01:11:57 – Discussing the craft of writing.
01:27:35  – Adam’s process for finishing a book.

LINKS – (In order of appearance)
The Quarter-0Life Breakthrough: Invent Your Own Path, Find Meaningful Work, and Build a Life That Matters – by Adam Smiley Poswolsky
The Breakthrough Speaker: How to Build a Public Speaking Career by Adam Smiley Poswolsky
Camp Grounded
I Am Not Your Guru
Date With Destiny with Tony Robbins
The Landmark Forum
Awaken the Giant Within: How to Take Immediate Control of Your Mental, Emotional, Physical and Financial Destiny by Tony Robbins
Man’s Search for Meaning by Viktor E. Frankl
The Untethered Soul: The Journey Beyond Yourself by Michael Singer
Winners Take All: The Elite Charade of Changing the World by Anand Giridharadas
Daily Rituals: How Artists Work by Mason Currey
Walking on Water: Reading, Writing and Revolution by Derrick Jensen
Confessions of a Public Speaker by Scott Berkun

20. Alan Weisman: The World Without Us

Today I am thrilled to talk with Alan Weisman. He is an author who’s worked on seven continents and more than 50 countries. He’s written six books and the book that I talked to him most about is The World Without Us. It’s a book he published about a decade ago. It began as a thought experiment about what would happen if humanity disappeared from the planet. How long would it take for nature to rejuvenate, or would it at all? He’s a journalist, who wanted to be a scientist as a kid and had so many passions and curiosities that he decided he would write about them all. That inquiry, that spirit of discovery has taken him around the globe and caused him to talk to some really, really interesting people. I hope that what you take away from this interview, and if you read his books, is a greater understanding and appreciation of the beauty and the delicate nature of the planet that we’re all a part of.

00:02:40 – What is life about?
00:03:50 – Alan’s background.
00:13:23 – Concerns about the planet.
00:17:58 – One million people every four days.
00:22:19 – Public and critical response to the book’s release.
00:43:31 – Optimistic, pessimistic, or something else?
00:50:14 – Individual differences that can be made.
00:59:43- Lightning round.
01:07:46 – Two tips for completing a book.

LINKS – (In order of appearance)
The World Without Us by Alan Weisman
Limits to Growth: The 30-Year Update by Donella H. Meadows, Jorgen Randers, and Dennis L. Meadows
The Voluntary Human Extinction Movement
Countdown: Our Last, Best Hope for a Future on Earth? by Alan Weisman
Food is the Solution by Matthew Prescott