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Notes from "Tribe of Mentors"

These are my notes from "Tribe of Mentors: Short Life Advice from the Best in the World" by Tim Ferriss. Tim is uniquely positioned to write this book from his experience with his popular podcast. The book is organized into summaries from some of the top performers in the world in a variety of fields – authors, Navy SEALS, CEOs, movie directors, and more. The book is a great way to get exposed to a variety of different people.


Books that were recommended a lot by guests:

Mans Search for Meaning, by Dr. Viktor Frankl

The Rational Optimist, by Matt Ridley

The Better Angels of Our Nature, by Steven Pinker

Sapiens, by Yuval Noah Harrari

Poor Charlie's Almanac, by Charlie Munger


Often all that stands between you and what you want is a better set of questions.



Matt Ridley:

2 books that have greatly influenced my life are, The Double Helix, by James D Watson, and The Selfish Gene, by Richard Dawkins.


"Self-sufficiency" is another word for poverty.



Dustin Moskovitz:

The Back Buddy, by the Body Back Company is my favorite purchase of the last 5 years.



Max Levchin:

The best, most enduring partnerships in business and in life are among people who are constantly growing together. If the person you choose to depend on is constantly striving to learn and improve, you too will push yourself to new levels of achievement, and neither of you will feel like you have settled for someone who you eventually outgrow.



"It is impossible to live without failing at something, unless you live so cautiously that you might as well not have lived at all, in which case you fail by default." - J.K. Rowling



Adam Robinson:

Meditation is one of the most practical, powerful, productivity-enhancing tools ever created.


The second problem with trying to understand the world is it is simply far too complex to grasp. And the more dogged our attempts to understand the world, the more we want to explain events and trends in it, and the more we become attached to our beliefs, which are always more or less mistaken – blinding us to the financial trends that are actually unfolding. Worse, we think we understand the world, giving investors a false sense of confidence, when in fact we always more or less misunderstand it.


The most powerful trends won't make sense until it becomes too late to profit from them. By the time investors formulate an understanding that gives them the confidence to invest, the investment opportunity has already passed.



Tim O'Reilly:

Work on stuff that matters.

Create more value than you capture.

Money in a business is like gas in your car. You need to pay attention so you don't end up on the side of the road, but your trip is not a tour of gas stations.



"The reasonable man adapts himself to the world. The unreasonable man tries to adapt the world to himself, therefore, all progress depends on the unreasonable man." - George Bernard Shaw



Kevin Kelly:

I try to give my best ideas away in hopes that someone else will do them, because if they do them, it means I wasn't the only one who could have.



Ashton Kutcher:

Be polite, on time, and work really f***ing hard until you are talented enough to be blunt, a little late, and take vacations. And even then, be polite.



Mr. Money Mustache:

The key to a great life is simply having a bunch of great days.



David Lynch:

A real good failure gives a person tremendous freedom. You can't fall further down, so there's nowhere to go but up. There's nothing left to lose, so this freedom is almost like a euphoria and it can open doors in the mind that lead to what you truly want to do. And in the doing of what you truly want to do, there's a joy mixed with this unbounded freedom. And there's no fear, just a great happiness in the doing.


Learn transcendental meditation as taught by Mahareshi Maheshyogi and meditate regularly.



Muneeb Ali:

I ask myself the question, "when I'm old, how much would I be willing to pay to travel back in time and relive the moment I'm experiencing right now?"



Rick Rubin:

I would ignore almost anything you learn in school, and ignore all accepted standards. Free yourself to try anything. The best ideas are revolutionary. If you're searching for wisdom, try to find it from people who've done it rather than people who teach it. Ask a lot of questions.



Ben Silberman:

One thing that always struck me was that it takes a minimum of 12 years of schooling to become a doctor, and then you're a low level doctor. A lot of jobs assume that you'll need 8-10 years to achieve the minimum level of competence to start to practice. That's been a good grounding force for projects, because a lot of things go wrong when doing projects because a lot of thing go wrong here and there. If you just assume that anything worthwhile is going to take 5 to 10 years, then the failures don't seem so severe.


Recommends the book, The Better Angels of Our Nature, by Steven Pinker


Figuring out a system so the stuff you need to do all the time happens, even while you might be placing disproportionate focus on one thing, is pretty important. Otherwise you'll be setting yourself up to be lonely and unhealthy.



Zooko Wilcox:

In order to communicate with people, you have to meet them where they live.



Peter Attia:

If you set a goal, it should meet these two conditions:

  1. It matters.

  2. You can influence the outcome.



Jocko Willink:

You want more free time? Follow a more disciplined time management system. You want more financial freedom? Implement long term financial discipline in your life. You want to be physically free to move how you want and be free from health issues caused by poor lifestyle choices? Then you have to have the discipline to eat healthy food and consistently work out. We all want freedom. Discipline is the only way to get it. Discipline equals freedom.


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