Interviews w/ authors, entrepreneurs, athletes and others on resilience, getting on or getting over life’s set ups and setbacks.
If research exists on how people bounce back, he talks about it. If there are physical practices, proven psychologies or philosophies that can help people build personal foundations before the storms come, he digs into it.
EP. 55: AN EXPERIMENTAL LIFE: A.J. JACOBS, LESSONS FROM RADICAL LIFESTYLE CHANGES
My guest is AJ jacobs
A.J. Jacobs is an author, journalist, lecturer, and human guinea pig. His strategy as a writer is to dive into something he’s curious about and actually live it.
He has written ten books, four of which are New York Times bestsellers that combine memoir, science, humor, and a dash of self-help. His most recent book is The Puzzler: One Man's Quest to Solve the Most Baffling Puzzles Ever, from Crosswords to Jigsaws to the Meaning of Life.
AJ is also editor-at-large at Esquire magazine, a commentator on NPR, and a columnist for Mental Floss magazine. He has appeared on Oprah, The Today Show, Good Morning America, CNN, The Dr. Oz Show, Conan, and The Colbert Report. He has given several TED talks, including ones about living biblically, creating a one-world family, and living healthily. The viewership count of the two I saw was over 6M combined.
On the podcast, I probe into his life experiments so we cover…
How I came across his work in Esquire We cover some of his more notable experiments What he took away from reading the entire Encyclopedia Britannica in his quest to learn everything in the world. The hilarious problems with being radically honest What he learned from living the rules of the old testament for a year - in Manhattan He discusses which of his experiments was the most profound and life-changing We talk about why being grateful is hard and what he learned about gratitude from thanking over 1,000 people How we have the happiness equation backward, We talk about his latest book and the benefits of puzzles What mazes have to do with psychological flexibility I always strive for the meaningful on the show, but sometimes that can lean toward a bit of the somber - which is fine - but it is wonderful when you can get a guest like AJ who is breezy, funny, AND profound; hard to pull that off but he does it.
I instantly liked him - I think you will too. Enjoy!
EP.54: LIFE IS SHORT, TO-DO LISTS ARE LONG: OLIVER BURKEMAN ON TIME MANAGEMENT FOR MORTALS
This podcast is about your relationship to time.
My guest is Oliver Burkeman. Oliver is a journalist and author. He writes and publishes a twice-monthly email newsletter called "The Imperfectionist." You can find The Guardian column he wrote from 2006 to 2020 online. It's titled "This Column Will Change Your Life." He's also the author of The Antidote: Happiness for People Who Can't Stand Positive Thinking, and his most recent book is Four Thousand Weeks: Time Management for Mortals. It is also the topic of the podcast.
Four Thousand Weeks explores concepts of time and time management, arguing that our modern attempts to optimize our time leave us stressed and unhappy. The book's first sentence is: "The average human lifespan is absurdly, terrifyingly, insultingly short." (About 4,000 weeks, on average; thus the title.). It is not your classic time-management book and in it, he explores the most profound questions we have in life.
In the book and on this podcast, Oliver prompts us to question the very idea that time is something you use in the first place."
Some of our talking points.
On what he's learned about happiness What we should seek besides happiness Defining personal growth The importance of frustration tolerance How we relate to time The problems with time management Optimizing the wrong things To-do list and apps and the trap of planning The challenges of prioritizing Practical tips on project management And Oliver certainly helped me sort through my struggles with allocating my time, so I found the conversation very useful. I think you will, too.
For show notes and more, visit www.larryweeks.com
EP. 53: THE POWER OF FRIENDS: ROBIN DUNBAR ON OUR MOST IMPORTANT NUMBER
“Pain shared, my brother, is pain not doubled but halved.”― Neil Gaiman
My guest on this episode is Professor Robin Dunbar, the well-known anthropologist and evolutionary psychologist famous for his "Dunbar Number."
Robin is an Emeritus Professor of Evolutionary Psychology and head of the Social and Evolutionary Neuroscience Research Group in the Department of Experimental Psychology at the University of Oxford. He is also the author of 22 books including his most recent Friends — Understanding the Power of Our Most Important Relationships.
For the few of you who have never heard of Dunbar's number, it is the discovery that there exists a cognitive limit on human groups of about 150. Generally, we can only maintain stable social relationships within a limited number in which each individual knows who the other is and how that person relates to each other.
On the show, Robin breaks down that upper number into concentric circles of much smaller groups that make up our close friends and best friends, explaining how they got there - and how we can maintain and grow them.
We discuss these topics…
The importance of friends and the huge effect they have on our health A summary of his famous number - and its implications for friendships How friendships change across a lifespan How best friends are created How and why friendships end The pandemics impact on friendships, a bit about proximity The effect of the internet, Zoom, and Social Media Differences in friendship between the online and real-world The impact of individual differences in introversion and extraversion Friendships between men and women, the "When Harry Met Sally" question For show notes and more, visit www.larryweeks.com
EP. 52: THE GREAT RESIGNATION: ASHLEY STAHL ON CAREER DESIGN AND HOW TO GET UNSTUCK
"I would say what would be responsible when asking yourself should I stay or should I go is, am I actively growing a core skillset that I want to harness and carry with me throughout my career?" - Ashley Stahl
The great resignation is all over the media of late; it's an economic trend born of the COVID pandemic in which employees (In the U.S. for our purposes) are voluntarily leaving jobs in huge numbers—starting around the end of 2020, ramping in 2021 and increasing now in 2022. Although many service sectors are hardest hit, it does bleed beyond those impacting many different industries.
My guest is Ashley Stahl. Ashley is a former counter-terrorism professional turned career coach and bestselling author of "You Turn: Get Unstuck, Discover Your Direction, and Design Your Dream Career."
Ashley's helped clients in over 30 countries discover their career path and land more job offers. Her writings appear in a monthly career column in Forbes magazine, and her articles have been featured in The Wall Street Journal, Self, The Washington Post, The Chicago Tribune, and more.
When you listen, I think you can tell that Ashley is on a mission to help people step into a career they're aligned with and even excited about.
I wanted Ashley on because she is an expert in career transitions and disruptive workplace phenomena. I wanted her opinion on what is happening and, more importantly, what opportunities this opens up for people. She did not disappoint.
Topics we covered on the show
insights into what is happening at the moment across industries. Work and the burden of meaning, purpose and passion. Values first, roles second. Better questions to ask yourself. When to stay, when to leave. The importance of mindset. Assessments and determining work that is right for you. Hard skills and how networking works today. How to find unadvertised roles. For show notes and more, visit www.larryweeks.com
EP. 51: THINKING TRAPS: DR. STEVEN HAYES ON DEPRESSION AND PSYCHOLOGICAL FLEXIBILITY
“Acceptance is the full embrace of our personal experience…it’s choosing to feel with openness and curiosity, so that you can live the kind of life you want to live while inviting your feelings to come along for the ride” - Stephen Hayes
This podcast is about the power of dealing with negative thoughts and emotions more obliquely. It's about a central shift from focusing on what you think and feel to how you relate to what you think and feel. Its effectiveness is somewhat paradoxical because struggling to stop or change a thought or emotion can have the opposite effect - and compound the problem.
My guest is Dr. Steven Hayes. Dr. Hayes is a Nevada foundation professor of psychology in the behavior analysis program at the University of Nevada. He's an author of 46 books in nearly 675 scientific articles. His TEDx talks and blogs have been viewed or read by over 3 million people he has ranked among the most cited psychologists in the world. He's especially known for his work on acceptance and commitment therapy or ACT, which is one of the most widely used and researched new methods of psychological intervention over the last 20 years.
Steven has received the lifetime achievement award from the association for behavioral and cognitive therapy and his popular book, Get Out of Your Mind and Into Your Life: was #1 bestseller, and his new book, which is also discussed on the podcast. A Liberated Mind: How to Pivot Toward What Matters has been recently released to white acclaim.
Some of the topics we cover.
Current depression rates and the impact of the pandemic What he thinks is exasperating depression and anxiety in the U.S. The differences between sadness and depression How our brains and emotions can often work against us How automatic and complicated our thinking processes are ACT and process-based therapy, and the challenge of a purely cognitive model What is relational thinking The problem with treating negative thoughts as problems How we can relate to our thoughts to create space from being caught up in them What is diffusion and techniques to apply it For show notes and more, visit www.larryweeks.com
EP. 50: A SHORT HISTORY OF VACCINES; DR. PAUL OFFIT ON SKEPTICISM, RISK, AND COVID-19
On this episode we cover a bit of the biography of vaccines, dovetailing into the current state of vaccination around the globe.
My guest on this podcast is Dr. Paul Offit, a world renowned expert and medical pioneer in the field of immunology and virology. He is a professor in the division of Infectious Diseases at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia and a professor of Vaccinology at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine. He is the co-inventor of the rotavirus vaccine recommended for universal use in infants by the CDC, credited with saving hundreds of children's lives every day. Dr. Offit is also currently a member of the FDA’s Vaccine Advisory Committee and is a founding advisory board member of the Autism Science Foundation and the Foundation for Vaccine Research. His awards and citations are too numerous to list here (See more of his bio at www.chop.edu/doctors/offit-paul-a)
Paul is not only an expert of great renown, he is also very generous and extremely passionate about public health - and it comes through.
Vaccination is widely considered one of the greatest medical achievements of modern civilization. Please listen as Paul explains why that is so.
We covered a range of topics including:
The Ming dynasty, ‘variolation’ and smallpox Powdered pustules and other Chinese precursors 18th Century and the founding of vaccinology in the West Jonas Salk and the first successful polio vaccines Rotavirus and the RotaTeq vaccine Recombinant DNA flu vaccines The new mRNA era of vaccines Vaccine risks then and now; we do the math Vaccine controversy and hesitancy throughout history Overview of the current COVID-19 vaccines, Delta and what’s next Who should, and should not, get the vaccine FDA timelines, approvals, and licensure For show notes and more, visit www.larryweeks.com
Informative and Fresh Perspective
I’ve enjoyed listening to Larry’s show. He has a wide range of guests and I find a lot of value being a fly on the wall during these interviews.
It Should Be Illegal To Get This Good at Any 1-Thing!
With so many podcasts on the market today, it is so hard to break through the noise. I was recently turned on to Bounce! by a friend of mine, and after tuning into a couple of episodes, it has made it’s way into my weekly routine! I literally leave 1 un-listened episode in my queue simply because I hate the thought of running out of Larry content! Keep it up!!
Larry, host of the Bounce! Conversations podcast, highlights all aspects of resilience and more in this can’t miss podcast! The host and expert guests offer insightful advice and information that is helpful to anyone that listens!