219: Eric Barker – Everything You Know About Success Is (Mostly) Wrong

Eric Barker is a thought leader in the field of success. His humorous, practical blog, “Barking Up the Wrong Tree”, presents science-based answers and expert insight on how to be awesome at life. Over 300,000 people subscribe to his weekly newsletter and his content is syndicated by Time Magazine, The Week, and Business Insider. He has been featured in the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, The Atlantic Monthly, and the Financial Times. Eric is also a sought-after speaker and interview subject, and has been invited to speak at MIT, Yale, West Point, the University of Pennsylvania, NPR affiliates, and on morning television.

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Show Notes:

  • Sustained Excellence:
    • Consistent habits and routines
    • Experiment
    • Evolve
    • Learn/Grow
    • Create a feedback loop
  • Steve Martin — “Being great isn’t hard. Being consistent is.” — (Note: Watch the Steve Martin MasterClass) — Meta principal for how people do things
    • “Hit the ball every time. It’s hard.”
  • Eric started the blog in 2009 — He read abstracts, academic research
    • He wanted to focus on things that were applicable to being awesome at life
  • “The future is already here, it’s just not evenly distributed.”
  • How he went from unemployed –> MBA in 2009 –> Screenwriter in Hollywood for Disney, Fox –> Successful blog/book
  • Advice to people who have a side hustle: “It’s a hard road. Give 1 hour per day to it. If you really want to do it, there will be trade offs. You have to measure how you will spend your time and what’s important to you.”
  • Book writing vs Blog writing — Book = 5 days per week working on. Blog = 2 days per week.
  • How can we find work life balance? — “It did not previously exist for me.”
    • How to say NO like Warren Buffett
  • Networking — Who you know is very important… However there is a tradeoff and extroverts waste time “at the water cooler”
  • Nice guys, Givers… There is a tight rope between confidence and delusion
    • There is a problem: “Nobody likes narcissism and hubris, but some confident people have those qualities.”
  • When is it a good idea to quit?
    • “It’s unrealistic to never quit. We quit things all the time. Show GRIT on the things that are important to you.”
  • Make little bets — Read Little Bets by Peter Sims
  • Learning Leader = Humility

“People love having choices… But people hate making choices.”

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More Learning:

Episode 078: Kat Cole – From Hooters Waitress To President of Cinnabon

Episode 216: Jim Collins — How To Go From Good To Great

Episode 179: How To Sustain Excellence – The Best Answers From 178 Questions

Episode 107: Simon Sinek – Leadership: It Starts With Why

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