SPEAKERS

Greg McKeown, Benjamin Hardy


Greg McKeown     

How are you?

Benjamin Hardy     

Yeah, I’m doing pretty dang good. You know, I have six kids, which maybe you knew maybe you didn’t be I have six kids, we adopted three, we have two. We’ve got three kids we adopted then we’ve got three younger kids, we got a two-month-old.

Greg McKeown    

So you adopted three at first?

Benjamin Hardy 

We adopted three when I was doing my PhD, I did a PhD at Clemson in organizational psychology. And then, yeah, we adopted three from the foster system. And then, literally a month after the adoption, my wife got pregnant with twins. So we actually, in 2018, had, we’ve adopted three and we had twins who went from zero to five that year. Then we did what knows now it’s 2018.

Greg McKeown   

2018 was the year.

Benjamin Hardy 

Yeah, that was my first sheet, my first major book came out that year called well called Willpower Doesn’t Work. So that was a, that was an interesting year. That was a I took a lot.

Greg McKeown  

What was it like for you?

Benjamin Hardy 

Adopting the three and having the twins in the same year?

Greg McKeown     

And the book in the middle. Just that whole thing when the book came out, and a bonus word was the first word description?

Benjamin Hardy 

I’d say shock.

Greg McKeown     

Yeah. That feels like an honest word.

Benjamin Hardy 

Yeah, shock. I would say the launch was actually harder than anything launching the book was more difficult than in the other two.

Greg McKeown    

Why?

Benjamin Hardy 

I guess, with a book launch, things can feel either successful or like a failure. Whereas with kids, it doesn’t have to feel that way as quickly. I had framed it as a failure for a while because I had such high expectations. Whereas with the adoption, and then, you know, ultimately, the girls coming the twins, you know, I don’t really frame family in terms of failure or success, at least at the moment. And so it didn’t have the negative energy associated with it.

Greg McKeown     

Total transformation of life. But this was all mean pretty much upside. But it’s interesting the story of the book. I wouldn’t have guessed that for you. The willpower is not enough was disappointing always framed that way but I can completely relate to that feeling. Because you know, it’s all about expectation.

Benjamin Hardy 

Well, yes, I expected things to succeed a lot easier than they did. Whereas launching a book wasn’t quite as easy as you know, all of the momentum that was going on the blog side.

Greg McKeown   

Because sometimes in expectation we success becomes invisible. And, I mean, the fact is, you wrote a book and published a book, a lot of people haven’t done that. You have a successful book, a lot of people haven’t done that. So it’s a, it’s an interesting tension between when you hope and aspire for something, you know 10 x, and you get 2x, to be able to really embrace the 2x. And that doesn’t mean that you let go of your tenants ambition over time, you know, for later that can be a journey to something. But that you that you don’t diminish 2x achievement to zero because it’s not 10x yet.

Benjamin Hardy 

Yeah, that’s what Dan Sullivan calls the gap in the game, which is a book that he and I are actually writing right now that’s going to come out in October. But what Dan says what the gap in the game is, you know, whatever you accomplish, whatever it may be, the problem that most people have is, is what they’re measuring themselves against, you know, so let’s just say you get it, you, you go 2x, but you’re measuring yourself against 10 x, right? That’s an ideal that doesn’t actually exist, you know, you and we the problem that people have when it comes to their happiness, at least from Dan’s perspective, but I tend to believe in and I really like it is, it’s, it’s a problem of measurement, you’re either measuring yourself against an ideal that doesn’t exist, or you’re measuring yourself against someone else, you know, so I could be measuring myself against some other author, I could be measuring myself against, you know, if you’re measuring yourself against someone else, or some ideal that doesn’t exist, exists, you can’t be happy, you’ll always be in the gap. But if you’re measuring yourself against where you were before, you know, if you did actually go to x, and then you measure yourself against where you were before, you can see enormous growth gains. And then obviously, if you’re just focusing on that, then you’re going to be happy, because you’re going to see progress. And then from your new launch point, you should actually from my point, one of the, you know, a lot of people say goals are bad, I think that that’s kind of crazy. The problem is, is what how people measure themselves. That’s why they’re unhappy.

Greg McKeown     

And I want you to give us more about that. I love the whole concept of the gap versus the game, it seems to me that the gap produces a lot of unhappiness. Yeah. And gain certainly produces more happiness. That makes sense, broadly speaking, but I’m curious about how do you set goals, then? When goals are in, you know, at first glance that inherently about creating gap.  

Benjamin Hardy 

Yeah, well, just as a general concept, it’s if you’re in the gap, you’re measuring yourself against something that isn’t really there, you could be measuring someone else, you know, for example, I have three kids we adopted, if I’m in the gap with my son, as an example, as all I’m seeing is where he’s not showing up. Well, you know, which there’s many different places with a kid. But if I’m actually appreciating him versus where he was six months ago, or a year ago, and recognizing the growth, then I’m going to be seeing him more accurately, if I’m only in the gap with him, then I’m not even appreciating the growth he actually has experienced is all I’m seeing is what he’s not, and I’m comparing him against something that doesn’t actually exist, I’m comparing him against some ideal in my own mind. And that’s pretty unfair to him, you know, and I think we do that to people, we do that I do it to my wife, I do it to myself all the time. So if you’re in the gap with yourself, you’re probably in the gap with everything in your life, which can be depressing. There’s a good quote from Ernest Hemingway. He said, nobility is not about being superior to other people, it’s about being superior to your former self. And so I think if you’re appreciating the gains, comparing against former self and the growth, then you’re actually seeing something real.

Greg McKeown     

I love that it’s a really important mindset shift. And one way that it was once expressed to me was, was this idea like, don’t waste one minute, comparing yourself to other people, instead, compare yourself to you know, you yesterday, It’s not other people. It’s where was I yesterday? How can I be better? How can I be better from that place? Does that sound right, by the way?

Benjamin Hardy 

Yeah, I think so. I mean, I have massive goals. And even Dan would say that you need to have goals, I actually believe that you can’t not have goals. I think that all human beings are actually driven by whatever they’re trying to accomplish, or whatever they’re seeking. But when it comes to measuring yourself, you know, you could conceivably accomplish all sorts of goals and still be unhappy. This is not about how to be more successful. This is about how to be more happy. You know, there’s people who It doesn’t matter what they accomplish. They feel worse and worse about themselves because they’re continuing to compare themselves with others. Ideal that doesn’t exist. And so you need goals because those pull you forward and they give you something to accomplish, but when you actually measure yourself, you actually measure it in the form of looking at where you are right now.

So you know, just your, your example was perfect, you have a 10 x goal. And over six months, you actually only go 2X, you didn’t quite get there, if you’re in the gap, you’re just looking at, okay, I failed, you know, you’re framing it as a loss. And so everything that occurred in that 2X growth is actually negatively looked upon, you know, you can’t even appreciate your own past because it actually is framed as a loss and a failure. It’s more a matter of if you’re comparing yourself in this way with your former self, you can actually be happy. And that’s something that I don’t think very many people are taught how to measure themselves accurately. One other interesting aspect, and there’s just a lot of research on this is that confidence actually comes from appreciating former gains, you know, looking back on what you did, and then using that as a springboard for new and bigger goals. And so, in my opinion, not only does it enhance happiness, but it would actually enhance confidence.

There’s a lot of research in psychology that asks, Does confidence create success? Or does success create confidence, and at least where the psych world is, is it’s probably the ladder, it’s looking back on what you’ve done, that gives you the confidence that you can do something you’ve never done.

Greg McKeown     

I could so improve in this area. I keep a gratitude journal daily. I do most weeks, I’ll do a wrap up the week. And most quarters in my personal quarterly off site, I will review and be grateful for the big gains through the quarter. And what I just described those three things I love doing, it feels really satisfying. To me. It’s one of the most soothing things that, you know, activities. I would say my life. So I recognize what you’re describing from those practices. But I still think there’s more

Benjamin Hardy 

Hope think about someone who’s struggling, it doesn’t have to be like people like you and me who are insanely working towards big goals. Think about someone who’s just trying to move their life forward. Like if they don’t see any progress, how can they have any hope for their future and without hope you’ve got literally nothing and there’s a lot of backing on that

Greg McKeown     

I just think that’s I mean fascinating. I got two things to say about that. The first is that it when you distinguished me to you from other people. I do understand what you’re saying but I just feel like the person who then went on to describe I mean, I feel you know, I feel myself perpetually like a struggler, you know, that trying to work out the next thing to do. And so I think there’s

Benjamin Hardy 

I feel that way as well by the way keep going though keep going.

Greg McKeown    

So that’s why that’s so interesting. I mean, I don’t, I do think that this is true, almost regardless, I’m sure it’s true, regardless of where you are. I don’t know. It, just the principle is true. Whatever you’ve achieved. And, and so I also love the idea that hope, which we typically think of as a future oriented thing, man and his hope for the future hope that something will happen, hope for good things to come. That that, actually the key to it, is to remember how far you’ve come to remember the journey you’ve been on what you who you are now that you weren’t before, I love the idea that remembering and that perspective. And I think that gratitude too, because I think that is part of what we’re talking about. Without that word, is actually the key for unlocking a more hopeful future.

Benjamin Hardy 

I think that’s exactly right. I think any small progress, if accurately measured, should give you more hope and confidence, which would equal a bigger future. There’s a lot of really, really cool hope research. One on one aspect of it, like the psychologists would say, hope is two things, it’s really three, but they would say it’s the will and the way. So basically, it’s you see a bigger future. And then you also see a way to get there, they call that pathways thinking but like if you’ve seen that you’ve done something small, you might not have that path right now. But you can actually go find that path. And so I think that’s a big part of it is if you know, I might not know how to get to my goal, whatever that may be. But because I’ve watched myself get through things I didn’t know how to do before I know that there is a way to get there. And so I believe I can go find it, or get the help I need.

Greg McKeown     

If you had had a gain versus gap mentality, the year that willpower is not enough, had come out, would it have changed the experience for you?

Benjamin Hardy 

Absolutely. Yeah, cause I was measuring the result, either against my expectation or against other people who I was comparing myself to as a writer versus acknowledging how much I had just done. You know, I had just launched the book. And it actually, you know, yeah, it wasn’t, it wasn’t as high as I planned or hoped or thought but it, I learned an insane amount from the experience. And I was in reality further along than I was before the book came out. And so even though it was not where I wanted it to be, the truth is, you know, if my goal was 10 X, I might have been at two X, I was still at two X. But because I wasn’t where I wanted to be, I was not even appreciating that I had moved forward.

Greg McKeown     

One of my favorite little insights that came to me while I was writing, , my new book is called effortless. And one of my, my favorite learnings was this idea that if you focus on what you lack, you lose what you have.

Benjamin Hardy 

Exactly. That’s it.

Greg McKeown    

And, and if you focus on what you have, you gain what you lack.

Benjamin Hardy 

That’s exactly right.

Greg McKeown   

And it’s such a, it’s such a positive, optimistic thing. To just realize that in any instant, you know, literally in any two and a half second moment I came across a great researcher has writing book about the time of now like psychologists and neuroscientists have measured now. We normally think of it as just sort of esoteric and it’s philosophical and whatever. But actually now is between two and three seconds. So two and a half seconds, that is the actual increment of our whole existence, that everything else is either thinking of, you know, just a map, our brain is thinking about something that hasn’t happened yet or has already happened. So it’s no longer there, it’s two and a half seconds, this tiny thing. And it’s very empowering, to realize that whatever the mood or mode or experience before this moment is, two and a half seconds, just say something you’re thankful for. But what a difference it makes to your own mental health, your own emotional state, you go from sort of a complaining state, into this into this positive, almost effortless state, where just things suddenly look better. And this conversation you and I have is I think helping to establish why that state suddenly feels so much better, you remember something good. But as soon as you’re expressing it, it’s the past because by the time you’re expressing it, it has to be the past. So you remember something from the past, you remember progress, suddenly, your increased confidence, suddenly birth into existence about the next moment?

Benjamin Hardy 

I love it. I couldn’t agree more. Yeah, I think what a concept I like is, from a psychology standpoint, it’s difficult to separate the past, present and the future. You know, you actually, when you’re remembering the past, you’re doing it in the present, when you’re imagining the future, you’re doing it in the present, you know, so from a psychology standpoint, all three of them exist at once. I think St. Augustine said there are no, there are no there is no past, present and future. There’s only a present past, a present present, and a future present. And so, but the reason that’s so interesting is I think to have a positive present, you need a good past. And that’s all just narrative. It’s all your choice, how you frame it, you know, and you need an exciting and a compelling future. If you’ve got a compelling, exciting future. And if you’ve got a positive past, the present becomes a lot easier to manage. I do like the whole two second concept have never heard anything about that.   

Greg McKeown     

Now, while I still have you, you did another book with Dan Sullivan?

Benjamin Hardy 

Yeah we’re doing one every year for a profit for the foreseeable future.

Greg McKeown 

One of the books that you’ve already done with Dan Sullivan, is Who Not How. And I just love that concept because it’s such a clear shift. If I’m understanding it, right, that you need to focus not so often on well, how on earth do I do it? But who do I need to find who can do it who can guide me who can mentor me or who can actually be outsourced to because they have the capability and expertise that I don’t have? Can you tell me more about, about that book about that concept and why it matters so much?

Benjamin Hardy 

Yeah absolutely. I think you know, we’ve talking about the gap in the game, the gap in the game is the idea that people were not correctly taught how to measure themselves. Which leads them to being unhappy. They’re measuring themselves against income, something out there or something that’s, you know, they’re measuring themselves in someone else. Who not how is the idea. And one of the reasons I like working with Dan is because he’s so clever, you know, he’s been coaching entrepreneurs for like, 45 years. And so he’s just got these pearls, you know, I think the longer you learn something, the more simplified it becomes. And so he’s just got these simplifications that are radical, as far as who not how people were incorrectly taught how to approach their goals. So once you decide you want to do something, you usually try to figure out how it’s done. You know, it makes complete intuitive sense. The first step is okay, that’s what I want, how do I get it? And that mindset is very emphasized, as one example in. In traditional education, you know, in traditional education, everyone is compared on the same test, you know, no one is allowed to collaborate on the test, that would be cheating, you know, so you’re not taught how to actually ask who, instead you’re, you’re, you’re required to do how which leads to competition over collaboration. And so in the world of business, and in the world of accomplishing lots of things, even just in the world of getting results, it’s always about who, you know, even in sports, Michael Jordan, just being one example, he wasn’t able to win any championships until Scottie Pippen came along. And until, you know, Phil Jackson became this coach. And it was his detriment when he was so focused on how over who, and so the book is really just an invitation that as soon as you have any goal you’re trying to accomplish, rather than asking, How do I do this, you ask either who can do this for me, or who can help me get this result, it’s really a book about results over process, you know, it’s who can help you get the result as immediately as possible, or who can just execute the task for you. There’s a lot of leadership principles in this, you know, the leader defines the vision, but they don’t necessarily need to execute the vision. And they certainly don’t need to tell the people who are executing the vision, how to do it, you let the who do that, how, and you just, you just find the who I mean, there’s so many, so many key concepts in this. It’s a courage game, you know, in anywhere that you shouldn’t be doing it. If you get a who, and then you trust those whose to do what they’re doing, you’re going to get enormously bigger results.

Greg McKeown  

So let’s say somebody knows what they want to achieve there in that position that you’re describing, they have spent their time typically working on the house trying to solve the house themselves, and so on. And they say, Oh, I more who in my life. How do they?

Benjamin Hardy 

How do they find the Who?

Greg McKeown     

How do they find who you’re the Who? To help me find the how to get to the how. This is getting ridiculous, but that still made sense, it made sense to me.

Benjamin Hardy 

Well, it’s important to realize that who not how actually is a how it’s a strategy, you know? So finding a who, although that is a strategy is the fastest way to get where you want to go. So there’s a lot of ways to do it. I actually, you know, there’s different types of who’s you know, as far as if I’m hiring someone, you know, it’s super important initially. So Dan has a concept he calls the impact filter. It’s just a one sheet tool, but really, the purpose of it is to clarify the what and the why, you know, clarify what was what needs to be accomplished in his specific terms as possible. And why is this so important? What’s at what’s at stake if we succeed and what’s at stake if we fail, and then you need to just drill down what specifically does success look like? The reason this is so important is because if success is not clearly defined, Then you won’t find the right who, if success is clearly defined, then it’s so much easier to find the who because the, you know, the who knows how to do the how they know how to get there, or at least they’re willing to. So you need to get very, very clear on the vision first. And in terms of hiring that’s, that’s the first step that that’s my how I just clarify what is this role? What Why is it so important? What success in this role, and I actually just let my assistant go find who’s in the case of like my team. And I don’t tell her how to do it. I didn’t train her how to do it, because she’s the who for that. So I’m not gonna micro manage her

Greg McKeown     

You’re telling me you don’t know what she does next.

Benjamin Hardy 

I don’t want to know that would be like Dan, knowing how I wrote the book. Yeah, I want to know that you have the hit mechanic fixes my car.

Greg McKeown     

But I want to know, because I want to be able to do it.

Benjamin Hardy 

Maybe you shouldn’t be the one to do it. Maybe you should get a who to do it. It depends on what you’re trying to do.  

Greg McKeown     

This is all so circular. At some point, I need to be able to find the right

Benjamin Hardy 

Person?

Greg McKeown     

Somewhat someone needed to finish that sentence, because it clearly I wasn’t about to do it. Yes, I mean, you’re saying that you know that there’s always first who is even if you want to find other, the other who’s I mean, what’s the way to find the finders. You’re saying you’ve outsourced finding new people for your team to your assistant.

Benjamin Hardy 

One thing I can say is I’ve had multiple assistants all with radically different personalities do it. And they all do it differently. But they all do it. Well. You know, as long as there as long as they’re very clear on the what and the why. You know what this role is why, you know, they, they go out and find people for my roles. Now let’s, let’s give a specific, let’s give a specific goal. I’m starting a YouTube channel, I would like a million YouTube subscribers in a year. Now, this is a very specific goal. Now, the real goal for you, I’m assuming it is it actually is. But I’m just giving a goal. You know, it could be that you want to get a book published, it could be that you want to start a business, it could be that you wanna get married, you know, whatever your goal is, I’m just going to give mine now as an example. Okay, I am starting a YouTube channel, I would like a million YouTube subscribers in a year. Okay, I could ask myself, how do I do this? Or I could say, who can do this for me, or who is already there that I can collaborate in team with by asking how I’ve set myself up for a lot of trouble. Whereas if I asked who theirs are, I’ve already got who’s but the first place I guess you would start is who’s already where I want to be that I can immediately start learning from, or who will immediately start mentoring and helping me or who I can help and team with so they can pull me forward?

Greg McKeown  

I still, I still there’s a question, I still want to push you on?

Benjamin Hardy 

Go, I want to get it, get it get it!

Greg McKeown  

Which is how do you find great it’s not just enough to find someone who says they’re willing to do a thing. You got to find good people, great people. And, and so I, I completely subscribe to the idea that we need more who’s in our lives, we need to know what our unique and contribution can be what our highest contribution is and isn’t. I agree that, that if you can find great people who are operating at their highest point of contribution, at their highest point of contribution, then that’s optimal for them. But I still think there is a gap with finding the right people. And I’m curious about what specific strategies you have beyond which is good and nice if you have an assistant who’s capable of doing it. And that works for some people, but for a lot of people listening, they don’t have that option. So how do they find them?

Benjamin Hardy 

Yeah, I mean, when it came to me, a lot of it has to do with research and also asking around, you know, so for example, my assistant didn’t actually find my mentor as it relates to YouTube. A lot of that’s me studying the craft, you know, like, If I think you have to ask, you have to ask. And it could even be starting on social media, if you know, and that’s obviously not the best pool. But it can maybe point you to better pools. You know, there are hubs on the internet where people hang out, or at least where you can find people, you know, but even when I started blogging in 2015, my goal was to get a traditionally published book deal. I probably approach it differently than you. But I approached it very how back then, because I wasn’t who not how focused but when it came to actually the results it was through who’s so for example, I was I wanted to know how to get a book deal. So my so I first started reaching out to book agents, and then eventually authors who had booked deals or who talked about how to get book deals. In this case, it was like Jeff Goins, Ryan Holliday, Seth Godin, Michael Hyatt, these were the authors in that subject that we’re talking about how to succeed as a writer. And so I was just googling and searching and finding these teachers, but then eventually reaching out and asking them for help. Like, I wasn’t able to get my own agent, actually, back then in 2017, Ryan Holiday got me my agent, and my agent was the one that got me the book deal, I probably could have figured out how to get a book deal without an agent, but it was a lot easier to do it through a who

Greg McKeown     

So much so very, very much so. Okay, so you’re saying that first you research and you select, you find experts?  

Benjamin Hardy 

Yeah I mean, you have to be very clear on the goal first, though.

Greg McKeown  

Agreed, you get very clear about what you’re trying to achieve. Right? This is this is essential goal for me, this really matters, I don’t know how to do it, but I can, this is the goal, then you go try find the experts who are the people who have written about this research about it, or done it themselves, so you can see the results. I definitely think that there’s a lot of people who feel like, well, I don’t even know how to do this. So I’m stuck from the beginning. And there’s a few strategies to make that easier. And one of them certainly is going, learning the best of what others know. And so that’s a high leverage strategy. But also then finding people who are highly competent in a particular area is just so much better at their thing.

Benjamin Hardy 

Do you mind if we use you as an example, Greg?

Greg McKeown   

Yes, I don’t know where we’re going with it. But I’m game, always game.

Benjamin Hardy 

Whatever it is you’re trying to accomplish And I don’t know what your goals are. And I don’t think we actually need even need to go into specifics of your goals.

Greg McKeown     

We’re about to.

Benjamin Hardy

Okay we can.

Greg McKeown     

So, you know, we’ll, I’m launching Effortless, right, that’s a, that’s a new book, perfect. Or I’m launching the Academy at Essentialism.com for the first time, like a place for people to actually, you know, be able to, to, like write down a 21 day challenge that people can take, and it’s specific micro actions they can take to become more essentialist. Those are two major projects that I’m launching,

Benjamin Hardy

Which one which, if you don’t mind, I mean, let’s just literally I just want to I, my guess is that it’s so much who not how is a lot easier than at least in the moment, we’re making it feel my guess is, you know, very quickly how to find the right who’s in both of these goals to help you. You might not know who these who’s are, you might not even be aware of them. But you know, quickly, I believe how to find the right people to help you with these goals I believe.

Greg McKeown     

Okay, that’s let’s, let’s, let’s do the Academy.

Benjamin Hardy

Okay, so The Academy is an online course, there’s just like legit, like a school you’re opening?

Greg McKeown  

Now that positioning makes it sound like if it’s anything less than an actual, accredited, accredited institute, that it’s somehow not legit. But it’s an online learning platform.  

Benjamin Hardy

Beautiful, as explicit as you want to be, What’s your goal for the academy?

Greg McKeown   

It’s explicitly would be just scale.

Benjamin Hardy

I mean, I actually don’t have an intuitive. You know,

Greg McKeown     

I don’t have a number, but I want to know, too. But I mean, I would love to, let’s say, let’s say to have a million people as part of the community.

Benjamin Hardy

Okay. So assuming a who not how approach. Who would you need on your team initially, you need to know all the who’s because as you start scaling, you’re going to need different who’s but right now, what, let’s just start with what’s currently stopping you from being at a million people in the academy?

Greg McKeown     

The there’s two obstacles. One is completing. I mean, I’ve launched the very first thing, this 21-day challenge I mentioned, the but that’s not the Academy. That’s just the entry point, the California roll of the Academy, so to speak, it’s just the beginning. It’s a taste. We tried to do it as a high-quality thing. And I will absolutely say that progress towards this goal has already accelerated so much faster, because I found a great videographer. Because found a someone who can, can write, and they didn’t actually do the scripts for 21-day challenge, but they have helped with a lot of the other writing involved and previously in a writing fell to me. And so, and so it’s been it’s just moved so much faster. Having a team of people, a great web developer who can have these mashups sessions where we just improve real time, what we’re doing and how we’re doing it. So we’re just learning all together. I mean, I almost would say it’s a success story for the idea of who not how right there, because having the team that’s in place is already accelerating it. So that that content is sort of the first obstacle and the second is just promotion, it’s just letting people know, I mean, I have the, you know, the important breakthrough moment that Essentialism has now been, you know, in advance a million people and counting. And that’s like a really important line, I never thought we would cross. If all of those people knew about the course, we would be a long way towards the achievement of goal.

Benjamin Hardy

I believe in you, Greg, as a person, I know, you’re insanely capable. But if you were trying to do most of the work scaling this course, to a million people, I would, I would struggle with at least how long it would take. It might take a long, a lot longer than you need to. But if you were to find the right people, whether that be people, you know, hire someone or team with someone who’s already scaled an online course to a million people, and already knows how to do that.

They would tell you, they would streamline your learning, obviously, enormously fast.

Greg McKeown     

Having I think, at some level, the humility to just go, Well, I would, I’m not going to become abrasive this, knowing what you you’re not likely to either have an interest in or to become skilled out or to gain, you know, that unique knowledge about is, I think, the a foundational element of what makes society possible. And so, to really opening our minds to who this is what you’re encouraging us to do, not how, who not how, see, I literally said that phrase as if it wasn’t the title of the book. But that summarizes, of course, exactly the argument you’re making. And any final specific strategies, thoughts on who not how?

Benjamin Hardy 

As a thought, my invitation for you, and for anyone listening to this is to look at any major breakthrough you’ve had in your life? And tell me it wasn’t, because there was a who involved? That who could have been maybe a book you read potentially, but, you know, chances are any major breakthrough that you’ve had, in terms of actual tangible results probably came through who. As far as strategy, I do, I would say, there are different dimensions of who’s obviously like, You’re, you’re a product of the five people you spend the most time with, that’s pretty big, as it relates to like the, you know, the people you surround yourself with. It’s insanely subtle. But even me, you know, I’ve got various friends, and I can just tell the subtleness, of how they’re rubbing off on me, either for good or for bad. And so I think that that’s insanely important. But one of the messages of the book is actually the crucial importance of being a who, for other people, you know, like, what is the crucial role that you play in various people’s lives, you know, I’m a, who, to my wife, you know, I’m her husband, I’m a who, to my kids, you know, there’s certain things that I can do for them that hopefully make their lives better, you know. So it’s not always about finding who’s in a lot of ways it’s about in what vision or in what goal Do you need to be a who to whether it be to support someone or to support some cause. But I think the key key aspect is, is an alignment of goal. You know, if there’s a clear alignment of goal, then then you can probably find the right who I’m very confident in who not how. It’s easier to revert to how which generally leads to procrastination. But when you make a commitment and find a who or bring who on first off, your commitment increases, because generally there’s a higher level of investment, even if you’re not actually paying the person, there’s two people now involved in the goal or more. But when it comes to team building, when you invest in a human, you do need to see it as an investment, not a cost. Even buying an online course you know, learning from Greg McKeown, that’s a great who but like, you don’t want to see that thing as a cost but as an investment in yourself, by me not answering my emails. I’m now able to write more or make more YouTube videos or something like that, you know, so like, by me not dealing with my schedule. I don’t have to lose my flow and my focus instead, like, you know, we’ve made the filter and the decisions can be made for me. By me not editing videos, I can make more, or I can learn more, I can read more books. And so you always want to see it as an investment in your own self, and also in your future self. But also, when you make that investment, then your commitment immediately increases in that goal, investment or commitment generally follows investment. It’s a leap of faith to put who’s into your life, but it increase it but it immediately increases your commitment and your capacity to achieve what you want to do.

Greg McKeown   

Yes, I think that there’s two parts to getting there. What mentally one is that you say, it cannot be done anymore. You know, I’m literally up to the limit, like there’s no more nonessentials to be stripped from life. There’s no more of me to give it. I mean, this is the pain point I think a lot of people come up against, although, frankly, you could come up to that pain point and still not shift to who you just still think the answer is more how much I’ve got to work harder, I’ve got to do more, and so on. So the pain doesn’t necessarily make the leap because it’s a mental leap that needs to be made, not more within the same paradigm. And I think the second shift is just to is just to recognize, yeah, how precious and valuable our lives are and how, how this whole strategy isn’t lazy and it doesn’t have to be for someone who’s in a in an entitled position is just recognizing that we need other people and that and that it’s okay to need other people and it’s okay to not know exactly what you want from them at first, but talking to other people and just allowing your strategy to change from let’s call it sort of the lone cowboy image of Americana. You know, I’ve got to do this myself. It’s all on me to a we’re all in this together. And I need lots and lots of people to help bring about this vision that I have. Benjamin Hardy, it has been a delightful conversation. For me time well spent. It’s great to have you as a who in my life now. And to be a who in yours. Thank you very much for being on the What’s Essential podcast.

Benjamin Hardy

Yeah, thanks for letting me be here, Greg. Appreciate it.


Essentialism Podcast

Greg McKeown

Wheelhouse Entertainment

Credits:

  • Hosted by Greg McKeown
  • Produced by Greg McKeown and Wheelhouse Entertainment
  • Executive Produced by Greg McKeown, Avi Gandhi, Brent Montgomery, Eric Wattenberg, and Ed Simpson
  • Edited by Emma Gladstone and Deanna Markoff