I watched Tim Ferriss on The Rich Roll podcast today, and I'll be straightforward: this is what I needed to hear for a long time. Tim Ferriss, highly regarded in the world of productivity and self-development, finally talking about going inward is the most important message for me today.
Why the "Woo" club? I'll get to that but first, the backstory.
As an entrepreneur, I followed Tim Ferriss ever since I was thrown into the startup world, basically hustle culture in my late 20s. His content on productivity and self-development helped me through those days. I remember I would always quote what he said: develop different parts of yourself and don't identify yourself solely as a founder or your business, because this way when a part of your life isn't doing well, you don't go down along with it because other parts of your life are either pulling you up our reminding you that you are not your work. Tim does not see himself as a zen teacher but this is essentially one of my first lessons in zen before I met my teacher: that you are not your thoughts, you are not your mind, that you are simple the observer of your life. This idea served as an anchor for me for many years, because I did get attached to our brand, our company, our cause. My name and the name of our venture was almost always beside and equal to each other. When it did well, I felt good about myself. Obviously, and I didn't know it then, but this isn't the case. The company will not always be doing well and that doesn't mean you as a person sucks. Likewise, if you are personally struggling, it should not reach the point of compromising your company especially when it has established itself and numerous people now depend on it. So besides working on the startup, I also dove deep into yoga and started taking it seriously, not just going to classes when it's convenient, but seriously committed as a priority. In 30 days I was able to do a headstand, which was not the goal, but simply the result of what my internal journey. After 30 days, yoga became such an integral part of me that now 6 years later, I've grown with it as a teacher.
Going back to Tim Ferriss--in the podcast he had a witty remark about someone he followed "not part of the Woo club" and that made me laugh, because "woo-woo" is the term used for mystical, spiritual things and not in a positive way, saying woowoo has a cringe connotation. Why? Because modern man was taught that science and material evidence are superior... logic and hard facts are superior to emotions, it is superior to spiritual concepts that cannot always be explained clearly with hard material evidence that went through the scientific method validated by scientists and medical professionals. Anyone who follows spirituality must be looked at with caution as they may be in a cult (understandably because many have exploited spiritualism).
I laughed because I get it, I was the same. Since I was a child I was always fascinated by science, and learning how the world and people work, I self-studied physics, psychology, self-improvement, etc and I was also deep into scientific research. That still applies, but now I understand that science and spirituality, in their true essence are in fact inseparable. I won't dive into that now, but having someone like Tim Ferriss become a voice for both thriving in material life but also paying more attention to our inner world is a leap. It is validation that universal sentiment is shifting.
So here are some quotes from the episode:
For some people there will come a point where you realize that you have blind spots other people will make that very clear to you and you may also realize once you check some of the boxes once you have some of the success once you make some of the money whatever once you have the relationship you thought you needed that would make you happy once you have some of those things and you realize wait a [ __ ] minute my movie is still the same in my head or very similar I'm still waking up anxious I'm still having trouble going to bed I'm still feeling depressive symptoms whatever those things might be and there can be biochemical issues genetic issues and so on but if you think it might be related to your perception or reality and the stories that you tell yourself I think at that point you're more open to engaging with these things - Tim Ferriss
I wouldn't want to take a hope away from someone and not give them an equally powerful substitute I think that is risky so I would say if you're at the point where you're recognizing okay The Jig Is Up I think there's some inner game that I need to work on then I'd say great uh you know stair step your way in and begin to look at some of the tools that have been vetted and listen to people you trust but get professional opinions also right don't just rely on YouTube or podcasts or anything else like we really need some degree of professional interaction ideally