Tim Ferriss and Freakonomics

Headphones - Tim Ferriss and Freakonomics

As mentioned previously, I am big fan of thinking differently…at least a little and how I find podcasts to be a great way of doing this. Two of my favourite podcasts are The Tim Ferriss Podcast and Freakonomics. Tim Ferriss and Freakonomics have not only created my favourite two podcasts, they have also written my two favourite books.

Tim Ferriss and Freakonomics - The 4-Hour Work Week - Tim FerrissTim Ferriss and Freakonomics - Think like a Freak - Freakonomics

Tim Ferriss and Freakonomics remixed

So what could be better than mixing them together? Well that’s what has happened a few times. “How to Be Tim Ferriss” is a Freakonomics episode with Stephen Dubner,  one half of the Freakonomics duo, interviewing Tim Ferriss as part of their Self-Improvement Month. Stephen talks about how he knows Tim as the “4-hour-blank” guy which is based on the books Tim has written, The 4-Hour Work Week, The 4-Hour Body and The 4-Hour Chef. They talk about Tim’s background in Tech Investing and how the title “The 4-Hour Work Week” was chosen. They also discuss lucid dreaming for those interested in this for themselves.

Stephen Dubner has been on The Tim Ferriss Podcast twice, the first time was one of the very early episodes, episode 7.  This is just after the release of Think Like a Freak. It is interesting as the feel of the show has changed a lot from these early episodes.  They again cover some very interesting topics such as Religion and how Stephen ended up choosing his own.  Also Stephen’s feeling on collaboration, mentoring and children/family.

The second appearance by Stephen on The Tim Ferriss Podcast was more recent at the end of 2016.  I think this is much lighter interview than than the first covering topics like “Why cats wiggle their butts before they pounce” and “If he thinks he could take Malcolm Gladwell in a fist fight”. Slight aside, Malcolm Gladwell is the writer of another of my favourite books, Outliers. You might have heard of the book. It discusses the 10,000 hours of deliberate practice required to become world-class at something. Anyway, the podcast does cover some more serious topics as well such as “How to grow a podcast” and “How virtual reality might affect education”.

They are all really enjoyable episodes even though they feel a bit weird. As you are used to either Tim or Stephen asking the questions not being asked them. Have a listen and see what you think.

Books You Have to Read - Outliers - Malcolm Gladwell

Podcasts and Thinking Differently…

As mentioned in my previous post, Podcasts are a great way to access free content from some of the world’s experts in various fields.


My favourite app for listening to Podcasts is Pocket Casts (Android / iPhone), it does cost a small amount of money but I have found it gives me the best user experience and it has a great Discover section so I can see what other Podcasts are available that I might enjoy.

Podcasts and “Think Differently…at least a little”

I find that Podcasts help me follow a personal motto that I have which is “Think Differently…at least a little” which means don’t throw away all the knowledge and experience that you have when approaching difficult problems or facing new opportunities but always try and think a bit differently than most people would. Or more simply try and nudge yourself away from thinking the same as everyone else.

As discussed previously, the Tim Ferriss podcast is one of these but another one of these is the Freakonomics podcast.


Two people, Steven Levitt and Stephen Dubner, are behind the books that lead to the Podcast. Their first book, Freakonomics, started it off where they use Economics in a different way than most people would expect. They use it to look at crack dealers, cheating teachers and bizarre baby names. They then published SuperFreakonomics which was pretty much a direct sequel using Economics to find the hidden side of everything.

Podcasts - Freakonomics

The most recent book, Think Like a Freak, is the one that I have found the most useful in my quest to “Think Differently…at least a little”. As it is more of a ‘how-to’ guide of how to think differently and challenge conventional wisdom. One of the main points I took from the book was to “Think like a child” and how this allows you to come up with better ideas and questions.

Podcasts - Think Like a Freak

Again you don’t need to spend money and buy the books straight away, have a listen to the free podcasts see if you like what you hear and go from there.


Mentors for Introverts and Others

From yesterday’s post, how many of you thought of 5 successful people you could speak to? I am guessing a few of you. How many actually spoke to someone or would actually think about speaking to possible mentors? My guess, it would be even fewer. So what should you do?

Well luckily there are a variety of people that have done this work for you, the main person I wanted to mention is Tim Ferriss. 

He has written a variety of books, such as The 4-Hour Work Week and his most recent is Tools of Titans which is sub-titled The Tactics, Routines and Habits of Billionaires, Icons and World-Class Performers. But what has this got to do with Mentors?

Mentors - The 4-Hour Work Week: Escape the 9-5, Live Anywhere and Join the New Rich

Well while you don’t get the two-way conversation and tailored advice that you would from a real mentor. You do get to hear the tactics from the best in the world in their fields and for people who can’t or don’t want to speak to real people, they can get great advice that they could not otherwise access.


What is even better is that you can get this advice without even paying a penny by listening to his free podcasts. He has spoken to an amazing amount of people and deconstructed them to get their tactics, tools and routines that you can integrate into your own life, all from a variety of different fields such as Tech, Athletics, Business and many others.


As mentioned in a previous post, meditation is one of the routines that he pulls out from a large percentage of the people he speaks to, have a look back at this post to see how I recommend starting off.