In this episode, former World Series of Poker champion and author, Annie Duke, explains how poker is a pertinent model system for decision making in the real world, a system which blends imperfect information with some unknown percentage of both luck and skill. We go through the decision-making matrix, and how we spend most of our energy focusing on just one of the four quadrants at the expense of the learning opportunities that come from the other 75% of situations. Annie also shares how this evaluation of only the bad outcomes (and our tendency to judge others more harshly than ourselves in the face of a non-status quo decision), leads individuals, leaders, and teams to avoid bad outcomes at all costs. This avoidance is at the cost of the types of decisions which lead to progress and innovation both personally, and societally, across many realms from poker to sports to business to medicine. We also dive deep into a framework for learning, and the levels of thought required to rise to the top of a given domain. Finally, we talk about something that resonated deeply with me in terms of how I think about extending healthspan, which is the concept of “backcasting”. We discuss: Annie’s background, favorite sports teams, and Peter’s affinity for Belichick [7:30]; Chess vs. poker: Which is a better metaphor for decision making in life (and medicine)? [12:30]; Thinking probabilistically: Why we aren’t wired that way, and how you can improve it for better decision making [18:15]; Variable reinforcement: The psychological draw of poker that keeps people playing [25:15]; The role of luck and skill in poker (and other sports), and the difference between looking at the short run vs. long run [38:00]; A brief explanation of Texas hold ‘em [47:00]; The added complexity of reading the behavior of others players in poker [53:15]; Why Annie likes to “quit fast”, and why poker is still popular despite the power of loss aversion [58:30]; Limit vs. no limit poker, and how the game has changed with growing popularity [1:01:00]; The advent of analytics to poker, and why Annie would get crushed against today’s professionals [1:10:30]; The decision matrix, and the ‘resulting’ heuristic: The simplifier we use to judge the quality of decisions —The Pete Carroll Superbowl play call example [1:16:30]; The personal and societal consequences of avoiding bad outcomes [1:27:00]; Poker as a model system for life [1:37:15]; How many leaders are making (and encouraging) status-quo decisions, and how Bill Belichick’s decision making changed after winning two Super Bowls [1:41:00]; What did we learn about decision making from the Y2K nothingburger? And how about the D-Day invasion? [1:46:30]; The first step to becoming a good decision maker [1:48:45]; The difference between elite poker players and the ones who make much slower progress [1:55:30]; Framework for learning a skill, the four levels of thought, and why we hate digging into our victories to see what happened [1:58:15]; The capacity for self-deception, and when it is MOST important to apply four-level thinking [2:06:15]; Soft landings: The challenge of high-level thinking where there is subtle feedback and wider skill gaps [2:16:45]; The benefits of ‘backcasting’ (and doing pre-mortems) [2:19:30]; Parting advice from Annie for those feeling overwhelmed (and two book recommendations) [2:28:30]; and More. Learn more at www.PeterAttiaMD.com Connect with Peter on Facebook | Twitter | Instagram.
In this episode, Rick Rubin, legendary music producer and co-founder of Def Jam Records and American Recordings, discusses his early foray into music production which started as a hobby as a teenager and ultimately turned into a Grammy award-winning career that produced revolutionary changes in the music industry. Rick has worked with the likes of the Beastie Boys, Red Hot Chili Peppers, and Johnny Cash, just to name a small fraction. Rick talks about the pain and suffering that sometimes drives music and the cycle of drug addiction and how he has been able to help artists through those struggles to make space for their creative genius. We also get into Rick’s own personal health journey including his battle with depression, his struggle with obesity, and ultimately his extraordinary transformation. Finally, Rick shares a really significant health scare which required emergency heart surgery, and how that experience has impacted him. We discuss: Early career, and the birth of hip hop [7:15]; Early success of Def Jam Recordings, and working with LL Cool J [13:15]; Revolutionary changes in music: LL Cool J, Beastie Boys, and Run DMC [19:30]; Partnership with Columbia Records, and leaving Def Jam [26:45]; The success of Licensed to Ill: how it took off, and how it changed things [36:00]; American Recordings: Rick’s transition to rock and roll [39:15]; Working with the Red Hot Chili Peppers, and the poetic nature of music [45:45]; Rick’s favorite music that he did NOT produce [53:00]; Prevalence of drug use and emotional pain in musicians: Rick’s experience with helping artists through their struggles [57:20]; NYC vs. LA hip hop [1:05:30]; Rick’s battle with depression [1:10:00]; Coping with the death of artists that Rick worked with [1:22:00]; Working with Johnny Cash [1:26:45]; Working with Rage Against the Machine [1:34:30]; The digital age of music: Have we lost something? [1:37:45]; Rick’s health journey and battle with obesity [1:42:45]; Radical weight loss: How Rick was finally able to shed the weight [2:00:15]; Total transformation: Exercise and training with Laird Hamilton [2:11:00]; Emergency surgery: Rick’s frightening heart condition [2:25:30]; Methylene blue and exogenous ketones: Are they neuroprotective? [2:46:15]; The most profound thing Rick learned about himself from his heart condition and major surgery? [2:52:30]; What life lessons does Rick wish to impart on his son? [2:57:30]; and More. Learn more at www.PeterAttiaMD.com Connect with Peter on Facebook | Twitter | Instagram.
Excited to kick off the podcast with special guest and close friend Tim Ferriss, lifehacker, podcaster extraordinaire, and author of multiple best-selling books that includes The 4-Hour Workweek, The 4-Hour Body, Tools of Titans, and Tribe of Mentors. In this podcast we cover mental health, depression, and our mutual interest in psychedelics as potential therapeutic agents. Tim talks both experientially and from his own deep dive into the literature of psychedelics and mental health. Tim is shifting his focus from investing in startups to funding experiments that he hopes will establish more reliable knowledge and therapeutic options for those suffering from anxiety, depression, and addiction. Tim also shared his list of acquired wisdom he returns to most reliably, which might be worth the price of admission alone. We discuss: Tim’s history of depression and his TED Talk on his close call with suicide [11:15]; The type of thinking that triggers Tim’s downward spirals [17:15]; Tim’s transformative experience with ayahuasca [48:45]; How Tim’s experience and research has led him to focus on furthering the science on psychedelics and mental health [53:00]; What some of the meditation modalities, and meditation apps, are out there, why meditation can be so hard to do, but also worthwhile to stick with [1:13:00]; Why Tim made a big commitment (more than $1 million) to funding scientific research, and to psilocybin and MDMA research, in particular [1:31:00]; From all the habits and tools that Tim has learned, the five things that he returns to most reliably [2:33:00]; And more. Learn more at www.PeterAttiaMD.com Connect with Peter on Facebook | Twitter | Instagram
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