Have you been stuck in a rut for awhile? Have you been there so long that you feel like there’s no use in trying to get out of that slump? Maybe you even start telling yourself, “Things can never get better. This is just the way things are. Is there even a point to all of this?” And as you ruminate over these questions over and over, you feel more and more depressed and maybe even start to feel a bit resentful. Resentful towards others, resentful towards life itself.
Well, my guest today says that perhaps the way you start to get out of that rut is to clean your room, bucko. His name is Jordan B. Peterson, and I’ve had him on the show before. Peterson is a psychoanalyst and lecturer, and he’s got a new book out called 12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos. Today on the show, Dr. Peterson and I discuss why men have been disengaging from work and family and why his YouTube lectures resonate with so many modern men. We then unpack why it’s so easy to get resentful about life, before spending the rest of the conversation discussing rules that can help you navigate away from resentment and towards a life of meaning. Dr. Peterson explains why he thinks a meaningful life isn’t possible without religion or myths, what lobsters can teach us about assertiveness, and why a simple act like cleaning your room can be the stepping stone towards a better life.
- Why Jordan thinks men, in particular, are so drawn to his message
- The harm in withdrawing from society
- Why life is actually pretty hard
- How living virtuously and honestly pushes back against life’s natural hardships
- Can a meaningful life be had without religion and/or myths?
- How to discover your values, and why they can’t be forced
- How Jordan’s 12 rules set the groundwork for finding meaning in life
- What can a large sea bug teach us about life?
- Why your physical posture can change your emotional and spiritual posture to the world
- How to break a vicious cycle of status defeats
- Why you should clean your room and how vastly important it is
- How do you know if the story you’re telling yourself is the truth? Can you know for sure?
- Why you should, within reason, assume the fault if you’re unhappy
- Why sacrifice is the greatest human invention ever
- How to learn the skill of sacrifice
- What do you do when your sacrifice doesn’t get you what you want?
- What you can do to get ahead of life’s natural tendency towards chaos and entropy
Resources/People/Articles Mentioned in Podcast
- My first show with Jordan about “maps of meaning”
- Podcast: Is There Anything Good About Men?
- Why Are So Many Men Missing From the Workforce?
- Life Is Hard; Get Drunk on This
- Life in a Secular Age
- A Primer on Nietzsche’s Big Ideas
- How to Develop a Mighty Moral Code
- AoM series on Social Status
- Self-Authoring: Plan a Better Life
- A Place for Everything and Everything In Its Place
- Groundhog Day
- What Do You Want to Want?
- The Cocktail Party by T. S. Eliot
- Matthew 7:3 in the Christian New Testament
- The Law of Sacrifice
- Make Your Bed, Change the World
Connect With Jordan
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The Strenuous Life. The Strenuous Life is a platform for those who wish to revolt against our age of ease, comfort, and existential weightlessness. It is a base of operations for those who are dissatisfied with the status quo and want to connect with the real world through the acquisition of skills that increase their sense of autonomy and mastery. Sign up for email updates, and be the first to know when the next enrollment opens up in March.
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