Rank #1: Martha Beck on Enlightenment and Messages our Bodies Send
"Suffering is a sign you are about to be woken up again." —Martha Beck This week we tackle a tiny little topic—enlightenment—with one of my all-time favorite authors and thinkers, Martha Beck. I have read all eight of Martha's books (two or three times each) as they helped me through some of my biggest transitions in life and work.
Rank #2: Cultivate a Courage Habit with Kate Swoboda
Kate Swoboda believes that "courage can absolutely be cultivated,” just as we improve other skills with habit-building principles in mind. The problem is that sometimes we apply the cue-routine-reward to our fears instead. We get triggered, fall into familiar patterns, then gloss over it with a reward that's a pale replacement for what our heart really wants. What's the alternative? Listen to this week's Pivot Podcast conversation to learn Kate's four-step process for avoiding common fear routine traps—perfectionist, saboteur, martyr, or pessimist—and building your courage muscles instead.
Rank #3: Plan Your 2017 Pivot
Listen on for more on how to plan your 2017 pivot, how to set soul goals and intentions for the new year, and how to honor routines and time for resting and recharging.
Rank #4: Set Your 2018 Pivot Strategy with Jenny Blake
To help you kick-off the new year in style and soul-aligned next steps, I’m back with my annual Set Your Pivot Strategy episode—new and improved with the best resources and reflection questions I’ve got. I encourage you to get out a pen and paper for this one—yes, analog-style—and pause frequently to journal for as long as you’d like on each prompt. Go big! Go for quantity, not quality, and don’t censor yourself or worry yet about whether or not what you’re envisioning is possible—the time for that will come later. When you think you’re done writing, keep going! That just means you’ve gotten your most obvious ideas down. Pushing through the pauses is where you create breakthroughs, and every time you sit with a question you’ve never heard before, you are creating new neural pathways in the brain.
Rank #5: Want Nothing, Have Everything: The Happiness Equation with Neil Pasricha
"Be you. Be you, and be cool with it. There is nobody else you can be better. There is so much of you unique to the world. You are unique and complicated. You are different and dimensional." —Neil Pasricha, The Happiness Equation: Want Nothing + Do Anything = Have Everything Neil Pasricha's writing is like a cup of hot chocolate, or as he would describe it in Awesome Thing #119, like watching butter melt on a hot piece of toast. It is comforting and delightful. His latest book is about what he learned along his own roller coaster ride of reaching smashing success with his 1,000 Awesome Things blog and books, then realizing he still wasn't happy. We break down topics like The Saturday Morning Test, the three time buckets, and many more.
Rank #6: Inside the Mindset, Systems and Strategies of charity: water's Chief Operating Officer Lauren Letta
In Pivot I ask what your sliding doors career/s might be: in a parallel universe, if time, money and judgement from others were not a factor, what other career paths could you see yourself taking? I often play this game with friends even while going about life in New York, calling out alternate reality careers when I see them. For example, in one scenario I’m a book-color-coding consultant for wealthy people's personal libraries, traveling up and down Manhattan and beautifying their bookshelves. Another title that always fascinated me: Chief Operations Officer. All those logistics and systems and processes, oh my! So I was thrilled to discover this week’s guest, Lauren Letta, who serves in that very role at charity:water. In this conversation we explore what it means to organize an entire rapidly-growing organization, why role labels are overrated, her best strategies for building scalable systems, and how to be open to pivoting within a company even before you can spot specific opportunities. This episode also coincides with World Water Day, a United Nations observance day to increase global knowledge about water related issues, that's coming up on Wednesday, March 22! World Water Day is a big moment each year for charity: water as the organization continues to raise awareness about the global water crisis.
Rank #7: Find Your Breakthrough Idea and Build a Following with Dorie Clark
"True thought leadership is a gift. It is a willingness to be brave, open up, and share yourself. It is a willingness to risk having your ideas shot down because you genuinely believe they can help others.” —Dorie Clark, Stand Out
Rank #8: Happy Launch Day!! Pivot for the Podcast: James Altucher Interviews Jenny
HAPPY LAUNCH WEEK!! One of my favorite authors, bloggers and good friends—James Altucher, author of Choose Yourself and the Choose Yourself Guide to Wealth —takes over the Pivot Podcast this week to interview yours truly. I couldn't imagine a better way to celebrate the book launch—be sure to grab your copy wherever books are sold!! I also took over James' show today—if you don't already subscribe to his podcasts, get on it! They're my favorites that I listen to: The James Altucher Show and Question of the Day (with Freakonomics co-author Stephen Dubner).
Rank #9: What Does Your Soul Know? Flow and Transparency with Penney Peirce
“To know yourself as a soul . . . you must dissolve everything in the way. The clutter composed of fear, fixed beliefs, and unconsciously ingrained habits." —Penney Peirce, Transparency: Seeing Through to Our Expanded Human Capacity What does it mean to make enlightenment normal? How do you remove the filters that dim your soul's wisdom? How can you feel into what wants to happen and find greater flow in life and work? What does it mean to be so authentic and transparent that we live as truth with nothing to hide? Penney and I dive into these questions and many more on this week's show as we discuss her new book, Transparency: Seeing Through to Our Expanded Human Capacity, which I was incredibly honored to write the foreword for.
Rank #10: 119: Off the Clock—Finding Time Freedom with Laura Vanderkam
Laura Vanderkam is a productivity tour de force: she has written four books in the last several years, launched a podcast, and given talks all over the country—all while running a household with her husband and four children. I’d tell you that I truly don’t know how she does it, except that she already wrote a book to answer that question called, what else, I Know How She Does It: How Successful Women Make the Most of Their Time. One of my other favorites was her runaway bestseller among the Fast Company crowd, What the Most Successful People Do Before Breakfast: A Short Guide to Making Over Your Mornings--and Life. The focus of this week’s podcast conversation is her newest book, Off the Clock: Feel Less Busy While Getting More Done. Laura reveals the counterintuitive principles the most time-free people have adopted, and teaches mindset shifts to help you feel calm on the busiest days.
Rank #11: How to Stop Feeling Like Sh*t — With Andrea Owen
"I stopped following, bypassing my inner critic, knowing full well the future of my total physical and mental health was not dependent on Ms. Bendy Six Pack Von Instagram." —Andrea Owen, How to Stop Feeling Like Sh*t Although it seems like the holidays should be nothing but rosy and bright, filled with gratitude and good cheer, sometimes being back in our home of origin (with family, longtime friends, and/or in-laws) can send us into a personal growth regression machine. In past years I’ve caught myself reverting to my worst habits—whether it’s using the tone of voice of a high-schooler, layering on guilt for not being my best self, or not taking care of myself in the ways I know that i need in order to recharge and stay sane amidst the extraversion and people-immersion this time of year. So I purposefully scheduled this awesome episode with my good friend Andrea Owen for this exact week. A time when, despite your best intentions, you might find yourself falling into the familiar traps of perfectionism, people-pleasing, controlling, and about 10+ others that get in our way and make us feel like sh*t. I hope you enjoy this conversation and find as much relief in it as I did!
Rank #12: Monetize Your Ideas with Dorie Clark
What's the secret to becoming a recognized expert? Once you are well-known in your field, how do you monetize those ideas (without being sleazy) to build a successful business? This week I'm bringing my good friend Dorie Clark back on the podcast to share her best road-tested tips for reputation- and business-building. She’s the author of two fantastic books that I mention in PIVOT— Reinventing You and Stand Out—and the New York Times has called her an “expert at self-reinvention and helping others make changes in their lives.”
Rank #13: 100: Ten Lessons Learned in 3+ Years of Podcasting
This week marks a big milestone for the Pivot Podcast, as we celebrate the 100th episode! This has been more than three years in the making, from the show's early, scrappy beginnings in late 2014, when I got the book deal for Pivot, to when I started publishing weekly in earnest in 2015. Podcasting is a labor of love, but the biggest surprises for me have come from the priceless benefits: connecting more deeply with my author heroes, with all of you who are here listening, and learning every day along the way. In addition to the countless content nuggets of wisdom I’ve taken away from these 100 interviews—on everything from cyber security to finding one's home frequency (check out the full show archive here)—in this week's episode I'm sharing 10 behind-the-scenes lessons from three years of podcasting. As I’ve always said with blogging, which I did for nearly ten years before switching to this format, what you see (and hear) today is the result of 1,000 tiny iterations over time.
Rank #14: Second Chance at Life After Kidney Donation — with Keith McArthur
On a sunny, spring day in 2016 doctors told Keith McArthur his kidneys were about to fail. Over the next 12 months they continued to break down, no longer able to filter toxins. Poisons built up in his body and brain. He began to feel sick and tired and confused. After a life-saving transplant from one of his sisters, and despite being a lifelong skeptic, Keith began "ingesting every self-help resource [he] could get [his] hands on." No longer convinced they were all "written by charlatans and mansplainers," he began a journey to discover how to truly live. As he writes in his new book, 18 Steps to Own Your Life: Simple Powers for a Healthier, Happier You, “It’s not like I was unhappy before…but something was missing. Like most of us, I never really learned how to be human. No really. So, I made a decision to learn the skills I needed to finally own my life.” In this conversation, we cover Keith's powerful story and insights about life before and after almost dying from kidney failure, lessons from raising a child with severe mental and physical disabilities, how he listens to his body's signals more after the operation, and what it means to "permit the pivot."
Rank #15: Deep Work: Ditch Cognitive Junk Food with Cal Newport
“At the exact point that deep work is becoming increasingly valuable, it is also becoming more rare.” —Cal Newport
Rank #16: Social Startup Success: How the Best Nonprofits Launch, Scale Up, and Make a Difference with Kathleen Kelly Janus
You all know how I love serendipity—well, this week's guest, Stanford professor and philanthropist Kathleen Kelly Janus, and I met in one of my favorite ways! Sitting next to each other on an airplane. Kathleen was traveling to New York City to meet with publishers to try to get a book deal, Pivot was about to come out, and I had known her agent Lisa DiMona for many years (she represented Seth Godin at the time I met him). I'm thrilled to share that in the two years since we met, Kathleen's book, Social Startup Success: How the Best Nonprofits Launch, Scale Up, and Make a Difference, has launched! In this episode we dive into what makes fundraising for non-profits different from for-profit businesses, why so many hit revenue plateaus, why success is based far more on measurable inputs and small experiments than having a "genius" founder, and how to get involved with causes you care about if you find the vast array of volunteering and donating opportunities a bit intimidating.
Rank #17: Penney Interviews Jenny—We Are Souls: On Past Lives, Alignment Practices, Conscious Creation and Non-Icky Marketing and Manifestation
We're back! Penney Peirce and I continue our ongoing series based on her vast spiritual oeuvre—this time with the microphone tables turned. She's interviewing me as we dive deeper into past lives, alignment practices, saying no to "sexy shoulds," clearing one's personal field to contribute to collective energy healing, marketing and manifesting in an authentic way, and so much more. Be sure to check out Penney's new book, Transparency: Seeing Through to Our Expanded Human Capacity, for which I was delighted and deeply honored to write the foreword :) This episode of the Pivot Podcast is the sixth in our series series together—the Penney & Jenny Show! Check out our previous conversations here: Transparency Part 1: What does your soul know?, Transparency Part 2: Soul Groups, Intuition and Frequency, Dreams as a Doorway to 24-Hour Consciousness, and Perception: Navigating Our Non-Linear Universe.
Rank #18: The Upside of Stress with Kelly McGonigal
"My heart is pounding because my heart is in it. Because I care. Because my body is getting ready to rise to this challenge." —Kelly McGonigal, author of The Upside of Stress Have you fallen into the trap of thinking that all stress is toxic? If so, you may be unknowingly compounding the effects of it on your body and mind—or at least missing out on some of the benefits and insights stress has to offer. Kelly McGonigal, a pioneer in the field of "science help" and one of my favorite authors, debunks a number of stress myths in the episode.
Rank #19: Ego is the Enemy with Ryan Holiday
What happens when you reach previously unimaginable pinnacles of success . . . and still find yourself miserable? I’m stoked to bring you today’s Pivot Podcast with Ryan Holiday—marketing master, studier of Stoic philosophy, and author of several bestselling books.
Rank #20: Life is Not Scalable: On Ditching Tired Business Rules with Scott Stratten
"I don't scale. Life is not scalable. You choose where your time goes." —Scott Stratten, author of UnMarketing: Stop Marketing. Start Engaging.