#367: Robert Greene – On Meditation, Success & Death - Deepstash
#367: Robert Greene – On Meditation, Success & Death

#367: Robert Greene – On Meditation, Success & Death

Curated from: The Danny Miranda Podcast

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Meditation for Self-awareness

Meditation for Self-awareness

Robert Greene believed that meditation wasn't about giving up worldly ambitions, but instead, it allowed him to understand himself better and align his ambitions with his true self.

Through meditation, Greene was able to gain self-awareness and live a more authentic life. This practice helped him stay connected to his true values and achieve success without losing himself.

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268 reads

Avoiding Yes Men

Avoiding Yes Men

Danny asks Robert how he avoids surrounding himself with people who don't tell him the truth, despite his success.

  • As a writer, Robert doesn't have a "court" of people.
  • However, he admits to being a control freak and feeling uncomfortable when he loses control due to too many employees.

Robert receives praise from people onlikne, but he is still self-critical and doesn't fully believe the compliments.

He blames this negative mindset on his upbringing and the societal pressure to conform, which tames individuals and prevents them from being their true selves.

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Reflecting on Success

Reflecting on Success

Achieving success does not mean avoiding challenges. For Robert, even his stroke was a valuable lesson that shaped his character.

Unlike many others, Robert doesn't let success get to his head. This allows him to approach new projects with a fresh perspective and constantly strive for growth.

  • He always starts each project with a beginner's mindset, giving him an edge to improve with each new endeavor.
  • At times, he can be too hard on himself and forget to celebrate his achievements. But he recognizes the importance of acknowledging and patting himself on the back occasionally.

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Lessons from 12+ Years of Meditation:

Lessons from 12+ Years of Meditation:

  • Robert's meditation practice involves daily sessions of Zen meditation, sitting for 35-45 minutes in complete silence.
  • Meditation is a source of creativity as it taps into his unconscious and brings forth new and unexplored ideas.
  • The mind becomes like an empty, blue sky - free from hindrances and fixed ideas - through meditation.
  • He emphasizes the importance of connecting ambition to something deep within oneself, rather than pursuing empty or external goals.

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Importance of Boredom

Importance of Boredom

Overcoming Boredom:

  • Starting a new skill or activity can be frustrating and boring
  • Persistence and pushing through the initial boredom lead to magical outcomes
  • Daily practice, despite the initial boredom, leads to gradual improvement.

Boredom as Resistance:

  • Boredom is a form of resistance that strengthens the brain, body, and spirit
  • Resistance training in various aspects of life, including boredom, builds strength and resilience
  • Many people fail in life because they avoid or cannot handle boredom and resistance
  • Developing a life task and pursuing one's passions is essential to push through boredom

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Common Mistakes Young Writers Make

Common Mistakes Young Writers Make

Writers in their twenties often make the following mistakes:

  1. Poor punctuation, spelling, and grammar skills
  2. Underestimating the importance of writing as a skill
  3. Assuming that writing doesn't require effort or practice
  4. Focusing on their ego rather than effective communication
  5. Using clever phrases and puns without conveying meaningful content

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Developing Empathy

Developing Empathy

Empathy is important and can be learned.

Ways to develop empathy:

  • Redirect self-love to others
  • Genuinely try to understand others' perspectives
  • Childhood experiences can influence empathy
  • Empathy can come from a place of vulnerability and compensating for perceived weaknesses

Empathy can improve relationships and connections with others. 🤝

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Discovering Writing Potential

Discovering Writing Potential

Since high school, Robert excelled in writing essays. His amazing English teacher's praise motivated him to become a great writer. He longed to fulfill this dream, no matter what challenges came his way.

  • Robert strongly believes in his destiny to become a writer.
  • He describes a unique internal voice that always guided him towards writing.
  • He credits this voice to his innate genetic code and life experiences.
  • According to Robert, this makes him irreplaceable and distinct.

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Does Robert's Empathy Cause Problems?

Does Robert's Empathy Cause Problems?

Robert helps people on his podcast, but cannot respond to emails as often due to age and a stroke.

Previously:

  • Robert would email to help people.
  • Hearing sad stories made it difficult for him to respond quickly.

He now struggles to keep up with emails and feels detached as a result. This could cause problems if he were a therapist.

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Robert's View on Success and Freedom

Robert's View on Success and Freedom

Success is freedom in Robert's eyes, as his publisher gives him the freedom to write without restrictions or interference.

  • He values this freedom immensely, as he doesn't have the pressures of a boss or limited topics to write about.
  • He has to be disciplined and focused on his work to maintain his success and freedom as a writer.

Robert reflects on how he never fully understood the importance of this freedom in his younger years, but now he realizes its great value.

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Robert's Perspective on Death

Robert's Perspective on Death

As we grow older, our understanding of death evolves. In our youth, it seems distant and insignificant. But with time, as we experience the loss of loved ones and our own mortality, death becomes more tangible and real.

  • Experiencing death in a near-death experience made it more than an intellectual concept
  • He describes feeling death's presence in his body, which changed his perspective on life and death
  • The stroke made him value life's fragility and find joy in simple moments, like watching birds outside his window
  • He now sees death as a tangible reality.

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Ryan Holiday's Willingness to Learn

Ryan Holiday's Willingness to Learn

  • Robert appreciated Ryan Holiday's youthfulness, energy, and enthusiasm.
  • He sensed that Ryan had intelligence and wasn't just seeking personal gain or idolizing him.
  • Ryan's ability to fix Robert's Wikipedia page impressed him, especially considering the state of the internet at the time.
  • Robert asked Ryan to do some research for the 50 Cent book, but found it lacking and criticized him.
  • Ryan didn't take the criticism personally, and was receptive to learning and improving.
  • Ryan's willingness to learn and grow from criticism made Robert want to work with him.

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Robert's Work: Valuing Experiences Over Money

Robert's Work: Valuing Experiences Over Money

  • Robert's work is driven by his desire for valuable experiences, rather than monetary gain.
  • He is particularly interested in working with athletes, coaches, and trainers, due to his passion for sports.
  • He also enjoys learning how to navigate challenging situations, such as working with political figures.
  • He used to take freelance jobs to support his writing, and never pursued high-paying careers for the money.
  • Even though he has achieved financial stability, Robert's motivation has always been driven by his love for the work itself, rather than the desire for wealth.

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