Robert Greene: Alive Time vs. Dead Time [The Knowledge Project Ep. #35]
In this interview, I chat with Robert Greene (@RobertGreene), five-time NYT bestselling author, speaker, and world-renowned strategist. We discuss his famous notecard system, how to spot a bullshitter, and how to use the rules of power to get the most out of life.
Robert’s books have been somewhat controversial over the years and have been called amoral, cunning, and even ruthless for what they reveal. Yet millions of readers, from mid-level managers to hip-hop royalty and corporate executives have revered his work as a canonized scripture for the ambitious.
In this conversation, we cover a lot of ground, including:
- Why Robert believes his first book, 48 Laws of Power has continued to sell steadily for over two decades.
- What Robert calls “alive time” and “dead time” and how we can optimize each day to be filled with “alive time” and live the life we’re proud of
- The one skill that determines how far you’ll get in life, no matter how talented you are in anything else
- Robert’s research method and how he finds such unique and interesting examples
- What Robert looks for when he reads, and what qualities separate good books from excellent books
- How Robert developed his famous note card system to extract the meat out of anything he reads
- Why Robert insists on writing all his notes longhand even though it’s less convenient and less accessible than taking notes digitally
- What Robert’s daily routine looks like, particularly when he’s writing and researching for a new book
- What Robert considers to be the single greatest power any human has, and what we can do to strengthen it
- How having unfettered access to information is actually making us dumber in very important ways and what we can do about it
- How to fine-tune your “bullshit detector” so you’re able to tell the difference between pretenders and performers. (As a bonus, Robert shares a few ways you can improve your bullshitting skills when it becomes necessary)
And a lot more.
Plus, Robert gives us a sneak peek into his newest project, The Laws of Human Nature, which explores the hidden motivations that drive what we do and say.
This interview is packed to the brim with interesting and actionable insights that I think you’re going to love. Grab a pen, a notebook, and a glass of wine and enjoy!
- Listen on iTunes
- Stream by clicking here.
- Download as MP3 by right-clicking here and choosing “save as”.
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- The 48 Laws of Power
- The 33 Strategies of War
- The Laws of Human Nature
- The Path to Power: The Years of Lyndon Johnson by Robert Caro
- Master Of The Senate: The Years of Lyndon Johnson by Robert Caro
- The Passage of Power: The Years of Lyndon Johnson by Robert Caro
- Means of Ascent: The Years of Lyndon Johnson by Robert Caro
- Titan: The Life of John D. Rockefeller, Sr. by Ron Chernow
- The Prince
- The Art of War
- von Clausewitz
- Guns, Germs, and Steel: The Fates of Human Societies
- Collapse: How Societies Choose to Fail or Succeed: Revised Edition
- The Third Chimpanzee: The Evolution and Future of the Human Animal
- The Tigress of Forli: Renaissance Italy’s Most Courageous and Notorious Countess, Caterina Riario Sforza de’ Medici
- War Before Civilization