Joe Rogan: Choose Your Struggle – Aubrey Marcus Podcast

Check out the Aubrey Marcus Podcast Episode Page & Show Notes

Key Takeaways

  • Podcasts are one of the most accurate windows into a person
  • Be authentic, stop trying to hide behind an image
  • Life’s hard times allow you to grow, and also make you appreciate the good days
  • EMBRACE the chaos of daily life – LET GO of the need for control
  • Create your own struggles in life (through things likes intense physical exercise) to minimize life’s daily, acute struggles
    • “People need a certain amount of conflict and a certain amount of struggle and they create that struggle if they don’t get it in some sort of an organic form”
  • You are NOT your past
  • Forget psychedelics, you probably just need to spend some time alone in nature – it’s the ultimate perspective enhancer


Joe’s Extremely Popular Podcast

  • Two years ago the podcast just seemed to have caught fire. Now it’s taken over my life and it basically runs itself…”
    • It now gets about 190 million downloads per month (woah)
  • Joe’s secret sauce for his podcast:
    • “Be authentic, try to be yourself, and be honestly interested in the guest”
    • To add – Because Joe doesn’t work for anyone, he only has people on his podcast who he’s solely interested in
  • Joe says he only has 3 people on his podcast team
    • Speculation from Podcast Notes – One of the people is definitely his producer, Jamie (@JamieVeron), another is probably someone who works guest recruitment, and then someone who deals with the finances
      • It’s estimated that the podcast brings in $50-100 million/year

Authenticity in the Podcasting Space

  • “In the human world, there’s never been a thing like a podcast before” – something so free and readily available
  • “Hiding is one of the most fundamental traits of a human being. We project some avatar or some image aimed to appear to others a certain way in order to protect ourselves.” – Aubrey
    • But you can’t hide if you host a podcast – you’re forced to be authentic
  • “If you try to watch late-night television now, after podcasts, it seems so corny and so stupid…They’re just throwing these phony questions at these people and the host probably doesn’t give a shit about the guest’s new television show or their new album or whatever…”
  • Podcasts are one of the most accurate windows into a person – that authentic conversation, just letting things flow
    • Other media is fake:
      • Instagram is filtered
      • Late night talk shows are staged with questions  

It’s Hard For People to Be Themselves

  • “Hiding certain elements of your humanity so that you appear in a certain way is f*cking exhausting and ultimately you’re fishing with the lure that isn’t your real self” – Aubrey
  •  “It’s hard for people to be themselves – they don’t like themselves. They don’t like what they are and so they like to pretend that there’s something more exceptional to them instead of working at it.” – Joe
    • But people truly appreciate the opposite – those who are authentic, open, and work continuously to improve themselves
  • “The freedom of being able to just say who you are and be authentic… the freedom to do that has got to be something that will enhance all aspects of your life” – Aubrey

Life’s Hard Times Allow You to Grow (and better appreciate the good days)

  • Perhaps humans are’t programmed to be “steady and stable” – there will always be ups and downs
    • Really, there’s never been a time in human history where life has been super peaceful and easy
  • “When things are going bad and you’re just having shitty day after shitty day….that really makes you appreciate the good days”
  • “Every time I’ve gotten better at stand-up, it’s almost directly connected to bombing”
  • “That’s the bright side of tragedy – when you come through it, you really have an appreciation for the moments without tragedy.”

Embrace the Chaos

  • The world around us is chaos – you need to embrace it and let go of the need for control
    • “Too many people are trying to curate a life of total passivity and calmness. That shit’s nonsense.”

Create Your Own Struggle

  • “People need a certain amount of conflict and a certain amount of struggle and they create that struggle if they don’t get it in some sort of an organic form”
    • “The more I create my own struggle, the more I orchestrate it through intense exercise where you’re knocking on the door of whether your body is going to make it through….the more you do that, the more it minimizes those other struggles in life”
      • What exercise? – Joe’s a fan of hot yoga, martial arts, and trail running
  • “You get so much more benefit out of a struggle that you choose to embark on versus a struggle that life throws upon you”

Discipline and Family Life

  • Family plays an important role in Joe’s life
    • He only practices stand-up after his kids go to bed, and stills gets up every morning and tries to take them to school
    • His podcasts are recorded during the day so as not to interfere with family time
    • When Joe travels for comedy, he takes the earliest flight out the following day without fail, even if it means getting 2-3 hours of sleep
  • On the topic of discipline and how Joe handles family life, the podcast, doing stand-up comedy, and daily exercise:
    • Jocko Willink has famously said – “Discipline equals freedom”
      • “That Nike slogan, ‘Just do it,’ is one of the greatest slogans of all time…Go f*cking do something and then in the middle of doing it, it will become easy.”

You Are Not Your Past

  • “You are not your past. You might have done some things in the past that you wish you hadn’t done – don’t dwell on them, you learn from it.”
    • It’s never too late to start – on a new diet, on a side hustle, or a new exercise regimen
  • Don’t think of yourself as someone who made mistakes in the past, think of yourself as the person who’s learned from them

Know the Way Broadly, You Can See it in All Things

  • A famous Miyaoto Musashi quote:
    • “Know the way specifically, you know the way broadly. Know the way broadly, you know the way specifically.”
  • Joe loves to try new/different things he isn’t very good at – like archery or a new type of yoga
    • “Doing those things that I suck at, helps me in other areas”  – He’s “learning about learning”

Forget Plant Medicine, You Probably Just Need to Spend Some Time Alone in Nature

  • Humans have the tendency to run from boredom and discomfort by pulling out our phones
    • “Being in nature, it’s just you and the Earth, and you let your phone and all this other stuff go and remodulate back to a different biorhythm where you actually sit with yourself through the boredom and discomfort – that’s the ultimate medicine” – Aubrey
  • Being alone in nature is the ultimate perspective enhancer
    • It’s all about stepping away from the “hum of civilization”
    • “When you’re in the woods, one of the first things you realize when you sit down and look out over a large ridge or valley….you realize this stuff doesn’t give a f*ck about me. It’s been here long before me and will be here long after I’m gone.” – Joe
  • “But f*ck man, just spend some time in nature…Just be with yourself and mind the stillness.” – Aubrey

Social Media

  • Joe doesn’t read any of the comments on his social media posts 
  • Humans aren’t built for the dopamine and status seeking nature of social media
  • It is SO IMPORTANT to examine and assess all the ways that you validate yourself externally which allow you to love yourself internally
    • Whether it’s by using Instagram or through the money you’re making
    • “Whatever way you’re getting external validation for who you are that makes you worthy of love….you better hunt that shit. You better look at it. You better find it in the corners of your brain and examine it. Otherwise, it’s hunting you and you’re not hunting it and will f*cking eat your face and get you.” – Aubrey

Wrapping Up

  • Choosing to engage in your own struggles is critical
  • “Get out there and hustle…It’s important not just for success, but it’s important for your head, it’s important for your friendships, and it’s important for your life.”


  • “I like to pop a heavy edible before a flight and just sit there to check out the dark corners of my brain…because that’s when you learn things, when you can’t go anywhere”

These notes were edited by RoRoPa Editing Services

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