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#163: Michael Gelb, Applying Genius Thinking

2018-11-27
Michael Gelb found his calling during a tumultuous time in American history. It was during the polarized 1970s Gelb decided he wanted to look for ways to help people clearly think through and debate real issues. He found meditation to be a good starting point, which eventually led him to England, where he studied the spiritual traditions of the world and how they're interconnected. Gelb explains how he took these studies of consciousness and self-awareness and translated them into practical techniques to help people think more clearly and creatively. Have a question for Dan? Leave us a voicemail at 646-883-8326. The Plug Zone Website: https://michaelgelb.com/ Twitter: @MichaelJGelb
This is an unofficial transcript meant for reference. Accuracy is not guaranteed.
For maybe see the ten percent happier vodka in her everybody we get a renaissance man on the show this week. Michael J Guild, can talk about meditation as it relates to everything from creativity to prison development to organizational development. Innovation has written a bunch of including how to think, like Leonardo Da Vinci, seven steps to genius every day I also creativity on demand. Innovate like Edson. Anyway, you get a sense of the he's, a prolific guy who, who thinks about a whole range things already also talked a lot about posture as it relates to meditation in life. So I got a lot out of this interview. I think you will to that's coming up in just a second. Wouldn't do your voice knows enough in a moment? First, though, just want to give you as an item of business. Here I want to give you a sense of some new content were working on over at ten percent happier, the app
We got a new meditation up that you should check out its with my friends. My friends have worn the fantastic meditation teacher on he calls it holiday hilarity. I think he's saying that with his tongue, in his cheek. This is stressful time for all of us and Jeff just gotta meditations, specifically designed to help you deal. I am also just one let you know that we were just in the studio with Joseph Goldstein. the amazing Joseph Goldstein who still hasn't been on the show, we're gonna be put up a new course on the app from him. That's coming up soon, artless get your voice males. Here's number one page from the UK, but living in California. I started meditating about three years ago, thanks to your books, and thanks for that- and I see some some major benefit to some big change them out because of studying gonna. Take you to the great but have also had some strange experience. It also
On the side of Canada having guy, I know you have struggled to read value they interpret them say things like when you meditating stormy, sensations funny vibrations or Russia, the energy or even on occasion, I've been deeply meditating. I find my head for moving around involuntary. I can't explain these things using shine, Conrad and asylum and their bleared, and I wondered and inherent in speaking about the EU and I wanted to use expressed any these and how you interpret or taxi. from what I understand. What you're describing is incredibly common, there's a name for it in the ancient in the language of Polly, which the Buddha is is said to have spoken. P p. I t I us sometimes translated, as I think it's rapture. I think that's the translation
it's just. I use it and I hope I'm using a correctly just to describe tat part it is a body sensations that come when the mind gets concentrated and, as my meditation practice has developed and I've gotten a little bit more concentrated onawandah. This overstate my level of concentrate. I there are times when you can get everything from sort of tingles too should have an involuntary are rocking back and forth, and it's a little weird at first, it's kind of my my experience a pleasant in discussing this with meditation teachers. It's usually a sign that Europe, you know get your mind, is concentrated the level of discursive random. thinking has gone down a little bit and that can have interesting
facts on the body and mind the one thing that the aforementioned Joseph Goldstein has said to me before is with the rocking back and forth, because that there can be a little pleasant. You might notice that your feeding it subconsciously and you might look look for that and see if, if your feet yet in, and you probably don't need need to do that so anyway, I would say not only to forget about. I dont know if the scientific explanation for it is that would be a great question for us to pursue on the Pakistan and some mental note. Let's pursue that. Why scientifically does the body. in mind. Do the body and mind react in an interesting ways to increase concentration, but why get so without it? Without a b, able to ask you further questions to diagnose. What's going on with you, for my somewhat informed position
It sounds to me like this is a completely normal development and probably a healthy one in the course of your meditation practice so onwards. Sir voicemail or to hurry up high them? My name is the camera, I'm a huge funds and for a long time I'm calling from return. So I have a question: hundred combined meditation being present from the moment, mindful with Megan and for the future, for example, if I want to make a career or I'll try for funding I realise that it has also something to do with the passion for the results and what you're experience been like would love to hear it far from that. Thank you thanks out yonder with this mightily, but the answer, I don't think I'll- think answers that complicated. First of all, you can plan However, any planning you're doing will will take place in the present moment, and so you can be.
as mindful and is aware as possible when you're making your plans obviously you're gonna have to start thinking about the future and learning from the best in that process, but you can continually touch in from a basic blocking and tackling invitation standpoint, as you are doing that or anything you can always touch back into the present moment to be a little meditation teachery there. By being it, put your body being in touch with what you're seeing hearing and a number of basic meditation techniques that we all know or a wish. I hope we all know that you can use to make sure you're kind of giving right now, a little bit of a kiss, while you're doing the planning of the thing about? adding is, I think it's gonna have to do it. I don't think having a meditation practice means that you should be perpetually present. I mean I would be great if you could
that's not having to me so the way I broached at sea, I mean there's a certain amount of planning and plotting and stress in walking around pacing and think about the angle. And how things are gonna play out and and blah blah blah that that you have to do in order to have a healthy career. I would not want to discourage you from doing any of that work. I find the old Joseph Goldstein expression that he mentioned me when I first met him on retreat back in two thousand and ten. That has been just incredibly helpful in this process. On the eighty seven times your running through all the scenarios in your head, maybe ask yourself the question: is this useful? that little mantra. Is this useful? Just giving yourself permission do the plotting and planning you need to do to have a healthy, successful career. thence rowing in that little mantra? Is this useful when you notice yourself going down
rabbit hole I might spirits really helps me walk. That line between doing what I need to do in order to you know, survive and stay afloat and and and in my case, a pretty cutthroat career and also not make myself miserable and, and Everybody else around me miserable, Finally, you mentioned not attachment to results. Are I wrote about this? My first book ice it's easier said than done, but I certainly attempt to do it to the best of my ability, which is you just to recognise that live in a universe where most of things are out of our control, so we can do a bunch of work. Whatever it is. We were working on. We can think about our career and try to network and go to the right school and get the right internships whatever it is, but you you, you can't control all the outcomes. That's just at just the deal
so not attachments results is the only safe way to proceed again easier said than done. I wish I did it more than I do but as a north, star too pretty healthy one. So great question tat you and I wish you the best of luck and I hope the foregoing has been to call out or to echo Josephs phrase. I hope this we're going has been useful. All let's get to Michael Galva, our guest this week. Here's just a couple lines from his bio he is the world's leading authority on application of genius. Thinking to personal and organizational development is also a pioneer in the field of creative thinking, executive, coaching and innovation. Innovative leadership so long way of saying he'd works with individuals and corporations, including major ones like Du Pont and and Microsoft and Nike on helping people be awesome, professional speaker is executive coaches written a bunch of book sightless, some of them earlier. Also,
is of great interest to me. He's a practitioner of the Alexander technique, which is not named after my son, it's away to get people, especially people and performance positions, to have better posture? And that, of course, has a huge mindfulness component, so here is Michael Gulp nice to meet you pleasure, As I told you before, we start rolling, I am woefully. I want you to say under informed of this clearly uninformed about you came through a friend who reckoning did you and the most lavish of possible terms. So I listen to this friend she's, very smart, so glad to have you here, and I know you're interested in a lot of things that I actually don't know much about so excited alert, lovely long way of saying well, thank you
so I would start with this. The only question I plan in advance is the first one, which is: how did you come to meditation in the first place? I was nineteen. I was in college. I was studying political science, they thought maybe we could just figure out how to make the world less crazy. What year was that this was nineteen seventy two yeah, and so the world at that time seemed totally divided, really filled with stress. kind of like today sounds familiar and- I quickly realized that put Besides wasn't really much of a science and peoples would you be polarized and not really thinking so I switched to psychology as for you, ok, misunderstand the mind and how we can open and shift the people
mine, so they can be better able to think Think about real issues. and that was fascinate. I love psychology, but it seemed academic. It seemed kind of limited. My professors were wonderful and brilliant, but They didn't seem to me to be really fully integrated people, so I switch the philosophy which also has really cool, I love probing the great questions and but that also they couldn't back it up. So I discovered a group That was meditating and I started going meditation retreats my nineteen birthday. What flavour of Russia There was the basket. Robins of marriage is all kinds of different lives. Now it was actually with a group that the person who led the guy, had been the secretary to G, I garage. If it was it was he Turkish
Armenia in Turkish? Who was this amazing teacher, meditation, spirituality self awareness and they had a group? The sky had help was the second Terry to grief and help right, his greatest book known as all in everything, and so I should. Every weekend, and we would learn self awareness and we were just sit and be present, which did not come naturally to me at all. My mind's still tends to go in a zillion different directions all at once, but it was such a wonderful contrast. I thought that's the place to look for the answers that I am am seeking.
that was a beginning and well. How did a governor well from there? I thought nothing more important than understanding consciousness, so I actually there's college in three years. So I could go off to England, where I spent ten months at that. Residential school to study the spiritual traditions of the world, with an amazing genius who had pretty much master an integrated all of them, and it's called the The National Academy for continuous education was her. His name was J G Bennet. He had been on an officer in World WAR, one the british army, he got blown up and found himself found his consciousness floating above his body, which was in the in the town.
And eventually recovered, but what kind of hospitality so shifted his whole world because it pretty much a conventional orientation up until that point later he was posted as the british Council to Turkey and whose fluent in Turkish she was. He spoke eleven languages and Turkish was one of I'm so he starts to meet people who seem to be able to explain this experience to him. They were very soupy teachers, so he began became. Initiate of Sophie tradition and then long before was a cartoon in the new Yorker. He travelled to India, climbed a mountain. Met a guru asked you what is the secret of enlightenment and so on, and he was able to do this whenever language was necessary because he could speak Indian. It was familiar with all of the online. She brought back that wisdom and
it really is. Whole life was devoted to this quest but he also was a mathematician who became head of coal research for Britain during World WAR, two as a very accomplish brilliant scientific mine, but the driving force of his life was to understand consciousness to understand who we are. Why we're here? How do you make your life meaningful and purposeful site that Harrison opportunity go spend ten months with was more important in knowing why we're here within what why I'm here? What's what is consciousness? I'm gonna go, find out, my possibly gun and it was a phenomenal. Ten months we had a buddhist monks, a bit of a cambodian monastery who was in residence and taught us meditation every evening, and it was
if we leave we fasted once a week. We had days of total silence, love what people call mindful this practice is now we just part of what we did. when every afternoon he would give a talk and he would cross correlate the great spiritual tax of the world and talk about what they really matter. The practical way, so that was the unbelievable opportunity. Having said that, he also had. an amazing gift. I found this gift in many of the most potent teachers I've met and the gift is the greatest mirror that cuts through all of you're rubbish. And, oh, my god, it was just torture. It just cause I was there you, I thought my my dream. I ideal was
get enlightened study, spirituality, learn about all this beef inwardly, free but when I became aware of I was so attached and identified. My physical desires to my egotism. It was, just highlighting your there at one of these, we would do is to cultivate deeper per option, and I shall ever myself cause the perception that I got good cultivating was. I could tell the biggest piece of toast and the breadth. line from your really far away, because just hungry at all times, about it, every feeding you enough, no, you is, it was a sort of real asceticism, but it wasn't lavish minimalist, minimal, Leslie and you're a twenty one year old God. Just
but never meditating. So there's there's this wonderful cambodian monk. We just called the Monti, which means monk and Mister Bennet to us is very powerful and- and wonderful figure and we're in this meditation- and I just remember seeing a hamburger, ha ha ha fleet has just give me a hamburger but there's something about how we take these experiences of humiliation cuz. It was humiliating, but in a in a way that turned out to be wonderful cuz. I eventually reached the point I went to Mr Bennet. I requested an interview cuz that wasn't a normal part of you have to make a special request to come and see you, and I, when I told my,
oh come on out of my skinnier mean I'm so not spiritual, I'm! So not! This is not working. For me I mean anxious and end of self obsessed and all the stuff it sounds like is working to me what will happen. When I was a funny thing is it was great cause? First of all, I shall never forget this quasi. He really listen and he said well. She said something like yes, that's true, but but then he said he said. What would I remembered the specific remember saying was the work of transformation is in your essence. It is your very nature and its will just working in what I got from is not his exact words.
When I got was just this just working through this individual with this drama in this story and this yadda yadda blah blah blah, and I felt this alignment with that. In our working that inner presents an eye, I experienced this wonderful fence, a peace and and freedom and in that moment in that work for the next three months, because this happened three months before this course ended so for the last Three months of this, this is in the english countryside and the walls, squares, beautiful place and I'd say, probably For the long stretch of time in my life, I thought I was just felt a sense of of buoyancy and peace and inner light and loving kindness, and I was
we learned this says Sophia Meditations called the zipper and it's a breathing practice. It's like a who die Breathin yoga is all sorts of different variations of it, but this this was very powerful very simple, and it was happening spontaneously the whole time for the last three months of this, just because one conversation Well, the recovery we ve been studying all the stuff for the previous seven months, but it's just have after that. One car conversation I just that worry it just and felt like it at all, was just flowing room. Yes, so it's like you had all the learning in practice, the doing the practice and then intellectually aims the ideas you're blocking a little bit through your own neurotic autism,
oh, it's out going out and so K. This is human, nor part of your human condition at the very least, to be the way you are, and then you were like am a cabinet atrocity. Hard worry about he's, hang ups, and now that I was a net stuff comes through, that's that's kind of it yeah and then he said so. If it was also really wise when the when the ten months came to an end, he said, don't try to do and the practices that you ve learned here, he said just let it all go. And then see what emerges naturally to hit him when he was very smart and want to create people. out there doing some thing. Some system that there are imposing on the authentic at Others would be receptive and see. What's really you're see what has really been integrated into your luck, so so you built a career subsequently in.
mindfulness meditations spirituality, is that everything you ve done has flowed through that lends? Well that's up until recently, its that's been. Might that the secret underpinnings of everything I do so. I knew that I was going to figure out a way to express what I learned share what I learned, and I was sure exactly how goes the next thing that happened to me was a kind of a panic, and it was ok, cool I've been on this metaphorical mountaintop for almost a year and have these? fabulous experiences. I knew I wasn't monk ascetic type, so I wasn't gonna go live in a spiritual community. You go to India or anything like that. It's all, my friends had dysentery said. I'm not gonna, set I have felt what I'm gonna do in the world. How will I translate all
into the market place- and I knew my criteria were really clear. I knew I wanted to do something that would help heal the world and, at the same time, help me to experience homeless and happy all self expression. I wanted to be fun, something I can learn and somebody would make a difference. so naive. Wonderful way and idealistic. I do I really don't think about money. I did not think about. I figure. If I do something good it'll be sustainable, and but just just those criteria it has to help others. It has to be something I will love to do so thought of going to medical school. But in those days they did not have integrity of medicine. You just had to study disease, which I really was an interesting as I thought of getting a phd in clinical cycle.
Same thing had to study neurosis and psychosis, there was the positive psychology, yet so I'd. That's when I that's. When I had my juggling epiphany, I became a juggler when I was at Mister, Bennet, scorn and funny because previous yes Doktor Martineau Epstein, similar to bank. Yes, did they basically the juggling caused him to relax the thinking mind so, yes, I experience that and actually than work my way through graduate school as a professional juggler. I want struggled live on stage with the Mick Jagger and the rolling stones on age and interpretive juggler, on a stage shaped like Mick Jagger, his mouth no kidding right on the Tipp of the tongue at the network, rock festival. Actually, I was I thought
Torrejon London how to juggle on good morning America, twenty four years, You have good, never juggling two players after grad school. Well with my parents help me, but I I deficit limited my eye: grad school educate. What did you decide? I obviously juggling thing was important, but what? What was your professional choice then turn of radical, I try to become a teacher of Alexander Technic. Look I've heard of this. My brother did it once yet my son's names Alexander his case. The technique is taking a pope in your pet ha ha ha. Which I'm sure he does effortlessly yea felling Aconite appears a natural rights, was all about love, so yeah, I had discovered the Alexander technique. I had a few case by what it less sure it's it's a method for D.
Being poise and ease in your everyday movements, which then become because particularly relevant, if your performer of any kind of your on stage It's really secretive, developing stage presence, which is a function of what you don't do it's what you leave out. It's not We talkin like this. We don't want to watch you as much right. So it's one of my favorite definitions of it and descriptions of it. Somebody called the secret of keeping your eye on the ball, apply to life. I donors, so self was like juggling. You have to let go you can't grass too much. And then things find their perfect rhythm. You look at your ears. I held your son Bree three Parfois. Ok, so I bet he does everything.
with amazing energy and a lengthening spine and Poppea very expressive face. Ever brushing his tea, because you don't want to do that. Don't thinks he wants to do. Yes, done so naturally, with the whole self full presents upright poise and naturalness. This is our birthright, but then we go to school, into the workplace and we we slip into what. Some researchers have called the startle patter waste. We lose that natural poise, the fear response. What people do they tighten their net muscles hold their breath, Edna Shoulder, tighten their shoulders whole hold, they hold everything and compressed, and this is a particularly
for your functioning or you stayed presents, and if you are in a stressful environment which most of us are stressful job is stressful relationship. This becomes a habit. We get locked into. The startle pattern becomes modified, form of startled becomes our way of being and every beginning of the crooked person who walks the proverbial crooked mile. Lose that natural poise and alive nest, but Alexander, was it shakespearian. I was losing his voice in the middle of performance says he went to all kinds of voice therapists in Doc, Here's to help them. They told him vocal rest all this stuff. None of it worked said. It must be something I'm doing is causing the problem And when he noticed that as soon as the even thought about declaiming apiece from Shakespeare, he started the tight, not just the very thought of it. So
He saw that that pattern then became much more exaggerated when he actually began the soliloquy, for example. So he thought, how can I free myself firmness and didn't have video back, then this is and ninety six in Australia he set up, assist of mirrors and he watched himself in the mirror to see if he could notice what was where he was going off. and sure enough as soon as he even thought about speaking. He said this tendency to just throw his head back a little It short in his neck and start array his chest and tightened shoulders. So he said what happens if I let them go. and eventually he learned to let it go while actually
doing the passage in the result was. He became renowned for the power of his voice, whereas effortless stage presence and people began to come to him for less. It include, including a group of doctors who had an amateur, theatrical company, and the doctors got the idea. Maybe this guy could help some of our patients with on stress conditions, breathing problems and back aches, and so on and Alexander helped many of them so much so that the doctors helped sponsor Alexander to go to London. Is nineteen o four where he soon became known as the protector of the London theatre? He gave lessons to many of the leading actors and actresses of today, and you ll find it. My colleague There are new Yorker teach. The Alexander Technic are working with lots of people down the road at Lincoln, sent on Broadway it. It really is a trade secret of high level performers.
To have that sense of effortless, poise, onstage we start of it as posture. Brother, my you brother, went, and I remember he stopped going so this is not the case here, remember one day was in my apartment with his kids and we walked out of the elevator to go, take a walk or something and said what is different about you and he was just standing tall, and you think I'm doing this- they call the elegant and that's it relate. I have terrible posture, I've really bad push. My wife is always on me about this in a good way to pointing out that I'm just crunched hunched in crunched, and so I always thought avows entertaining not so much about stage presence, but primarily about your posture. I have that wrong, while those of prosperous. It tends to be something of a static concept and you're always entitled. We talk
stillness and movement, movement and stillness so posture is it tends to be a static concept like we. They were frozen interview at my eighth grade, algebra teacher Would turn right on the board? We all slump and she would say pollsters and everybody would sit up really straight with effort well, she turned round again every thought. So posture is not a dynamic. Organic concept. Alexander talked about the use of the self, and he said use affects function now. What does that mean? Well, if you slump, for example, if you type your shoulders, if you hold your breath a little bit, if you stiffen your you'll feel this right away. If you stiffened your knees, locks down your diaphragm, you can't breathe
Well, even as I'm imitating this, you hear my voices starting if it's not getting more resident. So I free myself from that. I read a little more. The voice opens up so the way we use our self moment to moment effects are functioning. Facts are respiration, billowy to think our ability to be present, which his wife, about meditation. What then, It's actually the sitting its if you can really sit there and be really present And they never say, and then just while around do that, every meditative tradition says effectively align around the vertical axis. Expand into your your full stature
be natural, like your son, it is this this renaissance of our birthright. We have his birthright of poise, we have this birthright of almost unlimited energy and wildly fabulous imagination, but people lose touch with that. So and you think the way you carry yourself, your presence were not always on the stage, but let's say stay presence impacts the way your mind is operating and vice versa? Yes, yes, Alexander called it. the universal, constant and living. So what that means is he really getting better all the time you get worse off it die if you are aware of how use yourself. So you are just taking life's traumas?
the trauma of everyday life, the title of a market, another juggler. but various. I love that title because it is the traumas of everyday life that are then reflected in how you tighten your shoulders and maybe three you're defending yourself. By sticking your chest out, or maybe you're depressed, and literally when you're depressed, you're you're depressing your body and you, if, if I, if you sit at your full stature, if you up out and expanded. It helps to have a little in her smile goin on the whole time retainer the again. What do they say in meditation. They try to be cool about it. They don't want to tell a smile did you say, turn the court have your mouth out well, how low, by them
Alexander figures that just think of something funny to smile basically have that free whom this playful attitude in in life- and yes, this affects you're your attitude moment to moment. Put you you cannot feel depression. If your aligned around your vertical axis and you lift up the two sides, really it's try it about the Presto sound prattling next, so in other words, but if, if you like, if we go, I if we spoke slump together, It be a lot easier to feel if we wanted to feel depression. Its much easier to do it? If we ease up the more like you, your son, I sitting there like harder, feel it are you you had Amy
how d you talk to her wonder how conversational she Amy Cutty is famous for her our theory around the power- pose that she is. She says her research suggests that if you strike a powerful pose that actually can help you but you in the right mind, state fur high performance. Although there been a lot of questions raised about the quality of our research, yes and The stress of what I think is a wonderful thing that you brought a scientific lands to this people called the mind. connection as though the really these two separate things and what's your sanskrit has all these words that express the wholeness of body and mind spirit. We don't have we to have many distinctions soldiers. A body mine connection, it's great somebody's, putting out this, I can make people just aware of it that
teaching this by the way for forty years that, before you give a speech, stand in tat, we This is thousands of years old by the way in which you gone tighty, martial arts traditions, you stand in One of the whole range of different poses an you prepare yourself to be really focused and real get the job done, whatever comes to be, if it's a meeting you're goin to her speech you're about to give, but there that the only limitation I'd say to the way People are thinking about. Amy's wonderful work is what, if what, if, instead of striking the occasional pose, when you think you need to raise your guy, aim? What, if you are raising your game, all the time
by the way you move from one thing to another by the way you pick up here and how that affect your signed by the way you pick him up and the quality of your touch and what he's reading unconsciously about your energy in your body, language, in your sense of well being so my passions how to integrate that in too Our everyday lives because then also, then it's really there when you need it. you would, I actually really they go way ahead in the story. What I actually mostly due for money is, I give speeches around the world too, a very large hook. You when I spoke at the same conference, Zephyr MW either Laufer. I was the day before you, I don't remember- yeah. I do a lot of speech and I know you do so. Do I, but I just remember that you were there, so the ten percent happier guys there
So I was the day before so you know what that's like you and your it's one thing to be onstage, and but it also you're going to the airport you're gettin to your hotel. It's not that glamorous that part Russia's right. You just put all this energy. You get older people love you great. You get the big applause even from eternity. I think we did both the pretty well with the attorneys. I heard the avenue tough crowd, but we want em over, but it's not it's not just all that part that is on stage on the light: its how'd, you comport porters, How are you utilizing your energy? What's the quality of your being as you go through all these different moments and scenes and was that your play and Alexander technique is one of the most just magnificent wonder.
Oh. I wish everybody I'm I'm here. I want everybody to know about it at the wheel because I will list private, because I dont know that people are going to understand. So how does it work you? You go, to a place where their teaching it in somebody, you like tickers with your posture and shows you how to do when what's the deal, people go for different reasons, so the deal is a little different yo. If, if, like the teacher, the Juilliard School round the corner, So if you're violinist and your raising her shoulder a little bit, more than eighty two in tightening your neck. We can hear it in the sound so Alexander. Teacher will work with you and help. We become aware of what your do, how partly verbally and partly through. The socialist most elegant gentle touch the kind of
gives you this law or suggestion of a reminder of what it was like when you were naturally poised. I'm really interested in this, because you know, I've noticed that I lack grace in my movements. I had the distinct I hosted. A failed game show but he be seen as part of an I watched. The game show when it was airing had ever heard again after it a couple years ago and call five hundred questions. I think you can see in anew anyway, and I watched the show- and I- and this was really a first and work actually see myself walking around a large space and it just seemed like I I just I did there were. No grace a minute and then I go to Seoul cycle this been clatter of my wife and my wife's next to me and she so grateful and I'm like her. Running, moose, that's been in other by a mountain there like that, and you know
swearing in that the end my I'm hunched over, sure I'm really intrigues by the notion of the alligator technique and I believe, I'm sure you gonna get. That is that there is a big overlap between mindfulness and how you carry yourself, because one requires the how you carry self requires. Do you remember? Yes? Yes, yes, it it's! It's a missing link for a lot of lots of people who they go to their meditation class. They sit on their cushion, and hopefully they have a experience of well being and free and their myself down a little bit and that's wonderfully restorative, but you're gonna spend much more of your life outside of that meditation class or that yoga clap
So what's your yoga? What's your mind from this? What's your meditation of brushing your teeth of driving your car of getting in the subway of cutting a carrot, of going to Seoul cycle of doing everything you do, but you have to keep going right was my brother when a couple, times and I could really cn and carried. It then stop going and now is a small near wealth is so it's always listen. It is a major issue I take a couple lessons and ok. Now I mastered meditation thanks a lot. It's alive practice poise is alive. Practice Alexander is the most elegant, efficient and here's the thing I gotta say something I just
I I still only really like to do things because they feel really good and it feel so much better to move gracefully in court a view of your life. When I see I started, I was on the high school wrestling team play. Basketball has on the tenants team, and I was on the soccer team. You and I had that an athletic carriage and that just disappeared, just melted off as I wet and had Alexander lesson. I can stop actually made me much more athletic much better. Able to learn various performance arts juggling, for example, and I guess I got really good as a jug to juggle five balls I juggled flame.
Clubs. Never you know animals were harmed in the making of this by gas. So and then I realized that I wanted to bring this to. Two people who might not normally experience because it so they teach us that the Juilliard School there. this at the Royal Academy of Music, the Royal Academy of Drama. It's it's woven into the fabric of professional performance schools, because these people the difference between tightening your shoulder and your neck while playing your violin and not is the difference between you sounding a little scratching. and the tone being pure and- and you don't have to be a sophisticated music lover to hear that
You can? You can do a before and after Alexandrium she'll here in a singer, you'll see it in a dancer. You can even see it in a juggler, but I thought it might be useful to people who were in leadership position, and I created a company my first company nineteen, seventy eight calls of management and my What was I go into the office is sunset, I'm coming to the Alexander technique, studio I'll, go to your office and I'll watch you and I brought. Actually, I brought the sketch artists with me to sketch the flow of your movement right now, just new life right, there's, no iphones back the night. We took Polaroid pictures and then I'd give you were of the personal report on how they use himself, and then I give him a lesson. We walk through the things they did and given the experts,
of doing them with with more ease with more. If just feels, they know it right away so effortless. So that particular fellow was at high level management consulted and He was doing a seminar in Vevey Switzerland. For these senior leadership team of Digital Equipment corporation, and he invited me to come and he said, would you teach them what you taught me and maybe to send some juggling in some of the other things that I have been studying. so I went along. I no clue about business at all, but I share them. with them and I thought the meditation which was not, something anybody knew anything about then really at all and there's no real mindfulness movement of ours. What's he doing, but they liked it and the head of a charter,
you will say we want this young american guy on all our programmes around the world. So all of a sudden, I'm in my late twenties, I'm flying over the world leading before them mind and body seminar for people twice my age and now during that four people have my browsing, I'm alive I have more energy and passion and love for what I do now than ever before I felt amazingly blessed. But this these worlds in which you move and not just you, but just the idea that the people to whom Alexander technique is generally available and we're talking about elite perform earth and, in your case c, sweet occupants and executives, and people in business How does a regular person learn how to have more poisoned better posture, saving money, go I've Alexander lessons, go to the teachers teaching not all over the place right through all over the place. It's not that expensive and when you consider
I told you about anything like this. Why, spend my money on Alexander technique on touchy lessons on meditation lessons. If it doesn't work, you wasted money, does work is the best investment you ever made. So if there was something that could make you ten percent happier, ha ha ha ha. Or a hundred percent happier and if you didn't have back pain, which is often for most of us cause by how we use our cell, Its caused by the inordinate pressure we put on r r lower backs because round about show your head on average weighs about fifteen pounds if it's out of kilter, which it is if you're stressed and in that modified startle pattern. That's the constant pressure of fifteen pounds pressing down on your spine and then it's worse with any time. You do anything challenging or difficult. You pick up your son
you a brush your teeth, you drive your car, you do these everyday things, but their slowly straining you too, Then, some days, all my backers? Oh, I threw my back out, so This is why this is about an approach to what you do every day. Is it wanting? It is pleasurable and you're gonna have since the teachers everywhere. That's when I read the book right he's got body learning an introduction to the Alexander Technic, and it was my masters thesis, but you can't just read the book and now at right. You know you need light, there's people now because World is the way it is their people doing sky lessons in coaching and you can you can help it mindfulness in the flow of movement. So, yes, you can help people in coach them. If I can watch somebody, I can talk to them and I could help them, but look I trained for three years full time,
Alexander Technic teacher than I did two years of an internship to learn, to get my balance and my nervous system. Harmonised enough that if I put my hands on somebody, it's gonna give them this uplifting integrating stimulus. So you don't use them want to miss that part of the third stage and more of our common Patient is on the way after this, so you just woke up your phone is lighting up with headlines and push notification The text from your mom saying: how do I click this? Ok, maybe that's just me, but if you want to get up to speed, check out the new podcast from ABC News story, he later Lee. The ground was shaking I'm bride milking and every morning we're gonna. Take you to the stories that matter with fast fresh in silo, rubber, Mahler, Michael Cohen, calling all in twenty minutes start here, listen for free and apple podcast, or your favorite podcast app No,
You have other areas of professional interest of and correct me if I'm wrong, but you ve written and spoken quite a bit about creativity, yes and- and I believe you incorporate mine Less into that, yes, my right of other, yes, you are so actually something we have not discussed much impact. Yes, I'd love to hear you just hold for on how, though that interconnection works? Well, my as I explained earlier my my first awareness was of the importance of awareness And TAT was the fuel or the. the space in which everything could be created, and we just up everything Because some tat, the word awareness- is tricky because we talk about drug awareness or mental alpha. We only area where not just mean knowing that a thing is that thing who's up whatever, but when you talk about, where does your time? But the fact that the lights are on for us internally that we have consciousness?
We know anything at all that we experience everything. Yes, yes, that that that's my fascination with the source of awareness, and how to be aligned with that source of awareness is the great mystery. It's a great is the great most wonderful, MR so we know that we know stuff. In other words, I know I see you yes, but I dont know I can't find what is knowing I can look. I can look what's What is knowing the sound of your voice? What is knowing the the light on your visit right now, when I can't find it- and this was the eye who's, the knowers who's, the I even looking for than our film, and so it is. This is a real rapid hold a go down. Well, when western you and your conversation with Mark Epstein. I love when he said he was talking about his father.
As a physician had brain cancer and Mark said? Ok, I gotta try to get through my dad, whose scientific materialist this notion of consciousness just cause I'll feel bad. If I don't have the tibetan book of the dead, I gotta get ready for this journey. So Mark said: let s call it my dad, I kind of apologizes look. You know that part of you that you just relate to as yourself. You ve always known that hasn't change. If you think about your early memory, was there when you were thirty area, His memory there it now is our last time I saw you that sense of the one constant, because we Our thoughts are changing, our motions are changing. The body is clearly changing so this, but the sense I am is there's a continuity self Mark said to his dad, so the advice that
is given, as as one makes, this transition is, as you feel yourself going right. That out ride out on that that street? Well, don't we to your writing out. We wanna ride that stream. That is the stream, so all streams tributaries of from that stream, so that that was my life, my first interest, and then it appears that somehow out of that, we give rise to the ten thousand things too
phenomena of what we call creation so we're interested creation. It's gonna, naturally interested in creativity, oh two out of whatever the sort of consciousness is everything's coming out of it. I mean that's a metaphysical Well, I'm not claiming it I'm curious about an ominous glory and I'm I'm just the ok. So I'm in continue to explore all of this, and so it seemed to me going act to the world being crazy as it was then as it is now, and helping people have better conversations, come up with better solutions that seem to be a very practical way to take all this study of consciousness and and and self awareness and shifted into helping people.
With real issues, and so I start to study creative thinking and yeah, how do you generate more ideas and less time and make better connections between those idea? What's the research on that there's a lot of data torrents work at stamp, it's been burgeoning in the last forty years since I started this, but I was lucky enough to meet and work with very closely some of the people who are pioneers in this. In this fight the guy I was travelling around teaching that mind body seminar with was one of the big pioneer he invented mine mapping, method for generating organizing ideas that integrates the artistic. An imaginative part of your mind with the logical and analytical part of your mind, and we, this too these corporate executives and help them used to write their strategic plan. And they said that's amazing, we're doing this in half the time and it was so much more fun and we had better ideas. So this this is,
so called reality test a theoretical this is in companies, see if we can really help people be more creative and in dealing with these these solution, so I more and more was ass to teach people how to mine map how to think creatively at a generate more ideas. To this day. People still call me up and say: how can you help us think out of the box, so in those in those fashions, I used a reference Leonardo Da Vinci. My grandmother was an italian painter, and she told me about Leonardo when I was very young and he became one of my heroes along with Superman and I remember when I realized that super.
There was only a comic book character, but Leonardo is real, so it is nineteen. Ninety four, and I was speaking as Ex be in New York, at the Plaza hotel to young President's organization, global group of company presidents and speaking to them about creativity and innovation, and I found out that there are holding one of their elite premier events. They call them. Universities. in Florence, which is my favorite city. I really wanted to get invited. So fellow comes up to be says: if we were invite your flowers, what would you do, then? We want something really special so In the moment, I made up about how to think like Leonardo Da Vinci. he says. Can you really do that and I said sure so I had six months to make this baby up and
this really notoriously tough crowd you when you speak let me finally spoken to group like this, where they re you on a scale want to ten. If you get below a eight, you never get invited back and if you get above a nine year in the in crowd and you get to speak to them all over the world. I would just you, then they they don't they don't they just look at you with a dead pant face their arms or folders like prove. It show me what you got. It's a tough, tough, but the best once you get through to them. Vital I mean I literally went till the enormous birthplace I went to the place he died. I literally walked in his footsteps. I read his note books over and over again, I meditated in front of his works of art. Start having dreams and from these dreams, I came up of these seven principles for thinking like Leonardo Da Vinci, which I delivered in Florence and
Is pretty funny brief? I sent in Britain little paper on the seven principles for thinking like Leonardo and I also sent to my biography, so the person could introduce me the person introducing me confuse the two documents. Ladies and gentlemen, members and guest here, the young presence organization. We ve had many extraordinary resources, but never have. I had the privilege and not pleasure, of introducing someone with as you may like this anatomist architect, botanist city, planner, designer engineer pages, Golfer, Michael you anyway, that debt led to a book that actually carefully came out twenty years called how to think- like Leonardo Da Vinci, seven steps, the genius every day they promised Well, all I can say is my favorite hurt. I still haven't people of the world
Some twenty five languages and it's really struck a chord with people, but the favourite think somebody said is this book gave me everything. I always wanted to teach my children, but didn't have the words to say has what what if you had the promises is, is can be delivered only because I readily enormous notebooks over and over again- and I put myself in the mine, said that question was what are you trying to teach us and it gives actual advice to his students on how to be more creative. He tell you tell them what to do so. What I did was just translate: listen to contemporary language and then
because I'm a leading workshops and seminars for many many years I made up exercise would bring the principle to life. How, if at all, do you think meditation helps with creativity weed? I asked I asked Richie Davidson prevalent prominent Neuro, yet I did get reviews twice guest on the show, but by the way no one thought my cousin about there being it mister, Bennet, school and donors meditation. When I, when I came back, I moved to Cambridge Massachuset and I suggest Harvard Square and this friend mine, Red Margo and whose physician brought me over to her and there's this guy Richie Davidson there, and I think Dan Goldman was there too, and they put electrodes my brain and asked me to Meditate- I don't know if they still have that the data from that.
Early. But I asked if I were interviewed Richie for one of my previous books about the relationship between meditation and creativity, because I just of course intuitively instantly assume will allow, but I liked it your back it up. So I figured let's reach out to rich and see what he says. He says it: researchers, You're still pretty early, it's not all that clear Cosette there too busy studying the effort. the imitation for helping cardiovascular, cardiovascular disease and anti and anxiety, and so I think you'll get around more and more to to creativity. But if you, if you study great creative break, through their similar to enlightenment experiences. They don't happen in the office
they don't happen in the lab or on the computer. They have I've ever had any even just leave aside great genius is just ordinary people. I asked this question two groups around the world are so where are you physically located when you get your best ideas and where you mustn't walking walking for walking it's in the shower. The bath lot has driving my car. Some people say it so when I'm done at the gym, also meditating and meditate. Yes- huge nobody ever says. I get my best ideas in the office there all times when we Our usual by ourselves, so we don't have the fear of embarrassment of thinking, are saying something. That's outside of the norm and they're all activities that shift the brain from.
A more active beta state which were in it workin conversing with other people to allow for a fate estate, so slower brainwave. so what basically were relaxed and whereby ourselves well you ass? You can see why ice. I naturally have the sense that meditation is I need training is a yes or whenever it that's, what we know and and you read the sages and are all saying: oh you want to have the breakthrough idea. Meditate, I love the mean I've. I've been on meditate retreat I'm just as is soon army of ideas, and then I've gotten home and looked at my no books in there all or the ideas? So it's not a guarantee. It's just interesting Emmy. You will, I think, you'll get a lot of stuff that comes up like what you want, the chattering minds. Nose down it. Creativity, there's more room for creativity is no,
you don't know you might get Amelia ordered. Well, that's what makes a creative as you won't get the meal you ordered you'll, come up with a whole new recipe, a new flavors, yes, sometimes terrible recipe. Sometimes it may be, however, like whoever came up with her Duncan ha ha ha again. Are you hurt that? But we, You when you say in your own process, you get these ideas and they see my crazy ideas. but what we have we read about. Einstein's experience of his own ideas are Leonardo experiences of his ideas. Edison you go back and find a great mind. They all give you the same advice. So I, like you, I, like this- every meditation Tricia says start by aligning around a vertical axis, probably something to it than that of their tell you in time, China,
India. Every duration cobble lists, nobody says start by slumping or your tightening your jar, something it's universe tend to be universal discovery. Well, guess what the enlargement she tells his students wherever you go, carry Note book with you and when something occurs to you, write it down and don't worry about whether it makes sense or not Edison. Gives pretty much the same instruction to the people who work in his laboratory and be careful of premature organization. So another you. Look at that seemingly, inter not connected, crummy ideas, you ve, judge them and you ve dismiss them, and then you miss the petition. show of what may emerge as you play with them, and let them flowed again
are they still may ultimately not be a breakthrough idea? You probably have to come up with a thousand ideas to get a real breakthrough idea, but One idea is a product of the other nine hundred and ninety nine seemingly silly are irrelevant ideas, so the ability to to ride that uncertainty too become comfortable with the ambiguity of not knowing again meditation is training your whole being to be more receptive to that state, my view but antennas, but we We were filled a static and we're not getting good. Reception. Geniuses have cleared out the static and they're getting good reception one way think about meditation is I'll kill to the end of that.
I feel that there are a million other things when you talk to you about, but there were pretty much at a time. Let me finish by doing what I like to the opportunity to give every guest witches. I called the plug zone. Ah, pluck everything you ve ever done, gimme all books, that you want people to know by working environment, social media, the internets all so much. Thank you, Michael Guild, Dotcom De L B. Look for how to think. likely in our adventure, seven steps to genius every day. That's my best known book, my First book body learning an introduction to the Alexander technique: and my most recent book is called the art of connection seven relationship building skills, every leader needs now. Well, I feel I can be remiss violent winter. I don't even know what Europe can you give me. Can you give me the head the headline, the text that you take the view that one is so
teaching people how to think like Leonardo innovate, like Edison creativity, innovation, work with businesses round the world, and I dont just give a talk or seminar fly off clients, but me on retainer. I work with them over years I helped them right there, their plan, their vision, their mission, there their values and then navigate through how you really mean innovative culture and in promoting force that makes people love coming to work and love what they do and love who they serve and loved their team makes and their vendors did. My passions help part of creating a kind of place for people to work. So what is it? What I've notice and paying attention all along is getting the break through ideas. Actually, the easy part implementing them is the challenging part. That's why what the art of connection
because its error is the most important things I've learned about. How do you build relationships with yourself with others? That will help you actually navigate through the objections to change the resistance. People have to innovation and creativity, so it's it's the playbook food How do you really make this happen in the world where people aren't always so open to change and innovation? While I would recall that buckle while on everybody just do what I want her yet but that's one of the problems. That's the way, antics browser I've, just the prompt, yes, thank you. I love you happy writer, good government, so what is just one more yeah sure Azure vote for those of us, we all live in an interconnected world where we're in a corporation or
family or of some sort of non profit, we need to work collaboratively had so good. And given that a lot of people listen to this, I do have a meditations you're, really sick, if not a background only some curiosity. in it. What would you say from what you learned would be the most meditative need, while foresight, emotions are contagious for better or for worse to decide which want to catch and what you want spread and when you get that that your state is rippling out for better or worse, and when you get people becoming aware of that. Yet so I was
I have a client in New Jersey. They started by were mediating asbestos, and now they do risk management and engineering, the brilliant home in consulting great people. I've been on retired them for a couple years. I just lead their second as strategic planning retreat under my supervision, So I thought it was time to introduce a wellness programme for them, because a lot of their senior leaders were struggling with stress and various stress related elements. One him had heart attack and so were helping them have better healthier food and the ceo, whose just fabulous guy mediately said: let's get pay for Jim memberships and and and then the lesser
I told him meditation and the summit also about how the world has changed, and some would so exciting. Wonderful to me, so we have just heard two or three short meditation classes and just add I just a motive for five minutes. Just it feel get their toeing. The poor thing. So in the last morning I sat down, we were, do we do The end of these major everybody stands up and say what they're going to do exactly by when it will be accomplished. So it's real accountability. Ok, I'm gonna! Do this specifically here's? How measure that I did it and it will be done by this date.
These are all the things we all the creative fun stuff we've been working on it now: okay, let's figure out how this is really going to manifest, but just before you did that I thought I'll review meditation with them. So I sat down and I aim to be flowing in that stream all the time, but there's a special responsibility comes every now say: okay, I'm going to leave this class, so I was about to begin repeating the instructions for meditation, explain what I was going to do, but I didn't have to they all were quiet and there was a silent in the space. And I felt a sense of theirs in intelligence here that greater than the sum of the parts of the individual bodies in room- and I sense that is
it just so different than when I first taught meditation forty years ago. I dont think that would happen in a corporate, but people know that the Zeit Geiss has shifted and, with all of our difficult these there's more guys in the site, lovely great place to end it. Thank you very much really pressure. I pleasure you, ok, that does it for another edition of the ten percent happier pod cast. If you liked it, please take a minute to subscribe rate us also. If you want to suggest topics, you think we should cover or guests that we should bring in hit me up on twitter at Danby. Harris importantly, I want to thank the people who produce this project, Lauren Efron, Josh cohesion and the rest of the folks here, any BC who helped make this thing possible. We have tons of other projects. You can check them out at eighty senior pod casts doubt
I'll talk to you next Wednesday, there's not a person in America who hasn't been impact it in some way by the corona, I was pandemic, but it every community. There are pockets of people who were soon
every day. This is my last day of the cylinder stretch to drive off about photos from one of our Visa or America's essential workers, the people who are keeping moving. I turn into a home school mom and now in a new programmes. From eighty see news you gonna hear from damage. I she went back to my office and so unkind because he is not here, and I can assure you that our community has found faintly worrying. This is essentially inside the from the emergency room. The police cruiser to the Czech outline Yuki one. This pandemic sounds like the people putting themselves no one's way, there's always a risk. Brain is home to re. Kids are my husband or maybe errands, listen to the essentials inside the curve on Apple podcast, river, pod, costume.