The Tim Ferriss Show #329 Jason Fried — How to Live Life on Your Own Terms

Full podcast here.

  • Immune to dogma? Maybe it’s because I don’t really pay attention to a lot of things. Maybe I have different points of view because I haven’t heard the other ones. I haven’t let societi’s norms and the general point of view get into my head so I have to come up with my own ideas. I don’t want to be influenced that much. Deliberate, selective ignorance. (9:26) 

  • A lot of it is I don’t have much structure. I don’t really have routines. I don’t have goals. I just do what I feel is the right thing to do in any given situation. I have things I want to do but not goal posts along the way. (11:03) 

  • One of my favorite quotes: Comparison is the death of joy. (12:34)

  • To set a goal that is long term is setting a goal for who you are when you set it vs who you are when you get there. (12:52) 

  • For our company we don’t have KPIs, goals, etc. we don’t have those kinds of reasons for doing what we do every day. The reason we do what we do I because we enjoy it. The thing we are making for others we are also making for ourselves so we to make it better. (16:52)

  • Their [goals] all man-made. What if I tried to function without goals and just did the best work I can because isn’t that what I should be doing anyways? (21:47)

  • Instead of FOMO I think of it as JOMO: the joy of missing out. (31:13) 

  • Complexity has also become a sport. If you make it more complicated you are better at it. I think it’s the opposite. (33:47) 

  • One of the best lessons I’ve learned the past few years: I see people getting so wound up by what other people do or say. They are actually just being wound up by their reaction. You can only control your own reaction. (Stoicism) It’s how you allow it to affect you. (36:18) 

  • Tim: I came from a family of worriers. A high baseline of anxiety. Jason: I feel like I used to worry a lot. It’s a battle. I don’t worry about myself but I worry about my kid. (41:32) 

  • The problem with worrying is you go to the worst-case scenario. You ruminate on it. Negative visualization may help. Before I got into it I would worry a lot. What’s cool with negative visualization is it clears the worry out of the room. You worry about it and then you are done with it. Compared to consistent, low grade, always on worry. (42:33) 

  • The way I think about business today... I’m making the thing that I want and then finding people who want the same thing. (50:33)

  • The businesses I did when I was young paved the way to learn how to sell, market, promote, package, and charge for things. (50:58) 

  • The thing that deficient about the tech industry is that they don’t charge for anything. They give it away for free and deal with the negatives of that which we are seeing play out in the news now. (51:31) 

  • In college, I was doing website design freelance and I had a software business on the side selling software that organized my music collection. (57:38) 

  • I’d been selling stuff before but I had to do work for that. I had to get an inventory every time. What was different about the software thing is I could make this thing once. I could put it out in the world and a lot of people could pay me for it. In a sense, I could make money sleeping. (59:05) 

  • I can make this for myself. I can satisfy myself. Then the next step is to find other people like you. Versus trying to dominate an industry. I have no interest in dominating anything or anyone. I don’t know what our market share is I couldn’t care less. (1:01:02) 

  • I don’t let people offend me...it doesn’t matter. I don’t care. That’s just a reflection on another person’s ignorance or point of view. (1:06:40) 

  • It seems like you have an abhorrence for wasting time. What systems do you have in place to minimize time-wasting? Getting better at saying no. Be honest about the things you really want to do and things you really don’t want to do(1:08:58)

  • A partial description of my life is I try to avoid hassles. A hassle is something I don’t want to do in the future. Something that helps is not making commitments in advance....because it prevents me from exploring opportunities in the moment that I may be more interested in doing. I don’t know how I’m going to feel 6 months from now. (1:10:16) 

  • If you want to meet with Warren Buffett you have to ask the day before.. (1:14:59)

  • People will protect money and all sorts of things but won’t protect their attention and their time. (1:15:55) 

  • If you can’t communicate clearly you are probably communicating 3 or 4 times more frequently than you need to. That can be frustrating. (1:19:00) 

  • If I’m hiring a designer I want them to have a point of view...not just rely on data. (1:25:43) 

  • One of the things we don’t do and don’t believe in at all is these riddles and these bullshit test crap. It’s not the real stuff. (1:27:12) 

  • The things that are not taught In school is iteration. Iteration is everything outside of school. You do something and then you launch it and then you are on to making a better version of that thing pretty quickly. In school you do something, hand it in and then it’s done. You never get to revisit things. (1:37:49) 

  • To be a better writer read Tom Petty's lyrics... he has efficiency in his storytelling. Every word counts. There is no filler. (1:43:01) 

  • Great quote: In the hopes of reaching the moon men fail to see the flowers that blossom at their feet. (2:08:25)