Impact Theory with Tom Bilyeu

Impact Theory is a business and mindset-focused interview show that will teach anyone aspiring to greatness the secrets to success. The show is hosted by Tom Bilyeu - a serial entrepreneur and co-founder of the #2 Inc. 500 company Quest Nutrition and former host of the viral hit Youtube series Inside Quest (viewed over 100,000,000 times). Bilyeu is known for his passion and preparation. Always eager to truly learn from his guests, Bilyeu digs deep and brings the urgency of someone hungry to put what he’s learning to immediate use - making the show not only entertaining and energetic, but also hyper-useful.
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Impact Theory with Tom Bilyeu





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Aug 25, 2020

Olympian Devon Harris, an original member of the 1988 Jamaican bobsled team, always believed that a positive, “Keep on Pushing” attitude would take him farther than anger or a focus on injustice. On this episode of Impact Theory with Tom Bilyeu, Devon Harris explains exactly what he means by his mantra, “Keep on Pushing”. He talks about his life growing up in Kingston, the lessons he learned from his grandmother, the reasons why he is so passionate about education, and the power of dreams and visualization.

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A positive attitude will carry you farther than a heart filled with rage at injustice [0:34]

Devon explains how he saw Olympians as average people with extraordinary dreams [2:00]

Devon’s grandmother’s greatest ambition for him was that he would learn to read [4:23]

You can’t allow yourself to settle [5:30]

Devon explains what it means to have a “Keep on Pushing” attitude [6:59]

When Devon competes he is a totally different person [8:02]

Devon advocates living a fulfilled life, a rounded life but he is also absolutely driven [10:41]

Devon talks about how important his family is to him [14:27]

Dreaming is the starting point of all achievement [18:09]

Education gives you confidence, opens doors, and lets you see opportunities [19:27]

Devon explains what it means to walk your own path [21:29]

Why you have to create a new story that you become a character in [22:37]

Devon talks about how he deals with fear [25:03]

Devon has used visualization before he knew what visualization was [28:02]

You can’t quit on the goal, but you sometimes have to quit on the strategy [31:09]

Devon describes the core values he tries to instill in his kids [32:59]




“You can’t allow yourself to settle...Stepping out of the environment that you find yourself in to go get that thing across the street that looks so much better, to get a much better life, it’s difficult because you feel so out of place. You feel, almost, not-so-worthy. And you have to convince yourself that you deserve this.” [5:45]


“Walk your own path.” [21:32]


“I have no idea how I’m going to do it. But I just have to.” [22:59]








Aug 20, 2020

Social psychologist Jonathan Haidt researches moral psychology to help us understand ourselves and our world better. He is an expert on how we create webs of meaning that allow us to speak a common language, build institutions, and create functioning societies. And right now we may need his voice more than ever, as our webs of meaning seem to be in conflict with each other or slowly disintegrating. On this episode of Conversations with Tom Bilyeu, Jonathan Haidt explains why we need to lead with empathy, how to persuade people who have staked out very different positions from yours, and how to invite disconfirming evidence into your life.

This episode is brought to you by:

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Why are we 90% chimps and 10% bees? [2:01]

Jonathan suggests a definition of morality [4:14]

Jonathan and Tom discuss religion and spiritual, mind-opening experiences [5:53]

Jonathan explains the “hive switch”, the group experience of religion and morality [11:27]

Jonathan and Tom discuss the power of connection and group interaction [16:34]

Jonathan talks about the problems with social media and how they developed [20:18]

What makes some webs of meaning so powerful that they spread so fast? [27:57]

Jonathan and Tom ask to what extent political affiliation is genetic [33:29]

Jonathan discusses the disturbing trend towards conformity in political thought [37:18]

Jonathan and Tom discuss changing American attitudes towards race [

Jonathan talks about how hard it is to lead with empathy [46:52]

Jonathan advocates trying many approaches to dealing with problems like racism [50:30]

How do we constructively discuss difficult topics? [54:51]

Why we have to get people to focus on similarities [59:02]

Jonathan discusses his experience with psychedelics [1:03:52]

How to invite disconfirming evidence into your life--How do you know you’re right? [1:10:44]

We need to find a way to speak a common language in our post-Babel Age [1:16:27]










“Tao Te Ching” Lao Tzu

“Tao of Jeet Kune Do”, Bruce Lee

“Dancing in the Streets: A History of Collective Joy”, Barbara Ehrenreich

“Keeping Together in Time”, William McNeill

“Long Walk to Freedom”, Nelson Mandela


Emile Durkheim is mentioned often: 

Aug 18, 2020

It’s often hard to stay motivated, but right now it’s particularly difficult for a lot of people to keep their focus. On this episode of Impact Theory, Tom Bilyeu directly answers questions from Moms and Dads, from artists, business owners and recent graduates. He explains how to build and maintain motivation, why boredom can be a tool you use to achieve greatness, how to deal with anxiety, how to balance the needs of your family and your career, and why you need absolute clarity on your goals to be a good leader.

This episode is brought to you by:

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Motivation comes in waves, so you need to remember what got you excited at first [0:47]

Be honest with yourself about what you really want [3:02]

Tom gives advice to artists trying to survive through the lockdown [6:01]

Boredom kills most people’s dreams, but you can use boredom to achieve greatness [8:31]

Tom discusses meditation, why he meditates, and how it affects him biologically [10:38]

Tom talks about what it really means to be a CEO and how to lead people [15:33]

Tom explains why you need an optimistic, solution-oriented mindset [17:59]

Why you need to have absolute clarity on your goals [20:54]

Why you need to go out and fail, learn from it, and still go all in next time [26:11]

Tom discusses anxiety and how to deal with it [29:15]

How to make the most of the lockdown [30:05]




“You don’t find motivation, you build motivation.” [4:11]


“Greatness is about doing the things that are tragically boring. And that you have to repeat over and over and over to get better at them, in a deliberate way.” [7:01]


“If a win to you is being the greatest Dad and husband of all time, then be the greatest Dad and husband of all time! And if your number two priority is building your business, then it’s in second place. And it’s gonna get what it can get.” [24:54]








Aug 13, 2020

Dr. Jennifer Haythe has worked through the center of the COVID-19 pandemic in New York City, and dealt with all of the medical, emotional and psychological consequences of that crisis. On this episode of Health Theory with Tom Bilyeu, Jennifer Haythe discusses the immediate situation regarding the coronavirus, and also the long-term effects of the disease. Then, she and Tom get into a discussion about a topic that is on a lot of people’s minds as a result of COVID-19. They talk about death itself, how our culture doesn’t deal with it well, and what we need to do to make the dying process more humane.

This episode is brought to you by:

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[0:00] Intro: Tom explains why this is going to be a great episode and introduces Jennifer.

[1:09] COVID-19 Isn’t Over: Jennifer describes the experience of dealing with COVID-19 in New York City hospitals, and talks about what will be required to achieve herd immunity.

[8:39] COVID-19 Long Term: Jennifer explains why COVID-19 is so scary, how it damages so many different organs, and also why she is hopeful for those who recover.

[13:37] Protect Your Health: Jennifer details the steps people can take to keep themselves healthy, reduce their preexisting conditions, and improve their immune systems.

[21:39] Face Death: Jennifer discusses American’s unwillingness to face the reality of death, and why sometimes extraordinary measures at the end of life are unnecessary to the point of being unethical.

[29:49] Make Death Better: We project too many of our own feelings onto the dying, and if we want the dying process to be more humane we need to really learn to listen to patients.

[34:41] Culture & Death: Tom and Jennifer discuss the experience of seeing a dead body and why grief happens in such different ways, even to the same person.







Aug 11, 2020

Neuroscientist Moriel Zelikowsky studies the neural mechanisms underlying stress, fear, and social behavior. On this episode of Impact Theory with Tom Bilyeu, she discusses her own research into how extreme social isolation affects mice and humans. She talks about what drew her to the science of emotions, why fear is adaptive, and presents some surprising reasons to question the general advice that PTSD sufferers should join support groups.

This episode is brought to you by:



Moriel discusses what drew her to the science of emotions [0:35]

Moriel right now is working on social isolation and how it affects the brain [3:39]

Violence happens often after social isolation in mice [6:33]

Fear becomes much more persistent after isolation [7:57]

Social isolation hijacks systems that normally produce positive results [12:01]

For mice, two weeks of social isolation is long enough to cause severe consequences [14:46]

To what degree does social media mitigate or exacerbate social isolation? [16:08]

Moriel discusses the most recent research on fear and where it’s located in the brain [18:18]

Moriel explains why fear is adaptive and helpful [20:25]

Moriel details how general anxiety disorder builds on itself [24:05]

The most common therapy for PTSD is some form of exposure therapy [26:15]

Moriel describes an experiment on PTSD with truly surprising results [28:27]




“Everywhere you look, you can see that fear would be adaptive.” [21:16]








Aug 6, 2020

Evolutionary theorist and “professor in exile” Bret Weinstein was thrust into the midst of America’s culture wars in 2017 while teaching at Evergreen State College. Since then he has emerged as one of the leaders of the Intellectual Dark Web. He is very aware of the severe divisions plaguing our society, and understands the energy behind those divisions. On this episode of Conversations with Tom Bilyeu, Bret Weinstein advocates learning to see both individual responsibility and collective responsibility simultaneously. He discusses the Unity 2020 platform, shares some insight on Andrew Yang’s presidency, and talks about what we need to do now to avoid civil war, environmental destruction, and general moral failure.

This episode is brought to you by:

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You are living in your own simulation, which is your biggest asset and your biggest liability [2:11]

Fights, whether marital or societal, are rarely only about the explicit content [3:18]

Those who see the hazard clearly don’t understand where the energy is coming from [7:26]

Bret describes rent-seeking behavior and how it is impossible to eliminate it entirely [13:25]

Bret and Tom discuss learned helplessness and why it’s such a bad idea [18:31]

Bret describes the collective responsibility we have as human beings [25:03]

Tom compares liberals and conservatives to visionaries and integrationists [28:35]

Radical change sucks, but may be necessary, and personal responsibility is paramount [33:10]

Tom and Bret discuss the severe divisions in current American society [36:28]

Bret describes the Unity 2020 plan and why we need to remove influence peddling [44:22]

Tom explains why he was so interested in Andrew Yang [45:54]

Bret talks about what you can learn from Andrew Yang’s presidency [49:41]

A groundswell of support is more important than naming a ticket for Unity 2020 [54:04]

Tom talks about the intoxication of rage and cognitive bias [1:00:06]

We are the ones we have been waiting for [1:04:25]

Tom and Bret discuss the leaders we need to have and how to find them [1:06:21]

Bret talks about the desire to remain unenlightened [1:14:18]

The US tries to step out of the normal evolutionary current and do something different [1:20:01]

Tom and Bret discuss the problem with attacking the scientific method itself [1:22:49]

Our education system has screwed people up so badly that they don’t want to learn [1:29:53]

Natural selection has turned sex for humans into a bonding mechanism [1:36:05]

Tom discusses Thomas Sowell and the Black Lives Matter movement [1:46:26]

Bret discusses the likelihood of Donald Trump being reelected [1:50:41]

Bret explains why schools don’t get fixed [1:53:22]







Aug 4, 2020

CEO Daymond John turned a forty dollar budget into the 6 billion dollar FUBU clothing empire. This is a man who grew up in Hollis, Queens, who didn’t see anyone who he could call a role model in the world of fashion, and who was told he would never amount to anything. So when he says, “If I could do it, you can do it”, he knows what he’s talking about. On this episode of Impact Theory with Tom Bilyeu, Daymond John shares the practical advice and no-nonsense wisdom that has made him incredibly successful. He discusses the three critical steps to negotiation, advises entrepreneurs to take what he calls “affordable steps”, and strongly advocates constantly seeking out new mentors.

This episode is brought to you by:



Daymond explains that no one is going to save you or even get you off the couch [1:23]

Daymond suggests that you write your own obituary and really take inventory [3:12]

Daymond shares the difficulties he has overcome in his own life [5:59]

Daymond’s mother always disciplined him and pushed him to own his own destiny [8:31]

Daymond knew what he didn’t want out of life, so he challenged himself [14:36]

Daymond strongly advocates constantly finding new mentors [18:11]

Daymond suggests knowing who you truly are before getting married [22:04]

Daymond describes the methods his mother used to educate herself [22:56]

Daymond suggests young people become financially literate and learning coding [25:03]

Daymond strongly advocates that people take what he calls “affordable steps” [26:55]

Entrepreneurship was hard for Daymond because he didn’t see black people in that role [30:43]

Daymond describes the traits he seeks in employees [35:35]

Daymond breaks down how negotiation works [37:32]

Daymond explains what you should do if you want to work with someone like him [40:25] 

The key to negotiation is to figure out what’s in it for the other person [42:58]

The final part of negotiation is nurturing the relationship [45:10]

You need to have empathy for everyone you are negotiating with [47:11]




“I’ve met people that are more successful than me, that had it harder than me.” [8:02]


“I’m in charge of my own destiny.” [12:18]


“When I see really, truly successful entrepreneurs, they failed six or seven or eight times.” [30:20]








Jul 30, 2020

Dr. Caroline Leaf is a powerhouse researcher dedicated to unlocking the human mind’s untapped potential. And that potential looks to be almost limitless. On this episode of Health Theory with Tom Bilyeu, Caroline Leaf explains the biological processes that constitute thoughts, feelings and choices, emphasizes the importance of becoming more aware, and describes the latest brain research, including exciting findings about how to change your biological age through mind management.

You can pre-order Dr. Leaf's new book here:

This episode is brought to you by:
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[1:06] Form Your Identity: Caroline explains why your identity is so important, and how to consolidate and strengthen it.

[6:48] Think, Feel, Choose: Caroline describes the biological processes that underlie making choices and building identity.

[14:43] The Science of Thought: Caroline uses the analogy of ocean waves to explain how the brain functions.

[23:43] How to Become Aware: Awareness is strongly linked to empathy, and requires you to stand back and observe your own choices and reactions.

[28:45] 5 Steps for Mind Management: Even if you are not conscious of it, and even if you don’t remember it, your choices and habits will change your brain on a physical level.

[44:03] The Latest Researcher: You can change your biological age by controlling your brain functions.


Follow Dr. Leaf:









Jul 28, 2020

Recently Success Magazine honored it’s “New Thought Leaders”, a group of influencers who can lead you to your brightest future. This episode of Impact Theory with Tom Bilyeu features nine of the other leaders on that list: Gabby Bernstein, Lewis Howes, Brendon Burchard, Trent Shelton, Rachel Hollis, Gary Vaynerchuk, Tim Ferriss, Jay Shetty, and Marie Forleo. They discuss their most heartbreaking losses, their most profound failures, and their toughest battles. And of course, they explain how they overcame their struggles. Find out how to deal with even severe mental illness, what the one belief is that unlocks all other useful beliefs, some surprising secrets to achieving truly extraordinary things, and why sometimes the most powerful thing you can say is, “I need help.”

This episode is brought to you by:



Gabby Bernstein shares why even in deep depression she celebrated good things [1:20]

Gabby and Tom discuss depression, medication, and spirituality [3:34]

Lewis Howes explains that his ambition came from the need to be accepted [5:09]

Brendon Burchard says his community keeps him going and pushes him forward [7:54]

Trent Shelton’s only real fear is to succeed at the wrong things [11:20]

You’ll never win the war until you face reality head on [13:13]

Rachel Hollis shares the story of his brother’s suicide [14:44]

Gary Vaynerchuk is fully in love everyone he encounters, including himself [21:13]

Tim Ferriss explains why you should set really low expectations [24:27]

Tim defines “writer’s block” as self-imposed performance anxiety [27:00]

Jay Shetty explains how to find your passion and fix your relationships [28:48]

Marie Forleo shares the one belief that unlocks all the other important beliefs [33:37]




“Feeling isolated as a child, to my mind, is the scariest thing because that leads to depression.” [6:10]


“You’ll never win your war by running from your battles.” [13:24]


“Beliefs are a choice, and every choice can be changed.” [34:20]




Gabby Bernstein:

Lewis Howes: 

Tom’s appearance on Lewis Howes:

Brendon Burchard:

Trent Shelton:

Rachel Hollis:

Gary Vaynerchuk:

Tim Ferriss:

Jay Shetty:

Marie Forleo:

Jul 23, 2020

Righteous indignation is personally intoxicating, culturally powerful and incredibly motivating. It also doesn’t necessarily align with reality, as shown by the fact that opposite sides of many issues are often equally righteous and equally angry. So how do we move past righteous indignation to look at problems like racism in terms of realistic solutions and honest tradeoffs? On this episode of Conversations with Tom, the brilliant young intellectual Coleman Hughes discusses the ways that our national debate about race has gone far off the rails. He also points out real-world solutions to some smaller problems that have actually worked, and strongly advocates that we adopt a more facts-based mindset on the bigger issues.

This episode is brought to you by:

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Coleman and Tom discuss music and the music industry [0:36]

Coleman describes the experience of taking online classes [2:24]

Tom and Coleman discuss social distancing, COVID-19 and authority [5:04]

Coleman talks about why he would prefer Obama to be president currently [9:48]

Coleman discusses the current state of racial conversations [18:00]

Coleman explains why he is willing to wade into the debates about race [22:58]

Almost anyone who has had a hard life and become successful doesn’t play victim [29:10]

Coleman says the cultural zeitgeist on race is getting things deeply wrong [35:45]

Coleman asks why people need to feel that they are victims of racism [38:29]

One of the worst things about growing up poor is not having actual role models [47:17]

What if creating wealth is more important than political power? [51:17]

Righteous indignation feels incredible, but it cannot be trusted [59:48]

Coleman explains why he actually favors dismantling police over defunding police [1:04:41]

Coleman describes ways to get police out of certain work while still reducing crime [1:12:26]

Coleman and Tom discuss whether there is a culture of murder [1:17:50]

How are we going to improve the quality of police forces? [1:23:26]

Coleman explains why sometimes he has answers, and other times he doesn’t [1:28:29]

Coleman argues against the connection between capitalism and racism [1:34:26]

Why do so many people take the same side on wildly disparate issues? [1:44:07]

Some people just aren’t swayed by logic, so what should be done? [1:50:49]

Coleman’s approach to music is completely intuitive [1:55:15]








Jul 21, 2020

NASCAR Champion Kurt Busch knows a thing or two about winning. The longest-tenured active driver in the Cup Series has not only won, but won consistently in just about every kind of race. On this Episode of Impact Theory with Tom Bilyeu, Kurt Busch breaks down exactly what constitutes a champion’s mindset. He explains the importance of preparation, describes how to build the courage necessary to take insane risks, and talks about how important honesty and clarity are. He also discusses the need to be incredibly competitive, and shares his story of how he learned to harness his own aggressiveness, drive and desire. 

This episode is brought to you by:



What does it take to win consistently? [2:33]

What does pushing hard really look like? [3:38]

Tom and Kurt discuss how important an obsessive desire to succeed is [4:28]

Kurt credits his parent’s blue-collar upbringing for his mindset [7:21]

Courage, inclination, intuition and luck are the ingredients to becoming a great driver [9:15]

Kurt talks about how preparation leads to courage [11:50]

You are only as good as the people you surround yourself with [14:57]

Kurt says that he still loves racing, and that’s why he keeps doing it [15:56]

Kurt wears his emotions on his sleeve, and it led to a rocky relationship with the media [18:15]

Kurt tells the story of how he turned an independent team to a contender [22:19]

Honesty, taking responsibility and clarity are key for leadership [24:24]

Kurt and Tom discuss the need for competitiveness and aggression [26:32]

Kurt explains how he deals with losses and failure [31:31]

What’s the next phase for Kurt’s life? [33:02]

Kurt shares the impact he wants to have on the world [35:35]




“You’re only as good as the people you surround yourself with.” [15:53]


“Each day is an opportunity to win something.” [3:04]


“I can tell you more vividly and in detail about the losses than some of the wins.” [31:39]








Jul 16, 2020

After being diagnosed with Progressive Multiple Sclerosis, Terry Wahls depended on a tilt-recline wheelchair for four years. However, she realized that she could improve her health on a cellular level by focusing on lifestyle and diet. Her incredible story of recovery is really a story of creating health and vitality, instead of focusing on treating the symptoms of disease. On this episode of Health Theory with Tom Bilyeu, Dr. Terry Wahls explains how a focus on cellular health can lead to extraordinary outcomes, even for people struggling with severe chronic illness.

This episode is brought to you by:

Butcher Box: Go to to reserve your spot on their waitlist. You’ll get an email when they’re ready to take your order. 

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[0:00] Fight for Your Life: Terry shares the story of how she responded to her diagnosis of Progressive MS.

[7:49] Focus on Mitochondria: Terry describes the importance of mitochondria and talks about why she focused on them.

[18:28] How to Create Health: Drugs treat symptoms but they do not create health. Terry shares stories of transformation due to diet and lifestyle changes.

[23:41] Cytokines 101: Terry explains how wear and tear is repaired in cells, and why the process can become overactive, leading to inflammation.

[27:48] Be Your Own Case Study: Why you should definitely pay attention to research, but you still have to figure out what works for you.

[31:36] Eat These Foods: Terry defines a good diet, and talks about which foods to add to your diet and which to eliminate.








Jul 14, 2020

Founder of both and, and now CEO of Walmart eCommerce, Marc Lore has had a success streak that is astonishing by any standard. Fortunately for everyone else, he is more than happy to share the habits, mindset and traits that have allowed him to become so accomplished. On this episode of Impact Theory with Tom Bilyeu, serial entrepreneur and multi-billionaire Marc Lore explains how to raise capital when you are just starting out, how to hire and lead employees, and how to make progress towards your goals no matter what you are right now.

This episode is brought to you by: 

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Marc credits his attitude of “billions or body bags” with his success [2:26]

Tom and Marc discuss having your back against the wall and being aggressive [5:16]

Marc hires self-motivated people and then makes sure he doesn’t micromanage them [7:55]

Marc looks for traits instead of experience for start-up companies [8:58]

Never ask a question in an interview that someone could have prepared for [10:52]

People who went to really good schools have a hard time taking risk [14:15]

Marc shares the story of applying to a business school he had almost no chance at [15:48]

Marc never accepts that something is impossible unless it literally has a 0% probability [18:48]

Marc believes that you are born and raised with some traits, but most can be developed [20:19]

Marc focuses on caring, kindness and empathy when raising his kids [22:27]

When Marc was a kid he was quite entrepreneurial, and got into stocks at 10 years old [23:26]

Marc talks about why his first investors were willing to take a risk on him [26:21]

Tom and Marc discuss how to help someone build desire [27:48]

Marc explains how he deals with doubters [31:04]

Great execution is better than great ideas [33:35]

The way to deal with failure is not to dwell on it, but be objective about progress [35:49]

People want to be understood, and empathy is the most important leadership quality [37:23]

Entrepreneurs should be thinking about vision, capital and people over 80% of the time [39:18]

For core values to be core, there have to be 3 or less [41:29]

Marc shows how he raised money in the beginning [43:18]

Marc shares the impact he wants to have on the world [46:23]




“I’m not gonna accept that it can’t be done unless somebody proves that it’s a zero probability...And it’s typically the stuff that’s really close to zero--nobody else is touching--that’s where the big opportunities are.”  [18:50]

“Every time somebody says something can’t be done, there’s also a part of me that gets a little bit excited.” [32:13]

“Today’s today. What’s the biggest step you can take today, towards your vision? How do you make the most progress towards the vision, today?” [35:10]





Jul 9, 2020

Sociologist and physician Nicholas Christakis, named one of the 100 most influential people in the world by Time Magazine, is on the forefront of research into human social networks and the evolutionary and biosocial determinants of behavior, emotions and health. In this conversation with host Tom Bilyeu, the best-selling author of “Blueprint: The Evolutionary Origins of a Good Society” discusses everything from grieving elephants to colonies on Mars and future sex robots. He explains why good human impulses are eventually more powerful than antagonism and division, describes experiments where interaction with artificial intelligence improves peoples’ behavior towards each other, and expresses hopeful optimism about our ability to constantly expand the moral sphere and upgrade the social contract.

This episode is brought to you by:

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Why are we cultural animals in the first place? What is the capacity for culture? [1:00]

Nicholas advocates that there is more that unites humanity than there is that divides us [4:43]

People don’t really think that their life experience is dictated by their group membership [7:12]

When travelling, at first people seem so different, but soon it’s clear how similar we are [9:38]

Nicholas discusses the ability of elephants to feel grief, and why faces are different [13:35]

Elephants will teach each other how to raid human crops [18:11]

Nicholas explains the power of grief, and the way it is so different from other emotions [20:26]

Nicholas talks about the rituals surrounding grief, and how they reconnect people [24:20]

Nicholas uses whaling to describe how the human moral sphere has expanded [28:28]

Nicholas shares stories of being a hospice doctor [30:33]

Nicholas talks about how important active listening is, especially as a hospice doctor [37:49]

Nicholas explains how to talk to someone who is dying [41:55]

Nicholas then explains the basic principles on how to break bad news [46:21]

Nicholas discusses colonizing Mars and why he thinks it is inevitable [49:43]

Nicholas and Tom discuss Shackleton and shipwrecks [53:11]

How does artificial intelligence change the way humans interact with each other? [56:43]

Nicholas talks about sex robots, and how we may need a new social contract [1:01:15]

How will we program AI, and how will it affect human society? [1:04:27]

Nicholas describes an experiment where robots encouraged human sociality [1:13:47]







Jul 7, 2020

We live in a culture that tells us that some emotions are bad. Unfortunately, these same “bad” emotions are unavoidable for anyone aiming to live a meaningful life. As a result, many of us spend much of our lives in conflict with our own emotions, stuck in self-narratives that no longer serve us. Thankfully, on this episode of Impact Theory with Tom Bilyeu, Harvard Psychologist Susan David shows us a way out of this self-destructive internal conflict. She explains how to use your “negative” emotions to connect with your core values (which you can learn more about by taking this quiz here: ). She also discusses the dangers of focusing on being right, the power of self-compassion and importance of emotional agility.

This episode is brought to you by:

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Emotions are data but they are not directives [1:33]

How we approach our thoughts, emotions and stories determines our quality of life [3:48]

What do you do when you realize the stories you tell yourself no longer serve you? [6:26]

Our culture tells us some emotions are bad, so we get in conflict with our emotions [11:50]

Only dead people never feel stress, anger, agitation or fear [14:15]

How do you uncover what your emotions are really trying to tell you? [17:35]

Technology has outstripped our ability to thrive [20:32]

Susan explains how to understand your emotions in a more specific way [22:53]

Our minds can convince us that we are right, even if it destroys our relationships [28:04]

Susan describes the process of recognizing our emotions and stories for what they are [31:39]

Even if the gods tell you that you’re right, you still have to decide who you want to be [33:46]

Being seen and belonging are core human needs [36:35]

Tom and Susan discuss the “tyranny of positivity” [38:30]

Success is living a life concordant with your values [41:43]

Susan shares the impact she wants to have on the world [47:08]




“Some of our stories were written on mental chalkboards at age 3.” [5:53]


“Our thoughts, our emotions and our stories aren’t good or bad. They just are.” [10:53]


“Discomfort is the price of ambition to a meaningful life.” [14:43]








Jul 2, 2020

You should eat more protein, and yes, that means red meat. This statement might surprise some audiences, but it is based on the fundamentally sound science that high muscle strength is independently associated with lower all cause mortality. Dr. Gabrielle Lyon has been on the forefront of “muscle-centric medicine” for years, and here’s what really is surprising. She became obsessed with the concept because of her work with palliative care, dementia and geriatrics. On this episode of Health Theory with Tom Bilyeu, Gabrielle Lyon explains why muscle should be viewed as a vital organ which protects against everything from Alzheimer’s to COVID-19. She discusses the optimal high-protein diet, strongly advocates that everyone engage in resistance training, and explains why people should focus on gaining muscle instead of focusing on losing fat.

Check out Gabrielle's online course to learn more:

This episode is brought to you by:

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Gabrielle explains what “muscle-centric medicine” is [1:09]

Why you should focus on building muscle instead of focusing on losing fat [2:14]

Gabrielle explains the function of muscle as an organ [5:14]

The more muscle you have, the more likely you are to live [8:57]

Gabrielle explains why she prioritizes changing diet versus changing exercise patterns [12:19]

Eat high quality protein, which means eating animal protein [15:32]

Gabrielle discusses the importance of getting your first meal right [22:34]

Gabrielle explains why she eats carbohydrates later in the day [25:00]

Gabrielle describes the herbs she uses to improve her health [27:07]

Gabrielle started muscle-centric medicine because of her work with palliative care [30:13]

Gabrielle explains why lack of muscle leads to dementia and inflammation [34:43]

Diseases of obesity are not diseases of “over-fat”. They are “under-muscle”. [36:53]

Gabrielle defines how much protein you should eat given how much you weigh [41:05]

Gabrielle says the number one thing people should do is eat more red meat [44:22]








Jun 30, 2020

The legendary actor Kevin Bacon is one of those rare individuals whose fame seems to have transcended his own name or image. It’s as if he has entered the ether as a meme: “Six Degrees of…” On this episode of Impact Theory with Tom Bilyeu, Kevin Bacon discusses the need for connection that underlies the “Six Degrees” meme, and shares the story of a successful career that was built on connection and long-lasting relationships. He also talks about realizing that his strength is in being a character actor, not necessarily a leading man, and describes his process for inhabiting the roles he plays so well.

This episode is brought to you by:



Kevin is quite thankful that he is able to live a very privileged lifestyle [2:16]

Kevin describes life on the road as an actor [5:26]

Absence really can make the heart grow fonder [8:37]

Kevin is completely fine with not being a lead character in a movie [11:45]

Kevin talks about playing a character that is fairly similar to him [14:43]

Marriage is something we put on a pedestal but statistically, it doesn’t usually work [18:06]

Kevin advocates that playing together helps his marriage more than the work they put in [22:09]

Kevin was so hungry to be famous, but he is actually ambivalent about being famous [27:06]

Kevin felt strongly connected to other actors in theater, but not in movies [30:29]

Kevin describes the sense of family in independent films and in theater [35:40]

Kevin discusses the protocol for returning to work during the pandemic [41:47]

Kevin advocates creating your own material even if you aren’t a budding producer [45:04]

Kevin gets asked to play roles that are all over the map [47:47]

Kevin describes his process for inhabiting a role [50:36]

Kevin and Tom discuss what it means to be a producer or a director [54:52]




“My theory about the acting thing for me is to use yourself and lose yourself. Because every part that I go into, what else do I have to use but the experiences that I’ve had? But I want to lose myself in the role. I don’t want to feel like it’s Kevin.” [13:09]


“It’s really about that hunger that we have for connectivity, as a people, as a nation, as a global entity.” [30:10]







Jun 26, 2020

Anyone who has been in a long-term relationship knows that you are going to have conflicts; you’re going to have fights. But what are these fights really about? Are arguments about washing the dishes and cleaning the closet really about those issues, or is something deeper happening? On this episode of Women of Impact, Lisa and Tom Bilyeu talk about how to deal with differing values and opposing ideas. They discuss creating shared goals, how they build positive habits, and their methods of making sure that conversations stay open, respectful and honest. And then they give a wonderful example of good communication by examining a real life conflict they have had over making the bed...


When you are having arguments about money, you are really having conflicts over values [2:48]

Concrete advice on how to minimize financial conflicts [6:59]

When you have a collision of values, part of it is that you are judging each other [9:07]

Why you have to start with shared goals and open discussion of those goals [11:02]

Tom and Lisa discuss corporal punishment, spanking and discipline [14:08]

Tom and Lisa talk about having differing religious beliefs and how they dealt with it [19:50]

What do you do when your habits and routines conflict? [23:47]

How to form habits that help your relationship [27:13]

Whenever you have conflicts over “small issues”, they are actually about deep values [31:10]

The problems that happen when you don’t articulate your values and just project instead [36:47]













Jun 25, 2020

How does an individual get out of the Matrix? Better yet, how do we as a society escape the Matrix? The extraordinary intellectual Thomas Chatterton Williams has decided to confront one of the most difficult mental prisons that Americans find themselves trapped in--the prison of racism and racial identity. On this episode of Conversations with Tom Bilyeu, Thomas Chatterton Williams tells his own story of unlearning poisonous stories about race through extensive reading, living in a new country, and reflecting on his own family. As the discussion progresses, he confronts the challenges we face in getting past mere anger to build the beautiful society that we ought to be able to live in.

This episode is brought to you by:

Wagner Spray Tech:

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Thomas talks about a novel that he tried to write that he had to give up on [1:00]

Fiction is a very different medium from non-fiction writing and requires different skills [5:17]

Nothing is ever wasted, and the best of the lost novel ended up in his non-fiction work [9:00]

Thomas credits his father as being the first guy who “pulled himself out of the Matrix” [13:01]

Thomas tells the story of the poet he is named after [18:47]

Thomas then explains how he and his wife chose his daughter’s name [21:20]

Thomas describes how stepping out of America caused him to view race differently [24:26]

Thomas discusses the complexity of his heritage, ethnicity and ancestry [28:52]

Thomas hopes for a society where the skin color is as unimportant as hair color [32:00]

Do people want progress, or do they merely want catharsis and anger? [35:27]

The blanket of identity we throw over every issue obscures deeper problems [41:49]

Tom tells the story of how he started mining for astronauts in poor areas [48:14]

Should we focus on helping children? [56:08]

Children are never in a vacuum and you have to affect the whole family [1:00:55]

Thomas talks about how he and his brother pursued completely opposed paths [1:06:22]

Thomas discusses how he raises his kids [1:13:30]

Thomas defines the good life as autonomy, as living according to his own values [1:19:27]

Tom and Thomas discuss Hip Hop in the 90s and today [1:23:35]

How can we get past anger towards the beautiful society on the other side? [1:32:36]

What happens when people’s efforts are channeled in very limited ways? [1:40:26]

Building desire is one of life’s most important quests [1:52:45]






Jun 23, 2020

Best-selling author Ken Honda might not be famous in America yet. But in Japan, he has helped millions of people change their relationships with money for the better. On this episode of Impact Theory with Tom Bilyeu, Ken Honda describes the first steps everyone needs to take to start healing their money wounds, and to transform money from something to be feared into something that brings peace and ease. He also goes into exquisite detail on the tough subject of how to find your gifts, and then how to go about making a living with them.

This episode is brought to you by:





The Zen approach is to find satisfaction in what you have instead of seeking more [1:20]

Ken’s first lesson about money was to forget about money [2:20]

Ken gives a surprising definition of what wealth means [5:12]

Money doesn't buy happiness, but it really is powerful [7:04]

People are afraid of money because of “money trauma”, often from parents [8:17]

The first step to taking control of your money narrative is gratitude and appreciation [12:15]

Focus on what you can give, and it what you will attract into your life [15:27]

How do you find your gifts, and how do you polish them into something extraordinary? [21:13]

Ken asks people literally a thousand questions to help them find their gifts [24:18]

Ken describes the way that you can monetize your gifts [26:30]

Ken advocates not comparing yourself to other people as a remedy for depression [29:47]

Ken shares the story of his upbringing, where he had money but not peace [32:19]

Ken shares another story of a man who committed family suicide [36:34]

Ken describes how the pain of his father and grandfather fuel him now [39:13]

Friendship is more protective than money [41:22]

Being in a no-money situation is uncomfortable, but it doesn’t kill you [43:49]

Ken describes cultural differences between Japanese and American attitudes [45:53]

Ken talks about what he would do if he lost all his money [50:08]




“If you start appreciating everything, including money, your life will be filled with money and appreciation.”  [4:35]


“Wealth is an emotion. It doesn’t really matter how much you have or how much you make.” [5:50]


“Most of us are not born with only one gift. We are born with several mediocre there are many small gifts, but you have to multiply them. And then you become the one and only!” [22:25]








Jun 18, 2020

For the last 40 years, Dr. Mahmoud Ghannoum, aka “Dr. Microbiome”, has been one of the leading microbiome researchers. He is also the scientist who named the mycobiome, the body’s fungal community. And on this episode of Health Theory with Tom Bilyeu, Dr. Ghannoum explains the connections between fungi and bacteria in our gut, and why it’s so important for the two communities to work in harmony. He also describes the ways the gut communicates with the brain, discusses current research on autism and gastrointestinal issues, recommends a diet for good gut health, and even shares an incredible story about how one act of kindness can change thousands of lives.

This episode is brought to you by:

Blinkist: Go to to start your FREE 7 day trial AND get 25% off a Blinkist Premium Membership.

PeopleReady: Visit



The mycobiome is the fungal community that lives in our body [1:00]

Bacteria and fungi are both good and bad, and are either in harmony or not [2:02]

Tom and Mahmoud use the analogies of forests or gardens to explain how the gut works [3:35]

Mahmoud explains how bacteria and fungi produce benefits by working in harmony [6:01]

The gut communicates with the brain, just as the brain communicates with the gut [9:21]

The microbiome really starts getting formed during birth, through the vaginal canal [12:43]

Biofilms are dangerous because they protect bad microorganisms and prevent nutrition [16:45]

Mahmoud explains how FMT can rebuild the microbiome [19:56]

Mahmoud discusses probiotics and how to target them correctly [23:39]

Mahmoud believes that within five years we will have “probiotics 2.0” [27:32]

Mahmoud explains why he wants to focus on gastrointestinal issues with autistic kids [29:31]

It’s much easier to adjust the fungal community than it is to change bacteria [33:54]

Candida can be very dangerous, but the majority of people have some of it [35:37]

Mahmoud recommends a low sugar, whole foods diet, and describes a good diet [38:18]

Mahmoud shares the story of losing his livelihood due to the invasion of Kuwait [41:22]

One act of kindness can change many lives [45:06]

Dr. Microbiome recommends the one change people should make in their diet [46:36]







Jun 16, 2020

What are the universal principles of leadership? Organizational psychologist and best-selling author Adam Grant is devoted to answering that powerful question. And on this episode of Impact Theory with Tom Bilyeu, he lays out the most fundamental aspects of a good leader. Adam and Tom discuss humility, integrity and the importance of being a giver, not a taker. They also delve deep into the idea of “cognitive entrenchment”, which is a deadly trap that everyone has to deal with, no matter how educated, informed, or driven they are.

This episode is brought to you by:

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What are the universal principles of leadership? [1:29]

Are you a giver or a taker? [2:42]

Adam explains how to be successful as a giver, and the main traps to avoid [4:31]

If you want to lead, you must keep people’s attention on the message, not on you [6:30]

A leader is like a shepherd, very rarely out in front of the flock [10:03]

Adam describes the skills leaders need to acquire, and the criticism they need to seek [13:12]

Adam explains why he works so hard to avoid getting caught up in being right [17:01]

Teams who have too many superstars don’t win championships [20:53]

The leader of a team is often the person who most exemplifies what the group stands for [24:48]

Adam describes “cognitive entrenchment” where experts get mentally stuck [25:37]

Tom and Adam discuss the need for hyper-specific goals and testable hypotheses [28:47]

Is there a point where the constant need for personal growth actually becomes harmful? [33:33]

Tom talks about being a synthesizer, instead of being the thinker of original thoughts [37:13]

Do you care about what you want to say, or about what people will actually hear? [40:36]

Adam talks about why he doesn’t always follow his intuition [42:04]




“People will say, look, you have to practice what you preach. I actually think leaders should be doing the reverse, which is to say, “I am only gonna preach what I already practice.” [3:58]


“One of the fundamental mistakes that a lot of leaders make is they develop a style and then they stick to that style. But the whole point of leadership is flexibility and adaptability.”  [11:12]


“If people just praise you over and over again, you’re only going to repeat the excellence you’ve already achieved.” [14:10]








Jun 12, 2020

Daniel Schmachtenberger is a founding member of The Consilience Project, aimed at improving public sensemaking and dialogue.

The throughline of his interests has to do with ways of improving the health and development of individuals and society, with a virtuous relationship between the two as a goal.

Towards these ends, he’s had a particular interest in the topics of catastrophic and existential risk, civilization and institutional decay and collapse as well as progress, collective action problems, social organization theories, and the relevant domains in philosophy and science.

Motivated by the belief that advancing collective intelligence and capacity is foundational to the integrity of any civilization, and necessary to address the unique risks we currently face given the intersection of globalization and exponential technology, he has spoken publicly on many of these topics, hoping to popularize and deepen important conversations and engage more people in working towards their solutions. Many of these can be found here. Right now, we are living through times that have many people wondering about the end of the world. On this episode of Conversations with Tom, host Tom Bilyeu and guest Daniel Schmachtenberger engage in a fascinating discussion about social media, neural warfare, game theory, power itself, and the ways that our society has over-optimized. In particular, they talk about why it’s so important to stop trying to be right, why we need to start thinking in more complex ways, and why the real battlefield is the human mind.

This episode is brought to you by:

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Daniel was home-schooled, allowed to study whatever he thought was most important [0:30]

Daniel’s parents actually referred to his family as an “experiment” [3:40]

By the time a child goes to school, civilization has already been imprinted on them [6:04]

Daniel advocates that optimization is actually a part of the problem [8:37]

Daniel details exactly why trying to optimize leads to serious problems [13:14]

Daniel talks about how to understand civilization’s history through game theory [18:40]

Some kinds of value can be extracted and lead to power, and other kinds can’t [20:57]

Daniel uses the example of COVID-19 to illustrate the problems with optimization [25:48]

How can we think in complex ways that respect the interconnected nature of existence [30:41]

It’s much easier to break things than it is to build complex systems [35:39]

Tom and Daniel discuss whether it’s possible to nudge people in the right direction [38:16]

Social media will lead us to war even though no one wants it [46:01]

Daniel and Tom discuss the connections between high school bullying and terrorism [51:12]

If you aren’t considering counter-responses, you are just being emotionally hijacked [58:56]

People’s minds are the battlefield [1:04:17]

There are no authorities that are trustworthy enough to just assume they are right [1:09:59]

Do you want to be effective or do you want to be right? [1:15:15]

Daniel explains how people become fundamentalist about things they are wrong about [1:19:45]

Debates are often not about understanding. They are just dogfights. [1:28:48]

Legitimate power is when I am trying to influence someone to be more self-directed [1:32:03]

Tom explains the relief of focusing on finding the right answers instead of being right [1:35:35]

If you want to be right, you are very easy to control. Fragile egos are vulnerable. [1:39:55]

Capitalism, the Trump campaign and Christianity have all been antifragile so far [1:42:33]








Jun 9, 2020

As tensions rise and emotions escalate, both socially and individually, it’s tough to figure out how to move forward. There are no easy answers, but that doesn’t change the fact that everyone has to confront the hard questions. Anthony Trucks, a former NFL player who was adopted into a white family as a black youth, has a unique and profound perspective on the crisis that America faces today. On this episode of Impact Theory with Tom Bilyeu, Anthony Trucks shares his stories of a brutal childhood, a difficult adulthood, and a marriage that he and his wife had to rebuild after her infidelity. As he tells his own story, he offers surprising and insightful commentary on the progress America has to make, and the work each individual has to do to make that progress real.

This episode is brought you by:

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Anthony explains how he remains grateful despite how hard his life has been [1:19]

Anthony describes growing up angry, dispirited and aggressive as a foster kid [3:30]

Anthony talks about how he used “dark energy” on his drive to greatness [6:34]

Tom and Anthony discuss what it means to be “bathed in discomfort” [11:18]

When someone gives you abuse and you don’t accept it, they have to walk off with it [15:33]

What is the value of emotions like anger and even rage? [19:10]

Anthony describes being able to see two sides of white America as a black man [26:08]

Anthony confronts the difficulty of white and black America understanding each other [28:28]

Anthony explains his path to recreating his marriage and forgiving his wife [35:24]

Anthony explains why he stayed in the marriage instead of finding someone new [42:27]

Anthony shares the reasons he has hope for this society [45:27]

Why you shouldn’t rob your kids of their hardships [48:21]

How do you deal with the structure of a society that was built out of oppression? [54:17]




“I had 16 fights in 6th grade. I wasn’t allowed to go to summer camp because I was a flight risk.” [4:35]


“We’re going to have to do things we’re not used to doing in order for us to get to the place we want to get to.” [35:20]


“The people who made this system--they’re faceless.” [33:52]








May 28, 2020

Most of us believe we perceive reality as it generally is, with perhaps some slight distortions. But mathematical models based on natural selection suggest that our strongest intuitions may be false. On this episode of Conversations with Tom, Donald Hoffman and Tom Bilyeu discuss the fascinating possibilities that stem from the theory that evolution gave us the equivalent of a desktop interface that hides the real truth from us so that we can take effective action. They discuss the nature of consciousness, free will, space-time, causality and the self.

This episode is brought to you by:

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Most of us believe that we see reality as it is. But we don’t. [1:14]

Donald describes how mathematical game theory explains natural selection [3:42]

Donald talks about a game he created to simulate evolution [9:33]

Seeing the truth and seeing what you need to survive are very different things [13:51]

Evolution gave us the equivalent of a desktop interface, not the truth [18:11]

Every creature has a different user interface and perceives a different reality [24:57]

Science progresses because we push our best theories to their limit [29:05]

If we let go of logic and reasoning, then we have nothing left [32:10]

There will always be unprovable truths. You can never know it all. [35:14]

Evolution has created various forms of virtual reality [39:40]

Donald describes the process by which you “see” an apple [42:05]

Evolution tells us that the language of space and time does not describe reality [47:53]

Donald proposes that reality is a vast social network of conscious agents [49:39]

A conscious agent creates their interpretation from their experiences [53:32]

What is consciousness? [57:12]

What does a conscious agent need to do? [1:00:49]

Donald and Tom discuss fascinating cases of split-brain patients [1:08:13]

If your visualization tool is very good, it can focus on finer and finer detail [1:11:36]

If space-time is doomed then is causality doomed as well? [1:22:17]

Tom and Donald discuss the nature of cause and effect [1:24:35]

Donald discusses free will and its relationship to cause and effect [1:28:01]

The self is a construction just like space and time [1:30:27]

You can never experience yourself choosing [1:39:15]

Donald describes the experience of realizing that he is just inside a VR headset [1:40:01]

What created math? [1:44:53]

What’s the difference between math all the way down and turtles all the way down? [1:50:25]

Tom and Donald discuss the double-slit experiment in physics [1:56:18]

Donald talks about his wife and his marriage [2:01:49]

Donald and Tom discuss the possibility of taking off the headset [2:03:10]

Donald and Tom discuss why they haven’t used psychedelics [2:07:10]

Since space-time is doomed, what’s next? [2:13:27]





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