Daniel Goleman (@DanielGolemanEI) is a psychologist, science journalist, and author of The New York Times Best Seller Emotional Intelligence: Why It Can Matter More Than IQ.
What We Discuss with Daniel Goleman:
- The pros and cons of technology’s influence on the way human beings connect in the 21st century.
- How we read emotions on a subconscious level — and why blind people can sometimes still see them.
- Why sights, smells, and sounds can make us relive traumatic experiences.
- How emotions become contagious.
- The science behind why people act like jerks on the Internet.
- And much more…
Like this show? Please leave us a review here — even one sentence helps! Consider including your Twitter handle so we can thank you personally!
If you’ve ever heard the term emotional intelligence or EQ, you’ll want to listen in on this fascinating conversation with Daniel Goleman — one of the most revolutionary thinkers in the field of human performance and behavior and author of The New York Times Best Seller Emotional Intelligence: Why It Can Matter More Than IQ.
In this episode we talk about how our people skills matter perhaps even more than our other cognitive abilities and can be an even greater predictor of success, how the subconscious mind picks up on emotional cues and some blind people can still see them, how technology is affecting the way human beings connect in the modern world (for better and for worse), how emotions become contagious, why people act like jerks on the Internet, and much more. Listen, learn, and enjoy!
Please Scroll Down for Featured Resources and Transcript!
Please note that some of the links on this page (books, movies, music, etc.) lead to affiliate programs for which The Jordan Harbinger Show receives compensation. It’s just one of the ways we keep the lights on around here. Thank you for your support!
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THANKS, DANIEL GOLEMAN!
If you enjoyed this session with Daniel Goleman, let him know by clicking on the link below and sending him a quick shout out at Twitter:
And if you want us to answer your questions on one of our upcoming weekly Feedback Friday episodes, drop us a line at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Resources from This Episode:
- Emotional Intelligence: Why It Can Matter More Than IQ by Daniel Goleman
- Other Books by Daniel Goleman
- Daniel Goleman’s Website
- Daniel Goleman at Twitter
- 5 Components of Emotional Intelligence, Verywell Mind
- 5 Cheap (or Free!) Quizzes to Test Your Emotional Intelligence, The Muse
- The Mirror Neuron Revolution: Explaining What Makes Humans Social, Scientific American
- Jon Levy at Twitter
- Nest Founder: “I Wake Up In Cold Sweats Thinking, What Did We Bring To The World?” Fast Company
- What is Social Communication Disorder? ADDitude
- Ancient Greeks and Memory by Byron Reese, Medium
- Sight Unseen: People Blinded by Brain Damage Can Respond to Emotive Expressions, Scientific American
- Paul Ekman at Twitter
- Thinking, Fast and Slow by Daniel Kahneman
- How PTSD and Trauma Affect Your Brain Functioning, Psychology Today
- What Exactly Is a Microaggression? Vox
- Optical Illusions Show How We See by Beau Lotto, TED Global 2009
- Emotional Intelligence by Peter Salovey and John D. Mayer, Imagination, Cognition, and Personality
- Tank Sinatra on Instagram
- Blink: The Power of Thinking Without Thinking by Malcolm Gladwell
- Dr. Drew Pinsky | Give the World the Best You Have Anyway, TJHS 72
- Why Synchrony Matters During Mother-Child Interactions: A Systematic Review by Chloe Leclere et al., PLoS One
- Pizzled by Daniel Goleman
- Five Guiding Principles of Social and Emotional Learning, McGraw-Hill, Medium
- Forget Delayed Gratification: What Kids Really Need Is Cognitive Control by Daniel Goleman, Time
- Cognitive Control: Latest Research and Reviews, Nature.com
- The Marshmallow Test in Action, Understood
- Cyber-Disinhibition by Daniel Goleman, Edge
- Amygdala Hijack: When Emotion Takes Over, Verywell Mind
- Autism Is Really a Super Power, HuffPost
- Three Kinds of Empathy by Daniel Goleman
- Joe Navarro | How to Identify and Protect Yourself from Harmful People, TJHS 135
- The Gift of Fear by Gavin de Becker
- The Light Triad vs. Dark Triad of Personality, Scientific American
- Long-Married Couples Do Look Alike, Study Finds by Daniel Goleman, The New York Times
- Prevalence and Characteristics of Physicians Prone to Malpractice Claims by David M. Studdert et al., The New England Journal of Medicine
- Mindset: The New Psychology of Success by Carol S. Dweck
- Q&A with Daniel Goleman: How the Research Supports Social-Emotional Learning, Edutopia
- SEL Tip: Deep “Put Ups” Can Build Relationships, Morningside Center
Transcript for Daniel Goleman | A Logical Look at Emotional Intelligence (Episode 232)
Jordan Harbinger: [00:00:03] Welcome to the show. I'm Jordan Harbinger. As always, I'm here with producer Jason DeFillippo. On The Jordan Harbinger Show, we decode the stories, secrets, and skills of the world's most brilliant and interesting people and turn their wisdom into practical advice that you can use to impact your own life and those around you.
[00:00:20] Today, if you've ever heard of the concept of emotional intelligence or EQ, today's guests literally invented the term. Today, we're talking with one of the OG science writers when it comes to human behavior and how our people skills actually matter as much or even more than our other cognitive abilities and can be an even greater predictor of success by the way. Today we'll cover some brain science and how blind people can sometimes still see emotions. This will blow your mind. The evolution of our brain and why we reflexively mirror the emotions of others is another topic of the day and this is how we can sometimes read people's minds so to speak, something I'd think we'd all like to master. We'll even touch on the science behind why we start to look like our partners. how emotions become contagious, and even some of the science behind why people act like jerks on the Internet. I was surprised there even was science behind that, but you know you'd be the judge. Daniel and I had a great time doing this show. He and I have a lot in common and we really clicked here. This episode is like talking to an old friend. If that old friend, of course, had been one of the most revolutionary thinkers in the field of human performance and behavior.
[00:01:25] If you want to know how we managed to book all these great guests and manage relationships with high performing people, amazing folks of all walks of life and lots of them by the way. Check out our Six-Minute Networking course. It's free. It's at jordanharbinger.com/course. I would love to teach you these skills. They're not that hard. They take a few minutes a day and most of the guests on the show actually subscribe to the course in the newsletter. So come join us, you'll be in great company even if I do say so myself. All right. Here's Daniel Goldman.
[00:01:53] One thing that when I was reading the books --I kept coming up on which is almost cliche at this point-- which is that technology is keeping us from connecting. And I think everyone has talked about this or heard about this on the news recently, but I wanted to have you on the show because you're the expert on the science of this instead of just like parents riffing about how these kids these days don't know how to talk.
Daniel Goleman: [00:02:16] Well, I don't agree that it's keeps us from connecting. I think it makes us connect differently and in some ways, it creates a deficit. Facebook --all of that-- allows us to stay in touch with people that we would be out of touch with. That's good. Our network stays intact. We can keep up with people. We know what people are doing day-to-day if they bother to post. On the other hand, the way it's not good is that tech is intrusive and what it intrudes into is face-to-face interaction. I saw a group of probably 14-year-olds sitting at a table hanging out. Every one of them was looking at their phone. They weren't looking at each other. They wouldn't even be talking. They might have been texting each other. I have no idea. But the way the social brain is designed is for face-to-face interaction in person. And the way people learn --from birth on-- how to be a decent human being is by being engaged with other people. The mirror-neuron system --which now is famous, it used to be little known-- is one way that preverbal infants learn how to have a conversation, learn how to engage, learn how to pay attention to the same thing someone else is paying attention to. These are the basics of human interaction. To the extent that kids are spending more and more hours staring at a small screen on a device, they're not being with the other person and I feel that's going to create a big deficit.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:03:56] It's funny, I was walking with my friend Jon Levy and his wife yesterday here in New York. And I said, “Hey, are you, how often do you use spot celebrities when you're walking in New York?” Because I feel like every time I come to New York for a few days, I see Larry David or Jerry Seinfeld or somebody walking along the street. And my friend Jon said, “Yeah, all the time. Last time, I was with you. We saw Richard Kind.” And then his wife said, “No, I don't really ever see anyone.” And then another friend of ours said, “No, I don't really ever see anyone.” And he said, “Yeah, but you're always looking at your phone.” And then we looked around and all these people were walking down the streets in New York and they were all looking at their phone. And I said, “Oh, so it's not that you aren't seeing the celebrities because they're not out. You're not seeing them because you're looking at Facebook or whatever, Instagram.”
Daniel Goleman: [00:04:42] Well, it's not just celebrities, it might be your own children. It might be your spouse, the person you're dating. It intrudes everywhere.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:04:52] I just thought the celebrity because I thought, “Oh, I'm so lucky. I see these interesting people out all the time and I'll just go up and say hi.” And it's not that I have more opportunity, it's just that I'm--
Daniel Goleman: [00:05:01] I don't know, the celebrities I know are glad you're looking at your phone and not them.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:05:05] Yeah, I'm the annoying one that's like, “Hey, I really liked your show on there. Oh, God.” Somebody knew who we are, we're over it. You mentioned that the more toddlers watch TV, the less they get along with others at school. And that sort of seems like the--
Daniel Goleman: [00:05:18] Well, I guess when I wrote the book, it was TV. Now it's the parents are giving toddlers their own devices that have funny cartoons. They have engaging things, they have stuff you want to watch. And so toddlers don't have face time in real life as much as they used to with their family, with their peers, with people. And that means that they're not picking up the sensibility of how to be socially intelligent.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:05:51] I saw a kid eating dinner with his father the other day and my wife is due in five weeks so I'm going to be a father for the first time.
Daniel Goleman: [00:05:48] Wonderful. Congratulations.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:06:00] Thank you. And I see these parents eating dinner with their kids and I'm not judging them because I get the temptation for this. But the kid was watching some anime, some cartoons on his phone or an iPad or some sort of similar device and the father was eating and I thought “Wow, what a wasted opportunity. Now they could have been hanging out and talking all day.” I don't want to judge these two particular people. But it seemed like a wasted opportunity because the kid's sitting there watching something, looking essentially at the wall and a small screen and his father was right there eating quietly alone. They might as well have been in different rooms.
Daniel Goleman: [00:06:32] I heard a fellow who's on the team that designed the first iPhone for Apple and he said, “We were all 20 somethings, we're single. We tried to make it as seductive as we could.” He said, “Now I have two kids and I really regret it.”
Jordan Harbinger: [00:06:45] Oh no. Wow. That's interesting. The concept of social autism. Did you coin this? This is something that's from the book, but iPads, smartphones, email. I'm wondering if it's worse than TV and what great TV and radio did to people, or if it's just another flavor of the same thing.
Daniel Goleman: [00:07:05] Well, you know, with every new advance in technology, going back, interestingly to writing. I forget if it was Aristotle or Plato or Socrates who wrote --didn't write-- who said, the emergence of writing is going to be the death of memory. It used to be in those days, they had people who would remember the mist, they would remember the lineage stories, they'd remember all of the great stories of your culture, and they'd recite them because they had prodigious memories. And now that's disappeared and it's disappeared because of writing. I don't know what's going to disappear because of the tech we have now, but I'm afraid it is going to diminish emotional and social intelligence in kids.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:07:48] Right. And that that seems likely to happen because people are complaining about it already and we haven't even seen the full effect. I mean the iPhone has been around for 10 years, so we haven't seen the full effect long term on adults.
Daniel Goleman: [00:08:03] That's true. Today's children never knew a time when they couldn't pick up a device and lose themselves. And by losing themselves, I mean to get absorbed in something other than what's happening right here in real-time.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:08:16] There's a lot about emotions in social intelligence and your other work. And one thing that stuck out as fascinating was there's this blind guy who could somehow still see emotions. Can you tell me about this? And if you need a refresher because it's been a while since you wrote the book, I'm happy to provide it.
Daniel Goleman: [00:08:30] Yeah, provide it.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:08:32] Essentially, this person had damaged the visual cortex of his brain and they thought, “Okay, he's blind. He can't see anything.” Because the eyes can still take in light and take in data, but if the visual cortex of your brain is broken, your vision doesn't work.
Daniel Goleman: [00:08:50] Blindsight.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:08:51] It's something like that.
Daniel Goleman: [00:08:53] So blindsight means the message from your visual sensory system doesn't go up to the cortex. That's the blindness part. But it does go to other parts of the brain, the emotional parts of the brain or subcortical. So, you could get an emotional reading. You could also still hear and voice carries a huge amount of emotional valence.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:09:18] I thought this was fascinating because of course, you think, “Oh, well, if you're blind, it means your eyes don't work.” And actually, that's not necessarily the case for everybody who is blind. And in this guy's case, the eyes were not damaged. It was the brain that was damaged. So, I think in this particular experiment, the researchers were showing photos or images of people were angry, sad, happy, and they thought he could guess what they were, but he wasn't guessing. He was taking in the data—
Daniel Goleman: [00:09:47] He was sensing it like we do, but what he was picking up was the subcortical part of that information.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:09:4] Because when I look at a face that's happy, well I see teeth and I see the lips moving a certain way --so that's a smile-- so that person is happy. But that's not necessarily really what's going on.
Daniel Goleman: [00:10:02] Actually, that's not what happened. What you're doing is explaining to yourself how you already know that person is happy.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:10:08] Right. I'm rationalizing it,
Daniel Goleman: [00:10:09] Rationalizing it but you're subcortical emotional centers picked it up immediately.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:10:16] So instantly. I don't need to see the slow smile creep in and go, “Oh, the teeth, the mouth, the eyes. It's just boom. I immediately sensed this whether or not I can see.
Daniel Goleman: [00:10:25] Although as Paul Ekman, the expert on emotions, knows you can educate those systems so that you can be more accurate.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:10:35] Really, I know that I took that. Is it METT, the micro expression training something.
Daniel Goleman: [00:10:43] Which was a paulekman.com.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:10:45] I took that and I took it a couple of times because I wanted to get a hundred and I got a hundred on it. And then I found out that that it's tricky to get a hundred on it more than once, so I just kept taking it, but I think I'm more gamed the test after a while then learned it. Because if you take a test enough times--
Daniel Goleman: [00:11:05] You get it.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:11:07] Yeah. You see the examples again but either way, you can see that you're able to improve within hours of studying these micros.
Daniel Goleman: [00:11:15] Well, he says within minutes, 45 minutes.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:11:17] Oh I believe that. Yeah. Maybe I'm slow.
Daniel Goleman: [00:11:21] He didn't say you get a hundred he said you'd do better than you did it from the start.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:11:26] A friend of mine took it with me. He got like an 86 or 90.
Daniel Goleman: [00:11:28] However, there's a larger point here, which is that the emotional systems, emotional intelligence, being intelligent about emotions is a learned and learnable skill. And you can learn it and we learn it in life. And if you haven't learned it, like I just started a coaching certification for people who are helping others in organizations and business executives or agencies whatever be better at the parts of emotional intelligence—self-awareness, self-management, empathy, and relationship skills. All of those you can develop. You can get better. It's like growing a muscle, but you need to know how to do it. You need the right systematic learning.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:12:14] If the emotional brain, if the amygdala can see emotions in pictures, even if we're blind, that means that it can detect things even if our thinking brain doesn't, right?
Daniel Goleman: [00:12:24] It does it all the time. You have to realize--There's a wonderful book Thinking, Fast and Slow by Daniel Kahneman. So, the fast circuitry is the amygdala and everything subcortical which in evolution was designed to help us survive. That's why it's fast. The slower circuitry was this later accessory that was added on the neocortex --the thinking brain-- which takes time to figure it out but probably comes up with a better answer, particularly in when we're too impulsive.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:12:57] So, it takes data. Our cortex will take data from the amygdala and go, “Well, you're feeling this way and there's a different reason, or maybe this is an inaccurate perception.” Whereas the amygdala's kind of like the squirrel brain that says--
Daniel Goleman: [00:13:12] I was in London the other day talking to about 600 therapists who specialize in treating trauma. Trauma is a disorder of the amygdala. During the traumatic moment, the amygdala becomes overwhelmed, not just the amygdala, but the whole network it's involved in and it gets stuck in overdrive. The amygdala's job is to detect whether we're safe or it there's a threat. And in trauma post-trauma, you start to see a threat where there is none and it triggers the whole system. So that happens instantly and what they're trying to do is help people widen the gap between the emotional reaction and how you actually react--what you say and do. That's a definition of maturity is widening the gap between impulse and action.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:13:58] Yeah, I remember struggling with that more when I was younger and I still do. So hopefully when I'm a little in 20 years, I should have a nice, calm center of gravity. It seems though that the emotional brain, the amygdala can remember things and also be afraid of things even if those things are--Let's say if we have a memory of fear, is that kind of what PTSD is? Our amygdala remembers some kind of trauma or fear.
Daniel Goleman: [00:14:23] Well, it's not just that it remembers, it's that it's searching for cues that say it's happening again and it makes a lot of mistakes in people who've had trauma because it would rather be safe than sorry. That's his decision role. So, if there's even something vaguely reminiscent, a smell, a tone of voice, it can trigger the whole reaction that you had originally.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:14:48] Yeah. I remember when I was a kid, this was my first experience with this. I was in the car going to soccer practice or something with my friend and his dad who was driving and there was a helicopter, totally normal. It's like a traffic copter. And he goes, “Hey, do you do that?” And we were like, “Yeah, the helicopter.” But he had gone immediately, gone back to Vietnam for just a second, and then he came back and turned on the radio and turn it up a little bit. And you could tell that something had happened with that helicopter. It was close enough, whatever lower than usual that had triggered something. I'd never seen anything like that before. And I remember, my friend goes, “Yeah, my dad just sometimes does that.”
Daniel Goleman: [00:15:27] That's a sign of trauma.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:15:28] Yeah. Yeah. He definitely had some. I didn't even realize what that was probably until a decade later I went, “Oh, he’s having a flashback or something like that.”
Daniel Goleman: [00:15:38] Hypothetically, I just can't talk about your dad.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:15:43] My friend’s dad.
Daniel Goleman: [00:15:43] But people who had battlefield trauma in Vietnam and who did not probably associate it with helicopter sounds because helicopters were everywhere. Today, the sound of a helicopter can queue the whole thing. It's not that you have a memory, it's that amygdala puts you in the same state that you are in.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:16:01] Right. Because that might be an advantage to survival.
Daniel Goleman:[00:16:08] Exactly, the amygdala is the brain's radar for threat. And the reason that we have that whole network is to help us survive and in trauma. And it's not just battlefield trauma. That's kind of the poster boy for a trauma. But when I talk to these therapists, most of the people they treat were abused in childhood, emotionally, physically, or sexually. That's the most common. And by the way, they said about 25 percent of people have that kind of experience about one percent of whom go into therapy.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:16:40] So there's a ton of untreated trauma that's then re-triggered by certain smells or sights or some other emotional memory if you can call it that.
Daniel Goleman: [00:16:49] Yeah exactly.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:16:51] It sheds a little bit of light on when people, now they say, “Oh, you're triggered.” Or people say trigger warning. This is a bunch of wimps. It sort of now scientifically makes a little bit of sense if somebody was--
Daniel Goleman :[00:17:04] Well, in theory, it makes sense but it could be a bunch of wimps.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:17:07] Yeah, I think it's probably 50/50 wimps and then the other--
Daniel Goleman: [00:17:10] We don’t know if people are invoking or that was a microaggression and you know--
Jordan Harbinger: [00:17:14] Oh, that's a whole can of worms.
Daniel Goleman: [00:17:16] But let's not go there. But there is a basis to it. I just don't know if it's overgeneralized.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:17:25] The sight, sound, smell thing really was interesting for me because these rats, for example, these researchers I guess somehow damaged or removed the auditory cortex of the rats’ brains. And then they played a sound that they were playing when they were shocking. Theoretically, the rats should not have been able to hear the sound and yet the amygdala could still hear the sound.
Daniel Goleman: [00:17:48] Well, I don't know what theory you’re going by, Jordan. But there are really multiple sensory systems in the brain. Some of which go to the cortex that's what we're aware of and most of which go to the subcortical areas that we're not aware of. There's a kind of optical illusion in awareness, which is that we know everything we're aware of. The fact is we don't, 99 percent of what comes into the mind for information processing is processed out of awareness. And so it gives lots of room for the kinds of reactions that some that were kind of surprised by because it's counterintuitive because of that optical illusion.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:18:28] Could we be afraid of a certain type of person because of something that we're not consciously processing?
Daniel Goleman: [00:18:34] Absolutely.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:18:35] Because I'm wondering, can we find racism in our amygdala? Instead of we're just being a racist jerk, maybe like, “Oh, well there's something that's being triggered there.
Daniel Goleman: [00:18:45] Well, I don't know if you're familiar with the literature on unconscious bias, but it's about prejudice in people who feel --I'm not prejudiced-- but there are subtle tests that get at unconscious responses that show, “Well, yes, you may be prejudiced and not be aware of it.”
Jordan Harbinger: [00:19:04] And that's usually the case, right? It's the rule, not the exception--
Daniel Goleman: [00:19:08] It’s pretty normative. Yeah, that's right.
Jason DeFillippo: [00:19:12] You're listening to The Jordan Harbinger Show with our guest Daniel Goleman. We'll be right back.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:19:17] This episode is sponsored in part by Blue Diamond Almonds. Honey roasted-flavored almonds, sriracha-flavored almonds, wasabi & soy sauce-flavored almonds. Do I have your attention? No, honestly, when I got these at that--How hard are you trying to make different flavors of nuts? But they're amazing. We housed these things. We went to the store and we got more of our favorite flavors and very rarely do I do that with snack food, especially when that got mailed to me that it was like, “Hey, you have to try this for an ad spot.” I was blown away by these and I'm not one to normally give a crap about snack food. I'll be real, but if you're going to work, you're bored at work, we keep these in the car. We keep these everywhere because nuts, you have to worry about keeping them refrigerated. They don't have sugar. They're not attracting a bunch of ants and stuff and I don't hate myself when I house like seven handfuls of these because they're almonds and they can have some nutrition inside. That's right. When you’re listening to this podcast. I highly recommend going and checking out some of these Blue Diamond Almonds. Don't deny those cravings. Go pick up some flavors right now and they want me to tell you that you should eat them, Blue Diamond Almonds, crave victoriously. Good slogan.
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[00:22:14] Thanks for listening and supporting the show and to learn more and get links to all the great discounts you just heard from our amazing sponsors, visit jordanharbinger.com/deals. Don't forget we have a worksheet for today's episode so you can make sure you solidify your understanding of the key takeaways from Daniel Goldman. That link is in the show notes at jordanharbinger.com/podcast. If you'd like some tips on how to subscribe to the show, just go to jordanharbinger.com/subscribe. Subscribing to the show is absolutely free. It just means that you get all the latest episodes in your podcast player as they're released so you don't miss a single thing from the show. Now, back to our show with Daniel Goldman.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:22:52] A lot of what we're hearing from you here and from your work might not even be brand new to the listener, but that must feel good because you were kind of one of the pioneering works in this area. So, now that some of this stuff is in the psych guys and generally people are conscious of this --now you kind of see it everywhere—or we kind of see it everywhere. We were talking about that pre-show.
Daniel Goleman: [00:23:12] Well, you know, for years I was at the New York Times as a science journalist and my job was to spot what's coming, what's in the journals that people don't know yet, and announce it in the science section of New York Times. I'm used to this phenomenon where, “Oh yeah, I was like one of the first to say that, but now everybody knows it.”
Jordan Harbinger: [00:23:34] But that's great! That must be pretty nice to see your work going all over the place and being cited so many times.
Daniel Goleman: [00:23:40] Well, they don't necessarily cite my work, but it just becomes a meme. Take emotional intelligence, that was the name of an article that I read in 1990 in a journal that was written by a guy who was an assistant professor at Yale. He's now the President of Yale, Peter Salovey. I thought, “Wow, that is such a great term.” However, that journal went defunct. It no longer exists, but I did make the phrase well known in the book, Emotional Intelligence. And when I wrote the book before it came on, I thought, “You know, if one day, I hear two people use the phrase emotional intelligence and they both know what it means, I have succeeded.” In other words, I'll have created a meme.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:24:22] Yeah. I mean, I think everyone knows what that means now.
Daniel Goleman: [00:24:25] Yeah. While a couple of months ago, I ran an article saying emotional intelligence is the new black. You have to have it.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:24:33] Even my friend, Tank Sinatra, who's a big influencer on Instagram, he said that your work influenced life significantly because he took an IQ test as a kid and it came up pretty poor. But then he took a different type of tests that included what's going on in this picture with these two and he would make up all of these stories. And then so they said, “Hey, your son is not dumb. He's just really got a different kind of intelligence.”
Daniel Goleman: [00:24:59] Exactly.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:25:00] So instead of thinking he was dumb like he had used to, now he realized, “Oh, I have a different kind of intelligence.” And that was based upon your research.
Daniel Goleman: [00:25:07] I'm happy to hear that.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:25:08] Yeah. He was pretty happy to hear that I was going to come and meet you today. Reflexive imitation, this is when we look at photos, we see someone's confused expression --like the one you just gave me or a smile or sadness-- and we reflexively imitate the emotion in the photograph. What's going on here? Why do we as humans do this? What does this do for us?
Daniel Goleman: [00:25:30] The social brain --which is relatively newly discovered-- tells us that affective neuroscience tells us that there is other circuitry in the brain, which helps us automatically sense what the other person feels to the point where we will mimic it. Probably mirror neurons --which are now famous neurons-- are prominent in that, but there are other circuits as well. We can mirror what we see particularly emotional expressions. Mirror neurons are very attuned on emotions and there are other circuits that not only give us the same felt sense but activate in us the same emotions as the person we're with is feeling,
Jordan Harbinger: [00:26:21] It almost sounds like self-help BS because it's so simple where we look at someone's smile and then we start to feel happy because we're reflexively imitating what they're doing. It seems like something that I would assume evolved from apes because you hear and read and see them doing this all the time. What about when we try to fight that impulse? What happens when we try to suppress our emotions? Because if our emotions are contagious, and that's one of our elements of communication. What happens when we try to stifle?
Daniel Goleman: [00:26:51] I would say our emotions are probably most contagious when we're in neutral, when we don't have some agenda, when we have a social agenda --like “I'm going to scam this guy,” or “I'm going to seduce this lady,” or we have some goal, and then we start manipulating the emotions that can override that automatic precedents.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:27:14] Meaning if I'm trying to get you to feel happy, it's harder somehow or it overrides what I would naturally do. If I'm talking with you with an agenda and I want you to feel relaxed, so I'm laying it on a little bit thick, that overrides what you would naturally do. Your maybe your good instinct to be a little bit more careful or--
Daniel Goleman: [00:27:33] Actually, you know it's interesting when you get self-conscious about this, it tends to screw up what you're doing. If you're trying to make me feel a certain way, I'm probably going to at some level pickup. “Oh, he's trying.” And it creates a little bit of distrust, which means that it's not going to work that well.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:27:52] Right, right. Okay, that makes sense. There's some other tell, and that's probably why people who have, who are sociopaths, for example, they're really good at manipulation because they don't have that thing in the back of their brain that says, “You know what you're doing is wrong,” or maybe it doesn't work quite the same way. If I try to lie well, it's pretty transparent because I'm not that good at it.
Daniel Goleman: [00:28:14] Some people are very good at it. I just talked to a guy who is a very sophisticated investor and he met with Bernie Madoff a week before Bernie Madoff was in prison. Bernie Madoff was still scamming away and he thought that Bernie Madoff’s spiel sounded pretty good and he was a very sophisticated guy. So, Bernie who I have never met, I assumed was very skilled at a lot of these interpersonal arts.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:28:48] Most of us, we really can't hide this very well. There's a study in your book that says, “Look, if your blood pressure spikes because you're trying to suppress something or lie other people's blood pressure will also rise.” So, it's very difficult unless you're just an expert, and you're in suppressing every other element of your physicality. Other people --who are really attuned to what their body is doing-- are going to feel this. And I wondered about this in a dating or safety context because women will say, “Oh, this guy just gave me the creeps.” And as men, we don't say that as often, probably because we're not as finely attuned to the safety concerns. But what I'm wondering is when women, for example, or anyone feels this, are they possibly talking about the fact that their body's doing something that they can't quite articulate, but it's still setting off a fear response?
Daniel Goleman: [00:29:38] I don't know but I'd surmise. You know, women are generally more empathic mostly than men. It's interesting what you say maybe for an evolutionary reason and that they've had to be better at guessing if is this guy scamming me, he's just trying to get me for a night, or is this like someone I can raise kids with. That's a very important question and evolution and I suspect it may make women more sensitive to discrepancies between what someone is seeming to say and what they're actually wanting.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:30:17] The circuitry for suspicion is what protects us. And Malcolm Gladwell writes a little bit about this in Blink too, where there's something going on. You see it, you can't articulate it, you get it in the first few seconds, and then you can spend the next three years trying to figure out what it is and might not hit it. And this red flag that you wrote about which are --well, I wrote that it's a red flag, I think you probably agree--These emotional mismatches when somebody doesn't seem upset about something upsetting where the words don't match the emotions. Paul Ekman, who we’ve mentioned earlier, says this is a lie indicator. I'm wondering if there's any way--Have you ever taught people how to use this? What would you teach somebody about what to observe to use this?
Daniel Goleman: [00:31:03] Paul Ekman teaches people how to detect lies. He's taught intelligence agents, police forces, people who interrogate others for living because the fine-tuning that mechanism is very important for what they do. So, I would say I've never done it, but it clearly is teachable and learnable.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:31:23] Yeah. I just wondered if there's something where you said, “All right kids, you know, you, you need to learn that when somebody is telling you something upsetting and they seem remarkably calm, there's something that's not quite right,” or “If they seem overly excited in terms of their words, but they themselves are not, there's something wrong there that you need to pay attention to.”
Daniel Goleman: [00:31:46] I agree with you but I've never--
Jordan Harbinger: [00:31:46] Never had to articulate it?
Daniel Goleman: [00:31:47] Nope.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:31:47] As far as this is being used in practice, therapists tune into their own bodies to sync with their clients and understand them. I was talking with Dr. Drew--Are you familiar with him? Dr. Drew Pinsky, he gives a lot of radio advice. He's been on television a lot. He's a good friend of mine, but I asked him, “What's your secret?” Because what he will do, which is frankly amazing, someone will call in and say something like, “Well, I just can't find the right friends and I moved to a new place and I'm having trouble doing this and this.” And he'll go, “Sharon, how long have you been using heroin?” And she'll go, “How do you know? “ It’s just really amazing. I mean, it just looks uncanny. It looks super natural and you think, “Did he stage this phone call? What's going--?” But he does it over and over and over. It's amazing. And I asked him, “How the hell do you do that?” And he said, “When I hear the call or I try to think, ‘What does this person sitting like and doing with their body when they're talking this way and their energy level?’ And I don't mean that in a metaphysical way, I mean very literally their level of energy and the way that they're sitting in the way that they're talking. And the way that they're asking me this question, the more similar that physiological state one party is to another, the more easily these parties consents each other's feelings.” That's what you wrote and it seems like that's what he's doing and that's what Dr. Drew's doing manually. I'm guessing it goes without saying that more empathetic people make better therapists. Is that what empathy is?
Daniel Goleman: [00:33:16] Yeah, empathy is attuning to the other person's emotions without them telling you in words what those emotions are and it means picking up nonverbal signals, tone of voice, the implications of that sounds like he's very sensitive to tone of voice. It's only phone calls?
Jordan Harbinger: [00:33:35] Yeah, it's radio phone calls.
Daniel Goleman: [00:33:36] He is not even seeing the person.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:33:38] No. I mean on his television shows, of course, he is, but that's TV. I mean TV is all fake, but on the radio, these, this was a radio show I grew up with, called Loveline and it was live. There was no way for him to get much other information other than asking questions. And of course, he's an addiction specialist, so a lot of the people that are calling in are not necessarily telling the whole truth about what he's asking in the first place.
Daniel Goleman: [00:34:04] Oh, he's in addiction specialist.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:34:05] Right.
Daniel Goleman: [00:34:05] You didn’t tell me that.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:34:06] Oh yeah,
Daniel Goleman: [00:34:06] Well, that's very important because what it means is he's had hours and hours of practice with people who are addicts and can pick up, as you said, tells from them that are specific to that particular pathology.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:34:22] Is this the same thing as synchrony and you brought this up as well in the, in your earlier work that mothers and children have this level of synchrony. Can you tell us what synchrony is and why this is born?
Daniel Goleman: [00:34:35] Well, synchrony is a non-verbal attunement which is a sign of resonance or connection or simpatico, real chemistry. For example, people in rapport--the three signs of rapport, one is full mutual attention and the second is synchrony that arises from that. You pick it up if you took a video of two people interacting or feeling the synchrony and then you played it back and just watch the bodies as though they're choreographed. They're exquisitely attuned to each other. That's a sign of that synchrony.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:35:10] And mothers and children have this? Why is it more attuned that way?
Daniel Goleman: [00:35:15] Well-attuned mothers and children. If the mother is self-absorbed, the mother is an alcoholic, the mother is on heroin, if the mother is in some way not able to be present to the child, they won't have it. But if the mother has that and most mothers do naturally, that mother is what's called the secure base of the child. Secure base means I know that if I'm with my mom, she’ll know what I feel, she'll empathize. She'll tune in, she'll care, she'll protect me, she'll guide me. And people who have a secure base --developmental experts tell us-- grew up most mentally healthy. That's the best way to start out in life.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:36:02] Is this something we can work on manually? Of course, if you're a mother, you can work on it with your child. But is this something we can work on with our significant other, with our own kids? Is there a manual process that we can use for this?
Daniel Goleman: [00:36:14] You know, there's no quick fix. What I recommend is paying full attention, being fully present to the other person because everything else follows from there. There's a third ingredient of rapport--One is full attention, one is synchrony, the third is it feels good. You know, “Oh I had a great time with that person.” It's because you got into that state with them.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:36:36] So, work on trying to do that with as many people as possible. Would you say that that would be the homework for somebody who says, “Oh I need that?”
Daniel Goleman: [00:36:43] You could just do it with one person. Yeah. You don't have to do it with many, but I think the point is to monitor yourself. I think it takes a certain level of self-awareness. Like where's my attention going? Like right now.
Jason DeFillippo: [00:37:01] You're listening to The Jordan Harbinger Show with our guest, Daniel Goldman. We'll be right back after this.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:37:07] This episode is sponsored in part by HostGator.
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Jordan Harbinger: [00:39:22] This episode is also sponsored in part by Dashlane. So, this is kind of important. A lot of people --I didn't realize this, Jason-- I know I'm not you. A lot of people use the same password on every website and they know that they shouldn't do that. I thought that was some ‘90s-ish where it's like, “Okay, nobody's really doing that anymore, right?” No, apparently. Apparently, you all are doing that and I know this because lately a few friends of mine have been like, “Oh, I just clicked on a scammed email and logged into my Apple account or my iCloud account.” And then I'm like, “Oh, just change your iCloud password. Don't worry. It's got a two-factor. You're good. You know, it's on with your phone.” And they go, “Yeah, but you know I also use this for my bank,“ and I'm like, “Oh, okay.” Now we got to go emergency because they changed the email to like something, something.mail.ru. And you know what that means? Russian anonymous email, not a good thing when, when they're using that for your bank account for God's sake. So Dashlane is one-stop-shop security app. It's secure every aspect of your online life. You don't have to remember passwords, you don't have to type passwords on any login pages because Dashlane keeps track and then automatically enters the password. It protects your sensitive information. It stores everything encrypted securely auto-fills form, so it saves you a ton of time. It's not just security. And then once you download the app, you've got like this digital bodyguard with a VPN so it encrypts your web traffic. If you're using like airline airport or Starbucks Wi-Fi, it'll alert you of a breach. It also monitors dark webs to see if your data is being bought and sold on the dark web, which is pretty impressive. And so this type of thing, this is security that I can't believe people don't have this. You need to have unique passwords for everything. It should be generated and then stored, encrypted and that's what Dashlane does. Jason,
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Jordan Harbinger: [00:42:04] Pre-show we were talking about mirror neurons and how this is trendy right now, but there's also a lot of pop culture pop-science BS around it. And you actually came in and said, “Look, these are multiple systems. It's not just kind of like there are some neurons and I have a mirror on the front and here we are.
Daniel Goleman: [00:42:20] Well a mirror neurons got a lot of press early on, but effect of neuroscience, the or social neuroscience--Researchers who study this have realized that there are multiple networks and circuitry in the brain that are designed to interface with the person in front of us and create this backchannel where emotions pass and all kinds of information. The kinds of things you've mentioned before, pass automatically and unconsciously and instantly. And that keeps interactions on the same page. People who have deficits in these circuits have trouble in interaction. They have trouble with relationships. People who don't are more successful at them.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:43:09] Is it a biological deficit or is it, “Oh, your mother was not present, “ so your mirror neurons systems didn't get enough heavy lifting early enough?
Daniel Goleman: [00:43:17] It could be either because you know, it's not just nature or nurture. It's both nature and nurture. You have a genetic endowment, which means that in those circuits, the neurotransmitters that communicate along them, uh, have a set point at birth that determined some range for you. But the good news is neuroplasticity that all of this can be enhanced with practice. And that's good news for emotional intelligence and social intelligence. That is why I’m starting coaching, uh, enterprise, because I now realize that there are a lot of people, particularly in the working world where the competencies that build on this basic domain self-awareness, self-management, empathy, relationships, skills. There are about 12 competencies that come up over and over that organizations themselves find distinguished their star performers. And it turns out that the ingredients of them can be enhanced. It's like any other skillset
Jordan Harbinger: [00:44:22] That, of course, makes sense. And I love the idea that our brains are bridging with one another kind of automatically. So there's emotional transference between parties in and there's more if you have good rapport and maybe less if you don't.
Daniel Goleman: [00:44:39] I’d put it this way, I'd say this circuitry gets us on the same page and interaction. For example, you need to know instinctively, intuitively, and these circuits tell you when an interaction is ending. There are some people who don't pick that up. And drive you crazy. They just keep talking and talking to them. It's like you'd give them every cue you can think of and they'd just oblivious and that's a deficit in this skillset.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:45:08] That's funny. That's like a Seinfeld sketch right there. Like, “Well, I’m looking at my watch, backing away, and they're walking forward.”
Daniel Goleman: [00:45:15] And saying, “Well, it's been great seeing you,” and they just keep going and going and going. That's a deficiency in this circuitry.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:45:27] It’s funny this comes up now. I'm very, very cognizant of not inadvertently sending those signals. I was in a meeting earlier today and I really wanted to know what time it was, but I didn't want to check my watch because that's one of those--
Daniel Goleman: [00:45:39] It’s a signal.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:45:40] --signals. So, I took my watch off and put it on the table and had it faced me and I thought, “Okay, I'm getting away with this.” But then you've got to turn your phone over because any little distractions--
Daniel Goleman: [00:45:51] No, but then your eye goes to the watch and that's what the person picks up. “Oh, you're looking at your watch.” And so they don't say you're looking at your watch. They know you're sending a cue that you want to end--Very tough.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:46:05] Yeah, it is tough. It's tough because me being infinitely distractible by little devices and things like that, I have to --when I'm with friends-- take my phone, put it face down on the tables. So, I can't feel it vibrate. I can't see the screen light up. Make sure my watch isn't getting pings from my phone because they vibrate now too. Because otherwise, I will inadvertently tell the person that I'm with who I haven't seen in forever and then I'm loving every minute of chatting with. I’ll be accidentally telling them non-verbally that I want to get the hell out of there every two minutes and it can't feel good.
Daniel Goleman: [00:46:37] That's a big problem in modern life.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:46:38] Yeah. And I feel like I'm especially guilty of it. Although, maybe we all are just because I'm so sensitive to those little pings.
Daniel Goleman: [00:46:46] I got a text from someone in their 20s who I know, and he was astonished that I did not text back immediately.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:46:56] “Oh yeah. Are you mad at me?”
Daniel Goleman: [00:46:58] Exactly. Yeah, but I'm not of the generation that text back immediately.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:47:05] I have to force myself to not assume the worst if I don't hear back from it. And we all have those friends that text back three days later.
Daniel Goleman: [00:47:12] Do you realize what's happened in the last 10, 15 years? The norms for interaction and for attention have changed. They've shifted. It used to be--In fact, in 2007 Time Magazine, which then was the big magazine, had a little script that says there's a new word in English language, it's pizzle. It’s a combination of puzzled and pissed off. It's how you feel when someone takes out their Blackberry and starts talking to someone else. In 2007, that was a breach of etiquette. Now it's standard operating procedure. Nobody thinks twice about, “Oh, my phone's ringing. I'll pick it up and talk to them.” The fact that they said Blackberry tells you something.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:47:53] Yeah, sure exactly.
Daniel Goleman: [00:47:55] It gets a little dated.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:47:55] It's only gotten worse.
Daniel Goleman: [00:47:56] But what's happened is that the norms have shifted without our noticing. Today, this young guy --young from my perspective-- is offended that I don't text him back. And from my point of view, it's like, “Well, I get around to it.” So, that's just a generational difference.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:48:17] It's like an email. You look at texting, like email where it's not urgent, it's just in your inbox. Whereas I think people my age and maybe younger are --well my age, it could be either or-- but younger, certainly, it's more urgent than a phone call, which they would never make.
Daniel Goleman: [00:48:33] That's one indicator of a whole set of normative shifts that have happened, which I think in total are giving predominance of priority to technology over people. And that's where I see a problem coming.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:48:48] Sure. Yeah. That can't be good.
Daniel Goleman: [00:48:55] This is why I've become a big advocate of what's called social-emotional learning, which is giving kids lessons in emotional intelligence in a developmentally appropriate way from age five or preschool until they go to university. Because one of the things that kids are challenged on now is tuning into other people is empathizing and is managing their own attention. Kids are more distracted than ever. And one of the things that I think is very helpful for them is learning cognitive control. Cognitive control is the capacity to put your attention where you want it and ignore distractions.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:49:33] Oh God, I don't have that.
Daniel Goleman: [00:49:35] It turns out that it's the same circuitry that inhibits emotional impulse. So it's a two-first. So, kids are clearer, more focused, and more calm, which is the best way for them to be in order to learn. It helps the school's mission and it helps the kids in life. It turns out they did a study in New Zealand of cognitive control. They assessed kids between ages four and eight and tracked them down in their 30s. And they found that cognitive control in childhood predicted your financial success, your health, better than IQ in childhood and better than the wealth of the family you grew up in.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:50:17] Is this the marshmallow test?
Daniel Goleman: [00:50:18] The marshmallow test isn't one way of assessing cognitive control. They use the marshmallow test in the New Zealand study, but what they found was that disability is an independent dimension in life success. Think about it, being able to pay attention to the thing that matters to me most right now and not be distracted. That's a challenged asset these days and it's one that kids are just not learning because the technology is systematically destroying it. I think that we need to be more intentional about helping our kids with these abilities.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:50:55] The marshmallow test for people that don't know. This was essentially they put a marshmallow in front of a little kid and they said, “Hey, if you eat it now, you eat it now. But if you wait until I get back from the other room, I have to make a phone call or whatever, I'll be back in five minutes, then you can have two marshmallows.” And some kids, they just sat there and waited. Other kids ate it right away. And other kids --and these are so funny-- these kids, they'd come back --they were filming them of course-- and there'd be a kid who was looking down at the floor singing and they'd go, “What are you doing?” And he goes, “Oh, well if I don't look at the marshmallow, I won't be tempted to eat it.” And these sort of coping strategies where they knew they wanted it and they knew they had that impulse and they were having trouble controlling it, but they came up probably in the moment with the equivalent of covering your ears and saying, LALALA, because they could distract their brain because they knew they wanted to do that. And then if you extrapolate that over 30 more years, you find that they're able to do that with investing, spending money that they earn, relationships, people skills. Fascinating.
Daniel Goleman: [00:51:57] Well, in that study, those studies were done at Stanford in the preschool. They track the kids down 14 years later when they're about to graduate high school. And they found the kids who waited compared to the ones who gobbled it on the spot, had a 210 point advantage on their SAT out of 14,000.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:52:13] That's a lot.
Daniel Goleman: [00:52:14] I told this to the people at Princeton that make up the SAT. They were astounded. They said, “That's bigger than the difference we see between kids whose parents had only elementary school education and kids where a parent has an advanced degree.” They said it was stunning and these were all the children of kids, you know, people at Stanford graduate students and faculty.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:52:34] That's amazing. How do we get our kids to go for the two marshmallows instead of the one? That's the question.
Daniel Goleman: [00:52:41] What you do is you say, “Finish your homework before you get your Xbox out.”
Jordan Harbinger: [00:52:47] And you enforce that.
Daniel Goleman: [00:52:48] You help them delay gratification and you reinforce it.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:52:53] That makes sense. Yeah. It sounds so simple and yet here we are.
Daniel Goleman: [00:52:58] Well, it's so tempting to just--Your kid is bugging you and just say, “Oh, look, watch cartoons on this iPhone.” So, we have to do it to ourselves too.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:53:09] I'm worried about it because I've got to lead by example and it's not going to be easy. “Eat your green beans and, and pay attention. Read your book.” “But Dad, you're on your phone.” “Okay. You got me there.” “You're playing Xbox, Dad.”
Daniel Goleman: [00:53:22] So, you start with self-awareness.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:53:26] This is a fascinating subject for me. Why does conversation online degenerate to vitriol and sex right away and violence and things like that? We see this--Your hypothesis or maybe this was something that you'd picked out that that's actually settled science. I don't know. We're not getting feedback from the other person's face and emotions. So we're not calibrating our behavior.
Daniel Goleman: [00:53:51] It's called cyber disinhibition.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:53:52] Ooh. I liked that happens
Daniel Goleman: [00:53:53] And it happens because the brain is designed, remember for face-to-face interaction, that's how evolution saw it.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:54:02] Cyber disinhibition.
Daniel Goleman: [00:54:03] When we go cyber when we're online, we don't see the other person. In fact, all we do is we may be typing something and when you type something and you have no feedback loop, there's no inhibition to the amygdala and to the emotional impulse circuitry. So, you will do or say things online that you would never do or say face-to-face. The reason being face-to-face, you get those continual signals, like don't say that, don't do that. It's going to screw up the interaction.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:54:37] And I feel this happened almost in real-time, although probably not quick enough. If I'm talking with you, for example, we were talking I think before the show and you said something like, “Well this is just a kind of a bunch of bullshit.” Well, if we were saying that about let's say Dave's idea and then we noticed Dave winced, we would probably then soften it.
Daniel Goleman: [00:54:56] That's one of those signals of course.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:54:58] We would say, ”Oh well, but maybe it's not bullshit. Maybe I just don't understand it.” But if you're typing online, you just doubled down. “Not only is it bullshit, but the person who invented this is an idiot.”
Daniel Goleman: [00:55:07] The reason is that you're being driven by your own amygdala and all of those emotion circuits and there's no prefrontal cortex getting other signals saying, “Hey, cool it, you know, you're going to screw up the relationship.” It's called an amygdala hijack. You do or say something that you regret later.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:55:28] That sounds very, very familiar.
Daniel Goleman: [00:55:30] We all do it.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:55:31] Story of my life. Yeah. There's a couple of different layers of this. There is social awareness, what we sense about others and then social facility, which seems like it builds on social awareness. It's what we do with the info that we sense and people who are really good with that tend to be more successful in business and in social situations. What about people who are really bad at it? There's all these sort of folks that seem to—
Daniel Goleman: [00:56:01] Last week, I was talking to the Deans of Admissions of the Ivy leagues but also Stanford and MIT and the Director of Admissions at MIT said, “What do we do with people who are basically on the spectrum who are brilliant, amazing coding systems thinking or whatever, but very awkward with people.” And what I said was, “Well, you know, they'll have brilliant careers, but there'll be different kinds of careers. They won't be team leaders, they won't be a rise in the executive ranks as leaders, but they'll be fantastic as individual contributors.” That's a way of letting people excel according to their talent profile and I really believe in that.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:56:47] I think it's important because I think in many ways people on the autism spectrum--I would love to reframe autism was almost a superpower for individual contributions some of the time because I think it gets people often who are on the spectrum, they'll write in pretty discouraged because they feel defective. And yet we see tremendous contributions from people who--
Daniel Goleman: [00:57:08] And of course they can be highly effective. I think a problem in our society is that we judge people according to criteria, which may not be apt. You said you didn't do so well on tests, so you felt when you became a lawyer that you know that your strategy of working very hard in college wasn't going to work versus those people were also smart as hell and worked hard.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:57:34] Right my competitive advantages were gone.
Daniel Goleman: [00:57:37] But then emotional intelligence comes along as a concept. And you see, “Oh, there's this whole other human skillset that's really valuable.” And I think people who are fantastic at understanding systems or at coding or some other talent should feel really good about that because they're outstanding in their domain of excellence. And the rest of it is just something to adjust to. And we all have that, we all have a profile of strengths and weaknesses across the range of emotional intelligence, for example. And we adjust to it. You find it something that if you're lucky, that that lets you take advantage of your strengths.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:58:16] People who have a high level of social awareness and also a high level of social facility have a lot of what you term mindsight or a strong ability to exercise or utilize mindsight which is peering inside someone else's mind to deduce their thoughts --which sounds a lot like mind reading, but I think what we're talking about here is, “Oh, well Dave felt sad when we said that his ideas were BS, and so now he's affected by this.” We're looking at face, voice, eyes--But if you lack this, your mind blind. And how common is this?
Daniel Goleman: [00:58:53] Since I wrote those books may be in social intelligence, I've seen research from the University of Chicago that identifies three different kinds of empathy. One of which is what you're talking about. It's cognitive empathy. It's understanding how the other person thinks, understanding their perspective, understanding how they see the world, understanding technically the mental models that they use to divide the world and so on. And once you have that you can be very effective in communicating. I mean, you know how to put something as well as understand it. A separate kind of empathy, which actually has to do with the social brain. The first has to do with neocortex is emotional empathy. You know, how they're feeling. You pick it up because you feel it yourself. You feel it instantly and that makes it easier to have rapport. It's important in the helping professions, in sales and in a lot of situations. Then the third kind is empathic concern. Empathic concern is based in the mammalian caretaking circuitry. It means that I not only know how you think and how you feel, but I actually care about you. It's a parent's love for a child, but you have to see how that morphs into other relationships. Like friends who really care about each other or a couple or a parent or at work, you know, coworkers with each other or boss. The bosses we love as opposed to the bosses we hate are people who have this ability.
Jordan Harbinger: [01:00:36] We hear about the dark triad and people misusing this type of emotional facility. Talk about this a little bit. We've talked about this on the show. Joe Navarro, Gavin de Becker, I don't know if these names ring a bell, but they study things like fear of manipulation.
Daniel Goleman: [01:00:50] Yeah. So the dark triad is Machiavellianism, sociopathy, and I forget what the third is. You must know it.
Jordan Harbinger: [01:01:00] Don't actually shoot. I had it written down earlier and it's gone.
Daniel Goleman: [01:01:03] Anyway, it's people who are manipulative and what it means is they can be very good at the first two kinds of empathy and don't have the third. They don't care about you at all. They just care about what they can get from you and how they can manipulate you. And they may be very successful in the workplace. You know, there's a pattern called the kissed up kicked down where the people who have power over you, you're very charming, and the people who don't give a damn about, you're really not charming at all. People hate you, but you can get ahead because the people who will make decisions about promoting you think you're great. And that's just one form of the dark triad takes and the inoculation against it is empathic concern. And let me say more, I've gotten very interested recently in purpose and meaning, a sense of values, ethics. And I'd say that people who are in the dark triad spectrum if you will, don't have any of that. They don't care. They only care about themselves.
Jordan Harbinger: [01:02:04] This makes sense. I was going to guess that it was narcissism and it totally is.
Daniel Goleman: [01:02:09] That's narcissism.
Jordan Harbinger: [01:02:11] It seems so obvious. I didn't even bring it up. Narcissism, psychopathy, and Machiavellianism. So Machiavellianism, I think psychopathy, people know, narcissism is so overused, maybe people know even less
Daniel Goleman: [01:02:23] There is a big defect in narcissists is that they lack empathy. They actually don't care about other people. They can pick up the signals they need to, but they don't have the wellbeing of the other person in mind.
Jordan Harbinger: [01:02:37] And people who are firmly in the dark triad, they're studying emotions too to use people to manipulate people.
Daniel Goleman: [01:02:45] Exactly.
Jordan Harbinger: [01:02:46] And I feel like this is the other side of this other coin. Going back to the autism thing--Autism by the way, not a dark triad, just to be very clear here.
Daniel Goleman: [01:02:57] Thank you.
Jordan Harbinger: [01:02:58] I don't want people to be upset. But a lot of people who listen to this show in the past, I've gotten hundreds or thousands of letters from people that say, “Hey, I have Asperger’s and I listened to your show a lot because I have to manually learn emotional cues.
Daniel Goleman: [01:03:14] And by the way, that's the helpful workaround for people who don't pick it up naturally is to learn, “Well, I should look the person in the eye, shake the on firmly.” In other words, you need to be more intentional about social interaction than most people do.
Jordan Harbinger: [01:03:33] And I feel bad because they--I've got a cousin who's on the autism spectrum and his father, my cousin often has to say, “Hey, don't stand in front of me when I'm talking and you're talking because you're blocking me out.” And it must be so much information to remember. I mean, think about this. If I'm looking at you because I know that's polite and there's somebody next to me and I have to remember not to put my hand up in front of their face and lean in front of them while talking and holding a conversation. It just seems like you're juggling everything that you would normally keep in your pocket.
Daniel Goleman: [01:04:03] Usually the subcortical brain does all of that without having to think about it. Imagine if you have to think about it.
Jordan Harbinger: [01:04:11] That's what I'm saying.
Daniel Goleman: [01:04:13] It's a lot of things to keep track of.
Jordan Harbinger: [01:04:14] It's like instead of carrying everything you have in a backpack and walking around New York, you've got to keep everything in your hands and in order to use your phone--You're literally juggling things.
Daniel Goleman: [01:04:26] You know, there's a little miracle going on right now and it's this, the sentences we're speaking contain and are ruled by and directed by syntactic rules, which we couldn't even annunciate or articulated if we're forced to nor before we started out on a sentence, what words were we going to string together in that sentence. That's the same kind of miracle. And if we had to keep track of that, you know we couldn't even speak.
Jordan Harbinger: [01:04:54] It would be possible. One thing that my cousin can't do is understand or process sarcasm. And you wrote about sarcasm and it really lit this up for me because sarcasm is so nuanced. I've lived abroad a lot and a lot of people from other countries who are English as a second language, they just don't really get the sarcastic jokes that people are making in English because there's so much going on with sarcasm. Are you able to explain the brain activity, what's going on here? Because it--not really--none. Not anymore. It's been a minute. I think the idea from the book was that I can say, “Oh yeah, I really want some coffee at 9:00 p.m.” And somebody who doesn't process sarcasm will go if they're really nice, make me a nice steaming cup of coffee at 9:00 p.m. and I'm thinking, “What the heck are you doing?”
Daniel Goleman: [01:05:46] Because he didn't pick up the tone of voice.
Jordan Harbinger: [01:05:48] Right, the tone of voice, the fact that nobody wants caffeine that late because it's bad for you. And the way I'm indicating that was the tonality that I was saying it in, maybe even the speed, the cadence, everything, all that has to be processed manually by somebody who is maybe has Asperger's.
Daniel Goleman: [01:06:05] I give talks around the world and I've found the jokes that work here do not work in other words.
Jordan Harbinger: [01:06:13] Oh yeah. Brutal and you find that out when you're on stage and nobody laughs and you go, hmm.
Daniel Goleman: [01:06:22] I have a friend who was giving a lecture in Japan and he was going around giving the same lecture in different places. And he had these jokes that he had used successfully in the States and nobody would laugh in Japan and he asked his translator about it. And then the next time everybody laughed at his jokes and he said, “Why did I laugh interested?” He said, “Oh, I told them now you should laugh.”
Jordan Harbinger: [01:06:48] Hey look, I think that's a great idea. “Hey, they're supposed to laugh at the following points of my talk and at the end they're supposed to stand up and clap for five seconds.”
Daniel Goleman: [01:06:57] In the old days, with the studio audience, they'd have a sign, applause--
Jordan Harbinger: [01:07:01] Yeah. Applause, laughter, laugh, track. And if they didn't get enough laughs, they had a prerecorded set. Yeah, I found it fascinating at partners, romantic partners, people that live together start to look like each other and I always thought that was BS. But the way you explain it makes a lot of sense, which is that since we have synchronicity, we have good rapport with each other, we start to synchronize, which means we're using the same emotions, which since emotions are culturally anyway, maybe a little dependent, but we're using the same facial muscles, we're using them often at the same time, often in the same amount because we're spending so much time with them. So we're watching the same funny thing together and laughing the same amount because that's how you keep rapport and build rapport. So, we actually developed similar facial wrinkles and lines. That is fascinating.
Daniel Goleman: [01:07:46] And I think you should say how they figured that out--
Jordan Harbinger: [01:07:48] How did they figure that out?
Daniel Goleman: [01:07:49] There is an experiment where they had people match pictures, male and female. Isn't that right? I think I remember--
Jordan Harbinger: [01:07:56] I can't remember actually.
Daniel Goleman: [01:07:59] It turned out that people who didn't know any of the people that are evaluating were able to match couples because of this.
Jordan Harbinger: [01:08:10] Oh, so you say who's this person's partner and they just find somebody--
Daniel Goleman: [01:08:13] I think that’s how they did it.
Jordan Harbinger: [01:08:14] That's incredible.
Daniel Goleman: [01:08:15] You know what? I'm not 100 percent.
Jordan Harbinger: [01:08:16] Yeah, we'll have to look that up.
Daniel Goleman: [01:08:17] Let’s cut that out.
Jordan Harbinger: [01:08:18] Yeah. Nah, we can just leave it in it. Hey, if that's BS, let us know. Somewhere there's a researcher working on this right now that's listening to this and they'll let us know. Now if we can find out why people start to look like their pets, I'll be really impressed. I don't think that's the same thing. I don't think it's the same concepts.
Daniel Goleman: [01:08:34] Might be.
Jordan Harbinger: [01:08:35] Might be, you never know. Why do we think more clearly when we're in a good mood?
Daniel Goleman: [01:08:40] When we're in a bad mood, what's happening is our amygdala and the network is saying to us, “Hey, there's something important that you should be thinking about or paying attention to.” So it diminishes the ranger of bandwidth of attention for everything else. The point of emotions in evolution, it’s thought is to make us pay attention to what's important right now. So if you're in a good mood, actually from a neuro point of view, a good mood is the absence of negative emotion. That's what a good mood looks on the brain. And so if you have a negative emotion, I'm really anxious, I'm really angry. It kidnaps your attention.
Jordan Harbinger: [01:09:29] That actually makes a lot of sense because that's why things that inhibit areas of our brain tend to make us feel good, like alcohol and marijuana because they're turning off the areas of the brain that might have the negative or turning down the areas that might have negative emotions.
Daniel Goleman: [01:09:45] This is something a little surprising. There is a feel-good network in the brain --the dopamine circuitry-- but if you look at people in different moods with an MRI, it's the absence of negative emotions that people will tell you they're in the best mood.
Jordan Harbinger: [01:10:05] When I was reading about this in the book, I remember going--I think I had to go to the dentist right after that. And I thought, “Well, I'm going to make damn sure to joke around and hang out a little bit before the treatment because I want them in a good mood so that they're thinking clearly if they're going to start drilling around in my teeth.” And I think that's a good practical to have. “Oh, you're going in for surgery. Make sure your doctor likes you. Make sure they associate you with positive experience.”
Daniel Goleman: [01:10:34] Well, you know, it works the other way. There's a famous study. It was in the journal of the American Medical Association about doctors who were sued and doctors who aren't. It turned out that the ones who are not sued weren't any more adept at medicine. They made the same number of errors and so on, but they had better relationships. They joked around with their patients, they had rapport, they took time to be sure they answered all their questions. The other doctors didn't and those were the ones who didn't joke around and so on are the ones that got sued
Jordan Harbinger: [01:11:10] That makes perfect sense. Nobody wants to sue somebody that they like but maybe it goes a little deeper than that.
Daniel Goleman: [01:11:15] I think it may not.
Jordan Harbinger: [01:11:16] It may not. Maybe it's that simple, in which case it's the easiest practical of the whole show, which is, “Hey, spend five minutes making sure—"
Daniel Goleman: [01:11:25] Well, what they found was it took about two and a half or three and a half minutes more for doctors to establish that rapport, but it was certainly worth it. They also got better compliance. Patients would actually take their meds. They would do what the doctor told them.
Jordan Harbinger: [01:11:39] Brilliant. Oh man, I love that there are different domains of EQ or emotional intelligence. Being aware of one's emotions, self-awareness, we talked about that a little bit, managing emotions, appropriate emotions for context, beyond that though motivating oneself, self-control.
Daniel Goleman: [01:11:57] Well, lately I've been folding motivation into self-management. It’s a version of achieving your goals, growth, mindset, all of that. Those are ways to manage yourself.
Jordan Harbinger: [01:12:08] That makes sense. And then those are the kinds of things we talk about primarily here on the show. And then, of course, the last but not least, recognizing emotions in others and or empathy. And that might be the hardest one for a lot of folks
Daniel Goleman: [01:12:24] Maybe, but maybe not. There's some really interesting research on this in the workplace and it turns out that on most tests of emotional intelligence, and there are many now--Women as a group tend to do better than men on empathy except among top 10 percent performers. There are no gender differences. Men, by the way, tend to be better at managing upsets and so on than women in many tasks. And that disappears too. So the men are as empathic as the women, the women are as steady and centered as the men.
Jordan Harbinger: [01:12:59] That is surprising because it goes against the gender stereotypes that we're so used to especially here in North America.
Daniel Goleman: [01:13:06] Well, to me it says that it just underscores the fact that these are learned and learnable skills. You can learn to be more empathic. You can learn to manage your upsets better
Jordan Harbinger: [01:13:19] If we're able to educate our ourselves and our brains and have plasticity when it comes to that--That brings your earlier point, which is that temperament is not destiny. So naturally anxious or shy, people can train their brains.
Daniel Goleman: [01:13:33] We know that for a fact, and this is why I'm trying to get programs in emotional intelligence into schools. And by the way, it has taken off. It's actually--
Jordan Harbinger: [01:13:46] Good, it's about time, right?
Daniel Goleman: [01:13:48] I think it's past time.
Jordan Harbinger: [01:13:51] I think that these skills, you even mentioned in your work as well, that there's evidence that people who have better social skills are better able to handle things like anger of course, and violent crime tends to go down, abuse patterns can get broken, social intelligence, social skills. We can actually correct a significant portion of societal ills by giving people skills that they might not have developed because of their upbringing.
Daniel Goleman: [01:14:23] There was a meta-analysis of the school programs, more than a quarter of a million students --some with the programs, some without-- and found that all antisocial behaviors, decreased violence in schools, bullying, dropping out, substance abuse, all of them went down. Prosocial behavior, I like school, I feel someone there cares about me, I enjoy going to school, I'm not going to come to class. And academic achievement scores went up by 11 percent so it's a situation where if you give the kids the skill to manage, for example--I'll tell you a story. New Haven, Connecticut middle school, these 12-year-old boys are going to gym class and the three kids, the kid in front of this pudgy kid, not very athletic, the other two are jocks and the jocks are making fun of the kid, the pudgy kid. And one of them says to the kid in a very sarcastic tone of voice, “Oh, so you think you're going to play soccer,” like dripping with disgust. And the pudgy kid stops, takes a breath, turns around and like this could easily turn into a fight. And he says to him, “Yeah, I'm going to try to play soccer, but I'm not nearly as good as you are. What I'm good at is art. Show me anything I can draw it really well. Someday I like to be as good as you are at soccer.” And at that kid was just putting down, comes up, puts his arm around him and says, “Oh, you're not so bad. I'll show you a thing or two.” That was called a put up. That kid learned it in social-emotional learning. They call it social development there. And he learned it as a strategy for handling a tense situation. So kids love this stuff because it helps them get along with their peers. You know, kids after age five, six, seven, stop caring so much about their family and care, everything about the other kids--their friendships. Anything that's going to help kids with the melodramas of childhood, which always involve other kids are going to help them through life and that's what they're finding.
Jordan Harbinger: [01:16:35] I feel like I've used a lot of this, these put-ups through my whole life to survive certain situations when I was doing security or, or working with intelligence stuff or government or even just at work going, “Uh-oh, this person who's in a higher position than me feels threatened. I need to lower my status in their eyes in a way that's not so low that you've used me as pathetic or not useful but also mitigates the threat. And then he wants to help me.” Like there's all this kind of social chess happening, but it doesn't have to be that complex. But the earlier you learn this as a kid, the better off you'll probably be as an adult.
Daniel Goleman: [01:17:10] The formula for put-ups as simple. You say something positive about the other person that you believe and something positive about yourself. That's all it is.
Jordan Harbinger: [01:17:19] It sounds like something only kids would use. And yet it's something adults--
Daniel Goleman: [01:17:23] I think it changes any social chemistry.
Jordan Harbinger: [01:17:26] Absolutely. Daniel, thank you. This has been incredibly interesting. I really, really appreciate it.
Daniel Goleman: [01:17:29] Quite a pleasure. Thank you, Jordan.
Jordan Harbinger: [01:17:33] Great big thank you to Daniel Goleman. We’ll be linking to his books in the show notes. Of course, his most famous work is probably still Emotional Intelligence. That's just the seminal work on the fact that it's not all about IQ, which now seems like common sense. You know, everybody kind of knows that, Jason, but it's not--Back then it was what? There's a whole other set of people skills and it turns out people who are good at these go further in life than people who can just do math really well or have good cognitive abilities. Who knew? Now, it's like, “Oh yeah,” now if you're not aware of that, it's like, “Where you born under a rock?” I mean, this really did turn everything upside down before that people skills were like sort of this unquantifiable mystery. They're still unquantifiable in many ways. They're just not as much of a mystery. People are paying attention to that stuff now, but when this book came out, it was like, “Holy cow. There's a whole thing where people aren't just weirdos that look at a calculator all day.” You know it's, it's very, very interesting how this shook up not only the self-help industry but business, science, research. I mean, it really was a turning point. We're going to look back at this book and it's going to be around for 50 more years at least.
[01:18:38] On that note, we're teaching you how to connect with great people and manage relationships using systems and tiny habits, speaking to people's skills over at our Six-Minute Networking course, which is free at jordanharbinger.com/course. And I know you'll do it later, right? But the problem with kicking the can down the road is that you can't make up for lost time. When it comes to relationships, when it comes to networking, the number one mistake I see people make is postponing this and not digging the well before you get thirsty. Once you need relationships, you are far too late to make them. Ever gotten a call from somebody. “Hey, old buddy, old friend. I need you to join my MLM.” Yeah, we know how that feels. Don't be that guy. These drills are designed to take a few minutes per day. This is the stuff I wish I knew decades ago. This is not fluff. This is crucial and you can find it all for free at jordanharbinger.com/course. By the way, most of the guests here on the show, they subscribe to the course. They've done it, they're doing the newsletter. Come join us. We'd love to have you. And speaking of building relationships, tell them your number one takeaway here from Daniel Goleman. I'm at @JordanHarbinger on both Twitter and Instagram, and there's a video of this interview on our YouTube channel at jordanharbinger.com/youtube. I read everything, especially reviews that I see on Apple Podcasts. So, if you'd like to help other people find a good show in my humble opinion, go to jordanharbinger.com/subscribe and we'll show you how it's done.
[01:19:58] This show is produced in association with PodcastOne and this episode was co-produced by Jason DeFillippo and Jen Harbinger, show notes and worksheets by Robert Fogarty, music by Evan Viola, and I'm your host Jordan Harbinger. Our advice and opinions, and those of our guests are their own. Do your own research before implementing anything you hear on the show. And remember, we rise by lifting others. The fee for this show is that you share it with friends when you find something useful, and I hope that's in every single episode. So please share the show with those you love and even those you don't. In the meantime, do your best to apply what you hear on the show, so you can live what you listen, and we'll see you next time.
[01:20:36] A lot of people ask me which podcasts I listened to and recommend, and I've been friends with Pat Flynn of Smart Passive Income for a long time. And Pat, you're joining me here today. Thank you for that. You've got episode 377 of Smart Passive Income Retail Arbitrage. And I remember when I saw this, I literally said to you, “Wait a minute, people are making money, buying and reselling items from stores on Amazon. I don't even, how does that even work?“
Pat Flynn: [01:21:00] Yeah. I mean quick rundown. We talked about this in the episode with some special guests who come on, but there's literally an app that you could download that you could take with you to the store to scan different items and it'll show you how much these items are being sold for on Amazon. And a lot of times these businesses, these physical stores are clearing out their things. And so you can buy something at, you know, 10 percent 20 percent the price that it's actually selling for Amazon. And of course, people will pay for it for that price because they don't have access to those products. And it's amazing. I know some people who are making over six figures a year doing this and it's kind of like how Gary Vee's talking a lot about going to yard sales and stuff, but I think it's a lot easier and more profitable.
Jordan Harbinger: [01:21:36] I've heard about it. I think I've read about this where people who literally live in RVs or just driving around small-town America, they'll go to a Walmart in like BF, Kentucky, scan a bunch of items, find it. They could make $600 if they ship all of those this week or something like that. And then they sell them on Amazon and they're just driving around the country doing this.
Pat Flynn: [01:21:58] Yeah, I mean I even tried this out myself. I bought like a little popcorn maker that was on sale for $15 and I saw that it was being sold for on Amazon for 40 and I just bought the whole lot and then I shipped them to Amazon and they sold right away because you don't just pick any products. There's a specific method and certain ranges of how things are selling that you have to pick. And we talk about this in the episode too, so I hope you all kind of join in and listen, and thanks for letting me shout that out.
Jordan Harbinger: [01:22:22] It's such a crazy way to make money, and that's episode 377 Smart Passive Income with Pat Flynn. We'll link to it in the show notes and you can find Smart Passive Income anywhere you listen to podcasts.
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