30th of November 2015

Helping Joe, Episode 41


Tucker, Nils, and Charlie spend 2+ hours (Ep. 41 is Part 2) digging into Joe’s emotional issues and work habits. In this part, they show him why making 1,000+ pages of lists is a way to avoid action and how he can end his unproductive habits, go on job interviews (just like dates), find a good job, and live a better life.


You can click here (right click, then click save as) to download the episode directly.



This episode was sponsored by Criquet Shirts, a high quality clothing company that designs simple, comfortable, old-school polo shirts made from 100% organic cotton. They hooked Joe up with their polo shirts which are now the best shirts he owns. Go to and use the promo code MATE to get 20% off your order.


Joe’s Thoughts and Takeaways From This Episode:

Hey this is a running commentary of random thoughts, notes, and takeaways I had during or after this episode. – Joe

Beginning– Problem with my neighbor’s dog

I’m glad Charlie changed the pace here, made it more funny, but we probably should have stayed on that topic. This was funny but way off-topic and a little distracting.

@4:00 – Back to lists and we talk about books

“It’s a way to control the inner chaos, get it out of your head. “ – Nils

I took the inner emotional turmoil or whatever the fuck it was, put it on paper or the computer and now it’s just a chaotic mess of 1,000+ pages.

I am a pretty bad judge of figuring out what is truly important. I just think everything that has any value at all or might one day have some value in the unforeseeable future is still important, but it’s fucking not.

And that’s the point they keep trying to drill and hammer home again and again. If this stuff is truly important, you will remember it or it will come back up later. If you forget about it, it wasn’t important.

But I still don’t get it here.

@7:00 – Talking about Mating Grounds

Important things to do for the immediate future are maybe 1-2 pages, but I have 100+ pages on Mating Grounds stuff I want to do in one Workflowy tab.

Get rid of it all and don’t start new lists.

“You’ll fill that time with something. You will fill it by facing the issues you are running from.” – Tucker

Wrong. I think I’ll just fill it with other ways to distract myself and get it out of my head.

“This is what we mean when we talk about engaging with your emotions. You have detached yourself from your emotions.” – Tucker

“I think you would have anxiety about any job you got. And I think you will have anxiety about the process of finding a job.” – Tucker

This is prophetic because yea I do have fear and am afraid and have all this weird anxiety about getting jobs that don’t even matter, like working at a fucking furniture store. This is something I noticed after this episode when I started applying for jobs, trying to get an interview.

Getting a job is a choice. Being homeless is a choice. You have a choice.

@11:00 – Just jump into the water analogy

But what does “jumping in” mean in this context?
– Just jumping into the next place that offers me a job?
– Shotgunning my resume?
– Applying to any sales job and hoping it works out?
I know it’s doing more that I’ve done or not doing what I’ve done (making lists). Is it just to go out, call places, show up, whatever and ask for a job? I should have asked him that here.

Tucker made the point that I should just jump in and get it over with instead of doing this a little bit at a time which to be honest is what I have been doing these last 3 episodes.

I haven’t been doing all that much to find a job, just barely what Charlie and Nils tell me to do. And I feel guilty about that because it’s a waste of their time and people’s time listening to this. I can’t keep doing this.

“When Charlie has given you assignments, you slapdash it together inside an hour right before the episode.” – Nils

Yea I feel guilty about this like I’m wasting their time, wasting listeners’s time. Why am I not doing this?

“The only person being robbed is not those guys and not us. [It’s you.]” – Tucker

He keeps connecting this to my dad but I don’t see how this fits.

“The only difference between him and you is that you are taking [control, action, doing stuff] away from yourself and you are putting it in lists.” – Tucker

We talk about my dad regurgitating Fox News and Nils kinda put the pieces together for me more clearly here.

“Joe, you are a skeptical, cynical millennial who regurgitates information the internet. That is a 1 to 1 comparison.” – Nils

True, so true. Great, now I’m my dad who I am repulsed by. Now wtf do I do?

@17:00 – Bucket lists

I didn’t want to delete my dreams / bucketlist Workflowy

“If you really wanted to do it, you wouldn’t need a list for it. A bucket list is NOT everything that might be cool that you could do some day. That is not a bucket list.”
– Nils

“A bucket list is 70 items, they are very short, and THEY REQUIRE ACTION.” – Tucker

Yea most of my bucket list is lists and notes and research about each bucket list item, not short, simple actions. And it’s all stuff that I think would be cool to do, not that I absolutely have to do or that are really important. It’s funny because a lot of it is other people’s lists too or at least a lot of listy articles from the interest with photoshopped pictures.

“It’s trash and you don’t use it. I know it’s useless because YOU DON’T USE IT. The purpose [of the list] is to get the voices to stop, to get it out of your head.” – Nils

Yea that’s true and I’m figuring this out as we go along in the podcast. Most of this stuff I never use so what’s the point of keeping it?

“You are here because you have a real problem… You have a better idea of what to do to have a successful life [more than how to be successful with women], but you still can’t turn it into action.” – Tucker

I don’t know. I disagree because still feel lost.

I know what a good life looks like, but I still don’t see a path to getting there. I know we drew up the $80,000 goal, but I’ve never even made ½ that number. I don’t know the path to 80K. Even if I do get into a great sales job, I still feel like I’ll fuck it up or won’t be able to perform.

“You have the fear standing in the way and not feeling like you deserve it.” – Nils

@19:00 – Choice to make here

“Are you going to produce another 1,000 lists or are you going to make a life?”

I hate how Tucker over-exaggerates here and boils my life down to one thing, these lists, because it’s not true.

I have a problem. He’s right. But in the last 3 years I have been able to do stuff and get shit done at different point in my life. It’s not just these stupid lists. I’ve done shit too! And Charlie & Nils, backed me up on past episodes about this.

Tucker’s life comparison here is pretty good. He didn’t want to stop fucking random big-titted skanks, but to live a better, more productive life he had to change.

Same thing here. I use lists as a way to cope with emotions and I have to STOP DOING IT if I want to live a better life.

I guess his path was more difficult… 4 days a week of therapy for 4 years, but he was already successful by that point. I’m not successful like at all.

“We are just getting you ready to the point that you can start therapy. You did not have a life before this podcast.” – Tucker

“You know how we know that’s true? Because when we got into the work part of this podcast, you had forgotten half of it. It wasn’t even in your head. The life had disappeared.” – Nils

I don’t know what this means about me and my life though. I look at not mentioning past work to them, not bringing it up as moving on or maybe forgetting what I’ve done to focus on present stuff.

I’m still not sure why it’s such a big deal. I know I probably should have mentioned or talked about it to them but I just didn’t because I never needed to. There wasn’t a good, relevant time to bring it up. I just thought they wouldn’t really care or what I did was lame and not worthy of discussion.

@24:00 – Why haven’t I even been on 1 interview yet?

-Austin, TX is the lowest in unemployment in the country
-Every startup Tucker advises is desperate yet he won’t refer me to them. Fair enough I wouldn’t refer me either right now.
-There are 5,000 open sales jobs in Austin.
-I haven’t done 1 job interview.

“Just lists of places that he might at some point interview at.” – Nils

“It’s hard to go drinking in this city and not stumble upon somebody hiring… You have to AVOID jobs in this city.”
– Tucker

I didn’t talk about this on the podcast, but I drive around and see “Hiring” signs everywhere, way more than at home. It seems like half the city is hiring. And then I keep driving and I’ll be at a busy stop intersection and see homeless people on the corner of a busy street, even during hot 100 degree summer days, begging for change, and I get angry. Wtf! Everybody is hiring and needs help, just go get a job instead of sitting here in the heat trying to loose change. The jobs are out there, every one is hiring, just go work.

But I’m kind of doing the same thing here, just a different version of that. And that anger at bums on the street is probably self-hatred more than anything else because I’m doing the same thing as they are. There are all these jobs available and I’m not trying.

“You’re not lazy! You have 1,000 pages! Lazy is not the right word… That’s 3 or 4 books! Instead you just have lists.” – Tucker

“This is the result of the choices you have made. But if you use this as a stepping stone to move forward, it can be a good thing.” – Tucker

“The last time I blew up was the exact same thing [in Episode 7 ] except with women.” – Tucker

“You resist, resist, resist, and then the dam breaks. The issue that is holding you back is recognized, addressed, and then you are able to move forward… Instead of making lists, do action.” – Tucker

But I at least need a fucking to do list right?!

“A list for you is a way to avoid action. You need to avoid lists like the plague. Because if you don’t have a list, it means you have to act.” – Nils

I don’t know how to do this without making lists.

@29:00 – I won’t be a good fit for anyone

This doesn’t make sense. I don’t know why I say this.

“Just like you’re not a good fit for any women either. So why even try?” – Tucker

“Why don’t you let them decide? Why do you weed yourself out?” – Charlie

“You can’t be rejected if you don’t put yourself out there. Can’t be rejected if you don’t apply.” – Nils

Nils explains how this is pretty much the same way I treated problems dating women where I was asking, “What are the steps? What do I have to do?” I remember asking that multiple times earlier in the podcast.

But the problem isn’t knowing what to do, it’s just getting out of my own way.

“I’ll make the list then the right criteria then the job will just happen.” – Nils

“You are looking for a recipe with no chance of failure at the end.” – Charlie

“You were taking whatever you could get in relationships.” – Nils

Yea and that’s how I feel sometimes about taking a job because I don’t have anybody knocking on my door, nobody knows who I am or what I’ve done, and the stuff I did was a long time ago and I haven’t done it recently, And in this role with Mating Grounds I haven’t done as much as I wanted to. What I’ve done in the past isn’t that impressive. I should take what I can get and build up from that. I just need to get something first.

“Vulnerability is the key to putting yourself out there to someone looking for an employee and is the key to getting a job. It’s vulnerability. Your fear of being rejected and hurt has put a giant roadblock in front of any progress you could make.” – Nils

Oh, ok, now it’s pretty clear how this is the same problem as dating women. It’s different on the edges and in the outcomes, but the getting in my own way and not moving forward in each case is the same. I’m not doing what I need to be doing here for the same reasons that I wasn’t doing well with women earlier.

“It creates a shit ton of anxiety that you manage by making lists to prevent being vulnerable and hack it.” – Nils

@33:00 – Tucker offers a compromise

He said to send a copy of all my lists, all 1,000+ pages to Tucker, Charlie, and Nils, then delete everything. Then they give it back if I really need anything.

This was a brilliant suggestion.

“If you do this [send to them, then delete], you are going to be really anxious for a week and then you will alleviate that anxiety by …” – Tucker

I was making a list here about not making lists. This was pretty funny.

“You have to listen and engage. This is the problem you had with women. You don’t engage with them.” – Nils


“… you will be super anxious for a week or two. You’ll get less anxious. You’ll start going on job interviews and get a job. Then in 3-6 months we will bring this up and you will never have once actually needed something from here.” – Tucker

I don’t see this happening. It’s so hard not to making fucking lists.

@36:00 – “What was the best use of going back to these notes?” – Charlie

I couldn’t come up with answer here. I’m glad Charlie asked this. It was pretty clear that I never use these notes.

“You create the list but you don’t go back to reference it.” – Charlie

“The list isn’t about reference or information. That’s what I’ve been saying for two hours.” – Tucker

“21 pages about investing! You don’t have any money!” – Tucker

“The things that you do read come from external sources of recommendation. When we tell you to read something, you fucking read it. When you stumble on something, it goes into a dark hole.” – Nils

I think that’s more an accountability. I have to read this because it is directly related to something I’m struggling with + I’m on this podcast so I better be doing what they tell me to do.

But yea he is kind of right here because at one time I had like 50 book lists of books to read that other people recommended. Like Tucker’s recommended reading list or Ryan Holiday’s, but I wouldn’t read those books. I would just save the lists to read someday when I had more time to organize them.

@42:00 – “These lists are a coping mechanism.” – Nils

Yea this is clear as day at this point because I don’t use them in any other way. I don’t use them for information. I don’t read them. I don’t bring them back up. I don’t reference them. I don’t process them. I don’t delete them or get rid fo them. ANY OF THEM. Maybe some todos here and there.

I just make them when I get stressed about something and then I feel better and then I file away the list and never use it or bring it back up again.

“We’re trying to get you up and forward and moving so that you’re able to figure these issues out with a therapist from a position of HAVING A JOB, and a set of friends, and a girlfriend… You are going to have to solve your problems. But we can help you see where the problems are and you can take action.” – Tucker

It feels different when looking for a job but it’s really not. It’s the same issues just mapped onto a different relationship type.

@45:00 – Important todos going forward.

Send those lists to Tucker, Charlie, and Nils, then delete them from computer. Put it all together, send to them, and then delete it. Get rid of everything.

“That’s your entry fee for the next podcast.” – Tucker

“Everybody has coping mechanisms for things that they struggle with. The problem that you have is that the coping mechanism that you have also obstructs action and progress. Some people use working out or smoking but they can still get shit done.” – Nils

Hahaha I have so many coping mechanisms: working out is a big one, reading, making books notes, eating burgers and pizza, and making fucking lists.

@46:00 – Tucker’s coping mechanism was books.

This was interesting. When I first visited Tucker’s apartment I thought it was awesome that he had all these books. That was the first thing I noticed and loved about his apartment. But I thought he just did it to look smart and signal that he was scholar or a learned gentleman. I never would have guessed that he had all these books as a coping mechanism.

“3 years ago it was impossible to think about to moving anywhere without my books.” – Tucker

@51:00 – Charlie opens up about why he chose the jobs he did

I never thought about why Charlie did this. I knew he wanted to be an entrepreneur but I never asked him why. It was really interesting to hear this from him and how it ties into what Tucker was saying.

“My dad was always around in groups, but I don’t really know him. He spent most of my childhood at work.” – Charlie

Wow. You can tell by his voice tone that he still feels fucked up or sad or something about this.

“So much of what we do as adults is solving the traumas that we suffered in early life.” – Tucker

“But you do need to be effective and build a life… You are a million miles ahead of where you were a year ago, but you have not done it in terms of being an effective man, but you could. This will be easier for you.” – Tucker

I do not see how this is easier. This seems way fucking harder, figuring out what I should do or what kind of job I should get, finding a career, making money. This doesn’t seem easier.

@55:00 – Sit with this, sit with the emotions

It will be painful to sit with this, the emotions. It will suck but you will understand, accept, and process it so you can move forward now… No more lists. That’s your only list left to make.” – Tucker

@56:00 – Go on an interview

The win for you here is getting an interview. Do this by the next podcast.

“Just like dates, Tinder, you need to send out X number of inquiries a day.” – Tucker

I left this podcast with a lot of anxiety because I don’t think I don’t know how I would do either of these. They seem pretty simple, I was actually motivated to lock up the lists and email them so I could get rid of them, but I don’t know how I’m going to get an interview in a week.

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