Shay Carl on Wealth, Parenting, and the Future of Video


“Money was never the goal; it was freedom. I just wanted to be able to not go to work.” – Shay Carl

This is another special in-betweenisode. It’s a little shorter than the normal long-form episodes, and it features a Q&A with Shay Carl (@shaycarl).

If you missed our first interview, Shay’s story is incredible. He was a manual laborer for ages and uploaded his first YouTube video while on break from his job.

Flash forward to today:

  • His SHAYTARDS channel now has roughly 2.3 BILLION views. Celebs like Steven Spielberg have appeared alongside Shay and his family.
  • He co-founded Maker Studios, which sold to Disney for nearly $1 billion.
  • He has been married 13 years and has five kids.
  • He has lost more than 100 pounds since his overweight peak.

This time around, he answers listener questions in the way only he can, such as:

  • How to grow a YouTube following from scratch.
  • The future of ad revenue and sponsorship.
  • How he balances capturing the moment vs. experiencing the moment.
  • His greatest obstacles in life.
  • Lessons learned as a father.
  • And much, much more.

If you only have 5 minutes, learn how having more money changed Shay’s life.

I also wanted to announce my new book, Tools of Titans (Barnes and Noble, Books-A-Million, Amazon). It’s the culmination of the last two years of this podcast. It’s made up of my favorite takeaways, the lessons I’ve learned, and the tools I’ve applied to my own life from all of the guests on this show, including some new guests you’ve not yet met.

Consider it the ultimate choose-your-own-adventure guide to optimizing your life — it’s got everything from finance to physical performance!

Please enjoy this round two with Shay Carl.


Want to hear another interview with Shay Carl? — Listen to his first appearance on the podcast. In this episode, we discuss the most important decisions in his life, stories he’s never shared before, and his favorite tips for creating on YouTube (stream below or right-click here to download):

This podcast is brought to you by Wealthfront. Wealthfront is a massively disruptive (in a good way) set-it-and-forget-it investing service led by technologists from places like Apple. It has exploded in popularity in the last two years and now has more than $2.5B under management. Why? Because you can get services previously limited to the ultra-wealthy and only pay pennies on the dollar for them, and it’s all through smarter software instead of retail locations and bloated sales teams.

Check out, take their risk assessment quiz, which only takes 2-5 minutes, and they’ll show you for free the exactly the portfolio they’d put you in. If you want to just take their advice and do it yourself, you can. Well worth a few minutes to explore:

This podcast is also brought to you by Vimeo Business. Vimeo Business has all of the prior benefits of Vimeo Pro, including VIP support. Whether you make videos for a living, run your own company, or simply want to amp up your video marketing, Vimeo Business is here to help. It has more than 280 million creators and viewers worldwide and makes it easier to share your videos with a global audience and connect with professional video makers to bring your stories to life.

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QUESTION(S) OF THE DAY: What was your favorite quote or lesson from this episode? Please let me know in the comments.

Scroll below for links and show notes…

Selected Links from the Episode

  • Connect with Shay Carl:

Twitter | Instagram | Facebook | YouTube

Show Notes

  • If Shay had to start from scratch today, does he think it would still be possible to create a business on YouTube? [08:05]
  • Is the daily vlogger space now oversaturated? [09:45]
  • Has Shay ever experienced detrimental effects in his personal life because of the time and commitment it takes to put out a daily vlog? [13:53]
  • What is the sustainable future of monetization for online content creators? [17:04]
  • What is the very best form of advertising? [20:37]
  • How did Shay feel telling the truth about alcoholism during his last appearance on this show? [24:12]
  • Shay’s safe and painless writing exercise for dealing with difficult truths. [26:33]
  • If Shay had two weeks to teach people how to tell better stories on YouTube, what would that course look like? [27:30]
  • Other than having better shoes, how has money changed Shay (if at all)? [30:40]
  • Shay talks about how he got out of debt and saved money — even when he was still broke. [35:25]
  • What does Shay do to overcome doubt? [37:30]

People Mentioned

Posted on: September 28, 2016.

The Tim Ferriss Show is generally the #1 business podcast on iTunes, and it was selected for iTunes' "Best of 2015." Each episode deconstructs world-class performers from eclectic areas (investing, sports, business, art, etc.) to extract the tactics, tools, and routines you can use. If you want to 10x your productivity, click here.

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11 comments on “Shay Carl on Wealth, Parenting, and the Future of Video

  1. I’m stoked about your new book! I had no idea although now I notice some hints from the past. You mentioned getting it as a gift and that’s great because it reminded be that I need to give my sister a belated b-day gift and this would be perfect. Just thought you might want to know that that subtle marketing psychology worked!!! Ha-ha. Love as always


  2. Hey Tim,

    Great podcast again with Shay, he’s THE MAN. Going off of the personal improvement theme, in one of your previous podcasts, you mention that Headspace is a great form of meditation for beginners. After doing a year of Headspace, what would your recommend as a next step in meditation?

    Can’t wait for the book!



  3. 7 mins 58 secs of promo til the podcast actually starts!! must be a world record. such a negative way to treat your audience and terrible marketing.


    • And then Tim isn’t even on the podcast. Seems incredibly arrogant to put out podcasts where you don’t even attend, assuming the audience will lap it up like an obedient dog.


  4. Wohoo…finally a new book…no need to think of birthday gifts for friends for a year. Keep up the great work Tim. I hope amazon India opens pre-orders for the physical book too!


  5. Hi Tim – a friend introduced me to your podcast by way of the Naval Ravikant interview, which was amazing and I’ve been checking out your podcast regularly ever since.

    Love the show. I have one request. Can you please address the gender imbalance of the interviewee selection?

    You had one woman firefighter, who was badass and inspiring. And there may have been others. Scrolling through your podcast listing, what’s visible is a great preponderance of men. I’ve noticed that women are most often mentioned as someone’s wife, girlfriend or fiancee. Does not pass the Bechtel test.

    There are many smart, accomplished, funny, pensive, ambitious women leaders you could host. I know you can find them.

    Thanks for listening and considering — and good luck for the continued success of your podcast.