“If effectiveness is doing the right things, efficiency is doing things right.”
This is a special episode because it doesn’t focus on the lessons of one particular person. Instead, I explore the tips, tricks, and framework I’ve used to learn just about any skill.
This is the meta-skill of meta-learning, or learning how to learn.
I’m going to share techniques that can help you — even if you’re sub-par or a rote beginner — take the smartest first steps and use 80/20 analysis to accelerate your progress.
This is adapted from The 4-Hour Chef, which is the cookbook that’s not a cookbook — it’s a book on accelerated learning.
Without further ado, please enjoy this episode on meta-learning.
- Listen to it on iTunes.
- Stream by clicking here.
- Download as an MP3 by right-clicking here and choosing “save as.”
Want to hear another episode about accelerated learning? — Listen to my interview with Luis Von Ahn, the co-founder of Duolingo. In this episode, we discuss what 2-3 books and resources he’d recommend to entrepreneurs, language learning tips, early mentors and key lessons learned, and how to recruit and vet technical talent (stream below or right-click here to download):
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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
- The 4-Hour Chef: The Simple Path to Cooking Like a Pro, Learning Anything, and Living the Good Life by Timothy Ferriss
- Smart Design
- Burton Snowboards
- OXO Good Grips kitchenware
- The Objectified documentary
- The Holy Grail in Speed Training by Barry Ross, Dragon Door
- Efficient-Market Hypothesis (EMH)
- The Superinvestors of Graham-and-Doddsville by Warren E. Buffett, Columbia Business School
- Michael Phelps Freestyle Multi Angle Camera
- The Most Graceful Freestyle Swimming by Shinji Takeuchi
- Nootropics: An Ethical Discussion by Lilly Pham, Princeton Journal of Bioethics
- Raiding the Medicine Cabinet to Become Superhuman by Peter Rubin, Wired (about my use of desmopressin and other nootropics)
- Chinese Primer: Character Text by Ta-tuan Ch’en, Perry Link, Yih-jian Tai, and Hai-tao Tang
- Seikei Gakuen
- The Book of Five Rings by Miyamoto Musashi
- The Jouyou Kanji
- The Asahi Shimbun
- Acquisition of Japanese Kanji: Conventional Practice and Mnemonic Supplementation (my sexy Princeton senior thesis)
- Berlitz language learning
- Better Basketball videos by Rick Torbett
- Meta-learning allows us to mimic the world’s fastest learners to become world class — in just about anything — in six months or less. [06:05]
- When Dan Formosa created Smart Design, the extremes informed the mean, but not vice versa. [06:28]
- Sometimes it pays to model the outliers, not flatten them into averages. [08:06]
- WWWBS? (What would Warren Buffett say) about outliers and averages? [09:31]
- Just about everything you need to know about meta-learning can be understood — or at least observed — by watching these two videos. (Michael Phelps vs. Shinji Takeuchi) [12:06]
- The top one percent often succeed in spite of how they train, not because of it. [13:21]
- Shifting from frequent nootropics use to understanding the blueprints behind high-performance. [15:33]
- On using judo textbooks for transferring the principles of Japanese. [21:10]
- The missing piece: is the method efficient? [22:30]
- The catalyst for finding the method (which involved me dropping out of college in the middle of my senior year). [23:11]
- Using the DiSSS (deconstruction, selection, sequencing, and stakes) process to drastically shorten the time it took to learn languages. [25:04]
- Deconstruction: What are the minimal learnable units with which you should start? [27:50]
- Sequencing: In what order should you learn the blocks? [28:14]
- Stakes: How do you set up stakes to create real consequences and guarantee you follow the program? [28:19]
- The secondary principles of CaFE (compression, frequency, encoding). [28:32]
- Compression: Can you encapsulate the most important 20 percent into an easily graspable one-pager? [28:51]
- Frequency: How frequently should you practice? What is the minimum effective dose (MED) for volume? [29:00]
- Encoding: How do you anchor the new material to what you already know for rapid recall? [29:13]
- How I began interviewing people as a way to deconstruct and learn any skill. [29:36]
- My general interviewing process. [31:36]
- Learning from the process: applying the answers to your own experiences. [34:40]
- Dan Formosa
- Bill Gates
- Chris Rock
- Barry Ross
- Mark Bell
- Allyson Felix
- Warren Buffett
- Benjamin Graham
- David Dodd
- Michael Phelps
- Shinji Takeuchi
- Arthur Jones
- Erik Cosselmon
- Daniel Burka
- Martin Luther King, Jr.
- Bernie Feria
- Babak Nivi
- Kevin Rose
- Darya Rose
- Rick Torbett
- Scott Jurek
Posted on: October 6, 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.