Why Success Isn’t the Answer | Mike Posner on Impact Theory | Transcription

Transcription for the video titled "Why Success Isn’t the Answer | Mike Posner on Impact Theory".


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Intro (00:00)

How much of the stuff you do, how many of your so-called goals, you know, are just there because you're scared of being alone in a room. You're just making them up to feel productive. The only wrong way to do a day is to believe there's a right way to do a day. You know, it's to waste your time worrying about if you're doing it right. Everybody, welcome to Impact Theory. You're here, my friends, because you believe that human potential is nearly limitless, but you know that having potential is not the same as actually doing something with it. So our goal with this show and company is to introduce you to the people and ideas that will help you actually execute on your dreams. All right, today's guest is a Grammy-nominated singer-songwriter, poet, rapper, and music producer who has written hits for both himself and a star-studded cast of artists including Pharrell Williams, Big Sean, Two Chains, Wiz Khalifa, Avicii, Nick Jonas, and countless others. His smash hit, "I Took a Pill in a Biza," dominated the global charts. It was streamed roughly one billion times on Spotify and roughly the same number of video views on YouTube and reached the top 10 in 27 countries. His songs "Please Don't Go" and "Cooler Than Me" have been certified platinum and double platinum respectively, and the monster hit songs "Sugar," which he co-wrote from Maroon 5 and "Boyfriend," which he co-wrote for Justin Bieber. Together have been viewed over three billion times on YouTube alone. But what makes his story so interesting isn't just the insane level of success, it's that he gained it all, lost it, and then managed to gain it all back. After the explosive success of his freshman album, he struggled to make another hit, in fact he recorded two sophomore albums, both of which his label refused to release, and he was ultimately dropped from the record company and slid back into obscurity, totally disillusioned with fame in the trappings of success, but convinced he had more to give. He embarked on an incredible journey of self-discovery that led him to transcendental meditation, solitude, India, the landmark forum, and a whole lot of truth. He gave away most of his possessions, bought a van, lived in it, and traveled around the country playing music for free, and not unsurprisingly, this period of introspection found its way into his music, and from that, the mega hit "I Took a Pill in a Biza" was born.

Interview And Personal Insights

Mike Posner Influence (02:15)

Now with a bigger platform than ever, he's not only making amazing music, he's sharing what he's learned along the way, so please help me in welcoming the author of "Tear Drops and Balloons," and the host of the podcast "What Does This All Mean?" Multi-Platinum Artist, Mike Posner. Thank you so much for coming on the show, man. I'm playing the new show. Dude. I feel like I can just leave now. Just Mike Droughton, if I can. Yeah. Call it a day. Now, man, that was honestly-- Thank you. Great letter. The funny thing is, and I get that response frequently from people, and the truth is I'm literally just trying to find the honest through line of you. It's powerful because when someone sees you in a way that you don't necessarily see yourself, you can start to see yourself that way. So not to be in conception, like right then, like 30 seconds ago, you said a few things. One, you added up the number of the songs I've written for other people, and how many people have you ever heard of? Yeah. I had no idea. Yeah. I had no idea. And then secondly, you said with now with a larger platform than ever, which is true, but I never thought about that until right now. So you acknowledging me has changed my concept of myself. It's actually really interesting, and I know exactly what you mean. What I found so interesting diving into your story was how you've really ridden the journey of self-discovery. What I love is when everything seemed to be falling apart, you doubled down on you and figuring you out rather than doubling down on just music, which I thought was pretty interesting. Were you consciously aware of like, "I want to find myself," or was it just about peace? What was driving that? No, I feel like I don't deserve much credit in the matter. More felt like I had to. So here's what I mean. I put out my first record, and the first single I put out from that record was a song called "Cure the Me," and it exploded, and I'm like 22 or at the time-ish. And I thought, "Oh, great. This is what happens when I put out singles." It's just incredible, because it was my first one. My concept of myself, like who I actually was, for me was popular, young, successful, like, successful artist, young gun. And fast forward a year or two later, though I couldn't deny that those words didn't describe me anymore. Like, every day I was becoming less popular. I was becoming less successful. And I feel like I was forced to ask the question if that's not who I am, then who am I? And it's really a privilege to ask that question. I try to remind myself of that and talk about that on my podcast a lot, which typically we all know the cliches you raise to believe money or success or notoriety or attention from the opposite sex will fill you up and solve all your problems. And people always told me my whole life, that's not the case. I heard with my ears and my brain, but I didn't really believe with my heart and I didn't, like, really live a life that reflected me knowing those things. So I had to find out for myself, so what I do, like all the people that told me money can buy happiness in my head, I'd say, "You just haven't made enough money. I'm going to make more than you and then I'll be happier than you." And so I had to find out for myself and it's a privilege to, at 22, make money, achieve those, get attention from the opposite sex, achieve notoriety, and realize, "Hey, I actually feel exactly the same." I didn't really feel worse. I don't think it really made my experience of life worse, but it didn't make it better, which was scary because I really thought it was going to. And so now I have the privilege of asking, "If not that, then what?" And I don't know the answer yet. But how do you even embark on that? That is such a big question. That's, in some ways, that's more daunting to me than if somebody said I needed to break into the music industry. That at least seems more straightforward. Like, "Okay, I'd start a YouTube channel. I'd learn music, obviously. That'd be a good start for me." You play, you put it out there, you know what I mean? You hope you attract an audience. But answering the question of what does this all mean, where did you start? I was between, I was kind of during this period, and I went to the studio with my friend Big Sean. I don't want you to drop people's names on these shows. Look, I've read your thing. You're going to be dropping a lot of names today, so just get crazy. Yeah, but it's just like we live in LA, you meet people, but I want to distinguish Sean from an usual name drop because Big Sean and I were friends in Detroit.

Big Sean (07:59)

When we were both 18, the end of high school we met before either of us had any success. He used to come to my mom's house, we'd make music in my mom's bed. He caused my mom, you know, when he played his first homecoming show in Detroit, parents were in the front row. So it's kind of different. Anyways, as a long introduction to the actual story, which was, I'm in this sort of down period, and Sean invites me to the studio in LA. Now we both live in LA, so I go to the studio. And this guy's just like glowing, you know, in his career after like years of stagnation, his career is taking off. He's got his first hit. And he's one at this, like when I saw him in the studio, he was one of those guys where you just felt good being around him. So I just, like I went back to the studio the next day with, I go, what's going on with you? What's up with you? He's like, you got to read these two books. First one was The Alchemist, and the second one was Askin It Is Given by Esther and Jerry Hicks, which is like kind of out there, that book, but it's all about the law of attraction. And Sean, I don't know if he still does, but he used to carry it with him every day. And it's like, the cover was all like worn and like, it's a serious book and it's about basically you get what you think about. And that, like I think that really set me off. So I started, yeah, I started like exploring different belief systems and I still am. And did you find that that was alleviating some of the, because, so I went through similar ish things, not sort of the have and then lose, but I'm in film school, thought of myself as an artist very much, thought I was going to break into the industry. I had created, so you, there's basically three big movements in film school. And first of all, getting into film school statistically at USC, it's harder to get into USC film school than Harvard Law. So getting in, I was already like, I'm the man. And then I did very well in the first two movements. And then there's a fourth thing that you do where only four people in the entire class get to direct, which is called a 480. And so it's like really coveted everybody wants to do it. And I had done so well in the ones leading up, I got selected as one of the four. And so I just thought, this is it, man, I'm going to direct this film, I'm going to get the three picture deal when I graduate. It's all going to be set. Like everything I've ever dreamed about is about to come true. And then I completely fuck up the film. And it is just embarrassing. And so embarrassing, in fact, I steal the master so that it could never be seen again. And then I'm lost. I've graduated now and I have no idea where I'm going. And so beginning to pursue self development was really an active self-preservation. It was me, I felt so like claustrophobic in that sense of like, I failed, I am a fail you're, I'm not good enough, I'm not smart enough, and that this is forever. It's like a death sentence is exactly how it felt. And I remember at the time, at the period in my life, I would just lay on the carpet in my apartment. I was too poor to afford furniture. And so I would just lay on the carpet. And the thing that got me getting back up was finding things, anything, books, songs, everything, that had some sort of sense of you can do something with your life, like you can change your circumstances. So alleviated that sense of oppression that it got me going again.

What do you want from life (11:33)

Is that what was starting to happen for you in that period? Yeah, I think also thing is just like kind of exciting. To look at life the way that those two books like presented. And it's still like, it's another lens through which to look at like reality. It was more fun to think I'm the author of my life. And I have a say by what I think about and what I do by what happened. I control what my outcomes and what happens to me. It was like more, it was exciting to like try out. I found in my, and it's so far to really be true. And that you are the author of your own life? Yeah, and I think that I always believed I was going to have another like, I think I would have been a great way to work with the music industry during that time. I visualized like playing on Jimmy Fallon, you know. And then like a year or two later I was on Jimmy Fallon playing. So if you can author your life and make it whatever you want, like what's the plan? What do you hope that it adds up to? Mm, that's a great question. And it changes daily, you know. Definitely like a family. Children. That was something that I wanted for a long time, but I pretended like I didn't. Because I thought I couldn't do like, I couldn't do my career in at the same time. And then I realized I made that up that I can't do those at the same time. Somewhere along the line. And so I think that's like, that's one of the things. I have a more gargantuan goal I'm working on now.

International Peace Day (13:41)

It's sort of like so impossible, it might be possible, which is to have the entire world observe International Peace Day. I find it very interesting and very relevant to what you've gone on that your obsession is sort of thinking about how we change our perspective on ourselves and other people. One of the things in researching you that I found really interesting was your time at Landmark. Me too. And tell us about that.

Landmark (14:12)

And then specifically the part where you were saying that you'd created this story about yourself as a kid. Yeah. So, like we talked about, I've been doing a lot of like work on myself. I'm going to meditate and every day I'm reading like the bhagua gi task on India. I've done all these things. You know, meditation retreat. I met with Ram Dass. And I had a couple of friends that mentioned they'd done this thing called the Landmark Forum and it, and they got a lot of it. So like if I have three friends, tell me something's like good, I'll try it out. So I go to this like office building, this like white woman leading it with like kind of like an NSYNC microphone on her thing. And she's like, all right, now we're going to, this is going to change your life. I'm like, no, it's not. And we're going through this three days long and full days like nine in the 10 p.m. You breaks the eat, but like otherwise you're in there. And she's saying all this stuff. And I'm like, I know this. I know this. I know this. I know this already. And by the end of it, I realized like, I think this thing like really worked somehow. But the, your question like there's a, the first thing they would distinguish in theirs, there's a difference between what happened and your story about what happened. So in my case, like I was, I was on the basketball team in high school and I didn't play on the basketball team. I rode the bench and three quarters of the way through the season, I built up all this courage. I had a meeting with the coach in his office and I said, coach, why don't you ever play me? And you looked at me and he goes, don't play you because you're not good enough. And in that moment, I tried really hard not to, but I started to cry. And I was embarrassed I was crying. And in my head, I said, he doesn't know how special I am and I'll show him. And so what happened was he said I wasn't good enough, which was true. I wasn't good enough to play. That's why I didn't play, you know. He didn't like have some like personal thing against me. That's what happened. My story about what happened was he doesn't understand me. He doesn't see how good I am and I'll show him. And not only that, no one understands me. That's how I was living my life. And it took this lady in an office building like to for me to see that. So what are some of the bricks that have been transformational for you? So obviously going to the landmark, realizing the story that you tell yourself about yourself is important and that you really need to take ownership of that. The very fact that you are the author of your own life, that seems like it was another big one. I know that you did this seven day retreat of total isolation, which sounds so painful and then makes me think, God, do I have to do it because I'm so afraid of it? Maybe. But walk us through that. By the way, your podcast is phenomenal for anybody that really wants to get into like self transformation, exploring the self. It's really, really impressive. The episode around your time where you're reading your journals really unfiltered. I thought it was super interesting and you had a couple like what seemed like pretty big moments for you that I think you've carried with you moving forward. Walk us through like what the experience was like and what those moments were. You know, you might remember more than me if you listened to it more recently. And that's one of the scary things, you know. I think this stuff is a practice.

What happens when you are wholly alone (18:19)

As much as I'd like it to be boom, I got it and break through moment, I have it forever now. I'm not sure it is so much. A lot of this stuff, I guess I shouldn't, this was maybe another brick, I'm going to jump back. What was that in January this year? My dad died. I knew my dad was going to die, he was sick for a while. And one of the, one of the, why it's a brick, one of the gifts I got from him and dying was that it reminded me I'm going to die too. Which of course I knew in my head but like really reminded me. And it made me look at this list of stuff that I was putting off that I was going to do when I'm done being popular, I was going to do this stuff. I was like, no I should probably do that now. So like on that list was like Landmark. On that list is like starting a podcast. On that list was spending time in solitude. I'm just trying to like do that stuff because it's calling to me. So I Google like where I can go for a meditation retreat that's led and I think there's a lot of value to that. But I was just curious like what happens when I'm totally alone. So I found this place in Colorado. It's called the Tara Mandala Buddhist monastery. They have these like cabins that are, each one is set up for you to be like totally alone. So I get the monastery's guy, Pema, sweet dude. He's like, put your stuff in the back of the truck, drives me up. He's like, here's the wooden stove. Here's like the axe. There's a radio like if you're dying, call us but if not like do your thing. And you just left me. And there was no like guidance meant it was just like seeing a week. And there was a clock there but I thought, well since I'm here I'll see what it's like without clocks to I put that in the drawer. And I never took it out. And so there's like a meditation cushion there and I sit on it, close my eyes. And the first thing my mind does is starts to make up tasks for me to accomplish. So I'm sitting there, it's like you know, there's some spices that whoever was here before you left. You should really like organize those and put them in like the right order. Maybe alphabetical. And it's like, you know, you have an exercise that you should probably like run up that hill three times. How many of your so-called goals, you know, are just there because you're scared of being alone in a room. You're just making them up to feel productive. There's a quote I think is a blaze poskaw he says, I might have ordered two off. He says, "All of men's problems stem from the fact that he cannot sit quietly alone in a room." It turns out it's like really hard to do that, you know. So that was one lesson, you know. And there were periods, I don't want to glorify them, there were periods of like real boredom is not strong enough, like despair when I was there. I remember you said at one point you actually for a few minutes considered suicide is a reasonable option.

Suicide as a reasonable option (21:49)

Oh, and that isn't a lesson. So like, it's one day I'm going to get to it. And I wake up one day, this may be the day two, and like I have my options. I wake up, I'm going to go to the bathroom in the outhouse, I'm going to meditate, I'm going to drink water, I'm going to go for a walk. And I can't decide what order to do those. Like literally that, because no one else is there to talk to and no one. So I'm watching my mind, like that's the show. And this is what my mind does all the time, but I'm really noticing like, that's how I live my life normally. I can't decide what to do. And my doing it right is the real underlying question. And that implies that there's a right way to do life. And so that was like lesson two is the only wrong way to do a day is to believe there's a right way to do a day. You know, it's to waste your time worrying about if you're doing it right. That's the only wrong way. So then I decide tomorrow, I'm going to just do what I want the whole time. So I wake up, crack a dawn, sun's not up yet. And I look at everything around me, it's changing. Even the body, this body's different than it was a year ago, like these fingernails are longer than they were when I got here. I'm noticing everything's changing except for like the eye and me. And I've tried to change that. And so, you know, people throw around that weren't like present, like I felt like present. But then I realized I always will be present. So the rest of my life will just be exactly like this. So then the next thought was like, well, why do you have to live the rest of the life? And you know what it's going to be like? And how do you get out of the present? I don't know if you can't. So that's when I thought about, well, there's a knife in the kitchen area. And I was like, no, you should probably just like sleep this one off, dude. So I wasn't like really, I want to be clear, I wasn't like really close to killing myself. But I thought about, I'm thinking about these things, like the real heart of like existence, like what it means to be alive and presence and what it means to actually be present, like not in the future, not in the past. Have you read Nelson Mandela's long walk to freedom?

Nelson Mandelas Long Walk to Freedom (24:48)

Dude, read it. You will love the book of this, I assure you. And he talks about solitary confinement and what it does. And he goes into this whole diatribe, which as I was listening to your podcast, I was just like, oh my God, the human mind cannot deal with boredom. Like it is just wired to never allow itself to be bored. And that's why the ultimate punishment is to put somebody into solitary. A, oftentimes they start hallucinating. I was actually waiting for a story about you having some hallucinations and maybe because you had nature and all that. And you were journaling that probably helped. But when people are really, really like locked down isolated, yeah, that literally when there's no transition from night to day, like the human mind just is not wired for that. So it's really interesting that that level of isolation had the, which by the way, those were the, I'll say the two sort of key breakthroughs that you talked about in the podcast. It's very, very interesting to see that forcing yourself through that really crystallizes the sense of the eye, the version of me that sort of reading the world and interpreting everything that's ever present, it's everywhere that I go. And so ultimately becomes the only thing that matters because it's the filter through which I'm going to experience everything in my life. And then you also said that, you know, walking away from that, I felt like, okay, it's easy to find peace in the mountains, but now that my career is taking off again, can I come back off the mountain, back down into Venice, and can I still have that kind of peace? I'm super curious. Like what's that experience like? Are you still striving as hard as ever to make great music? Because at one point you were saying that you wanted to win Song of the Year and Album of the Year at the Grammys, like are these still things that you're striving towards? And if so, how do you balance the two of really finding that deep peace that I can totally feel you going for and have ambition? That's a great question. I'm starting to kind of just make peace with my ambition. Meaning not trying to get rid of it. In fact, I think that would probably make it worse. You know? It's just part of me. It's like embarrassed that I would care about like winning a Grammy. And part of me really doesn't care, you know? But part of me really does. So what do you do with that? And so I think there's like kind of two schools of thought that one, it's possible to like work on yourself to extricate yourself from desire. And I don't know how realistic that really is, you know, to not have desire. If I got rid of that desire, it'd be something else, you know? Maybe it's not necessary to get rid of my ego, my desires, my selfishness, which all exist. We'll make peace with them. I think it's kind of going to go back to a lot of attraction things. The more you focus on like, I have this desire that I don't like, the more you're going to get that. So I still make music. I really like to make music. It's really fun. I'm not sure I could stop.

Doing what you love for a living (28:12)

My instric you when you do something you love for a living and you're successful at it, you know, which I'm blessed to be. You are too. Are you after you get the success? Are you doing this because you want more success or you still love it? Well, the answer is probably both. People myself included is nice to be liked, you know? Do I think like if everyone hated me, I could figure out how to be happy.

Learning the guitar (28:42)

Yeah, I'd like to think so. All right. So what I really want to know is how you express your drive. So you learn to play guitar quite late in life if I'm not mistaken. So how did you go about that? Like as somebody who's taking guitar lessons, that's a big task. Especially if you can already create music other ways. After the wait, my first sort of like wave of popularity had crashed. You know, I went from like doing concerts all over the world, like taking my shirt off at shows, making more money than I deserved to like overnight kind of having like a completely open schedule. And I was just like alone in my house. And so I was kind of similar to the, I guess solitude moment in a different way years before, which was like, what do I want to do? You know, do I even still want to do music? Because I don't have to. There's just like nothing to do right now. It reminded me, I don't know if I had heard it at the time, but it reminds me of like the Steve Jobs moment where he gets fired from Apple and he has this moment that, hey, I actually really, even though I've been fired, I still really love what I do. And so he starts another tech company next. I felt like that. I know like I'm not as popular as I was. I still really love music. And so I thought, maybe I'll take this time to get better at music. I didn't know, I didn't know how to play guitar at all. I didn't know how to play piano at all. So I just thought like, man, it all takes like some piano lessons. And I found this like, who became my mentor? His name was Norman Henry Mamie. And he became sort of like a father figure to me. I just did exactly what he said. I just got really into it. And I went like that. And I just say, I'm a big believer in teachers. Big believer in teachers. I couldn't get that good, just like YouTube playing on my own. I had that guy, that relationship that I'm accountable to. It makes a big difference. How do you find a great teacher? The best way is if you have someone else you trust who's good, that recommends them. So my guitar teacher I found through James Valentine, who plays in room five. He's like, this is my teacher. And he's awesome. That's how I learn, just practicing. He's just going to suck for a while, but you get good. It's easy to get frustrated after a day's work. I really worked hard on that. But if you do that for a month, it's crazy what you can accomplish. Speaking of hard work, there's a great quote by Jay Z.

How do you know that you're changing from a place of truth? (32:04)

You think I worked this hard to stay the same. You've talked a lot about in your change. When I think about even just the persona of you and the boom chicka-wow-wow song, to now, the change is incredible. You quoted Gandhi as saying, I have no allegiance to consistency only to truth. It's true. Yeah. There's a story, Ramdas, he said, I don't know how true it is. But Ramdas told a story about Gandhi, that this is where the quote comes from. He was leading a march. And there's thousands of people following him. And there were some particular details, like it was a holiday or something, maybe something with the police or something. And he decided this march is actually going to do more harm than good. And everyone's gone to him. You can't cancel the march now. Like, look. And he said, my allegiance is not to consistency, it's the truth. And so he called off the march. And I think that's important. And it's tough. So you've got to reassess. So now you have this additional layer, which is success. So for you to change could actually be really expensive in a really real way. How do you not get trapped by that? For instance, obviously, to write another song that's in the same vein as I took a pill in Ibiza, it's like, I'm sure everybody wants you to do that. But then how do you stay true to where you are creatively? Like, even mansions, right? Like, the way that you can line up your interviews. And even if you block the hair, and I couldn't see that you had green hair, which you did for pretty much every interview you give on mansions. But even if I couldn't see that, I could tell literally from the first sentence, this is a mansions interview. Like, the way you talk, the presence that you had, everything was just different. And so you clearly have not been afraid to make pretty radical changes in the way that you present yourself. Like, honestly, today, when I was doing the research, I'm like, I actually don't know who I'm going to get.

How Mike stays true to himself, despite others not liking change (34:19)

I don't know if I'm going to get podcast mic. If I'm going to get mansions mic. You know, if I'm going to get sort of mainstream pop mic, like, you're very capable of going. And like, these really-- and when you're in that lane, you're crazy consistent. But then you'll be in the next interview. And you'll be radically different. And I'm like, what the fuck? It's so fascinating. Because as an artist, what I've read about musicians, especially, is their big torment is my fans, my managers, everybody, they want me to-- the hit was here. And just keep being that. And the irony is so-- this is full confession. So Spotify just recommends music to me all the time, right? So as I began the research, there were like three songs that I have of you in my playlist. I didn't know where you. I didn't know the mansions stuff was you. I should have, because your voice is so fucking unique. But it was so different than the other stuff that it didn't click. And so when I started looking, I was like, Jesus, even musically, you're capable of not only writing for people all across the map. But even when you do it yourself, it's wildly different. And so while I'm a huge believer in change, I love change. But as an artist, man, fuck. Like, if I rolled up one day and just did the interview style totally different, people would be like, the fuck? And I would be tense to do it, because it's like, I want to guess to know, there's consistency, and you don't have to worry, and you know what you're going to get. So it's amazing. I'm super inspired by it. And I'm just wondered, like, how much of that is conscious. Like, I'm feeling this and want to express it. And how much is like, just, you don't even think about it. When I feel green, I die my hair green. I think in the past, I felt that everyone wants me to stay the same. So I would overcompensate. You see what I'm saying? Instead of, like, just doing what I want to do, I might do the opposite of what everyone wants me to do, just to prove I am still autonomous. Technically, how have you dealt with people that, like, so you've even said, like, my parents, for instance, at times, didn't like when I was changing. So what do you do when it's somebody like that, especially, that you're so close to? I got to do what I think is true to myself. And the reality is, if you don't do what you want to do because of what someone else says or what you think someone else is going to say-- a lot of times isn't what they're going to say-- you're going to resent that person. So it's going to mess the relationship up anyways. You might as well do what you think is true to yourself and real. And what I found is by doing that, by expressing myself, what I've gotten over the years of these amazing relationships where people accept that I do that. And now I have a space to do that. And my fans now, do I lose them along the way? Oh, yeah, I'm sure. But a lot of the ones that I have now? No. They know for sure. My next album is going to be different than my last one.

Mike'S Projects And Emotional Journey

I'm the brand (37:57)

That's what they're a fan of now. I had this moment this summer. I was in a kayaking trip with my friends. I had this huge beard. And one of my friends was like, you got the beard, man. He was like, is that on brand? And I was like, dude, I'm the brand. Whatever I do, that's the brand. So I think that's how I deal with this, do what I feel is true to me. And in time, the people who really care to love me and love is just accepting how they are right now and how they aren't right now. That's what love is. So the people that accept me, how I am, that love me, they accept that I change. I get that for sure. All right, I'd be very remiss not to ask about your dad and what you went through. What were-- what did you learn? What did you take away? How did that shift your perspective? Yeah, thanks for asking. It's one thing I'm learning. My dad died about 11 months ago. So coming up on a year, one thing I'm learning is this thing changes over time. My dad had brain cancer, so he was sick about 10 months where we knew he was going to die, till when he did die. And in that time period, I got to say goodbye. I got to tell him why his life was meaningful in my eyes, like what he did for me, the impact he had on me. And I got to tell him it was OK to go. And I got to tell him I'll be OK when you go. I'll miss you, but I'll be OK. So wherever you have to go, wherever you have to do right now, you have my blessing. When my father passed away, I didn't really feel sad.

Mike on Grieving (40:08)

I felt like I had a father. A lot of my friends don't have fathers. I had a father 29 years. I'm not going to complain because I didn't have them 30 to 31 and I had an amazing father. And so I remember his funeral and we had all the family or to celebrate. And I just thought it was the most beautiful day that everyone we love was here honoring dad. And everyone I love is around me. And I had a dad. It was a celebration. And the relationship I have with my mother now, I wouldn't have-- if it wasn't for a landmark and my dad down wouldn't have this relationship with my mom. All right, before I ask my last question, where can these guys find you? Oh, man, it's all under my name, Mike Posner. I think I have-- yeah, it's like all the social media ones. It's just my name. Nice and simple. All right, what's the impact that you want to have on the world? I would like to start with that International Peace Day. I think that if we could achieve that as humans-- and I don't want it to be my-- if that ever were to happen, which I think it can, it wouldn't be like Mike did that. It would have to be a lot of people working on it. And hopefully, I would-- yeah, I'd just be a part of it. But yeah, I think if that happened, I would feel fulfilled like I made a difference. I don't want to die feeling like I didn't give everything I had. I got scared somewhere and I didn't try that idea. So I want to start there. And then if that happens, I think it's something else. Sounds good. Yeah. Awesome, man. Thank you so much for coming on the show. It was incredible. That's cool. All right, guys, here is the astonishing thing about his story. I love that the unimaginable heights of success that he has experienced have been born out of just an immeasurably deep self-experimentation process that is out there for everybody to watch. And the thing that I find so interesting about him, it's literally like he's experimenting with all of this stuff from doing the isolation to going to India, to meeting with Guru's, interviewing Deepak Chopra, I mean, like on and on and on. The number of things that he's done to self-experiment on himself, and he's making it all available, both in the songs.

Tear Drops and Balloons (43:10)

When you start listening to the lyrics, you realize what he's up to. The poetry is unbelievable, by the way. And I am normally super skeptical about people saying that they do poetry. Check out his book, "Tear Drops and Balloons." It is incredible.

Podcast (43:30)

And he's about to launch an album where he's actually performing the poems in live concerts, which, having heard him perform one of the poems, it's unbelievable. His performances are as amazing as the poetry is in and of itself. So check it out. Go on this journey with him. Follow his podcast.

Journal (43:47)

It is incredible the way that he's inviting people into his world as he really does experience his self-transformation to reflect back on it, to share his journal entries. All of it is so raw.


Conclusion (43:56)

It's insane. So if you've ever wondered about this stuff for yourself, there is somebody right now going through all of it for you, sharing it, and sharing what's working, what's not working. It's absolutely incredible. All right, guys. If you haven't already, be sure to subscribe. And until next time, my friends, be legendary. Take care. Thank you. What's up, impacivists? If you've ever failed your New Year's resolutions, we've created a free guide just for you, the Resolution Reality Checklist. It teaches you how to write smarter resolutions that you will actually crush this year. You can download it today at info.impacttheory.com/resolutions. resolutions.

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