A Conversation with Steven Kotler on the Frontiers of Human Performance.

Steven Kotler is one of the world’s foremost experts on high performance. He is a New York Times bestselling author, a multi award-winning journalist and Executive Director of the Flow Research Collective. He is also at the bleeding-edge of research around how technology and innovation will be impacting the future of human performance, a topic he covers in his forthcoming book The Future is Faster Than you Think (Peter H. Diamandis, Steven Kotler, 2020).
In this exclusive interview, I spoke to Steven to learn more about elite performance, his learnings from working with the world’s most elite performers, and how we can apply those learnings to our own lives.

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Mindfulness

The Most Important Tool We Have. In these exclusive interviews we speak to Professor Jon Kabat-Zinn (scientist, writer and meditation teacher), Matthieu Ricard (Buddhist monk, photographer and author), Andy Puddicombe (Founder of Headspace), Dr. Danny Penman (award winning writer, journalist and meditation teacher) and Mallika Chopra (media entrepreneur, public speaker and published author). We explore the concepts of mindfulness and meditation, learning about how they impact every aspect of our lives, and discuss how mindful approaches can help us reach our full potential as human beings.

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Diseases of the Heart

I want you to make a fist and hold it just to the left of the centre of your chest.  Just under your ribs, is an organ, around that size, which will beat around 3 billion times in your lifetime pumping blood around the 100,000 miles of vessels that supply every part of your body. The heart is a miraculous product of evolution, and one which plays a role more critical in the fact that we are alive, and the fact that we could die – than any other organ in our body.   Perhaps unsurprising therefore that even with our advances in medical science, cardiovascular disease remains the largest single health burden to humanity, contributing to over 30% of all deaths worldwide and costing the global economy over $1 trillion each year. To understand more about the reality of cardiovascular disease, I spoke to two of the world’s most preeminent cardiovascular physicians, Dr. Haider Warraich (Author of: State of the Heart, Exploring the History, Science and Future of Cardiac Disease) and Dr. Sandeep Jauhar (Author of: Heart: A History)

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A Conversation with Melinda Gates, co-chair of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation

By deploying capital and talent, guided by the vision that every life has equal value, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation has achieved some incredible successes.  Over 500 million children have been vaccinated, with over 7 million lives saved… 3 million households have received access to drought-tolerant crops…. 99% fewer Polio cases are now reported worldwide… 8 million people have received access to anti-retroviral drugs, guinea worm disease is close to being eradicated, and almost 500 million mosquito nets have been distributed.   Melinda French Gates is a philanthropist, businesswoman, and global advocate for women and girls. As the co-chair of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Melinda sets the direction and priorities of the world’s largest philanthropy. She is also the founder of Pivotal Ventures, an investment and incubation company working to drive social progress for women and families in the United States. I had the pleasure of catching-up with Melinda Gates to speak to her about her learnings in philanthropy, and creating lasting global change.

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Equality

In this exclusive series of interviews from 2015-today, I spoke with the world’s foremost experts on inequality: Kate Gilmore (United Nations Deputy High Commissioner for Human Rights), The Rt. Hon. The Lord Bird MBE (Founder & Editor in Chief, The Big Issue), Harry Leslie Smith (1923-2018 Activist, Survivor of the Great Depression and WWII RAF Veteran), Professor Sir Anthony Atkinson (1944-2017, Centennial Professor at the London School of Economics and Fellow of Nuffield College, Oxford), Professor David Hulme (Executive Director of the University of Manchester Global Development Institute) , Professor Sir Michael Marmot  (Director of the Institute of Health Equity, University College London),  Baroness Onora O’Neill (Former Chair of the Equality and Human rights Commission) and Prof. Richard Wilkinson (Co-Founder of the Equality Trust).  We discuss the fundamental question of why inequality exists in our society, the impact it has on our world, and what we can do to fight it

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A Conversation with David Goggins, Ultra-Athlete & Former Navy SEAL

David Goggins is a retired Navy SEAL and the only member of the U.S. Armed Forces ever to complete SEAL training, U.S. Army Ranger School, and Air Force Tactical Air Controller training. Goggins has competed in more than sixty ultra-marathons, triathlons, and ultra-triathlons, setting new course records and regularly placing in the top five. He is a former Guinness World Record holder for completing 4,030 pull-ups in seventeen hours, and inspires tens of thousands each year through his speaking engagements and training. I caught up with David to learn more about his journey, and howe we can build the resilience and endurance he has.

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Why We Sleep

If you are lucky enough to live to 79 (the global average lifespan) you will have spent around 25 of those years (roughly one third of your entire life) asleep. Scientific advances over the past quarter of a century have created a renaissance in sleep research, giving us greater insights into the role and importance of sleep in our lives. To learn more, I spoke to Dr. Matthew Walker, Professor of Neuroscience and Founder & Director of The Center for Human Sleep Science at the University of California, Berkeley.

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Learning from the Superhumans among us.

Dr. Rowan Hooper is Managing Editor of New Scientist, and in his recent book Superhuman, he scoured the world, aiming to answer a few key questions: Why can some people achieve greatness when others can’t, no matter how hard they try? What are the secrets of long life and happiness? Just how much potential does our species have? Rowan met ultrarunners, those who have rebounded from near-death, those who have exhibited exceptional bravery, found incredible happiness, and who have minds, voices and abilities that seemingly the rest of us could never match.  I caught up with Rowan to understand what he learned from meeting our world’s superhumans.

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On Mental Health & Cities – A Conversation with The First Lady of NYC, Chirlane McCray

In 2015, New York City announced an unprecedented commitment to create a mental health system that works for all the city’s residents, and a commitment to empower citizens’ mental health and well-being.  This initiative was titled to match its desired outcome: ThriveNYC. To learn more about how New York City is empowering the mental health of its citizens, and becoming an international leader in creating a mental health friendly city, I spoke with theFirst Lady of New York City, Chirlane McCray.

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Mental Health

The World’s Most Profound Health Challenge. In these exclusive interviews we speak to: Dr. Thomas Insel (Former Director of the National Institutes of Mental Health, NIMH – Co-Founder, Mindstrong Health), Dr. Shekhar Saxena (Director: Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse at the World Health Organisation, WHO), Paul Farmer CBE (Chief Executive of Mind, the world’s largest Mental Health NGO), Sergeant Kevin Briggs (Guardian of the Golden Gate Bridge), Marcus Trescothick (International Cricketer and Mental Health Campaigner) Professor Vikram Patel (Professor at the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine and the Public Health Foundation of India), Professor Andrew Solomon (Writer and lecturer on politics, culture and psychology, a Professor of Clinical Psychology at Columbia University Medical Center, and President of PEN American Center),Professor Green (Rapper, Singer, Songwriter, Actor and Television Personality) and Matt Haig (Author, Journalist & Activist). We look at the realities of mental health worldwide, understand the true burden on individuals, communities and countries and look at the opportunities to deal with our global mental health crisis.

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