• Podcast

Episode 128 — Robert Greene — The Laws of Power and Human Nature

Human beings are more powerful than we could ever imagine. What might be a simple word or sentence coming from you could be a life-altering realization for someone else. If we don’t understand how to effectively wield that power, we could cause some serious damage. But if we learn to harness it for good, we can change lives for the better.

These are the kind of things that best-selling author Robert Greene is set on bringing to light. In this episode of The Game Changing Attorney Podcast, get a firsthand look at just how unbelievable humans really are — and what we’re truly capable of when we put our minds to accomplishing our goals.

Robert and Michael sit down to discuss:

  • Why his books are beloved by everyone from war historians to pop culture icons
  • How working with 50 Cent was a game changing experience
  • Why we actually have no grip on who we really are

Listen and subscribe on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Amazon Music, and Spotify.

Show Notes:

You’ve got to play the game. “You think that your talent, your goodness, your kindness, your hard work is enough in this world — but it isn’t. Naive people don’t understand the power they have, how they might inadvertently make people feel insecure, and so on. If you’re not adept at the social aspect of the work world, it’s like you’re putting yourself behind the eight-ball. You’re giving yourself a continual handicap.”

Why The 48 Laws of Power took off. “This book kind of feeds into the dark side of human nature, which is quite repressed in our culture. When it comes to a subject like power or work world or offices, we don’t like to talk about the truth. When you see self help books, they usually emphasize the goodness of human nature and how people should be cooperative, not manipulative, etc. That wasn’t my experience in the work world. Though I had many great bosses, probably five to 10 percent of them were grand manipulators who made me and others suffer greatly. The lack of honesty in our culture that can be found in this book is like a splash of cold water on your face. This is reality and what people are really like. It’s a dirty little secret.”

The value of 50 Cent. “I’m not into celebrity culture. I’m into realness. People who have had really horrible experiences and have surmounted them is something that I have tremendous respect for. I like the energy that I can pick up from them because I think they’ve overcome obstacles that I’ve never had to deal with. 50 Cent embodies that. He has this incredibly calm energy: never yelling, never violent, only calm and soft spoken. That comes from all of the tough, horrible things he’s been through. It also comes from the fact that someone shot him in the head and he almost died. When you come that close to death, nothing else really matters to you. His calmness and fearlessness is amazing.”

Social butterflies. “Humans are social animals. If you understand anything about evolution and about where we came from, we are the premier social animals on the planet. Everything we do is social. You are not really an individual. You are not really Michael Mogill. You are a conglomerate of your parents — of their ideas and beliefs. All of your thoughts come from your language, which is English, which comes from Old English, which comes from Latin, which comes from way back. You are a mix of history. Nobody can gain power in this world without understanding the social game.”

Who am I? “In order to know who you are, you have to begin with the idea that came from Socrates: You don’t know who you are. You are ignorant. Ignorance is the source of knowledge. By admitting to yourself that you know nothing, you can then begin to learn. If you think you know who you are, that’s a sure sign that you’re fooling yourself. You’re believing the script that you want to believe, and you haven’t spent the time or the true introspection it takes to discover who you really are.”

Death comes for all of us. “I don’t believe living longer or even forever is a good thing. As the great Jim Morrison once said, ‘No one here gets out alive.’ You have to face your mortality. I want to be healthy and live to be 100 years old. My mother is still alive, and she’s 95 and doing very well. For me to deny that we don’t want to live long, healthy lives is ridiculous. But the planet could not sustain people living forever. We’re having a hard enough time with the amount of people we have now. Imagine if people don’t die — then how will young people ever get jobs? Old people will have all the power. Death is a good part of life. If you’re denying death, you’re denying life itself.”

Listen to your passions. “If you realize your life’s task, what energizes you, and what you were meant to accomplish, then the money doesn’t matter — because that’s true success. What seems to happen is people do find their way into the path and really do quite well for themselves and they’re happy in their careers. I hate to say this because this is a law/attorney podcast, but when I was growing up, many people were pressured into going into law because it’s lucrative — but it didn’t connect to a lot of people. You could end up being a high-power attorney, but when you reach your 40s and 50s and decide you aren’t connecting with it, you’re going to pay a price. Should I not have said that about attorneys?”

What does being a game changer mean to you? “There are so many people out there doing the same thing. If you had a job at 26 or 27 years old and you’re in a comfortable position, don’t be so comfortable. What will happen in the next two or three years is that the older you get, the more expensive you get. You’ll be fired and lose your job, and a younger version of you will take your place. You are replaceable. Game changers are not replaceable. There is only one Michael Mogill, and no one could take over The Game Changing Attorney Podcast because you’re the only person to ever do it. It’s so easy to get rid of people — but if you have a skill or an ability that no one else can do, you can rule the world.”

RESOURCES & REFERENCES

The Obstacle is the Way by Ryan Holiday
The Laws of Human Nature by Robert Greene
50 Cent
The 50th Law by Robert Greene
Mike Tyson
Columbia Records
Eminem
Interscope Records
Mahatma Gandhi
National Basketball Association (NBA)
The Oracle of Delphi
Socrates
Louis the XIV
Jim Morrison
Boomers
Jonathan Swift
Elon Musk
Steve Jobs
The Game Changing Attorney Podcast

CONNECT WITH MICHAEL
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