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28 minutes | Sep 17, 2021
#35 – Food
I love food. Diets don't work. Society has trained you to hate yourself.
52 minutes | Sep 15, 2021
#34 – Nonviolent Communication
Nonviolent Communication is an awesome approach to learning how to say what you mean and mean what you say. NVC teaches you to think and talk in a way that tries to serve life, rather than disconnect us from our feelings and needs (the way we’re normally taught to communicate). Here’s how you can learn NVC: 1. Search “nvc marshall rosenberg” on YouTube and watch the 3-hour video with him in the red shirt. 2. Read his book “Nonviolent Communication: A Language of Life” 3. Practice a lot. 4. Be prepared for all your friends to get angry. 5. Keep practicing. Good luck! More about Nonviolent Communication.
31 minutes | Jul 26, 2021
#33 – Loneliness and Social Anxiety
Is loneliness good or bad? Social anxiety. Could you survive on a desert island? Should white people be singing spirituals? Finding flow in your speaking (like Rush Limbaugh). Amplifying your singing and speaking voices.
52 minutes | Jun 21, 2021
#32 – Blame isn’t the Problem
When you get sufficiently advanced, spiritually speaking, you're likely to view blame as a problem. As in, you shouldn't do it. But, this is a misunderstanding. In this episode, I revisit the Drama Triangle and the Empowerment Dynamic, as well as Nonviolent Communication. The key phrase here is "it's about function, not form."
63 minutes | Jun 20, 2021
#31 – What’s the Deal with Michael Korman?, with David Servias
Cancel culture in the world of collaborative piano! David Servias sat down to interview me about trouble brewing in some of the Facebook piano groups. Read the full story. 0:02:16 - What's the deal with Michael Korman? He seems to have a gift for offending people. 0:04:26 - Michael's post in the Collaborative Piano group. 0:07:29 - Did Michael know it would piss people off? Does he think it stops them from hearing? 0:10:47 - Getting kicked out of other groups. 0:14:55 - Is it bad to get kicked out? 0:18:00 - When is it weird to kick people out of groups? 0:20:13 - Are you intentionally pissing people off for fun? 0:22:25 - What separates Michael from other piano teachers? 0:30:43 - When people misunderstand and change the subject. 0:36:52 - Having disagreements in good faith. 0:46:19 - Should people be getting along? Is conflict good or bad? 0:55:41 - When the mob constructs its own narrative. How and when to defend yourself.
31 minutes | Jun 14, 2021
#30 – 3 Stages to Learning Any Skill
Why I deleted all my Instagram followers. Why responsibility is a good thing. The 3 stages in learning any kind of skill.
125 minutes | May 30, 2021
#29 – When Insight Strikes, with Blake Shields Abramovitz
Blake Shields Abramovitz is a meditation teacher and an actor, and this is a followup to our conversation from October of 2020, which you can hear in Episode 7: When Meditators Get Cancelled. In this episode, we talk about piano playing, awakening, multiple selves, what happens as you go down the path of insight, psychedelics, and acting. I hope you enjoy it. 0:01:50 - Cancel culture at meditation centers, freedom of speech 0:11:50 - Piano teachers giving Michael a hard time (again), mob mentality 0:16:25 - Michael's piano playing ability, what role piano plays in Blake's life 0:19:51 - Breaking the rules in piano playing, how Michael developed his way of playing 0:23:36 - Why singing is hard to learn 0:29:10 - How singing leads to awakening 0:35:07 - How to talk about awakening with people who haven't had experiences like that 0:38:16 - The wisdom function 0:41:54 - Michael's nostalgia for a creative period of time 0:47:08 - What intentions do piano teachers have? 0:54:04 - What if you just mess around on the piano? Multiple selves 0:56:47 - The Karate Kid 0:58:58 - Technical meditation vs. intellectual meditation 1:07:11 - Going down the road of insight, getting less attached 1:10:10 - Moments when things shifted for Blake 1:13:38 - What's the deal with psychedelics? 1:45:48 - Acting 1:54:47 - Meditation for actors
17 minutes | May 24, 2021
#28 – Anti-Perfectionism and Real Life
Why it's easier to perform well in real life than when you're practicing. Anti-perfectionism. Different types of personalities. Sometimes adrenaline is what makes you do a good job. It's just conservation of energy.
20 minutes | May 16, 2021
#27 – What is Perfectionism?
What's the deal with perfectionism? In this episode, I'll talk about where it comes from, why it's a problem, and what to do about it.
23 minutes | May 1, 2021
#26 – Michael is Just a Character
Is "Michael Korman" a character, or a "real" person? Are you? What's the difference? All your questions answered in this episode.
19 minutes | Apr 29, 2021
#25 – Something About Habits
Let's talk about habits. And why science is not always such a great thing. (You might be interested in my blog post How to Build Habits)
60 minutes | Apr 24, 2021
#24 – Random Talking About Meditation and Piano, with Ruth Djatmiko
This is a conversation I had with Ruth Djatmiko. Ruth is a piano teacher in Amsterdam. She also recently started meditating with my No Problem course. I asked her to have this conversation because I wanted to hear about her difficulties with meditation and how she relates it piano playing. 01:45 - Definition of "meditation" 04:49 - Michael's meditation routines 06:02 - Does meditation require sitting? Can walking be meditation? 08:09 - Is playing music a meditation posture? 11:29 - Is sitting important even if it's uncomfortable? 12:21 - Is sitting REALLY useful? 13:17 - Is 2 hours of meditation too much? 14:58 - How to build up longer periods of time 19:09 - Does meditation change how you look at the world? 21:00 - The No Problem meditation course 23:44 - Why is Michael angry at piano teachers? 27:39 - Piano practice 29:05 - Sight-reading vs. studying 35:11 - What's the point of classical music? 38:53 - Appreciating music after studying it. 40:32 - Fugues 43:21 - Should Michael appreciate piano teachers' opinions? 44:20 - Doing what works, how Michael came up with ignoring musicality 47:42 - Meditation, music, spreading ideas 49:46 - Free improvisation 52:16 - Michael's path to a music degree 55:56 - Difference between amateur and professional musicians 57:05 - Feeling the stress of classical musicians
20 minutes | Apr 9, 2021
#23 – Why Generosity Is Impossible, But Necessary
Let's talk about human nature. Should we be generous? Are we inherently selfish?
23 minutes | Apr 6, 2021
#22 – Stories Are Just Tools
The stories you tell yourself aren't "true" or "false". They're tools, like a hammer or a screwdriver. In this episode, I talk about why that's important, and give an exercise for helping you destroy your own personality in a blaze of contradictions.
19 minutes | Apr 4, 2021
#21 – Oppression Is All In Your Head
Did Jordan Peterson invent "cultural Marxism"? Is oppression real? Do we have to take down Bill Gates in order to become rich? In this special episode of the Self-Defined Human Podcast, we take a break from meditation and offend some people who never gave a damn about meditation in the first place.
20 minutes | Mar 28, 2021
#20 – How to Fix Boredom
I hope this episode isn't too boring. If it is...well...you should be meditating. It might do you some good.
40 minutes | Mar 15, 2021
#19 – If You Have Anxiety, You MUST Meditate
It's non-negotiable. I'll tell you why all the other options for dealing with anxiety are insufficient. Also, we'll slow WAY down and cruise down the highway.
16 minutes | Mar 1, 2021
#18 – Why You Can’t Satisfy Everybody
In this episode, I'll talk about the big problem the INTP faces: the obsession with pleasing other people. Also, life sucks and meditation will help you with that. Workability is the key. Religion. Truth. And finally, how you MUST deal with those idiots.
31 minutes | Feb 25, 2021
#17 – How to Get Your Money
This is about how I can get YOUR money. We'll talk about meditation, marketing, spiral dynamics, and the problems INTPs and ENTPs face on a daily basis.
23 minutes | Feb 23, 2021
#16 – The 5 Biggest Meditation Mistakes
I'm going to try being helpful in this episode. You'll learn about the 5 biggest mistakes meditators are making these days. I hope I can stay on track the entire time. Recorded in the car, while driving. Don't worry, there's no road rage.
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