MetaLearn provides you with the knowledge and skills needed to future proof yourself and thrive in the 21st century. Host Nasos Papadopoulos will guide you through the principles needed learn faster, think smarter and succeed in your career through conversations with the thought leaders driving the global learning revolution.
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Apr 7, 2021

Neer Sharma is the founder of Patent Drop, a newsletter that gives you a peek into the future by summarising new patents from big tech companies.

He previously co-founded HaikuJAM - a mobile game that helps people feel better through collaborative writing, helping grow the community to over 1 million users.

In this episode we discuss:
- How to navigate a career change without having the next thing lined up
- What the latest patents coming out of big tech tell us about the future of online interaction
- Neer’s experiments with NFTs (non fungible tokens) and what the technology means for creators

This conversation will give you access to the mindset and strategies of someone who’s created a completely new career for himself by running experiments online as well as some great insights into the weird and wonderful virtual world that’s being built online.

Mar 31, 2021

Armand D’Angour is a Professor of Classics at Oxford University, a musician and the author of several books, including his latest Socrates in Love.

In this episode we discuss:

- Armand's revisionist biography of Socrates including an account of the woman who helped him shape his ideas on love
- The value of reviving ancient music and the methods for doing so

- What the Greeks’ attitude to the new can teach us about technology in the modern world

This was a wonderful conversation that will give you fresh insight into the foundations of Western philosophy and the connections between music and the classics.

Mar 24, 2021

Annie Duke is a bestselling author, speaker, and decision-making consultant. Her latest book, How to Decide is already earning rave reviews and her previous one, Thinking in Bets, became a national bestseller.

As a former professional poker player, Annie won more than $4 million in tournament poker before retiring from the game in 2012. 

If you're anything like most people, you probably don't have much of a process for making decisions but what if decision making was a learnable skill? Annie has dedicated herself to teaching it through her books and consulting

In this episode we discuss:
- What games like poker, chess and backgammon can teach us about decision making
- How to learn effectively from your experiences without becoming biased by outcomes
- How to overcome analysis paralysis and eliminate unnecessary decisions

This was a great wide-ranging conversation with a lot of practical applications that will help you combat your own biases, address your weaknesses and become a better and more confident decision-maker.

Mar 17, 2021

Joel Christensen is a Professor of Classics at Brandeis University and author of the book The Many Minded Man. He also posts regularly on the popular Classics-oriented website Sententiae Antiquae. 

The Many Minded Man explores Homer's Odyssey through a modern psychological lens, focusing on how it reflects the workings of the human mind and provides a model for coping with the challenges of chance and fate.

In this episode we discuss:

- The concept of agency and how The Odyssey helps us to understand what we can control
- How to use the power of storytelling to make sense of your life and the world around you
- What modern psychology can learn from Homer's Odyssey and Iliad

This was a wonderful conversation centred on some of the greatest stories ever told, which will show you how storytelling can shape a sense of agency and provide solutions to help you avoid destructive patterns.

Mar 10, 2021

Minter Dial is an international speaker and award-winning author, who focuses on the topics of leadership, branding and transformation. He has written three books including his latest You Lead: How Being Yourself Makes You a Better Leader.

In this episode we discuss:

- How Minter's experience observing 9/11 in New York changed his values
- The 4 paradoxes we all have to navigate in a modern business context
- What Minter learned from making a documentary about his grandfather

This conversation was remarkably insightful and wide ranging and in it, you'll discover the mindsets and skillsets required for transformational leadership and how to facilitate meaningful dialogue.

Mar 3, 2021

Christian Busch is a Professor at NYU and LSE and the author of the bestselling book, The Serendipity Mindset. He is also the co-founder of two thriving communities - Sandbox, a global community of young innovators, as well as of Leaders on Purpose, an organisation convening leading CEOs.

In this episode we discuss:
- The mindset needed to integrate serendipity into your career and life
- How to plan and set goals without over optimising and obsessing about efficiency
- How to keep a community fresh whilst maintaining the core values

This was a great conversation that will give you the mindset and skillset to use the unpredictability of life to your advantage and create your own luck.

Feb 24, 2021

Michelle Weise is the author of Long-Life Learning: Preparing for Jobs that Don’t Even Exist Yet.

She is an entrepreneur-in-residence and senior advisor at Imaginable Futures and her work over the last decade has concentrated on preparing working-age adults for the jobs of today and tomorrow.

In this episode we discuss:

- The current state of the landscape in workplace training and higher education
- The blend of skills we'll need to develop individually and as a society to thrive in the future
- What Michelle learned from working with legendary Professor Clayton Christensen

If you're interested in the intersection between the future of education and work this conversation is for you as well as giving you with plenty of original insight into how to direct your own career in a rapidly changing environment.

Feb 17, 2021

Tom Vanderbilt is a journalist and author of the book Beginners: The Curious Power of Lifelong Learning. In this conversation we discuss:

- The pain and joy of being an amateur and why it's so important
- Tom's criteria for learning new skills and picking teachers
- The unexpected benefits of picking up new skills

The limiting beliefs that stop us from learning new things are often so difficult to overcome because they're invisible and in this conversation, we map the territory so you can break through and feel good about becoming a beginner again.

Feb 10, 2021

Oli Barrett is a super connector named "the most connected man in Britain" by Wired magazine, who has received an MBE for services to business. In this episode we discuss:

- The 5 strategies for staying in touch with people
- The components of a good cold email or long-shot as Oli calls them
- How to create space for meaningful conversations online

I've learned a lot from Oli in the last few years and if you apply a fraction of what he discusses here to your network, you'll be in a very different place a year from now.

Feb 5, 2021

Anne Laure Le Cunff, founder of Ness Labs, an online school and community on mindful productivity. She's an ex-Googler, and holds a masters in Applied Neuroscience from King's College London, while her work has been featured in WIRED, Forbes, the FT and Rolling Stone.

In this episode we discuss:

- How Anne-Laure's personal values have changed over the course of her career
- Anne-Laure's system for consistently producing content online
- The concept of an anti library and how that relates to metacognition

This was a great conversation –– whether you're looking for some creative inspiration or techniques on publishing more, this episode has you covered.

Jan 28, 2021

Thomas Moore is a best selling author, international speaker and esteemed psychotherapist. This is Part 2 of my conversation with Thomas and in it we discuss:

- The movement of archetypal psychology and the art of creative collaboration
- The thinkers who have advanced our understanding of the human psyche
- How the pandemic has affected the soul aspects of our work experience

We also touch on the taboo around money in our society and how it relates to work. I hope you find Thomas' ideas as valuable as I have.

Jan 22, 2021

Thomas Moore is a best selling author, international speaker and esteemed psychotherapist. He has written 25 books about the soul, finding meaningful work and doing religion in a fresh way. In this episode we discuss:

- The idea of having a calling, when this is naive and when it isn't
- How Thomas has written 25 books in his career without retiring to a cabin in the woods
- The distinction between soul and spirit and why it matters for everyone

As Thomas himself puts it, so many of the problems we experience are not ones of knowledge but of imagination. I hope this conversation will be as much of a perspective shifter for you as it was for me.

Jan 14, 2021

Evan Carmichael runs a successful YouTube channel which distills the mindsets and skillsets from the world's top performers in sports, business and entertainment. In this episode we discuss:

- The relationship between belief and action that every creator has to navigate
- The systems and processes needed to create a thriving YouTube channel
- What Evan has learned from studying some of the world's top performers

Whether you're looking to start a YouTube channel, podcast or newsletter, this episode will give you the mindsets and approaches you need to succeed.

Jan 6, 2021

Margaret Heffernan is a former CEO of 5 companies, acclaimed TED speaker and author of six books including her latest, Uncharted. In this episode we discuss:

- How to pursue a career as a series of experiments
- The problems with modern forecasting in an uncertain environment
- The dangers of prioritising efficiency in an uncertain world and the human qualities needed to thrive in it

This episode will give you great practical advice for navigating the world we live in as well as a fresh perspective on the most important questions of our time.

Dec 16, 2020

Josh Kaufman is an entrepreneur, researcher, and author of three bestselling books – The Personal MBA, The First 20 Hours, and How to Fight a Hydra.

This is Part 2 of my conversation with Josh, so if you haven't already, I recommend you go back and listen to Part 1 where we discussed:

  • The concept of exploration/exploitation and how it helps you decide what to work on
  • The system Josh uses for choosing what to outsource
  • How Josh applied the fundamental law of marketing to his book Personal MBA

In this second part, we cover:

  • How to overcome akrasia defined as a lack of self-control or acting against your better judgment
  • The autofocus method Josh uses to manage his to-do list and the research methods he's used to produce 3 bestselling books
  • The need to acknowledge tradeoffs in business and life and the dangers of optimising something too early
Nov 4, 2020

Josh Kaufman is an entrepreneur, researcher, and author of three bestselling books – The Personal MBA, the First 20 Hours, and How to Fight a Hydra. I had Josh on the podcast previously where we spoke about the power of storytelling for promoting behaviour change and mastering complex projects.

Josh's book The Personal MBA provides a crash course in business by covering timeless principles and recently hit its 10th Anniversary. The 10th Anniversary of the podcast was an excellent excuse to get him back on the podcast for another chat, which was so good and went on so long, that I've split it into 2 parts.

In this first part, we discuss:

  • The concept of exploration/exploitation and how that can help you decide what to work on
  • The system Josh uses for choosing what to outsource
  • How Josh applied the fundamental law of marketing to his book Personal MBA

We also cover the five sections of business value creation, marketing, sales, value delivery, and finance that Josh structures in the business section of the book, and in Part 2 we'll touch on some of his ideas around people and systems as well as his research methods.

Oct 24, 2020
Paul Kirschner is a renowned educational psychologist and author. He is an Emeritus Professor of Educational Psychology at the Open University of the Netherlands Guest Professor at the Thomas More University of Applied Science in Mechelen, Belgium and owner of kirschner-ED.

His most recent book How Learning Happens, explores 28 key works on learning and teaching, chosen from the fields of educational psychology and cognitive psychology, and discusses what they mean in practice. He's also written books on Evidence Informed Learning Design and Urban Myths about Learning and Education.

In this episode we discuss:

  • The educational researchers that have inspired Paul and laid the foundations for the field
  • Why teaching is an art informed by a science, and how teachers should incorporate research on learning into their process
  • The concept of self efficacy and how our beliefs about our abilities impact our performance

We also discuss when students should learn about how learning happens, the importance of teachers in goal setting and the debate on domain-specific vs domain-general skills. 

Oct 21, 2020

In this episode I'll reflect on my experience building the podcast over the last few years and share some of the lessons I've learned about the creative process from 150 episodes. I discuss:

  • How being willing to look foolish is the starting point of every great creative achievement
  • The importance of promoting your own work and how to get over resistance to doing it
  • The severe consequences of not doing creative work as a creative person

I hope these insights will prove useful for you. Thank you for listening to the MetaLearn Podcast!

Sep 30, 2020

Ben Saunders is one of the world’s leading polar explorers and an acclaimed keynote speaker. He is the 3rd person in history to ski solo to the North and South poles and holds the record for the longest ever polar journey on foot. In this episode we discuss:

  • The daily life of a polar explorer including the training, the fundraising and the trekking
  • The nature of motivation and grit and how Ben's lessons from polar explorations can be transferred to your daily life
  • How to quit or ask for help when you need it - Ben recounts a tough decision he had to make and how it's influenced the way he operates

Ben's experience is unique and inspirational. The amount of obstacles he had to overcome mentally and physically to do what he did is right at the limit of human potential and I hope it will inspire you to dream a little bigger and grind a little harder.

Sep 16, 2020

Jack Butcher is a designer, entrepreneur and the founder of Visualize Value, a content platform teaching people to communicate through design and build great online products. In this conversation we discuss

- The principles of design that separate forgettable brands from iconic ones
- How to productize your skills and standout in the new economy
- The curriculum building methods Jack has used for his successful courses

So if you want to learn more about visual communication, or separate your income from your time, this episode has you covered.

Jul 22, 2020

Anna Gát is the founder of the Interintellect, a global community and talent platform for public intellectuals. In this episode we discuss:

- The moments that change lives – so called 'Damascus moments' that lead to personal transformation – and whether these moments can be forced.
- What it means to be an adult in an age where there are no clear transitions set out by society anymore and how we can manage that process ourselves.
- The notion of vocation – whether we all have something we're uniquely capable of doing, the process for discovering that and the need to harmonise your dreams with your practical reality.

I'm really impressed by what Anna is doing with the Interintellect and she's definitely spent a lot of time thinking about these questions in depth, so I'm sure you'll find this discussion valuable.

Jul 15, 2020

Sam Sethi is an award winning radio presenter, podcaster and entrepreneur who hosts the podcast Sam Talks Technology. In this episode we discuss:

- How to apply second curve thinking in your career to stay futureproof
- The future of podcasting and how listening habits differ across the world
- The cutting edge of voice tech and what's on the way

I'm becoming increasingly curious about the future of podcasting and voice tech and Sam was the perfect person to get into the weeds with on this, as well as providing some great insights on career, the army and much more.

Jun 24, 2020

Erica Young an expert in the field of network science and founder of the Reliants Project, a blog and podcast that educates people about the invisible impact of networks on our lives. In this episode we discuss:

- The networking myths that hold people back from proactively building relationships
- How understanding network science can help you progress in your career
- The habits of superconnectors, including running events and making introductions

We also talk about some of the core concepts in the field of network science, what the pandemic has done to our networks and much more.

Jun 18, 2020

Anna Gát is the founder of the Interintellect, a global community and talent platform for public intellectuals. In this conversation we discuss:

- How to build a thriving intellectual community and the inspiration behind the Interintellect
- Why utility tyranny and over optimisation is so harmful and how to combat it
- The mindsets and processes involved in facilitating great conversations

We also talk about Anna's educational experience which included managing Hungarian rockbands, her favourite lockdown books and podcasts and much more.

Jun 3, 2020

Anthony Metivier is a world renowned Memory Expert, the Founder of the blog and author of the new book The Victorious Mind.

In this episode we discuss:
- The importance of metaphors and analogies for understanding the mind
- How to master meditation and safeguard your mental wellbeing
- How to navigate the world of self-help effectively

We also speak about the cultural conversation around mental health and the nature of knowledge. 

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