My guest today, Zack Friedman recognized a pattern in humans. Some people create lemonade from lemons and others don’t. His book, The Lemonade Life, is the playbook for how to choose a pathway that eludes many, and can lead to more fulfillment and success.
About The Lemonade Life
In his ground breaking new book, The Lemonade Life, Friedman starts with a fundamental question: What drives success? It’s not only hard work, talent, and skill. The most successful people have one thing in common, the power to flip five internal “switches.” We all have these five switches, and when activated, they are the secret to fuel success, create happiness, and conquer anything.
The Lemonade Life is filled with inspirational and practical advice that will teach you:
- Why you should write yourself a $10 million check
- Why your career depends on the Greek alphabet
- Why you need ikigai in your life
- How Judge Judy can help you have better work meetings
- How these twenty questions will change your life
Learn from the entrepreneur who failed 5,126 times before becoming a billionaire, the fourteenth-century German monk who helped reinvent Domino’s Pizza, the technology visionary who asked himself the same question every morning, the country music icon who bought more than one hundred million books, and the ice cream truck driver who made $110,237 in less than one hour.
About Zack Friedman
Zack Friedman is the bestselling author of the blockbuster book, The Lemonade Life,
which Apple named one of “Fall’s Biggest Audiobooks” and a “Must-Listen.” Zack has inspired
millions of people through his powerful insights, including more than 50 million who have read
his advice in Forbes, where he is read by more than 2 million readers a month. Zack is the
founder and CEO of Make Lemonade, a leading personal finance comparison website that
empowers you to live your best financial life. Previously, Zack was a CFO, a hedge fund
investor, and worked at Blackstone, Morgan Stanley, and the White House. He was also named
Revolutionary CFO of the Year in the Middle East. Zack holds degrees from Harvard, Wharton,
Columbia, and Johns Hopkins.
Book Website: lemonadelifebook.com
Make Lemonade website: makelemonade.co
Aaron : One of the great things about the lemonade life is it doesn't matter what happened yesterday. Okay. It doesn't matter what, what happened last week or last year, every time you get up every day you get up, you have a new shot at greatness, brothers and sisters. Welcome back to another episode of work life, play, where we are on a hunt to find sustainable rhythms, to lean into and learn the art of living. How do we live in such a way that we can keep going? And how do we pursue work? That we love meaning and purpose connections, relationally connections to the world around us and our communities. And how do we show up in such a way where we're actually operating out of a whole heart?
One of our guides today that I've invited in is Zack Friedman. He wrote a book called the lemonade life, and we talk about the courage to pivot. We talk about the chasm of can’t, daring disruptors. We talk about how we spend like 70,000 hours at work in the light, our career life. You better love what you do. We talk about what drives people. What makes us happy? We talk about how to actually have switches in our life that we can, we can pull. We can manage in a way that are influencing our ability to live on purpose and make our highest value contribution. So, settle in, enjoy this conversation and pick up lemonade life, wherever you intake and digest books, you can do this friends.
I just spent the last hour with you while you narrated your book. I was really curious about in chapter two, you were talking about, I would call them like the naysayers, the folks that say stuck in rut and they just keep living the lemon life. So tell us about those folks and how that translates for you is the offer for life that you have in lemonade life of what the alternative would be for them.
Zack Freidman : Absolutely. It's great to be here. So in my book, the lemonade life, there's really two types of life that you can, you can live so to speak. There's the lemon life, where about 99% of people in the world, unfortunately live, whether they realize it or not. And then there's this better life it's called the lemonade life. And what you're referring to are the folks who are stuck in the lemon life. And those are people who are really settling for less than their best self they're leading a life of settling and pretending chasing. They really can never live up to their full potential.
The folks that we meet in the lemon life, there are three of them. The most prominent are folks who are called eternal excuses. These are folks who, you know, you've all met them before, right? They're folks who are just complaining about everything. There's always an excuse. I'm too old. I don't have enough money. I can never do that. You'll never succeed at this business. You'll never start a podcast. You can't get any listeners. It's never going to work. And they're just always kind of making these excuses. And they live in this, this artificial fence that they've constructed for their lives. And it's the reason they can never succeed. And so those are the eternal excuses. You've seen them before. Your parents, your, your aunt, your uncle, your friends, it's the naysayers in life.
Another group of folks you'll meet in the lemon life, uh, are people who are called steady settlers. These are kind of the folks who follow the straight arrow, you know, live in the suburbs, have two and a half kids. Um, they, they have the same job and they, but they don't like it, but they just kind of do it for appearances. We’ve all met people like this before. It could be at a backyard, barbecue or a school function, or even in your social circles. They’re people keep up with the Joneses. So they're always kind of chasing other people. They live, they live a life of dependence rather than independence. And so we've all met steady settlers before.
And then the third group of people who live the lemon life are called change chasers. And these are kind of like your crazy uncle, who's going on to the next best investment idea, trying to make a quick buck. They’re kind of fake entrepreneurs. Cause the lemon life is built on, on pretending and, and settling and chasing. It’s like the digital currency, they don't know anything about digital currency, but suddenly, they're just buying up digital currency. And then if that doesn't work out, they've kind of left that because they don't want to actually do the work to make money or build a business. And then they jumped to the next opportunity. The next opportunity, the next opportunity. It's not just in business. We see people like this who jumped from friend to friend to friend or relationship, relationship, relationship. And these are the people who kind of stuck living the lemon life.
There are more people live the lemon life, but these are three very popular folks that you meet. So those are some of the folks that you'd meet, uh, early on in the book, the lemonade life.
Aaron: Yeah, that's great. So Zack, what so rewind for me. Why, why do you care about this lemonade versus lemon life? Why does it matter to you?
Zack Freidman : It's one of the most important things in my life is really helping people to discover what's their life purpose, why we lead our life. You know, I'm fundamentally interested in the human condition, the human spirit, the human mind, and understanding what makes people tick, what drives them. You know, I originally wrote this book for several reasons.
One, I was really fascinated on what really drives success. I know we're all taught this, you know, definition really early on. It's like, you know, you go to school, you get good grades, you get a good job, you work hard, then you retire. And that's kind of the traditional model that we all live, but that there's gotta be more than that because it just, it doesn't make sense that that's the life we get to live in. And there's no really, you know, different paths that you can take. Um, because you know, it really kind of negates, like where do you find, when do you have time for happiness, right? I mean, you might have these milestones in your life. You get married, you have a child, they have other relationships, you have friends, but it seems like we're kind of having this life of deferred happiness, where we don't get it until we were tired, but then we're already, you know, at a certain age where a lot of life has passed by, and that doesn't really sit well with me.
I started studying these leaders and finding out what really drives success. And I started looking at leaders in business and politics and sports and other facets. And when I found where like these five common characteristics, right? These five behaviors, these switches as I call them in the book, and these are five internal switches that I saw across all of these great people who had, who had accomplished so much in life. And what I found is that all of these switches actually live inside all of us. And the book is set up to kind of explore how, how do we all embrace these switches? Because they're literally inside all of us. And these switches are like behavioral characteristics. I came up with this concept of lemonade life.
Unlike the lemon life, which is about settling and pretending and chasing the lemonade life is leading life on your terms through purpose and possibility and purpose is the underlying reason why you do what you do every single day. It's the reason you get up. It's the reason you want to accomplish things. It's the why in your life and possibilities, endless opportunity. And when you connect purpose and possibility in your life, and you do it through action, that's when you get to lead the lemonade life. And so that's what it's all about for me.
Aaron: I'm in, I'm a convert. So what I find is I love the message and an offer, an invitation and the framing language we're using in it. And I'd love to understand there's a book, the second mountain David Brooks. He's New York times columnist. What I love about it is that he talks about people. Most people spend most of their life pursuing a first mountain, which is the conquests careers. What he talks about is that for those of us that discover a more purpose based, and in your case, possibility equals action based framing.
They've usually encountered some sort of a Valley, whether that's because they were knocked off, the first mountain, got to the top of it, decided that it wasn't that great, or just found themselves some, some life circumstances in a Valley to then re-envision what a second mountain would be more purposeful, meaningful. So just curious, what setbacks have you experienced that helped you make these conclusions?
Zack Freidman: That's a great question. And that's a great metaphor as well. You know, I, I'm an entrepreneur. I'm a CEO of a personal finance company called make lemonade, a similar title to the lemonade life. Um, and so I think anyone who's been an entrepreneur and I talk about this in the lemonade life has been told no. I mean, no, all the time. And you know, when I was starting my business, all I heard was no. I mean, people were telling me, you know, how can you start this business?
It's been done before. You'll never raise capital. How are you gonna acquire customers? Do you know how expensive the cost of acquisition is? Um, how are you actually going to build this? Like, should you be giving up what you're doing? And yeah. You know, you just hear no constantly. And it goes back to the people in the, in, in the lemon life, right? It's, it's eternal excuses. And a lot of time people will project their own insecurities onto you. Right. It may be people who are afraid to do the exact things they're telling you not to do. Sometimes it comes out of love. Sometimes it comes out of just not, not being sure of yourself. Um, and if you're an entrepreneur, you know, you are used to being told no all the time, it's okay to listen to feedback. Right. You know, you definitely want to take constructive feedback.
And how do you decide what's constructive? That's really up to you. It's a subjective exercise. But beyond that, you know, if you believe in something in you, you see a path that others don't. I mean, those are the people who get ahead in life, no matter what they're doing. And it's the people who can take those calculated risks and understand the game. They're not always necessarily going to, you know, travel that perfect straight line or that perfect path because paths are messy. Um, but I think, I think that's really is a test of character. And how can you kind of find the passageway that others are not seeing and not being able to listen to the naysayers, you know, when warranted. And I think being able to do that as has to help strengthen me, uh, in my business and, and in my platform and being able to share my message, uh, with people around the world and in particular, the lemonade life is like, you know, you're going to hear a lot of naysayers and you hear a lot of doubters, a lot of, a lot of lemon lifers. And the question is, can you rise above that? Can you flip these five switches to understand yourself better so that you can actually achieve your life purpose and not be constrained by roadblocks or what I call the chasm of can't I'm in the book as well?
Aaron: Love it. All right, Zack. Would you walk us through the five switches that you mentioned?
Zack Freidman: Absolutely. So there, there are five switches in the book and, and they're sections of the book. The five switches, you can remember them easily through an acronym, which is prism. So P R I S M P is for perspective, R is for risk I's for independence. S is for self-awareness and M is for motion. And when you flip all of those five switches, you can move from the lemon life to the lemonade life. And I walked through in the book exactly how to do that. And there's a lot of great inspirational stories from folks who, who have lived those, their names, you all know, um, there's people in the book you've never heard of before. All of them have had something in common where they've kind of created greatness a lot of times out of nothing, or they've created impact, not always financially, but just in ways that have moved people. They’ve been able to do it by flipping or harnessing the power of these five switches.
Aaron: I'd love to hear more about motion.
Zack Freidman: So motions the last switch. And I think fundamentally, a lot of people who are trying to achieve things in life, they almost make it the first switch, right? Motion is all about doing the work. It's about the hustle. It's about the grind. It's about, you know, getting your hands dirty. And I think a lot of people who are practical and oriented, um, which a lot of us are, you know, we just want to kind of get in the arena and that's important, right? Look, I'm not someone who believes in kind of strategizing and, you know, spending, you know, years kind of planning it and never actually executed. I'm, I'm all about the execution. But before you get there, there are fundamental steps that you need to take.
And so motion is actually the last step that you need to do. And I know that sounds contrarian to a lot of people who were just like eager to get in there and look, execution is key. You have to excavate all, all the other switches are irrelevant. If you do not execute, that said, you need to do the other four switches first. And so, you know, motion is all about, you know, various things about how you need to understand your game plan and how you actually get into the arena and get your hands dirty. Because the people who do make progress are the people who, who will get messy, who will get in the arena, who are in the fight. They're not sitting on the sidelines. They're not, they're not in the stadium and the seats watching the game, they're they're in the game. Um, but before you get there, you need to take all these other steps about understanding your perspective, how you make decisions better through risk, how you're independent minded.
And then most importantly is yourself awareness, how you understand yourself, which is talked about a lot, but it's probably the least practiced. And so I talk about in the book, how to, how to really harness the power of self-awareness.
Aaron: So walk us through that. Coach us on how to become more self-aware.
Zack Freidman: Self-awareness has many facets, but you know, I think a first step for anyone to really do. And it's, it's really the hardest because a lot of people will find it corny or they think they don't need to do it. But if you ask, you know, you are ask anyone listening right now, if they really understand themselves, a lot of people are kind of afraid to understand themselves, right? They're, they're afraid they may be a failure in a certain aspect that may be weak. They may not like certain elements of their personality.
And so they kind of shut away from it, right? It's like the doctor's appointment. You don't want to go to that surgery. You don't want to have that shore activity. You're just kind of avoiding. And so you actually have to do the opposite. You actually have to kind of dive in and spend time to understand yourself. So that can be done. You know, as, as you know, as easy as, as half an hour of your time, you could spend obviously longer, you spend days on it, but really just sitting down, you can sit down by yourself, take out a piece of paper. You can do it on your phone, do it on your computer, and just really understand very simply start with your strengths and your weaknesses. And that sounds very obvious and basic, but very few people have actually sat down on a piece of paper and actually written down their strengths and weaknesses.
I'm sure everyone's, you know, very easy can tell you how good they are at everything, but it takes, you know, the people who can really say this is what I'm not good at. I am not good at this. It's very powerful. I'd actually say it. I am not good at this.
Aaron :And what are you not good at?
Zack Freidman : I am not an engineer, for example. So, you know, that's, that's not where my mind is. I'm not a computer programmer, but I run a FinTech company. So, you know, I have team members who try to do that. I don't spend time trying to say, how can I be a better engineer when you understand kind of what you're not good at, um, a skill set, right? If you can find a way to compliment that, not through yourself. I don't think people should try to be great at everything.
So it doesn't mean like, Hey, I'm good at this. I'm terrible at this. I need to prop up all my weaknesses. I don't believe in that. Um, certainly you need like basic skills of course, in getting through life. But like don't spend all your time and effort. Cause your time effort, energy is limited. You have to really focus on building up your strengths. If you're a business owner, this is in your personal life. Either, either find people who can help compliment your weaknesses. So if you're starting a business, for example, maybe it's a partner. Maybe it's outsourcing. Maybe it's hiring people if you can afford it. But don't spend time in life trying to prop up every single week because you cannot be superhuman. But I think identifying day one, like what, you're good at, what you're not good at is really going to get you to a place of inner peace and authenticity that a lot of people lack.
It's also like, it's like having conversations too. Like don't try to be an expert in everything. Right? I know people try to do that. Um, if you're not good at something fundamentally like, just say it, like, I'm not good at this. And people, people will respect you so much more when you can admit that. Right?
Aaron :Yeah. I don't know. Here's what, I don't know. Here's what I'm not good at.
Zack Freidman : Correct. Here's what I am great at. Here's what I'm hearing my strengths. That's really good. And, and it, I think that you, you miss a lot of things in life. If you're not listening, right. The people who can listen more and I've seen this with CEOs, just coming up in my career, people have been successful. There are CEOs who listen to everybody, which is very far and few between and their CEOs are going to tell you the way it's supposed to be.
And I think it's that first bucket. Those are the people who are most successful. I've always tried to listen to other people and get perspectives. Um, because I think anyone can have a great perspective. Anyone can have a great idea. And when you kind of embrace life that way, man, it just, I think it just changes things for you a lot versus the people just kind of, Oh, I already know everything. So I don't really need to, I don't really need to hear what you have to say. And I think those people just miss out on life a lot. And so it really starts with self-awareness. I walked through a number of exercises you can do in the book to be more self-aware about yourself personally or professionally. Um, but I think it's so fundamentally important and it's overlooked. I think the people who are more self-aware become more authentic or believable, more connectable, and those are the people that get ahead in life.
Aaron: Exactly. Tell me more too about, was there a moment in time in terms of chronologically when the light bulb started to come on for you, as you started to see thisthese patterns and these is this been a, you know, multiyear process, was this a single event where you got a Eureka moment?
Zack Freidman : I've started to think about, you know, success and happiness. Um, for a number of years, you know, I, when I was starting my career, I started to look at not only the work that I was doing, but the people that with whom I interacted and their leadership skills and their leadership abilities and, you know, employee satisfaction and how we create better organizations, better teams. Um, I saw that I studied entrepreneurs of, you know, what made them successful, not just their product or their service, but it's more than that, right?
You can't just have like, you know, a popular ice cream flavor and suddenly like everyone's buying it. There has to be more behind that. And so I started, I started studying that, started living it through my business career and then, you know, studying it and then having lunch with Warren buffet, you know, which, which opens the book of the lemonade life. Um, I had this opportunity to go out to Omaha, meet Warren. Buffett's spend a good part of the day with him, with a group of folks, uh, and, and really get to listen to him. And, you know, we, didn't just discuss, you know, the basics of, of, you know, the economy and business, but we really got to understand life purpose and happiness and, and, and doing, doing work and a job that gives you purpose where you're excited to go to work every single day.
And that sounds contrary to a lot of people, because work is just a paycheck. I gave a Ted talk on happiness at work. And, you know, we spend up to 70,000 hours of our life at work, you know, 70,000 hours. And if you don't love what you do for a living, you know, it affects you and, and not everyone, not everyone has a choice. You know, I, I get that, you know, particularly now the tough economic times and everyone has to pay bills, but if you don't love what you do every single day, your life is, is it just hard for it to be happy? And in a lot of ways, because if work is driving you down a bad boss, you don't believe in the product you don't believe in your team. The environment is toxic.
It's very hard for you to not carry that over into your personal life, too much of our time spent there in order to isolate it. You can't isolate your personal life and your professional life. I mean, they are going to be intertwined in some way, it's going to carry over. And I think a lot of people end up chasing things that they don't actually want to do, but they think they're supposed to do either because of social pressure, social norms, they want to fit in. They think it's the path they're supposed to take. You know, it's the person who goes to college and they think they, they have to become a lawyer because that's what their parents are. Or their parents told them, that's how you make money. Or if they're good at science, you have to be a doctor or you're supposed to follow this path. And I think people just end up going down the wrong lane when they're not supposed to go there.
Now it's okay. If you go down that lane, not everyone's going to have this perfect, you know, view of life when they're, when they're in college, but, and it's okay to pivot in life. I mean, I think that's another crucial thing that a lot of people have to do. They're afraid to change course, because look, Oh my God, I'm already in, how can I switch? I've already invested all this time and money. Right? It's like some costs, right? Like far down the trail. I can't just take another one. And they say, you know, look, I've already gone down this path. You know, how can I possibly switch? But I think the people have the courage to pivot to change their path. You know, again, not worrying what other people think like, Oh my God, you're changing your path for 15 years.
Like what? I mean, that sounds ridiculous. Wow. You know, you have a family, you have kids, you have some costs. How could you do that? That looks so strange. Don't worry what people say. I mean, I think so many people are worried what people say. And I think the people, again, who kind of focus on what they're good at, what they're not good at and lead their life for them. It's not about being selfish. It's just about, it's about living a life of independence, where you don't care. What other people have to say about you. Because again, at the end of the day, you're living your life for you. You're living your life for your family. Um, you could be a very generous, uh, very, you know, a highly spirited person who cares about other people, but you have to also make sure that what you're doing is, is what's right for you and not what's right for other people, because they're not necessarily living for you.
You need to make sure that you're taking care of yourself. What you think is right for you, you know, obviously be responsible, think about, you know, where you are. If you're talking from a financial perspective, if you have sunk costs, you have sunk costs. But think about it. There's other opportunities you can, you can conquer in life. And, and that's really understand the lemonade life is like, what are the possibilities that are out there for me? And how can I take hold of them?
And if you're not happy with what you're doing right now, one of the great things about the lemonade life is it doesn't matter what happened yesterday. Okay. It doesn't matter what, what happened last week or last year, every day is a new shot at greatness. I think people just forget that fundamentally. They're like, this is where I am in my life. I'm stuck. I can't do anything. And that is just not true. That is not true. What happens today is irrelevant to what happens tomorrow. Like you, every time you get up every day you get up, you have a new shot at greatness.
Aaron : So Zack, I got a question for you on purpose. You mentioned early on kind of the why, and I'd be curious to hear your perspectives on purpose of like finding purpose, paying attention to when you're on purpose off purpose. When people say, I don't know what my purpose is, walk us through your views on the purpose and why?
Zack Freidman: Purpose is the most important thing in your life. And a lot of people will kind of skirt over that. They'll kind of just be like, yeah, yeah, my purpose is this. And they don't really think about it, what I would implore everyone to do. And I would, I would almost do it right now. When you're listening to this podcast is go grab a piece of paper again on your phone, whatever works for you. And just write down three words, which is my purpose is, and I want you to keep that until the end of this podcast. And then I want you to grab a copy of lemonade life. And then I want you to write down spending really thinking about it, not just like my purpose is this and take five seconds. Cause it sounds super, super easy, but I think it's the most important exercise you can ever do is to understand your life purpose, spend 10, 15, 20 minutes, and actually think fundamentally what drives you in your life : wanting to impact people, it can be your children. It could be your spouse. It could be God, it could be changing the lives of others for the better. It could be creating a business that could solve a problem. It could be a medical breakthrough that could help people, whatever drives you in your life. You have to understand your life purpose. You have to understand it because when you do it just, it makes everything more cohesive and more cogent. And you can understand why you are here, why you do what you do.
Aaron: And what's your, how do you answer that question?
Zack Freidman: Yeah. So for me, everything I do I do for really to create impact is the biggest thing that, that, that, that gets me going is how can I impact people that gives me great joy in life is like, how can I share what I've learned and help other people to achieve what they want to achieve?
How can I create impact for people to way they think the way they experience life. And I do it for my family, so that the idea of my family and creating impact and helping other people, it's something that I consider to be my life purpose. And so if I can create impact in the life of someone in the way that they, their career can change the way they think about life, how they can have more happiness in their life, how they can be inspired, how they can create a new, a new venture and become an entrepreneur. They Excel in their current job. I mean, just ways that I can touch people's lives and make it better. That's what drives me when you know why you're here and what you're trying to accomplish. It's very powerful. And I think it helps provide more direction for people in life. Not just like life is happening to you, right? It's like, like you're taking control of what you want to achieve because you understand what your purpose is. It helps you focus better.
Aaron: Why am I here? So I'm curious what you think, what's your perspective on that? Being evolutionary in that, in different seasons of our life that might change, that might adapt over time as we age or find herself in new circumstances. What's your view on that? Especially as much as you've studied other successful people.
Zack Freidman: That's an excellent question, Aaron. And so your purpose can absolutely change over time. You don't have to keep the same purpose that you have at age 28, 30 and age 50 may be different and that's okay. I think your purpose can change over time. As long as you know, it, obviously you don't want to change your purpose every week, but it's okay to pivot. I mean, again, the lemonade life, as I said earlier, is like every day you have a new shot at greatness and over time, you know, attitudes, change your ideas, change your feelings, change your emotions, change your, your goals change. And that's okay. I mean, again, you want to have a fundamental grounding. I think that's the most important thing, but once you have those fundamental life principles, you know, the ethics you live by, um, the goals you have for your life, the behaviors that you want to employ and interacting with others and for yourself, once you have that, that, that foundation, I think it's okay to, to alter your purpose over time.
If it changes, don't change it too frequently. Um, but it is okay to do that. As long as you have that, that fundamental, um, that keeps you, you know, the good person that you're aspiring to be in life.
Aaron: I'm curious about from your perspective on the lemonade life is how much of it is mindset and like I'd call it like operating model mantras, and then how much of it is like practical daily tactics.
Zack Freidman: Another great question. So, the lemonade life is all about practice. It's not a theoretical book. It's not like just think happy thoughts and you know, you're able to achieve the lemonade life is, is a practical playbook. Um, so I think that's, that's important. And I'm glad that you raised that, you know, it is, it is how do we, how do we put this into practice and perspective and mindset is fundamental.
I think that's why it's the first switch P is for perspective. I think you do need to have a certain mindset to be able to have that operating model as, as you said, and it does all start with mindset and mindset is not why, so YouTube clip and get inspired for five minutes, right? I mean, that that's, that will make you happy. It will give you some endorphins initially. Um, but to really have a sustainable mindset to start there, you really need to rewire your brain. And what I mean by that is it doesn't mean that you're happy 24 hours a day, because I think that's, that's a tall order, but happiness does need to be something that's inside of you and the way that you get that happiness and that perspective, um, it's think of it this way. When you confront roadblocks, you confront obstacles, you know, you hit those valleys as you brought up earlier, Aaron, the question is, how do you approach those?
And a lot of people get frustrated. They throw in the towel, they get upset. Um, and the people who are successful, what I call daring disruptors in the, in the book, the lemonade life, those are people who lead the lemonade life. The people who are daring disruptors when they confront those valleys, they know how to navigate them. And they use kind of the power of opportunity and possibility to see what's on the other side of that mountain. That's in front of them when they're stuck in the Valley and they're looking up and they see the mountain. A lot of people just see the mountain and they're like, Oh God, the mountains in front of me and I'm stuck in the Valley or do they say, you know what? Like there is something more beautiful on the other side of that mountain. And if you have the power to do that, then you've, you've been, you've started that process of rewiring your mind and rewiring your mindset and your brain.
And it's the people who can kind of go through those valleys, right? And they can go from peak to Valley or from peak to peak, to peak and then a Valley. And they're able to kind of come out better on the other side. And that's having the mindset of believing in the power of possibility and opportunity that they know how to confront those. And I think it sounds simple, but it's a skill that takes time to acquire. And I think once you've done that once you know how to confront the tough challenges and roadblocks in life, that's how you've really changed your perspective. And so, so there are these fundamental principles of mindset and belief, but the whole, the whole book is really about practice. It's all practical things that you can start doing today to make your life better, to make your business better, your relationships better. How you think about the world.
It is, it is a practical book, but it does have certain key principles that you need to incorporate into your life. Key behaviors, key switches, um, so that you can, you can take over those practices in your life and make them a daily ritual.
Aaron: You mentioned a couple tips they can do, you know, by the book, sit down and look at these three words.
Zack Freidman: My purpose is, is there another, micro-practice like just the first point, your toes in a direction to get started. What are the, where do you help people begin? There are many exercises. I'll give you one that's that's in the book. And it's in the self-awareness part of the book. Um, many people have heard of, uh, a SWOT analysis, SW T and essentially, it's done for businesses.
It looks at a SWOT. So assets were strengths w for weakness, over opportunities T for threats, and you can actually do that for your, for yourself. Um, you can do it for your business, um, but you, you can also do it for yourself. And so we talked about strengths and weaknesses, right? What am I good at? What am I not good at? Um, but you can also bring in the O and the T. So the O being opportunities, what are the opportunities that I have in front of me? Um, they can be personal opportunities. Um, they can be in your business. You know, we're, we're, we're places that I can win in life. Think of it that way, or when in my business and, and T are the threats, right? What are the, if you're talking about a business, what are my competitors? What are the competitive dynamics in the, in the industry or in your personal life?
You know, what are the roadblocks that are standing in front of you? And once you have kind of those, that quadrant, so to speak of SWOP, strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats, you can start to connect the strengths and opportunities, right? Cause you can do, you can bring those together. So what am I good at? And what are the opportunities in front of me? So again, not like, Hey, I'm not good at being, you know, growing up earlier, like, Hey, I'm not, I'm not good at being an engineer. So how can I look for like a business of engineering? Cause maybe I should get better at that. And there's like a big opportunity there. Like if that's not your thing, like, go, don't go do it. I think some people try to pretend right there.
Some people are like, I'm supposed to like invest in digital currencies right now because those are really hot. And I read about it and I'm just gonna go do it. Cause people are going to be making money, but they don't fundamentally understand it. And so I would just remind everybody that there are opportunities to make money or be successful in like any, any career, literally like you can work in anything. You don't have to just go to the flashy things on wall street or Silicon Valley. You can start a business in your backyard and be successful. Um, even if you live in a small town, I think that's like a fundamental principle. People never talk about you don't have to like chase something, like understand what you're good at and connect to the strengths to the opportunities. Not, not like what's the hot sector like, right. That would be like, I'm not necessarily good at this, but I'll just do it anyway. Cause it's a hot opportunity.
Most likely you will fail. Maybe some people get lucky and they're able to do it without understanding it. That's fine. Um, but focus on your strengths, connect those to the opportunities, understand the threats. I mean, that's definitely important obviously, you know, in life, you need to understand if things are coming at you, particularly if you're a business owner or you're an entrepreneur, you need to understand the dynamics. Um, but more people should be focusing on their strengths and opportunities. Then weaknesses and threats still be mindful of the threats because it's important for competitive dynamics. Um, but start with the strengths and opportunities to connect in those two together. Because I think that's an easy exercise people can do and it will pay off a lot of dividends.
Aaron: Yeah, that's great. So Zack, while you've been talking, I've been kind of creating my little, uh, notes page here and what I love about your messages, this opener of in your Ted talk of we've spent 70, was it 70,000 hours at work? They would love what you do. And most people, um, find a way to settle to chase or pretend, um, as those that live the lemon lemon life and what you're offering as an alternative to that is a practical playbook where every day he's a new shot at greatness. While we develop the courage to pivot becoming daring disruptors, and learn to leverage this path to possibility and purpose, to experience success in happiness while pulling five switches of perspectives, risk independence, self-awareness in motion. So where do we find all things Zack Friedman?
Zack Freidman: So the Lemon Life, uh, which has been a best seller, I'm very grateful to all the readers around the world is available everywhere. You can find it on Amazon Barnes and noble Walmart target all your local bookstores anywhere else online, where you buy books.
The audio book, which I narrate, as well is available everywhere, audible, Apple, Google. You can also find out more about the book on lemonade lifebook.com and find my personal website, which is Zack freedman.com. My business make lemonade is that make lemonade.com. I speak quite a lot as well. So, you can reach out for speaking firstname.lastname@example.org and then on social media, Zack Friedman Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Zack Friedman on LinkedIn and my Forbes columns over at Forbes. So, if you enjoyed reading those, thank you very much. Appreciate your support. And yeah. Look forward to connecting. I love hearing from folks and readers, people who are passionate about life and, and reach out anytime.
*We’ve done our best for this transcription to accurately reflect the conversation. Errors are possible. Thank you for your patience and grace if you find errors that our team missed.
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