I Am Always Scared

As I’m writing this, I’m about to interview Justice Sonia Sotomayor.

The first time a Supreme Court Justice has ever been on a podcast.

The first, first time.

As usual, I am very nervous. I’m terrified.

I’ve done 500 episodes of “The James Altucher Show” and maybe 1,000 other podcasts but I still get nervous before each one.

EACH one. I always want to cancel about one minute before it starts.

What if the guest doesn’t like me? What if the guest thinks I’m stupid?

What if my listeners think I asked stupid questions? What if I’m too shy? What if I’m not prepared enough?

I was thinking this for the past week about this podcast. Read three books about her. Watched commencement addresses, interviews, etc.

And then I forget everything about 30 seconds before the podcast begins. And the terror begins.

I’m honored she agreed to come on. I’m not sure why she agreed to my podcast but I’m grateful.

Before coming here, I did a little survey of my friends: If you have a parking ticket, can you appeal it all the way up to the Supreme Court?

Nobody had a clue: yes or no.

So… I’m afraid I have to ask this naive question. Because I don’t know either.

But then I’m going to focus on the incredible challenges she went through on her way to becoming a Justice.

Not talking politics or issues or cases. I have no interest.

I want to know how to persist. How to be good. How to be knowledgeable. How to really build up a strong network of connections and mentors.

Some of her challenges: diabetes, born impoverished in the South Bronx, broken family in various ways, other challenges.

Her current challenge: one of the nine people tasked with interpreting the Constitution for the country.

How does one develop the “First Principles” required to do that? How does one develop the unique view on the world?

How does one speak and write well enough to express that vision, so it can be interpreted by future laws and future judges?

How does one become a voice for all others with challenges who think they don’t have permission to succeed?

I hope she doesn’t think I’m stupid. I hear her down the hall.

Have to go. Scared.

Reducing Stress & Anxiety 101 

Fear is a direct result of our stress and our anxiety.

On my podcast, Jordan Peterson helps me work through these things (and he also gives me diet advice).

We created a fun little animation to go with it.

(Click here for the video.)



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