July 2, 2018


#01 – Tim Ferriss: depression, psychedelics, and emotional resilience

"It’s very hard for people to talk their way out of something that they didn’t talk their way into." —Tim Ferriss

by Peter Attia

Read Time 6 minutes

I couldn’t think of a better guest to kick this thing off. Tim is not only one of my closest friends, but also is the one who most persistently encouraged me to launch a podcast.


In this episode, Tim talks both experientially and from his own deep dive into the literature of psychedelics and mental health. Tim is shifting his focus from investing in startups to funding experiments that he hopes will establish more reliable knowledge and therapeutic options for those suffering from anxiety, depression, and addiction.

If this topic even remotely interests you, I can’t recommend Tim’s podcast with Michael Pollan, author of How to Change Your Mind, enough. (You should definitely read Pollan’s book as well.) Even if you’ve never had any exposure to psychedelics or their potential applications, I think you’ll find this subject matter really interesting, and I was very grateful for Tim to be so open and honest about his experiences.

Tim also shared his short list of acquired wisdom he returns to most reliably, which might be worth the price of admission alone.

We discuss:

  • Tim’s history of depression and his TED Talk on his close call with suicide;
  • The type of thinking that triggers Tim’s downward spirals;
  • Tim’s transformative experience with ayahuasca;
  • How Tim’s experience and research has led him to focus on furthering the science of psychedelics and mental health;
  • What some of the meditation modalities, and meditation apps, are out there, why can meditation be so hard to do, but also worthwhile to stick with;
  • Why Tim made a big commitment (more than $1 million) to funding scientific research, and to psilocybin and MDMA research, in particular;
  • From all the habits and tools that Tim has learned, the five things that he returns to most reliably; and
  • More.

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Tim Ferriss

Tim Ferriss has been listed as one of Fast Company‘s “Most Innovative Business People” and one of Fortune‘s “40 under 40.” He is an early-stage technology investor/advisor (Uber, Facebook, Shopify, Duolingo, Alibaba, and 50+ others) and the author of five #1 New York Times and Wall Street Journal bestsellers, including The 4-Hour Workweek and Tools of Titans: The Tactics, Routines, and Habits of Billionaires, Icons, and World-Class Performers. The Observer and other media have called Tim “the Oprah of audio” due to the influence of The Tim Ferriss Show podcast, which is the first business/interview podcast to exceed 200 million downloads.

Tim on Facebook: Tim Ferriss

Tim on Instagram: @timferriss

Tim on Twitter: @tferriss

Tim’s website: tim.blog

Tim’s podcast: tim.blog/podcast

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