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A.J. Jacobs: The Importance of Self-Delusion in the Creative Process

About this talk

How can we apply the idea of method acting to our business lives? This is the question that lifehacker and bestselling author A.J. Jacobs tackles in this insightful (and highly entertaining) talk on the benefits of faking it until you make it. Through a series of examples from his own life, Jacobs shows just how much our behavior shapes our thoughts and our perceptions. Thus, if we want to change our attitude about something, the best way is to “act as if.”

A.J. Jacobs, Author

A.J. Jacobs is the author of four New York Times bestsellers, including The Year of Living Biblically (about his quest to follow every rule of the Bible as literally as possible); The Know-It-All (which chronicles the year he spent reading all 33 volumes of the Encyclopedia Britannica); and Drop Dead Healthy (about his attempt to become the healthiest person alive).

He is the editor at large at Esquire magazine. He has appeared on The Colbert ReportThe Today ShowGood Morning America, and Oprah, among others, and is a contributor to NPR. He lives in New York with his wife and sons.

Comments (3)

    I am in complete agreement regarding his self-delusion being a key component of success. His accounts of his books are very insightful and witty, I am a big fan of his narratives as he conveys our modern reactions to things that supposedly value. Many of the ideas that we hold as sacrosanct are upon closer inspection, kind of ridiculous! I am reminded of President Obama’s story, in which he campaigned for a House of Representatives seat. He describes being the last participants in parades, right before the clean-up crews, or of being at press conferences in which his campaign was lucky to have one reporter. He would go onto lose that election. Imagine that he wasn’t optimistic or even deluded, chances are that we would not have made it to the presidency.

  • growthguided

    Understanding the space between your limitations and the end result is a difficult task. I love this story, thank you! @GrowthGuided

  • Nina Mierowska
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