Week 6: Your Elephants – the weekly mechanic for your mind and soul 🧠

In a very great medium article, Nick Crocker outlined the idea of a personal group of ‘elephants’, a group of four or five people who you regularly and intentionally do life with.

Crocker says these are the people you should feel comfortable being transparent about:

  • Your bank balance.

  • Personal insecurities that you may not have shared with other people.

  • Doubts about your most important relationships.

The article breaks down how often you should meet up (weekly minimum) and how to layout your conversations, what exercises you should do together, and so forth.

David Deida in his book Way of the Superior Man (look beyond the ‘woohoo’ title, must-read book, check out my notes here if you’re a Constant Student member) suggests that men should form small groups that meet on a weekly basis, where they pull no punches and go deep on what is happening in their lives. Basically, they should use this environment to call each other out on their bullshit, and push one another to level up.

Applying this to you 👦

I find the outline for the Elephants a bit detailed to read through, but I have experienced my own versions of this in everyday life.

  • ‘Cool Mac University’, which is the name of a Sydney-based cafe I frequent on Sundays to meet with a tight knit group of deep-thinking friends to discuss everything from life to the cosmos and everything inbetween

  • The Constant Student Community — which has weekly calls and is a useful format for finding this sort of smaller and more intimiate tribe remotely (at first).

  • The 530 Club is another example that is rippling through communities right now, which again, utilises the local cafe as the meeting point, enabling people from the local community to be accountable to ‘an hour of power’ in the morning.

Benefits 🎈

For me, this sort of close-knit and intentional group has a major impact.

It impacts personal clarity, which flows into all areas of life, gets new perspectives on key issues with greater ease, and ensures that you spend less time in your own echo chambers of misshapen thoughts and worries.

It’s kind of like taking your car to the mechanic every week… if your car were your mind and soul… and being able to test it, replace parts, improve things and what not.

Anti-siloism 🥇

I’m starting a movement, it’s being called ‘anti-siloism’. It’s basically this idea that we all (needlessly) do things on our own, that should be done collaboratively. How about that?

  • Career (solo pursuit)

  • Family (nuclear model instead of the rural, old world model of it takes a village to raise a child).

  • Brainstorming (people sit in a room on their own, for weeks. When you’re surrounded by people, they tell you to stop over-thinking and just execute)

  • Your deeply held ideas (think more collaboratively, bounce your deeply held assumptions and insecurities off other people so you benefit from the right perspectives).

If you’re going to level up and lead, you need to get to the core. The most intimate and sensitive parts of you are those that most define you — if you don’t expose them to light, they do grow moldy over time.

That’s why we need to cultivate more of the environments for this communal means of execution.


Shipped 🚢

  1. A new type of educational, intentional, ‘build-your-own-adventure’ style program to ease the passage between high school and the scary adult world. This is the work of Byron Dempsey and myself, with an information night on Tuesday the 3rd of August at 7pm AEST (register through the link here).

  2. From the Constant Student Community, Lachlan Tosh has launched his exciting e-commerce store, Fresh Hydration, which sells his PureIQ bottle that sterilises water on the go with UV technology!

Books 📚

This week I read The Premonition: A Pandemic Story by Michael Lewis about the onset of COVID-19, the bureaucracy within the USA healthcare system and the few small ‘champions’ working to combat it.