Fantastic Lives & Where to Find Them – Tips from a Comedian (Chris Gethard)

I confess the (first half of the) title was inspired by Ms. J.K.Rowling’s awesome “Fantastic Beasts & Where to Find Them“. And I also confess I loved how Johnny Depp portrayed Grindelwald in the 2nd movie of the series.

P.S. If you guessed the 1st sentence above or agree with the 2nd sentence, I feel like we’d become good friends! Write to me at or on LinkedIn.

Otherwise, I feel like we’d potentially have a nice debate! Also write to me please.

Okay, enough starry eyes 😀 – it’s Friday, time for some FUN! Why don’t we look at tips from a fun comedian on Fantastic Lives & Where to Find Them? Below are my takeaways from the interview of comedian Chris Gethard on the James Altucher Show podcast.

Hack #1. How to Be Bulletproof

Me: Drink bulletproof coffee. HAHAHA! #dry-laughter#

You: Lame joke. BAHHH! #throw-eggs#

Lesson learnt: long way to go before I qualify as a comedian. Here’s what Chris Gothard actually suggested: “Whatever field you’re in, the bar has been set…and when you get there, what you get is a pat on the head – great, so you’ve learned how to do this thing that other people have figured out, but the sooner you can find these alternate avenues or those things nobody sees coming that you can weave into your version of it, this is how you super-cede the bar…when that becomes a comfortable thing, you become a little more bulletproof.

To sum it up:

You are bringing things to the table that they don’t have and they haven’t seen elsewhere. THAT makes you bulletproof.

Chris Gethard

So don’t just aim to reach the bar others have set for you. Aim to super-cede the bar and better still, set a whole new bar that is defined on your terms. And people will start to measure themselves against your terms. Isn’t that more bulletproof than adding oil & butter to your coffee (I think that’s the standard recipe for ‘bulletproof coffee’ – not saying it’s mutually exclusive to being actually bulletproof)?

Hack #2. How to Make Others Jealous of You

This piece of advice technically comes from Chris’ dad, who once said to Chris that he was jealous of his own son. Chris was shocked by one of the rare emotional statements from his usually-tough-no-BS-style dad.

His dad explained the source of his jealousy – and this is one of my favorite quotes from the interview:

When I take a step back and look at you, you’ve never accepted money for a thing you didn’t believe in. And I’m really jealous of that.

Chris Gethard’s dad to Chris

Let that sink in for a moment. It is so important that it is worth repeating – “you’ve never accepted money for a thing you didn’t believe in“. I love this quote – I think it is a much more specific, measurable saying than cliches in the likes of ‘follow your passion’ or ‘do what you love’.

Ask yourself bluntly and answer yourself truthfully: can you say that about yourself? Can you declare that about yourself, to the whole world, with pride and without shame? Can you shout at the top of your voice: “Yes, this is who I am?”

It is okay if you cannot. Most people cannot. Some people have never been able to reject money for something they did not fully believe in.

Make sure you are not taking the money and selling a piece of you.

Hack #3. You Gotta Do What You Gotta Do for the STAGE

Why are you here? Why are you on the stage – the stage of stand-up comedy and the stage of life?

Here is advice from two comedians:

You gotta do what you do for the stage. The seats owe you nothing.

Chris Gethard

Brian Regan (comedian) said when the audience is silent and not responding how he would like, he reminds himself he’s on stage for himself. He wants to make himself laugh and have fun, and then he pictures himself in the audience, because at least he seems himself laughing.

James Altucher

This reminds me of what US former president Roosevelt said about “the man in the arena”: “It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and bloodif he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.

And be in the arena for the arena itself. Picture yourself patting yourself on the back for the best blow you’ve given out and feeling proud. Because you are here to grow strong.

And be on the stage for the stage itself. Picture yourself sitting in the audience and laughing. Because you are here to have fun.

To conclude, I leave you with these motivational lyrics from the you-know-which-song:

Buddy, you’re a young man, hard man
Shouting in the street, gonna take on the world someday
You got blood on your face, you big disgrace
Waving your banner all over the place
* * *
We will, we will rock you
We will, we will rock you

Happy Friday everyone – go ROCK & ROLL!

What are some moments that inspired you? Please share with me at or on LinkedIn.

What motivational music do you listen to? I really like this workout remix of We Will Rock You. Drop me a comment on your favorites or write to me – let’s get the beats rolling!

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One thought on “Fantastic Lives & Where to Find Them – Tips from a Comedian (Chris Gethard)

  1. Pingback: Mind Muesli – Soul Food from Oprah’s Super Soul Conversations – Fully Booked Club

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