Episode 67: The Back To School Episode

“I didn’t realize how much more of Rhodes Scholar I am than you, John” – Cory

“You’re not just paying to have fun for four years” – Cory

“The information you extract in college is your tool belt to use for the rest of your life and support your family” – John

“Success is a product of one thing, HABITS. Habits breed success.” – John

“I am tired of being compared to Plato everyday.” – John

“I can put my brain on that short term, ‘kill it, kill it, kill it, release. Then repeat.” – Cory

“I’m an accomplice to a poo assault!” – John

“I had the idea, I was going to take Jose Cuervo shots to stay awake and write this paper.” – Cory


  • Welcome Back/Cory and John are Scholarly: 00:30
  • The Appropriate Back To School Mindset: 5:30 
  • The Balance Between Work and Partying: 11:30
  • Set Up Your Back To School Habits For Success: 15:30
  • Organize Your Time: 21:00
  • John Is A Philosopher/Cory’s Taste in Music: 30:00
  • Mentally Resetting: 34:00
  • Fun Stories From The Brief College Experiences of Cory and John: 39:15
  • Closing Remarks: 53:30


Going back to school is a social event that has a sense of positive anxiety. It is a time to prepare your body and mind to be at its finest. It is typical for classes to fall down the priority totem pole toward that fourth or fifth spot behind things like athletics, football games, partying etc. You should think about how much you are spending on the education. You are making a massive investment in yourself so you should work to get the most out of it. Flip the priorities so you can get the best ROI. Make sure you extract as much information as possible. Don’t focus on happy hour during classes because if you can excel and succeed in the real world, ‘happy hour’ can be the rest of your life. In college you have the choice to acquire the skills necessary to make the rest of your life that happy hour. There are two ways to look at it. Either “College is supposed to be the time of your life, I’m going to live it up”. Or you can switch focus and recognize that if you find a balance between partying and school, where school is your top priority. The time you are putting in at school is to set up your future and you make sure you use every class and resource to extract as much information as possible. You are going to class anyways so you might as well pay attention and get the most out of it.

Be about your business Monday through Friday and then go ahead and have fun on the weekend. If you can hold yourself to that it will allow you to get far more out of the experience. People get tripped up because they begin drinking on a Tuesday or something and the next thing you know you’re sleeping through class and it turns into a four or five days per week drinking schedule. Then college becomes about partying and not bettering yourself. Make this your habit.

If you can develop habits that are like stone and they don’t budge, it will forge a much clearer path to success. What are your back to school habits? It doesn’t have to be getting up to train at 3:00 AM but it could be waking and exercising before your first class. By doing that simple task Monday through Friday, you are priming yourself to have a better and more successful day. A good way to help you stick to this is to find at least one person you can be competitive with in the gym so you know that if you go out and drink the night before, you are gonna get your ass kicked the next morning. Having that goal of beating your buddy the next morning will help keep you on track. Beyond the gym, you are going to be mentally impaired after a night of drinking so if you are in a debate or discussion in class you will not be as quick on your feet and you will likely embarrass yourself. Stop focusing on things that can decrease performance and begin focusing things that can increase performance.

Set your schedule and stick to it. There is incredible power in outlining your week and knowing when you are going to get your work done. Set the boundaries to where you will not be interrupted and you’ll be able to succeed. Frankly, most people really just are not that effective. During that time you have set aside, do not allow yourself to be distracted. If you can dial in and focus during the allotted time frame you will get more done in two hours than if you would kinda sorta do work while watching TV or bullshitting with your roommate for 8 hours. It is important to understand how you learn and take advantage of that. Some people may learn better in solitude with their notes while others need group interaction. It is important however when in groups that everyone stays on task and it doesn’t become a group of people just hanging out. Be creative with how you study and try to make it fun. Everyone has times when things just aren’t clicking, classes are hard and things keep getting in the way of you getting your work done. It is during these times that you have fall into your habits and rely on them to get you back on track. It is also import to take inventory of the habits that you have because they may not be as effective as you thought. Constantly re-evaluating your strategies is key to succeeding and breaking through rough patches. There is not just one way to do things. There are infinite ways to get to the destination. It does not really matter how you get there as long as you arrive.

If you can go all in on your work during the week, it takes the pressure off during the weekend and you feel like you can let go a little bit and relax. Your week becomes far more productive and you enter a much better mental space. It is also valuable to have events or mini vacations like the Max Effort partners are planning with he Austin City Limits Music Festival because when you go as hard as these guys do, all the time you need to reset a little. There is a freedom that comes with events like this. In an environment without pressure some of the best ideas are born. Even if the ideas do not come during the retreat, everyone can operate on a higher level after leaving because they have mentally reset. If you do not take off the pressure valve then you will combust.


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