podcast polymaths

Why becoming a polymath is for everyone

August 20, 2017

The very first episode of our new podcast is now live on iTunes or wherever you happen to get your podcasts.

In this episode, I outline my argument in defense of polymathy and how it can help you to get ahead, generate new ideas and beat the rise of automation. I argue that far from being confined to the geniuses in our society, anyone can become a polymath by focusing on getting good, rather than great, at a wide variety of skills.

There are three main arguments that I suggest as to why someone might want to become a polymath.

  1. Improving your ability to learn new skills is very important in
  2. Longer lifespans mean that the concept of a single discipline in a lifetime is dead. A polymathic approach to life gives you a unique combination of skills that will make you world-class in that niche even if you’re not in the individual fields.
  3. Taking an idea from one field and applying it to another is a great way to develop disruptive new ideas that could transform your industry. When fields become more specialized it is harder for communication between disciplines so polymaths perform an important role of translating ideas between sectors.

Specialization is for insects. ― Robert A. Heinlein

Resources Mentioned:

  • The Last Man who knew everything – Andrew Robinson (book)
  • Ray Kurzweil
  • Integrating Problem Solvers from Analogous Markets in New Product Ideation (Study)
  • The Tim Ferriss Show (podcast)
  • Choose Yourself – James Altucher (book)

Further Reading:

  • The Medici Effect
    • Explores how intersections between fields yield the most innovative and transformative ideas. This kind of innovation leads to revolutionary improvements rather than incremental evolutionary changes.


By subscribing to the podcast on iTunes or your podcasting app of choice you’ll be first in-line to listen to new episodes of the show featuring world-class performers from many industries as well as experts on accelerated learning and living as a polymath.

Polymath Show

We explore how to become a polymath in the modern age, using experimentation, accelerated learning and smart tools to get good at everything. Join us to in our mission to embrace generalization and generate more innovative ideas.


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