21 Life Lessons I’ve Learned in 2021

Srinivas Rao
16 min readDec 14, 2021

Every person I’ve interviewed in the past 10 years has taught me invaluable lessons about what it means to live your life with intention, meaning, and purpose. But, knowledge only becomes wisdom when we reflect on what we’ve learned. I create a list of the most valuable lessons I’ve learned from podcasts guests every year because it forces me to reflect on everything I’ve learned — this is what I learned from podcast guests in 2021.

1. Mimetic Desire Influences Every Choice We Make

Most people aren’t fully responsible for choosing their own goals. People pursue the goals that are on offer to them in their system of desire. — Luke Burgis

Mimetic desire and external factors like parents, peers, media, and pop culture influence the clothes we wear, careers we pursue, goals we set, and partners we choose. When we are unaware of its impact on our decisions mimetic desire can wreak havoc on our lives. It can cause us to set goals that are not aligned with our values and sacrifice internal fulfillment for external validation.

Listen to our Interview Luke Burgis

2. Lower Your Ambition

The more okay you are with the life you have and with not being super achiever, the most freed up psychologically, you are to actually create amazingly impressive things, to really make a difference in some field, perhaps even to become a sort of, one of these sorts of stratospheric gods of the civilization. — Oliver Burkeman

Ambition is not a bad thing. No parent, teacher, coach, or boss discourages a child, student, athlete, or employee…

Srinivas Rao

Candidate Conversations with Insanely Interesting People: Listen to the @Unmistakable Creative podcast in iTunes http://apple.co/1GfkvkP