• Brad Stulberg

Introducing The Growth Equation


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Health and wellness is a 4.2 trillion dollar industry. Throw performance in there and we’re probably talking over 6 trillion dollars, or half the entire GDP of China. And yet, as individuals and communities we are struggling to be well and sustain peak performance without burning out. The problem is simple: so much of what the health, wellness, and performance industry is selling us doesn’t work. If it did, it wouldn’t be a trillion dollar industry. Regardless of what the marketers or self-improvement bros want you to think, wellness is not a lotion, potion, or pill; you can’t “hack” your way to peak performance. At the The Growth Equation, our goal is to be a signal amidst so much noise. We are dedicated to bringing you practical, no-nonsense information, tools, and practices to help you cultivate performance and wellbeing. We know there is demand for this. Our over 14,000 newsletter subscribers tell us as much every Thursday. The 170,000 books we’ve sold in the last two years, translated into 15 languages, say the same. Our logo involves a mountain and trees because we think it’s a wonderful metaphor for performance and wellbeing:

  1. You need to cultivate a strong base: physical health; mental health; and community.

  2. You need the right tools for the climb: Drive and passion; toughness; purpose and core values; resilience; productive stress; rest and recovery; and self-awareness.

  3. You need to work to sustain a prominent peak: flow; self-compassion; routine; and high-performance habits.

Like any strong mountain (or any good climber) you can’t reach the peak without the climb, and you can’t climb well without a strong base. You’ve got to be working on all of these dimensions in an integrated way, or else when rough weather comes the whole thing topples. 

And what about the trees? There is hardly anything on the very top of a mountain. All the life exists on the sides, on the journey. The same is true when it comes to striving for performance and wellbeing. It’s about the process and path as much as it is about any destination.

We’ll get back to our regular newsletter format next week (two brief articles on performance and wellbeing + interesting links from around the web). But for now, we’re excited to be launching our new platform, where we’re finally organizing our hundreds of essays, articles, and blog posts. Here are some of the most popular ones we’ve written over the past few years. We regularly revisit these concepts ourselves and learn something new every time. We encourage you to do the same, and check out our new platform while you’re here. 

  1. Wellness that actually works.

  2. How exercise shapes you, far beyond the gym.

  3. Being consistently good enough beats being occasionally great.

  4. An *evidence-based* guide to health and longevity.

  5. 4 daily habits of peak performers.

  6. What separates ‘super champions’ from ‘almost champions’?

  7. 6 principles to crush at whatever it is you do without burning out.

  8. The “dark horse” path to happiness and fulfillment.

  9. The people with whom you surround yourself shape you.

  10. How to develop mental toughness.

  11. A trek into the weird world of bro-science, fad diets.

  12. Research: sit close to a high performer and yours goes up by 15 percent. Sit close to a low performer and it goes down by 30.

  13. The problem with “hack” culture.

  14. A new way to think about burnout.

Whether you’ve been a long-time reader of our work or if this is your first time diving in, please help us spread our message by forwarding this to whomever in your life you think would be interested—be it friends, family, or colleague—and recommending they subscribe to our weekly newsletter

We’ve found that working toward and applying the principles that we write about is *so* much easier when you’ve got other people walking the path by your side. We want to grow this community digitally but we want you to have in-real-life support too. We’ve heard from many sports teams, schools, organizations, and even families that this newsletter has become required reading and weekly discussions ensue. That’s the stuff we love to hear. 

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Brad Stulberg   |   bradstulberg.com   |  bradstul@gmail.com