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Experts on Expert with Dax Shepard
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Experts on Expert with Dax Shepard

Author: Armchair Umbrella

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Hi, Dax Shepard here. I’m fascinated by smart people with a unique point of view. On this show, I leverage people’s vague awareness of me as an actor to talk with a bunch of bona fide experts. It’s a soothing mix of brain candy and defensive humor (my response to feeling intellectually outclassed). Join me on a layman’s journey through the Land of Specialists!
70 Episodes
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Jud Brewer

Jud Brewer

2020-07-0902:08:38

Jud Brewer is an American psychiatrist, neuroscientist and author. He studies the neural mechanisms of mindfulness using fMRI technology and has used his findings to treat addictions. Jud chats with the Armchair Expert about contentment vs. excitement, how meditation dissolves the sense of self and the biological reasons humans have cravings. Dax talks about how food scientists flavor foods to lose their taste and Jud gives Dax and Monica a test on openness. The two talk about the neurological reasons we behave the way we do and Monica reveals a big update in the fact check.
Jennifer Eberhardt

Jennifer Eberhardt

2020-07-0301:21:111

BONUS EPISODE with Jennifer Eberhardt (social psychologist who is currently a professor in the Department of Psychology at Stanford University) is the first in a monthly series on dissecting the Black experience in America. Jennifer chats with the Armchair Expert about her work in police reform, her personal experiences with racism and the biological impact of cultural biases. Dax asks if there are any model police departments and Jennifer shares a story of when she got arrested. She talks about having “the talk” with her sons and she shares the details of many psychological experiments she did on race and discrimination.
Nina Vasan

Nina Vasan

2020-07-0201:47:52

Nina Vasan is a professor at Stanford University and the Founder and Executive Director of Brainstorm: The Stanford Lab for Mental Health Innovation. She is the Chief Medical Officer of Real, a new women's mental health company and a psychiatrist at Silicon Valley Executive Psychiatry, a boutique concierge clinical for executives, entrepreneurs, and elite performers. Nina chats with the Armchair Expert about her personal experience with anxiety/depression, the continued prevalence of stigma and the loop of actions, thoughts and emotions. Dax asks about the concern of treating addiction with psychiatric drugs and Nina discusses how technology can aid in this problem. They talk about mental health as a three-pronged bio, psycho and social endeavor and they discuss the tenets of cognitive-behavioral therapy.
Jeffrey Sachs

Jeffrey Sachs

2020-06-2501:54:19

Jeff Sachs an American economist, academic, public policy analyst and former director of The Earth Institute at Columbia University, where he holds the title of University Professor. He is known as one of the world's leading experts on economic development and the fight against poverty. Jeff chats with the Armchair Expert about his career in international economics, what he’s learned from advising other countries and his propensity to model Scandinavia’s middle way economic model. Dax asks about communism in theory vs. in practice and Jeff implores us to take care of one another. The two talk about how the history of WWI has led to today and Jeff describes ways in which we couldn’t have a more balanced economy.
Vivek Murthy

Vivek Murthy

2020-06-1802:02:193

Vivek Murthy is an American physician and former vice admiral in the Public Health Service Commissioned Corps who served as the 19th Surgeon General of the United States. Vivek chats with the armchair expert about the health implications of loneliness, how his childhood as an outsider made him more compassionate and why he became interested in public policy. Dax wonders about the dilemma between liberty and equality on health legislation and Vivek talks about the biggest boat rescue in human history. He talks about what he learned from a patient who won the lottery and the lessons he’s taken from patients on their deathbeds.
Ibram X. Kendi

Ibram X. Kendi

2020-06-1101:28:521

Ibram X. Kendi is an American author and historian who teaches at American University. From July 2020, Kendi will join Boston University to launch the BU Center for Antiracist Research. Ibram sits down with the Armchair Expert to discuss the definitions of racism vs. anti-racism, the importance of acknowledging moments of racism in your life and his own racist beliefs that he has worked on shedding. Dax wonders if it’s realistic to ask people to prioritize issues that don’t directly affect them and Ibram equates fighting racists ideas to fighting addictions. They talk about the police system, how to educate children and the unspoken element of gun deaths in America.
Heather McGhee

Heather McGhee

2020-06-0401:25:112

Heather McGhee is an American political commentator, political strategist, currently a distinguished senior fellow and former president of Demos, a non-profit progressive U.S. think tank. Heather sits down with the Armchair Expert to discuss race in America - her takeaway from going to a white school but living in a black neighborhood and her theory that racism comes at a cost to all races. Dax asks about the economic impact of systemic racism and Heather talks about her epiphany watching Black Panther. They talk about colorism, the history of police interfacing with the black community and the hope of change.
Jon Meacham

Jon Meacham

2020-05-2801:40:081

Jon Meacham is a Pulitzer prize winning author, reviewer, and presidential biographer. Jon chats with the Armchair Expert about this early fascination with politics, attending Ronald Reagan's inauguration as a young boy and the importance of delineating historical figures from saints. Jon states his position on confederate statues and Dax asks what factors distinguished his pulitzer prize winning book from the others. The two talk about how age has affected their career outlook and they debate the impact of Christianity in the modern world.
Laurie Santos

Laurie Santos

2020-05-2101:34:314

Dr. Laurie Santos is a cognitive scientist and Professor of Psychology at Yale University and host of The Happiness Lab podcast. Laurie chats with the armchair expert to discuss 5 ways to increase happiness during quarantine, the neuroscience behind deep breaths and why studying animals is better than studying humans. Dax connects Laurie's principals to the principals of AA and Laurie talks about the negative impact of academic grades. The two discuss the scientific effects of giving and the connection between anthropology and psychology.
Rajiv Shah

Rajiv Shah

2020-05-1401:54:242

Rajiv Shah is the President of the Rockefeller Foundation. He is a former American government official, physician and health economist who served as the 16th Administrator of the United States Agency for International Development from 2010–2015 under President Obama. He also held many leadership positions at the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. Raj chats with the Armchair Expert about the economics of the healthcare system, leading the U.S response to the Ebola outbreak in West Africa and the Rockefeller Foundation's commitment to expand Covid-19 testing. Dax asks what he learned from Bill and Melinda Gates and Raj talks about having to address the crisis in Haiti only 6 days into the job. They two talk about America's interest in expanding American values around the globe, vaccinations and the importance of agriculture in humanitarian efforts.
Dan Heath

Dan Heath

2020-05-0701:38:32

Dan Heath is an American bestselling author, speaker and fellow at Duke University's CASE center. Dan chats with the Armchair Expert about why certain ideas stick, the emotionality behind urban legends and the benefit of thinking upstream. Dax implores those to think about the financial benefits to upstream social reform and Dan explains that every system is designed for its outcome. The two talk about systemic preventions that have a lasting impact, getting caught in a bad plan loop and they commiserate about being older dads.
David Chang

David Chang

2020-04-3001:38:312

David Chang is an American restaurateur, author, television personality and founder of the Momofuku restaurant group. David chats with the Armchair Expert about growing up Korean American, his first time eating ramen in Japan and how he found his way into cooking. Dax talks about elitism in food and David discusses how depression led him to open Momofuku. The two talk about self-medicating, the responsibility to share one’s painful experiences and the importance of asking for help.
Glennon Doyle

Glennon Doyle

2020-04-2301:55:564

Glennon Doyle is an American author known for her #1 New York Times bestsellers Untamed and Love Warrior and bestseller Carry On, Warrior. Glennon chats with the Armchair Expert about her struggle with addiction, falling in love with a stranger and her realization about forgiveness. Glennon talks about overcoming societal memos and Dax questions if following your personal truth is a realistic goal. They discuss the responsibility of highly sensitive people and why control and love are inherently at odds.
Jessica Lahey

Jessica Lahey

2020-04-1601:37:402

Jessica Lahey is an American teacher and author. She writes the bi-weekly 'Parent-Teacher Conference' advice column for the New York Times, is a regular contributor to the Atlantic and wrote the book, The Gift of Failure. Jessica chats with the Armchair Expert about the importance of childhood autonomy, the level of parental involvement to maximize childhood growth, and the profundity of the word 'yet' when engaging with children. Dax asks about the concept of "desirable difficulties" and Jessica explains why the internet hasn't replaced the need for learning facts. The two discuss loving your children for who they are; not who you want them to be, how to commit information to long term memory and allowing kids to have ownership of their knowledge.
Andrew Marantz

Andrew Marantz

2020-04-0901:43:37

Andrew Marantz is a journalist, staff writer for The New Yorker magazine and author of Antisocial: Online Extremists, Techno-Utopians and the Hijacking of the American Conversation. Andrew sits down with the Armchair Expert (pre social distancing) to discuss working as a journalist and specifically his time researching internet trolls and the direct ways in which they impact society. He talks about his experience getting to know many white nationalists and the revelation they aren’t always people you would expect. Dax wonders if there is an effective way to attack hateful ideologies without forgoing free speech and Andrew encourages social media companies to implement more foresight.
Stephen Dubner

Stephen Dubner

2020-04-0202:10:223

Stephen Dubner is an author, journalist, and podcast/radio host. He is co-author of the Freakonomics book series and host of Freakonomics Radio. Stephen sits down with the Armchair Expert to discuss being drawn to counterintuitive thinking, his journey to Judaism and looking at politics through an objective lens. Dax asks about Stephen’s childhood and Stephen talks about popular Freakonomics pieces. The two weave in and out of many topics including the prevalence of artificial insemination in turkeys, the uptick in pedestrian deaths and the potential of eating humans.
Lydia Denworth

Lydia Denworth

2020-03-2601:47:301

Lydia Denworth is a science journalist and author. She is the contributing editor for Scientific American and writes for Psychology Today. Her work has also appeared in The Atlantic, Newsweek, The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, and Time. Lydia sits down with the Armchair Expert to talk about the biology of friendship, the science of social bonding and the evidence that we are social animals. Dax asks for suggestions to aid social development for kids who struggle to make friendships and Lydia details how friendship impacts mortality and longevity. They also touch on Lydia's work in the Deaf community, quality vs. quantity in friendships and Lydia explains why Monica is Exhibit A in the necessity of friendship.
Tom Silver

Tom Silver

2020-03-1901:50:02

Tom Silver is a Hypnotherapist with over 35 years of experience developing powerful, proven therapeutic hypnosis methods. Tom sits down with the Armchair Expert to discuss his relationship with sobriety, how he stumbled into hypnosis and the depth of the subconscious mind. Dax asks about the distinction between a hypnotist and a hypnotherapist and Tom talks about his experience hypnotizing Guillermo on the Jimmy Kimmel Show. In the second half of the episode, Tom hypnotizes Miniature Mouse. He hooks her up to an EEG and they note the difference in her brain waves in and out of hypnosis. Dax and Monica have another long distance fact check in which they dissect the experience.
Adam Mosseri

Adam Mosseri

2020-03-1201:55:44

Adam Mosseri is the current CEO of Instagram. Adam sits down in the attic to talk about how he landed a job at Facebook, the responsibility of social media and the rise of the individual. Dax wonders if Mark Zuckerberg likes McDonalds and Adam talks through the reasoning behind the hiding likes trial. The two discuss how Facebook got intertwined with Cambridge Analytica, designing platforms to have a certain energy and Dax thinks men's preferences boil down to circles.
BJ Fogg

BJ Fogg

2020-03-0501:45:19

BJ Fogg is an author and social science research associate at Stanford. BJ sits down with the Armchair Expert to discuss his approach to changing behavior, growing up in the Mormon faith and his new book Tiny Habits. Dax commends BJ's approach of habit building by stating "after I blank, I will blank" and BJ talks about overcoming a childhood condition. The two discuss the behavior grid, lowering the bar on aspiration and technology in regards to behavior.
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Comments (29)

Melissa North

Give me a fu*king break. Even remotely implying that at 80k/yr tuition at Stanford is affordable because kids whose parents make under 60k/yr go free? PLEASE. If a kids parents make 160k/yr, they bring home MAYBE 120k net per year, no way in fu*k hell can that parent afford 80k/yr. That kid will be graduating with devastating amount of debt. As USUAL it's the middle class that get bent over and screwed hard.

Jun 9th
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Janice Baleson

One of my most favourite podcasts!!

Jun 8th
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Corey Goodall

Jim Jones had a lot of followers & people who believed in him. he.was.a.fucking.nut.

Apr 10th
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Patrick Walsh

OMG THE ABSOLUTE BEST EPISODE EVER!!!!!! BRING PEGGY BACK SOON!

Mar 3rd
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mark liebman

Found Ezra so annoying. Disrespectful to Sam Harris (who by the way owned him when they had a debate). Not even in the same class. Anyway love ya Dax

Feb 14th
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Mariah Fehlman

Dax, I just finished listening to this first podcast. I enjoyed it very much. I have to say that the best part was hearing that you have a "Papa Bob". My Father is also a "Papa Bob" Much love to all of the "Papa Bobs" out there!

Feb 3rd
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Ramon DeLuna

he was talking about Steve Austin the character for the Six million dollar man. not stone cold Steve Austin

Jan 23rd
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Shawna Michelle Heinz

you should have Zachary Levi on your show. Also Charlize Theron and Tea Leoni too!

Nov 22nd
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Shawna Michelle Heinz

I would love if you had Tea Leoni on your show.

Nov 22nd
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Shawna Michelle Heinz

I love you guys! Your banter is natural and funny. Speaking as an exhibitionist, I do like being spied on nude without knowing I'm being watched or I at least want the peeping tom to think I dont know he is watching me. I like to be lusted over and wanted and I dont mind nudity. Though it is true that I wouldn't want kids to see me or my family to see me, I love to flash. So I understand the person that is nude and has a trench coat on and flashes real quick by opening coat and closing coat. Even as a female, I dont like when men do that. I think that it should be women exhibitionist as the female body is much more aesthetically pleasing than the Male body. I especially believe that part of the reason while I think all women's breasts are beautiful because they produce "liquid gold" aka breast milk and are meant for feeding and nourishing. I believe that is why all people male and female whether straight or not, can agree that women's breasts are beautiful. My name is Shawna and I'm from northern cali and im a proud exhibitionist who enjoys voyeurism.

Nov 22nd
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Dawn Shields

what an amazing interview!

Nov 14th
Reply (1)

Kim Westrich

Recommended book to several friends. Depression iS an aweful way to live.

Oct 28th
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Aya

Monica and Dax really can draw these people out in a way that leads to great and relatable discussions that leave me feel like I munched on something mentally and emotionally satisfying.

Oct 13th
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Alaina Mava

love DOG!! - fact check, in Mexico it was Dog, Leland who is his son, and Tim who is his "brother" not 2 sons went to Mexico just 1. - love you Dax and DOG!

Sep 14th
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AVA JOHNSON

CONGRATULATIONS! VERY GOOD! I LOVE YOU!!

Aug 26th
Reply (1)

kevin taylor

Love the show but leave politics out

Jul 19th
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Tracie Sikorski

I listened to this one twice and told friends to listen too. This one is so good for everyone to listen and learn.

Apr 21st
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Tracie Sikorski

omg John sounds like Casey Kasem ! what a great speaker

Apr 17th
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Jane Evangeline Antonia Feast

Sanjay was not referring bro Stone Cold Steve Austin. He was talking about The Six Million Dollar Man. 1970s TV show.

Apr 11th
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Archana Singh

I learn so much from this podcast. That its priceless to me. Can't express enough gratitude.

Apr 9th
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