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Episode 120


Finance & Philosophy

Show Notes

10/08/2019 | 53 Minutes

Ryan Barclay – a financial consultant and corporate trainer who’s not afraid to ask the simple questions everyone else avoids to arrive at complex answers. He’s driven by an overwhelming thirst for knowledge, and with a little comedy, distills the complex into simple terms even c-suite executives can understand. Be advised, Ryan has misophonia, so avoid chewing your popcorn too loud when you’re sitting next to him at the movies. But you didn’t hear that from us. 


First declared major in college was Microbiology, with the end-game of becoming an oral surgeon. Why? money. When he got his wisdom teeth out, the surgeon only worked a few hours during the week and Ryan had to schedule his surgery around the doctor’s personal vacation time. 


But that didn’t pan out the moment Ryan asked to look inside a friend’s mouth who’d just had surgery. “Oh, you just had surgery, let me look inside your mouth.” 


So he turned to business and was drawn to the curious, marketable world of finance. Again, money. Now, as you read this, don’t think that Ryan is self-centered and money driven. He’s practical and smart, born from curiosity. 


After graduation, he followed a few college buddies to Goldman Sachs, and when he felt burned out he invested his employment in a small-shop local investment firm that got big. Ryan worked in client relations and asset management moving money around and making rich clients happy. But he wasn’t creating anything, he wasn’t, necessarily, making a difference in the lives of these clients. 


So one night at dinner, his wife asked him, “What do you really want to be doing?” Maybe this was the fist time in his life he really asked that question of himself. He wanted to take what he learned about finance, through the ups and downs of the marketplace, and teach other people. Help them become more effective in their role. 


As crazy as it sounds or as lucky as this guy can get, a few rounds of interviews referred him to his current gig, corporate trainer in the world of finance. 


  • Overall desire to help other people, he likes to explain things to people. 

  • A thirst for knowledge - he wants to know the what, the why, and the how. Looking at things with a skeptical eye to find the truth. The universal truth. 

  • Entertaining people, be it through humor, walking them through understanding, or combining the two.

  • The idea that some of the more interesting ticks that drive positive outcomes in his life are born of less-flattering traits like insecurity and anxiety. 

  • Striving to stay happy even when you have no control. 


  • Ryan has misophonia. Hatred of sounds. Or having a negative emotional reaction to sounds, particularly sounds that don’t necessarily belong. Chewing popcorn during movies, hearing other people in other hotel rooms. 

  • When other people are so inconsiderate that they’re disconnected from reality. 

  • People making their own truth, those who’ve decided that facts don’t matter. This idea of, “Whatever I want to be true is true.” And we stick to our own truths too frequently, refuting the other point of view. 



Episode transcript coming soon.

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