I’d never heard of Mike Cernovich until last fall. But he’d been around for awhile. His site (one among many, actually) has funny and insightful posts stretching back years. When I was going through a rough time recently, I went back and really dug deep into his work. You can learn a lot from the guy, and he’s done a lot of interesting things. I can honestly say that he’s motivated me a lot personally, and you can see the various testimonials on his site. Like anything else, you take what you can use and add it into your own life and experience. There is no one-size-fits all answer for living, but Mike definitely has a lot of knowledge to drop.

Tomorrow, his new book Gorilla Mindset is coming out on Kindle. The print and audiobook versions will follow within the next couple weeks. In anticipation of that, I wanted to do a short interview so we could discuss that, as well as a few other general questions. I hope everyone enjoys it! I’ll have a review of the book up soon here on the site.


Ralph: You’re about to put out a book, and you have years worth of high-quality posts on your various sites. What got you into writing? Was it your own discovery, or did someone point you in this direction?

Cernovich: I’ve always had a big mouth, even as a kid, and it’d get me into trouble. I would also get banned from various forums or warned by moderators to “change my tone.” I’d get these warnings even though my posts would get a lot of vote ups.

So I started my own sites where I can write whatever I wanted to. No one can censor me. It seemed to have worked out.

Ralph: Your work has helped me greatly in the past. So, I can only assume that lots of others have sent you cool stories about how you’ve changed their lives. What’s the one that has meant the most to you? Or if there isn’t just one, what is it about your writing that gives you the most satisfaction?

Cernovich: I’ve had a few write in to say they were suicidal before finding my work. That’s hard to top as far as a “I’m doing good things” sort of feeling.

Ralph: Looking at modern society, what is the most pressing problem we have right now, and how will it hinder us going into the future?

Cernovich: In the U.S. the biggest problem is globalization/outsourcing and the destruction of the middle class. Upward mobility is becoming a myth in the U.S. Student loan debt is also a major issue that may have implications similar to the mortgage meltdown of 2008/2009.

The rise of radical Islam is the greatest threat to global stability.

In a way, the most pressing problem is liberals! Think about it. I (and you and others) have been called a misogynist.

Compare my worldview with that of Islam. Islam is homophobic and misogynistic. Islam would laugh at my views for being soft.


Yet if I call out Islam, what’s that make me? A bad person!

Literally. If I called out Islam for being homophobic (gays are hanged in many Muslim countries), then I’m the bigot.

(I’ve just offended liberals and Muslims, which is probably bad for business. Told you I had a big mouth.)Mike-Cernovich-podcast

Ralph: Lots of people get discouraged by the haters. What’s the best way to handle negativity from outsiders, and even from friends and family? Should you use it as motivation, or just ignore it altogether?

Cernovich: At the end of the day, you have to ask yourself, “Who am I living for?”

Are you living for your family, society, teachers, preachers, and authority figures? Or are you living for yourself and those who actually love you and want what is best for you?

If you let haters get inside your head and prevent you from writing what you want to write, then who are you living for? That is not a rhetorical question. You are living for the haters!

In real life most don’t deal with the type of hate we experience online, but we constantly have people telling us what we do is weird, stupid, wrong, or whatever.

When in doubt, ask who you are living for. Are you going to live the life you dream of or are you going to live the life haters and toxic people want you to live?

Ralph: What was the hardest thing about getting Gorilla Mindset completed, and do you have any advice for aspiring authors?

Cernovich: At Danger & Play I write whatever I want to write. It’s sort of random, which is why it attracts a diverse audience. But a book must be topical. Every concept must tie together and be based around a single theme. It’s hard to overstate how challenging writing Gorilla Mindset was. I had to use the very same techniques in Gorilla Mindset to keep from freaking out.

My advice to authors is the same boring advice everyone gives. Write every day. Eventually everything will come together.


Ralph: Explain Gorilla Mindset a little for those who don’t already know what it is. How can the knowledge contained within benefit those who are willing to put it into practice?

Cernovich: Gorilla Mindset is a book about how to control your thoughts and emotions. It starts from the proposition that how you feel and what you think are choices you make in the present moment.

If you wake up on the wrong side of the bed, you can passively accept your mood, or you can change it. That’s a choice.

Most of us simply do not choose to accept personal responsibility for our thoughts and emotions. If we feel angry, we are mean to people. If we feel happy, we have a good time.

No one ever taught us how to change our emotions or thinking patterns. Hence why we passively accept thoughts and emotions we should actively reject.

Gorilla Mindset is an entire framework for taking control of your thoughts and emotions. There’s a chapter on self-talk, which is important. We tend to beat ourselves up inside of our heads by using negative speaking patterns. That must change.

There’s also a subject on how to change your mood and how to get into the present moment and be more mindful. Some health and fitness topics are covered as well, and even experienced guys will learn a tip or two.

The chapters of Gorilla Mindset talk about visualization, specifically how can you visualize the life you want to live.

Gorilla Mindset will thus give you control over what you think and how you feel, which is ultimately what leads to a life of health, wealth, and happiness.


As I said at the top, Gorilla Mindset comes out tomorrow. Check it out. I’ll put up my personal review very soon.

  1. I remember hearing a lot of jokes about Muslims around 9/11/01 and during the start of the second Iraq War in 2003. Why people aren’t nearly as free to joke about them now, I’m not entirely sure.

    On a side note, I first met Muslims when I went to high school, which was a couple of years after the start of the second Iraq War. None of the Muslim guys I knew could grow a beard, but I could. They started asking me what it was like being in al-Qaeda. I guess it was their way of getting back at me for asking them the same thing before I had a beard.

    1. Why people aren’t nearly as free to joke about them now, I’m not entirely sure.

      Part of it that hating all Muslims was as characteristic of the stereotypical Dubya fanboy as hating all Whites is as characteristic of the stereotypical SJW.

      Dubya ain’t too popular anymore.

  2. I’ve heard about this guy throughout twitter from other GG supporters (comments vary btw) but I’ve never really had time to look into his stuff. If this interview is any indication I’ll check out his site and get his book if it’s any good.

    About the interview: I hate to be one to admit this but there was a time that I was someone else’s tool. Like many I was young(er) and stupid (translation: ass retarded) and often found myself manipulated by others. They sounded like they had my best interests in mind but it was really them getting the most they could from me. When I wanted something, my god they weren’t anywhere to be found. I could’ve done more for myself but it was too late, I lost friends and stability along the way. Things only got bad for me on an emotional level later on until I realized something: only person responsible for me is me. No one screwed me, I screwed myself (insert joke here, please. I won’t mind.) If I fall I need to learn how to pick myself back up and continue walking.

    I could go on but to focus on why I’m staring this:
    “When in doubt, ask who you are living for. Are you going to live the life you dream of or are you going to live the life haters and toxic people want you to live?”
    Cernovich said it best right here in this interview. It is something more people need to reflect on in their own personal lives.

    1. Just like everyone else, I made (and sometimes continue to make) the same mistake. It takes vigilance. Sounds like you are on the right path.

      1. Thanks. It’s something that took me years to realize but I’m willing to work on this more and more.

    2. It was a little part fear and some wanting to belong somewhere. The “friends” I had knew how to exploit this. They wanted me to like what they liked, dress how they wanted me to dress, do what they wanted to do. In public they seemed like normal people, behind closed doors they were just as shady as the people they “warned” me of. They had more problems they never admitted to but I was the one always getting called out in the group.

      And looking on it now their behavior was similar to sjws. It’s scary to think I could’ve become one at one point but I’m thankful to be my own person. Right or wrong I defend my positions and if I can’t find a middle ground with someone then we will agree to disagree and go about our ways.

      The way I look at things now is part wait and see and also take risks if I am willing to risk a loss. It’s probably the greatest feeling to know that when things do work out for me they do so because I had some control in the matter.

      And thanks. I will listen to that last part you wrote.

  3. Honestly I don’t see anything really innovative and new that isn’t offered in a thousands of other self help books, and I’ve never been a fan of those so maybe I am biased. That aside he seems like a decent dude and he is right about everything he said about Islam.

    1. Which one is closest to Gorilla Mindset? I’ve never seen a book where there’s a complete working model of mindset along with step-by-step instructions. If you have, please let me know. I read a lot of self-help books, too, as there are always some useful insights in those books.

      1. I don’t know which one is closest since I have yet to read the Gorilla Mindset, like I have said, I’m not a fan of these kinds of books so I am probably biased and subjective instead of objective and constructive. The ones I would say are most similar that I can think of right now would be Mind over Mood, The New Psycho-Cybernetics (tho this one is not about changing everything but involves the same principles of programming yourself), and Your Erroneous Zones. All of them, including yours seem to derive from a place of dialectical behavior therapy. I’ve spent years in therapy, none of it had much effect, what did however was one day waking up tired of all the bullshit, I simply stopped seeing myself as a victim and started seeing myself as a survivor, a fighter, and stopping to follow other people steps and techniques, starting martial arts, accepting personal responsibility on the highest level and staying true to myself. The key was not in the techniques, or winning a battle against the world, rather winning a war against myself. I’m saying this so you know where my bias is coming from. That aside I am sure your book will be useful to many, this is just my individual experience where self help books, were just getting help by proxy, coddling you, trying to teach yo something that you actually need to find in yourself to be truly long term effective, to stop looking for help in the first place and start fighting and creating.In conclusion I’m not saying the points you are making in your book are wrong or flawed, I am not criticizing the book itself or it’s content, I’m saying that from my personal experience self help books in general and other peoples wisdom isn’t something you can base your life on, they are at best a band aid and from the presentation, I cannot really see how yours is different.

  4. The decision to override feelingsmis wise, but I don’t know about:

    Cernovich: At the end of the day, you have to ask yourself, “Who am I living for?”
    Are you living for your family, society, teachers, preachers, and authority figures? Or are you living for yourself and those who actually love you and want what is best for you?

    So your family hates you and doesn’t want what is best? So do Preachers? Figures whose authority you accept? Sounds SWJ crazy.
    Some who disagree do so because they desire the best – the solution is rational discussion, not dismissing those who might be wiser or have a kernel of wisdom.

    1. The vast majority of people in your family want the best for you, true (Preachers and authority figures are another matter, but I digress). The point is that most people have no idea what they’re doing with their lives, and even when they give advice with the best of intentions, it doesn’t make it right.

      Look at people around you and where they are in their life. If you like where they’re at, and you would like to be there yourself someday, you’ll probably do well to follow their advice. If on the other hand your family is either very unhappy, financially struggling, or a combination of the two, it’s likely that they’ll be giving you the same advice they followed that led them to that point.

      Discussion is fine, but at the end of the day you have to decide what’s best for you, and you’re the one who will have to deal with consequences of your actions. If you’re still making decisions in your late 20’s based on what other people around you think, you’re probably not going to go very far.

      1. Exactly. It’s not that your friends or family are evil. It’s that they know nothing while trying to run your life. It’s ignorance and conformity moreso than malice.

    2. So your family hates you and doesn’t want what is best? So do Preachers? Figures whose authority you accept? Sounds SWJ crazy.

      1. Sometimes yes, I’ve seen too much to think family, or preachers, or authorities want what’s best for you.

      2. Even if they want what’s best for you, that’s no guarantee that they know what’s best for you. Again, I’ve seen too much to think good intentions mean good results.

      3. Even if they do know what’s best for you, it’s a good idea to let you do what you think, because they’re not going to be there for you 100% of the time, so you need to learn how to make your own mistakes before you fly high enough that a mistake will send you plummeting into the ground.

      1. Most want you to do what is best for them. Even if they do want what is best for you, that is filtered through their own perceptions, conceptions, and biases. Which is why people give horrible advice!

        Gorilla Mindset doesn’t tell anyone how to live. I simply show how to deal with stress, anxiety, and how to figure out what you want out of life.

  5. Sounds like Tony Robbins repackaged for the millennial generation. Robbins said the same thing about choice and controlling your emotions. Basically, he’s selling nothing.

    1. Nope. Been to a Tony Robbins seminar and recommend his stuff. Gorilla Mindset is far more thoughtful and practical. It’s a step-by-step guide and complete paradigm where each chapter flows to next.

      That said, if Tony Robbins does great stuff and if you get value from it, great to hear.

      1. Be specific – what is the “complete paradigm” you’re offering to readers? What is its thesis? What advice are you giving to readers to help them control their thoughts and emotions? (Most of our thoughts are triggered by stimuli, which we don’t control.)

        It reminds me of Robbins and Ferriss. It promises the reader the world but it’s vague on the details. Like that Tim Ferriss talk, “How to Feel Like the Incredible Hulk,” where it’s a hour of nothing.

        1. “Be specific.” LOL at telling me what to do. Buy the book or don’t. There’s a sales page, table of contents, and preview available.

          You have a negative mindset and Gorilla Mindset is not the right book for you.

          1. I have a skeptical mindset. I’ll get the book through Kindle Unlimited and review it.

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