David Sherry's information diet

Fabrizio Rinaldi - April 21, 2021

We're joined in this new tiny interview by the brilliant David Sherry, whom you might know from Jacuzzi Club or Death to Stock. He's one of our favorite people and we're inspired by his information diet and routines.

Remember to also check out past tiny interviews with our favorite thinkers, creators, writers, technologists — like Luca Dellanna, Julian Lehr, Nathan Baschez, and Andrea Bosoni.

It's a way to get a glimpse into their daily routines and information diets.

David Sherry

Who are you, and what do you do?

Hi, I’m David. I founded Death to Stock, I write Caffeine, and help organize Jacuzzi Club.

I also work 1-1 with Founders who want to clearly structure and take action on their own unique vision of success. You can see my personal site here.

How do you usually start your day?

While I feel like I’m someone who’s super flexible in thinking and adaptable, I have spent a few years dialing in my habits and I’m actually pretty rigid about my morning routine and schedule.

It looks pretty boring but it sets up a really nice foundation for just how I feel every day. I care most about my daily energy and how I feel from that perspective, so all of my testing and experimentation around health, fitness, and routines is about energy.

I wake up around 6:30-7:00. Then I meditate for 10-30+ min depending on what I’m feeling. I follow that with some type of breathing exercise, typically Wim Hof or similar. Then I do the Hot/Cold shower which means I get into a warm shower but turn it cold, sometimes playing with flipping it hot/cold/hot/cold repeatedly.

I don’t do breakfast, just coffee! I wish I was better at making coffee but I pretend that I know what I’m doing, and I absolutely love the smell of fresh ground beans...

What’s your information diet like?

To me, Twitter and Newsletters are where I grab links to read later, which then I save in Pocket. I’m constantly adding things to my Pocket account, and the subject matter varies widely.

One thing I do that maybe others do too (?) is binging certain subjects, or other people’s work. So if I find someone new, I’ll try and digest as much as I can while I’m excited and interested in it.

Before I read books I almost always listen to the author on podcasts — or read their blog or writing. Another thing that is super handy is the “audio-blog” reading feature within Pocket that lets you listen to articles instead of reading them.

I have a special place in my heart for certain writers. There are too many to count but some good names who I really appreciate are Ben Hunt from Epsilon Theory, Alex Danco, Bob Lefsetz. Bob and Ben are more personal than most which I appreciate.

I feel like there are so many thought leaders who are great at sharing useful insights, but you don’t really connect with them personally. For example, Bob is so human and real in his writing, you learn a ton but also appreciate his letters because of them feeling like you’re really engaging with someone else.

How do you consume social media without getting addicted?

One way I use Twitter that others might not, is that I use Tweet Deck — which means I don’t have any “feeds”. I try and only use Twitter with Lists, or I simply search for people.

So when I use Twitter I actually have to remember the people I want to read, sort of like going directly to someone’s website. I search their name, go to their feed and just read that rather than reading a random feed of so many different ideas.

I like to do this to “check takes” when something is happening, I’ll surf directly to 5-10 profiles to see what people are saying about the subject.

With so many distractions, how do you stay focused and productive?

The best way I know how to be productive is to fast:

  • No twitter until 5pm (when possible I try and hit this)
  • No food (fasting) until 10-12 every day.
  • Little to no email before important things are done (usually around lunch as well when possible).

Generally, if you fast you have space, you’re bored — you want to do something instead of just sitting there.

When you can’t eat, you can’t check social media, and you can’t react to email… well you might as well do that work that is there.

So these routines all sort of compound: they’re about being proactive seeking out your own juice/energy/fun and engagement instead of feeding off of others and the algorithms.

I learn a lot through the Twitter hive mind, it’s where I find links to read and podcasts to listen to. So I fast during the day to work on what’s important, and then binge at night — food, media, whatever I want.

Where do you do this usually? On your phone?

I’m almost exclusively mobile for any content other than Twitter. I find I don’t get distracted as much on my phone because I can’t have too many tabs open at once all on one screen like you can on your computer.

For Twitter instead, I ONLY use it on desktop. This keeps me from reading the feed directly and just scrolling. That said I think this puts me at somewhat of a disadvantage in certain types of engagements with people that feel more spontaneous.

I’m thinking about getting an iPad though which could change this relationship.

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