Rob Greenfield – Inspiring Others to Live a Low Impact, Sustainable Lifestyle


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Rob’s Wild Idea: To live a sustainable, minimalist lifestyle and inspire others to do the same. To do awesome adventures and spread the message of good in the world.

Rob Greenfield is an adventurer and environmental activist who is making a difference for our planet. An Eagle Scout who grew up in a small town of Wisconsin, Rob’s had and executed a ton of wild ideas. He cycled across the U.S.A. three times on a bamboo bike (without a ton of cycling experience and only drinking from natural sources while creating zero waste) to raise awareness about sustainability. He dove into more than 2,000 dumpsters across the country to raise awareness about food waste (and to show we throw away perfect food). He travelled to different countries with just the clothes on his back and zero money just to show that people are inherently good. He lived in a tiny house. And, for one of my personal favorite projects, Rob lived like the average American and wore all the trash he created for a month in New York City, to raise awareness about food waste.

Rob’s written a book (and it’s endorsed by Jerry of Ben & Jerry’s ice cream), given multiple TED Talks, and is a fascinating guy who wants to make a positive impact on our planet and the lives we lead.

Listen to this Episode if

  • You are interested in living with less stuff and needing less money to be happy.
  • You want to hear how someone lives on only $5,000 a year.
  • You want to live a low impact life or are interested in minimalism.
  • You want to know what he finds in dumpsters.
  • You think people are inherently good.
  • You love to travel.

Key Takeaways

  • 5:35 – Why Rob decided to bike across the country the first time.
  • 7:40 – Where he got his bamboo bike.
  • 8:30 – Rob learned that money doesn’t equal happiness.
  • 9:30 – His travels with zero money and no belongings to foreign countries.
  • 12:45 – What Rob learned about people from his adventures.
  • 14:00 – Why you have to be able to rely on others and ask for help.
  • 15:30 – What you learn as an Eagle Scout.
  • 16:20 – Why Rob started dumpster diving and what he has found.
  • 19:30 – What is food insecurity.
  • 20:45 – How Rob gets out of his comfort zone.
  • 22:00 – He hasn’t gotten in trouble dumpster diving, but he has a lot of privilege that makes it easier.
  • 24:10 – Rob donates 100% of the money he earns via media appearances to nonprofits.
  • 26:25 – Rob wore all the trash he created around New York City.
  • 29:20 – How Rob doesn’t worry about what people think of him.
  • 32:00 – How to adjust your own impact.
  • 34:30 – Rob is not a trust fund hippie kid.
  • 35:40 – Minimalism is a mindset.
  • 38:00 – An exercise to practice disconnecting.
  • 39:00 – How to give a good talk (Rob has experience from his TED Talk).
  • 41:10 – How to build up to achieving a big goal.
  • 46:00 – He wishes he hadn’t been so concerned with what people thought of him in his teen years.
  • 46:50 – Rob’s ideal party.
  • 47:55 – What Rob’s girlfriend thinks of all these adventures and experiments.

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