Hunt Like a Lion

An animal analogy to increase productivity

Jack Purdy
2 min readJan 16, 2024

Originally published at

Naval has this idea from an old Joe Rogan podcast that has radically altered my day-to-day work schedule.

Humans aren’t meant to graze like cattle, we’re meant to hunt like lions

Think about a day in the life of a cattle. They wake up, roam around, and chomp away at grass. That’s about it. There’s this one mode they operate in and it’s a constant, leisurely, pace of going about their “work”.

Now juxtapose that with a lion. When they “work” they locate their target, directing 110% of their focus and energy. The outside world fades away as they lock in. When it’s time to pounce, they expend every ounce of effort to chase down and kill their prey.

Once they do, they enjoy it. And then do absolutely nothing. They’re not thinking about their next hunt. They’re not preparing to go back out. They are straight lounging in the savannah without a care in the world.

How does this relate to us?

The typical day for a white-collar worker consists of showing up to your computer, be it in an office or your home, plugging in for the day and slowly chipping away for 8+ hours. This is reminiscent of cattle. There’s a continuous pace throughout the day as they graze about the corporate world.

This pace is what creates the mindless drone feeling where you make slow incremental gains on whatever it is you hope to accomplish. Day in and day out this is also what leads to burnout and diminishing motivation.

But if you were to work like a lion, what would that look like? With clear directives, you lock in on your target, ignoring any and all distractions. You then sit down and do all you can to make progress on it. During that time, you’re not chatting with coworkers, there’s no social media up, you’re not responding to Slack messages. You’re focused on the task at hand like you’re chasing down a fucking gazelle.

Once that 30 minute, hour, 2 hour sprint is done. You relish in your successful hunt. And then relax. You don’t feel the need to jump right to the next thing. You don’t catch up on other small tasks. You take a break — go for a walk, read a book. Do whatever you need to take your mind off work to recharge and then when you’re ready get back to it for your next hunt.

Originally published in A Life Examined newsletter. Subscribe for more musings on understanding and improving the human experience.



Jack Purdy

Writing A Life Examined newsletter | Director of Sales @Messari