Back to Work

Back to Work

Back to Work is an award winning talk show with Merlin Mann and Dan Benjamin discussing productivity, communication, work, barriers, constraints, tools, and more.

Hosted by Merlin Mann and Dan Benjamin.


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#154: Not My Circus, Not My Monkeys

January 14, 2014 at 4:00PM • 1 hour 23 minutes

TOPIC: The Attention Stack

This week, Dan and Merlin talk about—what?—maybe the attention stack. How what we pay attention to (and, yes spend our time on) can't help but affect how we see, think, feel, and decide.

Not happy with any of those things? Start working your way down the stack.


#153: Anxiety's a Goat

January 7, 2014 at 3:45PM • 1 hour 15 minutes

TOPIC: The thoughts we think. And think. And think.

This week, Dan and Merlin talk about anxiety, compulsive thoughts, and how to at least crack an air hole in a big problem.

Way of the future.


#152: Tiny Hands, Large Desires

December 31, 2013 at 12:00PM • 1 hour 15 minutes

TOPIC: Consistency, Change, and Counting-Down

This week, Dan and Merlin return to the evergreen topic of new year's resolutions. Remember: in the main, you are what you've already done a lot.


#151: The Christmas Pants

December 24, 2013 at 12:00PM • 1 hour 7 minutes

TOPIC: Christmas and Control

This week, Dan and Merlin meander through holiday matters, including the Winter Warlock-like impotence of having your electric meter blow up on Christmas Eve Eve.


#150: Ask for John Klumpp

December 17, 2013 at 4:00PM • 1 hour 27 minutes

TOPIC: Enough.

This week, Dan and Merlin meander around the meaning of, "enough," pondering the deep existential pit we dig for ourselves and maybe how to get out of it.

Merry Christmas. Get your head out of your ass.


#149: Vixen Haler

December 10, 2013 at 4:00PM • 1 hour 19 minutes

TOPIC: Criticism and Its Discontents

This week, Dan and Merlin talk about criticism, people who don't like you, and how much to let each have anything to do with the work you produce.


#148: Activity Seat

December 3, 2013 at 5:00PM • 1 hour 1 minute

TOPIC: Gooseneck Options

This week, with Dan re-sick and Merlin full of beans, the boys do a deep dive on hand washing, purpose-built bathroom activity gadgets, and the benefits of arming our children.


#147: Five-Dollar Murray

November 26, 2013 at 4:00PM • 1 hour 20 minutes

TOPIC: Perfectionism and Procrastination

This week, Dan and Merlin talk about why the classic meanings of perfectionism mostly miss the mark; it's less about being scared to finish and more about being terrified to start.


#146: Phantom Bell Syndrome

November 19, 2013 at 4:00PM • 1 hour 35 minutes

TOPIC: Going Mobile-er.

This week, Dan and Merlin are very sick, so they talk about being sick. Then, they talk about what it would take to move to using just an iPad Air on the road.


#145: Nine-Thousand Words of Holden Caulfield

November 12, 2013 at 5:00PM • 55 minutes

TOPIC: Grab bag

This week, Dan takes a minute to sit down with Merlin to talk about bathroom GIFs, Marvel movies, private school ejection, and a new interview with Merlin that is very very long.