Hi, I’m Alex

Even though I’ve never been a personal bio guy, sharing others’ stories without sharing my own isn’t completely fair, so here’s the long and the short of it.

When I was young

I built Lego and wanted to be an Astronaut. My pre-primary teachers put me up a year because I caught a ‘Class Clown’ fever.

Guess which one became the class clown

Guess which one became the class clown

Guess which one became the class clown

Guess which one became the class clown

The Face of a Future Class Clown

The Face of a Future Class Clown

Before the age of twelve

My Lego house had fallen down, the jokes stopped rolling, and I was squarely back on Earth after my parents divorced, I lost my Dad to cancer, someone very close to me took their own life, and I had to fight a life-threatening disease called ITP.

What remained were many questions and few answers

You might resonate with the experience of having no control over an event(s) that drastically alters the trajectory of your life. It happens to all of us at some stage. These moments force you to look inside at only what you can ‘control.’

For me, self-discovery was and is that singular lever — an escape route from the mayhem.

After my lego house tumbled, I threw myself into sport and academics, culminating in achievements some people would find impressive—like representing Australia in Water Polo at 17, being the Valedictorian of my University (Western Australia), and being the youngest in my graduating cohort at Goldman Sachs Investment Banking division at 20 years old.

Touring California with the Australian Water Polo Team in 2015 (me on the right)

Touring California with the Australian Water Polo Team in 2015 (me on the right)

When someone gave me a funny hat

When someone gave me a funny hat (video link)

The view from Goldman Sachs Investment Banking Training

The view from Goldman Sachs Investment Banking Training

When I look back at these years as a (slightly) less naive 26-year-old, the achievements themselves feel empty. What I’m most proud of is what I’ve discovered about myself on the journey towards my goals.

The Inner Game of Tennis so eloquently describes this joy of self-discovery:

The surfer waits for the big wave because he values the challenge it presents. He values the obstacles the wave puts between him and his goal of riding the wave to the beach. Why? Because it is those very obstacles, the size and churning power of the wave, which draw from the surfer his greatest effort. It is only against the big waves that he is required to use all his skill, all his courage and concentration to overcome; only then can he realize the true limits of his capacities. At that point he often attains his peak. In other words, the more challenging the obstacle he faces, the greater the opportunity for the surfer to discover and extend his true potential. The potential may have always been within him, but until it is manifested in action, it remains a secret hidden from himself. The obstacles are a very necessary ingredient to this process of self-discovery. Note that the surfer in this example is not out to prove himself; he is not out to show himself or the world how great he is, but is simply involved in the exploration of his latent capacities. He directly and intimately experiences his own resources and thereby increases his self-knowledge.

Winning is overcoming obstacles to reach a goal, but the value in winning is only as great as the value of the goal reached. Reaching the goal itself may not be as valuable as the experience that can come in making a supreme effort to overcome the obstacles involved. The process can be more rewarding than the victory itself.

Faster Than Normal’s mission is to be a friend to the ambitious, a mentor to the becoming, and a partner to the bold on this wonderful wave we call life.

We achieve this by studying the stories, ideas, and frameworks of the world's most prolific people and companies—and how you can apply them to build businesses, wealth, and the most important asset of all: yourself.

The types of folks that read Faster Than Normal are:

The Ambitious

The hungry but unproven, in search of inspiration and guideposts to their goals

The Becoming

Those on accelerated trajectories in their respective fields, looking for a high-performance edge

The Bold

Those well on the path to building their legacy, looking for creative and tactical inspiration

This includes Fortune 500 executives, start-up founders, operators, professional athletes and creatives, and investors from Silicon Valley to Wall Street.

We hope everything we create will inspire you to conquer yourself and whatever mountain you’re climbing.

If that resonates with you, you’re in the right place, and I’m glad you’ve joined us on the journey.

Strap in; the next few decades are going to be fun—and it’s Day One.

Alex Brogan

Founder of Faster Than Normal

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