Dr. Jordan B. Peterson has taught me a hell of a lot.
It’s no bloody joke, seriously. He did.
My understanding of life, psychology, philosophy, politics, history, my past, my future, my faults, goal setting, religion, relationships, lobsters, language, and social justice warriors is radically different now than it was a few years ago, and that is all thanks to good ol’ Dr. Peterson.
But that’s actually just the tip of the iceberg. Peterson changed my life way beyond making me merely sound smarter in conversations. He helped me in a fundamental way to:
- Heal my PTSD
- Find my girlfriend
- Break up with my girlfriend
- See the value of marriage and kids
- Reconnect with the sacred
- Stop being such a pushover
- Clean my room (obviously)
- Read way better books
- Start Brazilian jiu-jitsu
- Integrate my “dark side”
- Find more meaning in life
- Increase my productivity
- Overcome depression and nihilism
- Start a daily journalling habit
- Lessen my death anxiety
- Inspire me to do more public speaking
- And a whole lot more…
The Observer says he’s “The closest that academia has to a rock star,” and the data backs this up.
He is most famous, however, for his YouTube channel, which boasts 1.4 million subscribers.
Jordan Peterson is a dazzling, electrifying, charismatic, and profound public speaker who has spent a lifetime thinking about the ideas he discusses.
So with that said, below I’ve compiled what I consider to be the top 50 greatest Jordan Peterson YouTube videos on the Internet.
If you’re new to the work of Peterson, this list will serve as the perfect introductory curriculum. Go through them in any order and just start with the titles that seem most appealing to you.
But even if you’re very acquainted with Jordan Peterson’s work, it doesn’t matter, there should still be quite a few uncovered gems in this compilation.
Are you ready to dive in and rescue your father from the underworld? Then strap in bucko, we’re about to get sorted.
The 50 Greatest Jordan Peterson YouTube Videos on the Internet
1. A Step-By-Step System for Changing the World (Roughly Speaking)
Jordan Peterson’s practical philosophy and action plan for changing the world begins by sorting yourself out first. The video is like the Jordan Peterson “sort yourself out” starter pack. It contains great book recommendations.
Note, this and many of his public talks and lectures are available on the Jordan Peterson podcast—definitely check that out if you’re more of a podcast person than a YouTube person.
2. Why Ancient Stories Can Help Modern People Reconnect With “The Sacred”
This lecture describes the way the world is portrayed in deep stories (as a place of action rather than things) and how this sacred, archetypal way of viewing the world can teach us to be wiser.
3. Try This Challenge to Become Who You Are
According to Peterson, when you are inauthentic or act in ways out of alignment with your values, there is an actual feeling of disintegration in your body. If you pay attention to this feeling, and stop doing things that make you feel weak, you will be a far more formidable force in the world.
4. Your Family is More Important Than Your Career
Jordan Peterson is in the 99th percentile for industriousness in the big five personality test. He is incredibly productive, prolific, and efficient in his field of work, but he still values his family more than anything:
Despite the fact that I’m absolutely fascinated by my job and my career and I’m in a fortunate position because it’s an extraordinarily interesting job, ever since I had kids they were the most important thing in my life, and as I get older that just becomes more and more and more clear.
5. The Most Viewed Jordan Peterson Interview on the Internet (11.5 Million Views)
This video, perhaps more than any other, introduced Jordan Peterson to the mainstream viewer. Cathy Newman, a Channel 4 interviewer, attempts to debate Peterson on the gender pay gap, campus protests, and postmodernism by trying to put words in his mouth. When Peterson makes a point, Newman has a habit of replying with “So you’re saying… [inserts something Peterson did not say].”
6. Jordan Peterson Interview Where He Breaks Down The Cathy Newman Debate
This is a splendid Jordan Peterson interview which contains Peterson’s first extended psychological breakdown of the Cathy Newman interview where he explains the role of her persona and shadow. After his breakdown, he goes on to discuss the five main ideas in his work, at length.
7. How to Deal with Unpredictable, Dangerous People
One of Peterson’s most important messages is “Tell the truth.” In this video, Peterson recalls a hilarious but insightful story where he had to deal with an extremely drunk ex-Hells Angel at 3AM who wanted to sell him a toaster.
8. The Best Relationship Advice You’ll Ever Hear
Jordan Peterson married his hometown sweetheart and had two children with her. He has also been a practicing clinical psychologist for over 25 years, and many of his clients were in a relationship. In this video, Peterson tells you exactly what to do when your partner does something you don’t want them to do… it’s so obvious, yet none of us do it!
9. When Dr. Peterson Met Navy SEAL Jocko Willink to Discuss Self-Ownership
Jocko Willink was a Navy SEAL commander in Task Force Bruiser. He fought in the battle of Ramadi, Iraq. Besides his military accolades he has written three books, Extreme Ownership, The Way of the Warrior Kid, and Discipline Equals Freedom. Willink says that he has come to many of the same realizations as Peterson, but through life experience rather than books.
10. How to Organize Your Life Properly
If you’re a creative person but have high levels of neuroticism (you are sensitive to negative emotions), Peterson explains that you need to increase your conscientiousness by using a calendar and organizing your time better.
11. The Psychology of the Flood (Biblical Lectures)
Even though Jordan Peterson is a well-respected teacher at the university of Toronto, when he shot to fame through YouTube he realized that he could teach more people with recorded videos than in a pure classroom setting. After starting a Patreon account he set a goal to rent out his own theatre and record a series of lectures on The Bible. They are absolutely incredible, and I would recommend listening to them all.
12. Jordan Peterson and Stefan Molyneux Discuss Addiction. Cultural Division, Ideology, Personal Responsibility, and Free Will
Stephen Molyneux is very smart dude with some interesting albeit polarizing views, a bit like Dr. Peterson. This is a wonderful back and forth, and I especially like the section on trauma and addiction.
13. Joe Rogan and Jordan Peterson Have the Most Epic Conversation About Existence, Mythology, Political Correctness, and Free Speech
“This has been my favorite podcast of all time.”
— Joe Rogan after talking with Jordan Peterson
There are quite a few Joe Rogan and Jordan Peterson YouTube videos in this list. Honestly, they are all super fascinating, unique, and profound. These are the interviews I listen to over and over. Typically in the realm of the democratic party, this may open your eyes on more than a few matters.
14. The World Is Made of Potential, Not “Things”
This TED talk will change how you perceive reality. Watch it.
15. How to Recognize and Heal Trauma
This is a section from the Stephen Molynuex and Jordan Peterson interview, but I think it deserves special mention here. Trauma is something that isn’t discussed anywhere near as much as it should be in personal development circles. Jordan Peterson also co-created Self Authoring, a program that helped me considerably in healing my trauma.
16. Sam Harris and Jordan Peterson Go to War Over the Definition of “Truth”
I am a huge Sam Harris fan (his podcast is probably my favorite), but he has some differing opinions to Jordan Peterson. In this Jordan Peterson interview, they both set out to have an open conversation about a variety of topics but they ended up getting stuck on how to define what truth is. In some ways, this is a difficult conversation to listen to, but if you want to see two intellectual juggernauts go to battle over a fundamental question, this is absolutely worth listening to.
17. Dominance Hierarchies Have Existed Before Trees
When you learn about dominance hierarchies, you will begin to see the world through a new lens. Jordan Peterson’s definition of what’s “real” is essentially something that has existed for the longest time. Because dominance hierarchies have been around since before trees, it’s fair to say they are real. He gets deep into identity politics, and where white men and young men fit into the equation.
18. What Goes On In Your Brain When The Unexpected Happens
Even though Peterson’s ideas are deep and complicated, the way he presents them is often beautifully simple. One of the simplest interpretations of reality Peterson uses is that our psychological world is made from chaos and order. In this video, Peterson elaborates to explain what happens in your mind when the unexpected occurs.
19. There Is No Human Life Without Value (Oxford Union Address)
Jordan Peterson seems his most impassioned when talking to young people who are full of potential and have the ability to change the world. If you fit this profile (or if you’re just a human), watch this in its entirety.
20. Mysticism, Spirit, and The Shadow
One of the things that most drew me to Jordan Peterson was his willingness to investigate the more mystical parts of existence and the psyche—unlike scientists like Richard Dawkins. This video is one of the finest I’ve seen of Peterson’s where he dives into the mystical aspects of being human.
21. That Time When Jordan Peterson Met a Serial Killer in Prison
When Jordan Peterson lectures, he doesn’t follow a script. He prefers to “think out loud” and often goes off in tangents and tells stories to illustrate his point. This is a great anecdote on psychopathy and how we are all more corrupt than we think.
22. The Major Problem with Atheism
Atheists like Sam Harris, Richard Dawkins, and Christopher Hitchens have extremely compelling arguments for atheism. Their views are incredibly hard to contend with. But even so, for myself and many of my friends, there is something “off” with the new atheist movement. Jordan Peterson is one of the only scientists I’ve seen who does a good job at elaborating on some of the issues with atheism.
23. There’s Nothing Uglier Than an Old Infant
“You get to pick your damn sacrifice. That’s all. You don’t get to not make one.”
Jordan Peterson is like an online father figure. Much of his advice comes back to the basics like “tell the truth,” “clean your room,” “grow up,” “take responsibility.” In this video, Peterson discusses the dangers of remaining immature.
24. If You Have Depression Don’t Sacrifice Your Stability
If you suffer from depression or even low moods, this is required viewing. There are many simple factors within your control that you may not be aware of.
25. Controversial Facts About IQ Nobody Likes to Admit
In recent years, there have been many authors bashing on IQ, instead preferring to say that “emotional intelligence” or “multiple intelligences” are more important. Peterson explains in the video why IQ is still one of the best measuring tools we have to predict success.
26. Joe Rogan and Jordan Peterson #2: F**king Amazing Discussion of Evolution, Mythology, and the Chaotic Present
The title for this one says it all.
27. Stop Wasting Time and Opportunities!
This is possibly the most inspiring Jordan Peterson video in the list. If you stopped putting off doing the things you know you should be doing, what would you be like in 10 years? Truly ask yourself that.
28. Lewis Howes and Jordan Peterson On What You Do When Things Get Overwhelming
This is part 2 of a longer interview where Peterson goes into the chapter of his book “Pet a cat when you encounter one on the street.” Peterson’s daughter had a very serious autoimmune disease which affected over forty joints and gave her severe depression. These problems started when she was two. Peterson explains how he was able to handle this catastrophe without it pulling him into the depths of hell.
29. Jordan Peterson and Maajid Nawaz Discuss Suicide, The Crisis of Masculinity, Culture War, Gender Pronouns, Society, and Oppression
Maajid Nawaz is an ex-Islamic extremist, but now he is reformed and a prominent speaker on political issues. Much of Peterson’s most popular teachings come under the realm of self-improvement, but this one provides a great discussion that focuses on politics and society.
30. Why You Need a Daily Routine
I have always struggled to self-maintain a good, consistent routine, partly because I didn’t see enough value in overcoming my natural tendency to choose flexibility over structure. That was until I watched this clip. Now I use Google Calendar every day.
31. Develop Your Dark Side
Inside each of us, we have the capacity for both good and evil. But unless you truly develop and understand your dark side, you may be at its mercy. By accepting it and integrating it, we gain mastery over the unruly yet powerful parts of ourselves and become a better force for good in the world.
32. Watch Your Fantasies
The Buddha taught that we should be mindful of our thoughts and emotions. Jordan Peterson has a similar idea related to psychoanalytic theory. If you watch your fantasies, you’ll find little sub-personalities loaded with a core of emotion which you can investigate and follow into diverging paths. When you watch your fantasies, you’ll be able to “know thyself.”
33. Jordan Peterson and Joe Rogan ROUND THREE: Another F**king Amazing Conversation
In this third conversation between Joe Rogan and Jordan Peterson, they are far more familiar with each other. Joe also challenges many of the points he disagrees with Peterson on which forces Peterson to explain himself better.
34. How to Listen
How much better would the social world be if we listened to each other? Not just hear each other talk, or read each other’s comments, but actually listen. Peterson explains how we might do that in this video.
35. Creativity Is Rare, and Isn’t Always Good
When I was an art student, all I wanted to do was figure out how I might make a living from my passion. This was the goal I had. As I got older, however, I realized that the best thing I could do was split my financial acquisition from my passion. If you have any creative aspirations, you will get a ton of value from this relatively short video.
36. Jordan Peterson’s Breakdown the Scientific Literature on Psychedelic Experiences
If you are a fan of HighExistence, psychedelics being used as healing tools should not be a new concept for you. Hearing Jordan Peterson breakdown the psychological literature on psychedelics in a lecture about The Bible, however, is simply mind-blowing.
37. Can Men and Women Work Together In the Workplace?
This is quite an awkward interview and Jordan Peterson doesn’t come across the best according to many people. But it’s controversial and Peterson raises some important questions that most people are too afraid to ask, especially while being filmed.
38. The Interpretation of Dreams
I thought psychoanalysis and dream interpretation was pretty stupid before I encountered Jordan Peterson. Since then I’ve taken an interest in books like The Denial of Death, and have even done some dream interpretation through journalling. I found the experience very healing and recommend you watch this video and give it a try yourself.
39. Jordan Peterson Explains How You Can Find Meaning and Purpose In Life
This is just a classic talk by Peterson on living a meaningful life. Every time you’re feeling a little aimless, give this a watch. After being covered by outlets like Fox News, the Toronto Star, and York Times for sharing his thoughts about enforced monogamy — videos like this should be making the rounds.
40. Why You Have to Fight With Your Partner
If you think fighting with your partner is bad for your relationship, think again. In fact, a little bit of fighting will stop things from getting too predictable. However, there is a line where too many negative interactions compared to positive interactions will negatively impact the relationship.
41. An Addiction Has It’s Own Personality
Have you ever been addicted to something? Drugs? Alcohol? Food? Nicotine? Pornography? If so, you’ll know just how difficult it is to give up. In this video, Peterson explains how addictions work in your brain, thus giving you some guidance on how you might give them up.
42. A Great Wide-Ranging Conversation Led by Fantastic Interviewer John Anderson
This doesn’t cover tons of new ground, but it is a great Jordan Peterson interview. I especially like the way the two dissect topics on history and philosophy.
43. Jordan Peterson and Russell Brand Have an Electric Conversation on Equality, Compassion, Politics, and Spirituality
Russel Brand and Jordan Peterson in the same room having a discussion about life… what couldn’t you love about that? Brand’s views are based on compassion, love, spirituality, revolution, and change. Peterson, on the other hand, has a slightly sterner approach: “don’t fix what’s not broken.” I always love hearing conversations between two smart people who see the world in radically different ways. Though he focuses on many experiences from the Cold War era, he still can tackle modern spirituality with his usual charisma.
44. Hitler Was Way More Evil Than You Think
Just when we thought Hitler couldn’t get any more evil, good ol’ Dr. Peterson explains how he was.
45. Stop Being So Bloody Nice
I’ve been learning in recent months about the dangers of being too nice. I’m naturally very agreeable and lack assertiveness and negotiation ability. It was Jordan Peterson who first alerted me to the dangers of being too nice, and told him to stand up straight. I’m glad I listened.
46. Learn to Befriend Your Conscience
When I’ve experimented with plant medicine like psilocybin and ayahuasca, I have often heard the voice of my conscience. I wrote about that here. One thing Jordan Peterson does regularly is have a conversation with his own conscience, just as I did on plant medicine. It’s an incredibly powerful technique. In this video, Peterson explains how he does it. Maybe Donald Trump should see this!
47. What The Myth of the Buddha Reveals About Us
In this lecture, from the bigger lecture series Maps of Meaning, Peterson breaks down the psychological narrative of the Buddha and even makes the claim that Buddha had PTSD before his enlightenment. If you’re at all interested in Buddhism and spirituality in general, by listening to this lecture, many of your loose incoherent ideas will come together.
48. Jordan Peterson, Joe Rogan, and Bret Weinstein Have a Legendary Conversation That’s Relevant to All Human Beings
Bret Weinstein is a biologist and evolutionary theorist, hearing him and Jordan Peterson dive deep into biology here is not only fascinating, but it’s also necessary.
49. Sam Harris and Jordan Peterson Talk Mythology
This is the second conversation between Sam Harris and Jordan Peterson. In their first talk (listed earlier as number 16) they got caught up on the notion of truth and ended up in a debate where neither would concede. This discussion focuses more on Peterson’s claims about mythology. Sam Harris raises some fantastic counter-arguments, as per usual. Which side are you on?
50. Jordan Peterson and Aubrey Marcus On Truth and Responsibility
Aubrey Marcus is a self-improvement badass—similar to Joe Rogan, he’s someone who’s combined many different elements of life advancement (plant medicine, meditation, fitness, entrepreneurship) to create a really epic lifestyle.
Dr. Jordan B. Peterson Resources
- 16 Jordan Peterson Memes That Made Me Clean My Room With Laughter
- 7 Thought-Provoking Questions from Dr. Jordan B. Peterson
- 35 Principles from Jordan Peterson On Mastering Productivity at Work
- 40 Profound Life Rules from Jordan Peterson Everyone Should Know
- 15 Terrifying Books Jordan Peterson Urges All Smart People to Read
- 12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos | Hardcover | Kindle | Audiobook |
- Maps of Meaning: The Architecture of Belief | Paperback | Kindle | Audiobook |