My winner effect is taking on epic proportions.
“You’re as cold as ice, willing to sacrifice.”
[Friday, 9:58 PM]
Inspired by Mikael Syding’s cold resistance, I went out running the other day in shorts and T-shirt, even though it was semi-snowy and minus degrees.
First I was running through some industrial areas, like Rocky.
Then I ran past a couple of huge concrete towers, thinking: “Someone actually made these.” That means I can also make them, and probably make them better.
When I looked UP at the towers, I got uncomfortable (I’m slightly afraid of heights). Therefore I forced myself to do it 3 more times.
I nearly tripped because of this. How embarassing.
About halfway into the run, I started bleeding profusely from one of my nostrils. How annoying.
At first, I wanted to turn back home, but since I’ve not failed a running session in over two years, I refused to sabotage my winning streak!
So I kept running.
After about 20 minutes, my nose stopped bleeding. But until then I had to swallow the blood or spit it out. Probably looked disgusting. Parents taking their children for a walk looked at me with scorn in their eye. I exposed their children to blood (for the first time ever, in their shielded upbringings).
Then I did some muscle-ups in an outdoor gym. Mentally, I was feeling good, but physically, I guess my body was too cold–because I was unable to do my third set properly. That annoyed me again.
During my run I did not see a single person my age.
They are probably down-town, drink-in-hand, sitting in their favorite booths like the cast from How I Met Your Mother.”
Good for them. What a waste of human life.
My priorities are different.
I don’t have the time to work out as much as I used to. So I have to grab the occasional weird time to do it. Like now.
To be honest, it sucks. Because I’m used to savoring my workouts. They’ve been the highlight of my days for years. But no more. Now that is relegated to my morning readings, when I converse with the greats of history.
Oh well. Another day another dollar.
Good thing I can just “maintain” my body and still be in good shape.
I knew this was going to happen, so I prepared for it. I live in the future.
Do one thing at a time–and do it seriously. Gain sufficient momentum to just “maintain”, then move on to the next thing. Repeat.
Without sacrifices, you get nowhere.
But this is nothing.
When Charles Munger was 31 years old, his oldest son died in the hospital. Then his wife divorced him. A few years later a doctor screwed up a cataract operation, leaving him permanently blinded in one eye.
–But he didn’t let any of that stop him from building his business empire, and becoming one of the smartest people in the world.
Munger focused on the work at hand and kept the grand strategy in the back of his head, without feeling sorry for himself in any way.
. . . While raising 8 children.
What sacrifices have you made?
Malcolm X stayed away from women for 12 long years. He had total and utter commitment to his cause. That’s why I know his name.
Yes, it takes a while to make something out of yourself. Push through it.
You have to buy into the vision. If you can’t do that you will never succeed.
The first person you must sell is always–surprise, surprise–yourself. To contend with the greatest men in history, you must first be convinced that you belong in their league.
What else are you going to do?
[Pictured: Ivar Kreuger’s Match Stick Palace, the courtyard]
Strategic Objective 2016
I recently wrote out my strategic objective for this year.
2015 didn’t go quite as I had planned–it went better.
2016 will be a good year for me. Probably the best so far in my life.
Not necessarily because I’m going to be 10x better all of a sudden, but rather thanks to investments and sacrifices I’ve already made, some of which will now bear fruit. Call it retribution.
You either make up your mind or you lose your mind.
You must regularly do things like meditation, reflection, visualization, goal-setting, and planning. Or you will lose at life.
If you can’t do this, start practicing.
Because, otherwise, you’ll spend a hell of a lot of time and energy on things that don’t get you where you want to go. There’s a big difference between being efficient and being effective.
The reason I am where I am today is because I’m more effective and long-term oriented than most people. I realize those are some of my strengths (as I see others spinning their wheels in quick sand).
3 Lessons Learned (or re-learned) in 2015:
- Avoiding overstimulation. 1
- Avoiding habituation (more on this soon).
- Avoiding bad health and injuries (possibly from future training).
Basically, minimize risk for all bad things which can be anticipated.
2) I shall not work on things unless they will help me gain (or solidify) sustainable competitive advantages.
A.K.A, focusing as much time as possible on long-term investment of my time, as opposed to doing things that only generate temporary, short-term effects. This includes the making of money.
2 b) I must build systems and other things which last, like Andrew Carnegie: Take everything away from me and I’ll be back in no time.
My phone was stolen recently. I did not get upset. I lost only monetary value. The opportunity cost was larger. My commonplace is intact.
I won’t have my life’s work taken from me.
3 I shall focus on the fundamental 80/20-activities more, and not do things which aren’t yielding high return on investment.
(Investment = time, money and emotional commitment.)
For example, the reason I can put so little effort into fitness & health but still be in great shape is because I’ve completely 80/20-ed that area. Same goes for learning things and memorizing Justin Timberlake trivia.
3 b) To think more about alternative cost–and pondering cumulative return of time in future scenarios–rather than about being frugal with money.
I no longer cut back on food, and I’m going to stop cooking my own food soon (unless it’s the only way I can get a healthy meal).
When my phone was stolen I bought a new one fast. I didn’t try to find the best deal or do hours of reading up on comparisons between different phones. I just bought a similar one as last time, with insurance this time.
This does not come to me naturally, because I’ve always been extremely frugal, and it has helped me a lot earlier in life. But this sort of thinking no longer benefits me, so, like a snake shedding its skin, I’m getting rid of it.
8 Recent, Random Observations
1) In life, like investing, people want the quick [stock] tips; they do not want to do their own thinking.
I read an old book called Makings of a Stock Broker not long ago. Here’s an excerpt from that book which piqued my interest:
I had two classes of customers–the wise and the dumb fucks; and the latter didn’t want any statistics or facts. They want an excuse for what they do in the stock market. They number around 95% of the total.
This is funny because it’s true–and not just in finance. Everwhere. If you’re looking for an excuse, you will find it. Confirmation bias rules supreme.
2) Don’t waste time.
You could sit for an entire day and read “idiot compassion” articles (as Kyle said) or you could spend that day working on your business.
3) Do not be a spectator.
Stop watching others succeed–do it yourself instead.
. . . Then they can watch you. It feels good.
Do it while you are still in your prime, that’s the best time.
The clock is ticking.
It pays to break the rules and/or differentiate yourself when everyone else is doing the same thing. Which is usually whatever requires the least amount of effort or thinking. (More examples of this in the next article.)
5) Envy is local.
People get caught up in petty B.S 2 (like male vs female wages), instead of trying to increase their value and leverage to the point where such a discussion is totally irrelevant. Instead of bickering over crumbs spilled off of someone else’s table, they could get to work & bake their own cake!
I am envious of LKY, Flagler, and Munger.
6) When you are working hard, it is important that you:
- Practice mindfulness, meditation & gratitude.
- Deliberately induce variation and novelty into your tasks.
- Look upon everything as practice (for when you’re on top).
This helps to keep habituation and boredom away.
And, over the long term, it is one of the key things that distinguishes the best from those who are merely “good” 3.
This is often the difference between the “coulda’-woulda’-shoulda’ people” versus the select few who will go down in history as exemplars.
7) To be a master, fall in love with the process.
The best way to do that is to. . .
8) Do stuff you like with people you like and respect.
Like Buffett and Munger did.
They did “lifestyle design” 50+ years before the term was invented. And they didn’t use it as an excuse for noble indulgement. They improved things.
- Book: The biographical book Buffett (as seen above) is not only an entertaining read, but it will also teach you most of the fundamentals of value investing.
- Movie: Whiplash. What it takes to be the best and why most people don’t have what it takes.
- Resource: Buy yourself a laptop cooler if you use a laptop. It’ll help you work from anywhere.
- Resource: The add-on Lazarus is great for filling out forms or recovering lost information.
- Tip: Do mobility stretches a few times per week. I am nearly as good as the video.
- Tip: Start recording daily lessons each day. This is great for quarterly or yearly reflections. I have it set up automated for my commonplace.
- Tip: Do one important thing per day. Something that gets you closer to your long-term goals.
- Tip: If something takes less than 5 minutes to do, and it needs to be done, do it immediately.
- Tip: Buy an empty book and start filling it with book summaries.
[Fast-forward 2 years and you’re a winner. One of the best in your age cohort.]
I have 2 questions for you:
- How was 2015 and what things will you focus on in 2016?
- What would you like me to write about?
Alrighty then. That’s it for now.
I have lots of content, but limited time to post it.
However, one article I will write is about my experience with candida and how I overcame it.
People have been asking me to cover that for over a year now.
One of the things I’ve done to 80/20 my life recently is to purge my email list for SGM of 80 % of its readers (those with lowest open and click rates).
So, I may therefore have removed your subscription. If you want to get back on my newsletter, you can do that here:
(If you did not receive an email with a link to this article, you were removed.)
I’m going to write a series of emails for subscribers, where I go into my top tips for success and self-development. If you’re a long-time reader, you may be familiar with much of the advice. If not, you will find it beneficial.
Since people have asked, I’ll also include some personal details. I’m not super comfortable talking about myself, but I’ll do so a bit more in the future.
I will write and send these emails over the next 2 weeks. Stay tuned.
Many have asked regarding the release of Breaking out of Homeostasis (BOOH). Unfortunately, it has been delayed due to other obligations (like business and my podcast with Mikael Syding. Both are going well).
The book will probably be out sometime in the first half of 2016. Most of the content is done, it just needs proper editing. Then there’s the marketing aspect–which takes the most time. 4
I will not put out the book until I feel content with it.
Legacy > $.
If you’re not already on the book waiting list for it, you can just sign up here:
It’s more important to avoid raising your stimulatory threshold, than it is to get into an optimal state. ↩
90% of the problems most people bother with would go away if they just stopped shifting the blame, stepped up their thinking, attitude, and work ethic. ↩
(The “good” fall into homeostatic autopilot and get stuck in habituation sooner rather than later. They stop reinventing themselves and begin to “go through the motions”. Then they stop growing. Often permanently.) ↩
It’s easy to write a book, but it’s hard and time-consuming to write a book that can stand the test of time. ↩