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January 4, 2021
“To win true freedom, you must be a slave to philosophy.” - Epicurus
Let’s face it, philosophy has gotten a bad rap. Thought to be the domain of old grey-bearded academics and cave-dwelling hermits, most people today have an aversion to philosophy or philosophical discussions. It was Tim Ferriss who first opened my mind to it, by his simple and elegant idea of philosophy as an operating system (like Windows) for the mind.
After looking at it that way, I knew it was something I had to work on and improve if I wanted to improve myself and the outcomes I was achieving. In the article below, a modern day philosopher sans grey hair, Mark Manson, walks you through the logic on why philosophy is such a fundamental aspect of living a good life.
This was a great, refreshing read with practical ideas to inspire you. The key point - you do not need to be chasing hypergrowth, blitzscaling or any of the other terms used to describe the obsession with building fast growing, large market startups. There are other paths to success, freedom and wealth.
This time, you get to see behind the scenes of a solopreneur - someone who creates (or aims to create) a one-person business. What is reassuring is seeing the “1,000 true fans” rule applied here again, showing us all that we do not need millions of people and cult followings to be successful. We just need to provide value for a small group of people and build genuine connections with our audiences.
I’ve talked about the benefits of reading and the types of reading you can do. In today’s edition, the shared content is all about how to read better to improve the retention and recall of information you read.
Tim explains a simple system to create a small index page at the beginning of the book. This is where you will note specific themes (e.g. power corrupts), insights (e.g. kayfabe in politics), mental models (e.g. cue, routine, reward) and even techniques (e.g. journaling prompts) depending on the type of book you are reading. This then becomes your map to the specific pages in the book and makes it easier when you want to look for specific themes or insights that you called out in your index.
It took me a long time to get over writing in books. Now that I have, I definitely enjoy my reading even more.
Bill Gates is all over the media these days, and has taken the role of thought-leader in this current covid-19 pandemic. But Bill Gates is neither a doctor nor a scientist in the fields of understanding disease, how they spread and how they are treated and contained. Is having billions of dollars the only qualification that’s needed to put him at the top of coordinating the overall response to the catastrophe?
I certainly don’t think so. It turns out that many people feel the same way. It also turns out that this didn’t happen overnight. Gates’ path to becoming this thought-leader/ philanthropist is the result of a 20+ year game of controlling and using the media to portray (design) an image of a harmless Mr Rogers.
“Insofar as journalists are supposed to scrutinize wealth and power, Gates should probably be one of the most investigated people on earth—not the most admired.”
Credit: Naven Naidoo
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