The World Is Malleable

  • "There are no 'Adults'
    • Everyone's making it up as they go along. Figure it out yourself, and do it." - Naval
    • “guard against the prestige of great names; never be surprised by the crumbling of an idol or the disclosure of a skeleton” - Lord Acton
  • Branson: A business is anything that makes people’s lives better. Simplifying people’s lives is a business.
  • Paul Millerd:
    • You're doing the thing everyone does at the beginning of a solo path — you're looking to be saved. No company, no other person's playbook, or metric of success will save you. The only thing that matters is coming back to the thing you are meant to do. You must do it on your terms. Men waste years trying to avoid this.
  • Beware of shadow careers: via Steven Pressfield:
    •  “Sometimes, when we’re terrified of embracing our true calling, we’ll pursue a shadow calling instead. The shadow career is a metaphor for our real career. Its shape is similar, its contours feel tantalizingly the same. But a shadow career entails no real risk. If we fail at a shadow career, the consequences are meaningless to us.”
       
  • Tom Morgan from What Nobody Tells You:
    • I frequently encounter people in various degrees of distress caused by being stuck or lost, mostly professionally. I offer them all a profoundly optimistic insight. I believe your present suffering is directly proportional to your future potential. I can’t see how it could be any other way. If you had no latent potential, and were content to be stuck in a mediocre life, there would be no psychological pain. The vast majority of us start our professional lives as parts of a larger organization. This can provide us with marketable skills and necessary discipline. But it sometimes means adopting a professional persona that increasingly conflicts with your internal sense of integrity. The mask that eats your face. Too often we’re paid to stagnate, not to grow. Contrary to a lot of self-help and spiritual literature, I’m not sure that we can travel from “corporate value” to “personal value” either quickly or easily. This is because in order to get paid to be yourself, you first need to know what your unique gifts are and then match them to what the world needs. This process often requires an intense suffering you wouldn’t voluntarily buy, even if you could find a guru crazy enough to sell it to you. A substantial benefit of private wealth, for you or your family, is that it can provide some shelter from the storm during a transformation. As long as it doesn’t get so comfortable in there we forget to change. “Your armor is preventing you from growing into your gifts.” Only once we’ve started to do that, I find economic value often follows. The degree to which your outer life sometimes reflects your inner life is nothing short of mystical. You always seem to have to take the first step yourself, to cross the threshold voluntarily. It’s easier to act yourself into a new way of thinking, than it is to think yourself into a new way of acting. Once you hear the call to adventure, you have the choice of the pain of stagnation or the uncertainty of exploration. Both are impossibly daunting, but only one of them definitely ends in a literal or metaphorical death.
       
  • From Life In Half A Second
    • Importance of self belief and responsibility to make kids believe
      The idea of belief barriers (fleas in jar, 4 min mile)
    • But more important than accents, vocabulary, and behavioural quirks is the influence our environment has on self-belief. The greatest influence from our childhood is what our parents make us believe about ourselves. Some kids are lucky, like me. My parents always said I could do anything, be anyone, and I grew up believing that. The only thing that separated me from what I wanted in life was hard work. I believed that as a child and I believe it now - it's the truth.
    • Other kids aren't so fortunate. Their parents might neglect them, ignore them, never be around, or tell them they'll never amount to much, that they're nothing special, that there are limits to what they can do in life, to who they can be. Such kids have difficulty in school not because they're incapable of performing well, but because they're incapable of believing they can perform well. Studies show that a child's self-belief has more bearing on academic success or failure than actual competence. And when these kids become adults, they spend decades trying to unlearn false beliefs, discovering that the world isn't flat after all, that what others have done, they can also do. Some succeed, others don't. That's why the greatest gift parents can give their children is self-belief. The beliefs kids develop and hold true about themselves become vital forces in their success or failure in everything they do in life.
    • Choose people around you carefully as they will either help or hinder. Change your environment to change your self-belief
  • Josiah O'Brien, who explained why he worked so hard to rehabilitate from a disastrous injury and compete again: "There are two pains in life: there's the pain of discipline, and then there's the pain of regret. You choose which one."
  • “Entertainment is giving people the emotion they want” Grant Sanderson
  • Matt Bateman thoughts on agency:
    • Agency is rate limited by competence...build a shed, develop informed opinions about history, resolve your social anxiety, learn an instrument. These and like victories are the countless premises from which the conclusion “I can author my life” follows.
    • Choice is big muscles, an initial lift; competence is small muscles, granular control; persistence is endurance, sustained interest. Agency is the sum of these (and more).
    • Choice can offered and competence can be scaffolded. The hardest thing to solve for, the most developmentally fragile, is persistence.
    • The endurance part of agency is built first by getting joyfully lost in a task. The capacity to occasionally do things you don’t like comes in large part from developing the capacity to do things you do like. Most people never develop the latter and so struggle with the former.
    • Many of the components of education thought to be low-agency are actually perfectly suited for high-agency education. Practice. Repetition. Memorization. These are good methods by which to intentionally shape your own soul.
    • Agency is not a natural state. Removing blockers to agency is important but it’s more important to build the scaffolding of agency, which is not there by default.
    • Agency is for everyone. It’s like honesty. It’s a virtue to be cultivated, not a lucky personality trait.
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