Sunday, January 29, 2017

Life Moves Pretty Fast

Life is complicated. Here is a partial list of some principles I use to help guide my reasoning and action. 

  • Keep your options alive. Optionality is a very important and undervalued concept. And the corollary: Options are more valuable than plans.
  • When in doubt, choose the upside. This does not mean be optimistic, although I am. This is about positioning oneself to be disproportionately exposed to upside potential. 
  • Be optimistic. There will be another day. Things will get better than how they seem at their worst or when considered from the worst-case scenario. 
  • Yield (choose 'flight') in the face of irrationality. Stand up (choose 'fight') in the face of injustice.
  • Trust in market processes. And the corollary: Trust the signal the market is providing.
  • There is enjoyment and learning in any and every situation.
  • When in doubt, choose quality over quantity or efficiency.
  • Don't by default attribute to malice what you could otherwise attribute to ignorance or bad luck. This one is adopted by recommendation of Tim Ferris (it is really just Hanlon's Razor), but I was already working with something very similar before I heard his version. My version goes: Don't assume ill intent; assume ill design or poor execution. People are much more likely to be stupid or unlucky than evil.
  • Taken directly from Derek Sivers: If it is not "Hell Yeah!, then it is "No."
  • Improve everything that you touch. Don't take my word for it. Dr. King said it much better. And the corollary: Be selective about what you engage in and be satisfied with reasonable improvements. Remember that perfectionism is a fault not a virtue.
  • Specialize in your competitive advantages; seek to outsource everything else. Following this advice is the road to success. Don't take my word for it. Steve Martin is a better authority.
  • Assume there is a good reason for things you find puzzling, but consider that improvements are possible.