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How to Get Ahead in Life
Level 1 - NGMI
Welcome Avatar! In the year 2023, there are still people attempting to get ahead using the methods that worked some 40 years ago. We have a working theory that this is the reason the middle class is one of the roughest areas to be in.
If you start at the bottom you take massive risk since you have no other choice.
If you start at the top you also take massive risk since mom and dad have $5M+ so you don’t have any mental background stress.
The Middle? They stay there largely because whatever their parents did is passed onto them. Rarely do you see a person admit “yeah i did it wrong”. In fact, even if they admit they did it wrong, the person they are trying to emulate is also behind the times in many cases. So. Bad information is passed down and the cycle repeats. As a fun health example there are *still* people who think you should “carb up” the night before a major athletic event. Yes. Seriously.
Part 1: Set Yourself Up With the Right Information
There is no way to get rich without scaling something that earns without your input. You certainly need to be a good decision maker, however, income needs to be generated without you exchanging seconds, minutes or hours in exchange for those sweet sweet satoshis.
The Old Days - Labor: Generally speaking people above the age of 50 or so have this mentality. Employees = implied success. One of the questions they typically ask you is “how big is your firm” “how big is the headcount”.
The reasoning? Back in the industrial age, headcount was a good proxy for scale. Even when Microsoft was ramping up they had tons of people working since the growth caused tons of new issues and iterations on their entire product portfolio.
This leads people down the path of “you can tell how rich someone is by the number of employees”. While this is still the case in some instances (construction, trades, transportation and even sports), it is *declining* as a relevant metric at this point.
Second Item - Prestige: The majority of humans are status creatures. If this website wrote a negative article about Kevin in Wisconsin, he wouldn’t even flinch or care. If Forbes or the Wall St. Journal ran the same article, he would be livid.
This is because the assumption is that the “prestigious” media is more accurate.
This is also in decline. Nowadays, if you go directly to the source you can get much better information. This is how we’ve operated for years now and frankly it’s probably the only reason why we’re financially independent. If you ignore labels and simply *act* on information provided by someone who has *lived* the experience, the chances of success skyrocket.
Example: If you live your life acting in the same manner as someone: 1) better looking, 2) born into $10M+ and 3) genetically gifted anomalies… You’re doomed to fail. This goes against all of mainstream beliefs since we glorify the “prodigy’s”.
Instead you should look for people who are not as attractive, grew up with less and don’t have any particular trait that is *not replicable*. Now you’re looking in the right places because there is no “logical” reason why the person should be as successful as they are.
Autist Note: For the sports fans out there you want to be coached by someone like Steve Kerr not Lebron James. Chances a top 1% athlete can copy someone like Lebron is slim to none, since the athleticism is simply not there to copy the style of play.
Another example is the jungle! People can insult the cartoon anons all they want. The reality is that it is much harder to build an audience with *no* prestigious background vs. with the big plaster of “Harvard MBA and KKR” hanging in bold print font.
More Art Than Science: What is more replicable. A person who grew up with no money generating $10M off of a shoelace company or someone who grows up with no money but is able to run a 8.99 second 100M at age 18.
While the world record 100M time for a teenager is more *impressive* it is not replicable. It should be ignored. It’s up to you to determine what is or is not replicable based on your current tools/skillsets.
Another fun one is watching the boarding school kids who go to top tier elementary, middle and high-schools all end up at some mid level college. And. Eventually go into Investment Banking since their dad is a client of the firm.
To the outsider, the guy is impressive since he made it into the industry. On this side of the web, the person is underperforming by a country mile since the best he could do was a mid-tier bank after having all the resources in the entire world at his disposal.
Note: Before moving on, there is nothing wrong with being born rich or poor. You don’t choose your parents. The goal here is to look for people who are getting to places they “shouldn’t be” based on what they had to work with.
Part 2: Iteration after Iteration
Once you’re able to find a few replicable success models, the next step is to find your own skills. Don’t really care what they are. Some people are great at making everyone in the room like them: go into sales. Some people are better at spotting hard working gritty people: scale a labor intensive business. Others are best at spotting new trends: ecom/wifi money is great for this one. Finally, some are better at detail oriented number based items: Tech/software for you.
As you can see, life is fluid and you have to be flexible.
Even though you no longer *need* a massive team to get rich, it doesn’t mean that you *won’t* need one if you are in a labor intensive industry. This is a nuance that keeps the NPCs off of this side of the web. If you plan on starting a dental company there is no way you’re going to do that without a large number of employees any time soon. If you are starting a SaaS or E-com biz you need significantly less people.
How to Iterate: It’s actually pretty simple. Are you “good” at something in about 3-4 months? Then you are likely on the right track. If you’re still not good at something by then you don’t have a talent in it. This is just how it goes.
Humans are wired to always put you down and say you’re not good. Therefore if someone says you’re “good” at something you’re *really* good at it.
Think that through.
We’re not here to sell hopes and dreams. Not everyone can become Bezos or Zuckerberg. Not everyone can be a pro athlete. The only thing you can do is track down your talent and monetize it.
If someone says “I don’t have a talent” they are usually lying. They simply try two or three things and quit. Simply not enough iterations. Try 100 different things then come back. If you try to learn 3-4 skills with 3-4 hours a day of effort, you’re going to find out (in 6 months) if you have a talent for any of those items).
Narrow the List: The first filter is simple. Is this actually going to make you money in the future? Becoming a Spanish teacher is not going to generate a significant amount of income. Unless you’re building something like Rosetta Stone (a software company), going out and teaching Spanish is hard to monetize. Similarly, if you’re an extremely athletic person but decide to become a professional speed walker, your earnings are capped. Choose where you place that skill since becoming a professional baseball player sure pays a lot more than professional bowling.
The second one, the work needs to fit your personality type. If you’re even modestly self aware, you already know what you’re not good at. If you are a natural extrovert, becoming a writer or coder is not a good idea. If you naturally prefer to be left alone, then invert that statement and look at SaaS/Software.
After this the third item is to go back into the ole’ memory bank. Anything you were naturally pretty good at by age 16-19 or so will carry forward. At this point you’ve gone through the usual growing stages and are near adult maturity. Therefore, whatever you excel at will be a good starting point to branch away from.
The “Talent Funnel”: Once again, talent is underrated. The whole hard work beats talent concept is a meme. This isn’t a bad thing. Practically everyone has a talent, they are just too lazy to figure out what that talent is. They are too busy chasing things they enjoy doing vs. things they dominate.
As a note, you can easily spot a winner by how quickly they dislike something they are bad at. This is some sort of natural distain for losing. If someone is not good at say bowling they will never enjoy it. If someone is naturally good at say pool, you can be sure they will end up playing a lot more. Once again, being good at it is always more important than liking it.
Part 3: Your Surroundings
At this point, where you live honestly doesn’t matter all that much. In a weird way, the last couple of years the majority of “value” has come from the internet. This is not a joke.
We’re more confident in a few people we’ve met through the internet vs. the real world. While it is true that you should avoid all people who don’t have friends for 10+ years (suggests they can’t sustain them), it is also true that you’re more likely to find a like minded person on the internet. It‘s a scale game.
If the top 1% win in a city of 100,000, there are only 1,000 people to meet (you have to find them in the physical realm in a large surface area). On the internet there are 1 billion people so it’s a lot easier to jump around from “channel to channel” to find these 1%ers online (smaller surface area easier to bounce around).
On that note, we’ve eliminated the old “i don’t know anyone” excuse.
The vast majority of our readers will likely find their counter part online (if they need one!)
How about BowTiedFawn and BowTiedGator. Neither of them knew each other before the internet. Fast forward and they now have a multi-six-figure dental company on the internet. Think about that. In less than a year, two people met on the internet and started a successful business in 6 months.
Interpretation: While this sounds easy, the tricky part is interpretation of good info. Once again since this is a free post we can give a pretty easy filter for good information vs. bad information
On TV all the time? Likely stale/old since targeted at 45+ age band
Mainstream media spotlight? Best to fade. Just means legacy connections got them in the spotlight. Just look at the history for “Forbes 30 under 30” it isn’t pretty
CNBC/CNN/FOX type atmosphere? Once again far too mainstream and well known so best to avoid
Found a niche website with extremely different views keep digging
Find a niche website with extremely different views that work? Ta Da, gold mine
This is pretty much how it works.
If you’re not doing something different why do you expect to beat anyone? It doesn’t make any sense.
Part 4: The Final Point - Extremes
If you are an extreme person, people will always say “I DON’T AGREE WITH YOUR OPINION IT ISN’T TRUE”. This is the best possible complement you can get.
If people view your extreme stance as an opinion but you *know* it works, you’re far far far ahead of the game.
Being extreme is the only way to move the needle. How do you expect extreme results without doing something extreme?
It doesn’t make any sense at all. Does not compute. Never will.
How to Become More Extreme? Pretty simple. Take more risk. Risk is just another phrase for extreme and people will call you crazy or weird. Whatever they want to say. It doesn’t matter.
The key to becoming the right type of extreme is deep research. Deep research is through iteration of a topic you know well. There is a reason why people like AJAC is still succeeding in the fitness realm. While you may argue some of it is marketing, you don’t stay in any game that long without significant and extremely detailed knowledge about the topic.
Part 5: Put It Together
You no longer *need* to have a high employee number to get ahead. What you need is a clear direction on what type of business you will make. If you are on the internet, software is your friend (btw AI is just a fancy word for software anyway)
Prestige is just a way to pay employees less. They use their brand to make you feel something which allows them to pay you less. There is nothing prestigious about working harder for the same amount of money. Just because someone goes to a top school doesn’t mean they were smart. There is a non-zero chance they just had access to better education and training tools
You have to decide what type of success you can replicate. This is where most people fall apart. You can’t take advice from someone with a completely different skillset vs. your own. You have to find a successful person with a *similar* skillset
After this you iterate through as many new skills as possible. If you need a specific filter we’ve given it above
After that you find a group of people on that same path and enjoy the ride. Any time you steer off the correct path and into the mainstream path you’re heading into deep waters
Once you’re in take it to an extreme level. If you know you’re on the right path ramp up and start sprinting. After that you’ll establish yourself in that direction and the path is set. The trick? Better be certain.
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Disclaimer: None of this is to be deemed legal or financial advice of any kind. These are *opinions* written by an anonymous group of Ex-Wall Street Tech Bankers and software engineers who moved into affiliate marketing and e-commerce. We’re an advisor for Synapse Protocol 2022-2024E.
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