May 18: Everything I learned this week

I am gearing up for my next book. Whatever amount of writing you see from me, there is usually 10 times the amount of studying behind the scenes. Putting together a book (or a campaign for a business) spins off a lot of notes and research.

I’m going to test documenting some of these publicly. This will show a curated view of what I’m watching & reading. I got this message last week from Readwise, apparently I’m a power user or something!

Lots of output requires lots of input…

By the way, if you don’t have a Readwise account, it’s a really good tool to have.


Is it worth being wise? By Paul Graham.

  • Wise” and “smart” are both ways of saying someone knows what to do. The difference is that “wise” means one has a high average outcome across all situations, and “smart” means one does spectacularly well in a few.

Lucky vs. Repeatable, by Morgan Housel.

  • Jason Zweig of the Wall Street Journal once talked about what happens when you try to learn a very specific, non-repeatable lesson when a broader, very repeatable lesson is what you needed to pay attention to: “[After the dot-com crash], the lesson people learned from that was not, “I should never speculate on overvalued financial assets.” The lesson they learned was, “I should never speculate on internet stocks.” And so the same people who lost 90% or more of their money day-trading internet stocks ended up flipping homes in the mid 2000s, and getting wiped out doing that. It’s dangerous to learn narrow lessons.

Focus, focus, focus, by Price Pritchett.

  • So the secret is in finding the few things that are really powerful — truly pivotal — which make the difference between success and failure. Care about those things. Care about nothing else. Do those things. Do nothing else. To the extent that you possibly can, focus your work and your life on those areas where the “payback factor” is huge.

The Secret Teaching of All Ages, by Manly P. Hall.

  • In his treatise on Atheism, Sir Francis Bacon tersely summarizes the situation thus: “A little philosophy inclineth man’s mind to atheism; but depth in philosophy bringeth men’s minds about to religion.
  • The ideal function of philosophy is to serve as the stabilizing influence in human thought.

Other stuff

Check out my latest video on finding life’s purpose here.

One of my favorite videos talking about the historical evidence for the Bible (long but worth it).

Interesting video on how Donald Trump commercialized the intelligence agencies.

A great lesson on trading & following your rules for discipline.

Awesome thread by Jason Fried, founder of 37 Signals, on how to make decisions.


As always, we are publishing materials daily at and weekly at the Deep End. Both shows can be found here.


P.S. One of my businesses is growing and we are hiring sales reps.

You can apply here, OTE is $75k – $110k.

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