What sort of writing could you create if you worked on it (be it ever so rarely) for the next 60 years? What could you do if you started now? Gwern
It’s not May 4th, I’m aware.
For the past few days, I’ve been writing at 11PM, just trying to get something out before midnight. I’ve also been complaining about this challenge I gave myself.
It isn’t productive for the quality of this blog. Therefore, I’m dropping the 30-day publishing challenge.
I learned what I wanted to, though.
- I have good ideas that aren’t multi-thousand step-by-step guides, and I shouldn’t be afraid to publish them, regardless of the word count.
- I am not good as a daily writer.
I like to mull on an idea for 2-3 days, and also have a day to edit.
With proper preparation, of course, I can do this as a daily writer, but the biggest problem I’ve encountered is: I don’t have enough ideas.
If I go back (and actually be accountable for) weekly posts, I’ll have enough time to fulfill these three things I learned about myself and my writing style and push out much better posts.
See you on Friday!
There are three types of gains: Exponential, Linear, and Logarithmic.
Each one has its own advantages and disadvantages. It’s more important to recognize what types of gains you’re getting from an activity than to be doing an activity that gives a specific kind of gain.
When you’re taking on a project or jumping down a rabbit hole, it’s important to know when to stop, or when to keep going. If current growth feels slow, but you know that this activity gives you an exponential gain, you’ll know to keep going until the gains start coming in more rapidly than you can handle.
What’s the difference?
Due to issues regarding copyright, I had to draw my own little graph. Excuse the shakiness.
As you can see, logarithmic gains give you the most results very early on, and then slowly lower. An example of logarithmic gains is weightlifting. In the first few months of lifting, the pounds you’re lifting will grow at at an unimaginable rate, and once you reach your limit as an amateur, gains will turn very steady and slow.
Linear gains simply continue progressing at the same rate. An example of linear gains are the amount of cash in a savings account.There is a set interest, and your money grows according to that interest.
Exponential gains start slow, and then build and build at a faster rate than you can handle. An example of this might be your business. It will take the most effort to get your first 10 customers. Everything’s easier from that point forward, until your company’s as big as Apple’s and the customers line up outside your stores.
This is all basic algebra, but we’re using these concepts to frame our decision-making.
In order to use this as a framework for decision-making, realize this is a model. Nothing is as easy as any of these types of gains, and there will always be obstacles along the way. If you use the growth models as perfect predictions of how you will receive gains, you will be disappointed. There are always obstacles.
How do I use this knowledge?
Think of a project you’re investing in. Do you know what kinds of gains it will yield, and when you should stop?
If you’re hoping to learn psychology to help you understand yourself and make yourself a better employee, know that this sort of research has logarithmic returns. Therefore, reading the three most popular psychology books in the world will give you the most return for your time and money. The more you read, the more repetitive and niche the books will become, and they’ll no longer relate to your situation.
On the other hand, if you’re hoping to build wealth, realize that you build more wealth by having more wealth. How do you get more wealth? Build more wealth. The gains are exponential, and you must realize that if you’re going to build wealth in an effective manner.
Have any questions? Leave a comment below or email me at [email protected].
I was going to develop a series called “What I’ve Been Consuming,” last year. The problem is, I don’t consume that much anymore. I read one book a week, watch one movie a week, don’t play video games regularly anymore, barely discover any new music, and I don’t surf the net at all.
I expect to do a yearly review of the books I read at the end of 2014, but I don’t consume enough to justify a monthly series on the topic.
I’m a firm believer in consumption–don’t get me wrong. I think you need it to be original, but I’m valuing more consumption away from the screen these days.
What I do online, though, I’m a die-hard fan for. Everything I’m subscribed to has changed my life at least once. The list always changing, because I’m always experimenting with new blogs and people to follow online, but as of right now–April 17th, 2014, here’s what I’m subscribed to:
I keep out a few things I’m subscribed to, either because the posts are very infrequent or I skip a lot of the received content. I could’ve also forgotten about a few.
- Sebastian Marshall (sebastianmarshall.com) – The tagline is “Strategy, Philosophy, Self-Discipline, Science. Victory.” How much more awesome can you get?
- Ryan Holiday (ryanholiday.net) – There’s a lot on books and mindset here. I highly recommend subscribing to the Reading Recommendations Newsletter as well.
- Ev Bogue (evbogue.com) – Ev has interesting thoughts on tech and the open web.
- Alex Thornton (alexandermthornton.com) – Alex is a very cool guy with very interesting thoughts. He’s also another teenager trying to get ahead in the world.
- Agon (diegallantly.com) – Even though Agon writes under a pseudonym, this is as honest as a blog can get. The only real focus for this blog is constant progress.
- Manish Suwal (enwil.com) – Here’s some honest, practical self-improvement and food for thought.
- Ramit Sethi (iwillteachyoutoberich.com) – You will never get more quality and depth out of a blog post or email than Ramit’s stuff. It’s absolutely amazing, and there’s already a huge (nearly 10 year) archive of stuff to look back on.
- Zach Obront (zachobront.com) – Mix psychology, philosophy, and self-improvement, and you have one of the best blogs on the net.
- Noah Kagan (okdork.com) – There’s a lot here on marketing, tacos, and self-improvement. Noah writes in a very real and approachable way.
- Raam Dev (raamdev.com) – Raam’s essays will teach you how to live life and use your money.
- Charlie Hoehn (charliehoehn.com) – Charlie hosts a lot of interesting insights, and although he doesn’t post too frequently, he puts out great stuff when he does. The Recession-Proof Graduate changed the world.
- Letters of Note (lettersofnote.com) – The title explains it all. Most of the letters are absolutely gorgeous. It’s my cultural porn
- Niall Doherty (ndoherty.com) - There’s crazy amounts of honesty here. Niall does amazing things like reporting every dollar he’s spent every month. The current focus is business, self-improvement, and travel.
- Fabian Kruse (friendlyanarchist.com) – Fabian writes about an unconventional way to live and think. Instead of hyper-ambition, slow down and enjoy the view.
I have a very love-hate relationship with podcasts. There are so many I want to get into (history podcasts in particular), but I just can’t bring myself to do it. I have a very specific taste, and it seems to be very interview-based.
- WTF with Marc Maron – I just discovered this podcast recently, and I am obsessed. I love Marc Maron because he’s not afraid to talk about the dark side of life. Each episode is funny, dark, and inspirational at the same time.
- The School of Greatness – This is the only sort of self-development podcast I can stand. There’s a huge cast of people that Lewis interviews, from athletes to entrepreneurs to celebrities, and he knows exactly what to ask them.
- Mountain Shores – This is a monthly (or so) chat between Fabian Kruse, Milo McLaughlin, and (sometimes) Michael Nobbs about making it with a creative life.
- Love Bollywood - It’s the only Bollywood podcast I know of. Interviews with the people I adore are always fun to listen to.
Even though this might seem like a long list, consider that the average frequency of publishing is once a week. Consuming my online media takes so little time every day, it’s almost disappointing. Do you know of any blogs or podcasts that I might enjoy? Leave a comment below or email me at [email protected].