How To Fail At Almost Everything And Still Win Big

Scott Adams: How To Fail At Almost Everything And Still Win Big: Kind of the Story of My Life ISBN:1591847745


Chapter One The Time I Was Crazy

Chapter Two The Day of the Talk

Chapter Three Passion Is BullShit

Chapter Four Some of My Many Failure-s in Summary Form

Chapter Five My Absolute Favorite Spectacular Failure

Chapter Six Goals Versus Systems (No Goals, Habit-s)

Chapter Seven My System

Chapter Eight My Corporate Career Fizzled

Chapter Nine Deciding Versus Wanting

Chapter Ten The Selfishness Illusion

Chapter Eleven The Energy Metric (Bright Eyed And Bushy Tailed)

Chapter Twelve Managing Your Attitude

Chapter Thirteen It’s Already Working

Chapter Fourteen My Pinkie Goes Nuts

Chapter Fifteen My Speaking Career

Chapter Sixteen My Voice Problem Gets a Name

Chapter Seventeen The Voice Solution That Didn’t Work

Chapter Eighteen Recognizing Your Talent-s and Knowing When to Quit

Chapter Nineteen Is Practice Your Thing?

Chapter Twenty Managing Your Odds for Success

Chapter Twenty-one The Math of Success

Chapter Twenty-two Pattern Recognition

Chapter Twenty-three Humor

Chapter Twenty-four Affirmations

Chapter Twenty-five Timing Is Luck Too

Chapter Twenty-six A Few Times Affirmations Worked

Chapter Twenty-seven Voice Update

Chapter Twenty-eight Experts

Chapter Twenty-nine Association Programming

Chapter Thirty Happiness

Chapter Thirty-one Diet (Good Diet)

Chapter Thirty-two Fitness (Physical Fitness)

Chapter Thirty-three Voice Update 2

Chapter Thirty-four Luck

Chapter Thirty-five Calendar Tree Start-up

Chapter Thirty-six Voice Update 3

Chapter Thirty-seven A Final Note About Affirmations

Chapter Thirty-eight Summary


Chapter Thirty-seven

A Final Note About Affirmations

I think we can all agree that affirmations are a phenomenon of the mind and belong in the domain of psychology and perception

That said, I can tell you that in my case affirmations appear to have more power than one might expect from positive thinking

The most obvious explanation for the apparent power of affirmations is selective memory

Another perfectly good explanation of the apparent power of affirmations is that people who report success with it are liars

False memory is another possible explanation

Another possible reason that affirmations appear to work is that optimists tend to notice opportunities that pessimists miss

Studies show that you need not be a natural-born optimist to get the benefits of better perception.2 You can train yourself to act like an optimist—and writing affirmations is probably good training—so that you get the same benefits as natural optimists when it comes to noticing opportunities

Another explanation for the apparent power of affirmations might be that we have the causation wrong

Another possible explanation for the apparent power of affirmations is that our tiny human brains have not evolved to the point where they can give us an accurate impression of our reality

If you’ve read my blog, you know I’m fascinated by the possibility that we humans are nothing but holograms living in a computer simulation

And please don’t e-mail me to ask for the detailed instructions on affirmations so you can do it “right

I think a deep and consistent focus on what you want is all that is required

If you plan to try affirmations, I recommend keeping your objectives broad enough to allow some luck

Chapter Thirty-eight Summary

The model for success I described here looks roughly like this: Focus on your good diet first and get that right so you have enough energy to want to exercise (Keystone Habit). Exercise will further improve your energy (Bright Eyed And Bushy Tailed), and that in turn will make you more productive, more creative, more positive, more socially desirable, and more able to handle life’s little bumps.

Once you optimize your personal energy, all you need for success is Luck. You can’t directly control luck, but you can move from strategies with bad odds to strategies with good odds. For example, learning multiple skills makes your odds of success dramatically higher than learning one skill. If you learn to control your ego, you can pick strategies that scare off the people who fear embarrassment, thus allowing you to compete against a smaller field. And if you stay in the game long enough, luck has a better chance of finding you. Avoid Career traps such as pursuing jobs that require you to sell your limited supply of time while preparing you for nothing better.

Happiness is the only useful goal in life (Authentic Happiness). Unless you are a sociopath, your own happiness will depend on being good to others. And happiness tends to happen naturally whenever you have good health, resources, and a flexible schedule. Get your health right first, acquire resources and new skills through hard work, and look for an opportunity that gives you a flexible schedule someday.

Some skills are more important than others, and you should acquire as many of those key skills as possible, including public speaking, business writing, a working understanding of the psychology of persuasion (influence), an understanding of basic technology concepts, social skills, proper voice technique, good grammar, and basic accounting. Develop a habit of simplifying (simplest thing). Learn how to make small talk with strangers, and learn how to avoid being an asshole. If you get that stuff right—and almost anyone can—you will be hard to stop.

It might help some of you to think of yourself as moist robots and not skin bags full of magic and mystery. If you control the inputs, you can determine the outcomes, give or take some luck. Eat right, exercise, think positively, learn as much as possible, and stay out of jail, and good things can happen.

Look for Patterns in every part of life, from diet to exercise to any component of success. Try to find scientific backing for your observed patterns, and use yourself as a laboratory to see if the patterns hold for you.

Most important, understand that goals are for losers (NoGoals) and systems (Habits) are for winners. People who seem to have good luck are often the people who have a system that allows luck to find them. I’ve laid out some systems in this book that seem to work for me. Your experience will differ, but it always helps to be thinking in terms of systems and not goals.

And always remember that failure is your friend. It is the raw material of success. Invite it in. Learn from it. And don’t let it leave until you pick its pocket. That’s a system.

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