How to get rich, without getting lucky?

If you’ve been following this blog for some time, you know that I’m not into Twitter. Not because I hate it, but there’s just too much going on. I find that distracting. The only reason I go to the site these days is when someone on LinkedIn or email or one of the countless newsletters (I love them!) mentions some tweet or two that I should be paying attention to… 

And one such mention was in Derek Johnson’s newsletter that serendipitously directed me to this tweetstorm by Naval Ravikant. And boy, it’s golden! I don’t understand why this hasn’t gone viral until now. Or maybe it has; I’m just not that into Twitter. Anyway, the tweets below are a compilation of Naval’s thoughts on how to get rich — as in wealthy, not a million bucks in your bank account, although that will be just as cool — without getting lucky. 

Source: Naval’s Tweetstorm

I couldn’t afford to steal it off Twitter and post it here on my blog for you to read. Do me a favour; if you like this post, share it further with your friends and while you’re at it, copy and paste the bullet points into a word document, print it out, and place it on your desk for you to read it every day. It’s that damn good! 

On to the gems, enjoy! (I’ve bolded and italicized the ones that I loved!) 

  • Seek wealth, not money or status. Wealth is about having assets that you earn while you sleep. Money is how we transfer time and wealth. Status is your place in the social hierarchy.
  • Understand that ethical wealth creation is possible. If you secretly despise wealth, it will elude you.
  • Ignore people playing status games. They gain status by attacking people playing wealth creation games.
  • You’re not going to get rich renting out your time. You must own equity – a piece of a business – to gain your financial freedom.
  • You will get rich by giving society what it wants but not yet know how to get at scale.
  • Pick an industry where you can play long term games with long term people.
  • The Internet has massively broadened the possible space of careers. Most people haven’t figured this out yet.
  • Play iterated games. All the returns in life, whether in wealth, relationships, or knowledge, come from compound interest.
  • Pick business partners with high intelligence, energy, and, above all, integrity.
  • Don’t partner with cynics and pessimists. Their beliefs are self-fulfilling.
  • Learn to sell. Learn to build. If you can do both, you will be unstoppable.
  • Arm yourself with specific knowledge, accountability, and leverage.
  • Specific knowledge is the knowledge that one cannot train you for; if society can teach you, it can teach someone else and replace you. Specific knowledge is found by pursuing your genuine curiosity and passion rather than whatever is hot right now. Building specific knowledge will feel like play to you but look like work to others. When specific knowledge is taught, it’s through apprenticeships, not schools. Specific knowledge is often highly technical or creative. It cannot be outsourced or automated.
  • Embrace accountability, and take business risks under your name. Society will reward you with responsibility, equity, and leverage.
  • The most accountable people have singular, public, and risky brands: Oprah, Trump, Kanye, Elon.
  • “Give me a lever long enough and a place to stand, and I will move the earth.” – Archimedes. Fortunes require leverage. Business leverage comes from capital, people, and products with no marginal cost of replication (code and media).
  • Capital means money. To raise money, apply your specific knowledge with accountability, and show good judgment.
  • Labour means people working for you. It’s the oldest and most fought-over form of leverage. Labour leverage will impress your parents, but don’t waste your life chasing it.
  • Capital and labour are permissioned leverage. Everyone is chasing capital, but someone has to give it to you. Everyone is trying to lead, but someone has to follow you.
  • Code and media are permissionless leverage. They’re the leverage behind the newly rich. You can create software and media that works for you while you sleep.
  • An army of robots is freely available – it’s just packed in data centres for heat and space efficiency. Use it.
  • Write books and blogs and record videos and podcasts if you can’t code.
  • Leverage is a force multiplier for your judgement. Judgement requires experience but can be built faster by learning foundational skills.
  • There is no skill called “business.” Avoid business magazines and business classes.
  • Study microeconomics, game theory, psychology, persuasion, ethics, mathematics, and computers
  • Reading is faster than listening. Doing is faster than watching.
  • You should be too busy to “do coffee” while still keeping an uncluttered calendar.
  • Set and enforce an aspirational personal hourly rate. Ignore it if fixing a problem will save less than your hourly rate. If outsourcing a task will cost less than your hourly rate, outsource it.
  • Work as hard as you can. Even though who you work with and what you work on are more important than how hard you work.
  • Become the best in the world at what you do. Keep redefining what you do until this is true.
  • There are no get rich quick schemes. That’s just someone else getting rich off you.
  • Apply specific knowledge with leverage, and eventually, you will get what you deserve.
  • When you’re finally wealthy, you’ll realize that it wasn’t what you were seeking in the first place. But that’s for another day.

It’s a long list, I know, but it’s worth savouring over and over. Unless, of course, you will like to drift your way through life. 

All the very best. 

%d bloggers like this: