6 Secrets to Winning Without Luck
The Insider's Guide to Uncommon Success
2 Important Announcements
Holiday season is here 🎉.
For those who celebrate, I wish you a Merry Christmas and a Very Happy New Year. May your Christmas be filled with joy, laughter, and the warmth of loved ones. And as we step into the New Year, I wish you happiness, prosperity, and countless beautiful moments.
On this occasion, I have 2 important announcements:
I am offering a 20% discount on the Yearly Subscription of Winning Strategy. The offer ends on 31st December 2023.
I’ll be taking next week off to recharge my brain and mind, so there won’t be any posts on the 25th, 28th and 30th of December.
The year 2023 was full of action but drained me mentally and emotionally. I missed countless get-togethers with family and friends. What kept me going were your kind comments and support.
To you and many others ( I can’t include all due to image size restrictions) who took the time to write to me, I want to express my deepest gratitude. I read your comments every morning, and they fill me with joy and energy, motivating me to keep going. So THANK YOU!!! 🤗
You don’t need Luck. You need Preparation.
My Aim for the New Year 2024 is twofold:
help you sustain your current role and
help you move up the ladder.
So apart from the usual day-to-day process and product knowledge, in the new year 2024, we will focus on learning the heck out of HUMAN SKILLS.
The good thing about “skills” is that they reduce your dependence on “Chance” and “Luck.”
You create your own luck when “you meet opportunity with already prepared skills.”
Below are my 6 Secrets to Winning Without Luck.
These are not skills but mindsets necessary to learn the skills. The more you have them, the faster you learn.
#1 Cognitive Reframing
It’s a psychological technique.
It makes you change the way you look at a situation and alter its meaning and impact on your life.
You shift your perspective to see things in a different, often more positive or productive, light.
Here's a simple example to illustrate cognitive reframing:
Example: Job Rejection
Normal Thinking: When people don’t get the job they apply for, they feel sad and think, "I'm not good enough" or "I always fail."
Cognitive Reframing: Instead of dwelling on these negative thoughts, successful people often think,
"This rejection is not a reflection of my entire career or my capabilities. This experience has given me a chance to learn and improve my interview skills, and I can use this knowledge to do better next time."
You don’t deny your emotions.
You find constructive ways to respond to challenges, turning negatives into “opportunities.”
A well-known figure who exemplifies mastery in cognitive reframing is Dr. Viktor Frankl, a neurologist, psychiatrist, and Holocaust survivor.
He is most famous for his book "Man's Search for Meaning," in which he describes his experiences in Nazi concentration camps during World War II.
#2 Second-Order Thinking
You analyze situations by looking beyond the immediate effects of an action.
Consider the longer-term consequences.
Ask, "And then what?" after every decision to foresee the chain reaction of events that might follow.
Example: Implementing a New Work Policy
Original Perspective: Imagine you're in charge of a team and decide to implement a new policy to increase productivity, like extending work hours.
Initially, you might think,
"This will surely lead to more work getting done."
Second-Order Thinking: Instead of stopping at the first outcome (more work hours leading to more productivity), you apply second-order thinking.
"What will be the effects of these extra hours on team morale? Could it lead to burnout, reduced quality of work, or even higher turnover?"
It doesn't mean overthinking every decision to the point of inaction.
You’re mindful that your decisions can have a broader impact than what's immediately visible, and it's important to consider these potential effects to make more informed choices.
Warren Buffett's investment philosophy exemplifies second-order thinking.
He doesn't just look at the immediate potential of a business or stock but also considers the long-term implications and the broader context.
#3 Antifragile (What we call Agile)
Nassim Nicholas Taleb developed this concept.
An antifragile system or person doesn't just resist shock; they actually become stronger or improve when exposed to stress, volatility, or disorder.
Example: Responding to a Work Crisis
Original Perspective: Imagine a crisis hits your workplace – a major project fails, or a key client leaves. The typical response might be stress, worry, or looking for ways to quickly return to normal.
Antifragility: Instead of just trying to survive the crisis, you adopt an antifragile approach. You think,
“What can we learn from this situation? How can we use this challenge to improve our processes or services? Maybe this is an opportunity to explore new markets or innovate.”
Embracing antifragility isn't about seeking out stress or chaos but about being prepared to use these situations to your advantage. It's a powerful mindset that transforms potential negatives into positives, leading to growth and improvement.
Musk's career and business strategies exemplify the principles of antifragility – thriving and growing stronger in the face of challenges, risks, and disruptions.
#4 Polymathic Learning
Polymathic learning refers to the practice of studying and mastering multiple, diverse subjects or skills.
It's about being a "jack-of-all-trades," not just focusing on one area of knowledge.
Example: Career Development
Original Perspective: Let’s say you're focused on your career in a very specific field, like IT. What many IT people think,
"I just need to know everything about IT and nothing else. That's the best way to succeed."
Polymathic Learning: Instead of concentrating solely on IT, you decide to explore different areas. You think,
“What if I learn about Agile Project Management, basic graphic design, and maybe even some psychology? These skills could give me new perspectives and ways to solve problems in IT.”
Polymathic learning doesn't mean you have to be an expert in everything.
It's about being open to learning from different disciplines and understanding how this varied knowledge can enrich your primary field of interest or work.
It’s about becoming “T” shaped.
He is an entrepreneur, author, and public speaker, best known for his books such as "The 4-Hour Workweek."
Ferriss's diverse range of expertise and interests across various fields exemplifies the essence of a polymath.
#5 Nonviolent Communication
NVC is a communication skill developed by Marshall Rosenberg.
It focuses on empathy and understanding in conversations, especially when resolving conflicts or discussing sensitive topics.
Example: Resolving a Disagreement with a Colleague
Original Perspective: Imagine you're in a disagreement with a colleague. You might think,
“They're wrong, and I need to prove my point.”
This can lead to a heated argument where both parties feel unheard and defensive.
Mastering Nonviolent Communication: Instead of focusing on who’s right or wrong, you approach the situation with NVC.
“Let’s understand each other’s points of view. What are their needs and feelings in this situation? How can I express my needs and feelings without attacking them?”
You don’t avoid conflicts or suppress your feelings.
You learn to express yourself honestly and clearly while also listening to and respecting the perspectives of others.
She advocates for the courage to be vulnerable and to express one’s true feelings and needs in a way that is respectful and non-threatening.
#6 Intellectual Humility
You accept the limits of your knowledge and become ready to learn from others.
It involves being open-minded and willing to change your opinions when presented with new evidence or perspectives.
Example: Participating in a Team Meeting
Original Perspective: Let’s say you're in a team meeting, and you believe your approach to a problem is the best. You are thinking,
“I know I'm right about this. There's no need to listen to others’ ideas.”
Practicing Intellectual Humility: Instead of insisting on your viewpoint, you adopt a mindset of intellectual humility. You think,
“I have my own ideas, but I do not have all the answers. Let’s hear what others have to say. Maybe they have insights or solutions I haven’t considered.”
You don’t doubt your intelligence or abilities.
You balance confidence in your own knowledge with an openness to learn from others.
Feynman was passionate about teaching and had a unique ability to explain complex physics concepts in simple, accessible language.
His style reflects his belief in the democratization of knowledge and the idea that there's always room for learning and improvement, even in explaining well-understood principles.
Quote of the Week
"The greatest glory in living lies not in never falling, but in rising every time we fall."
From Long Walk to Freedom: by Nelson Mandela
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Here, I try to give you Career, Progress, and Self-Development insights as I learn them myself.
Wish you a successful career journey ahead.
Until next week 👋
“I share things I wish I knew in the starting years of my career in the corporate world."
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