Monday, June 10, 2019

Always Stay a Student

LIFE IS ABOUT ALWAYS LEARNING.


Every man I meet is my master in some point, and in that I learn of him. —Ralph Waldo Emerson

The legend of Genghis Khan has echoed through history: A barbarian conqueror, fueled by bloodlust, terrorizing the civilized world. We have him and his Mongol horde traveling across Asia and Europe, insatiable, stopping at nothing to plunder, rape, and kill not just the people who stood in their way, but the cultures they had built. Then, not unlike his nomadic band of warriors, this terrible cloud simply disappeared from history, because the Mongols built nothing that could last.

Like all reactionary, emotional assessments, this could not be more wrong. For not only was Genghis Khan one of the greatest military minds who ever lived, he was a perpetual student, whose stunning victories were often the result of his ability to absorb the best technologies, practices, and innovations of each new culture his empire touched.

In fact, if there is one theme in his reign and in the several centuries of dynastic rule that followed, it’s this: appropriation.

Under Genghis Khan’s direction, the Mongols were as ruthless about stealing and absorbing the best of each culture they encountered as they were about conquest itself. Though there were essentially no technological inventions, no beautiful buildings or even great Mongol art, with each battle and enemy, their culture learned and absorbed something new. Genghis Khan was not born a genius. Instead, as one biographer put it, his was “a persistent cycle of pragmatic learning, experimental adaptation, and constant revision driven by his uniquely disciplined and focused will.”

He was the greatest conqueror the world ever knew because he was more open to learning than any other conqueror has ever been.

Khan’s first powerful victories came from the reorganization of his military units, splitting his soldiers into groups of ten. This he stole from neighboring Turkic tribes, and unknowingly converted the Mongols to the decimal system. Soon enough, their expanding empire brought them into contact with another “technology” they’d never experienced before: walled cities. In the Tangut raids, Khan first learned the ins and outs of war against fortified cities and the strategies critical to laying siege, and quickly became an expert. Later, with help from Chinese engineers, he taught his soldiers how to build siege machines that could knock down city walls. In his campaigns against the Jurched, Khan learned the importance of winning hearts and minds. By working with the scholars and royal family of the lands he conquered, Khan was able to hold on to and manage these territories in ways that most empires could not. Afterward, in every country or city he held, Khan would call for the smartest astrologers, scribes, doctors, thinkers, and advisers—anyone who could aid his troops and their efforts. His troops traveled with interrogators and translators for precisely this purpose.

It was a habit that would survive his death. While the Mongols themselves seemed dedicated almost solely to the art of war, they put to good use every craftsman, merchant, scholar, entertainer, cook, and skilled worker they came in contact with. The Mongol Empire was remarkable for its religious freedoms, and most of all, for its love of ideas and convergence of cultures. It brought lemons to China for the first time, and Chinese noodles to the West. It spread Persian carpets, German mining technology, French metalworking, and Islam. The cannon, which revolutionized warfare, was said to be the resulting fusion of Chinese gunpowder, Muslim flamethrowers, and European metalwork. It was Mongol openness to learning and new ideas that brought them together.

As we first succeed, we will find ourselves in new situations, facing new problems. The freshly promoted soldier must learn the art of politics. The salesman, how to manage. The founder, how to delegate. The writer, how to edit others. The comedian, how to act. The chef turned restaurateur, how to run the other side of the house.

This is not a harmless conceit. The physicist John Wheeler, who helped develop the hydrogen bomb, once observed that “as our island of knowledge grows, so does the shore of our ignorance.” In other words, each victory and advancement that made Khan smarter also bumped him against new situations he’d never encountered before. It takes a special kind of humility to grasp that you know less, even as you know and grasp more and more. It’s remembering Socrates’ wisdom lay in the fact that he knew that he knew next to nothing.

With accomplishment comes a growing pressure to pretend that we know more than we do. To pretend we already know everything. Scientia infla (knowledge puffs up). That’s the worry and the risk—thinking that we’re set and secure, when in reality understanding and mastery is a fluid, continual process.

The nine-time Grammy– and Pulitzer Prize–winning jazz musician Wynton Marsalis once advised a promising young musician on the mind-set required in the lifelong study of music: “Humility engenders learning because it beats back the arrogance that puts blinders on. It leaves you open for truths to reveal themselves. You don’t stand in your own way. . . . Do you know how you can tell when someone is truly humble? I believe there’s one simple test: because they consistently observe and listen, the humble improve. They don’t assume, ‘I know the way.’”

No matter what you’ve done up to this point, you better still be a student. If you’re not still learning, you’re already dying.

It is not enough only to be a student at the beginning. It is a position that one has to assume for life. Learn from everyone and everything. From the people you beat, and the people who beat you, from the people you dislike, even from your supposed enemies. At every step and every juncture in life, there is the opportunity to learn—and even if the lesson is purely remedial, we must not let ego block us from hearing it again.

Too often, convinced of our own intelligence, we stay in a comfort zone that ensures that we never feel stupid (and are never challenged to learn or reconsider what we know). It obscures from view various weaknesses in our understanding, until eventually it’s too late to change course. This is where the silent toll is taken.

Each of us faces a threat as we pursue our craft. Like sirens on the rocks, ego sings a soothing, validating song— which can lead to a wreck. The second we let the ego tell us we have graduated, learning grinds to a halt. That’s why Frank Shamrock said, “Always stay a student.” As in, it never ends.

The solution is as straightforward as it is initially uncomfortable: Pick up a book on a topic you know next to nothing about. Put yourself in rooms where you’re the least knowledgeable person. That uncomfortable feeling, that defensiveness that you feel when your most deeply held assumptions are challenged—what about subjecting yourself to it deliberately? Change your mind. Change your surroundings.

An amateur is defensive. The professional finds learning (and even, occasionally, being shown up) to be enjoyable; they like being challenged and humbled, and engage in education as an ongoing and endless process.

Most military cultures—and people in general—seek to impose values and control over what they encounter. What made the Mongols different was their ability to weigh each situation objectively, and if need be, swap out previous practices for new ones. All great businesses start this way, but then something happens. Take the theory of disruption, which posits that at some point in time, every industry will be disrupted by some trend or innovation that, despite all the resources in the world, the incumbent interests will be incapable of responding to. Why is this? Why can’t businesses change and adapt?

A large part of it is because they lost the ability to learn. They stopped being students. The second this happens to you, your knowledge becomes fragile.

The great manager and business thinker Peter Drucker says that it’s not enough simply to want to learn. As people progress, they must also understand how they learn and then set up processes to facilitate this continual education. Otherwise, we are dooming ourselves to a sort of self-imposed ignorance.

--Excerpted From Ego Is the Enemy

Thursday, May 30, 2019

John Wick 3


I came away from the movie with a few lessons you probably wouldn’t have guessed…
If you listen to the news you might think I’d come away from such a gory violent film with the desire to slaughter a small Japanese village.
And there's something to that because according to one study — violent movies make aggressive people more aggressive.
But for me I came away with a desire to…
1. Be More Professional
Bloodied and beaten, John Wick collapsed under the hot desert sun.
As he was about to close his eyes for a final time, he was rescued by a man on camelback. He was then taken to a canopy where there was a hot bath and a new black suit awaiting him.
In other words — even in our darkest, hottest moments its important to dress well.
All the main characters in the film look so glossy and are so deliberate in their movements. Their style and behavior reminds me of the quote,
“How you do the little things is how you do everything.”
2. Join an Organized Crime Ring
Okay, maybe not, but there’s something to be said to belonging to a larger group of people who share similar interests, talents, values, goals, and rules.
You never know when you might need someone to stitch up your bullet wounds.
3. Live by Rules
Part of what makes the movie so interesting is the paradox of how a lawless underground society is so strongly governed by laws.
I am a firm believer in setting personal rules, but they can be difficult to adhere to when there aren’t any clear consequences for breaking them.
John Wick 3 is all about consequences.
“Consequences.” — John Wick
It’d be a lot easier to not skip “gym day” if you knew that in doing so an army of trained assassins would come to kill you.
“He knew the rules. He broke them.” — Winston
As the movie argues — rules are helpful because they are the only thing that separate us from animals.
“Rules… without them we live with the animals.” — Winston
4. Become Great at Something
Whoever comes, whoever it is… I’ll kill them. I’ll kill them all.” — John Wick
I don’t have any interest in becoming great at Kung-Fu but watching someone be great at something inspires me to want to be better at the areas I care about.
Mob Boss: It’s not what you did, Son, that angers me. It’s who you did it to.
Son: Who?! That fucking nobody!?
Mob Boss: “That “fucking nobody” is John Wick. He was an associate of ourselves. We call him Baba Yaga.
Son: The boogeyman?
Mob Boss: John wasn’t exactly the boogey man. He was the man you sent to kill the boogeyman.
Son: Oh
5. In-Case-of-Emergency
When we’re young we don’t have as much of a safety net for when things go wrong, but as we get older we start building up our cache of guns (metaphorically speaking, of course ;).
It’s smart to build up a cache of tools: duct tape, locks, pepper spray, financial diversification, backup credit cards, etc.
Better to have multiple-lines of defense for when the inevitable storm comes.
Do these things and you just might be called, Baba Yaga.

#ThursdayThoughts



When you don't have money, you think money is going to solve your problems —and to some extent it does. 
But at a certain point it brings its own problems with it. 
Having money is like a having a child. 
You have to care for it, you have to tend to it, and you have to watch it every minute! 
You do this not only to make sure it grows, but to make sure it doesn’t shrink. 
Money is alive and volatile! 
That means I am constantly thinking about my money. 
If you’ve never experienced it, it might be hard for you to understand. 
Amazing feeling! But that’s what’s crazy. I mean, I enjoy all this stuff well enough. 
But as far as my possessions go, honestly — and I’ve really thought about this — I get more pleasure from my FAMILY than anything else. 
That’s the truth, the absolute fucking truth. 
Materially, I don’t need much to be happy. 
I already have everything I want. 
What I am working for, if I am entirely honest, is just the thrill of making more money. 
It’s like playing a game, a game in which the prize is power, the power that is represented by that money. 
Power for what? It doesn't matter! 
The prize is the power itself. It is the feeling of power. 
There is a sensation I get when I make money… If you haven’t experienced it, I can only compare it to sex, or gambling, or a drug. 
It’s exactly like that — maybe even better. 
So my investments and my business ventures are like various casino games, except in my games the odds usually favor me…. And what I live for on a daily basis — this is the darned truth — is just the thrill of playing those games. 
I first started to realize how fucked I was when I found myself thinking about other people’s professions in terms of the bottom line. 
I mean, I have a pal from childhood who is a doctor, and I found myself thinking what an irrational job choice this was for him. He cares about money too, and I just thought, what a waste, how inefficient a use of his time and talent… there are so many better ways to make money. 
Crazy, huh? 
I don’t know what the hell it’s like to be a doctor, but I would guess there’s a whole level of meaning there that people get off on. 
I am not sure I like who I am. 
But I have no choice, no more than a lifelong drug or sex addict does. 
I see businessmen bullshit themselves about why they are really doing it — you know, that they are trying to improve society, or it’s all for their family, or whatever other bull crap. 
That could just be PR, but it also can be self-deception. 
Don’t fool yourself, I think! 
I know you! 
You’re just feeding the monkey! … So, that’s my story. 
I am not entirely proud of my life, but I accept it. 
I try to be as comfortable as I can, to have as much fun as I can, but I’m not in denial about anything. 
I know I’m basically just a junkie living for the next hit of MONEY.

Wednesday, May 08, 2019

Wednesday Wisdoms

  • The best way to get even is to forget.
  • Feed your faith and your doubts will starve to death.
  • God wants spiritual fruit, not religious nuts.
  • Some folks wear their halos much too tight.
  • Some marriages are made in heaven...
    but they ALL have to be maintained on earth.
  • Unless you can create the WHOLE universe in 5 days...
    then perhaps giving "advice" to God, isn't such a good idea!
  • Sorrow looks back, worry looks around, and faith looks up.
  • Standing in the middle of the road is dangerous... 
    You will get knocked down by the traffic from both ways.
  • Words are windows to the heart.
  • A skeptic is a person who...
    when he sees the handwriting on the wall claims it's a forgery.
  • It isn't difficult to make a mountain out of a molehill; just add a little dirt.
  • A successful marriage isn't finding the right person ...
    It's BEING the right person.
  • The mighty oak tree was once a little nut that held its ground.
  • Too many people offer God prayers, with claw marks all over them.
  • The tongue must be heavy indeed, because so few people can hold it.
  • To forgive is to set the prisoner free... 
    and then discover the prisoner was you.
  • You have to wonder about humans... 
    they think God is dead and Elvis is alive!
  • It's all right to sit on your pity pot every now and again... 
    Just be sure to flush when you are done.
  • You'll notice that a turtle only makes progress when it sticks out it's neck.
  • If the grass is greener on the other side of the fence... 
    you can bet the water bill is higher for sure

  • Monday, April 29, 2019

    Deep thoughts part 2

    1. Be like an iceberg. Don’t reveal all of yourself. Save your hidden beauty and splendor only to a few who are willing to dive deeper with you.
    2. Everyone wants to eat but not everyone is willing to hunt.
    3. Everything is good but not everything is worth it.
    4. It doesn’t matter whether you are a black person or a white person. We are all people of color.
    5. Do not seek to be successful. Seek to be valuable.
    6. Don’t judge ME by my Past. I don’t live there anymore.
    7. People may not always tell you openly how they feel about you, but they will always show you in deeds.
    8. Life is all about which lens we use to see things.
    9. Every single day you make a choice about life. Think before you act.
    10. At first they’ll ask you WHY you’re doing it. But later they’ll ask you HOW you did it.
    11. Life is a reflection of the six different tastes of food. Sweet, Sour, Salty, Bitter, Pungent, Astringent. The seventh one has not yet been discovered.
    12. It is okay for a child to play with the mother’s breasts, but quite dangerous to play with the father’s testicles.
    13. Some people want things to happen. Some people make things happen. And some people wonder, “Why the hell do things happen?”
    14. Before healing others, heal yourself.
    15. Always try to do things in chronological order; it's easier for your feeble brain to comprehend and less confusing.
    16. He who dies with the most toys is, nonetheless, still dead.
    17. A guilty conscience needs no accuser.
    18. If you have something to tell me, tell me. I didn’t ask for explanations.
    19. Ignorance has a cure called Education. Craziness has its medication. But there is no cure for stupidity.
    20. Addiction doesn't kill the addict. It kills the conscience.
    21. The first thing in the human personality that dissolves in alcohol is dignity.
    22. Many people have gone further than they thought possible because someone else thought they could.
    23. The future is always beginning now.
    24. Those who live in the past limit their future.
    25. We fall in love not because we’ve found the perfect person, but because we have learned to see an imperfect person perfectly.
    26. You have to fight for whom you truly love, and love whom you’re fighting for.
    27. You have no control over whom your heart chooses to love, so just relax and enjoy the ride.
    28. A coward dies a thousand deaths before the brave dies once.
    29. Success is not the key to happiness. Happiness is the key to success.

    If you think you can't, think again

    1. Never follow a large crowd blindly. Large crowds usually follow a blind person.
    2. If you want to succeed fast find out what 99% are doing and do the opposite.
    3. Challenges are just opportunities disguised as problems.
    4. Don’t marry someone for beauty alone. Marry someone you can trust, relate with in a certain way and, share the same interests and aspirations;, for beauty will one day wear out.
    5. Don’t start a business because others are doing it or because you’ve just come across a lump sum. Start a business only because people are asking for it.
    6. Before you follow a rarely traveled path, first ask why people stopped travelling the path.
    7. Life is like a long sheet of cloth full of patches and stitches.
    8. A poor beggar who dies joyfully is richer than a great king who dies in anger.
    9. Learn from the ant. It can build an anthill 1,000,000 times its size using nothing but its legs, water drops and mud.
    10. Before you criticize think. Before you judge watch out. Everything has a way of coming back at you 7 times.
    11. A greedy, foolish ruler can sell his country for a morsel of meat.
    12. Greed is like eating tomorrow’s food in advance.
    13. Money will always chase those who solve problems, but run away from those who chase it.
    14. The secret of success is happiness. The shocking fact is that you can control it.
    15. Strive to do only the things that matter. The cost of doing what doesn’t matter is high.
    16. It’s cheaper to struggle your entire life finding your purpose than spending your entire life guessing.
    17. Happier is the person who tries and fails than the person never took a single step.
    18. Spend more time studying something then take a step of faith instead of wasting your faith on something that’s not worth it.
    19. Formal education will get you a job, but self-education will make you rich.
    20. Never be deterred by other peoples opinions of your abilities. Believe that your Maker never made a mistake.
    21. Never doubt your capabilities. You enough people and circumstances against you.
    22. Do not fear to try and fail. Fear becoming successful in trivial matters.
    23. Mistakes are a part of life, as long as you learn the lesson.
    24. Make less of a fool of yourself by learning to listen faster than you can speak.
    25. Pictures speak louder than words, but videos speak louder than a billion pictures.
    26. Every failure is a blessing in disguise.
    27. Quit worrying over spilled milk and go find another cow. There are plenty of cows to milk.
    28. In life everybody is struggling to get somewhere. Quit procrastinating and begin to move.
    29. You are a product of your own thoughts.
    30. Success is limited to a number of people who are willing to take a big risk.

    Wednesday, April 03, 2019

    Dark Lessons for Life

    Dark Lessons for Life

    1. One who care less in particular relations typically has more power than other.
    2. You can never change people around you no matter how hard you try.
    3. Respect yourself, because people will notice it if you don’t.
    4. Be nice to people and they’ll be nice to you is a myth.
    5. Small fluffy compromise of today can be the most demeaning and disheartening moments of tomorrow.
    6. One day we all will be the old souls and unappealing in the eyes of society.
    7. The less care you show about a person, the easier it becomes to end up with that person.
    8. Men can never be the women and women can never be the men. Both genders are different with different capabilities and natures.
    9. There is always this urge to sleep with someone else no matter how deep you are in love with your partner.
    10. Life is not fair so you can not always get someone or something you want so bad.
    11. people will turn their back on you to get ahead of you sooner than you think.
    12. Time will eat your life away quicker than you would expect.
    13. You will never know how close you are to being hated for until you are.
    14. People can easily abandon you for the small reason no matter how stronger bond you used to share.
    15. When things get tough you need to be your own best friends.
    16. Always make sure that your friends are truly your friends. damn they're not your friends.
    17. Bad is new normal and cool.
    18. Everything can change either for better or worse.
    19. You cannot change someone who does not want to be changed.
    20. Love does not only make you blind but also a fool, accept it.
    21. Someone said “show me one pretty woman and I will show you one man who is utterly tired of having sex with her”.
    22. Higher you set the expectations in relationship from the beginning, the harder it will be to sustain the relationship. E.g. sending your partner flowers each day and it will be cute for first few days, cheesy it will be after that, and then awkward and finally intolerable.
    23. Never share all of your secrets never ever.
    24. People don’t want to hear truths about themselves they want to hear sweet lies.
    25. There is no such thing as honest opinion in corporate life, people value white lies.
    26. If you don’t love yourself no one else is going to love you, also respect.
    27. Everyone has worn masks they play different roles by showing different roles. Lovers, family person, coworkers. you can’t imagine how different people can get in different social setting.
    28. Some people are evil, they enjoy it being evil. So, it’s not your fault if you end up being with such type of person.
    29. Grades can only get you to halfway. Your social skills are something people pay attention and value.
    30. Once your hurt someone, they will hardly forget it. They will always remember how much you did hurt them.
    31. Appearance does matter. We live in a critical and pretty judgmental world. Your family, your partner, coworker and your bosses will judge you for your actions.
    32. You cannot make everyone happy, it’s impossible. There will be always someone who will be disagreeing with you. Frankly, you are not living a life if you don’t have enemies.
    33. Money is everything, without money you are nothing. Undeniably Nothing.
    34. If you are not good at something people need then you are a burden even to your parents. They may not speak it.
    35. “Happy Family Frame” is all about your income. You are respected with respect to your earning in family. No one cares about your struggle except your parents.
    36. Nothing will make your relatives happy than you being jobless.
    37. When you get fail in life you will see that no one cares except your parents. So, live your life to fullest and make it happen. Do your best.
    38. All that glitter is definitely GOLD in a corporate life. If you have good contacts and network then you will reach good higher level. The one who struggle gradually and steadily will never be appreciated.
    39. Getting a job in this society is not happiness rather it is a relief and ego advocate.
    40. Majority of people want to achieve certain goals not because they want it but because others have achieved it.
    41. Marriage does not make a man, a family person. Not even having kids. So, the idea of “get him married. It will make him responsible” is old folks talking
    42. Marriage does not suppose to bring two family closer but two persons who crib together.
    43. No matter how many times you try to die, you will find some way to live for a few more years.
    44. Love is about accepting your partner with each and every flaw – is the biggest bullshit ever in this society. People in general hate flaws so would you eventually.
    45. People will use you open heartedly, throw you in a trash and will move on.
    46. Nobility has nothing to do with old age. People are evil by nature and they are till their death.
    47. Women can understand other women’s pain is an utterly overrated statement.
    48. Never set yourself on fire, to keep others warm.

    Thursday, February 28, 2019

    Why badasses get what they want

    Badasses get what they want.

    They have complete control over their lives.

    And sure sometimes things happen that may throw the badass off.

    But badasses are able to use mental toughness to bounce back quickly – often better than they were before.

    You may see these  “badasses” and wonder how you can be like that…

    But the truth is…

    We’re all badasses.

    We all have that inner badass deep inside of us.

    It’s just that some of this inner badassness has been numbed by social conditioning and a host of other environmental factors.

    … and lost over the years.

    When you look deep inside, you’ll see along, that you are already a badass.

    And when you harness that rock-solid inner badass (Neil calls it “Inner Game) --- you can help others tap into their inner badass.

    It’s a beautiful cycle…

    So here are a few reminders and guidelines for owning your inner badass today:

    #1 Stop Proving

    You have nothing to prove.

    No need to please, pretend, or protect in order to justify yourself.

    You are you. Own it.

    Everyone respects the person who is proud of his beliefs – no matter how weird or different.

    #2 Be More Curious

    Listen intently to someone when they speak to you.

    Look at the world with the eyes of a child.

    Ask more questions and engage in dialogue.

    Beautiful opportunities will open up for you if you are curious about all that is around you.

    #3 Look To The Company You Keep

    You are the average of the five people you spend the most time with.

    Yes, you’ve heard this a million times, and it’s true.

    We tend to absorb and reflect the attitudes of the people around us – it’s our human nature.

    Who you spend time with has a huge impact on how you see yourself and how you feel about yourself.

    Are the people you’re with building you up, or bringing you down?

    #4 Stop Wishing

    Just fucking take action and work towards what you want.

    Mindset is everything.

    #5 Play To Your Strengths

    Whatever you’re good at, do more of it.

    If you’re not sure --- get curious, deeply curious about yourself.

    Pay attention until you start noticing.

    Think about how you would spend your day if you could do anything you wanted…

    Now, make the time for yourself, and go do some of those things.

    #6 Avoid The Comfort Zone

    This is the danger zone.

    You go into it and go blind into what’s happening.

    The magic doesn’t happen in the comfort zone.

    It happens in the places that force growth – the risky, uncomfortable places.

    When we stop growing – we shrink and get left behind.

    Confidence comes from stepping out of the comfort zone.

    #7 Trust Your Full Intelligence

    Intelligence is not just about your brain.

    Your intuition and your emotions, even your gut – are all forms of intelligence.

    We may not be able to logically understand something or prove it with facts – but that doesn’t mean its not real.

    Pay attention to hunches or gut instincts.

    Deepen your connection to your intuition and that inner whisper that tells you what’s right and what’s not.

    This inner whisper is a superpower.

    Harness it.


    #8 Know You Are Ready

    So many people are always waiting, waiting, first this, then that…

    The truth is…

    You’re 100% ready right now.

    The time will never be perfect and the only way is to get started.

    Right now.

    Wednesday, February 27, 2019

    What no one tells you about entrepreneurship

    1. If you’re building a service business, the majority of your clients will expect you to go above and beyond for them, while doing the absolute bare minimum for you.
    2. Nobody pays on time. And the first time you learn that lesson, it’s not going to feel great.
    3. Firing people is the worst part of the job, by far.
    4. Every single employee you hire is going to want things nobody prepared you to give them, like a career trajectory.
    5. Once you’ve built a six-figure business, you realize how unimpressive it actually is (and you start to cringe at solopreneurs who start running Facebook ads talking about selling courses on how to build a six-figure company).
    6. Once you’ve built a seven-figure business, you also realize how unimpressive that is as well. The really impressive companies are the ones 8 figures and above, and that’s humbling to learn first-hand.
    7. When people say “nothing beats the highs of entrepreneurship, and nothing is scarier than the lows,” they’re telling you the truth. Unfortunately, you won’t have any idea how to fathom what those feelings actually feel like until you’re A) wide awake at 1:00 a.m. because some massive opportunity just came together and you’re wired out of your mind, or B) you’re lowering yourself into a hot bath at 3:42 p.m. on a Friday in an attempt to relax and get yourself to stop feeling like the walls are caving in.
    8. Even when you become profitable, you’re still in “startup mode.” Nothing is guaranteed. Ever.
    9. The amount of time you will spend in front of your computer will make you crave time away from any and all screens as much as possible.
    10. For the first year, year and a half or so, expect to sleep less, eat worse, go to the gym less, and barely touch your hobbies. Whatever semblance of work-life balance you think you’re going to be able to maintain that first year and a half of building a startup, you’re wrong. That said, you should still fight and try vehemently to get back to a place of balance as quickly as possible, because these are unsustainable habits.
    11. You will start to understand why 99% of people have no interest in becoming entrepreneurs and would rather just work a job they enjoy.
    12. You will learn the stark difference between a RM30,000 hire, a RM60,000 hire, and a RM90,000+ hire.
    13. You will have weird, really weird dreams about your business and some problem your subconscious is wrestling with.
    14. Your circle of friends will be entrepreneurs and founders themselves, since they’re the only people who truly know what it is you’re feeling and going through on a daily basis.
    15. People in your life, even people you truly care about and are close to you, will have very little patience for your “problems.” They’ll see the aspects of entrepreneurship everybody talks about: freedom, being your own boss, etc. What they won’t see, and simply can’t see, are all the other challenges that come with those select freedoms.
    16. A “growth over everything” mindset can be exceedingly destructive for startups. Yes, there is such a thing as growing too quickly.
    17. Cash is king, and the moment your monthly payroll exceeds 2 months of runway in your bank account, you’re toeing a dangerous line—and your strategy needs to be to stack cash as quickly and efficiently as possible.
    18. “If you can’t measure it, don’t do it.” My mentor gave me that one years ago, and even though I had thought I’d understood its significance, this was a lesson I really only internalized very recently. I’ll say it again: “If you can’t measure it, don’t do it.”
    19. People don’t buy processes. They don’t buy ideas, or approaches, or plans. People buy results. That’s it.
    20. Do not underestimate the value of a manager. A manager can make or break your growing organization. A manager can mean the difference between you, the founder, working “in” the business or working “on” the business. Managers are how you scale, and how you pass off responsibility so that you can continue focusing on bigger and bigger items. Without managers, you will end up becoming an employee within your own company.
    21. Ideas are the easy part. It’s the execution of those ideas that separate decent companies from great ones.
    22. Competition is a good thing. If you have a competitor, or a handful of competitors, you can save yourself a lot of learning time by watching them closely—especially if they’ve been around a lot longer than you. Chances are, they probably learned their lessons the hard way, and there’s a reason why they do what they do, the way they do it. Use that to your advantage.
    23. As a company, it’s better to be magnificent at one thing than haphazard at 12 things.
    24. Raising money is overrated—and until you’re experienced enough as an entrepreneur, you honestly won’t even know what to do with it once you have it.
    25. When you’re neck-deep in the startup grind, you will completely lose all sense of time and space. 
    26. I know I’m biased when I say this, but I wouldn’t be preaching it if I didn’t believe in it so wholeheartedly: building your personal brand as the founder is one of the single most effective things you can do for your entire company.  Do not, I repeat, DO NOT, underestimate the power of putting yourself out there as the face of your company.
    27. All that said, starting a company is a lot like how I imagine it feels to start a family. And for all its ups and downs, it’s one of the most rewarding things you could possibly experience in life.