Charlie Munger is the greatest American thinker since Benjamin Franklin, a multi-billionaire investor, Warren Buffett’s business partner, and one of the biggest intellectual influences. Munger’s advice to those who want to succeed is to develop a mental model of the world. Find one that works.
I think it is undeniably true that the human brain must work in models. The trick is to have your brain work better than the other person’s brain because it understands the most fundamental models: ones that will do most work per unit.
If you get into the mental habit of relating what you’re reading to the basic structure of the underlying ideas being demonstrated, you gradually accumulate some wisdom.
You’ve got to have models in your head. And you’ve got to array your experience ‑ both vicarious and direct ‑ on this latticework of models. You may have noticed students who just try to remember and pound back what is remembered. Well, they fail in school and in life. You’ve got to hang experience on a latticework of models in your head.
I have my own mental model of the world, which is why I’m able to see what others can’t.
My model of the world is based on years of experience studying human behavior. I see evidence of hoaxes where as the rest of the world sees a true story. I see Trump’s rise where as the rest of the world sees a “sexist pig.”
To put it frankly, I understand how the world works because I understand people. I have a mental model of how to deal with people.
The main guiding principle of my life is what economists call revealed preferences.
Revealed preference theory, pioneered by American economist Paul Samuelson, is a method of analyzing choices made by individuals, mostly used for comparing the influence of policies on consumer behavior. These models assume that the preferences of consumers can be revealed by their purchasing habits.
My mental model of the world leads me to understand a few things about life:
You have major blind spots in life and fatal flaws. Imagine you want to destroy your own life. Put yourself into the place of an enemy. Where would you attack you?
Women admire strong men and are repulsed by weak men. Women will say the opposite is true. Hence why I know Trump will capture the women’s vote, despite what “pundits” and “experts” claim.
Don’t tell me you’re tired of reading about Trump. I see the page views and podcast listens. Your preferences are revealed.
Male feminists are sexual predators who get in with an “in group” of women (Mean Girls) in order to terrorize and attack other women. You’d be wiser to trust a womanizer around your children than you would a male feminist.
People are afraid of standing out. From this you can understand why most people do not want to succeed and teaching “success,” while lucrative, is largely a waste of time.
Wine and children speak the truth. If a kid tells you you’re fat, ugly, or smell bad…Get working on that.
In a group of people, the one children and animals are drawn to is the most charismatic.
Fame seekers do not want fame to share a message. They want approval, usually because they did not get this approval from mom or dad. You can crush the ego of a famous person far easier than you can a normal person’s. Thus, Cuck Rogen.
Fragile and boring comedian @amyschumer cried because a teenage boy called her a mean name. Sensitive. Easy to see why she has no edge!
— Mike Cernovich (@Cernovich) January 18, 2016
Journalists are not paid by their readers. They are owned by billionaires. Trusting what pundits say makes you a patsy.
Most science is not science. Science is made up of flawed people like yourself. These people will fabricate data and commit fraud in order to increase their personal and professional prestige.
Going to the hospital is the most dangerous decision you can make, as flawed medical decisions are one of the top three leading causes of death.
Most people will do anything to avoid a fight and simply want to avoid drama. Make it easy to be your friend and hard to be your enemy.
If people tell you that an insult is childish, it’s because the hit landed.
— Mike Cernovich (@Cernovich) August 10, 2015
You must understand how the world works or else you won’t know what is reliable. You won’t recognize when you are being manipulated.
Mental models and talent stacks bros. The rest is easy.
— Mike Cernovich (@Cernovich) April 27, 2016
These are the skills you need to make it in 2016 and beyond.
(What they don’t teach in college.)
- Game/how to meet women
- Wall Street scams/why you should only invest in index funds
- Cogntive biases
- Media hoax spotting
- Basic personal finances
- Public speaking
- Energy management and creation
- Physical exercise and nutrition
- A blue belt level of BJJ self-defense techniques
- How to spot the sociopath next door
- Overcoming anxiety/nervousness
- Copy writing
- Marketing/brand building
- Imposing your will on reality
- Brain washing yourself
- How to develop an anti-fragile business model
- Data analysis and A/B testing
- How to take a proper profile picture
- How to take a picture of landscapes/products/movements
- Art of story telling
- Influence: Psychology of Persuasion
- Punchy writing style/business writing
- Run a social media account and/or email list
If you’ve read Scott Adams’ books, you’ll now that he’d say that list resembles something of a talent stack. Everything I do is build around my business. My skills are cumulative.
I can use my skills to sell books, supplements, seminars, real estate, and even a political candidate. (Many of you have noticed that my memes on Twitter end up in political campaigns.)
In fact, selling books is the hardest business there is. My skills used in selling books could be transferred to any area where humans gather to buy and sell goods or simply to hang out.
Of course there are other talent stacks. Here is Trump’s.
Yes, that’s a lot to learn. But what the hell else are you going to do – watch TV and post on Internet message boards?
Until I write a complete Book of Life, check out my other books.