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You Have To Live It To Believe It

You Have To Live It To Believe It
Richard Held and Alan Hein raised 20 kittens in pitch black darkness. Which is the kind of thing you should only do if it's necessary to prove a point critical to understanding how the world works. Thankfully they did just that.


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Seeing Isn’t Believing

Most of us have heard stories of hardships and catastrophic events of the past, like the great depression, or the dot-com bust, but haven’t lived through it, and not experienced the real pain of the disaster.

Hearing stories about something that happened in the past isn’t enough to truly realize the lesson from them.




Blind Spots

In the world of investing, having gone through a traumatic experience first-hand makes the difference between a cautious investor and a blind one. The scarred investor cannot think in the way the fresher, who hasn’t experienced the turmoil can. 

Our unique experiences impact our vision in ways we cannot comprehend on the surface.



Learning From The Past

Different generations have different investment risk appetites, with the younger generation wanting to take bigger risks and going into uncharted waters without any experience.

The New Generation, who hasn’t experienced turmoil and loss, are good at getting rich. However, the older, scarred generation is good at staying rich due to their general pessimism and conservatism. There is a need to balance the two aspects while taking an investment decision. People with different experiences aren’t necessarily smarter than others but just have a different worldview.



The World In Our Minds

Each of us has a mental world in our minds, constructed by our thoughts, beliefs, education, and experiences. We have developed a coherent story around our chaotic and unpredictable world, and that becomes our mental model.

Different people will come to different conclusions even when provided the same information, due to their having completely different mental models.



Action Mode

People can be influenced by lived experiences and this has the capacity to guide their future decisions, as opposed to merely learning about something.

Example: If we hear about a young girl killed by a drunk driver, we feel bad, but hardly do anything about it. But If we are a parent of that young girl and went through the horror ourselves, we have the drive to do something helpful.



Expand Your Mind

When we hear different perspectives, stories and experiences, we temporarily get out of our ‘mental model’ and become humbled, as we realize that our worldview was just a tiny fraction of all the other views.

People have different, varied motivations and can make decisions that may look crazy to us as we haven’t taken the same life journey as they have. This can apply to investment decisions as well as the career choices that people make.




The Lessons Of History

The Lessons Of History

History is a treasure-house of learning, and as many books teaching us lessons from history point out, what was true in the medieval ages is often true even now, though the circumstances, technolog...



“History never repeats itself, but man always does.”

1920 and 2020

1920 is a hundred years apart from 2020, yet how people think is largely unchanged. Human behaviour is still hinged on greed, fear, opportunity, scarcity, and basic instincts.

We have no idea what will happen in the future, but we do have a good idea about how human beings might behave in certain situations.

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One of the reasons why Stoicism is enjoying a revival today is that it gives concrete answers to moral questions.

Aristotle gave us an alternative conception of happiness

It cannot be acquired by pleasurable experiences but only by identifying and realizing our own potential, moral and creative, in our specific environments, with our particular family, friends and colleagues, and helping others to do so. 

The Half-Life of Facts

The Half-Life of Facts

Facts decay over time. And the time it takes to disprove or replace half of it can be predicted.

Data in medicine become half as relevant in 2-3 years. For exact sciences, 2-4 years.

Half life of facts and compound knowledge

If we want our knowledge to compound, we’ll need to focus on the invariant general principles.

Half-lives show us that if we spend time learning something that changes quickly, we might be wasting our time.