Health, Wealth, & Wisdom from Naval Ravikant | Eric Jorgenson on The Reader’s Journey

Check out The Reader’s Journey Episode Page & Show Notes

Key Takeaways

  •  Seek wealth, not status:
    • Don’t confuse wealth (having money) with status (being famous)
      • You can have an audience and be well-known (high status) but if you don’t have a business or monetize that audience, you won’t be wealthy 
  • You aren’t going to get rich renting out your time, you need to own equity:
    • When you trade your time for money, you can only earn when you’re working. But if you own a business or equity, you can make money even when you’re sleeping or on vacation.
    • There’s a lot of ways to own equity: 
      • Invest in the stock market
      • Invest in private startups
      • Work in a company and earn stock options
      • You can start a business and you’ll own 100% of the company
  • You need to use leverage to create wealth:
    • There are 3 main forms of leverage: capital, labor, and products with zero marginal cost
  • Naval’s meditation advice: Meditate first thing in the morning for 60 minutes for 60 days
    • Let your thoughts come and go and see what happens
    • A lot of unresolved issues with come to you and you can work towards getting to a mental inbox zero
  • Meditation is like intermittent fasting for the mind
    • There aren’t any negative side effects of meditation, you really have nothing to lose
  • If you’re new to reading, Naval’s advice is to read what you love until you love to read
    • If you want to read “junk” books, read them. Eventually, you’ll make your way to the “healthy” books.
  • “Read the stuff that you’re interested in and you’ll read twice as long or ten times as long and you’ll read more and you’ll get more ideas.”Eric Jorgenson

Intro

Books Mentioned

Inspiration For The Book

How To Get Rich (Without Getting Lucky)

  • Naval is probably best known for his Twitter thread on how to get rich without getting lucky. Here’s some advice from him:
  • Seek wealth, not status:
    • Don’t confuse wealth (having money) with status (being famous)
    • You can have an audience and be well-known (high status) but if you don’t have a business or monetize that audience, you won’t be wealthy 
    • Politicians are usually playing status games (well known but not wealthy). On the flip side, there are a lot of people who are very wealthy but anonymous.
    • It’s better to be rich and anonymous than poor and famous
  • You aren’t going to get rich renting out your time, you need to own equity:
    • When you trade your time for money, you can only earn when you’re working. But if you own a business or equity, you can make money even when you’re sleeping or on vacation.
    • Even if you’re a doctor or lawyer, to make serious money, you need to open up your own business or practice, and leverage other people to increase your total earning.
    • There’s a lot of ways to own equity: 
      • Invest in the stock market
      • Invest in private startups
      • Work in a company and earn stock options
      • You can start a business and you’ll own 100% of the company
  • You need to use leverage to create wealth:
    • There are 3 main forms of leverage: capital, labor, and products with zero marginal cost
    • Example of labor leverage: If you’re a lawyer, it’s better to pay someone to do your dry-cleaning or other minimal tasks so you can focus on higher-paying tasks 
    • Example of capital leverage: Warren Buffett makes on investment decision but it’s multiplied by many folds because he has the ability to invests billions of dollars
    • Example of a product with zero marginal cost: Creating an online course. Once you’ve built it, it costs you nothing to sell it to another customer.

Productize Yourself

  • One of the best ways to get wealthy is to productize yourself:
    • First, find something you enjoy doing and are curious about
    • It may take a few years, but work to became an expert in that domain 
    • Then, create a product using the specific knowledge you’ve acquired over time
      • Productizing yourself uses the third form of leverage (product with zero marginal cost)
        • You can create an app, write a book, develop an online course, etc. and it cost the same to sell it to ten people as it does to thousands of people

Tips For Happiness

  • Happiness isn’t random, it’s a skill that can be learned
    • Just like how you can learn how to get in shape or learn to get smarter, you can learn how to be happier
      • “It doesn’t mean it’s easy but it does mean it’s doable and there’s reason for hope” – Eric Jorgenson
  • Instead of seeing the world as malleable and yourself as fixed, see yourself as malleable and the world as fixed
  • You can’t choose what happens to you, but you can choose how to respond to what happens to you
  • Desire is a contract you make with yourself to be unhappy until you get what you want
    • Meditation is a great way to remove all desires in the present moment 
  • “Happiness is about your perception, not about what you have” – Eric Jorgenson
  • Think of the voice in your head as a crazy roommate, you need to learn how to live with them

The Benefits of Meditation

  • Naval’s meditation advice: Meditate first thing in the morning for 60 minutes for 60 days
    • Let your thoughts come and go and see what happens
      • A lot of unresolved issues with come to you and you can work towards getting to a mental inbox zero
  • Meditation is like intermittent fasting for the mind
    • There aren’t any negative side effects of meditation, you really have nothing to lose
  • There are many different forms of meditation:
    • Running
    • Journaling
    • Hiking
    • Sitting
      • The key point is to be alone with your thoughts 

Reading Advice From Naval 

  • Naval treats books like blog posts or tweets and jumps in and out of them as he pleases
    • He’ll skim or skip chapters until he stumbles onto something that he finds interesting
  • He spends a lot of his time rereading great books instead of reading new books
  • If you’re new to reading, Naval’s advice is to read what you love until you love to read
    • If you want to read “junk” books, read them. Eventually, you’ll make your way to the “healthy” books.
      • Naval started with comic books, moved to science fiction, then to science and math, and now reads a lot of philosophy
  • “Read the stuff that you’re interested in and you’ll read twice as long or ten times as long and you’ll read more and you’ll get more ideas.” – Eric Jorgenson
  • Often times the most interesting books are the ones who’s lessons you can apply immediately 
    • Alex’s calls this reading tip Read It When You Need It

Books That Influenced Eric 

  • As a kid, Eric read every single comic strip of Calvin and Hobbes by Bill Watterson 
    • “Bill Watterson’s world view and humor and philosophy is like deeply, deeply, embedded in me” – Eric Jorgenson
  • Poor Charlie’s Almanack: The Wit and Wisdom of Charles T. Munger by Peter Kaufman
    • “He’s so brilliant” – Eric Jorgenson
      • Eric read this book when he was 21 and found Charlie’s advice brilliant
        • After reading it, Eric became fascinated with mental models and persuasion 
    • The book cost about $60 but Eric says it’s a great investment

Additional Notes

  • How does Alex bridge the gap between reading and application?
    • After he finishes a book, on the left side of the back cover he’ll write down all the lessons he learned, and then on the right side, he’ll try to think of ways he could apply those lessons to his life.
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Notes By Alex Wiec

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