w- Books make for great friends, because the best thinkers of the last few thousand years tell you their nuggets of wisdom. 
You can work in a restaurant eighty hours a week, and you’re not going to get rich. Getting rich is about knowing what to do, who to do it with, and when to do it. It is much more about understanding than purely hard work. Yes, hard work matters, and you can’t skimp on it. But it has to be directed in the right way.
Seek wealth, not money or status. Wealth is having assets that earn while you sleep. Money is how we transfer time and wealth. Status is your place in the social hierarchy.
Ignore people playing status games. They gain status by attacking people playing wealth creation games.
You’re not going to get rich renting out your time. You must own equity—a piece of a business—to gain your financial freedom.
You will get rich by giving society what it wants but does not yet know how to get. At scale.
Play iterated games. All the returns in life, whether in wealth, relationships, or knowledge, come from compound interest.
Pick business partners with high intelligence, energy, and, above all, integrity.
Learn to sell. Learn to build. If you can do both, you will be unstoppable.
“Give me a lever long enough and a place to stand, and I will move the earth.” —Archimedes
Fortunes require leverage. Business leverage comes from capital, people, and products with no marginal cost of replication (code and media).
Code and media are permissionless leverage. They’re the leverage behind the newly rich. You can create software and media that works for you while you sleep.
If you can’t code, write books and blogs, record videos and podcasts.
Reading is faster than listening. Doing is faster than watching.
This is hard. This is why I say it takes decades—I’m not saying it takes decades to execute, but the better part of a decade may be figuring out what you can uniquely provide. 
Wealth is assets that earn while you sleep. Wealth is the factory, the robots, cranking out things. Wealth is the computer program that’s running at night, serving other customers. Wealth is even money in the bank that is being reinvested into other assets, and into other businesses.
Society will pay you for creating things it wants. But society doesn’t yet know how to create those things, because if it did, they wouldn’t need you. They would already be stamped out. Almost everything in your house, in your workplace, and on the street used to be technology at one point in time. There was a time when oil was a technology that made J.D. Rockefeller rich. There was a time when cars were technology that made Henry Ford rich.
Steve Jobs (and his team, of course) figured out society would want smartphones. A computer in their pocket that had all the phone capability times one hundred and was easy to use. So, they figured out how to build it, and then they figured out how to scale it. 
But you can improve sales skills. You can read Robert Cialdini, you can go to a sales training seminar, you can do door-to-door sales. It is brutal but will train you very quickly. You can definitely improve your sales skills.
No one can compete with you on being you. Most of life is a search for who and what needs you the most.
For example, I love to read, and I love technology. I learn very quickly, and I get bored fast. If I had gone into a profession where I was required to tunnel down for twenty years into the same topic, it wouldn’t have worked. I’m in venture investing, which requires me to come up to speed very, very quickly on new technologies (and I’m rewarded for getting bored because new technologies come along). It matches up pretty well with my specific knowledge and skill sets. 
And all of this stuff feels like play to me, but it looks like work to others.
The internet has massively broadened the possible space of careers. Most people haven’t figured this out yet.
“Escape competition through authenticity.” Basically, when you’re competing with people, it’s because you’re copying them. It’s because you’re trying to do the same thing. But every human is different. Don’t copy. 
Who’s going to compete with Joe Rogan or Scott Adams? It’s impossible. Is somebody else going to come along and write a better Dilbert? No.
The most important skill for getting rich is becoming a perpetual learner. You have to know how to learn anything you want to learn. The old model of making money is going to school for four years, getting your degree, and working as a professional for thirty years. But things change fast now. Now, you have to come up to speed on a new profession within nine months, and it’s obsolete four years later. But within those three productive years, you can get very wealthy.
If you go to the library and there’s a book you cannot understand, you have to dig down and say, “What is the foundation required for me to learn this?” Foundations are super important. 
It’s much better to be at 9/10 or 10/10 on foundations than to try and get super deep into things.
It’s because people trust them. They are trusted because the relationships they’ve built and the work they’ve done has compounded.
If you have a sterling reputation and you keep building it for decades upon decades, people will notice.
you’ve worked with somebody for five or ten years and you still enjoy working with them, obviously you trust them, and the little foibles are gone. All the normal negotiations in business relationships can work very simply because you trust each other—you know it will work out.
But at least when it comes to the goal-oriented life, only about 1 percent of the efforts you made paid off.
what you’re trying to do is find the thing you can go all-in on to earn compound interest.
When you’re studying something, like a geography or history class, and you realize you are never going to use the information, drop the class. It’s a waste of time. It’s a waste of your brain energy.
What I’m saying is: when you find the 1 percent of your discipline which will not be wasted, which you’ll be able to invest in for the rest of your life and has meaning to you—go all-in and forget about the rest. 
Embrace accountability and take business risks under your own name. Society will reward you with responsibility, equity, and leverage.
To get rich, you need leverage. Leverage comes in labor, comes in capital, or it can come through code or media.
The people who have the ability to fail in public under their own names actually gain a lot of power.
But when you put your name out there, you take a risk with certain things. You also get to reap the rewards. You get the benefits. 
If you don’t own a piece of a business, you don’t have a path towards financial freedom.
It’s ownership versus wage work. If you are paid for renting out your time, even lawyers and doctors, you can make some money, but you’re not going to make the money that gives you financial freedom. You’re not going to have passive income where a business is earning for you while you are on vacation. 
Without ownership, when you’re sleeping, you’re not earning. When you’re retired, you’re not earning. When you’re on vacation, you’re not earning. And you can’t earn nonlinearly.
If you look at even doctors who get rich (like really rich), it’s because they open a business.
Everybody who really makes money at some point owns a piece of a product, a business, or some IP.
But usually, the real wealth is created by starting your own companies or even by investing.
I only really want to do things for their own sake. That is one definition of art. Whether it’s business, exercise, romance, friendship, whatever, I think the meaning of life is to do things for their own sake. Ironically, when you do things for their own sake, you create your best work.
The year I generated the most wealth for myself was actually the year I worked the least hard and cared the least about the future.
If your curiosity ever leads you to a place where society eventually wants to go, you’ll get paid extremely well. 
You get rewarded by society for giving it what it wants and doesn’t know how to get elsewhere.
A lot of people think you can go to school and study for how to make money, but the reality is, there’s no skill called “business.” 
Think about what product or service society wants but does not yet know how to get. You want to become the person who delivers it and delivers it at scale. That is really the challenge of how to make money.
Now, the problem is becoming good at whatever “it” is. It moves around from generation to generation, but a lot of it happens to be in technology.
The most interesting and the most important form of leverage is the idea of products that have no marginal cost of replication. This is the new form of leverage. This was only invented in the last few hundred years. It started with the printing press. It accelerated with broadcast media, and now it’s really blown up with the internet and with coding. Now, you can multiply your efforts without involving other humans and without needing money from other humans.
Forty hour work weeks are a relic of the Industrial Age. Knowledge workers function like athletes—train and sprint, then rest and reassess.
The higher the creativity component of a profession, the more likely it is to have disconnected inputs and outputs. If you’re looking at professions where your inputs and your outputs are highly connected, it’s going to be very hard to create wealth and make wealth for yourself in that process. 
But in every industry, there is a definition of the builder. In our tech industry, it’s the CTO, it’s the programmer, it’s the software engineer or hardware engineer. But even in the laundry business, it could be the person who’s building the laundry service, who is making the trains run on time, who’s making sure all the clothes end up in the right place at the right time, and so on. The other side of it is sales. Again, selling has a very broad definition. Selling doesn’t necessarily just mean selling to individual customers, but it can mean marketing, it can mean communicating, it can mean recruiting, it can mean raising money, it can mean inspiring people, it could mean doing PR. It’s a broad umbrella category. 
I want a robot, capital, or computer to do the work, but I want to be paid for my judgment. 
I think every human should aspire to being knowledgeable about certain things and being paid for our unique knowledge.
Imagine someone comes along who demonstrably has slightly better judgment. They’re right 85 percent of the time instead of 75 percent. You will pay them $50 million, $100 million, $200 million, whatever it takes, because 10 percent better judgment steering a $100 billion ship is very valuable. CEOs are highly paid because of their leverage. Small differences in judgment and capability really get amplified. 
Demonstrated judgment—credibility around the judgment—is so critical. Warren Buffett wins here because he has massive credibility. He’s been highly accountable. He’s been right over and over in the public domain. He’s built a reputation for very high integrity, so you can trust him. People will throw infinite leverage behind him because of his judgment. Nobody asks him how hard he works. Nobody asks him when he wakes up or when he goes to sleep. They’re like, “Warren, just do your thing.”
We waste our time with short-term thinking and busywork. Warren Buffett spends a year deciding and a day acting. That act lasts decades.
Pay it forward. Karma works because people are consistent. On a long enough timescale, you will attract what you project. But don’t measure—your patience will run out if you count. 
I was working at this tech company called @Home Network, and I told everybody around me—my boss, coworkers, my friends, “In Silicon Valley, all of these other people are starting companies. It looks like they can do it. I’m going to start a company. I’m just here temporarily. I’m an entrepreneur.” …I didn’t actually mean to trick myself into it. It wasn’t a deliberate, calculated thing.
Retirement is when you stop sacrificing today for an imaginary tomorrow. When today is complete, in and of itself, you’re retired.
Well, one way is to have so much money saved that your passive income (without you lifting a finger) covers your burn rate. A second is you just drive your burn rate down to zero—you become a monk.
A third is you’re doing something you love. You enjoy it so much, it’s not about the money. So there are multiple ways to retirement.
Whether in commerce, science, or politics—history remembers the artists.
Art is creativity.
I’m always “working.” It looks like work to others, but it feels like play to me.
Then, there’s luck through persistence, hard work, hustle, and motion. This is when you’re running around creating opportunities. You’re generating a lot of energy, you’re doing a lot to stir things up. It’s almost like mixing a petri dish or mixing a bunch of reagents and seeing what combines. You’re just generating enough force, hustle, and energy for luck to find you.
The last kind of luck is the weirdest, hardest kind, where you build a unique character, a unique brand, a unique mindset, which causes luck to find you.
build your character in a certain way, then your character becomes your destiny.
“Be a maker who makes something interesting people want. Show your craft, practice your craft, and the right people will eventually find you.” 
One thing I figured out later in life is generally (at least in the tech business in Silicon Valley), great people have great outcomes. You just have to be patient. Every person I met at the beginning of my career twenty years ago, where I looked at them and said, “Wow, that guy or gal is super capable—so smart and dedicated”…all of them, almost without exception, became extremely successful. You just had to give them a long enough timescale. It never happens in the timescale you want, or they want, but it does happen. 
Everybody wants to get rich immediately, but the world is an efficient place; immediate doesn’t work. You do have to put in the time.
Most of the time, the person you have to become to make money is a high-anxiety, high-stress, hard-working, competitive person.
You don’t get rich by spending your time to save money. You get rich by saving your time to make money.
Hard work is really overrated. How hard you work matters a lot less in the modern economy. What is underrated? Judgment. Judgment is underrated. 
My definition of wisdom is knowing the long-term consequences of your actions.
In an age of leverage, one correct decision can win everything. Without hard work, you’ll develop neither judgment nor leverage.
The direction you’re heading in matters more than how fast you move, especially with leverage.
I think the smartest people can explain things to a child. If you can’t explain it to a child, then you don’t know it. It’s a common saying and it’s very true.
The really smart thinkers are clear thinkers.
I would rather understand the basics really well than memorize all kinds of complicated concepts I can’t stitch together and can’t rederive from the basics.
The advanced concepts in a field are less proven. We use them to signal insider knowledge, but we’d be better off nailing the basics. 
If you don’t have a day or two every week in your calendar where you’re not always in meetings, and you’re not always busy, then you’re not going to be able to think.
Very smart people tend to be weird since they insist on thinking everything through for themselves.
A contrarian isn’t one who always objects—that’s a conformist of a different sort. A contrarian reasons independently from the ground up and resists pressure to conform.
Facebook redesigns. Twitter redesigns. Personalities, careers, and teams also need redesigns. There are no permanent solutions in a dynamic system.
It’s a very simple concept. Julius Caesar famously said, “If you want it done, then go. And if not, then send.” What he meant was, if you want it done right, then you have to go yourself and do it. When you are the principal, then you are the owner—you care, and you will do a great job.
If you find yourself creating a spreadsheet for a decision with a list of yes’s and no’s, pros and cons, checks and balances, why this is good or bad…forget it. If you cannot decide, the answer is no. 
As you know, most of the gains in life come from suffering in the short term so you can get paid in the long term.
What are the most efficient ways to build new mental models?
Reading science, math, and philosophy one hour per day will likely put you at the upper echelon of human success within seven years.
The genuine love for reading itself, when cultivated, is a superpower.
We live in the age of Alexandria, when every book and every piece of knowledge ever written down is a fingertip away.
The reality is, I don’t actually read much compared to what people think. I probably read one to two hours a day. That puts me in the top .00001 percent.
I think that alone accounts for any material success I’ve had in my life and any intelligence I might have. Real people don’t read an hour a day. Real people, I think, read a minute a day or less. Making it an actual habit is the most important thing.
“As long as I have a book in my hand, I don’t feel like I’m wasting time.” —Charlie Munger
There’s a lot of these, what I would call pseudoscience bestsellers…People are like, “Oh, did you read this book?” I always say yes, but the reality is I read maybe two chapters of it. I got the gist.
If they wrote it to make money, don’t read it.
I have people in my life I consider to be very well-read who aren’t very smart. The reason is because even though they’re very well-read, they read the wrong things in the wrong order.
Then you can just learn. If you’re a perpetual learning machine, you will never be out of options for how to make money.
At any given time, I’m reading somewhere between ten and twenty books. I’m flipping through them.
When you’re young, you have time. You have health, but you have no money. When you’re middle-aged, you have money and you have health, but you have no time. When you’re old, you have money and you have time, but you have no health. So the trifecta is trying to get all three at once. By the time people realize they have enough money, they’ve lost their time and their health. 
The reality is life is a single-player game. You’re born alone. You’re going to die alone. All of your interpretations are alone. All your memories are alone. You’re gone in three generations, and nobody cares. Before you showed up, nobody cared. It’s all single player.
Buffett has a great example when he asks if you want to be the world’s best lover and known as the worst, or the world’s worst lover and known as the best? [paraphrased] in reference to an inner or external scorecard. Exactly right. All the real scorecards are internal.
Once I came to that realization, jealousy faded away because I don’t want to be anybody else. I’m perfectly happy being me. By the way, even that is under my control. To be happy being me. It’s just there are no social rewards for it. 
Outside of math, physics, and chemistry, there isn’t much “settled science.” We’re still arguing over what the optimal diet is.
Walking meetings: • Brain works better • Exercise & sunlight • Shorter, less pleasantries • More dialogue, less monologue • No slides
Time spent undistracted and alone, in self-examination, journaling, meditation, resolves the unresolved and takes us from mentally fat to fit.
Meditation isn’t hard. All you have to do is sit there and do nothing. Just sit down. Close your eyes and say, “I’m just going to give myself a break for an hour. This is my hour off from life. This is the hour I’m not going to do anything.
Insight meditation lets you run your brain in debug mode until you realize you’re just a subroutine in a larger program.
Life is going to play out the way it’s going to play out. There will be some good and some bad. Most of it is actually just up to your interpretation. You’re born, you have a set of sensory experiences, and then you die. How you choose to interpret those experiences is up to you, and different people interpret them in different ways.
Impatience with actions, patience with results.
Number one: read. Read everything you can. And not just the stuff that society tells you is good or even books that I tell you to read. Just read for its own sake. Develop a love for it. Even if you have to read romance novels or paperbacks or comic books. There’s no such thing as junk. Just read it all. Eventually, you’ll guide yourself to the things that you should and want to be reading.
Related to the skill of reading are the skills of mathematics and persuasion. Both skills help you to navigate through the real world.
Having the skill of persuasion is important because if you can influence your fellow human beings, you can get a lot done. I think persuasion is an actual skill. So you can learn it, and it’s not that hard to do so.
Mathematics helps with all the complex and difficult things in life. If you want to make money, if you want to do science, if you want to understand game theory or politics or economics or investments or computers, all of these things have mathematics at the core. It’s a foundational language of nature.
Nature speaks in mathematics. Mathematics is us reverse engineering the language of nature, and we have only scratched the surface. The good news is you don’t have to know a lot of math. You just have to know basic statistics, arithmetic, etc. You should know statistics and probability forwards and backwards and inside out. 
Be aware there are no “adults.” Everyone makes it up as they go along. You have to find your own path, picking, choosing, and discarding as you see fit. Figure it out yourself, and do it. 
hate wasting time. I’m very famous for being rude at parties, events, dinners, where the moment I figure out it’s a waste of my time, I leave immediately.
Value your time. It is all you have. It’s more important than your money. It’s more important than your friends. It is more important than anything. Your time is all you have. Do not waste your time.
This doesn’t mean you can’t relax. As long as you’re doing what you want, it’s not a waste of your time.
But if you’re not spending your time doing what you want, and you’re not earning, and you’re not learning—what the heck are you doing?
People who live far below their means enjoy a freedom that people busy upgrading their lifestyles can’t fathom. 
A taste of freedom can make you unemployable.
There is no purpose to life. Osho said, “It’s like writing on water or building houses of sand.”
I think after this life, it’s very much like before you were born. Remember that? It’s going to be just like that.
Honesty is a core, core, core value. By honesty, I mean I want to be able to just be me. I never want to be in an environment or around people where I have to watch what I say. If I disconnect what I’m thinking from what I’m saying, it creates multiple threads in my mind. I’m no longer in the moment—now I have to be future-planning or past-regretting every time I talk to somebody. Anyone around whom I can’t be fully honest, I don’t want to be around.
All benefits in life come from compound interest, whether in money, relationships, love, health, activities, or habits. I only want to be around people I know I’m going to be around for the rest of my life. I only want to work on things I know have long-term payout.
As investor Charlie Munger says, “To find a worthy mate, be worthy of a worthy mate.” 
The democratization of technology allows anyone to be a creator, entrepreneur, scientist. The future is brighter.
The Tao of Seneca: Practical Letters from a Stoic Master
I always spent money on books. I never viewed that as an expense. That’s an investment to me. 
Reading (learning) is the ultimate meta-skill and can be traded for anything else.
All the real benefits in life come from compound interest.
Earn with your mind, not your time.
Praise specifically, criticize generally. (Warren Buffett)
Mathematics is the language of nature.
Health, love, and your mission, in that order. Nothing else matters.