Normal people believe in one true "right" and "wrong". Geniuses, billionaires, and scientific revolutionaries believe in "contradiction".
Normal people see what everybody else is thinking/doing, and then they adopt that as their own belief of what to think/do. They never think for themselves, they never agitate the crowd, they blindly obey. And this isn't a problem if you're ok with losing.
But, if you want to win, you need to think differently. You need to learn how to transcend binary logic and play with both sides of the spectrum. You need to become idiosyncratic.
Isaac Newton, Einstein, Bill Gates, Warren Buffet, Steve Jobs, Michael Jordan, Mike Tyson, Schumacher — they're all idiosyncratic. They all defied the "sacred conventions", upset the orthodox, and changed the rules of the game.
If you've ever wondered why some people change the world and others just live in it, this video will show you how it starts by fundamentally changing the way you think.
This video shows you how to play with fire!
Check it out and let me know what you think in the comments?
Here's what we cover:
1. The way you achieve something is through its opposite.
2. Want to find an idea? Look for a problem. Want to help yourself? Help others. Want to get money? Give value.
3. Why all things oscillate between two extremes due to the presence of feedback. And why things become their opposite when they're taken to their limits. (understanding this is a superpower).
4. Why most people mimic the crowd and live their lives in a bubble of delusion. And how not to be this person.
5. Why Michael Jordan became basketballs first hybrid offense/defense player, and Mike Tyson became the first heavyweight boxer with featherweight style.
6. The 15 idiosyncratic traits of contradicting winners:
7. Confident and paranoid. Polite and disruptive.
7. Quiet with words, loud with actions. Openminded and stubborn.
8. Being a divergent thinker and a convergent thinker. Passionately attached and rationally detached.
9. Merging the dichotomy of "Work" and "Play" to Work/Play in one.
10. Being extroverted and introverted. Energetic and calm.
11. Extroverted and introverted. Specialist and generalist.
12. Lone wolf and team player. Big picture and forensic details.
13. Working smarter and harder. Student and teacher. Casual and serious.
Check out the video and let me know what you think in the comments below?
Hi, everyone, Sam Ovens here. And in today's video, I want to talk to you about the genius of contradiction. And what I mean specifically with this, is something that I used to struggle with a lot when I was getting started as an entrepreneur. This isn't just for entrepreneurs either, this is really for anyone in life trying to do anything.
What we do as humans, is, we tend to have a bias and we tend to think that there's one right way and one wrong way. We tend to believe that things, basically, exist with like one option here, which is right, and then, another option on the other end of like a continuum, which is wrong.
What we tend to do as we go through life, is, we tend to really just pick a side. A lot of the time, the side that we pick is heavily influenced by the people around us. By our families, our friends, and pretty much, the social group that we spend the most time with. We tend to choose sides, like, our opinion on something will be here or here.
And we tend to think that the other end of the spectrum is wrong, differently wrong. A perfect example of this is, just look at politics. I mean, you've got like Hillary and Trump, and people are really, really polarizing about this. You've got extreme people on this side and extreme people on this side, and both think each other is wrong. And this is something that it's very easy to see with politics because you've got two sides and they're very vocal about it and people seem to have a lot of emotion attached to it. But really, we see this with everything. And once you stick to a side, and once you choose like a binary state on anything like this, then, that's what will really trap you in life when you're making your decisions. Because, you'll think like you building identity, and you'll build a personality, and you'll build yourself based on where you sit on these decisions about everything.
This is a really easy way to snook yourself and get yourself trapped in a corner. What's really interesting is that, if you study like the best athletes, if you study the best geniuses of all time, like Einstein and Newton. And also, if you study the best entrepreneurs, and really if you study any scientific revolution that really has ever occurred in no one history of mankind, then, you realize that, genius is really made from contradiction. People who are really successful in life, they're able to contradict themselves on this thing. This might not be clicking right now, so let me give you a couple of examples. Michael Jordan, famous athlete, he, like best basketball player of all time, right? Back when Michael was playing basketball, players tended to have a bias, they were either offense or defense, right? And so, someone was either a really good defensive player, or a really good offensive player. Or defensive player or offensive player.
And typically, people will just stick to one binary side of this. But Michael Jordan was different, he decided he was going to do both. So he transcended this binary state thing, and he went up and became both. And he was just as good as the best offensive player, and he was just as good as the best defensive player. And that's what made him really good. That's what like, he blew everybody's minds. Everyone was like, "I've never seen someone play basketball like this before." And that's part of what enabled him to win. He broke the paradigm of basketball and how to play basketball. People couldn't predict him, people couldn't understand him. He was idiosyncratic, and he really changed the game, right? And it's because he didn't get trapped in this binary state thinking, he transcended it.
We also see this with Mike Tyson, famous heavyweight boxer. Mike Tyson, he's very interesting if you study him. Boxers, they're typically like heavyweight, or lightweight, right? And it's just based on how heavy you are. Mike Tyson was a big dude, he was extremely muscular. He was very heavy and he was like a heavyweight boxer. And when he punched, his punches had a massive force to them. What's interesting though, is that, heavyweight boxes tended to be slower, they tended to have slower punches and things like that, and slower footwork. And then, lightweight boxers would have much faster footwork and much faster punches, but their punches didn't have as much force. And then, what Mike Tyson did, is, he was a heavyweight boxer that had the speed of a lightweight boxer. So he could move at the speed, and he had the style of a lightweight boxer, but the force of the heavyweight boxer, which made him very dangerous.
So he transcended this binary state thinking, that was present in the boxing world back then. And really, if we trace this through time, through any type of industry or any type of thing, it doesn't even have to do with business. It can be in sports, it can be in science, it can be in philosophy, it can be in anything. We see this is always going on. Why I want to talk to you about this, is because, I used to think like this. I think, most people in the world actually think like this. They choose a side on everything. Like, "Oh, I'm extroverted, and so, I'm going to be outgoing and talking to people and very social." Or, "Oh, I'm introverted, and I should never be going out and talking to people, or because I'm an introvert I should stay in my room," right? And we see people who think that, like, they're really good at social situations and talking to people, but really bad at math and numbers and analysis.
People who are good at sales, but they're not good at like the technical things. And people who are good at the technical things, who don't think they're good at sales, right? We see these things everywhere. Or we might see somebody that's very confident and cocky. And then, we might see someone who's very shy and timid and paranoid. What I'm saying is that, we pretty much choose a side, when it comes to everything in our life, and this is not the way to do it, you do not succeed by doing this. You have to learn to transcend the binary state thinking, and you have to really learn to play with both sides depending on the situation in the environment. It's a lot easier said than done. It took me a long time to figure out how to do this, but when I did, it totally changed everything for me and I got so much more innovative. I could solve so many more problems and I could really do a lot of things that I never thought I could do, because, I got myself out of that limited thinking, which would always lead me into a corner, where I'd be like, "Oh, I can't do anything anymore." This is the way out.
And for a lot of entrepreneurs, this will totally change the game field, it will totally change your life. What I'm going to do in this video today, is, I'm going to run through some examples of this, some common examples. I've got 15 of them to share with you. Then, what I'm going to show you how to do, is really how to take some actions starting immediately, so that you can become more non binary when it comes to your thinking, and really more innovative, and really, change the game, whatever that game is that you're playing. The way I really learned this, is that, the way to achieve anything, is through its opposite. A lot of people when they're looking for something, a lot of people when they're looking for what the right thing to do is, they are out there looking for the right thing, and they can't find it.
But, really, a great way to find what's right, is to invert right, and we get wrong. Then, we can go out and look for what's wrong. When we've really found what's wrong, then we know what's right, because we just invert wrong, then we can see what's right. So this is a real good trick to dealing with reality. I've used it for a long time, and in this video, I'm attempting to put it into words, which is quite hard. But I've used this trick for a long time, and it's helped me a lot. So let me give you an example, like a practical real everyday example. A lot of people, they think, to start a business, they need a good idea. They need that genius breakthrough idea that they hear about people having in the shower and things, right? Well, I went looking for the right idea, and I couldn't even find the right idea.
And then, someone told me, "Sam, you don't go looking for ideas, you go looking for problems." And I thought, "Oh my god, holy shit." My always looks like mind blowing. I was like, "That makes perfect sense. You don't go looking for ideas, you go looking for problems." And so, most people, when I ask them, they say they want to be an entrepreneur. And I'm like, "Well, why aren't you an entrepreneur?" And they say, "Because I don't have a good idea yet." Well, you don't need an idea, that's stupid. So on this side, we have the idea, and over here, we have the problem. Most people are over here looking for an idea, stop looking for ideas. You don't find ideas, people don't just have great ideas sitting in them for you to execute on. But what they do have, is people are pretty aware of their problems. So go out looking for problems.
And then, when you find a problem, the solution to that problem is your idea. We just do the same trick again. And then, another one is, if you want to help yourself. A lot of people, they want to make more money, because, who doesn't? Money can be helpful. It's not fun being poor, and money can really remove a lot of worry from your life. And so, a lot of people they want to improve their lives, they want to improve their families lives, and they want to make more money for themselves. And that's fine. But the way people go about it, is really backwards. And so, this next example, and I won't write all these down because it will take too long, I'll be respectful of your time. Most people, they go out trying to help themselves. They want to start a business so they can make more money for them. And when you go out into the world, and your intention is to try and make more money for yourself, then, you're looking at everything the wrong way, and you're not really going to be able to start a business or make money for yourself.
Instead, what you try to do, is you go out, and you try to help other people. So if you want, the best way to help yourself, is to help others. And by helping others, you are helping yourself. We're achieving something through its opposite again. This trick works for a lot of things. And then, if you want to make a lot of money, how do you get to collect a lot of money from people? How do people pay you a lot of money? They don't just pay you money for nothing, and you don't just go out and try to steal it off people, because it's illegal. So how do you get people to pay you money? Well, why do people exchange money? What is money traded for? If money flows that way, what flows the opposite way? In a transaction where money's flowing there, what is flowing back the other way? What is the inverse flow?
Well, it's valued, people pay money for value. So, if you want to be on the receiving end of money, you need to be on the giving end of value. We can use this trick again, you want to receive money, you got to give value. And how do we provide value? Well, we solve a problem for someone, we help other people. So, the way to help yourself is by helping other people. The way to receive money, is to give value. If you want to find an idea, you look for a problem. This is a cool trick, it's very simple, and it can apply to everything. And another one is, if you want to succeed long term, if you want to be successful and healthy and all of that long term, then, what you have to do, if you want to win long term, then, you have to sacrifice short term. And people are very, very bad at this. If you want to be making a lot of money in the future and be very smart in the future, then, right now, you have to learn, and you have to do a lot of hard work.
If you want to have a lot of freedom later, you've got to not have a lot of freedom now. And, freedom really comes from discipline. So, if you want to be really free, and that means like, have a lot of money, have a lot of available time and a lot of options and truly be free, then, that means that by choice, you have to not be free. You have to impose strict discipline on yourself. And by being disciplined, then, we unlock freedom. And so, people don't understand this one, either. They think that, they really want freedom, so then, day to day, what they're doing is, they're like, "Oh, well, I could do this. I could read this book, or I could start working on my business, or I could watch this Netflix episode." And they're like, "Well, this doesn't sound very free. I'm seeking freedom, so therefore, I should watch this Netflix thing." And then long term, what they get, is not freedom. They get no freedom at all. They get chained, and they get caged.
And so, you can see, the way to achieve something is through its opposite. And if you want to succeed long term, you've got to sacrifice short term. If you want to make a lot of money, if you want to have a lot of money in your bank account, so that you can buy lots of things, then, you've got to not spend any money and not by any things in the short term. For example, if you want to feel good, like long term, then, in the short term, you have to not feel so good. For example, going to the gym, exercising, it makes you feel like not the best when you're really exhausted and puffed, but, the feeling after that, is really good. And if you're eating some food that isn't the tastiest right now, well, you'll feel a lot better because you're healthy and happy later on. So, we're always trading these things, and you've got to learn how to play with this. And really, this happens with everything in the world.
If we look at anything in the world, it basically resonates like this, and along here, this would probably be the objective line, this is what the truth really is. And then, what happens, is perception of things like oscillate between two extremes. And over here, let's say this is, let me give you an example of this, because, this happens a lot. In the weightlifting, I'll use the bodybuilding weightlifting kind of market. At one point in time, people thought that you had to eat a lot, so, I'll just put eat a lot, and you had to lift really heavy weights. Everyone thought that, if you wanted to really succeed at bodybuilding, you had to eat until you couldn't eat anymore, and you were to lift very low set, very low reps of really extremely heavy weights. And you had to have a lot of supplements and all of the stuff. And what happened is the prevailing bias in the market continued out to an extreme point, where it had gone beyond where it should have rationally gone.
And then what happens is, that will come back, it will regress, and it will go the other way, it'll invert. Then what we saw, is people saying that you basically, what was the name of this diet? But people were basically saying, you eat basically, you eat lesser. People started coming out and saying, well, the way to do it is, you want to do like fasting, you don't even want to eat anything for breakfast. And you want to have your first meal at like 12 o'clock, and you actually don't need to work out like that intensely and you don't need to take any supplements at all. And then, over here, we used to see a lot of people saying, you want to just lift weights and use very rigid static kind of motions. Then here, we saw the rise of like CrossFit, and basically people saying, you can lift lightweights very fast and you can do all of these different things. So, if we were to look at traditional bodybuilding and then CrossFit, they're very different.
If we were to look at traditional bodybuilding diets, and now what people are saying great bodybuilding diets are, they're exact opposites. And we see this happen all the time, if we look at the presidency in the United States, Obama was like, he was very careful with his words. He always wore a suit, and he was the epitome of a very formal politically correct president, right? Very serious, very formal, very proper. And now what we have is Donald Trump, and he's the exact opposite of that, he's the antithesis of it. And so, we see this go like, it resonates along that same kind of path. This happens in business, it happens in industries, it happens with products, it happens with everything. Once something develops towards extreme, it becomes its opposite. This is what we call a paradox. Why this happens, is because most people, they base their beliefs like, "Which side should I be on this equation? Should I be over here? Or should I be over here?
Most people, they make their decision on this based on what most other people think. So the biggest influence in a belief is what others believe for most people, right? And it's just like the stock market works, one of the biggest influence of a price of the stock, is the price of the stock. So if a price of the stock is going up, then, more people invest in that stock, and it continues to go up. The reason why it continues to go up, is because more people believe it continues to go up. And then it does, it's a self fulfilling prophecy. And then, the more people are talking about it, the more people are buying it, and then the more it's going up. And then the people who bought in at a lower point, now it's going up a lot. They think, "I knew it, I was right." And so, we get this massive prevailing bias like this. And it's because, you've got to learn how these things happen. These things happen because most people base their belief on what other people believe.
Most people believe that, if everyone's believing it, then it must be true. And if everyone's believing it, then I should believe it. Once something starts going out like this, everyone gets on the bandwagon. And then when too many people are doing it, it goes beyond what's rational, and it gets to a stupid delusional point. And then, it tips, and then, it goes down the other side, right? And almost nobody can do this. Like, I've got my company, consulting.com, we've got 20,000 customers and I've done like almost 2,000 hours of questions and answers. I've done a lot of mastermind live events with my top students. And I've also done like 500 job interviews looking for really smart people. And I can tell you that, pretty much, only one or two people I've ever met in my life, know how to think like this, it's extremely rare. And those two people that think like this, they're the most successful people I know.
So, this is a very rare skill, being able to see this and being able to watch patterns unfold, and being able to notice like prevailing biases in the market, and this happens with the stock market. If you look at the stock market historically, it always goes up to a state of out here, there's basically, like too much confidence, and then here, there's too much pessimism. The market is very delusional because really what the market is, all the stock market is, is it's a tracking of human perception of what something is worth. Now, it doesn't mean that what people think it's worth is what it's worth, that is not what it's worth. But, that's what people think it's worth, because people are not the best at thinking about these things. And so, with the stock market, we see it go in these trends as well. Like it'll go right up to where there's a lot of confidence, and then, when there's a lot of confidence, everyone's investing, all the stocks are going up. And everyone thinks, "Oh, it's awesome. We're making all this money, and this more, more, more, more, more."
And then, boom, explosion, and then it comes down and tips back the other way. And then, the markets is too pessimistic. And no one wants to invest, because everyone's like, "Oh, the market is down, it's not the right time to invest." But people are stupid. The worst time to invest is when things are hot. The best time to invest is when the blood is running. I mean, when the streets are running red with blood, when everyone is terrified and the last thing in the world they would ever do is touch a stock, that is when I want to touch a stock. When everyone is buying stocks and the market is worrying, this is when I am not going to touch a stock even with a stick. Same with housing market, same with anything. If everyone's doing it, then, it has a high chance of being wrong and delusional. And really, objectivity and the truth lies somewhere in the middle of these two extremes. The market is only ever at these points, at rare moments in time. And that's where the equilibrium would exist.
At that point in time, the true objective value of the assets, is the price of the stock, and that is almost never where it is. Most of the time, people are too pessimistic, they think it's worth less than what it is, or they're too optimistic and they think it's worth more than what it is, right? You've got to understand that people are mostly delusional and almost never right. And so, you've got to learn to spot these things. So when we know people are mostly delusional and almost never right, then, why would we base our beliefs on what most people think? It doesn't make any sense. This is how you've got to learn to think. This is how Warren Buffett thinks, this is how Carl Icahn thinks, this is how Peter Teo thinks, this is how Steve Jobs thinks, Bill Gates. This is how billionaires think, this is the trick to it. It's being able to look at things and form an objective point of view for yourself based on your own analysis, even if it's at complete odds with what most other people think.
And it's hard to do, it's hard to be idiosyncratic, it's hard to have conviction on something that everyone else thinks is stupid and wrong. Because they're going to call you names, they're going to attack you, outright attack you like verbally, right? Because they're going to think you're crazy. But you've got to just stand firm in those beliefs, and the people who do that, they tip things and they're the ones that change the world, and the they're ones that make a lot of money and have a lot of reward. Now, what I said I was going to do, is tell you like 15 different things that you need to learn to transcend this binary state thing, right? So, you want to be confident, but also paranoid. One side of this we've got confidence, the other side of this we've got paranoia. I've seen a lot of people who are too cocky, get their asses kicked. And you don't want to be too cocky, you don't want to be out there thinking, "I'm the best, no one can beat me," all of this stuff. Because you'll get your ass kicked, Right?
Instead, and on the opposite side of that spectrum, you don't want to be too pessimistic and paranoid and anxious. You can't think, "Oh, I'm so useless. I suck so bad, no one is ever going to want to work with me." Both sides of this are wrong. What you have to learn to be, is confident in yourself but not cocky. And also, extremely paranoid. And what's funny is that, I've always been quite paranoid about things. I always worry about things, I always worried that my products aren't good enough, my customer support it's not good enough, nothing's good enough, and I'm constantly terrified of all of these things. But what's interesting is that, by thinking I'm never good enough and nothing I do is good enough, I've actually created some really good stuff and gotten pretty good at it. What's interesting about that is the way I got to a point where I was very confident and where a lot of people thought that my trainings were some of the best, is by thinking that I was not. That's how you do it.
There's the saying, it's like a Zen saying or something, it's like, "The father who thinks he's a good father, isn't a good father." And there's some fathers that think, "I'm a good father," and they're proud of being a good father, they'll probably write on their Facebook headline, like, "Extremely good father." This is not a good thing. Because, once you think you're it, you stop trying to improve, right? And so, you don't want to think you're it, you always want to think that you're not there, so that you keep working on it, and you stay aware of it, and you keep practicing and improving. And by never thinking that you're enough, you are, so that's a trick. And so, really successful people, like billionaires, the world's best athletes, they're extremely confident, they know they're good. Even when they're the best in the world, they know they're good at it. But I can tell you that they are terrified of who's coming up behind them, and they're terrified of someone doing to them what they did to everyone else.
And so, they live in terror and in constant states of paranoia, and that's actually a good thing because it keeps them working on their craft and it keeps them sharp, and they never get complacent. And so, this is important, you don't want to feel extremely confident, when you don't have any skill, that's called stupidity. You want to worry about your skill permanently, you want to worry about your product, your service, your company, all the time. And through doing that, you will gain the confidence and that's how it works. Another one is polite and disruptive. A lot of people, they think someone's either just a real asshole and they always causing a ruckus, or, let's say that it's over here. Or, they're very polite and very friendly and never cause any issues. Well, to be successful at anything, you need to be both polite and disruptive. You need to be both, right? And a perfect example of this is, sometimes, to really help someone improve, you have to give them some harsh, ruthless feedback.
Like, "Hey, man, this work sucks. This is the worst work I've ever seen in my life. You didn't try at all with this, and this is horrible." You're cutting someone down by doing that. But when you do that to them, they go home and they start becoming introspective. They look inside themselves and they start really analyzing themselves and questioning themselves. And then, from that comes personal growth, and the person improves. And then, when the person improves, their life is better and everything becomes better, and they are actually thankful for you and what you did. So in the short term, they think you're an asshole, and the long term, they really appreciate you for challenging them and pushing them. To be a good leader and to be a good entrepreneur and to be good at anything, you have to be both polite and disruptive. So I never attack a person, ever, I'll never do personal attacks.
I won't abuse someone because of what they look like, or what they're wearing or anything like that, that's stupid. There's no place for that in my company at all. But, what I will do is a tech someone's ideas and attack the logic, and I will attack their work and the quality of their work, and their standards and their work ethic, I will ruthlessly attack that. And if someone does not try their best with that stuff, I will terrorize them. But, I will never attack someone personally. I'm polite and friendly, but I'm also pretty ruthless and disruptive. You've got to learn to be this as well, you can't think that you're always just this asshole person, or you're a polite, nice, friendly, never rocking the boat type person, you've got to be both. And other one is words and actions, all right? What's interesting about this one, is that the people who take the most action and get the most done and get the best result, they're not big talkers. There's doers over here and there's talkers over here.
Doers are never really talkers, talkers a very rarely doers. What you want to do on this one is, you've got to do both. You can't just purely do and never talk, and you can't talk and never do. You can't get trapped on the sides. You've got to be moving along this thing based on the scenario and the environment you're in. So in some situations, I've got to talk, for example, this video. I've got to make this video for you, I've got to talk and be extroverted, and I would prefer to be honest to just keep working within my company but this is a necessary thing I have to do, to achieve my goal, which is trying to educate people, help them start their own businesses and learn things and become successful. So, in this moment, I have to choose to be more talkative, but once this video is done, I'll flip right back to being silent and doing work. You've got to learn to play with this.
And then, also, the person who has the most interesting things to talk about, and has the best words to listen to, is the person who has been doing the most action. Because through action, you gain insight. And through action, you actually learn things that other people want to know. And then, your words are more valuable and people want to hear you speak. But if you're just a speaker, this is why I hate thought leaders and also public speakers, because all they do is tour around speaking. When the hell are they doing anything? How do they know what they're talking about? This is this thing again. And then, another one is open minded and stubborn. You've got to be open minded when someone suggests to you ideas, you can't think, "No, no, no, I always know what I'm doing and this is stupid." But at the same time, you have to be open minded to things, and you have to be willing to change, and you have to be willing to admit you're wrong and take different points of view in. But at the same time, you also have to be stubborn.
And I see people that are way too open minded, and they're just doing loops, they're just going, loop, loop, loop, loop, loop, loop, loop, because they're always taking a new ideas and new perspectives, they never get anything done. And then, I see people who are too stubborn and they just stay on their path, and they never move, they never deviate, they never listen to anyone, and they just go off a cliff. And, none of these sides are right, you have to do both. You have to be open minded and stubborn. Billionaires and really successful people, they like this. They will totally change the tact and listen to other people, but at the same time, when they have high conviction, they will be relentlessly stubborn. They won't listen to anything, they'll block it all out, and they will just execute. But then, they come back and they're open minded again, and back into execution. They play with both sides.
And another one is divergent and convergent thinking. People tend to have a bias for this. Like, if someone is thinking about something, some people, their options fan out like this, in an array. And they start thinking of all the possible options, right? This is divergent thinking, when you're thinking starts narrow and just fans out and you get this array of different possibilities that never ends. And so, this is an important skill. Let's say we've got this on one side, and then, on the other side, we have convergent thinking. And that is when someone starts bigger, and they collapse it down. And this is a person who can take lots of options, and then, sort through them, consolidate them, and boom, find what to do, find an action. Both of these are wrong. Like, if you're a divergent thinker, you'll just keep coming up with options and possibilities and options and possibilities.
And on the Myers Briggs test, if you're a pay at the end, if you've got pay at the end, especially if you have an in on the second letter and a pay on the last letter, then, you're going to be a divergent thinking and it's going to be a problem. And then, people who have an S and a J, then, you're going to be a convergent thinker, and it's going to be a problem. Instead, you have to learn how to be both. You have to learn that, when you're in a scenario where people think you've only got one or two options, you have to deploy divergent thinking. To start thinking of different things that other people haven't thought about. You have to start spanning out and thinking of other options. But then once you've got all these options, you then have to switch, and you have to collapse them back down because you need to make a decision. You need to act and you need to form a conviction, and you need to do both.
So really, the best one is to start by going out, looking at all the options, and then, once you've got them, to start sorting them and coming out into one specific action. You have to be both of these things. This is very hard for people to get because they think someone is either good or bad, and they think someone is either, like a doer, or talker, or an introvert, or an extrovert, or an ideas man, or executer, right? It's all bullshit. If you're one of these things, then, it's not good enough. You have to transcend the stupid dichotomy, and you have to transcend this binary state thinking, and you have to learn to think differently. This is a fundamental change in your brain. Once this occurs, it'll be like a light in your mind because it's going to completely change the entire way. Every piece of information is stored in your brain, it's going to change everything.
Because, it's how you've organized your mind, it's how you've organize your view and your paradigm of the world that you live in. It's how you have made all of your decisions, chosen all of your friends, it's how you've done everything. And if you're going to go and screw with something at a really low level in your mind's operating system. If you're going to switch from binary state logic to something like this, it's going to blow your mind. So it's hard to make this change, but when you do, it will change everything for you. Another thing is passionate and rational. A few of people are too emotionally invested, they become irrational, they start making stupid decisions because their emotions get involved. But, people who are to rational and don't have any emotion, they're not able to really get into it and see things properly. So, you need to be both, you need to be passionate and driven and motivated, but at the same time, you need to be rational.
You can't let your emotions make you make stupid decisions, and you can't let your logic and your rationale stop you from really feeling the motivation and the emotions attached to your work, right? You have to learn to play with both. Another one is energetic and calm. There's some people out there who are just got way too much energy, they can't sit down, they can't bloody stop, you can't sit them down. They're like a neurotic, ADD, hyperactive, psychopath on like 10 Monster Energy drinks, right? This person is bad news. It's like a bull in a China shop, but really it's like a bull on social media. And then, the other type is someone who's extremely calm, and they're just so zenned out and so calm. And like, they're doing their meditation and they're sipping the tea and they're wearing the yoga pants, and they're so calm, and they don't do anything because they're so fucking calm.
They don't want to disrupt the calmness, so they just don't do anything. They're like those Yogis and Buddhas, that just ... but I said Buddhas, but the people who are so into yoga, and so into meditation and all that, that they just go into the mountains, and then, they just sit there and meditate for the rest of their lives. That is an extreme side of calmness, the opposite of that would be someone who just is relentlessly energetic. Both of these are wrong. You need to be both, you need to be able to be calm when everyone else around you is losing their minds. But at the same time, when everyone is too zenned and out, you need to be amped up and you need to get them charged up. It's like, when your team is like this, and they need to be like this, you become this opposite. And then, when your team is like this, and you need them to be like this, you become this, right? It's like, you are able to play both sides.
And depending on the situation, and depending on what charges needed in the situation, then, you'll be that charge. And so, you're able to play with this. Another one is work and play. So, a lot of people think, oh, well, like, there is play, which is fun and enjoyment. And then, there's work. This is one of the dumbest thing I've ever seen in my life. People ask me all the time, "Sam, why do you work so much? Don't you want to enjoy life?" Or, "Sam, why do you keep working? Don't you want to travel the world and do something fun?" And why these people ask me this question, is because they believe in this stupid dichotomy thing. So they think that fun cannot exist, when one is working. And then, when play exists, it cannot exist when someone is working. And when someone's working, I don't even know if I said that right.
But, it's either one or the other, right? It's a dichotomy and it's a binary state thing. What you need to learn to do is, you need to merge these things. You need to make work play. You need to have as much fun as you would, socializing with friends, going out on the weekends, partying, traveling around the world. You need to make your work, the stuff you do day to day, at your desk, on your computer, that needs to be as enjoyable or more enjoyable than anything you could possibly want to do. Because if it's not, you're always going to be sitting there thinking, "When will this end?" And so, what you'll find is, if you ... in Michael Jordan documentary, it's called, Michael Jordan to the Max, it's good documentary. They asked him at the start, "Michael, what's the secret to being the best basketball player in the world?" And he says, "The secret is to fall in love with the game." And it's true.
You need to fall in love with your work, you need to make work play. And until you do that, you'll never be great, because it's a chore. And this is what you need to do, you need to transcend this binary state logical. If it's this, then, it's not that. And if it's that, then, it's not this. This is stupid. Your mind can't use this stupid binary logic when it comes to anything. You've got to transcend it, you've got to merge these things. And when you do that, you will make leaps and bounds of progress. I remember when I always used to think that work wasn't play, I'd always be counting down the clock until I got to go out and hang out with my friends, or go and do something fun, and I never really succeeded that well at my work. But then, when I really got into it and started falling in love with my work and would rather work than go out and socialize with friends and things, I got really good.
And guess what? I started having a whole lot more fun because, for most people, fun only exists like two days of the week. Two out of seven, right? But, I made work exist like every day of the week. Every day became a Saturday when I did this. Now, another one is introvert and extrovert. People think, "I'm an introvert, I can't talk to people ever." And then, there's people who are extroverts and they're like, "I'm an extrovert. I cannot be left by myself and I cannot sit down and do something without talking." Both of these people are wrong. If you're just a talker, then you're just basically a big mouth. And, if all you are is an introvert that won't talk to anyone, then, you're basically an unrecognized, unusable source of talent. Because you've got all this talent, but you can't work effectively with others. You can't plug to like API with other people and pass information along for a system to work. For a system to function, it has to have inflows and outflows of information.
And if you are so introverted that you can't pass out these flows of information, then, you're useless. You're just a siloed source of talent that's unusable. And I used to be this, I used to know a shit load of stuff, and know how to do all of these different things, but no one knew that I knew how to do all of these things. And I couldn't make use of the things I knew how to do because I was too afraid to talk to anybody. So, kind of pretty stupid. But on the other end of the spectrum, you get these people who are out there talking to so many people, and all of these people want to work with them, and all of this stuff, they've got so many connections, but they don't know how to do anything of value. And you have to be both. I had to learn this, because I'm an introvert, and I had to learn. Introvert is my natural state, but I can flip into extrovert if I have to.
If I need to make a video and put it out on the internet, I'll do it, right? And if I need to talk to people, I'll do it. Do sales calls, I'll do it. Go and speak people, I'll do it. I can force myself into an extrovert state, and I can do it and get it done. And I can also fall back into introvert, you need to learn to play on both sides. And really, what it is, it's like an ambivert, it's like both. Another one is a specialist and a generalist. Someone who is a genius at one thing in specific, and someone who knows a little bit about lots of stuff. Both of these are wrong. What you need is both. You need to be T shaped, you need to know a little bit about a lot of stuff and you need to know a lot on something specific. You need to have deep knowledge on something, you need to be a true subject matter expert on something. But then, you need to have broad knowledge, so that you know how to integrate this with other things.
And you know how to consider different scenarios with other things. Because, let me put it this way, if someone's just a genius brain surgeon, but they don't understand the heart and the lungs and the other components of the body. And if they don't understand other professions like the anesthetist that is working with them as well. If they don't understand anything about these other functions of the body and these other functions of doctors that are helping them with the procedure, then, they're going to cause harm. Because they only have knowledge of their thing. Just like an accountant who doesn't understand business, they will see just any expense is bad and any inflow of cash is good. But, sometimes, expenses are good, they're investments. And sometimes, making a loss is strategic, right? Like Amazon made a loss pretty much every year they've been in business but one. And at one point, they were the most successful, most valuable company on planet Earth ever.
So, imagine a normal accountant looking at it, and thinking, "Oh, this Amazon business, they're dumb because they're making a loss." Stupid accountant, you need to understand this. You can use expenses as investments. You can use losses as a strategy. Like one of the Bay resources best strategies, is going underwater with bigger tanks than everybody else. And by tanks, I mean, supplies of cash, than everybody else, and he doesn't come up for air until everyone else is dead. That is one of his best signature moves. He will drop prices to the point where everyone else cannot make any money, and he will hold it there until everyone runs out of money and ceases to exist. And then, he'll make sure everything's gone. And then, he will come up and take a breath of you, right? And so, making losses can be a strategic move, it can be a checkmate.
An accountant who only knows P&Ls and balance sheets will just not understand this, but an accountant who has a broader knowledge of business and strategy, and decision making and all of these different things, they're going to see what's going on. They're able to interconnect this one digit on the P&L and the balance sheet with a whole other broad spectrum of objects and metrics, and see how they all interconnect. So, you need to be a generalist and a specialist. Another one is, you need to be a lone wolf and a team player. There's a lot of times in life and in business where you just have to lock yourself in your room, turn your phone off, close the windows, lock the doors, and just don't go on social media, and just work 12 hours a day, seven days a week, until you just get that thing done. You've got to shut out everything, and you've got to go full solo, lone wolf, no one talk to me until I get this done. You got to go off the radar. You've got to have that skill.
A lot of people can't do that, they just shut down. But you have to have that skill. It is a great tool to get yourself out of different situations or to just beat other people, because you know they can't do that, they don't have it in them. And at the same time though, you can't always be that person. Because to succeed in business and or in anything in the world, you've got to interface with other people. You've got to talk to your team, you've got to communicate with your team, you also have to communicate with your customers. People have to know you exist and you have to interface with different things to make your talent useful. So, you have to be a lone wolf and a team player, and know when to be both. And you also need to be big picture and detail oriented. So these people who are so zoomed in on to the detail, that they just cannot see anything else, they're obsessed about this little microscopic detail.
And what this person fails to see is the big picture. And then, this big picture people who are like visionaries and thought leaders, and all these other words to describe nothing. And they just see all of these big picture things and all of these abstractions and nothing that they're really saying is tied to anything concrete or anything specific. But they're just broad visionary thinkers. And both of these people are wrong, you need to be both. You need to be big picture so that you can see the whole and think long term and think at a macro level. But then, you also need to drill down into the microscopic detail, down to a lesser or a word, or why is that number like that? Why is that decimal point like that? You have to be both big picture and detail oriented, and every single layer in between. It's a rare skill, I almost never see anyone like this. But if you make yourself like this, you will be like a unstoppable force. There's almost no one like this.
And another one is some people think that to succeed, you should work smarter, and some people think that you should work harder. And the people who say, "Oh, why do you work so hard Sam? You should just work smarter, Tim Ferriss only works four hours a week. Haven't you read The 4-Hour Workweek? Why do you work like 80 hours a week?" And these people are stupid, they don't understand. And then these people who believe in working smarter and the four hour workweek thing, and then, they just work like 100 hours a week and grind themselves to, they're completely burnt out. And they think the people who are trying to work smarter, they think they're stupid. And these people here think the work hard people are stupid. Both of these people are stupid. You've got to learn to be both. I like, one of my strategies is to work smarter than everybody, but also, work harder than everybody and for longer than everybody. So use all three.
I want to make sure that, when I'm working, I'm working the smartest I possibly can and using the most leverage I possibly can. But I also want to make sure that I work more intensely and more focused than everyone else so that, when I am working, it's worth more, each hour is worth more. And then, I'm applying a force multiplier with strategy and working smarter, and using systems and tools. And then, I want to make sure that I'm working longer. So, harder, more intensely, longer and smarter, all at the same time. That is what you want to do. And another thing I see all the time is, student, teacher. Oh, a teacher knows everything, they're supposed to be the ones teaching everyone. Teacher knows everything, right? If teacher is learning something, teacher doesn't know what they're doing, teacher should know everything. And a teachers isn't student, and a student isn't a teacher.
So a students should never talk back to the teacher. And a teacher should know everything, so a student should never even question a teacher. And a student is never a teacher. So a student shouldn't tell other people what to do, if they ask, that should just be given to the teacher. Stupid, stupidity. The way to achieve anything is by through its opposite. How I became a teacher of people in my courses, is by being a really good student. The best student becomes the teacher, but only for as long as they remain a student. The only reason why I've got anything of any value for anybody to listen to, is because I'm a student and I will always be a student for ever. And I'm always learning, I know nowhere near enough. I need to know so much more and I'm constantly learning, and constantly improving. And it just so happens that through this, I have some things that can help some people, and then I teach them.
But, if I was to just think I'm a teacher now I know everything, then, it would only last for a couple of months, and then, my information wouldn't work anymore. This is the stupid thing we have our education system, teachers just become teachers and they like, "I know everything." And then, the students come in and they're like, "I know nothing." And these two binary state things, it's bullshit. You want to always be a student. And when you do that, you'll sometimes be a teacher. So when you're working at your company, sometimes you might be teaching someone, and sometimes you might be learning. Even Jeff Bezos and Warren Buffett, they're still students. You're never done with learning. And the person who is the biggest learner, is the best teacher. This is just how it works.
And another one I see all the time, is like casual and serious, or playful and serious. A lot of people think that if you're wearing a T shirt and shorts, and let's say, or hears a little bit too long on something, they think that, "Oh, this person doesn't know anything about business. Look how non serious they are." Or, "Oh my god, that person said the swear word," Or this mindless crap. Just because someone is wearing casual clothes, that has nothing to do with anything. And what you'll find is the best, the most successful people in the world, they don't dress the best. Because, someone who is worried about how they look at the job, and then, spends hours picking out their wardrobe and what they're going to wear and making sure that it was fashionable. And spending hours doing the hair and finding the latest shoes. But, when they're working on that, they're not working on their work.
So, the people who are dressed the best, and look the best and are most immaculately presented, run. Unless you're getting advice from them about how to look like they do. Because, the best dressed person in the business, is the person who has been spending time thinking about that, instead of about the business. And so, I used to do this. I used to think, "Oh, if I'm to be taken seriously as an entrepreneur and a businessman, I must wear a suit, and I must look very formal and proper, have a business card," and all this of shit, right? So I did it all. And then, it was a lot of effort and I put a lot of my thought into it. And still, no one really took me that serious, and I always felt like, "What the hell am I doing wearing this stupid stuff?" And then, I just let it go and I just focused on actually, "Instead of trying to look like I know what I'm doing, hey, why don't I just try and actually know what the fuck I'm doing, right? Instead of trying to look like it, why not be it?"
And then, when I became it, it didn't matter what I looked like, because no one cares what you look like, they only care about the results you get for them. And so, this whole casual, formal bullshit, this whole thing that you have to wear, suits and all of that crap. What I find real crazy and messed up, is that at a company like Bank of America, they make their employees wear suits and ties and leather shoes and all of this. They make them come to the office and work in a cubicle. And they make them do all of this, they give them business cards and they even call them like Senior Executive Consultant of Support, right? Like when they're customer support rep. So they give them fancy titles, they make them, they force them to wear fancy clothes. And they force them to come into the office. And what they do, is they put all of their effort and attention into the things that do not matter, and in the things that do matter.
Like, hey, this person is going to be working on a laptop like all day, every day, this is the tool for the job. They just give them a real piece of shit laptop, right? They just give them some real old crusty Microsoft thing, that's fans are going, it needs to be plugged into the power all the time. "Hey, let's make them wear all of those fancy clothes, give them this title and all of this. But they [inaudible], no screw it, let's just give them something shit. And then the software, just give them real bad software, like Microsoft Office, Internet Explorer, little lock down what they can do on it. Let's do all of this." So what they do is, they focus, they put all of their focus on the objects, and none of their focus on the actual things that matter. They focus on image and not what it is, not substance, image. There's image and there's substance. And a lot of people I see, they focus on image.
"What do I look like? What do people think of me?" They're trying to build an image of themselves to succeed. This is not the way to do it. Forget about your image, focus on what it actually is. Because over the long term, people will figure out what it actually is. And the people that work on image, get caught for not being what ... they get caught, they become the emperor with no clothes and they get revealed for who they are with having no clothes on. But the people who focus on the substance, sometimes people criticize them and think, "This person doesn't know what they're doing, and this other person is real famous, they're way better than him." It doesn't matter, with time, the market learns, and then, they're like, "Oh shit, I didn't see that." The time is the Grim Reaper of the market, and it always creates delusions.
And so, don't worry, if someone is beating you by perception right now in the short term because they're out there standing in front of all these cars and parading around on the internet. Don't worry about that, that person will get crushed. It just takes time. You don't even have to do anything, that's the best thing. Because, the Grim Reaper, the time mechanism, that will come and hunt them down. You just got to just wait it out. And then, if you've been focusing on what matters, then, you'll win. And Jeff Bezos has this great saying, a lot of people used to think Amazon was like a scam, and the Amazon was a shitty business and that they didn't know what they're doing, because they were losing money and all this. And Jeff Bezos has based a lot of his financial principles of Benjamin Graham, who Warren Buffett learned from. Buffett read Graham's book called the Intelligent Investor, and then, Buffett later applied to go and learn from Graham as in his class, because he was a university lecturer.
Buffett was Benjamin Graham's best student, and that's where Buffett learned business from. He became a value investor. And then, Bezos, drunk from that same source. And what Bezos said is, this is a quote from Buffett and Bezos and it originated with Benjamin Graham in the Intelligent Investor, which is a good book if you want to read it. And he said, "In the short term, the stock market is a voting machine. People vote with their opinions and their voice in the short term. But in the long term, the stock market is a weighing machine, and they weigh you on your value. And we're a company that wants to be weighed." You want to make sure that your company and you yourself, you want to be weighed, you don't want people to vote. It doesn't matter in the short term if people don't think you're very good and they think someone else is better, if you're actually better, the market will correct that delusion. This is a lot of stuff to learn.
If you learn all the stuff I told you today, then, I mean, it took me 10 years to figure all that out. So, that was pretty much it for today's video. Just wanted to teach you the genius of contradiction, and why this binary state thinking is wrong and you shouldn't do it, and you've got to learn to achieve things through its opposite. You've got to look at prevailing biases in the market and look at subjective opinions and objective equilibrium states where the market is only really either a nice places. You've got to learn to see when the market is pessimistic or too confident. You've got to get a good instinct for where objectivity lies. And you've got to be willing to beat and form conviction and go against the crowd sometimes, but sometimes you gotta go with the crowd. And you've got to learn to basically be a massive human contradiction, a human paradox.
A lot of people probably make fun of you, they'll be like, because the people do this all the time to me. They say, "Oh, but Sam, you're telling me not to use social media on social media." It's like this person is stupid, right? They don't understand how to think. My goal is to try and help you succeed in business, so, I'm going to tell you that the best way to do that, is to not spend all of your damn time on social media. And the only way for me to get that message to you is because you spend all of your goddamn time on social media. That is why I'm doing it like that. I have a perfect reason for it. And it's because I'm not afraid of doing this thing. I'm not afraid of playing with these forces and contradicting things.
This is what you call idiosyncratic behavior, or an idiosyncratic individual. And pretty much, every genius of all time, every great athlete, every great entrepreneur, every billionaire, every person who's really made it or made a difference in the history of the world as we know, has been an idiosyncratic person with idiosyncratic tendencies. So you've got to learn to use contradiction as a tool. Don't be afraid of it, and don't worry what people think. So that's it for today's video, I hope you liked it, I hope you got some value from it. If you did like it, click that like button, and also, let me know what you thought in the comment section below. And also, click that subscribe button. I release a video like this once every week, on a Tuesday. As well as customer interviews and livestream Q and A's with some of my customers. And so, hit that subscribe button if you want to get more videos like this. Thanks for watching and I look forward to seeing you in the next one soon.