(From August 2017) – edited this draft I found. I can’t believe I didn’t share this at any point.
First, let me apologize for my absence. I’ve done a lot of thinking. I’ve been thinking about what I want to accomplish with this page. In essence, I want to share the best pieces of information I have come across in my short life, up until this point. Whether it is about anxiety, life, or any other subject, I simply want to reach as many people searching out there as possible. If even just 2 people benefit from any particular article, I will have done my job. All I ask of you is if anything you read on here benefits you, pass it along. This article is not about anxiety. This article is about a speech given by Charles Munger, Warren Buffett’s right-hand man. To this day, this is the single, most powerful and helpful message I have come across. I would be doing you a disservice by not writing on it. This speech is about life and how to live it. It covers tough subject matter and isn’t easy to do, but it’s what all of us should aim for. It is dense, so I have listed his guidelines and wrote a summary for each.
Charles Munger’s Rules For Life:
- “Don’t buy into any one ideology.” Meaning: this isn’t the first guideline Charles Munger makes, but it is the most important considering today’s division among the USA. Whether you’re Republican, Democrat, or not into politics, this tip is crucial. Whenever you completely buy into just one side of an argument on any subject, you subconsciously look for confirmation bias and ignore anything that doesn’t agree to your belief. No political party or religion is right on everything. You need to do your own research and not get swept up into group think (group think is why the Challenger explosion occurred)The world has been depleted of free thinkers and desperately needs an influx of them. Simple way to follow this: if anyone tells you anything is absolutely one way, don’t believe that nonsense. Nothing is absolute and there is truth found in every perspective and piece.
- “Learn all the big ideas of every major subject” No, Charles is very serious. He speaks of a quote that essentially condemns all those who don’t know the history of the world to aimless children in this life. This guideline ties back to the previous one in that you can’t get stuck in one way of thinking. The solutions to Biological problems will have a piece taken from other disciplines. You learn all the big concepts because the big concepts “cover 95% of it all” as Charles says. So we should all strive to be jacks of all trades. Specialization is preached nowadays because there’s the famous 10000 hour rule. If you don’t know the rule, you understand this trend of specialization. It serves you the best for getting a specific job in your competitive field, but if you want to be the best human being you can be, crack open the other books.
- “Continued Learning is a moral obligation” I’m not preaching the “moral” part. I think Charles uses it for emphasis as opposed to literal doctrine. What it means is that you’ll be capped where you’re at if you stop the continual search for knowledge. Even the idea of only pursuing knowledge for the sake of self-advancement Charles seems unworthy. In the ever toxic, distracted reality we live in, we read less and less. Wait, don’t they say we actually read more? Yes they do, but I don’t believe there’s much value in speed reading something on your phone as opposed to actually retaining information slowly as you flip through the pages of a book. Calling me a dinosaur? Ask yourself this question next time you read something substantial on your phone: “how much could I relay that back in writing right now?” If you’re being honest with yourself, whatever the amount is, it will be less than if you read a book. Wisdom only comes through one’s continued search for information. Don’t become complacent. You weren’t born by accident. Use that brain to it’s full capacity.