Increasing luck surface area, setting the pace, and getting busy

Experimenting with a different format today. Let me know if you like it.

Ideas I’m Thinking About

Ways to increase luck surface area

What is your potential for serendipity? What things can you do to make yourself luckier?

You can move to a big city. Travel. Work out of a coworking space. Get to know your barista. Join a high-end gym, even if the price hurts a bit. Meet your neighbours. Go to conferences and events.

You can send emails and DMs to people you want to meet. Most people psyche themselves out and never make the ask. Ignore that hesitation.

You can talk to a high volume of people in a short time period. Someone I know shared a 15-min Calendly call link on Twitter and talked to 50+ people in a few weeks. Some amazing things happened as a result.

You can pay for people’s time. Most people have a price, and it might be lower than you think. Consider an author that you admire and would love to talk to. Email them and ask. Worst-case they say no. You never know where a paid call can lead. One of my good friends, who I talk to weekly, first paid me for an hour of my time ~4 years ago. We hit it off. (He doesn’t pay me for my time anymore unfortunately, but if you’re reading this, mate, feel free).

You can publish your work. Essays, tweets, videos, podcasts. Overcome the self-doubt and just do it. Sharing your ideas on the internet is possibly the highest leverage thing you can do to increase luck surface area. (Example: A video I published on YouTube at the end of 2022 has almost 400k views now and has significantly impacted my professional life).

You can apply The Luck Razor to your decision making:

“If stuck with 2 equal options, pick the one that feels like it will produce the most luck later down the line.”

—George Mack

You set the pace

“There is no speed limit. You set the pace. This one lesson has been critical to my success in life and business. It allowed me to graduate high school at 15, drop out of college to start my first company at 17, and build a multi-million dollar company.” —Nathan Barry

High agency people set the pace. They recognize that some things take time, but they don’t blindly accept the standard pace unless there’s good reason to do so.

Speed matters. You fail faster, learn faster, and succeed faster. Something I talk about in my latest video on how to be decisive.

Overthinking as a function of not being busy enough.

I’m starting to believe that a lot of overthinking and analysis paralysis is a function of excess free time.

When you’re busy, operating with speed, and you have a lot on your plate—you don’t have the luxury of overthinking. It’s not until you stop, slow down, and start pondering.

I’m all for an open calendar, lots of downtime to think and be creative. But if you’re stuck in stasis, then the best thing for you might be to get busy. Start saying yes to things. Surrender to the possibility of getting overloaded. You can always streamline and prioritize later.

Ideas From Others

Quotes

“To be busy is the secret of grace, and half the secret of content. Let us ask the gods not for possessions, but for things to do; happiness is in making things rather than in consuming them.” —Will Durant

“Mental clarity is the child of courage, not the other way around.” —Nassim Taleb

Content

Article: How To Be More Agentic by Cate Hall

“In my way of thinking, radical agency is about finding real edges: things you are willing to do that others aren’t, often because they’re annoying or unpleasant. These don’t always surface in awareness to the point one is actually choosing — often they live in a cloud of aversion that strategically obscures the tradeoff.”

Podcast: Writing, Research, Boredom, & Putting In The Work with Billy Oppenheimer

This podcast is one of my favorites. Underrated. And Billy is someone I’ve been following for a while. Well worth a watch/listen.

That’s all from me. Enjoy the rest of your weekend!

-Sam

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P.S. Want to gain clarity, reignite ambition and rebuild your momentum in 90 days?

You might be a good fit for my 1-1 coaching program.

I only take on a few clients per month. Click here to apply and book a call (no obligation).’

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