I recentyl read the 50th Law by Robert Greene, here is my complete summary of the book
There are two ways of dealing with fear—one passive, the other active. In the passive mode, we seek to avoid the situation that causes us anxiety.
The 50th Law, however, states that there is one thing we can actually control—the mind-set with which we respond to these events around us.
CHAPTER 1 See Things for What They Are-Intense Realism
ability to focus intensely on reality and see things for what they were. He was a living testament to the power of realism.
Can stand as an individual bulwark to this trend and create power for yourself. You were born with the greatest weapon in all of nature—the rational, conscious mind. It has the power to expand your vision far and wide, giving you the unique capacity to distin guish patterns in events, learn from the past, glimpse into the future, see through appearances.
You must turn outward and become a keen observer of all that is around you. You are doing battle against all the fantasies that are thrown at you.
Experiment. Force yourself to hold the opposite opinion or see the world through your enemy’s eyes. Listen to the people around you with more attentiveness. See everything as a source for education—even the most banal encounters. Imagine that the world is still full of mystery.
Get a fingertip feel for everything going on in your environment—the complete. Get Ideas from everyone.
How could they have been foreseen? Generally there are signs that seem so obvious afterwards. Now imagine those very same signs that you are probably ignoring in the present.
In general, looking at people through the lens of your emotions will cloud what you see and make you misunderstand everything.
proper sense of detachment from yourself and from life. It is not that you want to feel this detachment at every moment. There are times that require you to act with heart and boldness, without doubts or self-distance. On many occasions, however, you need to be able to assess what is happening, without your ego or emotions coloring your perceptions. Moving to a calm, detached inner position to observe events will become a habit and something you can rely on amid any crisis.
Realism is in fact the ideal we must aspire to, the highest point of human rationality.
CHAPTER 2 Make Everything Your Own—Self-Reliance
True ownership can come only from within. It comes from a disdain for anything or anybody that impinges upon your mobility, from a confidence in your own decisions, and from the use of your time in constant pursuit of education and improvement.
This should not be a source of fear but of freedom. When you prove to yourself that you can get things on your own, then you experience a sense of liberation.
Think of it this way: dependency is a habit that is so easy to acquire just above water. It is hard to resist. But once you give in, it is like a prison you enter that you cannot ever leave. You continually look outward for help and this severely limits your options and maneuverability. When the time comes, as it inevitably does, when you must make an important decision, you have nothing inside of yourself to depend on.
It is a kind of exercise you must practice on a daily basis—weaning yourself from dependencies, listening less to others’ voices and more to your own, cultivating new skills.
Your life must be a progression towards ownership—first mentally of your independence, and then physically of your work, owning what you produce.
- STEP ONE: RECLAIM DEAD TIME
- STEP TWO: CREATE LITTLE EMPIRES: While still working for others, your goal at some point must be to carve out little areas that you can operate on your own, cultivating entrepreneurial skills.
- STEP THREE: MOVE HIGHER UP THE FOOD CHAIN
- STEP FOUR: MAKE YOUR ENTERPRISE A REFLECTION OF YOUR INDIVIDUALITY; Understand: you are one of a kind. Your character traits are a kind of chemical mix that will never be repeated in history. You must not be afraid of your uniqueness and you must care less and less what people think of you.
People who are self-sufficient are generally types who are more comfortable with themselves. They do not look for things that they need from other people. Paradoxically this makes them more attractive and seductive.
CHAPTER 3 Turn Shit into Sugar—Opportunism
This is a common occurrence in history: almost all great military and political triumphs are preceded by some kind of crisis. That is because a substantial victory can only come out of a moment of danger and attack. Without these moments, leaders are never challenged, never get to prove themselves. If the path is too smooth, they grow arrogant and make a fatal mistake. The fearless types require some kind of adversity against which they can measure themselves.
When things are going well, that is precisely when you must be concerned and vigilant. You know it will not last and you will not be caught unprepared. When things are going badly, that is when you are most encouraged and fearless. Finally you have material for a powerful reversal, a chance to prove yourself. It is only out of danger and difficulty that you can rise at all. By simply embracing the moment as something positive and necessary you have already converted it into gold.
The truth is that for the human mind, everything that crosses its path can be a potential tool for power and expansion.
This attitude is what we shall call “opportunism.” True opportunists do not require urgent, stressful circumstances to become alert and inventive. They operate this way on a daily basis. They channel their aggressive energy into hunting down possibilities for expansion in the most banal and insignificant events. Everything is an instrument in their hands, and with this enlarged notion of opportunity, they create more of it in their lives and gain great power.
One opportunity you can always bank on is that a younger generation will react against the sacred cows of the older generation. I move before you think you are ready. It is as if you are making it a little more difficult for yourself, deliberately creating obstacles in your path. But it is a law of power that your energy will always rise to the appropriate level. When you feel that you must work harder to get to your goal because you are not quite prepared, you are more alert and inventive.
CHAPTER 4 Keep Moving—Calculated Momentum
The fearless types in history all reveal a greater capacity to handle chaos and to use it for their purposes
Understand: it is not only what you do that must have flow, but also how you do things. It is your strategies, your methods of attacking problems, that must constantly be adapted to
circumstances. Strategy is the essence of human action—the bridge between an idea and its realization in the world. Too often these strategies become frozen into conventions, as people mindlessly imitate what worked before. By keeping your strategies attuned to the moment, you can be an agent of change.
- MENTAL FLOW, This comes from widening your fields of study and observation, letting yourself be carried along by what you discover.
- EMOTIONAL FLOW: Day to wash over you, to never hold on to one single emotion for very long. You are able to let go of any kind of obsessive feelin
You come to view periods of stability and order with mistrust. Something isn’t moving in your life and in your mind. On the other hand,
Moments of change and apparent chaos are what you thrive on—they make your mind and spirit jump to life.
Whenever you feel rooted and established in place, that is when you should be truly afraid.
CHAPTER 5: Be Bad at the right times
IF YOU INDICATE YOU’LL DO ANYTHING TO AVOID TROUBLE, THAT’S WHEN YOU GET TROUBLE.
The first step in overcoming this is to realize that the ability to deal with conflict is a function of inner strength versus fear, and that it has nothing to do with goodness or badness
You are willing to occasionally displease people and you are comfortable in taking on those who stand against your interests. From such a position of strength, you are able to handle friction in an effective manner, being bad when it is appropriate.
This means that in your daily life you must assert yourself more than usual—you take on an aggressor instead of avoiding him; you strategize and push for something you want instead of waiting for someone to give it to you.
You are sending signals to others that you have limits they cannot cross, that you have interests you are willing to defend or advance.
When you submit in spirit to aggressors or to an unjust and impossible situation, you do not buy yourself any real peace. You encourage people to go further, to take more from you, to use you for their own purposes.
Develop the opposite—a fighting stance that comes from deep within and cannot be shaken. You force some respect. The paradoxical law of human nature, trying to please people less will make them more likely in the long run to respect and treat you better.
When the situation calls for it, he must be the lion—aggressive and direct in protecting his state, or grabbing something to secure its interests. At other times, he has to be the fox—getting his way through crafty maneuvers that disguise his aggression. And often he must play the lamb—the meek, deferential, and good creature exalted in culture. He is bad in the right way, calibrated to the situation, and careful to make his actions look justified to the public, reserving his nastier tactics for behind the scenes
Instead of taking this personally or concerning yourself with people’s intentions, you must simply work to protect and advance yourself in this competitive game, this bloody arena. Focus your attention on their maneuvers and how to deflect them.
CHAPTER 6: Lead from the front
The greatest generals in history, however, are invariably those who lead from the front and by themselves. They can be seen by the troops at the head of the army, exposing themselves to the same fate as any foot soldier.
it is much better to be feared and respected than to be loved
Roles I have to fill:
- THE VISIONARY It means seeing something practical and achievable several years down the road, and mapping out how this goal can be achieved. It means thinking in branches, coming up with several paths to get there, depending on circumstances. It means being emotionally attached to this idea, so that when a thousand distractions
- THE UNIFIER
- THE ROLE MODEL
- THE BOLD KNIGHT
CHAPTER 7: Connections the Environment
Understand: the opposite approach is the way to power in this world. It begins with a fundamental fearlessness—you do not feel afraid or affronted by people who have different ways of thinking or acting. You do not feel superior to those on the out side.
Your first move is to open up your spirit to these differences, to understand what makes the Other tick, to gain a feel for people’s inner lives, how they see the world. In this way, you continually expose yourself to wider and wider circles of people, building connections your ability to know everything that is going on around you, to be sensitive to changes, aware of the power structures that are imposed from without and within. There is no time or room to escape to some inner dreamland. You have a sense of urgency to stay connected to the environment and the people around you—your life depends on it.
In any event, what you are seeking is maximum interaction, allowing you to get a feel for people from the inside
- CRUSH ALL DISTANCE
- OPEN INFORMAL CHANNELS OF CRITICISM AND FEEDBACK
- RECONNECT WITH YOUR BASE: Keep your associations with it alive, intense, and present. Return to your origins—the source of all inspiration and power.
- CREATE THE SOCIAL MIRROR: A physical mirror turns you into an object; you can see yourself as others see you
Your ego cannot protect you—the mirror does not lie. You use it to correct your appearance and avoid ridicule.
CHAPTER 8: Self-Mastery
The effort to be a master at what you are doing.
CHAPTER 9: Beliefe in Oneself
Who you are is much more chaotic and fluid than this surface character; you are full of untapped potential and possibility.
You must experiment and feel the sensation of not concerning yourself with what others think or expect of you. You do not advance or retreat with their opinions in mind.
Understand: people will constantly attack you in life. One of their main weapons will be to instill in you doubts about yourself—your worth, your abilities, your potential. They will often disguise this as their objective opinion, but invariably it has a political purpose—they want to keep you down. You are continually prone to believe these opinions, particularly if your self-image is fragile. In every moment of life you can defy and deny people this power. You do so by maintain ing a sense of purpose, a high destiny you are fulfilling.
DEFY ALL CATEGORIES
CONSTANTLY REINVENT YOURSELF
Understand: people judge you by appearances, the image you project through your actions, words, and style. If you do not take control of this process, then people will see and define you the way they want to, often to your detriment.
CHAPTER 10: Confront Your Mortality—the Sublime
The fearless approach requires that you accept the fact that you have only so much time to live, and that life itself inevitably involves levels of pain and separation seeing death as something that you carry within. It is a part of you that cannot be repressed.