"Success is not final; failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts."
— Winston Churchill
I used to think that you could only talk about failure once you had succeeded. It is a frequent narrative we see as founders/investors.
Folks that explicitly talk about failure and how “great it feels” have been able to prevail and transition to the other side. It is easy to hear from Sir Richard Branson talk about his failures on a stage at a conference — it feels inspiring, but at the same time, intimidating.
Prevailing and being able to take punches are the only things that matter in life. 2017 was a tough year for me, but it was also the year in which I lost the fear of death.
We are on the earth plane for little time. Why do you enjoy suffering so much? Why is that relevant to you? Suffering makes no sense, yet we can’t get rid of it — unless we focus on the present moment.
Suffering and failure are essential channels for your evolution and development. The key is how you respond to what happens to you. You will be challenged. You are here to evolve. Embrace it.
Yet people hold on to the past, waiting for an opportunity to “correct a wrong” or act with vengeance. That is the opposite of living with virtue. The sickness is profound if you can’t let go of the ones that worked out of their way to hurt you. Forgive them and move on.
You should not fear failure. You should fear not embracing life at full potential, with virtue. Give it all you got to live and see what comes back.
Once you learn how to calm your mind and connect with the divine, you become an unstoppable force of nature; nothing will stop you — you wake up daily with this suspending disbelief that everything is possible. Once you are in that state of mind, you will win. It is only a matter of time.
I only invest in inevitable people that believe in themselves with a level of absurd irrationality and resilience. Once you understand that the continuation of the journey is what matters, it all changes perspective.
Death is a positive forcing function for you to dare and be brave.
"If then, whatever the time may be when thou shalt be near to thy departure, neglecting everything else thou shalt respect only thy ruling faculty and the divinity within thee, and if thou shalt be afraid not because thou must some time cease to live, but if thou shalt fear never to have begun to live according to nature- then thou wilt be a man worthy of the universe which has produced thee, and thou wilt cease to be a stranger in thy native land, and to wonder at things which happen daily as if they were something unexpected, and to be dependent on this or that."
— Marcus Aurelius, Meditations, Book XII
"Luck is what happens when preparation meets opportunity."
— Seneca, Letters from a Stoic
Several thinkers deeply influenced me as a professional investor and man. One of them is Charlie Munger. Charlie’s Almanack is a must-read for everyone.
I must have seen >2500 pitch decks, in the past four years. Most founders over-complicate pitch decks. 10 slides are everything you need.