First principles thinking and 1K subscribers!


we made it!

This week we reached our very first milestone: 1.000 subscribers to We Who Think.

Thank you for your help in sharing the newsletter with your friends.

This opens the door to some evolution in the project. For example, we are working on a brand new website. I will update you during the next weeks.

In the meantime, Europe is going back into various lockdowns. So I plan to remain in Bali till the end of the year. Without thinking, that a perpetual summer is much better than the European winter 🤪

Now let's go back to the main topic of this newsletter: 3 ultra-focused ideas to reduce life complexity.

But first… Do you like this newsletter? 

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Personal values: how knowing yourself can guide your actions

Your personal values do not have to be fixed. In fact, it is probably healthier for your values to change over the course of your life based on what you learn from your experiences and relationships with others. | Ness Labs

Value is a word with various meanings. In this case, the author talks about the personal preferences that guide our actions.

During childhood we inherit most of them from the family and society in which we grow. It's natural, but not necessarily good for us.

Some personal values are not evidence-based and will ruin our life. And unfortunately, we had extreme examples of this during the recent terrorist attacks in Europe.

To become an independent and rational thinker:

  • on one side question the validity of your actual personal values,

  • on the other pro-actively shape new ones, based on what you learn every day.

[Read the full content here: Personal values: how knowing yourself can guide your actions]

Proof of abundance

There is NO DOUBT that you’ll get pushback from friends and family as you talk about a hopeful and abundant future… But that’s okay, show them the data. | Peter H. Diamandis

“2020 is the worst year ever.”

“We'll never recover from it.”

Negativity is everywhere these days. And it increases our fear of the future.

Being afraid is a normal emotion. But it's also dangerous when we make decisions. Even more, when most of our fears are not rational.

Maybe not as fast as you and I want, but life on the planet is getting better and better.

And there's plenty of data to support this statement (for example child mortality has never been so low).

Check them out, and keep checking them. Your decision-making process improves when you're in a positive state of mind.

[Read the full content here: Proof of abundance]

First principles thinking

Think of first principles as individual LEGO pieces. While they come in different shapes and colors, two things are important. First, they can’t be reduced further. Second, they can be combined in new and interesting ways to create something new. | Shane Parrish

First principles are the foundation to gain mental clarity.

How to use this mental model?

  1. Break down every new idea or concept to its tiniest components.

  2. Then analyze it one by one.

  3. Keep only what is 100% true. Discard everything else.

If you don't operate this process, you'll fill up your brain with contradictions. At first, it doesn’t seem a big deal. But in time, your decision-making process becomes completely unreliable.

[This content is a tweet storm. You can read it here: Twitter]

Best book of the week (for me)

The Navalmanack, by Naval Ravikant

  • Pros -> I loved the explanation about the concept of leverage. The super Twitter-like style of the writing makes it a quick read. Ah, it's also free.

  • Cons -> Many concepts are not really innovative, just better written (which is not that bad, anyway).

And you? Which book did you enjoy recently? Let us know. We are always on the lookout for exciting new titles.

No time to read? 

Get the key ideas from bestselling nonfiction titles. Try Blinkist for free

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Thank you for reading this newsletter.

Now, I’m curious about you. What decisions are challenging you at the moment? What are the mental strategies that you find more helpful?

Write me back!

And don’t forget to share We Who Think with your smartest friends. Thank you!

Until next week, 
Samuele (this is top of mind, now)

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