Every moment of your life is filled with choices: what to study, how to run your company, who to marry, how to raise your kids, whether or not to run for president, what to say to a coworker who is being a jerk, and how to respond when reality smacks you in the face. You are not, in fact, isolated in space. If anything, the environment around you responds to your actions. The backdrop of the position you find yourself in matters.
Consider how the choices of a lumberjack and a general might be drastically different. Usually, when a lumberjack decides to chop down a tree, the wood doesn’t put up much of a struggle. In this situation, he is in a neutral setting. But as the general tries to break up the enemy army, he needs to be able to predict and beat his opponent’s plans.
Sometimes, you may need to assume the persona of a lumberjack, a commander, or some other profession. As a result, there is no single text that serves as a definitive bible, providing answers to every question. Even the best counsel can’t be taken at face value and used in every circumstance.
Brushing your teeth is a piece of advice that everyone can get behind. However, taking out the toothbrush before an important business meeting is not recommended. In my opinion, sex is wonderful and beneficial. If my partner and I get into an altercation in the cafe, though, we will both be arrested.
In game theory, the best course of action is situationally and adversarially dependent. All the information presented in the remaining chapters of this book follows this rule.
You should listen more than you talk
It is said that you should use your two ears and one mouth. You’ll have no trouble making friends because they can confide in you and feel heard and understood. However, if taken to an extreme, this can be dangerous. the inability to speak up when you focus so intently on what others have to say. After all, the ability to persuade an audience should be developed.
Know your limits and stick to them
The phrase “keep in your lane” has become a cultural cliche. This is perfect for people who want to get better at chess, ballet, or the science of pure engineering. However, this guidance has the potential to derail as many careers as it launches.
Being efficient in your work is another helpful piece of advice. More productivity in less time will inevitably result in more accomplishments. Being able to negotiate good terms for yourself and your group and coming up with new ideas for innovative ventures are also very valuable skills. You’ll advance more quickly in your career than anyone else your age. But this means nothing if the ladder you’re trying to climb is against the incorrect wall, regardless of how fast you are. You could be the most prosperous person in the world. Does it really matter if you’re fat, single, and depressed?
Things are always better understood from their proper perspective. To succeed as a human in the world, you must understand the rules of the game you’re in. This is the essence of the field known as “game theory.”
Playing with Yourself
Every year, millions of people vow to improve themselves in the coming year. It defines a commitment as “a commitment that an individual makes to a project or habit, frequently a lifestyle change that is often seen as advantageous.” To what end are all these grand schemes to better one’s life ultimately thwarted? According to a CNN poll, only one in five people manages to keep their resolutions for an entire year. There are a lot of factors that led to the bad outcome. People routinely assign themselves unachievable standards and then beat themselves up about them.
One part of you wants chiseled abs and to become a billionaire, while the other part of you just wants to drink beer, eat burgers, and watch Netflix. The present-day self prefers a path of least resistance. How may one improve their chances of success? To what strategy will you adhere?
Every night, you could make a promise to yourself to get an early start the next day. It’s you, at night, competing against your future, less-determined self. In an unstructured game, your morning self has the upper hand since you get to make the second move.
During the night, however, you can change the game by setting an alarm and being the first to act. But will it actually be effective? If you keep hitting zoom again and again, what will happen? So, maybe an even more punctual version of you moved the alarm clock across the room so you have no choice but to get up when it goes off.
On the other hand, a more cultured version of oneself would shamble into the room, stagger towards it, hit it, and then roll over and go back to sleep. The night self will have to come up with another explanation. Why not have a coffee maker that automatically turns on and brews some coffee to help you get out of bed? The pleasant aroma will motivate one to get up and start the day. That should do the trick. It did for me (Jonesy).
It seems like a waste of time to play this game. But the important thing to remember is that you can start making good choices today that will benefit you in the long run.
Playing with Others
You aren’t completely alone. You’re most likely not playing a game by yourself. You can increase your chances of winning games by remembering a few key points.
Your Reputation Is Crucial
In a game of strategy, if you try a move and then back down, you could damage your reputation. In a once-in-a-lifetime circumstance, your standing in the community is irrelevant, so you shouldn’t feel obligated to protect it. Most Australians visiting Bali can afford to be jerks there because the repercussions of their haughtiness won’t affect them for more than two weeks.
Reputation is crucial in other settings. For most of your life, you’ll be competing against multiple opponents at the same time. Your acts in the past will be remembered by future rivals, and they may use this information against you in the future. That’s why it’s in your best interest to build a solid reputation; it lends credibility to anything you do next.
Just think about how the feared and respected Sicilian family has built and kept its reputation for being tough. In order to keep their power, they need people to take their threats seriously. In what way should they go about it? Not even wearing dark glasses will help. In Sicily, practically everyone speaks with a Sicilian accent, so it won’t help. Only a proven track record of courageous actions will do the trick. Murder is included in this category. Starting off, it’s necessary to engage in violent acts in order to gain notoriety.
Imagine a general whose job is to win the war. Most importantly, he must play this game not just with the enemy army but also with his own troops. He must send his troops to meet the advancing army with hammers and tongs. If everyone on his team gets into the spirit of things, they’ll be like a courageous army charging straight at the enemy. The odds of victory for the army and survival for the general and the troops improve dramatically.
But if I were on the front lines, I’d do my job with precision. I’d put on my game face and act as though I’m giving it my all while actually taking it easy. Maybe I’ll “accidentally” trip over a rock and get left behind. While I’m there, I’ll get started on the “ancient” version of lacing my shoes. By taking such measures, I increase my chances of survival as an independent entity. I disagree with the general, who seeks to eradicate all traces of such weakness. How could the group as a whole be encouraged to take bold steps so that it does not give up when the going gets tough?
For example, in the Roman army, it was considered a death penalty offense to stray too far from the front lines. If one soldier witnessed another lagging behind and then died as the army moved forward, the whole unit would perish. In other words, this is the code of honor Any cowards who try to back out will be eliminated immediately. If you lag behind, you will surely die; if you try to rush ahead, you have a decent chance of dying. Under this general’s plan, we might as well just charge in.
There is a foolproof tactic for winning sailboat races. If they are ahead by a comfortable margin and don’t wish to give up that lead, they can switch to a “follow the leader” tactic. All that has to be done is for someone to glance backward to determine which way the sail is being set. Likewise, a copy If you want to replicate your success, just does what the monkeys do.
Similar tactics were used by me (Ashton) in my soccer betting. People in Australia put a lot of value on taking part in competitions where people are asked to guess who will win. Winners are awarded at year’s end based on the total number of correct predictions. Most people would assume that picking the winners of each game would be the best method to win. But you’re going about it all wrong. In a game where you are not alone, game theory can be useful.
Most people underestimate how complicated this game actually is. One hundred people entered my contest, but only one will be compensated. Being ranked in the top 33 percent of players is not where you want to be. You have to be in the top 1 percent. Therefore, taking a chance is preferable to picking the same teams as everyone else. It’s impossible to stand out and win without taking calculated risks.
If you’re leading the pack at the halfway point of the season, everything changes. You don’t want to join the frontrunners but rather keep your current position. The approach of “follow the leader” suddenly makes sense, just as it did in the sailing races. By betting on the odds-on favorites, you increase your chances of keeping the lead. Let the runners-up absorb the hit, and you’ll have a better chance of expanding your lead.
Picking winners at random is a bad strategy. As the game goes on and your position in relation to other players and the clock changes, so does the best thing to do.
Start your day, the smart way!
1 Mail | 2 Mins | 3 Stories