#6 May The Force Be With You

Leverage Is Everything

User avatar

Nic Peterson

Give me a lever long enough and a fulcrum on which to place it, and I shall move the world.

Archimedes

Observation:

For about 12 years now I've observed the same thing: People wonder how I get so much done. People have even come for extended stays to try and learn productivity hacks. Much to their chagrin they end up confused and disappointed that I'm not running around "grinding" all day. From afar, they can't understand how I get so much done, up close they don't understand why I am not doing more.

Here's the secret:

There are two superpowers everyone should be focused on developing; the ability to spot asymmetry and the ability to create it. There are many ways to engineer asymmetry to the upside, which is basically what the CCA program is, but we're going to focus on the most obvious and most powerful; a Force Multiplier.

Force Multiplier: A tool, strategy, or skill that amplifies effort to produce a greater output. A force multiplier means you can get the same output with less effort, more output with the same effort, or exponentially more output with a little more effort. Getting a greater output with the same input is engineering asymmetry to the upside.

Some force multipliers are obvious. You hit a nail with more force with a hammer than you do with the same effort and your bare hand.

Some are less obvious. Let's talk about it.

First, we have to appreciate compounding returns.

If I'm an investor and learn a principle that helps me perform 5% better, on average, the 5% better I do on each trade or investment will compound into many tens of millions of dollars. That principle, if applied repeatedly, is a force multiplier.

Then, we have to appreciate fundamentals.

The greatest force multipliers are the fundamental and basic universal principles because they give us a slight edge in everything we do, we get a little more output out of every minute we are on this planet. If you can appreciate compounding, you can imagine the hockey stick type trajectory this can create.

When things aren't going your way or you want greater results, don't turn to the complicated stuff, turn to the basics.

Want better results in the gym? Instead of more complicated routines and random ass supplements - drink more water and improve the quality of your sleep. A new routine and a few supplements might give you a tiny boost, but being hydrated and sleeping well will improve the quality of your exercise, your focus, and your recovery and even make those fancy new supplements more effective.

Sleep is a force multiplier.

Lastly, we must understand sequencing and our sense of urgency

Humans are really bad at both.

Sense of Urgency: mistaking what feels urgent for being high leverage or a top priority. Urgency hijacks our monkey minds and prevents us from seeing or creating leverage.

We want to get in better shape now, so we feel like we don't have time to worry about fixing our sleep.

We have a pile of work on our desks now, so we don't have time to spend an hour a day taking more typing programs.

We need to chop down as many trees as possible today, can't waste time sharpening the axe. (Sharpening the axe acts as a force multiplier)

A sense of urgency will have us swinging a dull axe for the rest of our lives while those that take the time to sharpen the axe blow right past us.

Sequencing: mistaking the thing you want most or the thing that is most appealing to be the thing to do first.

If you want to master many skills, master mastery first. By doing so, you will be able to master many more skills, at a much deeper level and much more efficiently.

If you want to make better decisions, master the art of examining the logic, reasoning, and evidence of decisions, otherwise, you're just guessing.

If there is something you want to do at a high level; whether its chop down trees writes novels, get in shape or have a great relationship, there is always something, a force multiplier, hiding in plain sight that will amplify your future efforts and compound into far greater returns than you may even be able to comprehend.

Be intentional about the order in which you do things, prioritize force multipliers, and develop habits that allow those returns to compound over time.

Simple. And that's exactly the point.

It's a force multiplier.

Nic

PS. If you want to know some of the highest leverage Force Multipliers (in my opinion)... I just filmed a whole series for the Guardian Academy breaking down foundations and force multipliers here.

#leverage