Conquering the Mind

Greatest desires always win!

Conquering the Mind

I recently got a chance to revisit one of my all-time favourite podcasts - Conquering the Mind - hosted by Naval Ravikant with Kapil Gupta. It's always fascinating from time to time to relisten two intellectual talks about new topics, ideas and concepts that made food for thoughts. One such topic discussed in the podcast is prescriptions.

A young man comes to visit Mozart and asks him for advice on writing symphonies. Mozart asked him, how old are you? The man said I am 23. Mozart said you are too young to write symphonies. He asked him surprisingly, but you were writing symphonies when you are 10 years old. Mozart said, yes, but I wasn’t asking other people how to do it.

Prescriptions are the hacks, techniques, methods, or To Do's to get from point A to B. Anything from a mechanical standpoint like driving a car, the basics can be prescriptionized. But when trying to race around the track faster than anyone, prescriptions don't work. The person has to forge their path to be there in the zone.

Take all the top performers who made it to a status of world-class and if you retraced their steps and did everything again the same way but this time mimicking himself, he would fail. Even he wouldn't be able to do it.

When venturing into a realm of art in any form, be it in a business, sports or setting up to find peace in your life or freedom cannot be prescriptionized.

There is no defined path to go to point X. You can’t watch Roger Federer play tennis and swing the racket the same way there are no descriptions from him on how to swing the racket to get us to swing it in the right way. You can read Steve Jobs or Elon musk biographies and get inspired, but if you want to be amazing at something prescriptions don’t work. Greatness is a murky affair, it's non-linear and unpredictable.

* People who ask for stock tips, not series about investing.
* People who ask for book recommendations, not series about reading.
* People who ask what business should I start are not series about entrepreneurship.
* People who ask for a carrier path are not series about their carrier.

When someone asks anything, they aren’t that series about. If they are series about they would figure it out on their own.

Greatest desires always win!

- Kapil Gupta