Life Traps Analysis from WSP

Simple living, extreme early retirement, being wealthy, ...
oldbeyond
Posts: 259
Joined: Thu Nov 29, 2012 10:43 pm

Re: Life Traps Analysis from WSP

Post by oldbeyond »

I think the biggest nugget for me is actively managing your career. I don’t see much value in their strive to maximize compensation/consumption* taken to the extremes they are going to, but I think everyone should strive towards their personal optimum of compensation/free time/skill acquisition/etc. There’s sometimes almost a false machismo to not giving a damn about your job. Even if you’re Jacob-extreme that’s still five years of your life when work is your main occupation. With lower SR:s and higher multiples(aiming for 33x expenses) it is even more. It seems wasteful not to get the most out that time.

It might not mean careerism in the normal sense at all, but it means something different than “sticking it out” for ten or fifteen years. As far as I understand, jacob and MMM didn’t hate their jobs to then retire. They fell out of love with the career/found greener pastures already having reached FI. That seems very different psychologically.

This all probably reflects a lot about me since I’ve always had a tendency to withdraw and avoid risk/responsibility. Finding ERE before starting my career made me a bit complacent and entitled when I started out in my profession. For me that did not result in a happy life and would have been unsustainable over 15 years. Fortunately I managed to change my ways and feel much better. I’m also much more competent, not just at work but generally in life. Still, I do not think I am alone in my temperament.

If you want a very different take on career capital in the specifics that share the underlying principles(filtering, striving for excellence, leveraging that to get what you want) I recommend So Good They Can’t Ignore You by Newport. There is a thread on here about it.

* also while I like the concept of a side business, it seems a bit unbalanced if you’re already working 60+ hours with high pressure.

BRUTE
Posts: 3798
Joined: Sat Dec 26, 2015 5:20 pm

Re: Life Traps Analysis from WSP

Post by BRUTE »

EdithKeeler wrote:
Fri Dec 28, 2018 1:46 pm
I read stuff like this and shake my head. I wonder how much contact you have with people different from you.
brute's whole point is: 95% of humans can't ERE either.

BRUTE
Posts: 3798
Joined: Sat Dec 26, 2015 5:20 pm

Re: Life Traps Analysis from WSP

Post by BRUTE »

prognastat wrote:
Fri Dec 28, 2018 11:08 am
@BRUTE
Even if 50% learn a bunch of math and put on a suit/learn to code still only 5% percent can reach the 95th percentile
so?

classical_Liberal
Posts: 2147
Joined: Sun Mar 20, 2016 6:05 am

Re: Life Traps Analysis from WSP

Post by classical_Liberal »

EdithKeeler wrote:
Fri Dec 28, 2018 1:46 pm
I mean: I don’t disagree with you on principle: people should be able to learn math (and reading!) and get good jobs, but... well, they aren’t. And can’t, unless something significant happens with education.
I don't necessarily think it's an education issue. I believe most on this forum are skewed so far right on the intelligence bell curve they can't possible understand people who fall anywhere on the left side. That's 50% of the population! Imagine being in the 30th percentile, that person has a huge uphill battle. Add to that motivation. Again, I would bet if we could statistically compare the average forum member on a bell curve of motivation we'd be looking at right-sided outliers.

Wrt to the suggestion of sales, I think WSP are right on suggesting an averagely intelligent person should focus on sales if max income in a white collar job is the goal. Assuming an average or greater EQ, A good sales person rakes it in compared to many professions. I've worked in sales, and the big producers aren't that intelligent.
oldbeyond wrote:
Sat Dec 29, 2018 5:45 am
I think the biggest nugget for me is actively managing your career.
Great point! Purposely managing a career, can lead to some great circumstances. Earning the most money possible doesn't have to be the goal either. Many have pointed out how working in the corporate world can provide resources unavailable to an individual. The key is to make your job/career fit into your web of goals. FI simply means you can walk away for as long as you wish if it no longer fits for whatever reason. Plus, lets not forget, there is a ton of internal satisfaction to gain from a job well done, and some external satisfaction for recognition of that by others.

I read about people coasting through there jobs to reach FI and I really can not comprehend why someone would do that. Do you job well, if you no longer want to do it well, get a different job. Even if a job is frustrating as hell (mine often is), at least can go home and know you gave it your all every day.

Jin+Guice
Posts: 785
Joined: Sat Jun 30, 2018 8:15 am

Re: Life Traps Analysis from WSP

Post by Jin+Guice »

The argument about whether these guys are dicks or not (everyone thinks they are, probably even them) or whether this is replicable by everyone sort of misses the point. They talk about how it's not replicable by everyone in pretty much every post.

Also, fuck, I would never suggest being like these guys. They are awful. The point is, do they have something to teach me? I think the answer is yes. They have an interesting perspective. It has some overlap with ERE. I can imagine those of us here who worked on wallstreet (not me) would be tired of this sort of dick-swinging, sexist as fuck attitude and probably wouldn't want to read it. However it might hold some value for the rest of us.

I'll refer once again do Jacob's love of Rich Dad Poor Dad (which never fails to blow my mind), which he said was 1 of something like 3 books that ever taught him something completely new. Have any of you ever read this book? It's like WSP but even douchier. I got made fun of by every one of my friends for having Cashflow Quadrant sitting on my coffee table. WSP is very similar to these books, but it's interesting to read the RDPD perspective in blog form from younger writers who are in a different sort of bullshit profession.

thegreatvoid

Re: Life Traps Analysis from WSP

Post by thegreatvoid »

classical_Liberal wrote:
Sat Dec 29, 2018 7:33 pm
I don't necessarily think it's an education issue. I believe most on this forum are skewed so far right on the intelligence bell curve they can't possible understand people who fall anywhere on the left side. That's 50% of the population! Imagine being in the 30th percentile, that person has a huge uphill battle. Add to that motivation. Again, I would bet if we could statistically compare the average forum member on a bell curve of motivation we'd be looking at right-sided outliers.
JLF once mentioned something about " clueless, losers & sociopaths " viewtopic.php?t=3269

essentially we live in a world , where a small percentage of people have the understanding and intelligence of how the system works and uses it to its advantage ( sociopaths ) , majority of people , who are cluesless and a small group ( losers / middle class ) who strive to be apart of the sociopaths, but the system is purposely designed to keep people out and leave the sociopaths and their children on top .

7Wannabe5
Posts: 7081
Joined: Fri Oct 18, 2013 9:03 am

Re: Life Traps Analysis from WSP

Post by 7Wannabe5 »

Well, I read the whole “Efficiency”book and I didn’t find the advice to be any more sociopathic than that offered by Ayn Rand. It’s not a work of theory, explicating core design principles, like “ERE”, or a work of wisdom, much more experienced older “bro” at early midlife offering practical advice based on experience and some degree of reflection to younger “bro” of age approximately 14 to 26. I think some of the advice that could most likely be read out of context as sociopathic is meant to counter author’s assumption that his younger “bro” reader might be too soft, emotional, idealistic, romantic or easily guilt-manipulated to succeed or even look out for his own best interests.

Also, the entire section on highly lucrative career development is very clearly described as just a means to an end. The recommended progression is from Job( trading your time for money) to Career( trading your performance for money) to owning your own Business ( trading your performance for money and keeping all the profit and control) to Maximizing Turn-key ( business profits while you sleep.) Investment in stocks and bonds and real estate are only for when you get to the point that you have no further use for capital investment in your own business. The author suggests relatively lucrative jobs such as becoming a medical technician for those who do not want to go the top 50 college/ career route.

One simple fact that renders the advice in this book profoundly sexist is that it would be much more difficult for a female to put off any decision regarding starting a family until age 35. So, it would only be useful for young women who are sure they don’t want children or with some fairly major revisions it could be useful to a very entrepreneurial girl who was mature enough to start program around age 14 OR an early empty nest woman who was divorced or had a VERY supportive relationship partner. The found that the advice on dating was quite moderate and well- mannered compared to some player manuals I have read, although I did wince at one section having to do with how to play females who are awkward although attractive.

BRUTE
Posts: 3798
Joined: Sat Dec 26, 2015 5:20 pm

Re: Life Traps Analysis from WSP

Post by BRUTE »

7Wannabe5 wrote:
Sun Dec 30, 2018 11:29 am
One simple fact that renders the advice in this book profoundly sexist is that it would be much more difficult for a female to put off any decision regarding starting a family until age 35.
that is sexist?

7Wannabe5
Posts: 7081
Joined: Fri Oct 18, 2013 9:03 am

Re: Life Traps Analysis from WSP

Post by 7Wannabe5 »

@BRUTE:

I didn’t mean to emphasize negative connotation. In stead of “sexist”, I might have written “ not intended for female audience.” By “profoundly” I meant like a jock strap is not intended for a female.
Since I never seriously considered being a serious careerist and I got knocked up when I was 22, I never had occasion to pause and do the math on early, intense approach to top earning vs. ticking clock on fertility. Mostly just reaffirmed my regret that, since unlike most males, I was full grown at 14, I wasn’t able to emancipate myself and skip right over the time suck of high school. I tried, but failed due to lack of social support and stupid truancy laws.

Campitor
Posts: 1152
Joined: Thu Aug 20, 2015 11:49 am

Re: Life Traps Analysis from WSP

Post by Campitor »

Jin+Guice wrote:
Sat Dec 29, 2018 10:42 pm
Also, fuck, I would never suggest being like these guys. They are awful. The point is, do they have something to teach me? I think the answer is yes.
I don't remember who wrote the following (I'm paraphrasing): It's important to sift through the debris of exploded error to reveal undiscovered fragments of truth..

Anything read critically, even if it's something stupid or silly, may provide valuable insight. It's not a steadfast rule but it's worth stating. Even if everything is 100% wrong, it can show you what to avoid. Or it can provide a window into how different people think which helps build mental models regarding human behavior.

7Wannabe5
Posts: 7081
Joined: Fri Oct 18, 2013 9:03 am

Re: Life Traps Analysis from WSP

Post by 7Wannabe5 »

@Campitor:

True. Even just as a book of tips, I think this book would be worth the cover price for many 20 year old men.

For instance, it never occurred to me that the holidays are a good time to find “awkward” yet attractive females at public venues such as bars, because otherwise they would be in a serial relationship or at home watching Downton Abbey , but totally on the money.

BRUTE
Posts: 3798
Joined: Sat Dec 26, 2015 5:20 pm

Re: Life Traps Analysis from WSP

Post by BRUTE »

7Wannabe5 wrote:
Sun Dec 30, 2018 2:13 pm
I didn’t mean to emphasize negative connotation. In stead of “sexist”, I might have written “ not intended for female audience.” By “profoundly” I meant like a jock strap is not intended for a female.
might brute remind 7 that in these trying times, there's a large difference between calling something "racist" and "targeted mostly at black humans". the same, to a lesser degree, is true for all -ists.

classical_Liberal
Posts: 2147
Joined: Sun Mar 20, 2016 6:05 am

Re: Life Traps Analysis from WSP

Post by classical_Liberal »

thegreatvoid wrote:
Sun Dec 30, 2018 6:43 am
JLF once mentioned something about " clueless, losers & sociopaths "
I don't necessarily think IQ determines how one fits into Gervais. There are plenty of super intelligent people out there who would be considered clueless or losers in that model. Plenty of less intelligent people in the sociopath realm.

7Wannabe5
Posts: 7081
Joined: Fri Oct 18, 2013 9:03 am

Re: Life Traps Analysis from WSP

Post by 7Wannabe5 »

might brute remind 7 that in these trying times, there's a large difference between calling something "racist" and "targeted mostly at black humans". the same, to a lesser degree, is true for all -ists.
Gotcha. Okay, then I would describe "Efficiency" as being almost exclusively targeted at young, conventionally ambitious, un-fat,heterosexual males. Right off the bat, the author makes it clear that if you are lacking in internal motivation to be successful or the ability to not eat pie, this is not the book for you. However, because I am the sort of person who likes to challenge boundaries, I am intrigued (and also amused :lol: ) to explore what the suggested program might offer for an old,unconventionally slacker, not un-fat, mostly heterosexual, female. For instance, one point of agreement/empathy between the author and myself would be that it is super-fun, almost addictive, to run an online business which allows you to make money while you are sleeping.

All lifestyle design books, including "ERE", are mostly synthesized through bibliography. I knew the value of "ERE" when I happened upon it, because I had already read a good portion of Jacob's bibliography and/or closely related titles, so I could see how he had taken the whole genre up a level towards generalization. "Efficiency" does not level up, but it does go sideways of the specific examples or bibliography of "ERE" in a manner that might be somewhat revealing of expansion beyond the INTJ core. For instance, my permaculture partner sells financial products for a living and has definitely read Zig Ziglar, never married in his mid-50s, and is very much opposed to anything resembling a "scarcity mindset." So, his "bibliography" would be in between "ERE" and "Efficiency", but it would still be very much towards systems thinking.

A good example of "towards systems analysis" (stocks and flows) in the "Efficiency" book would be the author's suggestion that when you are out on one of the two evenings the program schedules for socializing, you should place yourself in a location in the line of human flow between the bar and the bathroom or the bar and the staircase. Interesting to contrast/compare this with a notion conceived by the very different female author of "Food not Lawns." She describes a swale (trench dug towards purpose of catching rain water as it naturally drains towards lower points on terrain) as being akin to the feminine sexual energy. I also noted how much the advice in this section on finding females in urban venues resembled the advice offered for successful analysis of likely spots in rivers and streams in another volume in my library entitled "Basic Fishing."

So, the overall advice in this book, what the author recommends to be accomplished between roughly age 20 and 35, would be analogous to the creation of some very large non-living structures within a very large and very securely fenced acreage. In a way it actually strikes me as rather sweet, because I can't conceive of any "what next?" purpose for such a construction besides inviting somebody like a younger version of Annabel Langbein to come live there.

User avatar
jennypenny
Posts: 6646
Joined: Sun Jul 03, 2011 2:20 pm
Location: Stepford USA

Re: Life Traps Analysis from WSP

Post by jennypenny »

Seppia wrote:I’m not exactly a WSP-pro, but what is the point of limiting reading to only 1 hour per day?
Fish wrote:
Wed Jan 02, 2019 5:07 pm
Discussed in this article: http://wallstreetplayboys.com/things-to ... -thirties/

Action Over Books: While you should certainly read every single day (maybe 30 minutes to an hour) you should understand that *action* will result in much more progress than information.

See above link for the full explanation.
I pulled this from 7W5's journal since it seemed like bad advice to me. I read the article and found I disagreed with all the advice in the 'Obtaining Information' section. That helped me to see what I don't like about WSP...

Their advice for maximizing the 20-35 age range might be good advice if you only consider that age range (and only men as 7W5 pointed out), but I don't think it's necessarily good advice when you pan out and look at life in its entirety. While spending a year or two at an all-consuming job for the financial benefits is ok, spending an entire season of life that way would have a negative effect on other aspects of life. More importantly, I don't think one should assume those life gaps can be filled in later, either through effort or by throwing money at them.

I'm trying to think of a good analogy. The best I can come up with is someone running a great first split but then not having the reserves to finish strong. Most of the writing on the site sounds like someone who's 'mastered' their 20s and 30s but hasn't experienced the rest of life yet to see where they might have gotten some things wrong. I'm not saying there isn't some good information on the site (despite the Return of Kings vibe), but it's delivered inside a narrative that IMO is misleading at best for younger people. (Note that the main objections to it come from forumites older than the target demographic of WSP.)

I see the appeal, especially if some of you feel like you missed the boat a little wrt developing high incomes early in life. OTOH, sitting on top of Mt. Stupid at 35 with a boatload of money but not much else in the way of 'capital' seems like an epic fail waiting to happen.

User avatar
Seppia
Posts: 1549
Joined: Tue Aug 30, 2016 9:34 am
Location: Hong Kong

Re: Life Traps Analysis from WSP

Post by Seppia »

I can honestly imagine no scenario where, all else being equal, more culture/education is not a net positive.
WSP seems to think that reading comes at the expense of doing something “more productive” but I fail to understand how even a super busy person cannot find 1-2 hours a day to read interesting and useful stuff

daylen
Posts: 1731
Joined: Wed Dec 16, 2015 4:17 am
Location: Lawrence, KS

Re: Life Traps Analysis from WSP

Post by daylen »

Seppia wrote:
Thu Jan 03, 2019 8:55 am
.. all else being equal, more culture/education is not a net positive.
It is never all equal, especially cultural/education.

User avatar
Seppia
Posts: 1549
Joined: Tue Aug 30, 2016 9:34 am
Location: Hong Kong

Re: Life Traps Analysis from WSP

Post by Seppia »

You can rephrase what I said with
“My impression is that more culture/education is a net positive in almost all instances of life.”
What is the downside of being more knowledgeable? Assuming that anybody can read useful stuff for 1-2 hours a day without taking away from any other productive activity, which I would guess is a fairly sound assumption.

daylen
Posts: 1731
Joined: Wed Dec 16, 2015 4:17 am
Location: Lawrence, KS

Re: Life Traps Analysis from WSP

Post by daylen »

I agree for the most part. Exceptions probably exist at the low and high end of IQ distribution. The low end would not be able to comprehend 2 hours of reading; the high end may run into diminishing returns.

daylen
Posts: 1731
Joined: Wed Dec 16, 2015 4:17 am
Location: Lawrence, KS

Re: Life Traps Analysis from WSP

Post by daylen »

Unless the low end IQ human reads the same chapter on [insert labor skill] safety multiple times in that time period, but that could be accomplished with a short session of 'monkey see, monkey do'.

Post Reply