How to Improve Your Instincts

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Scenario: "Dude, you can't. You just have it or you don't. Yay!"

  1. What makes people shine?
  2. What makes them be the most creative badasses?
  3. What makes outside-the-box ideas develop?

It's your intuition (i.e. your instincts). You don't derive some ridiculously-creative idea in the world through "strategic planning." Oh no -- your awesome ideas come from that "POP!" inside your unconscious mind when you're resting, showering, walking in the park, blah, blah. That's where the world's creative juices lie -- where you get your greatest ideas that the world covets. But how do you empower that intuition? Through knowledge.

How Your Brain Makes Gut Decisions

  1. Think of a balloon.
  2. You start blowing into it.
  3. It becomes fatter, then fatter, then before you know it...
  4. POP!

That's akin to how solid intuition works. You fill up your brain with as much knowledge as humanly possible, then before you know it:

  • !@^^-!@^^%^-POP!

You just braced your brain for a super-amazingly-awesome idea whenever you need it. Once you fill up your knowledge stream, you start empowering your instincts.

Do You Need Knowledge?

A superficial 'gut feeling' -- with no relevant background/knowledge -- drives you to make shoddy decisions. For instance, say you're running a multi-multi-million dollar company:

  1. You take some college dude with no business background.
  2. You let him run your company.
  3. What results? Bankruptcy through his speculative 'gut' decisions.

He has no knowledge of running a business -- much less deep knowledge of your business, so his gut feelings will destroy everything you built. Instead, if you want to pass over controls to somebody else, how do you freakishly boost your business's chances at succeeding? You do it by giving it to somebody who's worked with your business for a long time -- and knows the business's ins-and-outs more than anyone other than you. With that freakish knowledge to serve him/her, that new leader will make sound-intuitive decisions:

  • "I just have a feeling we can increase opportunities through..."
  • "I just really have a gut feeling about this hire..."
  • "That vendor gives me a bad feeling about..."
  • "I really think we need to hold off on..."

Sexy Knowledge + Intuition = Win.

"But what if my intuition is wrong?!"

Don't sweat: making quick decisions, and then adapting to the environment is how people/organizations/yadda rock -- and overcome any barriers on their paths. You won't have all the facts, the data, the yadda -- to plan conclusively for the future. That's why most economists who 'predict the future' eat their words days/months/years later.

  • And, that's why Warren Buffet still invests in poor companies.
  • That's why the best Silicon Valley venture capitalists get most investments wrong.
  • That's why successful entrepreneurs still fail, then fail some more.

Instead, making sound decisions takes adapting to the current environment as many times as possible. Your intuition -- then -- will drive you to make those quick decisions, based on your ridiculously fat database of knowledge -- and adapt to your current realities. (Remember the rule of thumb: The person who most adapts to the current realities and environment wins just about every time.)

And sure, you won't win every-single-freakin'-time.

Instead, think of running your business/life like you're playing a game of poker: It's not about results; it's about making consistently good decisions. You want to make consistently good decisions -- that over time -- will pull you ahead. Filling your brain with fat knowledge, then trusting your instincts -- will drive you toward that celebration. To ensure that intuitive gut-feeling rocks:

"Where's my fat-sexy knowledge fillers?!"


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Posted on May 03

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