Key Principles

  • High achievers will often put more effort into their jobs than their personal lives because it’s easier for them to see the immediate rewards in their job. They prioritize immediate career rewards over personal goals that will provide long-term satisfaction.
  • We often don’t see the immediate rewards of spending time with our loved ones. It’d be wiser to manage our resources (e.g. time, energy, skills, and money) both for our career and in our personal lives.
  • If we’re stuck in our life or career, it’s usually because we’re not aligned with our true intrinsic motivations
  • Career satisfaction comes from a balance of doing work you enjoy and material benefits. Rich and successful business leaders are not necessarily happier in their personal lives. Studies have shown that money is not the primary driver in job satisfaction. 
  • There are two career strategies: deliberate and emergent. Opportunities, too, fall into two categories: anticipated or unanticipated, often used if the anticipated opportunity does not go as planned.
  • Deliberate strategy uses anticipated opportunities; however, if the anticipated opportunity fails, a better unanticipated opportunity may emerge.
  • Don’t be so inflexible in your deliberate career strategy that you’re not open to a potentially better emergent career strategy.
  • Most plans are based on assumptions that tend to be incorrect. Be aware and test your assumptions. 
  • Hygiene-motivation theory states that to achieve job satisfaction you need a balance of both hygiene factors (e.g. salary, working conditions, benefits, status, etc) and motivation factors (e.g. contribution, growth, etc).
  • Often we allocate fewer resources (e.g. energy, time, money) to the things that truly matter to us.
  • Spending attention and energy on children is an important investment in your child’s development, even if you can’t see immediate results. Research shows the most influential time in the development of a child’s intelligence is within their first year of life.
  • It’s difficult to let who you teach (e.g. kids, coaching clients, etc) fail, however, this is how they grow, learn, and develop a healthy self esteem.
  • Whether in business or in your personal life, it’s important to understand the needs of others. It’s best to communicate rather than assuming you know what others need.
  • Beware of marginal thinking - letting something go, “just this once.” This can snowball into additional cover-ups and general ineffectiveness, destroying what was built. (e.g. The movie rental company Blockbuster fell into marginal thinking. Blockbuster’s failure to update their business model in light of Netflix’s innovation, resulted in bankruptcy).


The above is inspired from the bestselling book "How Will You Measure Your Life?" by clayton christensen.

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