Rich people – not-so-rich people

Ralf Κλενγελ - Watching for the next animals - Masai Mara Kenya

People compare their wealth to Lionel Messi or Bill Gates, not their neighbors or fellow workers.

But this is an impossible standard.

Lionel Messi had some personal talent, a huge amount of work, and, likely, some luck and some circumstances.

Bill Gates had relevant studies, was born in a wealthy country, and had the luck to be the right person at the right time.

How many people at the Messi or Gates level did Romania ever have? Only a few, and in other areas, not in football/computer software.

Of course, if you compare yourself to an impossible standard, you’ll likely feel discouraged and do nothing. „I can’t ever be Messy, so I’ll do nothing!”

But Messi is the exception.

In my opinion, people should compare themselves with the people next to them: a colleague, a nearby person, some friend.

Surely, most of them will not be enormously wealthy, but they’ll likely set a standard you can attain.

You can’t be Messy? OK, but how about being the person who works at a stadium in Bucharest where Messi will only once come in their lifetime?

You can’t be Gates? OK, how about you sell some computer software, even if it’s not a revolutionary and prevalent operating system?

And another article.

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Thomas Hawk - Scare

Sigmund Freud is explaining to a colleague the connection between fear and sex in human relationships. The colleague asks: „What comes between fear and sex?” Freud replies: „Fünf.” (source)

Why fear is reasonable when I cross a bridge – it mitigates risk, even though it’s unpleasant.

Looking at what’s beneath the bridge, I fear for my integrity, so I pay attention.

Fear might not be a good feeling, but it saves the day.

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Opțiuni suplimentare mașini

Onasill ~ Bill - Be Safe & Happy - Oshawa - Ontario - Canada - Oshawa Car Museum - Rolls Royce,

E o dilemă – oare BMW făceau bine când voiau să ofere anumite funcții (scaune încălzite) ca abonament opțional? Adică să ai scaunele fizic în mașină cu opțiunea de încălzire, dar să poți activa funcția doar contra cost, ca abonament. Adică ai plătit mașina, dar dacă vrei scaune încălzite, plătești un abonament.

Citisem într-un manual de economie că e mai ieftin în unele situații să produci un bun în cât mai puține variante, de exemplu e mai ieftină o tastatură pentru case de marcat cu simboluri Braille (pentru orbi), decât să facă una standard și una cu simboluri.

Nu îmi dau seama aici, dar poate e mai ieftină o mașină în mai puține variante de producție.

De asemenea, poate pentru unii clienți e simplu să zică „vreau la un moment dat, după un an, și un serviciu suplimentar, premium”, decât să zică „plătesc de la bun început toate opțiunile”.

În fine, poate sunt clienți care preferă să poată activa ușor o funcție, nu să meargă cu mașina în service o perioadă mai lungă pentru a li se pune o nouă funcție.

Planul BMW a picat, dar nu mi se pare o idee rea.

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Be enthusiastic!

Prem Rose - Jayantii Laughing

I recently read somewhere that it’s a good practice that you always start with the same energy, enthusiasm, and motivation whenever you start something.

I was once asked, „Do you wish to work for us?” (it was an online agency).

I knew some negative implications of these (more effort for less money, high dependence on a single employer, lack of diversity, losing my current clients, the bureaucracy of either closing my freelancing company or juggling a dual status – employee and having a personal company at the same time).

My answer was a hesitant yes. When confronted with the question, „Hmm, are you enthusiastic about this?” I gave some possible reasons for not being enthusiastic. As you might imagine, the talk ended there.

The thing is, I still don’t know what I did wrong. I did have fears, and they were reasonable. Did I like the new job? Yes, but with implications, and considerations, and doubts.

I don’t think there’s anything wrong with this, and logically and rationally, I prefer a person who thinks about the consequences of their actions to an always-happy-always-joyful person who might get disappointed.

When I start something new, I think of what might go wrong and take measures against this.

When trying to foresee what could happen, I put the evil first and take action against it.

Am I constantly happy? Generally, no, but I don’t think there’s anything wrong with this.

I prefer success to being happy.

Do I take risks and start things? Yes.

Am I always happy? No, and I think that is fine.

I remember an HR person at a conference in college, something like 22 years ago, who talked about a potential employee. That person said in a shallow, monotone, slow, dull voice: „I’m very enthusiastic!”. I like that person’s solution more and more as time passes.

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ChatGPT’s current biggest advantage

High-Angle Photo of Robot · Free Stock Photo

Let’s say I want to research a topic. What are some ideas for writing a document?

Generally, I would do before ChatGPT is research the topic extensively – looking for an exhaustive list.

The problem is that I’d have to read many documents, and most exhaustive lists tend to have a lot of low-quality content.

With ChatGPT, I only need to write „Give me a list of 100 …” and voilà!.

The list is imperfect, but it’s generally much easier to read than through dozens of tabs.

I still need to intervene and use my best judgment, but ChatGPT’s low points are better than I can generally find online.

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2017.01.27 A lie hurts the person who tells it

I read some posts on living frugally on online forums.

Examples include:

  • I have a non-shareable coupon code; I’ll share it with others.
  • I have a non-shareable account; I’ll share it.
  • You can buy cheaper streaming services if you say you’re in a poorer country.
  • I have an affiliate code; use mine.
  • I’ll negotiate by lying about wanting to leave the company’s services.

There’s nothing wrong with trying to cut costs.

But there are some other rules than legal rules – ethical rules.

Even if you can fool a service provider with no apparent direct consequences, this doesn’t imply everything is moral and acceptable.

There are other laws than State laws.

If I can share my Netflix account, this doesn’t mean I should.

If I threaten to leave a service provider without real intention, I can definitely reduce the bills. But I’ll also decrease the value I place on personal integrity.

There are even platforms like GoSplit – you give them money to pay less than Netflix. You pay a commission for having smaller costs with Netflix. And lower integrity, of course.


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