Ray Dalio’s 5 Steps to Getting What You Want Out Of Life

Have clear goals.

Identify and don’t tolerate problems that stand in the way of your achieving your goals.

Accurately diagnose the problems to get at their root causes.

Design plans that will get you around them.

Do what’s necessary to push these designs through to results.

What do you think? No-brainer?

What does having clear goals mean? I have a goal to get six-pack abs, but is that a clear goal? No. It’s a goal without a time box. If it were “I have a goal to get six-pack abs by Dec 31, 2020 6PM”, that would be a clear goal. Having a goal is not enough, what if you have the clear goal in mind but you don’t stop eating cupcakes and drinking soda every day. What if you don’t start doing the right workouts, take the right nutrition. Having clear goals is not going to automatically get you the six-pack abs, so then what else needs to happen?

Identify the problems. Solving problems is not limited to math class. Once you have set a clear goal, identify the problem(s) that stand in the way of achieving the goal. It’s the diet and the workout routines. that are not aligned with the six-pack goal.

Once the problems are identified, understand what exactly is causing these problems. Are you clear on which foods to eat and which to avoid? Are you clear on how much quantity to eat? Are you clear on what nutrition to take? Are you clear on which exercises to do to strengthen the core? Are you clear on how long or how many reps to do? Are you aware of which workouts are not recommended? Diagnose and get to the nitty gritty of the identified problems.

Once the problems are well understood, design a plan to get around them. May be it is the late night craving for an ice cream or skipping the hard workout routine. Design a plan to work around late night snacking. Keep healthy snacks at hand in case the craving kicks in. Avoid buying cakes, ice creams and other sugary snacks. Cut it at the source, once it is in the pantry it is harder to resist. Keep it away from sight, out of sight out mind can help. Skipped a training day, get back on track immediately. Don’t expect six-packs abs by walking 5 miles every day. If you want six-pack abs, you need to follow the recommended routines very strictly.

If you are not seeing the results, go back to Step 1 and rinse and repeat until you get the results. Don’t give up, don’t get distracted, don’t imagine progress, don’t be tempted, keep the focus or give up and go home, it’s better than pretending.

#10 Shiv Gaglani

Rethinking medical education for the 21st century clinicians and caregivers around the world.

Shiv Gaglani is the co-founder and chief executive officer of Osmosis.org, a leading health education platform with an audience of millions of current & future clinicians as well as their patients and family members. Shiv’s primary passion is developing innovative and scalable solutions in the fields of healthcare and education. In his spare time he enjoys spending time with his family, snowboarding, skiing, running, and flying.

“You don’t make the impact you want to have by starting things but by finishing them! –Shiv Gaglani”
Enjoy my conversation with Shiv

#9 Arun Saigal

On creating a new future where anyone can develop apps, no code necessary!

Arun Saigal is the Co-Founder and CEO of Thunkable, the low-code/no code platform that enables anyone to build their own apps without coding. Recently named to Forbes 30 Under 30 for Consumer Technology, Arun has held a variety of leading roles and positions at technology companies, including Quizlet, Khan Academy, Aspiring Minds, and Google.

“Smile, we don’t do that often enough.”
Enjoy my conversation with Arun

“I wanted what everyone wants. To be me, full-time”

Phil Knight writes in his memoir Shoe Dog that he wanted to be himself full-time, not that he didn’t like his PriceWaterHouse job “but it just wasn’t me” he writes.

Do you want to be yourself full-time and not have to pretend to be someone else, if you are working for somebody you must be someone else most of the day and only at nights and weekends you get to experience your true self but even that gets harder if you are spending that time worrying about why your work is not play, why you are not tap dancing to work, what brought you here and how can you get out of that box?

If you are pretending to be someone you are not with your own family, then you are toast anyway, no point trying to fix your work life, first go and figure out personal life issues. You cannot produce your best work.

“Be yourself, everyone else is already taken (Oscar Wilde)” is easy to quote and should be even easier to practice, fire is always fire, it doesn’t pretend to be water, why do we humans struggle?

Swadharme Nidhanam Shreyaha Para Dharmo Bhayavahaha”

Gita 3-35

श्रेयान्स्वधर्मो विगुण: परधर्मात्स्वनुष्ठितात् |
स्वधर्मे निधनं श्रेय: परधर्मो भयावह: || 35||

śhreyān swa-dharmo viguṇaḥ para-dharmāt sv-anuṣhṭhitāt
swa-dharme nidhanaṁ śhreyaḥ para-dharmo bhayāvahaḥ

It is far better to perform one’s natural prescribed duty, though tinged with faults, than to perform another’s prescribed duty, though perfectly. In fact, it is preferable to die in the discharge of one’s duty, than to follow the path of another, which is fraught with danger.

source: https://www.holy-bhagavad-gita.org/chapter/3/verse/35

If You Want To Do Something, Don’t Think About It, Go And Do It

I have come to this point many times. Sometimes, many times in a single day. I have a good idea and then think and think and think about it, imagine all the things that could go wrong and all the things that could go right. Weigh the pros and the cons in a rational way and of course the idea is to come to a reasonable decision. The problem here is that the original idea doesn’t actually get done, lot of thinking usually makes the idea not that interesting anymore and I lose the excitement I had in the beginning.

This line “If you want to do something, don’t think about it, go and do it” from Dyson vacuum founder in a podcast with Guy Raz made me think about this a bit. He has a point, why should you spend time thinking about the idea, what’s the fun in that, all the fun is in doing the idea and not thinking more about it.

#8 Karthish Manthiram

On Creating Fuels and Chemicals For The Next 100 Years and The Importance Of Accessible Role Models

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Karthish Manthiram is an Assistant Professor in Chemical Engineering at MIT. The Manthiram Lab at MIT is focused on the molecular engineering of electrocatalysts for the synthesis of organic molecules, including pharmaceuticals, fuels, and commodity chemicals, using renewable feedstocks. Karthish’s research and teaching have been recognized with several awards, including Forbes 30 Under 30 in Science.



Our work should break us out of what we are used to, it should surprise us, disturb us –Karthish Manthiram

#7 Tirthak Saha

On modernizing the power grid infrastructure and making life choices that you are happy with

Tirthak Saha has a BS in Electrical Engineering from Drexel. He was selected by Forbes 30 under 30 for his work in electric grid modernization. He worked on Smart Grid projects at utility giant American Electric Power. One of his proposals won AEP’s Spark Tank Innovation Challenge and is now underway. The $1 billion investment will improve energy delivery across 9 states.

“Be happy with your life choices.”

#6 Vijay Nadadur

On using machines to help humans to understand natural language faster, cheaper and better and on feeling comfortable with your life choices

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Vijaykant Nadadur is the Co-Founder & CEO of Stride.AI. His expertise spans the areas of Artificial Intelligence and Natural Language Understanding. He is also a mentor at Techstars Paris and Bangalore. He has lived in 6 countries and speaks 7 languages. 



Enjoy my conversation with Vijay

Lessons Learned From Ben and Jerry

We didn’t think of it as a business, we thought of it as a venture. We wanted to do it for a couple of years and then become cross country truck drivers.

A lot of our problems would be solved if we made the ice creams shittier.

Business is essentially “busyness”, it’s mostly commonsense and lot of work.

We ran a promotion in winter called “Penny Off Per Celsius degree Below Zero Winter Extravaganza (POPCBZWE)”.

Ben and Jerry are two great friends and amazing citizens of the world delivering happiness by the pint, under $5

Random tweet (credit: Marche’ Lawton) about Ben and Jerry, haven’t fact checked but if it is true I’m definitely buying more chunky monkeys as well

Jerry Greenfield, left, and Bennett Cohen, the founders of Ben and Jerry Homemade Inc., pose in front of their “Cowmobile” in Burlington, Vt., on June 15, 1987.
( Toby Talbot / AP Images )
Source: https://www.wnycstudios.org/podcasts/heresthething/episodes/ben-and-jerry-warm

Notes and Links

https://www.amazon.com/Ice-Cream-Wendall-S-Arbuckle/dp/1461380677