Warren Buffett: "I have no stress whatsoever. Zero. You know, I mean, I get to do what I love to do every day. You know, and I’m surrounded by people that are terrific."
A+ post. On this topic, you might enjoy Ralph Wanger's book A Zebra Among Lions
Great write-up on this issue.
I think the overall problem I see in the investment community is that "laziness" is a highly loaded term when one looks at the consensus definition. Really it seems to in fact relate to observable activity or being overtly busy, whereas what these folks (Buffett, Soros, etc) are doing is conserving energy and intense focus for when it is going to be advantageous in a truly career-defining way. And in markets those opportunities only come around once every few years, not every week. This then gets defined as "laziness" by the majority because all they're witnessing from their perspective is someone sitting around reading and getting themselves in the perfect frame of mind to be able to spot and make the most of extremely rare opportunities.
In reality they are conserving themselves for those few moments in life that truly matter, whereas the constantly busy are like people who treat energy the way most treat cash - they constantly spend what they have on a daily basis and then when a life-changing opportunity comes along for them to invest in they have no money or very little of it to invest. It's interesting how many similarities there are between both cash and energy in these situations. I remember being told as a kid that money is stored up energy or labor in paper form, so in that respect there is a clear link between them and it pays to get the most you can when spending either.
Thanks again for the excellent article.
I like comparing an investor to an athlete. But, as always, there are exceptions! Sometimes it can be better to put in extra effort and gain experience in the early stages of your career, as it can help develop the ability to recognize important opportunities and make key decisions. Almost like building “muscle memory” in sports.
Overall, though, I think regular 8-hours of sleep needs to be recognized as key 😂. I’ve always felt like more sleep is the 10x drug that make anyone more happy and healthier in the long term.
So, what do you do when your competition is no longer all those smart guys and gals, but AI. This is where creativity and asymmetry becomes greater tools for advantage.
An alligator rested on the riverbank, unmoving and invisible, watching small fish swim by. The alligator was hungry, but it didn’t go after the small fry. The creature waited so calmly that the river’s inhabitants became busy with their own interests and stopped noticing the alligator. After a long while, a particularly big, succulent-looking fish swam by. That’s when the beast opened its maw. The alligator gulped the big fish whole. I’d like to think, that we can be like the hungry alligator.
Messi - another perfect example. Walks majority of the game - but then, when required, virtuosity!
This is an amazingly thoughtful piece. In ways it mirrors the point about Buffet and Soros because it patiently assembles anecdotes from decades to make an obvious point that I've not seen anyone else make this well. Bravo