More on Personal Growth
11 months ago
By Engaging in these 5 Duplicitous Daily Activities, You Rapidly Kill Your Brain Cells
No, it’s not smartphones, overeating, or sugar.
Everyday practices affect brain health. Good brain practices increase memory and cognition.
Bad behaviors increase stress, which destroys brain cells.
Bad behaviors can reverse evolution and diminish the brain. So, avoid these practices for brain health.
1. The silent assassin
Introverts appreciated quarantine.
Before the pandemic, they needed excuses to remain home; thereafter, they had enough.
I am an introvert, and I didn’t hate quarantine. There are billions of people like me who avoid people.
Social relationships are important for brain health. Social anxiety harms your brain.
Antisocial behavior changes brains. It lowers IQ and increases drug abuse risk.
What you can do is as follows:
Make a daily commitment to engage in conversation with a stranger. Who knows, you might turn out to be your lone mate.
Get outside for at least 30 minutes each day.
Shop for food locally rather than online.
Make a call to a friend you haven't spoken to in a while.
2. Try not to rush things.
People love hustle culture. This economy requires a side gig to save money.
Long hours reduce brain health. A side gig is great until you burn out.
Work ages your wallet and intellect. Overworked brains age faster and lose cognitive function.
Working longer hours can help you make extra money, but it can harm your brain.
Side hustle but don't overwork.
What you can do is as follows:
Decide what hour you are not permitted to work after.
Three hours prior to night, turn off your laptop.
Put down your phone and work.
Assign due dates to each task.
3. Location is everything!
The environment may cause brain fog. High pollution can cause brain damage.
Air pollution raises Alzheimer's risk. Air pollution causes cognitive and behavioral abnormalities.
Polluted air can trigger early development of incurable brain illnesses, not simply lung harm.
Your city's air quality is uncontrollable. You may take steps to improve air quality.
In Delhi, schools and colleges are closed to protect pupils from polluted air. So I've adapted.
What you can do is as follows:
To keep your mind healthy and young, make an investment in a high-quality air purifier.
Enclose your windows during the day.
Use a N95 mask every day.
4. Don't skip this meal.
Fasting intermittently is trendy. Delaying breakfast to finish fasting is frequent.
Some skip breakfast and have a hefty lunch instead.
Skipping breakfast might affect memory and focus. Skipping breakfast causes low cognition, delayed responsiveness, and irritation.
Breakfast affects mood and productivity.
Intermittent fasting doesn't prevent healthy breakfasts.
What you can do is as follows:
Try to fast for 14 hours, then break it with a nutritious breakfast.
So that you can have breakfast in the morning, eat dinner early.
Make sure your breakfast is heavy in fiber and protein.
5. The quickest way to damage the health of your brain
Brain health requires water. 1% dehydration can reduce cognitive ability by 5%.
Cerebral fog and mental clarity might result from 2% brain dehydration. Dehydration shrinks brain cells.
Dehydration causes midday slumps and unproductivity. Water improves work performance.
Dehydration can harm your brain, so drink water throughout the day.
What you can do is as follows:
Always keep a water bottle at your desk.
Enjoy some tasty herbal teas.
With a big glass of water, begin your day.
Bring your own water bottle when you travel.
Bad habits can harm brain health. Low cognition reduces focus and productivity.
Unproductive work leads to procrastination, failure, and low self-esteem.
Avoid these harmful habits to optimize brain health and function.
1 year ago
10 Alternatives to Smartphone Scrolling
"Don't let technology control you; manage your phone."
"Don't become a slave to technology," said Richard Branson. "Manage your phone, don't let it manage you."
Unfortunately, most people are addicted to smartphones.
Worrying smartphone statistics:
46% of smartphone users spend 5–6 hours daily on their device.
The average adult spends 3 hours 54 minutes per day on mobile devices.
We check our phones 150–344 times per day (every 4 minutes).
During the pandemic, children's daily smartphone use doubled.
Having a list of productive, healthy, and fulfilling replacement activities is an effective way to reduce smartphone use.
The more you practice these smartphone replacements, the less time you'll waste.
Most people say they 'don't have time' to learn new skills or read more. Lazy justification. The issue isn't time, but time management. Distractions and low-quality entertainment waste hours every day.
The majority of time is spent in low-quality ways, according to Richard Koch, author of The 80/20 Principle.
What if you swapped daily phone scrolling for skill-building?
There are dozens of skills to learn, from high-value skills to make more money to new languages and party tricks.
Learning a new skill will last for years, if not a lifetime, compared to scrolling through your phone.
Love documentaries. It's educational and relaxing. A good documentary helps you understand the world, broadens your mind, and inspires you to change.
Recent documentaries I liked include:
14 Peaks: Nothing Is Impossible
The Social Dilemma
Jim & Andy: The Great Beyond
Make money online
If you've ever complained about not earning enough money, put away your phone and get to work.
Instead of passively consuming mobile content, start creating it. Create something worthwhile. Freelance.
Internet makes starting a business or earning extra money easier than ever.
(Grand)parents didn't have this. Someone made them work 40+ hours. Few alternatives existed.
Today, all you need is internet and a monetizable skill. Use the internet instead of letting it distract you. Profit from it.
Jack Canfield, author of Chicken Soup For The Soul, said, "Everyone spends 2–3 hours a day watching TV." If you read that much, you'll be in the top 1% of your field."
Few people have more than two hours per day to read.
If you read 15 pages daily, you'd finish 27 books a year (as the average non-fiction book is about 200 pages).
Jack Canfield's quote remains relevant even though 15 pages can be read in 20–30 minutes per day. Most spend this time watching TV or on their phones.
What if you swapped 20 minutes of mindless scrolling for reading? You'd gain knowledge and skills.
Favorite books include:
The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People — Stephen R. Covey
The War of Art — Steven Pressfield
The Psychology of Money — Morgan Housel
A New Earth — Eckart Tolle
All that screen time could've been spent organizing. It could have been used to clean, cook, or plan your week.
If you're always 'behind,' spend 15 minutes less on your phone to get organized.
"Give me six hours to chop down a tree, and I'll spend the first four sharpening the ax," said Abraham Lincoln. Getting organized is like sharpening an ax, making each day more efficient.
Why not be creative instead of consuming others'? Do something creative, like:
Creative projects boost happiness, cognitive functioning, and reduce stress and anxiety. Creative pursuits induce a flow state, a powerful mental state.
This contrasts with smartphones' effects. Heavy smartphone use correlates with stress, depression, and anxiety.
People spend 90% of their time indoors, according to research. This generation is the 'Indoor Generation'
We lack an active lifestyle, fresh air, and vitamin D3 due to our indoor lifestyle (generated through direct sunlight exposure). Mental and physical health issues result.
Put away your phone and get outside. Go on nature walks. Explore your city on foot (or by bike, as we do in Amsterdam) if you live in a city. Move around! Outdoors!
You can't spend your whole life staring at screens.
Okay, a smartphone is needed to listen to podcasts. When you use your phone to get smarter, you're more productive than 95% of people.
The Pomp Podcast (about cryptocurrencies)
The Joe Rogan Experience
Kwik Brain (by Jim Kwik)
Podcasts can be enjoyed while walking, cleaning, or doing laundry. Win-win.
I find journaling helpful for mental clarity. Writing helps organize thoughts.
Instead of reading internet opinions, comments, and discussions, look inward. Instead of Twitter or TikTok, look inward.
“It never ceases to amaze me: we all love ourselves more than other people, but care more about their opinion than our own.” — Marcus Aurelius
Give your mind free reign with pen and paper. It will highlight important thoughts, emotions, or ideas.
Never write for another person. You want unfiltered writing. So you get the best ideas.
Find your best hobbies
List your best hobbies. I guarantee 95% of people won't list smartphone scrolling.
It's often low-quality entertainment. The dopamine spike is short-lived, and it leaves us feeling emotionally 'empty'
High-quality leisure sparks happiness. They make us happy and alive. Everyone has different interests, so these activities vary.
My favorite quality hobbies are:
Nature walks (especially the mountains)
Video game party
Watching a film with my girlfriend
Complexity learning (such as the blockchain and the universe)
This brings me joy. They make me feel more fulfilled and 'rich' than social media scrolling.
Make a list of your best hobbies to refer to when you're spending too much time on your phone.
9 months ago
Three Books That Can Change Your Life in a Day
I've summarized each.
Anne Lamott said books are important. Books help us understand ourselves and our behavior. They teach us about community, friendship, and death.
I read. One of my few life-changing habits. 100+ books a year improve my life. I'll list life-changing books you can read in a day. I hope you like them too.
Let's get started!
1) Seneca's Letters from a Stoic
One of my favorite philosophy books. Ryan Holiday, Naval Ravikant, and other prolific readers recommend it.
Seneca wrote 124 letters at the end of his life after working for Nero. Death, friendship, and virtue are discussed.
It's worth rereading. When I'm in trouble, I consult Seneca.
It's brief. The book could be read in one day. However, use it for guidance during difficult times.
My favorite book quotes:
Many men find that becoming wealthy only alters their problems rather than solving them.
You will never be poor if you live in harmony with nature; you will never be wealthy if you live according to what other people think.
We suffer more frequently in our imagination than in reality; there are more things that are likely to frighten us than to crush us.
2) Steven Pressfield's book The War of Art
I’ve read this book twice. I'll likely reread it before 2022 is over.
The War Of Art is the best productivity book. Steven offers procrastination-fighting tips.
Writers, musicians, and creative types will love The War of Art. Workplace procrastinators should also read this book.
My favorite book quotes:
The act of creation is what matters most in art. Other than sitting down and making an effort every day, nothing else matters.
Working creatively is not a selfish endeavor or an attempt by the actor to gain attention. It serves as a gift for all living things in the world. Don't steal your contribution from us. Give us everything you have.
Fear is healthy. Fear is a signal, just like self-doubt. Fear instructs us on what to do. The more terrified we are of a task or calling, the more certain we can be that we must complete it.
3) Darren Hardy's The Compound Effect
The Compound Effect offers practical tips to boost productivity by 10x.
The author believes each choice shapes your future. Pizza may seem harmless. However, daily use increases heart disease risk.
Positive outcomes too. Daily gym visits improve fitness. Reading an hour each night can help you learn. Writing 1,000 words per day would allow you to write a novel in under a year.
Your daily choices affect compound interest and your future. Thus, better habits can improve your life.
My favorite book quotes:
Until you alter a daily habit, you cannot change your life. The key to your success can be found in the actions you take each day.
The hundreds, thousands, or millions of little things are what distinguish the ordinary from the extraordinary; it is not the big things that add up in the end.
Don't worry about willpower. Time to use why-power. Only when you relate your decisions to your aspirations and dreams will they have any real meaning. The decisions that are in line with what you define as your purpose, your core self, and your highest values are the wisest and most inspiring ones. To avoid giving up too easily, you must want something and understand why you want it.
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Looi Qin En
10 months ago
I polled 52 product managers to find out what qualities make a great Product Manager
Great technology opens up an universe of possibilities.
Need a friend? WhatsApp, Telegram, Slack, etc.
Traveling? AirBnB, Expedia, Google Flights, etc.
Money transfer? Use digital banking, e-wallet, or crypto applications
Products inspire us. How do we become great?
I asked product managers in my network:
What does it take to be a great product manager?
52 product managers from 40+ prominent IT businesses in Southeast Asia responded passionately. Many of the PMs I've worked with have built fantastic products, from unicorns (Lazada, Tokopedia, Ovo) to incumbents (Google, PayPal, Experian, WarnerMedia) to growing (etaily, Nium, Shipper).
Soft talents are more important than hard skills. Technical expertise was hardly ever stressed by product managers, and empathy was mentioned more than ten times. Janani from Xendit expertly recorded the moment. A superb PM must comprehend that their empathy for the feelings of their users must surpass all logic and data.
Constant attention to the needs of the user. Many people concur that the closer a PM gets to their customer/user, the more likely it is that the conclusion will be better. There were almost 30 references to customers and users. Focusing on customers has the advantage because it is hard to overshoot, as Rajesh from Lazada puts it best.
Setting priorities is invaluable. Prioritization is essential because there are so many problems that a PM must deal with every day. My favorite quotation on this is from Rakuten user Yee Jie. Viki, A competent product manager extinguishes fires. A good product manager lets things burn and then prioritizes.
This summary isn't enough to capture what excellent PMs claim it requires. Read below!
What qualities make a successful product manager?
Themed quotes are alphabetized by author.
Embrace your user/customer
Aeriel Dela Paz, Rainmaking Venture Architect, ex-GCash Product Head
Great PMs know what customers need even when they don’t say it directly. It’s about reading between the lines and going through the numbers to address that need.
Anders Nordahl, OrkestraSCS's Product Manager
Understanding the vision of your customer is as important as to get the customer to buy your vision
Angel Mendoza, MetaverseGo's Product Head
Most people think that to be a great product manager, you must have technical know-how. It’s textbook and I do think it is helpful to some extent, but for me the secret sauce is EMPATHY — the ability to see and feel things from someone else’s perspective. You can’t create a solution without deeply understanding the problem.
Senior Product Manager, Tokopedia
Focus on delivering value and helping people (consumer as well as colleague) and everything else will follow
Darren Lau, Deloitte Digital's Head of Customer Experience
Start with the users, and work backwards. Don’t have a solution looking for a problem
Darryl Tan, Grab Product Manager
I would say that a great product manager is able to identify the crucial problems to solve through strong user empathy and synthesis of insights
Diego Perdana, Kitalulus Senior Product Manager
I think to be a great product manager you need to be obsessed with customer problems and most important is solve the right problem with the right solution
Senior Product Manager, AirAsia
Lot of common sense + Customer Obsession. The most important role of a Product manager is to bring clarity of a solution. Your product is good if it solves customer problems. Your product is great if it solves an eco-system problem and disrupts the business in a positive way.
Edward Xie, Mastercard Managing Consultant, ex-Shopee Product Manager
Perfect your product, but be prepared to compromise for right users
AVP Product, Shipper
For me, a great product manager need to be rational enough to find the business opportunities while obsessing the customers.
Janani Gopalakrishnan is a senior product manager of a stealth firm.
While as a good PM it’s important to be data-driven, to be a great PM one needs to understand that their empathy for their users’ emotions must exceed all logic and data. Great PMs also make these product discussions thrive within the team by intently listening to all the members thoughts and influence the team’s skin in the game positively.
Director, Product Management, Indeed
Great product managers put their users first. They discover problems that matter most to their users and inspire their team to find creative solutions.
Grab's Senior Product Manager Lakshay Kalra
Product management is all about finding and solving most important user problems
Quipper's Mega Puji Saraswati
First of all, always remember the value of “user first” to solve what user really needs (the main problem) for guidance to arrange the task priority and develop new ideas. Second, ownership. Treat the product as your “2nd baby”, and the team as your “2nd family”. Third, maintain a good communication, both horizontally and vertically. But on top of those, always remember to have a work — life balance, and know exactly the priority in life :)
Senior Product Manager, Prosa.AI Miswanto Miswanto
A great Product Manager is someone who can be the link between customer needs with the readiness and flexibility of the team. So that it can provide, build, and produce a product that is useful and helps the community to carry out their daily activities. And He/She can improve product quality ongoing basis or continuous to help provide solutions for users or our customer.
Lead Product Manager, Tokopedia, Oriza Wahyu Utami
Be a great listener, be curious and be determined. every great product manager have the ability to listen the pain points and understand the problems, they are always curious on the users feedback, and they also very determined to look for the solutions that benefited users and the business.
99 Group CPO Rajesh Sangati
The advantage of focusing on customers: it’s impossible to overshoot
Ray Jang, founder of Scenius, formerly of ByteDance
The difference between good and great product managers is that great product managers are willing to go the unsexy and unglamorous extra mile by rolling up their sleeves and ironing out all minutiae details of the product such that when the user uses the product, they can’t help but say “This was made for me.”
BCG Digital Ventures' Sid Narayanan
Great product managers ensure that what gets built and shipped is at the intersection of what creates value for the customer and for the business that’s building the product…often times, especially in today’s highly liquid funding environment, the unit economics, aka ensuring that what gets shipped creates value for the business and is sustainable, gets overlooked
Stephanie Brownlee, BCG Digital Ventures Product Manager
There is software in the world that does more harm than good to people and society. Great Product Managers build products that solve problems not create problems
Delivery Hero's Abhishek Muralidharan
Embracing your failure is the key to become a great Product Manager
DeliveryHero's Anuraag Burman
Product Managers should be thick skinned to deal with criticism and the stomach to take risk and face failures.
DataSpark Product Head Apurva Lawale
Great product managers enjoy the creative process with their team to deliver intuitive user experiences to benefit users.
Dexter Zhuang, Xendit Product Manager
The key to creating winning products is building what customers want as quickly as you can — testing and learning along the way.
PayPal's Jay Ko
To me, great product managers always remain relentlessly curious. They are empathetic leaders and problem solvers that glean customer insights into building impactful products
Home Credit Philippines' Jedd Flores
Great Product Managers are the best dreamers; they think of what can be possible for the customers, for the company and the positive impact that it will have in the industry that they’re part of
Set priorities first, foremost, foremost.
HBO Go Product Manager Akshay Ishwar
Good product managers strive to balance the signal to noise ratio, Great product managers know when to turn the dials for each up exactly
Zuellig Pharma's Guojie Su
Have the courage to say no. Managing egos and request is never easy and rejecting them makes it harder but necessary to deliver the best value for the customers.
Ninja Van's John Prawira
(1) PMs should be able to ruthlessly prioritize. In order to be effective, PMs should anchor their product development process with their north stars (success metrics) and always communicate with a purpose. (2) User-first when validating assumptions. PMs should validate assumptions early and often to manage risk when leading initiatives with a focus on generating the highest impact to solving a particular user pain-point. We can’t expect a product/feature launch to be perfect (there might be bugs or we might not achieve our success metric — which is where iteration comes in), but we should try our best to optimize on user-experience earlier on.
Nium Product Manager Keika Sugiyama
I’d say a great PM holds the ability to balance ruthlessness and empathy at the same time. It’s easier said than done for sure!
ShopBack product manager Li Cai
Great product managers are like great Directors of movies. They do not create great products/movies by themselves. They deliver it by Defining, Prioritising, Energising the team to deliver what customers love.
Quincus' Michael Lim
A great product manager, keeps a pulse on the company’s big picture, identifies key problems, and discerns its rightful prioritization, is able to switch between the macro perspective to micro specifics, and communicates concisely with humility that influences naturally for execution
Mathieu François-Barseghian, SVP, Citi Ventures
“You ship your org chart”. This is Conway’s Law short version (1967!): the fundamental socio-technical driver behind innovation successes (Netflix) and failures (your typical bank). The hype behind micro-services is just another reflection of Conway’s Law
Mastercard's Regional Product Manager Nikhil Moorthy
A great PM should always look to build products which are scalable & viable , always keep the end consumer journey in mind. Keeping things simple & having a MVP based approach helps roll out products faster. One has to test & learn & then accordingly enhance / adapt, these are key to success
Rendy Andi, Tokopedia Product Manager
Articulate a clear vision and the path to get there, Create a process that delivers the best results and Be serious about customers.
Senior Product Manager, DANA Indonesia
Own the problem, not the solution — Great PMs are outstanding problem preventers. Great PMs are discerning about which problems to prevent, which problems to solve, and which problems not to solve
Tat Leong Seah, LionsBot International Senior UX Engineer, ex-ViSenze Product Manager
Prioritize outcomes for your users, not outputs of your system” or more succinctly “be agile in delivering value; not features”
Senior Product Manager, Rakuten Viki
A good product manager puts out fires. A great product manager lets fires burn and prioritize from there
acquire fundamental soft skills
Oracle NetSuite's Astrid April Dominguez
Personally, i believe that it takes grit, empathy, and optimistic mindset to become a great PM
Ovo Lead Product Manager Boy Al Idrus
Contrary to popular beliefs, being a great product manager doesn’t have anything to do with technicals, it sure plays a part but most important weapons are: understanding pain points of users, project management, sympathy in leadership and business critical skills; these 4 aspects would definitely help you to become a great product manager.
PwC Product Manager Eric Koh
Product managers need to be courageous to be successful. Courage is required to dive deep, solving big problems at its root and also to think far and dream big to achieve bold visions for your product
Ninja Van's Product Director
In my opinion the two most important ingredients to become a successful product manager is: 1. Strong critical thinking 2. Strong passion for the work. As product managers, we typically need to solve very complex problems where the answers are often very ambiguous. The work is tough and at times can be really frustrating. The 2 ingredients I mentioned earlier will be critical towards helping you to slowly discover the solution that may become a game changer.
PayPal's Lead Product Manager
A great PM has an eye of a designer, the brain of an engineer and the tongue of a diplomat
Product Manager Irene Chan
A great Product Manager is able to think like a CEO of the company. Visionary with Agile Execution in mind
Isabella Yamin, Rakuten Viki Product Manager
There is no one model of being a great product person but what I’ve observed from people I’ve had the privilege working with is an overflowing passion for the user problem, sprinkled with a knack for data and negotiation
Google product manager Jachin Cheng
Great product managers start with abundant intellectual curiosity and grow into a classic T-shape. Horizontally: generalists who range widely, communicate fluidly and collaborate easily cross-functionally, connect unexpected dots, and have the pulse both internally and externally across users, stakeholders, and ecosystem players. Vertically: deep product craftsmanship comes from connecting relentless user obsession with storytelling, business strategy with detailed features and execution, inspiring leadership with risk mitigation, and applying the most relevant tools to solving the right problems.
Jene Lim, Experian's Product Manager
3 Cs and 3 Rs. Critical thinking , Customer empathy, Creativity. Resourcefulness, Resilience, Results orientation.
Nirenj George, Envision Digital's Security Product Manager
A great product manager is someone who can lead, collaborate and influence different stakeholders around the product vision, and should be able to execute the product strategy based on customer insights, as well as take ownership of the product roadmap to create a greater impact on customers.
Grab's Lead Product Manager
Product Management is a multi-dimensional role that looks very different across each product team so each product manager has different challenges to deal with but what I have found common among great product managers is ability to create leverage through their efforts to drive outsized impacts for their products. This leverage is built using data with intuition, building consensus with stakeholders, empowering their teams and focussed efforts on needle moving work.
NCS Product Manager Umar Masagos
To be a great product manager, one must master both the science and art of Product Management. On one hand, you need have a strong understanding of the tools, metrics and data you need to drive your product. On the other hand, you need an in-depth understanding of your organization, your target market and target users, which is often the more challenging aspect to master.
M1 product manager Wei Jiao Keong
A great product manager is multi-faceted. First, you need to have the ability to see the bigger picture, yet have a keen eye for detail. Secondly, you are empathetic and is able to deliver products with exceptional user experience while being analytical enough to achieve business outcomes. Lastly, you are highly resourceful and independent yet comfortable working cross-functionally.
Yudha Utomo, ex-Senior Product Manager, Tokopedia
A great Product Manager is essentially an effective note-taker. In order to achieve the product goals, It is PM’s job to ensure objective has been clearly conveyed, efforts are assessed, and tasks are properly tracked and managed. PM can do this by having top-notch documentation skills.
7 months ago
The Age of Decentralized Capitalism and DeFi
DeCap is DeFi's killer app.
“Software is eating the world.” Marc Andreesen, venture capitalist
DeFi. Imagine a blockchain-based alternative financial system that offers the same products and services as traditional finance, but with more variety, faster, more secure, lower cost, and simpler access.
Decentralised finance (DeFi) is a marketplace without gatekeepers or central authority managing the flow of money, where customers engage directly with smart contracts running on a blockchain.
DeFi grew exponentially in 2020/21, with Total Value Locked (an inadequate estimate for market size) topping at $100 billion. After that, it crashed.
The accumulation of funds by individuals with high discretionary income during the epidemic, the novelty of crypto trading, and the high yields given (5% APY for stablecoins on established platforms to 100%+ for risky assets) are among the primary elements explaining this exponential increase.
No longer your older brothers DeFi
Since transactions are anonymous, borrowers had to overcollateralize DeFi 1.0. To borrow $100 in stablecoins, you must deposit $150 in ETH. DeFi 1.0's business strategy raises two problems.
Why does DeFi offer interest rates that are higher than those of the conventional financial system?;
Why would somebody put down more cash than they intended to borrow?
Maxed out on their own resources, investors took loans to acquire more crypto; the demand for those loans raised DeFi yields, which kept crypto prices increasing; as crypto prices rose, investors made a return on their positions, allowing them to deposit more money and borrow more crypto.
This is a bull market game. DeFi 1.0's overcollateralization speculation is dead. Cryptocrash sank it.
The “speculation by overcollateralisation” world of DeFi 1.0 is dead
At a JP Morgan digital assets conference, institutional investors were more interested in DeFi than crypto or fintech. To me, that shows DeFi 2.0's institutional future.
DeFi 2.0 protocols must handle KYC/AML, tax compliance, market abuse, and cybersecurity problems to be institutional-ready.
Stablecoins gaining market share under benign regulation and more CBDCs coming online in the next couple of years could help DeFi 2.0 separate from crypto volatility.
DeFi 2.0 will have a better footing to finally decouple from crypto volatility
Then we can transition from speculation through overcollateralization to DeFi's genuine comparative advantages: cheaper transaction costs, near-instant settlement, more efficient price discovery, faster time-to-market for financial innovation, and a superior audit trail.
Akin to Amazon for financial goods
Amazon decimated brick-and-mortar shops by offering millions of things online, warehouses by keeping just-in-time inventory, and back-offices by automating invoicing and payments. Software devoured retail. DeFi will eat banking with software.
DeFi is the Amazon for financial items that will replace fintech. Even the most advanced internet brokers offer only 100 currency pairings and limited bonds, equities, and ETFs.
Old banks settlement systems and inefficient, hard-to-upgrade outdated software harm them. For advanced gamers, it's like driving an F1 vehicle on dirt.
It is like driving a F1 car on a dirt road, for the most sophisticated players
Central bankers throughout the world know how expensive and difficult it is to handle cross-border payments using the US dollar as the reserve currency, which is vulnerable to the economic cycle and geopolitical tensions.
Decentralization is the only method to deliver 24h global financial markets. DeFi 2.0 lets you buy and sell startup shares like Google or Tesla. VC funds will trade like mutual funds. Or create a bundle coverage for your car, house, and NFTs. Defi 2.0 consumes banking and creates Global Wall Street.
Defi 2.0 is how software eats banking and delivers the global Wall Street
Decentralized Capitalism is Emerging
90% of markets are digital. 10% is hardest to digitalize. That's money creation, ID, and asset tokenization.
90% of financial markets are already digital. The only problem is that the 10% left is the hardest to digitalize
Debt helped Athens construct a powerful navy that secured trade routes. Bonds financed the Renaissance's wars and supply chains. Equity fueled industrial growth. FX drove globalization's payments system. DeFi's plans:
If the 20th century was a conflict between governments and markets over economic drivers, the 21st century will be between centralized and decentralized corporate structures.
Offices vs. telecommuting. China vs. onshoring/friendshoring. Oil & gas vs. diverse energy matrix. National vs. multilateral policymaking. DAOs vs. corporations Fiat vs. crypto. TradFi vs.
An age where the network effects of the sharing economy will overtake the gains of scale of the monopolistic competition economy
This is the dawn of Decentralized Capitalism (or DeCap), an age where the network effects of the sharing economy will reach a tipping point and surpass the scale gains of the monopolistic competition economy, further eliminating inefficiencies and creating a more robust economy through better data and automation. DeFi 2.0 enables this.
DeFi needs to pay the piper now.
DeCap won't be Web3.0's Shangri-La, though. That's too much for an ailing Atlas. When push comes to shove, DeFi folks want to survive and fight another day for the revolution. If feasible, make a tidy profit.
Decentralization wasn't meant to circumvent regulation. It circumvents censorship. On-ramp, off-ramp measures (control DeFi's entry and exit points, not what happens in between) sound like a good compromise for DeFi 2.0.
The sooner authorities realize that DeFi regulation is made ex-ante by writing code and constructing smart contracts with rules, the faster DeFi 2.0 will become the more efficient and safe financial marketplace.
More crucially, we must boost system liquidity. DeFi's financial stability risks are downplayed. DeFi must improve its liquidity management if it's to become mainstream, just as banks rely on capital constraints.
This reveals the complex and, frankly, inadequate governance arrangements for DeFi protocols. They redistribute control from tokenholders to developers, which is bad governance regardless of the economic model.
But crypto can only ride the existing banking system for so long before forming its own economy. DeFi will upgrade web2.0's financial rails till then.
9 months ago
Meet the $5 million monthly controversy-selling King of Toxic Masculinity.
Trigger warning — Andrew Tate is running a genius marketing campaign
Andrew Tate is a 2022 internet celebrity.
Kickboxing world champion became rich playboy with controversial views on gender roles.
Andrew's get-rich-quick scheme isn't new. His social media popularity is impressive.
He’s currently running one of the most genius marketing campaigns in history.
He pulls society's pendulum away from diversity and inclusion and toward diversion and exclusion. He's unstoppable.
Here’s everything you need to know about Andrew Tate. And how he’s playing chess while the world plays checkers.
Cobra Tate is the name he goes by.
American-born, English-raised entrepreneur Andrew Tate lives in Romania.
Romania? Says Andrew,
“I prefer a country in which corruption is available to everyone.”
Andrew was a professional kickboxer with the ring moniker Cobra before starting Hustlers University.
Before that, he liked chess and worshipped his father.
Emory Andrew Tate III is named after his grandmaster chess player father.
Emory was the first black-American chess champion. He was military, martial arts-trained, and multilingual. A superhuman.
He lived in his car to make ends meet.
Andrew and Tristan relocated to England with their mother when their parents split.
It was there that Andrew began his climb toward becoming one of the internet’s greatest villains.
Andrew fell in love with kickboxing.
Andrew spent his 20s as a professional kickboxer and reality TV star, featuring on Big Brother UK and The Ultimate Traveller.
These 3 incidents, along with a chip on his shoulder, foreshadowed Andrews' social media breakthrough.
A dangerous trio.
Andrew started making money online after quitting kickboxing in 2017 due to an eye issue.
Andrew didn't suddenly become popular.
Andrew's web work started going viral in 2022.
Due to his contentious views on patriarchy and gender norms, he's labeled the King of Toxic Masculinity. His most contentious views (trigger warning):
“Women are intrinsically lazy.”
“Female promiscuity is disgusting.”
“Women shouldn’t drive cars or fly planes.”
“A lot of the world’s problems would be solved if women had their body count tattooed on their foreheads.”
Andrew's two main beliefs are:
“These are my personal opinions based on my experiences.”
2. “I believe men are better at some things and women are better at some things. We are not equal.”
Andrew intentionally offends.
Andrew's thoughts began circulating online in 2022.
In July 2022, he was one of the most Googled humans, surpassing:
Andrews' rise is a mystery since no one can censure or suppress him. This is largely because Andrew nor his team post his clips.
But more on that later.
Andrew's path to wealth.
Andrew Tate is a self-made millionaire. His morality is uncertain.
Andrew and Tristan needed money soon after retiring from kickboxing.
“I owed some money to some dangerous people. I had $70K and needed $100K to stay alive.”
Andrews lost $20K on roulette at a local casino.
Andrew had one week to make $50,000, so he started planning. Andrew locked himself in a chamber like Thomas Edison to solve an energy dilemma.
He listed his assets.
Physical strength (but couldn’t fight)
a BMW (worth around $20K)
Intelligence (but no outlet)
He had an epiphany after viewing a webcam ad. He sought aid from women, ironically. His 5 international girlfriends are assets.
Then, a lightbulb.
Andrew and Tristan messaged and flew 7 women to a posh restaurant. Selling desperation masked as opportunity, Andrew pitched his master plan:
A webcam business — with a 50/50 revenue split.
5 women left.
Andrew Tate, a broke kickboxer, became Top G, Cobra Tate.
The business model was simple — yet sad.
Andrew's girlfriends moved in with him and spoke online for 15+ hours a day. Andrew handled ads and equipment as the women posed.
Andrew eventually took over their keyboards, believing he knew what men wanted more than women.
Andrew detailed on the Full Send Podcast how he emotionally manipulated men for millions. They sold houses, automobiles, and life savings to fuel their companionship addiction.
When asked if he felt bad, Andrew said,
Andrew and Tristan wiped off debts, hired workers, and diversified.
Tristan supervised OnlyFans models.
Andrew bought Romanian casinos and MMA league RXF (Real Xtreme Fighting).
Pandemic struck suddenly.
Andrew couldn't run his 2 businesses without a plan. Another easy moneymaker.
He banked on Hustlers University.
The actual cause of Andrew's ubiquity.
On a Your Mom’s House episode Andrew's 4 main revenue sources:
2. Owning casinos in Romania
3. Owning 10% of the Romanian MMA league “RXF”
4. “The War Room” — a society of rich and powerful men
When the pandemic hit, 3/4 became inoperable.
So he expanded Hustlers University.
But what is Hustler’s University?
Andrew says Hustlers University teaches 18 wealth-building tactics online. Examples:
How to swiftly become wealthy.
Lessons are imprecise, rudimentary, and macro-focused, say reviews. Invest wisely, etc. Everything is free online.
You pay for community. One unique income stream.
The only money-making mechanism that keeps the course from being a scam.
The truth is, many of Andrew’s students are actually making money. Maybe not from the free YouTube knowledge Andrew and his professors teach in the course, but through Hustler’s University’s affiliate program.
Affiliates earn 10% commission for each new student = $5.
Students can earn $10 for each new referral in the first two months.
Andrew earns $50 per membership per month.
This affiliate program isn’t anything special — in fact, it’s on the lower end of affiliate payouts. Normally, it wouldn’t be very lucrative.
But it has one secret weapon— Andrew and his viral opinions.
Andrew is viral. Andrew went on a media tour in January 2022 after appearing on Your Mom's House.
And many, many more…
He chatted with Twitch streamers. Hustlers University wanted more controversy (and clips).
Here’s the strategy behind Hustler’s University that has (allegedly) earned students upwards of $10K per month:
Make a social media profile with Andrew Tates' name and photo.
Post any of the online videos of Andrews that have gone viral.
Include a referral link in your bio.
Andrew's controversy attracts additional students. More student clips circulate as more join. Andrew's students earn more and promote the product as he goes viral.
A brilliant plan that's functioning.
At the beginning of his media tour, Hustler’s University had 5,000 students. 6 months in, and he now has over 100,000.
One income stream generates $5 million every month.
Andrew's approach is not new.
But it is different.
In the early 2010s, Tai Lopez dominated the internet.
His viral video showed his house.
“Here in my garage. Just bought this new Lamborghini.”
Tais' marketing focused on intellect, not strength, power, and wealth to attract women.
How reading quicker leads to financial freedom in 67 steps.
Years later, it was revealed that Tai Lopez rented the mansion and Lamborghini as a marketing ploy to build social proof. Meanwhile, he was living in his friend’s trailer.
Faked success is an old tactic.
Andrew is doing something similar. But with one major distinction.
Andrew outsources his virality — making him nearly impossible to cancel.
In 2022, authorities searched Andrews' estate over human trafficking suspicions. Investigation continues despite withdrawn charges.
Andrew's divisive nature would normally get him fired. Andrew's enterprises and celebrity don't rely on social media.
He doesn't promote or pay for ads. Instead, he encourages his students and anyone wishing to get rich quick to advertise his work.
Because everything goes through his affiliate program. Old saying:
“All publicity is good publicity.”
Final thoughts: it’s ok to feel triggered.
Tate is divisive.
His emotionally charged words are human nature. Andrews created the controversy.
His opinions are those of one person. Not world nor generational opinion.
It's easy to understand why Andrews' face is ubiquitous. Money.
The world wide web is a chessboard. Misdirection is part of it.
It’s not personal, it’s business.
Sometimes understanding the ‘why’, can help you deal with the ‘what.’