2 min read

Quote as Code - Be the Best in the World at What you Do

Hey, you did your best at this and you know for sure this isn't for you?
Quote as Code - Be the Best in the World at What you Do
Photo by Braden Collum / Unsplash

There's this quote from Naval Ravikant that really struck me. Here it is:

"Become the best in the world of what you do, keep redefining what you do, until this is true".

Here's how I understood it:

while(notYetTheBestInTheWorldAt(x)) {
    x = nextBet()
    for(N honest tries) {
   		if(foundABetterThingForYourSpecificTalents()) {
        	x = nextBet()

This basically means, practice for N honest tries to do something you think you can be world-class at and work really hard at it before you decide to move on to another thing.

Some Context

But the thing to understand is when this quote turns out to be useful.

It's not meant to enforce you to keep changing your mind around and never sticking to anything serious. If you want to be world-class at something, you gotta do your best, for years!

This quote proves its usefulness when it finds someone that believed that "I want to be the best at X in the world because that's my dream since I was little". This person does not take into account what his/hers attributes are and whether they have the potential for that particular skill, or even if they eventually grow out of it.

"I want to be the best runner in the entire world and beat Usain Bolt," - this belief in someone that has a much inferior height or has musculoskeletal deficiencies will only bring disappointment to the person.

This quote is there to remind us that "Hey you did your best at this and you know for sure this isn't for you? Don't sweat it, pick something else and give your best and watch what happens".

I use this quote as a reminder to not optimize something too soon.

To allow oneself to do some exploration before settling into a particular objective. And even then, let the objective change if another proves to be better for your particular talents and circumstances.

How many tries before quitting?

Once you do pick a goal, then you gotta put in the work.

The thing is that N should be a number way above your comfort zone because that's the only way to really know.

However, just because you practiced a lot a particular skill, does not mean you should marry your end goal for it.

What if I've found A Better Match?

If you are learning to write for a book project, and then suddenly you realize your writing could be better used to sell a product on a landing page, and it matches your circumstances better, go for it.

The thing to keep in mind is that as you progress towards a certain skill, other paths might open to you that wasn't directly linked to your objective, and you could be more successful on those paths.

Some parting words

So if you are able to keep changing what your objective is, until it arrives at your specific knowledge, situation, location, and innate talents, you increase the odds that you'll be the best at it.