I recently reread the biography of Steve Jobs
by Walter Isaacson and I want to share with you some of the ideas I learned from the story of his life.
Steve Jobs believed realizing you are temporary would motivate you to work on things that are important to you:
“Remembering that I’ll be dead soon is the most important tool I’ve ever encountered to help me make the big choices in life. Because almost everything— all external expectations, all pride, all fear of embarrassment or failure— these things just fall away in the face of death, leaving only what is truly important. Remembering that you are going to die is the best way I know to avoid the trap of thinking you have something to lose. You are already naked. There is no reason not to follow your heart.”
He also believed that you need to know why you are starting a company:
He emphasized that you should never start a company with the goal of getting rich. Your goal should be making something you believe in and making a company that will last.
Steve believed in the importance of learning from others. The founder of Atari, Nolan Bushnell, taught Steve about the power of believing in yourself and how your beliefs can influence those around you:
“There is something indefinable in an entrepreneur, and I saw that in Steve,” he said. “He was interested not just in engineering, but also the business aspects. I taught him that if you act like you can do something, then it will work. I told him, ‘Pretend to be completely in control and people will assume that you are.’”
Steve Jobs also believed in the contrarian nature of materialism:
The lesson Jobs learned from his Buddhist days was that material possessions often cluttered life rather than enriched it. “Every other CEO I know has a security detail,” he said. “They’ve even got them at their homes. It’s a nutso way to live. We just decided that’s not how we wanted to raise our kids.”
I also learned about the philosophy of less but better:
Jobs had aimed for the simplicity that comes from conquering complexities, not ignoring them. “It takes a lot of hard work,” he said, “to make something simple, to truly understand the underlying challenges and come up with elegant solutions. You have to deeply understand the essence of a product in order to be able to get rid of the parts that are not essential.“
Thank you for reading. I appreciate your attention. I will talk to you next week.