Don't fall in love (with your ideas)

February 6, 2024 4 min

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In the past couple of months, I learned that falling in love with your ideas can be pretty damaging to what you want to accomplish. I’m still figuring out how to balance between believing in yourself (and consequently in your ideas) and having absolutely no ego when trying to prove them wrong. For me, this is quite hard to do, because sometimes I tend to believe too much in my assumptions and fail to realize I could’ve just pivoted and moved to a new scenario faster.

Jiu-jítsu

I’ve been training BJJ for almost 4 months now and I’m loving it. As Lex said, getting your ass kicked by another human sets a new paradigm for your ego to live in.


In one of my last training sessions, the other guy who was fighting against me said that, in a lot of situations, I wouldn't achieve a better position, because I wouldn't let go of a certain advantage. I felt this a lot of times, but never figured it out. Sometimes, when I was able to get a slight advantage (e.g. a better sleeve grip), I would not let go of it and my opponent would just use this stillness to attack me and neutralize the situation.


The worst part is that, in my head, I thought I was winning and getting better. Couldn’t be farther from the truth.


For you to evolve to a better position, you have to let go of smaller achievements. You won‘t win just by holding a small advantage. Remember to always self-doubt your assumptions.

Mentoring

Abdul and I scheduled a meeting with a startup founder whom we admire a lot to talk about Mind. In this meeting, we got a lot of ideas and asked for feedback about what we’re building and what we could do better.


He gave us a lot of insights about the product, some additional features, and changes that he believes are going to improve what we’re working on. Ironically, the idea that resonated with me the most and stuck in my mind was:


Never fall in love with your ideas.



He explained that we’re just builders, and we’re trying to build something people want. If the product you thought would have a lot of users is not growing, maybe it’s time to review your assumptions and pivot.


A lot of times, you’ve got to admit to yourself that you were wrong. Change the product completely, start from scratch, and enjoy failing. There’s no point in building something that nobody wants, but you thought they did.


I’m trying to improve this myself. I have to internalize that I’m just the middleman. It doesn’t matter if what I assumed was right or wrong. What matters is if I built a great product or not.

Conclusion

I still didn’t find the equilibrium between believing blindly in yourself and always self-doubt your beliefs. Sam Altman has a good take on this.

Cool stuff I’ve come across

  • Finally launched the v1 for my bookmarks tool, heavily inspired by Rauno’s and without a proper name yet. If you have suggestions, feel free to reach me :)
  • Found out about the Vesuvius Challenge. What an amazing project.
  • Read this nice essay about animations.
  • Patrick Collison’s pieces of advice are amazing.
  • It’s nice to hear Marc Andreessen talk to non-tech people like Rick Rubin.
  • Great article about queues and why they rarely fix overloads.