Learn these six life hacks from Elon Musk
Elon Musk has been called many things. How does Forbes' Jon Youshaei describe him? Think: "Innovator. Disruptor. Game-changer. These words are synonymous with Elon Musk. How else can you refer to the man who founded Paypal, SpaceX and Tesla?" Youshaei digs deeper and offers up a few Elon Musk life hacks in order to "help reveal how Musk chased his dreams so you can too." Here are his top six tips in order to live like the real-life Iron Man.
Above: Elon Musk (Flickr: thaddeus cesari)
Read to lead
“You don’t know what you don’t know. You realize there are all these things out there,” says Musk, who said he read the entire Encyclopedia Britannica as a child. Youshaei jokes, "That's right. While you and I read Goodnight Moon, Musk absorbed an encyclopedia... Can you say the same about your reading habits? Consuming social media posts and articles isn't the same. Get lost in books that will expand your horizons and give you new insights and ideas."
Don’t wait, get started now
Youshaei advises that you should "take risks before life gets in the way." He points to a quote from Elon Musk: "As you get older, your obligations increase. So I would encourage you to take risks now, to do something bold, you won’t regret it.” As you get older, family and kids can complicate matters and you may have less time on your hands. Youshaei advises, "Instead, take risks now when you don’t have [so many] other obligations or time-commitments."
Prep for failure to succeed
Youshaei notes, "If you care about something, you should put every effort into following your dreams. At the same time, be ready in case it doesn’t work out." He points to another quote from Musk: "If something is important enough you should try even if the probable outcome is failure." In fact, Musk reminds us, "One great thing about Silicon Valley is that failure is not a big stigma. You can learn from that and do another company, and it’s not a big deal."
Don’t follow trends, create them
“Don’t just follow the trend,” Musk has said. He proved this recently when he decided to completely delete his company's Facebook accounts for Tesla and SpaceX. While a few other firms just paused their Facebook ad campaigns, Musk took the bold move of leaving over 5 million Facebook followers — something most companies wouldn't dare to do. Instead, Musk took a stand against Facebook's reckless misuse of 50 million users' personal information.
Above: Elon Musk deletes the company Facebook pages for both Tesla and SpaceX (Youtube: BNO News)
Build a feedback loop
Musk explained, “It’s very important to have a feedback loop, where you're constantly thinking about what you've done and how you could be doing it better. I think that's the single best piece of advice: constantly think about how you could be doing things better and questioning yourself.” Don't just rest on your laurels, Youshaei explains, "There's always room for improvement."
Above all, provide value
Don't just look for a quick money grab. Musk has said, "make something that has high value to people… [even] if it has a small amount of good for a large number of people, I think that’s fine. Stuff doesn’t need to change the world just to be good." But it does need to deliver value. Look at what you're doing and constantly question yourself on this front. Musk says that he always asks himself: "Will this activity result in a better product or service? If not, I stop those efforts."