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How To Start Your Startup?

“A startup is a human institution designed to deliver a new product or service under conditions of extreme uncertainty.” Eric Ries 

There is a lot of bullshit in startup land. Every second person is starting an incubator, raising money, pivoting, exiting, scaling, starting, failing, and telling the world as they do it. That said, I do prefer the word “Startup” to the word “Business,” which is why I’ve used it in this book. A business is anything that derives a wage for its founder. By that definition, buying a lawn mowing franchise or opening a corner store is a business. But neither is a startup. A startup is a bit more exciting. It has: 

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How To Get Rid Of Perfectionism And Procrastination -Part2

The biggest danger posed by procrastination is that it undermines individual confidence. But there’s another danger closely linked to this: Procrastination also prevents teamwork. These two dangers, if not eliminated by The 80% Approach, constantly reinforce each other, making it more and more difficult to increase either individual confidence or teamwork. You can see this in perpetually poor sectors of a society, where a great number of people have long histories of deprivation and failure. An individual growing up in this environment finds it difficult to improve his or her life. First of all, personal confidence is lacking, but, second, and perhaps most important, teamwork with others is also lacking. Individual improvement in any area of life always depends on teamwork with other self-improving individuals. In impoverished environments, therefore, individuals procrastinate about taking any action to improve themselves, and they also procrastinate about doing those things that would improve their teamwork with others. So everyone stays poor and depressed. 

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How To Get Rid Of Perfectionism And Procrastination -Part1

The human brain is capable of extraordinary creativity and inventiveness. Our lives today provide us with overwhelming proof of a history of great breakthroughs and progress in all fields of endeavor. All of these achievements were generated by unique ideas of countless intelligent men and women. At the same time, the power of the human brain can work against itself in ways that leave many people feeling chronically guilty and dissatisfied—in spite of living in a world of great achievements. With seemingly everything in the world to be optimistic about, many people are frustrated and non-productive throughout much of their lives. What accounts for this paralysis of thinking and action when so many opportunities for personal confidence and productivity are available? 

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The 80% Approach

I start my explanation of The 80% Approach with a warning: The solution it offers is so simple and obvious that you may discount and ignore it. Here’s how this remarkably simple concept and method will help you eliminate perfectionism and procrastination for the rest of your life. 

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What Is Behavioral Economics?

The Carolina Brewery is a hip bar on Franklin Street, the main street outside the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. A beautiful street with brick buildings and old trees, it has many restaurants, bars, and coffee shops—more than one would expect to find in a small town. As you open the doors to the Carolina Brewery, you see an old building with high ceilings and exposed beams, and a few large stainless steel drink containers that promise a good time. There are semiprivate tables scattered around. This is a favorite place for students as well as an older crowd to enjoy good drinks and food. Soon after I joined MIT, Jonathan Levav (a professor at Columbia) and I were mulling over the kinds of questions one might conjure up in such a pleasant pub.

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Does Higher Price Always Means Higher Quality?

If you were living in 1950 and had chest pain, your cardiologist might well have suggested a procedure for angina pectoris called internal mammary artery ligation. In this operation, the patient is anesthetized, the chest is opened at the sternum, and the internal mammary artery is tied off. Voilà! Pressure to the pericardiophrenic arteries is raised, blood flow to the myocardium is improved, and everyone goes home happy.7 This was an apparently successful operation, and it had been a popular one for the previous 20 years. But one day in 1955, a cardiologist in Seattle, Leonard Cobb, and a few colleagues became suspicious. Was it really an effective procedure? Did it really work? Cobb decided to try to prove the efficacy of the procedure in a very bold way: he would perform the operation on half his patients, and fake the procedure on the other half. Then he would see which group felt better, and whose health actually improved.

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Why You Get What You Expect?

Suppose you’re a fan of the Philadelphia Eagles and you’re watching a football game with a friend who, sadly, grew up in New York City and is a rabid fan of the Giants. You don’t really understand why you ever became friends, but after spending a semester in the same dorm room you start liking him, even though you think he’s football-challenged.

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Why Having Multiple Options Is Holding Us Back? -Part2

THE OTHER SIDE of this tragedy develops when we fail to realize that some things really are disappearing doors, and need our immediate attention. We may work more hours at our jobs, for instance, without realizing that the childhood of our sons and daughters is slipping away. Sometimes these doors close too slowly for us to see them vanishing. One of my friends told me, for instance, that the single best year of his marriage was when he was living in New York, his wife was living in Boston, and they met only on weekends.

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Why Having Multiple Options Is Holding Us Back? -Part1

In 210 BC, a Chinese commander named Xiang Yu led his troops across the Yangtze River to attack the army of the Qin (Ch’in) dynasty. Pausing on the banks of the river for the night, his troops awakened in the morning to find, to their horror, that their ships were burning. They hurried to their feet to fight off their attackers, but soon discovered that it was Xiang Yu himself who had set their ships on fire, and that he had also ordered all the cooking pots crushed. Xiang Yu explained to his troops that without the pots and the ships, they had no other choice but to fight their way to victory or perish. That did not earn Xiang Yu a place on the Chinese army’s list of favorite commanders, but it did have a tremendous focusing effect on his troops: grabbing their lances and bows, they charged ferociously against the enemy and won nine consecutive battles, completely obliterating the main-force units of the Qin dynasty. Xiang Yu’s story is remarkable because it is completely antithetical to normal human behavior.

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