October 25, 2022




North Star Metric, Calendar-Priority Alignment, Pre-suasion, & More

At a glance

Welcome to the new friends of the Mental Models, Concepts, and Frameworks newsletter who have joined us since last week!

This Week: 11 mental models that will help you achieve more

North Star Metric

In a company, a north-star is the one metric that the company optimizes for over all others.

It’s the metric that produces the most business value over the long term when optimized.

For example, Airbnb's north-star metric is “# of nights booked.”

Calendar-Priority Alignment

1. “What are your priorities?”

2. “If I look at your calendar, would it be obvious to me that those are your priorities?”

Hack: Use your Calendar as your to-do list so that your highest priority to-dos actually get done.

h/t @rabois


If you want to be persuasive, arrange for your recipient to be receptive to a message before they encounter it.

What we present first changes the way people experience what we present next.

The more generous your offer ‘seems’, the more attractive it will be.

Deep Work

Deep work is single-tasking, limiting your context switching and distractions in your immediate working environment.

Shallow work is logistical-style tasks, often performed while distracted.

h/t Cal Newport

Keep Your Identity Small

We struggle to think objectively about things that become part of our identity.

The more labels we give ourselves, the more emotionally we respond.

The best plan is to let as few things into your identity as possible.

Be nimble and hard to define.

Discipline Equals Freedom

”Discipline and Freedom seem like they sit on opposite ends of the spectrum, but they are actually very connected.

Freedom is what everyone wants.

But the only way to get to a place of freedom is through discipline.”

h/t @jockowillink

Procrastination Equation

To decrease procrastination:

  • Increase the expectancy of success
  • Increase the value and pleasantness of the task
  • Decrease impulsiveness by removing distractions
  • Decrease the delay of reward through deadlines

h/t @pierssteel

2-Minute Rule

“If an action will take less than two minutes, it should be done at the moment it’s defined.”

Don’t let small tasks add up and create a mental overhang.

Do it on the spot if <2-minutes, decline to action it, or schedule it for a specific future date.

The Forgetting Curve

Memories weaken over time.

If we learn something new, but then make no attempt to relearn that information, we remember less and less of it as the hours, days and weeks go by.

The way to combat this curve is through spaced repetition.

Tim Ferriss Discomfort Razor

Your success in life can be measured by the number of uncomfortable conversations you're willing to have.

Growth and comfort don't exist in the same room.

Act accordingly.

h/t @tferriss

The Never-Ending Now

We live in an endless cycle of ephemeral content consumption.

We’re a click away from the greatest authors of all time, from Plato to Tolstoy, but we default to social media and the news instead.

Consume wisely, or be consumed.

h/t @davidperell

The Faster Than Normal Newsletter

Join 70,000 others receiving timeless ideas to break from normal.

Delivered twice weekly to your inbox

Wednesday and Saturday

100% free

You're in!
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.
We won't send spam. Unsubscribe at any time.