You'll see a theme in history - armies that train for "worst case scenario" eventually kick the hell out of armies they don't. Command and control based armies, that only fight well in formation, tend to do really well until their ranks get broken. Then they get slaughtered.
If you look at George Washington or Napoleon Bonaparte, their forces knew how to fight out of formation. That's why they were able to win important battles against larger, more well-equipped forces. They stirred up a bunch of chaos because their forces were able to handle chaos better than the enemy.
I think if you want to do creative endeavors like writing, painting, whatever - you need to learn to fight out of formation. By that, I mean you need to learn how to do it without having "formal expert tone" or being highly polished. Ideally, you can communicate well without necessarily obeying grammar and punctuation. After all, the point of writing is to communicate - the language is supposed to serve you, you're not supposed to serve it.
It takes a lot longer to get into formation if you're out of it than to just fight slightly wild and crazy. Of course, you should learn discipline and how to fight in formation, and should be able to do well in that role. It might even be your bread and butter. But if you're editing every memo you send, every blog post you write, every rallying talk or speech you give - then you're burning a lot of time.
Yes, fighting in formation produces better results much of the time. But sometimes ranks get broken, and then you're screwed if it's the only way you know. I think it's better to learn to fight out of formation before you ever need to. The quality of out-of-formation output is going to be lower at first than in-formation output. You need to learn how to deal with a chaotic messy environment. It doesn't have to be the only way you do things; in fact, sometimes you ought to use proper grammar and punctuation. But you also should be able to handle not doing it, just throwing things together with commas and dashes, slapping some rough thoughts down, and figuring it'll turn out okay. As long as what you're saying is clear enough, you don't have to bow to formality.
I'd say this is probably true in any discipline that doesn't have life-and-death consequences - there's a highest level, most correct way of doing things. That way produces better results, and is superior if you're in the right frame of mind and environment to do it.
But sometimes you're not in the frame right of mind, or you're in the wrong environment, and you don't have enough time to form up. In that case, much better to just bang something out and run with it. And if you make a habit of learning to fight out of formation, you get better at it, and can do it more and more over time.
I did the audiobook so writing style gets lost a bit. Probably a bit light and unbalanced for a true history. But I loved the way he stuck to the letters and diaries that were his source. Some powerful insights being plugged straight into the thoughts and words of these men.
Spoken like a true hacker.
Just finished 1776. Great book. Very personal view into the world of George Washington and the Continental Army over the course of that great year. I never realized how close our country came to never being born so many times. It really was Washington's perseverance and grit, and the same in the American's he led, that won that year for us.
Bravo to you good sir!
Good questions from a reader -
There are some questions I want to ask you about the shogun era.
Why didn't the generals around Tokugawa Ieyasu aim for more power?
What were their end game?
First of all, this blog is about our lives, the problems we all face that limit us and decrease our performance bringing stress and anxiety along the way, It's about all those promises that never seemed to work, about our bad habits and the good ones. And what we can do to improve yourself and lead a happier, more successful, more enjoyable life and most importantly, the life that each of us wants_each in his unique way. A lot of us feel that our surroundings _and desires_ manipulate us and act mostly against our own benefits but we could never have power over them. You weren't meant to be the slave of those things, you were rather meant to be the master , the one who controls this everlasting conflict between good and bad. The conflict where the bad forces always seem to be stronger. The aim of this project is to help me and you reach our limits and go beyond them, to be the best version of ourselves we can possibly can. We all experience those problems, even the best ones always feel they could be doing better.
To eliminate the major problems that restrict our progress by investigating them and understanding their elements, not just laying the “magic 5 techniques” without really understanding where they've come from.
First , I would like to introduce my philosophy on why we should do our best.
Watching life around us, we find that that's how everything in the universe works. God created all his creatures acting by instinct, and with their instinctive behaviour they always reach their limits doing as much as they can. How much tall will a tree grow? As much as it possibly can. How much do ants do to survive? Everything they can possibly do. If you block an ant's path to a certain destination, it'll go searching for another until it dies. If you block one side of a tree it'll grow all its branches on the other side. Human body grows to the maximum it can reach. All creatures were programmed to behave and think this way, only human beings were given the privilege of choice, the freedom.They are the only creatures that can freely choose to settle for less. But you can’t have freedom alone, freedom is always in proportion with responsibility, otherwise there are no limits to that freedom. And we've got a big one in our hands, humans are in charge of this Earth, they are the only creatures that can make it a better or worse place, each and everyone of us contributes to either. And I guess then, all humanity should be great people simply doing what they’ve got to do, but why isn't it like that? Because it doesn’t work that way; the presence of of responsibility requires obstacles and hurdles. Finishing a task isn't an accomplishment unless there were obstacles that you overcame. Those obstacles create the accomplishment and the superiority of the one who overcomes them.
When we understand this equation we learn to watch out for the obstacles, to study them to be able to overcome them. We learn to appreciate the freedom we have by committing to our responsibilities, and making the world better through making ourselves better. The world needs a BETTER YOU.