TUES: Base Rates and Motivational Speaker Guy

What do the reasons why most New Year’s resolutions, the overwhelming majority of new businesses, and people learning a new instrument all fail have in common?

Base rates. Specifically, a lack of respect for their legitimacy when accurately predicting success. A base rate is simply the outside world’s proven likelihood of success for any venture you wish to pursue. For example, a proven base rate is that 80% of new restaurants will fail before two years. That’s fact. You can either ignore that based out of steadfast belief in yourself (or, misplaced ego), or you can heed it’s warning and adjust your plan accordingly.

Knowing and respecting that base rate that I have a 20% chance of success, I would set out to talk to someone with experience in that field. I would choose to seek out confirming information (someone who has succeeded) and disconfirming information (someone who has not), so that my plan is based out of balanced rationale and not filtered excitement. I would ask questions that ensured I wasn’t skewing my own excitement to give me the answers that I wanted.

How many hours a day did you work? What were your unexpected costs? Did this have a positive or negative effect on your family life? What was your income after five years? Why did your employees leave? At what point did you decide to close doors? When did you know that your restaurant was going to be successful?

Base rates and talking to those with experience re-calibrate our blind, baseless faith in ourselves and allow a realistic viewpoint of where we can head, ultimately netting success into a four part process.

  1. Assess your goal with your own views (strengths and weaknesses).
  2. Assess your goal with facts (base rates).
  3. Assess your goal with outside views (those who have succeeded and failed).
  4. Establish a game plan (aggregating the data). 

Ignoring base rates and those who have gone before you, simply put, is idiotic. Base rates are the megaphone of reason that should counter the voice of ego in your head. Understanding that in any high stakes pursuit, the statistical likelihood of success in usually against you. It just is. Base rates are not there to instill a sense of defeatism in yourself, but the people who succeed in high level endeavors are the ones who study base rates, talk to those who’ve been in their shoes, and then exploit all of the reasons for failure and hone in on the reasons for success.

There’s a reason the overwhelming majority of people leave Motivational Speaker Guy the exact same as they entered. A baseless proclamation of , “You can do this!” is appealing to low hanging emotional fruit and urges unprepared people to embark. Shame on them. Sensibly and methodically assessing your approach with data and inquisition is your most realistic outcome for success in any pursuit.


For More: Decisive, by The Heath Brothers

Tuesday, 4.24.18

First, for Strength.
2 Hang Clean + 2 Jerk
Complete 1 set every 4 min. for 16 min.

Then, for Conditioning.
20 Rope Waves / 20 Russian Twist Slams
20″ Bike
20 Mountain Climbers / Plyo Skaters
20″ Row
(x11 Min)