Making Money Is Not About Making Money

Everybody is searching for the next “get rich scheme”, in a relentless quest which sometimes reminds me of the quest of the Holy Grail. Except the quality of the goal is slightly different, we’re not after eternal youth or complete redemption, as the Holy Grail promises, but mostly about comfort and predictability in this very life. Also, it’s more algorithmic than meritocratic, in the sense that you don’t have to prove yourself specifically in some way (courage, resilience, generosity), but mostly apply the correct sequence of steps. It’s like there is somewhere some sort of manual, some sort of precise algorithm that, when applied, will deterministically generate endless profit.

Some of these schemes include, but are obviously not limited to: selling on Amazon, teaching online courses, investing in cryptocurrencies, releasing mobile apps or launching a podcast. All have in common an algorithmic nature: you have to do things in a certain way, in a certain order, and only that will guarantee success.

Some of these algorithms actually work. In the sense that at the end of that Amazon selling course (that you bought for big bucks), and after you apply some of the teachings, you may end up with some profit.

But most of them don’t. It’s literally money wasted (or, if you want, they work only for those selling the algorithms, as in enriching them, not you).

In A Continuously Changing Environment, Fixed Schemes Are Doomed To Obsoletion

For the sake of the argument, let’s stick to those algorithms that “work”, though, let’s assume that selling on Amazon can actually make you rich, or that you launched a successful podcast and you finally make a lot of money off of advertising or sponsorships. Is it this actually “working”? How much of the success of your endeavor can be attributed to the algorithm, and how much to some serendipitous event, like just being there, with the right product, at the right time? And how easy is to replicate this event, once the market for the first one dries out?

The only thing that remains the same in this world is change. Everything changes, nothing really stays the same. And in a continuously changing environment, fixed schemes are doomed to obsoletion. That’s why “making money” is not about “proven” algorithms, fool-proof schemes or “little known secrets”.

It’s a lifestyle. It’s a way of living. Life continues to thrive by adjusting to new conditions, by following changes and adapting to it.

So “making money” means living fluidly, scheme-free, algorithm-free, but in a way that’s always better than yesterday.

And that’s a very different mindset.

The entropy of our Universe is so big, that we cannot integrate it into any predictable algorithm. All we can do is adjust. Of course, we can adjust in millions ways. We can adjust in a way that we will always be on the losing side of a trade, or we may adjust in a way that we will constantly position ourselves on the winning side of a trade. Or, at least, on a side that is neither losing or winning, just conserving energy and moving forward.

It’s an endless learning and applying cycle, one in which flexibility is the big upside, not the flawless following of fixed rules.

Photo by JOHN TOWNER on Unsplash

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