The One Who Is Most Interested Is The One Who Wins
Benjamin Franklin Once Said…
That if two men are playing a game of chess, with the goal of winning prize money, and they both have equal ability, then the one who cares most about money will inevitably lose.
Because in this person’s desperation and eagerness, they will slip up and make mistakes.
In case you don’t remember the Audience-of-None, this is the empty theatre you’d still be happy to perform in even if:
- No one came to watch you
- No one paid you (no ticket sales)
- No one praised you (no applause).
This is the theatre where the only applause you listen out for in the end is your own. What this theatre does is strip back your extrinsic motivations and reveal your intrinsic drives. The fuel that comes from the unique you.
It asks you what you like doing for the simple sake of doing it, and not for any other reward or outcome.
Who Gets The Opportunities?
Imagine you were screening one hundred job applicants for an internship at your engineering company. Of the hundred applicants, only five have done work experience on a construction site, and indicated this on their CV.
All other things being equal, how likely is it that you’ll show preference to these five applications? It’s not so much that they have ‘experience’, but rather that they have shown they are interested in construction and engineering.
They might not be the people most interested, but they have something to show their interest. And interest as a fuel is sustainable and enduring because it replenishes energy through the act of doing the thing.
If you had to get paid to be motivated to do what you do, you would need payment reinforcing you at every stage. But interest on the other hand. But the artist in love with painting gains energy whilst she is painting, not afterward.
If you had a blog in which you shared your ideas from time-to-time, and were then to set up a project built on the back of those ideas, who might you ask to help you in that project? It might be the people who interact with your blog most often … that’s what I did.
That’s who gets the opportunities. Have you shown that you’re interested? How?
The One Who Is Most Interested, Is The One Who Wins
When it comes to Fraklin’s thought experiment on the chess game, for those of equal ability, the one least interested in money wins.
It is also true that when two people are put head-to-head, all things being equal, then the one who is most interested will be the one who wins. Two people in the same job, two people researching the same thing, two people playing the same sport.
How To Top Math When You’ve Never Topped Math Before.
When I was starting 12th grade at high school, my friend JB decided he was going to jump from the third highest class to the top class, and do what we call ‘Extension 2 Maths’. This was unheard of. Extension 2 Maths was notoriously hard, and was typically reserved for those students who had been in the highest maths class in 11th grade.
We thought it was ridiculous. But JB became interested. He would read maths books in the library for fun, take them home, and do complicated problems and proofs in his spare time. In my year group, there was a well established math duopoly — Luke and Leo were always top, it was only ever a question of who’d be first and who would be second.
In the final school exams, JB got the highest mark in Extension 2 Maths. Despite starting from way behind. He overtook us all. These days he is doing a PHD in Mathematics, solving a problem none of his high school friends can even understand. He continues to dive deep into the rabbit hole of what interests him.
And he will win.
Powered by the Waterfall
Powered by a flowing waterfall of interest, it is the one who is most interested who wins.
Be Interested In People
If there’s one lesson from Dale Carnegie’s classic book How To Win Friends And Influence People it’s this — if you want to prosper and rise up in the world, if you want to get what you want, first be interested in other people.
Interest and curiosity are pure — they harbor no hidden motive. Interest cannot be feigned over an extended period of time — JB cannot pretend to be interested in math and do better at it.
But if you become truly interested in people, the places you will go. From interest ensures love. Which brings me to my next point.
Be Interested In Yourself
If you’re not interested in yourself, why should anyone else be?
If you’re not interested in yourself, why should anyone be interested in promoting you?
If you’re not interested in yourself, why should anyone be interested in dating you?
If you’re not interested in yourself, why should anyone be interested in what you create?
If you’re not interested in yourself, why should anyone Open Doors for you?
Do interest mapping.
Passion is perishable, inspiration is impermanent, but interest is impregnable.