When people ask me for a framework to decide what to do in life, I ask them to imagine themselves in their 40s, and then ask what would their ideal life look like then

If they can’t think of anything, I ask them to think of a person who is in their 40s and whose life they admire the most

Then I ask them what are the aspects of this person’s life they admire and want to have

I did this exercise with a junior from college recently who was super confused about what to do next and was asking my opinion on whether to go for higher studies, stay at his current job or switch to a better paying one

His answer to my question was Patrick McKenzie; being able to work on cool stuff, have time to write, contribute to open source

All of a sudden it was clearer to him what he wanted in life

For me, instead of aspiring to live the life of a specific person, I think of the traits I want to have by the time I am 40

Some of them which I can think of right now are

  • Being strategic like Ben Thompson
  • Operating like Keith Rabois
  • Storytelling like Seth Godin
  • Being as fit as Rabois, who is not just a world class operator, but also a VC and a fitness enthusiast
  • Thinking and writing like Paul Graham

My aim is to close the gaps (where I am right now vs where I want to be) over the next decade or so

Thanks for reading!

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