Edges: In Markets, In Life
Play to your strengths, don't waste time honing your weaknesses.
(P.S. If anyone is looking for ghostwriters / writers in general, DM me)
A few years back I watched a Garyvee clip (don’t hate me) that spoke a message which I still remember to this day. In the clip, he emphasized the importance of ignoring your weaknesses and focusing on your strengths. He says something along the lines of “You’re not Oprah, so why would you try to get better at singing?”
Obvious, right? Yet I still experienced a sort of epiphany, and to this day I still remember that clip. The moral of the story is:
Don’t try to get better at what you’re bad at. Instead, get really good at what you’re good at.
Discretion must be taken when heeding this advice. It doesn’t mean that if you’re not good at public speaking, you don’t bother trying to improve. There are certain skills that can be applied to all areas of your life that you should most definitely get good at.
Instead, the advice is more applicable to the type of work you’re doing, and the soft skills that let you excel at it. This is probably best illustrated with an example:
Joe is a talented analyst, with a knack for identifying good companies worth betting on, and a charisma that allows him to easily network in the finance sector. He, however, chose to study computer science and pursue a career as a developer simply because it paid more.
But as life goes on, Joe realizes that his peers far outclass him in terms of coding ability, and he gets promoted at a slower rate. He doesn’t like his job and thinks he should quit. In an alternate universe, Joe gets promoted extremely quickly in the finance sector just because of how good he is at it. Naturally, being good at something makes you like it.
What’s the lesson here? Joe sacrificed long-term career and satisfaction prospects for short-term monetary gains - he failed to consider his edge.
Edge In The Markets
The idea of an edge comes from the market. In an efficient market, every participant has access to the same information as the next participant, and as such everything should be priced at a level that reflects all available information. But as we know, markets rarely work this way. There’s always a type of edge you can gain over other market participants - something that you as a buyer know that sellers don’t, or vice versa.
It doesn’t really matter what your edge looks like - it can range from information asymmetry to having great risk management systems. What matters is that you know you have an edge, and you can prove that it’s an edge. This normally means that you show some sort of outperformance over time.
But one thing people don’t seem to understand is that edges fade with market conditions. Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results - you have to adjust your playstyle. But finding a playstyle that works in a low liquidity environment is extremely hard - that’s why people say that bear markets are for capital preservation, not capital outperformance. Only an extremely small percentage of the world can greatly outperform the bear.
My point is that as a trader, you have to know when to quit. Personally, I quit ever since I realized that what worked in the bull doesn’t work now / has too much effort for too little reward.
My style relies heavily on information asymmetry, and while I still get notifications on the potential of certain projects, they are few and far between. The expected value of my gains will not justify the effort put in.
As such, I shifted my time to more productive work instead - namely, writing and increasing my fiat. This is another point I would love to write an entire substack about: $1 today has greater potential than $1 tomorrow.
I really believe that we’re in a generational time to buy right now; stocks, crypto - you name it. $1 invested in whatever asset you like today will be worth way more in the future (assuming the asset you buy bounces back, which is another discussion in itself)
Just like how we get too euphoric at the top, we also tend to get overly negative at the bottom.
Edge In Life
The same concept can also apply to life. Remember Joe? Joe could have outperformed by honing his edge, but instead chose the route that he perceived at that time to be the “best”.
Don’t be Joe. Instead, go and do what you think you’re best at. Because you’re naturally good at it, it makes the learning curve much easier and makes it possible for you to be one of the best in the world at it.
Your edge can be anything - say you’re naturally extroverted. This makes you good at networking - so go do that, and soon you’ll be the guy who “knows everybody”. Everyone will come to you when they need favors, opening the door to greater opportunities.
This is a lesson I just learned, to be frank. I’ve realized that I’ve been spending way too much time trying to get better at what I’m bad at, when instead I should be zooming in on what I’m good at and trying to be the best at it.
So in typical fashion, I decided to write an article to share what I learned. I hope you learned something and don’t make the same mistake I did.
Thanks for reading Exit Liquidity - 0xKyle! Subscribe for free to receive new posts and support my work.
Yo this is dope, good read man. Also had that ingrained in my head from the big gazz, as much as it's a sin to watch him.
Hi Kyle, great article. I’ve also heard this saying from gary vee a while ago and more recently this year again in his latest book. The hard part I find is knowing what you’re really naturally good at especially if it soft skills (I think). I figured a good compass is to assume what I enjoy doing and have a strong desire to learn is a sign that I have some natural above average capabilities in that area. I’m curious what weakness were you trying to get good at?