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Jul 02, 2019 08:46:35

hustle, life, and bernoulli trials

by @swizecteller | 307 words | 🐣 | 116💌

Swizec Teller

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I watched this short Casey Neistat video again this morning and it made me think about hustle. Does hustle actually lead to success, or is it all just luck?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L9VBpbnXhWk

The answer is yes, both. Lemme explain 👇

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In the video Casey makes a point that life is like going the wrong way on a conveyor belt. Stand still and move backwards. You gotta hustle to get ahead. Run faster than the belt.

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But does hustle actually work or is it just a platitude?

We live in a probabilistic universe so nothing is ever guaranteed. Luck plays a HUGE role. "Luck" doesn't mean what you think it means, however. You can create luck.

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Back in 1713 Bernoulli derived a formula for the expected outcome of a series of independent experiments. How likely are you to get at least N heads after flipping a coin K times?

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bernoulli_trial

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Here's the formula:

N over K multiplied by probability(heads)^K times probability(not_heads)^N-K

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Math is hard and this is 2019 so you can use Wolfram Alpha and iteration to figure out your chance of success.

Say each of your things has a 10% chance of going viral 👉 P=0.1, Q= 1-0.1 = 0.9

According to Bernoulli you can expect at least 1 success after 10 things with a 65% probability.

https://www.wolframalpha.com/input/?i=10+trials+p%3D0.1

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The same is true for everything you do. Applying for jobs, launching side projects, creating open source, founding startups, companies, or just cooking a fantastic meal.

Take probability of success, add hustle, use Bernoulli to see how long it takes :)

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Sure, life isn't quite a series of independent experiments 👉Your experience compounds, you learn stuff, you get more resources. Bernoulli trials are still a great framework to keep in mind.

The more often you try, the more likely you are to succeed.

Originally published at swizec.com

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