15 Fascinating Things I Learned From Studying the Greatest People in History

The life stories of the greatest people in history are full of wisdom.

By reading about their trajectories, you can examine efficient aspects of their mindsets and principles.

These emerging puzzle pieces help to fill the holes within your own personal philosophy, allowing you to move towards realizing your optimal value with confidence.

While there are many different approaches to playing the game of life, the most effective strategies revolve around certain unchangeable truths.

Here are some noteworthy life lessons I learned from studying the greatest people in history:

1. You Aren’t Bound By Your Circumstances

Many of history’s most influential figures were born into less than desirable circumstances such as poverty. Although their early externalities brought great strife and suffering into their lives, they managed to overcome by recognizing the inherent impermanence of all situations. This strong resilience of willpower allowed them to assert their inner-value over their surroundings.

2. You’re Entirely Responsible For Your Results

Every biography I’ve read stresses the importance of personal responsibility.

If you wait around for other people to realize your goals, life will pass you by. The more you take things into your own hands, the more you will be able to create the lifestyle of your dreams.

While other people can play pivotal roles in the construction of your empire, it’s ultimately your task to sketch out the blueprint.

Nobody even knows what it is that you would like to achieve until you start to take action. If you don’t live like a high-value man, then you must not truly desire high-value results.

3. If Someone’s Doing Better Than You, He’s Doing Something You Aren’t

Observing the methodology of success is a shortcut towards realizing your own. This lesson could also be construed as the importance of acquiring a mentor.

Some of our instructors only stay with us for a momentary period of time, while others stay for decades. When the torch is passed and the lessons have been learned, it is time for you to move on and make use of your knowledge.

4. In Order To Get Something, You Have To Look As If You Already Have Something

This is the contradiction of life. Things are attracted to you based on what you ARE, instead of what you’d like to be.

When you carry yourself in a relaxed/self-assured manner, people treat you with respect. On the other hand, exuding desperation will have people take advantage of you.

Such is the nature of the concrete jungle.

You should strive to become the genuine human equivalent of your ideal externalities.

5. Appeal To Peoples’ Egotistic Fantasies

The ego is a fascinating entity.

When you treat people of influence in a way that strokes their fantasies, they’ll greatly appreciate your presence.

What this comes down to is EXPRESSING VALUE in a manner that suits the situation.

It’s an important ability to consistently make your associates and clients feel like a million bucks. The purpose of bringing good vibes to high-value environments is to forge lucrative connections.

6. Choose Initiates Of Your Circle With Time And Care

The influences that you surround yourself with have the greatest impact on your perspective due to their proximity. Your predominant social group reflects a certain sense of self back at you. With time, this identity slowly becomes normalized.

It’s of utmost importance that you choose these people wisely, because their attributes rub off onto your own disposition. If your group is low-value, their constant negativity and failure to assume personal responsibility will unnecessarily contribute weight to your perceived limitations.

7. Success Is A Mindset As Well As A Destination

Every person who eventually found external success first realized abundance within the mind. The power of a high-value mentality is that it allows you to react appropriately to external conflict. The difference between where you begin and where you end up has everything to do with HOW YOU NAVIGATE.

8. What You Feed Your Mind Is What You’re Molding Yourself To Be

You are the amalgam of the influences you expose yourself to (media, books, ideas, social energy, etc.). When you become more selective of what you consume, you start to engineer a particular result.

By cultivating your mind, you cultivate your reality. You can’t expect to achieve greatness when you constantly fill your brain with toxicity and low value.

9. It’s Better To Pursue A Great Good To Come At The Expense Of A Small Present Evil

Everything in life has its price.

In order to make something of yourself, you have to be willing to make an according investment.

Great results are forged with small sacrifices (i.e. less of a social life while building a business). The inverse of this life lesson is that habitual hedonism will create massive problems in your future.

As always, the choice is yours.

10. Personal Power Isn’t Seized – It’s *Accepted*

Much of realizing your personal power comes from discovering what NOT TO DO. When you come to terms with the value within, you lose the need to impress.

In my own life, I developed my social dominance by shedding past limitations instead of posturing to be someone else. This distinction is subtle, but pronounced.

11. When You’ve Done Something Once, It’s Very Easy To Do It Again

Your successes insert themselves into your personal narrative. When you become the type of person who can do “that”, your perception of opportunity changes.

It’s a lot easier to take action when you’re confident you’ll get good results. At the same time, the only way to get over this initial learning curve is to possess the strong inner-game to keep trying.

It’s a classic catch 22.

Confidence solidifies when you grow accustomed to powering through rejection. There’s no other way to bypass this process.

12. Nothing Significant Can Be Achieved Without Consistency

Bigger goals require bigger commitment.

If you want to become more than exceptional, you’ll have to continually assert your will against the grindstone of the external world. Consistency is the result of discipline, which is a key trait in all successful people.

13. Place Your Principles Above Your Immediate Surroundings

In order to find success, you must first become the type of person who carries himself in a valuable way.

Never forget, your lifestyle is a function of your principles. Living by a weak code makes you a weak person.

If you disrespect the game, it’ll bite you in your ass.

A high-value individual places his principles above the fleeting temptations around him. After all, he understands that long term results are of much greater importance than the indulgence of temporary pleasures.

14. Character Is Only Learned Through Experience

This life lesson alludes to the all-important reference points that you must internalize before the root of success is truly understood.

We all interpret the world through the lens of our prior experiences, and thus shut ourselves off to contexts that are less tangible. No one can be forced to understand something that their mind isn’t prepared to digest.

You have to be burned enough times to realize that the stove is hot.

Even then, some people will be too tempted by its bright red color to avoid its hazard.

15. Opportunities And Growth Come Through People

No man is an island.

Even the most introverted of us need social contact to stay sane. Living in isolation for extended periods of time is the equivalent of hoarding wealth (scarcity mentality). All the various currencies within your life (both physical and metaphysical) must circulate in order for you to realize maximum well-being.

We are tribal creatures for a reason.

Closing Thoughts

There are many other life lessons to be learned from studying men of value, but these are the ones that stuck out to me the strongest.

By modeling your own life/philosophy after tried-and-true principles for success, you’ll see far greater opportunities all around you. When you think in terms of value, you’re more likely to act in terms of value.

Even the slightest changes in your mindset can lead to significant external re-arrangements.

The real question is, do you truly want to live a high-value lifestyle?

P.S. Read “Seeking Wisdom – From Darwin To Munger“.


YES! I want to join the winner's circle. Please send updates to the following email address (at no cost to me)


  1. […] of influences. Ideas build off of one another. Parts of reality are reflected throughout the whole. The greatest people throughout history understood this concept very well. They blended their influences into seemingly original creations. I use the word seemingly because […]

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *