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Circle of Competence Issue #122


"The state of your mind is the state of your world." - Naval


I recorded an episode with Michael Girdley this past week on his work at Dura Software, creating scalable processes and scalable businesses, executive coaching, and more that I'm very excited to share next week. Based on my limited time as a new parent and working a full time job, I've decided that the best cadence for releasing podcast episodes will be every 2 weeks. This will allow me to focus 1) on finding great guests to interview 2) to prep sufficiently for each interview and 3) to focus more on my newsletter (reading and sharing) on a weekly basis.

As for future podcast episodes, I'm thrilled about the guests scheduled for the next few weeks:

- Mohnish Pabrai (Pabrai Funds)

- Brent Beshore (Permanent Equity)

- Trish Higgins (Chenmark)

- Michael Arrietta (Garden City)

- Shirin Kanji (Impact Properties)

- Henry Kaestner (Sovereign's Capital)

And I am working on adding a few more to the pipeline. Stay tuned!

Speaking of focus, this concept has become much more important and dear to me after the birth of my first child. The beauty of having a child is that you are able to much more easily say 'no' to things that don't matter because you have an easy out - your time quickly becomes scarce! When you have the power to say 'no', you are saying 'yes' to what matters most to you (family in my case). This is the highest form of wealth and many have access to it, but don't have the discipline to be able to say no, and therefore forfeit their rights to this type of wealth and freedom. As I shared in a tweet earlier:

"If you don't prioritize your life, someone else will."



Sounding good or doing good? A skeptical look at ESG (Aswath Damodaran)

Banks pile into treasurys, helping to fund government spending spree (Wall Street Journal)

Acquisitions Anonymous discusses a vertical SaaS business, an engineering firm, and a painting contractor business (Acquisitions Anonymous)

Bill Ackman's thoughts on the 2020 SPAC boom (Institutional Investor)

Real Estate

Public & Private Real Estate Valuations (Evergreen Research)

August rent report for NYC hospitality (NYC Hospitality Alliance)

US housing supply nears 40 year low (The Real Deal)

Analyzing apartment building offerings like a pro (Think Multifamily)


What does a vertical farm taste like? (The Counter)

The secret to change? Crisis. (Perceptions)

Ping An to spin off and float ‘unicorns’ worth some US$82 billion (South China Morning Post)

Geopolitics and Economics

Welcome to the turbulent twenties (Noema Mag)

WTF happened in 1971? (

Going to extremes - politics after financial crises (European Economic Review) - H/T Jamie Catherwood

The Market Impact of US Presidential Elections (Winton Capital) H/T Jamie Catherwood

Tensions high, altitude higher: logistical and physiological constraints on the Indo-Chinese border (War on the Rocks)

The history of ancient universities (Via Appia)

Lex Fridman interviews Ryan Hall: Martial Arts and the Philosophy of Violence, Power, and Grace (Lex Fridman Podcast)

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