This Week I Learned #10

“Go to bed smarter than when you woke up”
— Charlie Munger


  • Wise: Peter Drucker's Effective Executive is a short read of under 200 pages. Yet, I find myself stuck on a page scribbling notes down non-stop. I initially felt the book would be outdated but to the contrary. It actually encompasses so many of the ideas that a singular book in recent years makes you read 400 pages to get when Drucker's single chapter is suffice. The continued learning on the value of finding 50-100 or so books that you'd be willing to re-read again and again because of the value they present rather than read 100 new books that won't provide the same ROI. 


  • Healthy: Fasting. Your body burns fat when in fasted state. How? Because fasting lowers body's need for sugar so the body will lower the blood sugar level. This will teach muscles to use fat as the main energy source when in fasted state. The brain needs sugar so it will learn to use the Ketone created in our body to feed itself. Any form of weight loss will reduce muscle. Leaner people will lose more muscle in relation to fat compared to obese people. Obvious. But fasting results in less muscle lost compared to calorie-restrictive diets because fasting creates counter-regulatory hormones that actually aid in growth of lean muscle. Muscle loss is defined as death of protein, which occurs via autophagy. Autophagy is the elimination of junk cells in the body and it can actually kill off the junk proteins like excess skin, and the shit clogging up your brain (which leads to Alzheimer). So unlike diets that see decreases basal metabolic rates after 6 months, leading to fast failures of calorie-restrictive diets, fasting doesn't impact the basal metabolic rate and it results in less muscle loss, better organ health (i.e. brain, skin etc..) and improved psychological health.


  • Healthy: We have two circadian rhythms. One led by the brain, which impacted by light. One led by the organs, impacted by food triggering metabolism. As our body turns off and goes to sleep we burn our fat stores for energy and when we are awake we burn carbs and store the rest as energy. When we exercise our body burns carbs as energy then and burns the storage for the recovery of the damage done to our body. The recovery process is essential for building up strong immune systems too to fight off diseases. To aid the brain regulate the circadian rhythm lowering blue light exposure at night and replacing with dimmed lights and sleeping total darkness would help. For the body, keeping the feeding window to at least 12 hours would be good. Turns out most people have a 15 hour feeding cycle with the morning coffee and the late night snack and this practically stops your body from ever going into recovery and burning any fat stores. This is also why intermittent fasting has seen many of the benefits of regulating the circadian clock. Dr. Satchin Panda's research on time-restricted eating has actually been a major reference point for many intermittent fasting advocates. Here is his Ted talk on circadian rhythms:


  • Wealthy: "If Apple is worth $1trillion and your family's net worth was $4trillion would you use 25% of your net worth to own Apple? If yes, then buy the stock. If not, then no.". "If you are going to sell compounders, don't sell it when it's fairly priced. Don't sell it when it's overpriced. Sell it when it's outrageously priced. You'll know. It'll be too obvious" Listening to Mohnish Pabrai is always a treat. He's sold out of his US stocks and now only hold European and Indian companies and this has been a good insight into some of his Indian holdings.


  • Wealthy: Prem Watsa has been popularly referred to as the Warren Buffet of Canada given many similar facets like Fairfax's business model and Prem's style as an investor. But, I think Constellation Software's Mark Leonard should get some recognition for having some of the best shareholder letters I've ever read, next to Buffet's. Many of my friends will know that I've been a fan of Mark for a number of years and have been a happy shareholder of Constellation. I recently read a summarizing piece of Mark Leonard by Tren Griffin and it too has been a great read that helped me structure out my own learnings.


  • Wise: "The unexamined life is not worth living" - Socrates. 100% accurate. 


  • Wise: Introspection is heavily underrated in society. I place great importance on introspection, as can be obvious by the quote that I pondered on all day yesterday. In a podcast with April Rinne, global citizen specializing in microfinance, I had a chance to get glimpse into a phenomenal career journey I hope to replicate in my own life. An exercise she mentioned intrigued me and I immediately took up to doing it. Exercise: Write down all your life goals onto post-it notes and stick them up on the wall. Don't think about LinkedIn titles for they aren't truly life goals. Think about the bigger picture goals you'd like to walk your life path professionally. Then stare at it and see how a picture forms from your brainstorm. This has been a fun exercise for me and I'd recommend you try!

Daniel LeeTWIL