Volatility Equals Opportunity

Volatility may be disquieting but it create opportunity. Always has done, always will do. Whether in the financial markets or the dating marketplace, where there is confusion and turmoil you can be certain that someone somewhere is doing very nicely. The astute player learns to see volatility coming and use it to his advantage.

Right now volatility rules in the UK. A slim majority voted for us to leave the European Union – Brexit.. Our government, led by prime minister Theresa May, chose to draw the harshest possible inference from the vote – that the UK would have to leave the single market and the customs union too (not true). The mouthing off and general arrogance and unpreparedness of our elected representatives has caused consternation both in Brussels and UK, as well as in the wider world.

Theresa May then called a snap election in order to obtain a strong mandate for Brexit. This was rejected by the voting public who deserted the Tory party in droves. They failed to win a majority. Jeremy Corbyn—previously considered something of a joke—looked on the verge of taking Labour into Downing Street. May only held onto power by throwing a huge bung in the direction of the DUP, an Irish party with some fairly dubious views on abortion and gay rights and other matters.

The pound is falling. The city is looking at Parliament aghast. Wages are sluggish. Productivity is low. Banks are pulling jobs out of London. Interest rates have been kept low for the moment, but may be set to rise. Half of the population—the ‘remainers’— are very, very pissed off. The other half—the Brexiteers—are getting nervous that their pet project will be called off or derailed as a result of the growing carnage. Theresa May is on holiday and her cabinet are busy contradicting themselves in her absence. And that’s to say nothing of David Davis’s apparently inept performance so far against Michel Barnier in Europe.

Volatility rules. Many people are worried about the future of the country.. Perhaps it’s just me, but the downbeat mood feels palpable in London where the weather is relentlessly grim. Ironically this in stark contrast to the mainland where they are enjoying a heatwave.

It’s a clusterfuck and no one knows what’s going on or what might happen next. But in a sense this is the climate we have lived in for the whole of this young century. From 9/11 to Afgahnistan and Iraq to the financial crisis of 2008 to Trump, the 21st century so far has been characterised by uncertainty. Brexit merely exacerbates a pre-existing reality.

Has everyone lost out in the 21st century so far? No, of course not. There have been massive global successes. Mark Zuckerberg created Facebook and become a billionaire. Russell Brand won The Sun newspaper’s shagger of the year—twice. Whatever the macro-conditions— perhaps because of them—there are still people experiencing huge successes.

I am deeply disappointed about Brexit and the course that the UK is taking. However, as a wise man once said to me, there are only ever personal economies, by which he meant that you can still be personally successful regardless of what is happening around you. And actually, if there’s been one good thing to have come out of Brexit for me so far, it’s that it’s pushed me to make a decision—a huge, life-changing decision—that I’ve been putting off for some time. I’ll reveal more on this soon.

So how can you ensure that you are successful during times of volatility? There’s no sure-fire way, but for me the most important thing is to work out what my core skills are, i.e. what are the fundamental saleable abilities that are strongest in me? Saleable is the key word here. You need skills that you can monetise or get you laid, or both (photography, acting).

Once you’ve identified your key skills you need to home them through continuous practice. You should also take pains to keep abreast of all the latest developments in your specialist field.

Beyond that you need to be constantly learning. For many years I read game websites and forums obsessively. This helped me to develop great skills with women that got me a lot of sex. These days I still keep up to date with pickup material, but I also read a lot of business and marketing texts, since this is an area I’m keen to develop. If you are always learning then you will be better able to identify opportunities and to manipulate them in your favour.

At a minimum I would advise that you learn game and also one skill that you can sell (coding for example). Imagine you suddenly woke up in a foreign city with no cash or contacts. You want to be in a position where you’re confident you can get paid and laid within a fairly short amount of time.

I would also advise that you remain as mobile as you possibly can. That means both mobile bodily—through staying fit—and mobile geographically. For the first, go to the gym. For the second, don’t have too much stuff. Pare down. Practice minimalism, or intentionalism or whatever you want to call it. It’s debatable whether you should even own a property. Let’s face it, we live in a global society (whatever the Brexiteers would like to believe). It makes increasingly less sense to be stuck in one location when you can work from anywhere in the world with a laptop and an Internet connection.

And you should avoid getting tied down in a relationship if you can. I mean, look, it depends what you want, of course. But examine carefully what you think you want. So you’re with a girl. Is that because you really love her or is it because of expediency? Because you don’t want to be alone or to have to face the unforgiving sexual marketplace again?

Just be certain, because the more ties you have–emotional, and financial, the less agile you can be. And a volatile world demands agility above all else—-if you want to be successful in it, that is.

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