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Book Summary: The 10X Rule, by Grant Cardone

Article reading time: 11 min

Book reading time: 3 hours and 52 min

This book could be summarized by the following sentence written by the author in the middle of the book:

The 10X Rule requires that you take action in massive quantities and immediately.

That’s it. Success is achieved only by those willing to take more action than their peers.

This book explains how to do so.

Disregarding what you can think of Grant Cardone, this is a good self-help book, very practical, and quite motivating.

9/10.

Enjoy the summary!

Chapter 1: What Is the 10X Rule?

The 10X Rule is simply multiplying by 10 everything you do and think in your life. Doing so will guarantee that you reach some acceptable level of success.

For example. Do you want to make 1.5 million dollars? Then the 10X Rule obliges you to aim at making 15 million dollars instead.

Want to read 12 books a year? Scrap that, the 10X Rule demands that you plan to read 120 books a year.

The 10X Rule is simply thinking, working, and doing ten times the work that you would normally do.

Doing so, you create an extraordinary volume of action which leads to an extraordinary level of success.

Any goal you set will require work and will be difficult to achieve. 10X goals will only be marginally more difficult to achieve than normal goals, so why not aiming at 10X goals?

Coming short of making 100k is annoying. Coming short of making 10 million is still annoying, just…less annoying.


Chapter 2: Why the 10X Rule Is Vital

We often underestimate by a factor of 10 the amount of time and effort achieving a task will take. By de facto 10X-ing the action and work one invests into her goal, one massively increases the chances of success.

10X action and thinking enable one to go through immense hardships and disappointment by overcoming these traps with 10X efforts You are also less disappointed, surprised, and better prepared because whatever hardships you expect to go through is also 10Xed.

10X is an insurance policy against failure and quitting.

When people with big goals start noticing they won’t be able to achieve them, they often decrease the goal. You should never do that. Instead, you should 10X the level of action you had planned on taking.

Don’t decrease targets. Simply increase efforts.

If you start making excuses, then it just means you are not taking the appropriate level of action.


Chapter 3: What Is Success?

  • Success is important

Think of it as expansion. When you stop expansion, you collapse. This is why companies seek to expand again and again. Success is what enables the world to go round.

When the farmer is successful, he enables an entire city to eat. A world with no success would be a world of poverty and scarcity.


Chapter 4: Success Is Your Duty

  • Success is your duty

If you don’t make it an obligation, success will be harder to reach. Furthermore, success is your duty because success brings protection. Protection is needed in a world shaken by multiple crises at multiple times.

Look at success like an insurance policy. As such, you want to have an over-abundance of success so if something really bad happens, you are protected.

Treating success as an option is why most people fail at it. They don’t give everything they have got to get it. Success should be vital, it should be a matter of life or death.

Massive success created by massive action creates luck because it increases your opportunities to be lucky. As such, people don’t take action because they are lucky. They are lucky because they take massive amount of action.


Chapter 5: There Is No Shortage of Success

Most people see success as a zero-sum again. It’s not.

The number of pieces of bread the baker makes does not impact the number of suits the tailor can produce.

There is no shortage of success.

In fact, others’ success creates more opportunities for you to be successful! If your neighbor becomes a millionaire, you can start selling her new stuff!


Chapter 6: Assume Control for Everything

This chapter is about assuming responsibility. If you don’t make success your responsibility, you will not take the massive amount of action you need to reach it.

Success is not something that happens to you. It is something that happens because of you.

To become successful, you must understand and adopt the mindset that whatever happens to you is your fault. The electricity goes off? Your fault, you don’t have a generator.

By taking responsibility for everything, you can control everything and make sure things progress towards the direction you want to see them progress. Furthermore, you are better able to find solutions to problems when you estimate these problems are yours and yours to solve.

Never be a victim. Good things don’t happen to victims. No one wants to go into a business with someone who’s written “victim” on their business cards. Never assume the position of victim.

Always act. Never be acted upon.

Success isn’t a journey. It’s a state. You are whether creating success, or you are not.


Chapter 7: The Four Degrees of Action

Many people are looking for quick fixes and shortcuts.

There are no shortcuts.

Extraordinary success = extraordinary action.

When something happens or needs to happen, you can take four different levels of action:

  • Do nothing
  • Retreat
  • Take normal levels of action
  • Take massive action

Do nothing

Despite appearances, do nothing is a lot of work. If you don’t pay the bills, you’ll have to pay a higher amount later, or will have your possessions seized. If you don’t exercise, you will grow old unhealthy, which will be a lot of work and pain. If you do nothing at your job, you’ll get fired and will have to find another one, which is a lot of work.

Retreat

People retreat because they are scared to fail or to succeed. Retreating though is not human. When a baby learns to walk, it doesn’t retreat. he keeps on trying until he succeeds.

Retreating also demands a certain level of action, usually in justifying reasons to retreat.

Normal levels of action

Most people take normal levels of action which gets them just that: normal results, average success. Is average good? No. Who wants to see an average movie with average actors? Nobody.

Massive action

Massive action is in fact the de facto level of action. Look at kids, they are constantly taking action. Look at wildlife, it is constantly moving around.

Massive action is reached once your action creates bigger, new types of problems to take care of (1) and once you start receiving criticisms (2).

Quantity is better than quality. Just take massive action, that is the only thing that cannot hurt you.


Chapter 8. Average Is a Failing Formula

Average is doomed to fail because average does not acquire enough success to survive in downtimes. Average enables one to survive with “just enough”, and “just enough” isn’t “enough”.

Furthermore, average doesn’t sell. You want to buy the best product, date the best girl/guy, get the best house. Not the average product, average girl/guy, average house.

Furthermore, do you think you will be entitled to the best if you are average?


Chapter 9: 10X Goals

The reason why people fail at their goals is that the goals are too small. They fail at them because they are not excited enough to fulfill them. Making 100k is meh. Making 10 million is much more motivating!

These big goals maintain your focus and enthusiasm. They break through the resistance. As such, the advice of this chapter is simple. 10X all of your goals.

One of my goals for half of this year was to read 12 books. Now, I have to read 120 books (20 books a month lol). I know I won’t make it, BUT I will read MORE than my original 12 books goal.

Your goals are so important that you should write them daily, and the goals you write should be out of your reach. This is how you progress: by reaching out of your comfort zone to make that area…your comfort zone, before racing even further.

Another thing about goal setting is that you should know WHY a goal is your goal.

Do you want 100 million in your bank account? Good. FOR WHAT??? If you don’t have any reasons, you won’t be motivated to hustle your way to 100 mils.

You need to set goals aligned with what you want. Don’t go find goals in other people’s diaries – it won’t work.

  • Set goals for yourself
  • Anything is possible
  • You have more potential than you think
  • Success is your duty
  • There is no shortage of success
  • Whatever you do, it will require work

Chapter 10: Competition is for Sissies

Originally, I thought Cardone had stolen this principle from Peter Thiel’s Zero to One.

He didn’t. 10X came out 3 years before Zero to One. Anyway.

Competition is lame. It stifles you. It forces you to evolve in your competitors’ paradigm – and you often end up losing.

You should never compete, but dominate. Don’t copy, create. Don’t follow, lead. Don’t respect the pace, set the pace.

You dominate by applying a two-steps plan: first, decide you will dominate. Then, do what others will not do. You dominate by doing what everyone refuses to do. This creates for you an unfair advantage enabling you to crush the competition entirely.

NEVER PLAY by the agreed norms and rules. They are boxes trapping original ideas and preventing them from getting out.

Basically, take any action to such a level that it will separate you and your company from the rest.


Chapter 11: Breaking out of the Middle Class

Don’t try to break into the middle class. It’s the most trapped social group within society.

  • Middle-class income isn’t enough to attend to an emergency situation.
  • Middle-class thinking embodies average. They do what is necessary – they never go big.
  • The middle class is being squeezed – by inflation on one hand, and taxes on the other (the poor don’t have money to pay taxes and the rich evade them, so…).

Chapter 12: Obsession Isn’t a Disease – It’s a Gift

Before you dominate a market, you must dominate your thoughts, mindsets, and interests. Obsession is not bad – it is a requirement to get where you want to go.

There isn’t a single successful person in this world that wasn’t obsessed with their goals.

Nothing bad will ever happen to you if you stay obsessed with your goals.


Chapter 13: Go “All-In” and Overcommit

Going all-in means giving 110% of everything you have got to everything you do.

Overcommitting is saying “YES” and THEN only figuring out how to do it.

This is by creating new problems for yourself that you grow. It’s also one of the biggest signs that you are taking 10X action.


Chapter 14: Expand – Never Contract

Survival rests on expansion. Empires that stopped expanding eventually collapsed. The Japanese economy is stagnating as people are not having any babies anymore.

In some situations, it may be counterintuitive (economic crisis). And yet, expanding is your sole and unique purpose. Make more money, hire more employees, penetrate more markets…

In a way, the best time to expand is when others are contracting, as this is when they are at their most vulnerable point.


Chapter 15: Burn the Place Down

When you start getting some results, DON’T REST. Keep on adding wood to the fire until the fire is so big it can’t be extinguished.


Chapter 16: Fear Is a Great Indicator

You will experience fear. If you don’t, it means you are not taking enough action.

Fear is good because it means you are doing stuff you were not doing before – it is a sign of progress!

The best way to deal with fear is to take time out of the equation. The longer you wait, the worse the fear will get, the less likely you will act. By taking time out, you must do immediately that which you experience fear for.

Fear is nothing but a sign that you should do immediately what you are afraid to do. By taking action on what you fear, you will be the one that advances the most, which will enable you to dominate the market.


Chapter 17: The Myth of Time Management

The first thing you should do is prioritize the actions that will make you successful in your schedule.

The second thing is to forget about balance. Balance enables you to have a bit of everything. It’s lame. You want to have a lot of everything.

Furthermore, the only way to create more time is to get more things done in a shorter amount of time.

You will be able to see where all of your time has gone by tracking it. Log everything you do during the day and check it every week.


Chapter 18: Criticism Is a Sign of Success

Whatever you do, you will be criticized. Which is good. It means you are getting attention, which means you are becoming successful.


Chapter 19: Customer Satisfaction Is the Wrong Target

Your customers must be satisfied, sure.

But you can’t satisfy them if you don’t have any.

As such, customers acquisition is what you should focus on.

Businesses that fail are not businesses whose clients are dissatisfied. They are businesses that don’t have any clients in the first place.

So focus on getting more clients, and simply practice 10X to over-deliver once you have them.


Chapter 20: Omnipresence

Omnipresence means “being present everywhere”.

That’s what you should aim at. It is impossible to be successful if you don’t think global and universal.

The most valuable things exist in abundance around us: oxygen, water, food, electricity, the Internet. They are accessible everywhere, and you see them constantly. Same thing for the most profitable companies (Apple, Google, Microfost, McDonald’s…).

This is the mindset you should get: you want people to think about you as frequently as possible.


Chapter 21: Excuses

An excuse often is something different than it pretends it is.

If your excuse for being late is the traffic, it’s not the traffic that got you late. It’s because you didn’t wake up early enough.

To quote directly from the book:

Excuses are for people who refuse to take responsibility for their life and how it turns out. Slaves and victims make excuses—and will forever be destined to having leftovers and others’ scraps.

The first thing to know about excuses is that they are not moving you forward. The second thing is to know which ones you use so you can spot them and crush them – or at least, take initiative to stop doing them.

Successful people don’t use excuses. They make it work.

Nothing happens to you. It happens because of you. It is only when you start taking responsibility for yourself to fix the problem instead of coming up with the excuse that you will be able to find success.

If you are going to be massively successful, you must commit to never use any excuse ever again.

“If it is to be, it is up to me”.


Chapter 22: Successful or unsuccessful?

This chapter lists the traits of successful people.

  1. Have a “can do” attitude
  2. Believe that they will figure it out
  3. Focus on opportunity: don’t look at problems as obstacles. Look at what you can gain from solving them (skills, experience, money).
  4. Love challenges
  5. Seek to solve problems
  6. Persist until successful
  7. Take risks: great returns = great risks. It’s in these situations that you make it big.
  8. Be unreasonable: act without reason. If you act with reason – upon agreed reality – you will never achieve what seems impossible.
  9. Be dangerous: it means “don’t play it safe”. You can’t achieve 10X results without embracing danger.
  10. Create wealth: The successful know the money has already been created – and that they can earn it by creating new products and services.
  11. Readily take action
  12. Always say yes
  13. Habitually commit: there is a huge shortage of commitment.
  14. Go all the way: Half measures achieved us nothing
  15. Focus on “now”: you create your future now. Unsuccessful people spend their lives in the past.
  16. Demonstrate courage: courage is acting in spite of fear. As such, the only way to be courageous is to take action.
  17. Embrace change
  18. Determine and take the right approach: Successful people focus on effectiveness and efficiency. Unsuccessful focus on “hard work”. Successful want to find the right approach and don’t stop until it works. Unsuccessful achieve volume of work that creates no value.
  19. Break traditionnal ideas: Eg: Crypto, the iPhone, etc
  20. Be goal-oriented: pay attention to the target – not the problem. Don’t write your goals once a year – write them everyday.
  21. Be on a mission: while most people do jobs, successful people live theirs like a life or death mission.
  22. Have a high level of motivation: the only way to do so is to keep on having reasons to be motivated (meaning creating ever bigger goals).
  23. Be interested in results: Successful people value results above all else. Not work, not time, not efforts.
  24. Have big goals and dreams
  25. Create your own reality: then hustle to make it real so that others can enjoy it too
  26. Commit first – figure out later: this is how you create formidable success
  27. Be highly ethical: don’t break the law, don’t be dishonest, and do everything you can to succeed
  28. Be interested in the group: help other people succeed
  29. Be dedicated to continuous learning
  30. Be uncomfortable
  31. Reach up in relationships: surround yourself with people better than you
  32. Be disciplined

Chapter 23: Getting Started With 10X

How do you start with all of this?

  • Do not reduce your goals
  • Do not get lost in the details on how to accomplish them
  • Take action that will move you towards the goal
  • Do not value the outcome of the action

Beware of friends and family that would seek to bring your desires down.

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