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Your Cheerful Price

I think many people view friendship as a form of alliance. Ally friends perform favors for each other as a way to tie tighter bonds between them and signal that their goals are aligned. I want to bake you a cake for exactly $0 because baking a cake will help you and I want what's best for you so helping you directly helps me. So in the future, after I bake you your cake, you of course will drive me to the airport because that would help me and you want what's best for me right? It's not a direct scratch-my-back-and I'll-scratch-yours exchange of favors, it's developing a strong alliance between our interests. We can then rely on that alliance for mutual assistance in the future. The two most common danger ally-friends are on the lookout for are 1) over-reliance by their friend; and 2) mere burden shifting from their friend.

  1. Over-reliance is when Bob always asks his lawyer friend Alice for legal advice and for her opinion on complicated topics. Alice spends hours of her time (that she could otherwise use to bill $400/hour) on these favors yet Bob doesn't provide her even half of the value that she gives him. Bob's reliance on Alice is still efficient, it's much easier for her to do the legal research than him, but Bob is not putting in enough to get what Alice is giving him. Alice will eventually grow resentful of Bob and stop doing favors for him entirely.

  2. Burden shifting is when Alice and Bob are both friends of equal cooking ability yet Alice still asks Bob to cook her cakes. The amount of effort expended by either to make the cake is exactly the same so Alice having Bob cook is no more efficient for the alliance than if she cooked the cake herself. Bob notices this and asks why Alice doesn't cook the cake herself. If Alice can convince him that somehow it is more efficient for Bob to cook the cake the alliance can continue. If Bob can't be convinced he will stop cooking cakes because why the hell was he even cooking them in the first place?

But attempts to pay an ally friend for their favors is a whole other unexpected issue that can even seem like betrayal. Ally friends would dislike your way of offering them money in exchange for a favor because that would imply that when they seek a favor from you, you would expect money in return! Then to them there never was any alliance between you at all. From their perspective, you offering them money in exchange for a favor is tantamount to admitting that you were actually just pretending to be their friend the whole time.

How do I improve at being strategic?

I'm glad you appreciate the advice. It seems to me that you've developed a very effective, structured way to improve your productivity and I'm going to try to emulate your strategy here with a few upcoming projects I have to work on and see how efficient I'm being.

The 10,000-Hour Rule is a myth

I find this to be a severely lacking refutation of Gladwell's point. The main argument being that Ericsson, who collected the data which Gladwell cites to, disagrees with his point. Seeing that the average expert has 10,000 hours of practice in their field a reasonable conclusion is that you should try to practice 10,000 hours if you want to become an expert. Just because Ericsson disagrees with that doesn't mean it's not a perfectly reasonable conclusion.

How do I improve at being strategic?

The first step that Anna points out is "Ask ourselves what we're trying to achieve" or in other words, know your goal. Since you have a desire to be more strategic you probably already have a goal in mind and realized that being more strategic would be an effective subgoal. From the rest of your post I think you've substantially worked on some of the other steps as well.

If you're struggling fulfilling the rest of the steps Anna laid out my recommendation is to just do things which may work towards achieving your goal that are very outside your comfort zone. That will pull you out of your pre-existing habits and get you to start evaluating different strategies instead of continuing to follow the strategy you've already worked yourself into.

If you're a procrastinator, start working on something that's a long term goal immediately for at least a few hours without breaks even if you start to think it might not be effective. If you think it's not effective that may be because of akrasia taking over once you actually start working on it.

If you are fearful of offending people go to an online or in person marketplace and start low-balling people with ridiculous offers and continually press them to make a deal favorable to you. Make the situation uncomfortable enough and you'll realize you have the ability to deal with the social awkwardness when you're trying to work towards your goal.

This is Anna's step e and I encourage working on this step because from your post it seems like you've already put good work into everything that comes before it.

My bad if this is more of tactics rather than the strategy tips you were looking for.

Saying "Everyone Is Biased" May Create Bias

This formulation of evidence completely disregards an important factor of bayesian probability which is that new evidence incrementally updates your prior based on the predictive weight of the new information. New evidence doesn't completely eradicate the existence of the prior. Individual facts do not screen off demographic facts, they are supplementary facts that update our probability estimate in a different direction.

RationalWiki on face masks

Your point would be correct if the recent bans were about hate speech and calls to violence. The claim that recent bans were solely about hate speech and calls to violence however is factually incorrect and therefore your point is wrong. The most popular banned topic of discussion is the validity of the 2020 election, an epistemological question. Very nonviolent and non-hatey figures such as Ron Paul are banned without any stated reasons.

The 4-Hour Social Life

Easier solution: wait until a person who is following Isusr's strategy weeds you out and bam you have your equally extraordinary match. The only failure states are when Isusr's strategy doesn't manage to distinguish the extraordinary people they're looking for from everyone else, or when you're not extraordinary.

How to reliably signal internal experience?

I think knowing about the actual object level problem here would help in crafting a suitable solution. My main question is why are you informing your friends that you're at your limit?

Are you participating in some group activity (e.g. going to the gym) that you feel you have to drop out of? If so I strongly recommend just working through the pain until what's stopping you is no longer pain winning over willpower but physical incapability to proceed. At that point you don't even need to tell your friends you're at your limit because no matter what you're going to flop to the ground unable to continue with the activity. You clearly want to do the group activity, because you haven't even posited quitting as an option, so rely on your decision to do the group activity and trust that you're not going to cause any lasting harm to yourself by working through the pain.

If you're not participating in a group activity (e.g. you had to take off sick from work and you told your friends about it the next day) I see good reasons to not inform your friends that you're at your limit at all. You know what their expected response is, and you don't think that expected response is helpful. So might as well just not go through the routine that will give you the bad response.

The Power to Demolish Bad Arguments

I don't understand your usage of the term "hanging a lampshade" in this context. I don't think either Steve's or Liron's behavior in the hypothetical is unrealistic or unreasonable. I have seen similar conversations before. Liron even stated that the Steve was basically him from some time ago. I thought hanging a lampshade is when the fictional scenario is unrealistic or overly coincidental and the author wants to alleviate reader ire by letting them know that he thinks the situation is unlikely as well. Since the situation here isn't unrealistic, I don't see the relevance of hanging a lampshade.

If the article should be amended to include pro-"Uber exploits drivers" arguments it should also include contra arguments to maintain parity. Otherwise we have the exact same scenario but in reverse, as including only pro-"Uber exploits drivers" arguments will "automatically [...] generate bad feelings in people who know better the better arguments". This is why getting into the object-level accuracy of Steve's claim has negative value. Trying to do so will bloat the article and muddy the waters.

The Power to Demolish Bad Arguments

Making an unnecessary and possibly false object-level claim would only hurt the post. It's irrelevant to Liron's discussion whether Steve's claim is right or wrong and getting sidetracked by it's potential truthfulness would muddy the point.

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