The 48 laws of power by Robert Greene

Law 1: Never outshine the master

In office setting, your job is to make your boss look good.

If you don’t seem like a threat, you can learn a lot from them and earn their trust.

Law 2: Never put too much trust in friends

Learn how to use enemies

You friend can betray you quick if they get jealous

Law 3: Conceal your intentions

Never reveal what you intent to do

If you tell someone you are going to attack them, they are going to have time to prepare and defence.

Make them wonder what your intentions are, be unspecific with your language, be unavailable

Don’t ever tell someone your plan of actions

This is how you open up yourself and adapt your enemies.

Law 4: Always say less than necessary

If you talk a lot, you’ll say something foolish eventually, so keep your mouth shup

Law 5: So much depends on reputation, guard it with your life.

Reputation is the power, throught reputation alone, you can intimidate and win.

That’s why a lot of politian has the connections on media.

Law 6: Court attention at all cost.

No matter what you do, you will be judge by your appearance

So if you want to be in power, stand out be conspicuous.

Law 7: Get other to do the work for you, but always take the credit

You don’t have all the knowlege and expertise to do all the work you have to do.

You have other people around, so use their blood and sweat to do things for you.

Make sure you always take the credit.

This saves your time and energy.

Law 8: Make other people come to you, use bait if necessary

If you waiting someone to make the first move, you are going to lose.

Make them come to you, make them react first

You can bride them, use them or use any form of bait.

If you can make them react, they are going to be in your control

Law 9: Win through your actions, never through argument

If you want to proof someone wrong, prove them wrong in actions

That will make you seem a lot more powerful and control than wining a war with argument

Law 10: Infection: Avoid the unhappy and unlucky

Always remeber unhappy people will bring misery to your life as well

Law 11: learn to keep people dependent on you

If you want complete power, people have to dependent on you

The more people you have depend on you, the more freedom you are going to have

Law 12: Use selective honesty and generosity to disarm your victim.

Be kind of them and make them think that you care of them

You can disarm you victim and take advantage of them.

When asking for help, appeal to people’s self interest. Never their mercy or gratitude.

If you want someone to help you, give them a selfish reason to do so, people have short memory span

They don’t care if you have help them in the past or if you alway kind to them

But you can assure that they can make a million dollar by helping you, they will be very ethusiastic

They will assist you on whatever way they can.

Don’t expect mercy or gratitude from anyone

Law 14: Pose as a friend, work as a spy

Get them to talk about themself, by doing so, you can spy on them

Asking them indirect question

In order to get power, you need to get leverage over them.

Spying on them is best way to extract that information

Law 15: Crush your enemy total

If you want to win, you have to crush you enemy completely

This is why in ancient time, after killing the enemy, they will also kill the entire family

This is price to pay to gain entire power

If you leave your enemy partially wounded, he will recover and come back to seek revenge

That’s why if you destroy someone, make sure you destroy them completely, so that they can never come back.

Law 16: Use absence to increase respect and honor

You have create value through scarcity

If you are always available, people will start to take you for granted

Be absent for a while, create an aura of mystery

Law 17: Keep other in suspended terror: cultivarte an air of unpredictability

Humans are creatures of habit

You predictability gives them sense of control

Turn the tables and be deliberately unpredicable.

Law 18: Do not build fortresses (堡垒) to protect yourself – isolations dangerous

Isolation exposes you to more dangers

Law 19: Know who you’re dealing with – Do not offend the wrong person

Don’t outmaneuver the wrong kind of people

Choose people you mess with carefully, don’t offend someone who is way more powerful than you.

Law 20: Do not commit to anyone.

Do not commit to any side but yourself

Persuit neutral & Unbiased and you will have more power

Law 21: Play a sucker to catch a sucker – Seem dumber than your mark

Make your victims feel smart

No one like to feeling stupid sitting on next person.

The objective is to make your victim to feel smart, not just smart, but smart than you are.

Once they are convinced, they won’t suspect an ulterior motive.

Law 22: Use the surrender tactic: Transform weakness into power

When you are weak, never fight for honor’s sake

Get rid of your ego, and surrender first, this will unsettle your opponent

Law 23: Concetrate your forces

Find one key patron

If you try to get a promotion, identify one person who’s important and focus on them and do not try to friend and please everyone.

Law 24: Play the perfect courtier

Graceful and Polite

Learn how to play the perfect courtier while you, while you grabing the power, this way you will slip by undetected, and you won’t have people come after you.

Law 25: Recreate yourself

Do not accept the laws that society force on you.

Recreate yourself by creating a new identity

Be the master of your audience and let them define you.

Law 26: Keep your hands clean

Use others as scapesoats can disguist your involvement

Law 27 – Play on people’s need to believe to create a cult-like following

People have overwhelming desire to believe in something.

Become a focal point of such desire by offering them a cause, your faith to follow.

Keep your word vague, but full of promise.

Emphasize enthusiasm over rationality and clear thinking.

Ask them to make sacrifice on your behave, if you think about it carefully, this is how politicians stay in power

Law 28: Enter action with boldness

Enter any situation with audacity

Don’t be timid & Shy, otherwise you will be crashed eventually.

Law 29: Plan all the way to the end

The ending is everything

Plan all the way to it by taking into account all the possible consequences.

By planning to the end, you will know when to stop

Law 30: Make your accomplishments seem effortless

When you act effortlessly, as if you can do more

Law 31: Control the options: Get others to play with the cards you deal

The best deception is to give other person choices, your victim seems like they are in control, but actually they are your puppet

Give people options that come out in your favor whichever one they choose. Force them to make choices which one between the lesser one-two evils.

Both of you serve your purpose, this false elusion of choice avoid any suspision from you.

Law 32: Play to people’s fantasies

Give people the life of fantasies and imagination and they will be in your hands

Law 33: Discover each man’s thumbscrew (拇指夹)

Everyone has a weakness, weakness is usually insecurity.

Uncontrollable emotion on need.

It can also be a small secret pleasure, you can figure out and use it as your advantage.

Law 34: Be royal in your own fashion: Act like a king to be threated like one

The way you carry yourself often determine how you want to be treated

Law 35: Master the art of timing

Never seems like you are in hurry. Hurry means that you have no control in your life.

Always seem patient, everything will come to you eventually.

Law 36: Disdain things you cannot have: Ignoring them is the best revenge

By acknowledge your enemy’s problem, you give them assistant and credibility.

Attention makes the enemy stronger.

The small mistake often make worse and more visble when you try to fix them

Sometimes it is best to leave things alone.

Law 37: Create compelling spectacles

Everyone respond to striking images,

Stage spectacles for those around you

Impress your audience, no one will notice what you really doing.

Law 38: Think as you like but behave like others

If you are making short going against the time, flood with unconvensional ideas, people will only think that you only want attentions, and you look down upon them.

They will punish you for making them feel inferior.

Law 39: Stir up waters to catch fish

Anger and emotion is counter productive

You must always stay calm and objective.

Make your enemy loss control and emotion, then you can easily take advantage of them, because they are not in control of how they feel.

Law 40: Despise the free lunch

There is no such thing as free lunch

It usually is a trick or hidden obligation

Be wary of anything for free

Law 41: Avoid stepping into a great man’s shoes

Don’t get lost in other people’s shadows.

Law 42: Strike the shepherd and the sheep will scatter

People will succumb to their influence

Law 43: Work on the hearts and minds of others

Law 44: Disarm and infuriate with the mirror effect

The mirror reflect reality and it is also the perfect tool for deception.

When you mirror you enemy, and do exactly as they do.

Law 45: Preach the need for change, but never reform too much at once.

Too much innovation is traumatic

Make a show of respecting the old way of doing things

Law 46: Never appear too perfect

Appear better than others is always dangerous

Envy creates silent enemies

Only the gods and the dead have the luxury of looking perfect

Law 47: Do not go past the mark you aimed for

Learn when to stop

Law 48: Assume formlessness

Be like water

By having a invisible plan, you open yourself to adapt.

Keep yourself adaptable and on the move

Nothing is certain and no law is fixed.

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