Commitment, Conviction, and Continuous Learning: Keys to Success


Hatched by Glasp

Jul 22, 2023

4 min read


Commitment, Conviction, and Continuous Learning: Keys to Success


In life, it is crucial to commit to the things that truly matter to us. Without dedication and conviction, we risk being distracted by the multitude of choices and opportunities that surround us. The Tendai Buddhist monks, who embark on a quest called the Kaihogyo, teach us the importance of commitment and the need to eliminate goals that lack significance. Similarly, reading plays a vital role in our personal growth and development. By learning from the experiences and insights of others, we can expand our knowledge and make better decisions. This article explores the common themes of commitment, conviction, and continuous learning, and offers actionable advice for incorporating these principles into our lives.

Commitment and Conviction:

The Tendai Buddhist monks exemplify the power of commitment and conviction. They believe that enlightenment can be attained in one's current life, but only through extreme self-denial. The Kaihogyo, a grueling challenge, demands unwavering commitment. Monks can withdraw during the first 100 days, but after that, they must either complete the quest or take their own lives. This extreme approach teaches us to evaluate the importance of our goals and eliminate those that lack significance. When we commit to something, we must see it through to the end or relinquish it entirely. We should fill our lives with goals that are worth finishing and eliminate the rest.

Taking Action:

The first actionable advice is to recognize that the length of time it takes to accomplish a goal should not deter us from pursuing it. The time will pass regardless, so it is better to start and make progress rather than giving up prematurely. We are privileged to have the opportunity to pursue our dreams, and the fear of failure should not hold us back. The Tendai monks teach us that commitment and conviction are essential, regardless of the urgency of our goals. By approaching our daily goals with the same sense of determination, we can make significant progress and achieve fulfillment.

Continuous Learning Through Reading:

Reading is a powerful tool for continuous learning and personal growth. As Charlie Munger stated, wise people read all the time. By delving into books, articles, and essays, we can tap into the wisdom and experiences of others. It allows us to master the best of what has already been figured out. However, it is important to approach reading strategically. Start books quickly, but give them up easily if they fail to captivate your interest. Good books have a way of finishing themselves, while persisting with a bad book only wastes valuable time.

The Levels of Reading offer different approaches to reading, from reading for entertainment to reading to master a subject. Most of our time will be spent between levels 2 and 3, where we read to inform and understand. Reading speed becomes irrelevant; what truly matters is what we absorb and comprehend. By re-reading the best books twice, we reinforce our learning and deepen our understanding. The opportunity cost of reading something new is the missed opportunity to revisit a book that has had a profound impact on us.

Connecting Knowledge through Writing:

Writing about what we read is a powerful way to solidify our learning. It allows us to connect new knowledge to existing knowledge and identify gaps in our understanding. Writing also helps us realize when we don't fully comprehend a concept. The process of putting our thoughts into words reveals areas where our understanding may be lacking. Writing acts as a feedback mechanism that guides our learning journey.


Commitment, conviction, and continuous learning are vital elements for success and personal growth. By committing to goals that truly matter, eliminating distractions, and approaching our daily tasks with determination, we can make significant progress. Reading, in turn, enables us to tap into the wisdom of others and continuously expand our knowledge. By reading strategically, taking notes, and writing about what we learn, we solidify our understanding and ensure continuous growth. Let us embrace commitment, conviction, and continuous learning as we navigate our journey towards success.

Actionable Advice:

  • 1. Evaluate the importance of your goals and eliminate those that lack significance. Fill your life with goals worth finishing and eliminate the rest.
  • 2. Do not be deterred by the length of time it takes to accomplish a goal. Start now and make progress, as time will pass regardless.
  • 3. Read strategically, focusing on books that truly captivate your interest and offer valuable insights. Take notes and write about what you learn to solidify your understanding and connect new knowledge to existing knowledge.

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