Maximizing Efficiency and Success Through Strategic Focus

Lucas Charbonnier

Hatched by Lucas Charbonnier

Dec 22, 2023

3 min read


Maximizing Efficiency and Success Through Strategic Focus


In the pursuit of academic excellence, it is crucial to adopt effective strategies that optimize efforts and yield favorable results. This article explores the concepts of working on past exam papers in mathematics and utilizing mental models to enhance learning, decision-making, and writing skills. By combining these approaches, individuals can improve their performance and achieve their desired goals.

Working on Past Exam Papers:

When it comes to subjects like mathematics, mastering the fundamentals and revisiting key concepts is essential. For exams like the EDHEC and emlyon, it is recommended to focus on exercises that are not well understood and review important topics. Instead of skimming through multiple subjects, it is more beneficial to thoroughly understand and practice one entire topic. This approach ensures a comprehensive understanding and increases the chances of success.

For subjects like those in the Parisiennes exams, it may not be feasible to revisit every topic due to the time constraints. However, it is still advisable to identify crucial questions or traditional exercises and practice them selectively. By using resources like a comprehensive study guide, individuals can prioritize their efforts and focus on the most important aspects. It is essential to be mindful of the limited time available and choose past papers with available solutions.

Utilizing Mental Models:

The renowned investor Charlie Munger once emphasized the importance of having mental models to understand and navigate the world effectively. By incorporating mental models into our thinking process, we can develop a framework to comprehend complex situations and make informed decisions. One such mental model is the Pareto Principle, commonly known as the 80/20 Rule.

The Pareto Principle suggests that 80% of outcomes are often derived from 20% of inputs. By identifying the key factors that contribute to success, individuals can allocate their resources efficiently and achieve significant results. This principle can be applied to various aspects of life, including relationships, learning, and writing.

Applying the 80/20 Rule:

In the realm of relationships, the 80/20 Rule encourages individuals to focus on cultivating deeper and more meaningful connections with a select few. Instead of trying to meet everyone, investing time and effort in building strong bonds with individuals who resonate the most can lead to greater happiness and success. By leveraging the power of quality over quantity, one can establish valuable connections with influential and successful individuals.

When it comes to learning, adopting the 80/20 Rule allows individuals to streamline their efforts and prioritize the most effective resources. Instead of overwhelming oneself with numerous books on a particular subject, it is advisable to identify the best "explainer" and concentrate on that resource. This approach saves time and ensures a higher quality of knowledge acquisition.

In the realm of writing, the 80/20 Rule highlights the importance of giving due attention to key elements that contribute to success. By recognizing the significance of titles, writers can dedicate time to crafting innovative and attention-grabbing headlines. Testing and refining these titles before publication can significantly enhance the reach and impact of the written work.

Actionable Advice:

  • 1. Prioritize understanding and mastering one topic at a time in mathematics to ensure thorough comprehension and increase the likelihood of success in exams.
  • 2. Embrace the 80/20 Rule in various aspects of life, such as relationships, learning, and writing, to optimize efforts and maximize results.
  • 3. Invest time and effort in building meaningful connections with a select few individuals who resonate the most, as this can lead to greater happiness and success.


By combining the strategic approach of working on past exam papers in mathematics and incorporating mental models like the 80/20 Rule, individuals can enhance their academic performance and overall success. Prioritizing key concepts, allocating resources efficiently, and nurturing meaningful connections are vital steps in achieving desirable outcomes. By applying these actionable strategies, individuals can unlock their potential and excel in their academic endeavors.

Hatch New Ideas with Glasp AI 🐣

Glasp AI allows you to hatch new ideas based on your curated content. Let's curate and create with Glasp AI :)