If you take a piece of ice and mold it into a lens, you can use it to focus the sun’s rays to a beam that you can use to make a fire. At first, making fire from ice sounds counter intuitive. Well telling you that a rise in gas prices can make you wealthier, improve your communication abilities, help the environment, and improve your longevity sounds counter intuitive. I’m going to show you how through anti-fragility.
My car has a 14.5 gallon gas tank. I fill the tank 4 times a month. A $1 rise in gas prices, not including tax, costs me an extra $58 per month. Rather than calling this good or bad, I remove emotion and see that to maintain homeostasis I either need to earn an extra $58, reduce fuel consumption, reallocate $58 from somewhere else, or a combination of all three.. The change in price isn’t good or bad, it’s simply a catalyst to review my finances or update my resume. Now in reviewing my finances I find that I’m spending $15 on Netflix and $160 per week eating out because I’m lazy (which is the actual case). So I decide to cut out Netflix and $40 per week eating out and decided to cook. That saves me $175 per month and minus the $58 turns to a savings of $117 which I set aside each month to make an extra mortgage payment on my house.
Now let’s say I have a 30-year mortgage on $250,000 with a 2.75% interest rate and I pay an extra $120 every month on my bill. This reduces the amount of time on the loan by 4.6 years and reduces interest by $19,000. The catalyst saved me money in the long run.
By eating at home, I eat healthier which reduces my weight and extends the quality and length of my life and because I just saved money, I have less distress chemicals in my body that can cause illness. So far, the catalyst of the gas price has saved me money in the long run and improved my health.
Now stripping away Netflix to what it actually is, a way to pass the time, I substitute it with reading books from the library. Well, reading improves writing and other communication skills. The pen is mightier than the sword. So now I’m actually more powerful. (Actually I’m learning the harmonica so that I can build relationships when I travel the world.)
This is fire from ice or what I call the anti-fragility mindset. I apply it to everything. Change is the only constant. Darwin said that the key to survival is adaptation. Adapt faster and more appropriately than the competition and you win. I have low stress levels because I love change.