I spend an unbelievable amount of time and money on personal development.

I mean a lot…

At the peak, it was well over 40 days and $250,000 a year, and today its still pretty close to that…

Someone once asked me, “why in THE WORLD would you possibly spend so much time and money on development?”

Hmmm… I thought, great question I haven’t really thought about it.

They then doubled down and explained how I could not possibly implement 1/10th what I learned. They wondered if I could even retain half of it.

So I sat down to try and figure out if I was unreasonable, and even irrational about my personal development journey.

And then it dawned on me… I make really good decisions in most situations. I always feel like I “know what to do”. My friends and family tease me all the time that I “know a lot of weird stuff about a lot of weird stuff.”

It was in my reflection that I realized that all that time and development was filling me full of PATTERNS. It was subconsciously helping me build strategic thinking skills. It helped me connect dots faster than most.

Almost like a chess master.

In fact, there was a study done on chess masters vs. chess grandmasters. The assumption was that grandmasters are better because they think more moves ahead.

What the study actually found, however, was that both were thinking the same number of moves ahead (roughly 6-8).

The big difference?

The grandmaster was much better at selecting the “best move” in each new situation.

Chess is a game of patterns. The pieces make a pattern on the board, with relative strengths and weaknesses of you and of your opponent.

The grandmaster was able to make better decisions because of all the additional patterns learned subconsciously—about 4x more in this particular study.

Seemingly endless repetition helped the grandmaster see the game with more clarity, make better decisions, and ultimately prevail the vast majority of the time.

It works the same in personal development.

It’s why Warren Buffett reads 500 pages a day.

It is why Bill Gates does two full “think weeks” a year, sequestered in the woods, alone for 7 days with just books and white papers.

And it is why I spend 40+ days a year in personal development…

More patterns.

Better gut instinct.

Better decisions


Founder of the align5 Companies,  CEO of Scaling Up Coaches, and Serial Entrepreneur

Did you enjoy this content?  Click below to subscribe to John’s Blog!

Subscribe to John’s Blog