The 48 laws of power (part 2)

Second entry of the micro series of 4 posts in which we show a summary of the magnificent book by Robert Greene. In this part 2 of The 48 Laws of Power we will see a second block with another 12 laws.

WARNING: Some of the laws may seem too aggressive and even dangerous. Do not take them literally. My advice is to learn from them, whether you agree with them or not.

Law 13: When asking for help, appeal to people’s self-interest, never to their mercy or gratitude

Discover something in your request, or in your alliance with someone, that will benefit them. Then emphasize it disproportionately.

Law 14: Pretend to be a friend, work as a spy

Ask indirect questions to get people to reveal their weaknesses and intentions.

Law 15: Totally crush your enemy

More is lost by stopping halfway than by total annihilation. The enemy will recover and seek revenge. Crush him, not only in body but in spirit.

Law 16: Use absence to increase respect and honor

The more you are seen and heard, the more common you seem. If you are already established in a group, temporarily withdrawing from it will make you more talked about, even admired. Create value through scarcity.

Law 17: Keep others in a state of suspended terror: cultivate an air of unpredictability

Humans are creatures of habit with an insatiable need to see familiarity in other people’s actions. Your predictability gives them a sense of control. Behavior that seems to have no consistency or purpose will keep them off balance and they will exhaust themselves trying to explain your moves.

Law 18: Don’t build fortresses to protect yourself: isolation is dangerous

Isolation exposes you to more dangers than it protects: it deprives you of valuable information, makes you visible and an easy target. The crowd protects you from your enemies.

Las 48 leyes del poder
The 48 laws of power (part 2)

Law 19: Know who you are dealing with, don’t offend the wrong person

Choose your victims and opponents carefully.

Law 20: Don’t compromise with anyone

It is the fool who is always quick to take sides. Commit yourself to no side or cause except yourself. By maintaining your independence, you become the master of others, pitting people against each other, causing them to persecute you.

Law 21: Play dumb to catch a fool: look dumber than your target

No one likes to feel dumber than someone else. Make your victims feel smart, and not just smart, but smarter than you. Once they are convinced of this, they will never suspect that you may have ulterior motives.

Law 22: Use the tactic of surrender: turn weakness into power

When you are at your weakest, never fight for honor. Choose to surrender instead. Surrender gives you time to recover, time to torment and irritate your conqueror, time to wait for his power to diminish. Don’t give him the satisfaction of fighting and defeating you: surrender first. By turning the other cheek you enrage and unsettle him.

Law 23: Concentrate your forces

You gain more by finding a rich mine and extracting it deeper than by jumping from one shallow mine to another: intensity always wins over extension.

Law 24: Play the perfect courtier

Always talk less about yourself than about other people. Never be the bearer of bad news. Express admiration for the good work of others.

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