Home » Law 30: Make Your Accomplishments Seem Effortless

Law 30: Make Your Accomplishments Seem Effortless

In the image: Katrín Jakobsdóttir is an Icelandic politician serving as the 28th and current Prime Minister of Iceland since 2017. She has been a member of the Althing for the Reykjavík North constituency since 2007. She became deputy chairperson of the Left-Green Movement in 2003 and has been their chairperson since 2013. Wikipedia

Your actions must seem natural and executed with ease. All the toil and practice that go into them, and also all the clever tricks must be concealed. When you act, act effortlessly, as if you could do much more. Avoid the temptation of revealing how hard you work — it only raises questions. Teach no one your tricks or they will be used against you.

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Keys To Power

  • As humans, we admire things that move effortlessly and easily.
  • It’s the idea of sprezzatura, the capacity to make the difficult seem easy. All the great Renaissance artists carefully kept their works under wraps. Only the finished masterpiece could be shown to the public. They knew that the making of the works would mar the magic of their effect, and their studied atmosphere of ease and natural beauty.
  • When you reveal the inner workings of your creation, you become just one more mortal among others. What is understandable is not awe-inspiring, we tell ourselves we could do as well if we had the time and money.
  • One reason to conceal your tricks and shortcuts: when you let this information out, you give people ideas they can use against you. You lose the advantages of keeping silent.

Reversal

  • The secrecy with which you surround your actions must seem lighthearted in spirit. A zeal to conceal your work makes you look like you’re taking the game too seriously.
  • There are also times when revealing the inner working of your projects can prove worthwhile. It all depends on your audience’s taste, and on the times in which you operate.

Example

In the image: Harry Houdini

Harry Houdini made his stunt performances look like they were a walk in the park, a piece of cake, as easy as stealing a child’s lollipop. No one saw just how much work, preparation, and practice went into every piece of the puzzle. This illusion we call magic. Make it look like it was improvised, made up on the spot and it will seem genuine. Boast how much work went into something and its natural allure, the magic, is gone.

About The Book

The 48 Laws of Power (1998) is a non-fiction book by American author Robert Greene. The book is a bestseller, selling over 1.2 million copies in the United States.

Buy The 48 Laws of Power or Listen to it for FREE on Audible