03 November 2020

Mental Model

Cobra Effect  | At the time of British rule of colonial India, the British government was concerned about the number of venomous cobra snakes in Delhi and so it offered a bounty for every dead cobra. The policy initially appeared successful. Eventually, however, the number of dead cobras being presented for bounty payment began to increase over time and it was discovered that people began to breed cobras for the income. When the government became aware of this, the reward program was scrapped, causing the cobra breeders to set the now-worthless snakes free. As a result, the wild cobra population further increased. The apparent solution to the problem made the situation even worse.

Hence, the Cobra effect is when an attempted solution to a problem makes the very problem worse. The root of the cause is often applying too linear thinking to the problem while neglecting the effect of feedback loops. The model shows that simplistic policies can come back to bite you.


Microneedling | Every year, it seems, scientists are on the verge of one extraordinary breakthrough or another that would reverse the effects of ageing. While we wait for the miracle cure, the ~$50B anti-ageing industry continues to grow — and grow fast. It is expected to reach a whopping ~$80B by 2024. 

Two trends worth watching:

  • Non-invasive, or non-surgical, aesthetic treatments (e.g., botox, chemical peels, fillers, and microdermabrasion) are becoming more popular. This is not surprising: they are cheaper, faster, and less daunting than surgical alternatives. The market for these treatments was worth $6.6B in 2018, and is expected to hit $10B by 2026. 
  • Rather than waiting to reverse the signs of ageing, younger demographics are investing in preventative treatments in the hopes of delaying the process altogether. Preventative botox, for example, is on the rise: 1.5m injections were given to people under the age of 40 in 2018. This represents a 4.7% increase from 2017. By comparison, total botox injections increased by 2.9% over the same period. 

Enter microneedling: a relatively new, minimally invasive cosmetic procedure that is used to treat and prevent wrinkles, acne scarring, stretch marks, enlarged pores, and other skin conditions. The treatment uses a device called a “derma pen” that has tiny needles which create miniscule wounds in the skin. This triggers the body’s wound response and the production of new collagen and elastin. Treatments cost between $200-$700 per session, and most people need 3-6 sessions for optimal results.


Nomad List 3.0 | Find the best place to ❤️ live, 👩‍💻 work, and 💃 play. Here


Progress | The easy way is often the hard way.

Shortcuts, one-sided deals, and selfish behavior create debts.

You only look like a winner until the bill comes due.

Short-term actions become long-term frustrations.

In hindsight, the hard way only seems slow in the moment.


Computer Riser | This riser reduces neck strain and has plenty of storage notches for holding your phone, drink and other computer accessories. Here



We are always complaining that our days are few, and acting as though there would be no end of them

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