The 48 Laws of Power Book Summary

This is the 48 Laws of Power Book Summary. Well researched, Updated, and beautifully written, you will love it.

Written by Robert Greene and originally published in the year 1998, The 48 Laws of Power is a must-read power book.

The reason is, that the book truly teaches us more about how to handle and remain powerful.

Below I summarize the 48 Laws of power for you. I hope that you concur with me when you finish reading.

The 48 Laws of Power book Summary and review

The 48 Laws of Power Summary (Laws 1 to 4)

1) Never Outshine the Master

We attain greater power by making our masters appear better and more brilliant than they actually are. Always avoid victories over your superiors as it will cost you more than is necessary.

We should always ensure the status quo of our superiors remains so at any given moment. You achieve this by ensuring that they do not suspect or perceive any threat to their power.

People always make major mistakes when they show off their strengths, accomplishments, and successes to their leaders.

The motive for doing so may be to impress their bosses but doing so may result in a contrary effect.

A leader may realize that you are better than them making the master fearful and insecure. Such leaders will always downplay your efforts, avoid you totally or even destroy you.

2) Never Put Too Much Trust in Friends-Learn How to Use Enemies

People are selfish; they are always interested to further their own interests and this is one of the reasons why one should trust from a distance.

There is more to be feared from friends than from enemies. Exercise great caution when dealing with your allies as a betrayal from friends is highly likely to happen faster due to jealousy and envy.

You stand to gain more loyalty from a former enemy than a friend because an enemy, when given a second chance, diligently seeks your approval and trust.

Former opponents translate to loyal and stronger friendships. Try looking for a way of making enemies if they are nonexistent in your life.

3) Conceal your Intentions

People are unable to make any preparation for any defense against you if they lack a clue of what you are up to.

Let them discover your intentions way too late after having been misled far off in the wrong direction.

Learn to add a sense of unpredictability to your character.

The reason behind your actions should never be revealed to people. Doing this will leave them in the dark and off-balance. 

4) Always Say Less Than Necessary

Powerful persons are able to influence and intimidate others by talking less.  Actions speak louder than words.

You are more likely to say foolish things whenever you speak a lot.

A fool is deemed to be clever whenever he keeps his mouth shut. Silence is golden.

You appear more common and less in control whenever you talk a lot. Stop trying to impress others with words.

Only speak when you have something meaningful to say. An insignificant thing can be perceived to be valuable if portrayed as a mystery.

The 48 Laws of Power Summary (Law 5 to 8)

5) So Much Depends On Reputation- Guard It with Your Life

Reputation is considered one of the cornerstones of power. 

You can win and intimidate with your repute alone and you can as well accomplish the opposite with tainted character as this results in one becoming vulnerable and subjected to attacks on all sides.

Your reputation precedes you. Build and protect it carefully.

Your reputation should be unquestionable. Always be on the lookout for every potential threat and quench it before it happens.

Meanwhile, exercise the art of destroying your enemies by gaping holes in their reputation.

Then stay aloof and allow public opinion to put squash them down.

6) Court Attention at All Cost

Stand out from the crowd. All publicity -whether negative or positive- is good publicity.

Never allow yourself to become seen as one of the many. Never allow yourself to be buried in obscurity or lost in the crowd.  

Don’t fade into the background. At all costs, become conspicuous.

What has been seen counts for nothing as everything is judged by the manner in which it appears. 

You can become an attention magnet by appearing more colorful, bigger, and mysterious than the timid and bland masses.

7) Get Others to Do the Work for You, but Always Take the Credit

Only do what only you can do – never do what anyone else can do for you.

Hire a talent capable of doing what you can’t.

At the end of it all, you will stand to be remembered while helpers get forgotten.

You can advance your own cause by using the knowledge, wisdom, and legwork of the people around you.

This can save one’s energy and valuable time while at the same time portraying a perception of effectiveness and efficiency. 

8) Make Other People Come to You – Use Bait If Necessary

You can force your opponent to follow your rules without them knowing as depicted in the famous Otto Von Bismarck words “When I have laid the bait for deer, I don’t shoot at the first doe that comes to sniff, but wait until the whole herd has gathered round”.

You tend to be in control whenever you force another person to act.

It is always advisable to let your rival approach you while in the process he deserts his own plans.

You can entice your challenger with magnificent gains and then attack thereafter. The cards are in your hands.

The 48 Laws of Power Summary (Law 9 to 12)

9) Win Through Your Actions- Not through Argument

Actions speak better than words. Always demonstrate instead of explicating.  

It is much more meaningful and powerful when others agree with you through your actions without you uttering a word.

Do not argue with authorities, only agree and suggest an alternative followed by a demonstration.

A Pyrrhic victory is actually what is achieved whenever you gain victory through arguing at any given moment.

This is to say a win attained through an argument leads to resentment and an ill will that lasts longer.

A lot is at stake as the loss incurred supersedes the benefit obtained from the victory.

10) Infection – Avoid the Unhappy and Unlucky

Did you know another person’s misery can lead you to your deathbed?

Just like any disease, emotional states have been identified to be infectious.

Cut off the fire starters -try to assist them then you will burn alongside them.

Realize that those unfortunate mostly tend to draw bad luck on themselves and they can as well draw the same on to you.

Instead, learn to associate yourself with positive, fortunate, and happy individuals.

You may think that you are assisting a helpless person while on the contrary, you might be creating your own disaster.

11) Learn To Keep People Dependent on You

Prove yourself to be an indispensable asset.

Make yourself to be the only one who can do what you do or risk being replaced in your field.

Maintaining your independence requires you to be always needed and wanted by others.

You stand to gain more freedom whenever the level of reliance from others upon you is increased. 

There is nothing for you to fear by making people depend on you for success and happiness.

Teach them only what is needed but not enough to make them do without you.

12) Use Selective Honesty and Generosity to Disarm Your Victim

To gain the trust of your opponent, tell the truth.

Be honest when expected to be dishonest to throw your rival off guard.

A single move made with sincerity and honesty can supersede dozens of others done with dishonesty. 

All guards erected by people can be brought down –even for the most suspicious individuals by practicing open-hearted gestures of generosity and honesty.

You can then manipulate and deceive your targets at your own will after using selective honesty to earn their trust.

The 48 Laws of Power Summary (Law 13 to 16)

13) When Asking for Help, Appeal to People’s Self- interest, Never to their Mercy or Gratitude

In deals of any kind, pragmatic arguments will always win over the emotional appeal.

Don’t count for loyalties. Aim for a win-win deal.

Whenever you need help from your friends, never bother to remind them of the time in the past when you came through for them when they needed your help.

The past doesn’t matter.   Instead, you can coin your request coined in such a way that is perceived to benefit the other party- mutual interest.

Then watch your allies respond willingly because they stand to gain something out of it.

14) Pose as a Friend, Work as a Spy

It is critical to know your rival. Learn to be always a step ahead by using spies to collect important information. 

You can, better still, play the spy yourself. Test people’s honesty before considering trusting them.

Every occasion provides an opportunity for one to spy artfully.

Learn to ask questions whenever you are in a polite social gathering.

Get your targets to reveal their intentions and weaknesses by asking them indirect questions without arousing suspicion.

Another way of achieving this is to let others talk profusely about themselves in which case they unintentionally reveal their faults.

15) Crush your Enemies Totally

When words are no longer heard and the opponent can no more be reasoned with, the chance for any peace is at the lowest, the only option is total destruction. 

An enemy is likely to recover when left wounded and plot his revenge showing no mercy at all.

You lose more by stopping halfway than by carrying out annihilation fully.

Not only should you crush the foe bodily but spiritually as well.

A fire will breakout eventually no matter how dimly the ember smolders and regardless of whether it was one ember that was left alight.

It is from the wisdom of old that all great leaders beginning with Moses of the Bible recognize that an enemy who is feared must be completely crushed.  

People tend to ignore this wisdom but they eventually learn it the hard way sometimes.

16) Use Absence to Increase Respect and Honor

Would you prefer being asked, ‘Why have you come to see me again?’ or ‘Why haven’t you been coming to see me?’ 

It is crucial for you to learn when to leave.  Familiarity breeds contempt.

Your peculiarity disappears the moment you begin to be seen or heard more frequently.

Temporal withdrawal from an established association you are involved in can make you be more talked about and even most admired.

More so, create value through scarcity. The price will always go down whenever the circulation of anything becomes too much.

Give people time to miss you by robbing them of your presence.

Whenever we lose something, it is then that we discover how much value it has been to us.

You are appreciated more when you reappear.

The 48 Laws of Power Summary (Law 17 to 20)

17) Keep Others in Suspended Terror: Cultivate an Air of Unpredictability

Human beings are known to be creatures of habit.

They have an insatiable desire to seek association and familiarity inactions of other people.  The unpredictable is terrifying.

When you do not know what to expect you cannot articulate properly and can’t devise a clever plan because you are in darkness. 

Put others in such a position whenever you are negotiating.

Individuals get a sense of control from their ability to predict their actions.

Turn the tables around and become deliberately unpredictable.

Keep them off-balance by displaying traits that appear to have no purpose or consistency; they will become weary in their endeavor to understand your moves. 

You can create terror or intimidation by using this strategy to the extreme.

18) Do Not Build Fortress to Protect Yourself: Isolation is Dangerous

The world is full of danger and enemies are all over. Everyone has themselves to protect.

It’s better to be among the masses, with friends with who you can mingle. A crowd is highly likely to shield you from your enemies.  

A fortress is mostly perceived to be safest but on the contrary, you tend to isolate yourself and this exposes you to greater danger than the protection you were seeking. 

In seclusion, you lose touch with reality. You are denied access to crucial information, making you conspicuous and an easy target.

When a person urges you to exclude yourself from family or even friends in your life, realize they don’t have your interest at heart.

They want to control and influence you all by themselves.  Whether they do this consciously or unconsciously it is malicious.

Be careful so that you don’t isolate yourself from others for too long as you may cause great harm to yourself psychologically by pushing others away from you. 

19) Know Who You’re Dealing With: Do Not Offend the Wrong Person

The world comprises different kinds of people and assumptions should never be made that people will always respond the same to any given strategy put across their paths.

Avoid insulting others. You do not know who you are dealing with-even though we live in a time where everyone is offended and the level of political correctness leads to great madness.

Some people tend to be wolves in Lambs’ clothing and will not rest until they seek revenge for being deceived or outmaneuvered. 

Carefully select your opponents and victims and you will avoid offending or deceiving the wrong person.

20) Do Not Commit to Anyone

Committing to someone is like handing yourself over to them. It means more obligations and less control.

Rushing always to take sides is an action of a fool. You only have yourself to commit to. Never commit to any cause or side.

Maintain your independence and you will buy your ticket to becoming the master of other people where you effortlessly turn people against each other as well as making them pursue you.

The 48 Laws of Power Summary (Law 21 to 24)

21) Play a Sucker to Catch a Sucker: Seem Dumber than your Mark

Choose to tactfully play around with Socrates’s wise words. The only true wisdom is in knowing you know nothing.

Sometimes you have to play dumb in order for your opponent to let their guards down.

This can be a candid strategy for disarming people. Being openly smart is foolish but being openly foolish is smart.

You will never be suspected of having any ulterior motive after you are able to convince your target that they are not only smart but very smarter than you are. 

Everyone dislikes feeling more foolish than their neighbors or counterparts. 

The trick here is to always make your mark to feel that he/she is smart.

22) Use the Surrender Tactic: Transform Weakness into Power

To quote Cardinal de Retz, ‘Weak people never give way when they ought to’. 

Avoid weakness but when you find yourself in a weak spot, choose to fight another day.

You will lose the current battle but the war is not over.

Surrendering can be used as a powerful tool that unsettles and infuriate your enemies by doing the unexpected – turning the other cheek.

Never engage yourself in a fight for the sake of honor if you happen to be the weaker one. Instead, choose to surrender.

Through surrendering, you allow yourself time to recover.

It is a period to irritate and torment your conqueror as you wait to witness his power begins to wane.

Surrender first and never give your enemy the satisfaction of triumphing over you.

23) Concentrate Your Forces

An army is much stronger when the soldiers are together than when they are divided or displaced. 

Dedicate your complete focus to one front, use every resource at your disposal, and all of your energy to master your craft for success.

You benefit more by identifying a mine full of riches and excavating it deeper, than by moving from one shallow mine to another.

Extensity is always defeated by intensity all the time.

When searching for a power source that would elevate you, identify the main person.

The person should be, the key decision-maker, influencer, the one who calls all the shots – the cow that is fat and guarantees you milk for a long period of time.

Maintain your energies and forces by making sure they are kept concentrated at the point where they are strongest.

24) Play the Perfect Courtier

You are either a courtier or the opposite by default. You must play the game of power so you might as well choose to be good at it.

A perfect courtier masters the art of being indirect.  He can flatter, and serve his superiors but he shines in his own light.

He is never powerless. In the most graceful and oblique manner, he commands power over other people. 

He is perceived to be trustworthy even if he doesn’t trust. He is always full of the right words at the right time even though he doesn’t talk much.

Everyone likes the perfect courtier. He is witty and helpful. He exudes himself as neutral, an epitome of fairness and honesty. 

He always has a smile on his face that is genuine. At no one time can anyone doubt his intentions.

People are never threatened by him and he is usually sought after as an ally.

He is able to survive and flourish in a world where all things revolve around political deftness and power.

The 48 Laws of Power Summary (Law 25 to 28)

25) Recreate yourself

Never allow other people to define you. Others will call you what they think you are or what they think they see in you- it’s all superficial. Your parents, friends, society, and even your government expect you to be someone or something else.  It is important that you choose to be whatever you want to be and that you feel free to change whenever you won’t like it. You have the freedom to dismiss the opinions of others.

Do not be limited by the responsibilities and roles that are foisted on you by society.  You are to forge a new identity by re-creating yourself. Reinvent in such a manner that makes you draw attention and excitement from those around you. Become the master of your image instead of allowing people to determine who you are. The world is your stage, and it’s up to you to choose which role you want to take. Think of life as a book, you are writing it and you are the main character.

26) Keep Your Hands Clean

It is a big act of betrayal to have another person’s back only to find out they were using you all a while. Avoid falling into the trap of being someone’s cats-paws or fall guy.

You can make your appearance spotless by using other people as cats-paws and scapegoats to masquerade your involvement. Your hands should not be soiled by nasty actions and mistakes. You ought to appear as a model of efficiency and civility.

27) Create a Cult: Play on People’s Need to Believe to Create a Cult-like Following

People have an insatiable desire to have something that they can believe in. You can tap into others’ desires by providing them with new faith, a cause that they can follow. According to Friedrich Nietzsche, ‘There are two different types of people in the world- those who want to know and those who want to believe.’Ensure your word are as vague as possible though full of promises. Insist on passion over rationality. Offer your new followers rituals that they can perform and require them to sacrifice on your behalf.

In a society with no grand cause and established religion, the new belief system can bring you great and untold power. However, your quest for answers and your need to belong can be used against you. Consider the famous words of Christopher Hitch, ‘Beware the irrational however seductive shun the transcendent and all who invite you to subordinate or annihilate yourself.’

28) Enter Action with Boldness

You must be certain of a course of action before attempting it as the execution will be highly affected by hesitations and doubts. Being timid is dangerous and it is advisable to perform an action with boldness.

There is no honor given to the timid but the bold will always be admired by everyone. Any error made through audacity is easily rectified with more bravery. In order to be fearless, you need courage- be bold.

The 48 Laws of Power Summary (Law 29 to 32)

29) Plan All the Way to the End

Planning should be done all the way to the end as the ending is all that counts. Consider the possible obstacles, outcomes, and consequences before taking any action. Calculate the risks and then follow through if a certain action is worth doing.  Be on the lookout for any twist of fortune which may allow others to take advantage of your efforts and hard work.

Things tend to change with time. It would be foolish to stick to a plan which ignores the change. Good planning enables you to have an end in mind.  You are likely to know when to stop. You are able to avoid detours and manage your time and resources.  As you follow through with the plan, there are fewer chances for any situation to overwhelm you.

30) Make your Accomplishments Seem Effortless

Never be attempted to reveal the level of hard work that has gone into an activity as this can raise questions about your ability. Never teach a soul your tricks and no one will use them against you.

The manner in which you perform your activities must always appear natural and carried out with ease. Conceal the nitty-gritty of hardships and clever tricks involved. When doing something, appear to be doing it effortlessly, like you can do much more.

31) Control the Options: Get Others to Play with the Card you Deal

People like to think they have a choice, and present the options that will in either way work for you. Just like a circus performance, it is an illusion.

Allowing another person to have a choice is the greatest deception tactic ever. The person is given a notion that he is in control by being able to make a decision but in an actual sense, he is being manipulated.  Always provide people with choices that are all in your favor.

32) Play to People’s Fantasies

The truth is always unpleasant and ugly and most people tend to avoid it. People find life to be distressing and so harsh that they create romance or fantasized in order to escape reality. You can mount higher and attain great power by learning to tap into the fantasies of people. 

Avoid seeking the reality or truth if you are not prepared to face the resulting wrath coming from the disenchanted mass. Stop clinking on how to make a million-dollar overnight. Stop buying six minutes workout programs.  Be real. If something sounds to be too good to be true, it probably is.

The 48 Laws of Power Summary (Law 33 to 36)

33) Discover Each Man’s Thumbscrew

It is imperative to identify the weak points of everyone around you as well as that of your enemy. You will know what to work with when you need their support or favor. Protect yourself by being careful not to betray your own weakness.

Every person has a weak point; we can simply call it – a gap in the wall of a castle.  The weakness being referred to here can be in terms of a need, insecurity, or an emotion that is totally uncontrollable.  This can also be in form of small concealed pleasure. Whichever the case, the weakness is a thumbscrew which you can use to your advantage.

34) Be Royal in your Own Fashion: Act like a King to Be Treated Like One

Ask for less and you will receive less. What you tolerate is what you end up with. Do not think lowly of yourself. You are a king in your own right. You are a queen in your own right. Be noble and full of confidence and you will instill confidence in others about your worth and ability.

People will disrespect you with time if you appear common or bad-mannered. The way in which you carry yourself often determines the way that you are treated by others.  The way you treat yourself is the same way that others will learn to treat you.

35) Master the Art of Timing

Stand back when the time is not right. It is important to know when an action is required and when to attain an optimal result. Act too fast and you are seen as a traitor. Learn to use the time to your advantage Act too slow and you will be perceived you are imitating others.

Whenever you are in a hurry, it shows that you are not in control of yourself as well as time. Never appear to be in haste. Be patient always and believe that everything will be alright eventually. With time comes change.  Identify the season of the moment and adapt to each accordingly. Know when to act and when to lay low.

36) Disdain Things You Cannot Have: Ignoring Them Is the Best Revenge

Learn to show contempt for anything that you desire but happens to be beyond your reach- push it aside with derision.  When you ignore someone, they cannot argue with you, they cannot influence you.  You are out of reach and they can’t do anything about it.

When you acknowledge an insignificant issue, what happens is that you give it credibility and make it significant. You make your enemies stronger by paying them a lot of attention.  More so, trying to fix a small mistake can make it more noticeable and worse.  Leaving things alone is sometimes the best move you can make. Displaying little interest in anything makes you appear to be superior.  

The 48 Laws of Power Summary (Law 37 to 40)

37) Create Compelling Spectacles

Any person is likely to be drawn to attractive things and promises that seem to alleviate their current state of social, political, or economic standing. Using this knowledge, those who aim to dominate others or gain political milestones always involve themselves in community affairs like fundraising, donations, and social projects. These displays of goodwill endear them to the members of society. Create spectacles for people around you. No one will be suspicious of your motives when they are distracted by appearances. 

Be careful not to fall into the trap of believing anything just because others believe.  If anyone believes it, it must be true- don’t fall for that. Observe the wisdom of Mark Twain who wrote, ‘Whenever you find yourself on the side of the majority, it is time to pause and reflect.’

38) Think as you like but Behave like Others

Nurturing a common touch and blending in is far much safer. You want to fit in whether you share a common belief or not.  Being different in any way only causes problems through other people’s envy and disdain. They will exorcise you from the group and slander your reputation.   Become selective with people when sharing stuff about you.  Confide only with your trusted allies who appreciate your strength and uniqueness.

Behaving like the mass will help you to avoid coming out as one who seeks attention and looks down upon other people. Flow with the time not against it. Avoid ways that appear unorthodox. People will always find ways of punishing you for displaying your superiority. This results to hate and creates a feeling of inferiority among them.

39) Stir Up The Waters To Catch Fish

Identify the weakness of your enemies and you will know what they react to. You use this knowledge against them. Lay a trap with bait and then wait; create a false alarm for your enemies and their response will reveal what they hold dearly and better still weaken themselves by exposing their flags. That’s where your target.  Put your rivals off-balance by identifying the clink in their vanity through which you can crash and control them.

Avoid being reactive as rage, desire, and emotions make you weak and predictable. Don’t be impulsive. Strategically, emotion and wrath are always counterproductive. Always maintain your calm and objectivity. However, you are at an advantage if you can annoy your enemy while you maintain your calmness.

40) Despise the Free Lunch

It pays to be generous and it pays not to accept free gifts. Whatever is given freely is dangerous. Avoid freebies. Behind every handout, you will find a trick or hidden motive.  It is better to pay for something that is valuable. More so, it is prudent to always pay the price in full without cutting corners. You avoid deceit, gratitude, and guilty.

Be generous with your money and allow its circulation. Generosity is a magnet and a sign of power. Misers usually miss out on opportunities. The investment cost of buying someone influential a cup of coffee can’t compare to the value derived from the meeting as you can be given wisdom, be pointed in the right direction, learn from your past mistakes or better still better opportunity.

The 48 Laws of Power Summary (Law 41 to 44)

41) Avoid Stepping Into a Great Man’s Shoe

Unapologetically be your best self. Never make it your responsibility to make yourself better at being another person. Learn to be yourself. Go your own way. Be comfortable with who you are and work upward making yourself better. Run your own race.

What transpires first always seems more original and better compared to what comes after. For one to outshine a great man, a double effort is required for any achievement. Never be lost or stuck in the shadow of the great men or circumstances that are not your own making. Change your current state by creating your own image -name, and identity.  Get power by being a shining star in your own way.

42) Strike the Shepherd and the Sheep Will Scatter

Leadership is very crucial for an army- it requires a General. Often the glue that sticks everything together comprises a few key individuals at the top in any type of organization, hierarchy, or social group. The same can be said to be true as we find that the cause of the trouble is linked to that one strong person who is the stirrer, arrogant person, and disruptor of peace and prosperity in a society.

Troublemakers when given the opportunity will always make other people yield to their influence. Never wait for trouble to escalate or try to negotiate with troublemakers. Learn to neutralize the influence of negative leadership by ensuring that you isolate or banish them. Strike at the origin of misfortune and the sheep will scatter- the trouble will cease. 

43) Work on the heart and Minds of others

Pressuring others will eventually bring a reaction that works against you. It is wise to make others follow or work with you on their own accord. You can achieve this by operating on their personal weaknesses and psychologies. Minimize resistance by manipulating their feelings, and working on their fears and what they cherish most. Being ignorant of the minds and hearts of others will birth dislike from people.

You should influence people and win friends as suggested by Dale Carnegie. It is more beneficial to be known for your helpful demeanor and kindness. Be agreeable or face the repercussion of being different. Practice being down to earth or else society will eventually catch up with you and humiliate you.

44) Disarm and Infuriate with the Mirror Effect

When you find yourself in a new setting, leave your values behind and adapt to those of your hosts, and your survival is guaranteed as you become just like them.  You like people who like you, who are like you. Match other’s energies. Eat their foods. Find common ground. Speak their language. You do this; even the most suspicious individuals will drop their guards and appreciate you.

Although a mirror always reflects reality, it can as well be a perfect tool for disguising oneself. You can mirror your opponents by behaving like them and manage to conceal your motive.  The mirror effect embarrasses and mocks your rivals. You lure them with the illusion of sharing similar values. Any person who agrees and appreciates other people’s norms and traditions can never be resisted. People are likely to change presumed notions about you once they realize you are like them.

The 48 Laws of Power Summary (Law 45 to 48)

45) Preach the Need for Change, but Never Reform too much at Once

Change is imperative but human beings like the comfort that familiarity offers. In everyday life, people are creatures of habit and tend to resist change whenever possible. The chaos, disorder, and the unknown are disruptive and undesirable to people even though they are for the good. What is required is small incremental changes that build up over a period of time. Too much change can be traumatizing and result in a rebellion.

The change should be implemented in small stages as you clear away anxiety and hatred. It is prudent to observe and respect people’s norms and traditions. In cases where change is inevitable, introduce it to the people as a gentle improvement of the current way of doing things. Do this and it will be your ticket to success in any new environment or power position.

46) Never appear too perfect

Going with the words of the famous Francois de La Rochefoucauld, ‘It takes great talent and skill to conceal one’s talent and skill.’  Our society is dominated by a power play that revolves around; the mast and the student or slave, domination and submission, authority or superiority and inferiority: Pride, arrogance and envy, jealousy, and hatred. It is a vicious and destructive cycle in the long run. Everyone wants to be a king. No one wants to be a pawn. It’s wise not to want to envy or be envied, not to be a queen or a king.

Be the faceless person behind the power.  Don’t be a visible target. But be there to win in the game of power regardless of whichever side loses. It is always dangerous to appear better than the rest of the people.  You arouse envy among people whenever you come out as faultless or without blemish. Show people that you are human by admitting to making mistakes and you will manage to turn away jealousy and become approachable.

47) Do Not Go Past the Mark You Aimed For: In Victory, Learn When to Stop

Stop whenever you attain your set goal. More so, learn when to take a loss and move on. Never push too far or you risk losing all. The period of greatest adversity is usually the moment when victory is achieved.

With a win, there is a tendency to be overconfident and arrogant. You become overambitious and take in more than you can chew.  Never let success crowd your head. Remember, nothing can replace a well-thought-out plan and strategy.

48) Assume Formlessness

Resisting a new order is a futile attempt. Remind yourself when tempted to rebel that it is your fault- you failed to foresee the change and adapt to it in time. As stated by Bruce Lee,’ You must be shapeless, formless, like water.’ Water always takes the form of whatever item it is poured into; it will take the form of a jug, mug, or even a pipe. Be adaptable; adapt to circumstances. Embrace reforms constantly. Don’t fight change.

Recognize that change occurs everywhere and in everything.  Be formless and fluid. Nothing lasts forever. When a change is required, don’t hesitate.  Go with the seasons as they are presented before you.  Avoid becoming rigid. Prepare for future opportunities as nature favor those who are prepared and ready. When you assume a shape or fail to conceal your plan, you give your foes something to attack you with. Always be in motion and adaptable never giving your enemy a target that they can strike.

The 48 laws of power: Who is this book for?

This is quite an intriguing book that should be read by any person that aspires to be powerful and at the top of their game.

Politicians, business people, leaders, and many other cadres of people should read this book. It is worth having it in your library and books collection too.

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