1) I read a lot of books. There are very few unique problems and nothing’s new under the sun. So whatever I’ve faced over the years, whatever I wanted to learn about, there was always a previous body of knowledge out there I could draw upon.
The internet greatly amplifies this pool but increases the need for filters.
2) I have had great mentors. Mentors are a type of filter. They help you strip out the noise and the bullshit and to benefit from their past. They enable you to cheat the Ben Wicks idiom: “Experience is something you don’t get until just after you need it”.
3) Naivity, gullibility, a certain type of stupidity that enables me to try things because they appear to be simpler than they actually turn out to be. Otherwise I wouldn’t bother.
4) Tenacity, long-term thinking. Remember: if it was easy, everybody would be doing it.