The 10X Rule by Grant Cardone: Summary and Notes

the 10x rule cover

 “As long as you are alive, you will either live to accomplish your own goals and dreams or be used as a resource to accomplish someone else’s.”

Rating: 7/10

Related Books: If You’re Not First, You’re Last, The Compound Effect, The 4-Hour Workweek, The One Thing, Relentless

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The 10X Rule Short Summary 

The 10X Rule by Grant Cardone is a book on success. It argues that to be successful, you must be willing to work 10 times harder (10X) than everyone else. Cardone says that you should approach success as a duty, obligation, and responsibility. To be successful is the ethical thing to do. The 10X Rule is an excellent book that champions commitment as a way of achieving extraordinary results.

What Is the 10X Rule?

To be successful, you need 10X more effort and commitment than the average person. That is the assumption behind the 10X rule.

The rule requires that you act in a wildly different way than you have been doing to achieve your wildest dreams.

Success needs a grander mindset than most people have. If you are not yet successful, you have reason to suspect both your actions and thoughts. 

Limiting the success that you desire is a violation of the 10X Rule. Be willing to overextend yourself to the point that others think it’s unreasonable.

Mistakes people make when setting goals:

  1. Mistargeting. Setting objectives that are too low
  2. Severely underestimating. It often takes more energy, time, and money than people are
  3. Spending too much time competing. Domination is the way to go
  4. Underestimating the amount of adversity. More problems than anticipated are likely to crop up

Why the 10X Rule is Vital

Miscalculating the effort that you need to achieve your goals will leave you disappointed and discouraged. 

It is wiser to assume that the goal you are trying to achieve will take 10 times as much effort, time, and money. If it doesn’t, then great but if it does, you will be mentally prepared.

When it takes more effort than estimated to achieve set goals, many managers move the finish line instead of increasing activity. Great managers push people to do more at the risk of coming short rather than move the target line.

Applying the 10X Rule also allows you to plan for unforeseen circumstances.  Such circumstances include employee problems, lawsuits, economic swings, shifts in technology, and so on.

What Is Success? 

There are 3 crucial things about success:

  • Success is important. Every community values success. 
  • Success is your duty. It’s the ethical thing to do. Success is your duty, obligation, and responsibility.
  • There is no shortage of success. Success is not a zero-sum game, there can be many winners. 

Assume Control of Everything

Take no prisoners in your path to success. Don’t make excuses.

“Success is not something that happens to you; it is something that happens because of you and because of the actions that you take.”

When playing the game of success, don’t play the victim. Assume control of everything that happens to you even if it’s not to your liking. 

“People who assume the position of victim will never be secure—simply because they elect to turn over responsibility to another party and because they never elect to know for themselves what they can do.”

Approach every situation as someone who is acting rather than being acted upon.

Degrees of Action

Failure comes from operating at the wrong degree of action.

The 4 degrees of action:

  1. Do nothing
  2. Retreat
  3. Take normal levels of action
  4. Take massive action

All degrees of action require energy and time. The question is, why waste your energy and time achieving average results or no results at all?

Massive action is the most natural state of action while “normal levels” of actions is the most dangerous of the four levels. The middle class and average people are trapped in a vicious cycle of mediocrity. 

“Average thinking and actions will only guarantee you misery, uncertainty, and failure.”

Competition Is for Sissies

Your goal should be to dominate not to compete. With domination, you will be immune from competition.

The first step to dominating is to decide to dominate and the best way to dominate is to do what others refuse to do.

For example:

Find something that your competitors are unwilling to do because of their size or commitments. Expand when they are contracting. More importantly, apply the 10X Rule.

Obsession Isn’t a Disease; It’s a Gift

Obsess over success. Because to dominate your sector, you must dominate your every thought, interest, and consideration.

If you are not obsessed with the things that you want, you will spend the rest of your life making excuses on why you didn’t get the life that you wanted.

Expand Never Contract

Contracting violates the concept of 10X Rule. When others are retreating, you should be taking steps that take advantage of the opportunity that their retreat presents. It is better to die in expansion than in contraction. 

Fear is the Great Indicator

Fear = False Events Appearing Real.

Whenever you are faced with fear, act promptly. Don’t let fear crowd your judgments instead, let it guide your future decisions.

Act when you are afraid because if you don’t, the fear will build up. Time is what drives fear

Don’t spend too much time preparing as it is often best to fail when doing something than to fail while over-preparing.

The Myth of Time Management

Work-life balance is a flawed way of thinking. It is better to be interested in abundance as opposed to balance. Successful people think in terms of all while unsuccessful people place limits on themselves.

If you work harder on the things in your life, you will find the time for everything. You don’t have to give up your career for family or vice versa. With the 10X Rule mentality, everything will work out.

Criticism Is a Sign of Success

When people criticize you, it means that you are doing something right. Criticism comes from getting attention. And to achieve serious levels of success, you must get attention.

People will say disparaging things about you to make themselves feel better. Your abundance highlights their deficiency.  

“Weak and overwhelmed individuals respond to others’ success by attacking it.”

 To handle criticism effectively, you must see it as an element of your success formula.

Customer Satisfaction Is the Wrong Target

To dominate your sector, you must think in terms of acquisition first and deal with customer satisfaction later.

Once you have acquired the customer, work to over-deliver on their expectations. Focusing too much on customer satisfaction misses the point of the 10X Rule and which is to be omnipresent or to dominate the sector that you are in.

Omnipresence will make your work easier because everyone will be talking about you and as a result business will start flowing your way.


“Excuses are never the reason why you did or didn’t do something. They’re just a revision of the facts that you make up in order to help yourself feel better about what happened or didn’t.” 

Excuses will never improve your situation. People who make excuses are slaves and victims and are destined to have leftovers and other’s scraps.

Successful or Unsuccessful?

Success has nothing to do with economics, education, or demographics. Success depends on how you approach things in life. Successful people simply think and act differently compared to other people.

To be successful:

  1. Have a can-do attitude. Approach things with the attitude that no matter what, it can be done.
  2. Believe that “ I will figure it out”. Don’t say I don’t know, say I will figure it out. 
  3. Focus on opportunity. See problems and complaints as growth avenues. 
  4. Love challenges. Be compelled and invigorated by challenges.
  5. Seek to solve problems. Separate yourself from others by solving problems or making situations better.
  6. Persist until successful. With persistence, you will multiply your success.
  7. Take risks. Successful people are willing to take risks daily. 
  8. Be unreasonable.  Don’t act according to agreed-upon realities. Create your own reality.
  9. Be dangerous. Throw caution to the wind and take massive actions
  10. Create wealth. There is money out there and it flows to those who create products, services, and solutions.
  11. Readily take action. Your success depends on your ability to take action today.
  12. Always say yes. Don’t turn opportunities down. Say yes until you can manage to say no.
  13. Habitually commit. Consistently commit to meeting your goals and engaging in activities.
  14. Go all the way. Don’t hold back. Don’t take any prisoners. 
  15. Focus on now. Utilize your now to build your future. Stop focusing on the past.
  16. Demonstrate courage. Face dangerous situations in spite of your fears. 
  17. Embrace change. To be victorious, you need to continually adapt.
  18. Determine and take the right approach. Determine what works and what doesn’t. 
  19. Break traditional ideas. Be a thought leader. Don’t be too focused on ‘how things have always been done.
  20. Be goal-oriented. Stay focused on your goals or you’ll spend your life achieving the objectives of others.
  21. Be on a mission. Create a mission that will change things for others significantly. 
  22. Have a high level of motivation. Be driven and stimulated toward action.
  23. Be interested in results. Value the results of your work over the time spent on the activity.
  24. Have big goals and dreams. Set 10X goals that are not ordinary. 
  25. Create your own reality. Create a different reality from the one others accept.
  26. Commit first – Figure out later. Be 100% behind what you start. 
  27. Be highly ethical. You should be driven by ethical obligations. 
  28. Be interested in the group. Take care of those around you. Their well-being matters for your success.
  29. Be dedicated to continuous learning. Seek new information and never stop learning. 
  30. Be uncomfortable. Get out of your comfort zone. 
  31. “Reach up” in relationships. Create friendships with people who are better than you. 
  32. Be disciplined. Complete what you start no matter how uncomfortable it gets.