Law 1: Never outshine the master
Make your masters appear more brilliant than they are and you will attain the heights of power
When it comes to power, outshining the master is perhaps the worst mistake of all.
Law 2: Never put too much trust in friends, learn how to use enemies
The key to power, then, is the ability to judge who is best able to further your interests in all situations. Keep friends for friendship, but work with the skilled and competent.
Law 3: Conceal Your Intentions
Hide your intentions not by closing up (with the risk of appearing secretive, and making people suspicious) but by talking endlessly about your desires and goals— just not your real ones. You will kill three birds with one stone: You appear friendly, open, and trusting; you conceal your intentions; and you send your rivals on time-consuming wild-goose chases.
As Kierkegaard wrote, “The world wants to be deceived.”
Law 4: Always say less than necessary
Persons who cannot control his words shows that he cannot control himself, and is unworthy of respect. But the human tongue is a beast that few can master. It strains constantly to break out of its cage, and if it is not tamed, it will run wild and cause you grief. Power cannot accrue to those who squander their treasure of words.
Law 5: So much depends on reputation, guard it with your life
learn to destroy your enemies by opening holes in their own reputations.
Law 6: Court attention at all costs
By simply holding back, keeping silent, occasionally uttering ambiguous phrases, deliberately appearing inconsistent, and acting odd in the subtlest of ways, you will emanate an aura of mystery. The people around you will then magnify that aura by constantly trying to interpret you
Do something that cannot be easily explained or interpreted.
The more you are seen and heard from, the more common you appear. You must learn when to leave. Create value through scarcity.
You have only so much energy and so much time. Every moment wasted on the affairs of others subtracts from your strength.
Remake yourself into a character of power. Working on yourself like clay should be one of your greatest and most pleasurable life tasks.