I Don’t Want To (and what I do)

I don’t want to scale a company and 10x revenue

I don’t want to optimize the conversion funnel

or split test ad copy

or design high-converting landing pages

or explore new advertising channels

or create an evocative brand

I don’t want to author SEO content with clickbait titles just to get traffic

or be an authority for marketing’s sake

or offer yet another program making plenty of promises that will only marginally be kept

I don’t want to be a middleman in order to capture value

or buy low and sell high

Or be booked solid for the next quarter with clients because that’s what success looks like

I don’t want to build an app and harvest data

I don’t want to follow a proven method for success

or sell products on Amazon

or make a living teaching others to make a living

or just do it for the money

I don’t want to hire influencers or become one myself

I don’t want to overcome objections and close the deal

or send product flying off the shelves

or educate prospects on competitive advantages

I don’t want to empower customers to play this same game

I don’t want to raise capital and fixate on ROIC, ROE, or IRR

or reduce Customer Acquisition Cost

or increase Lifetime Customer Value

I don’t want to forge strategic partnerships

or identify efficiencies and improve processes

or spearhead new growth initiatives

I don’t want to apply standard operating procedures 

or buy Best in Class or be Best of Breed

I don’t want to chart key KPIs and model it all out

I don’t want to monetize anything at all


I don’t want to do these activities because it’s unclear why they’re needed.

It seems we worship on the Altar of Entrepreneurship in the Cult of Malignant Capitalism.

Perverted incentives and capital looking for a return create indiscriminate growth. 

But what’s needed? Why give time to these activities? To what end?


I want to scale community and 10x the connections between us

I want to optimize the organization of resources and our common causes

I want to split test different theories of change  

and design solutions that create more vitality and aliveness

I want to create long-lasting projects that consider all the stakeholders involved

I want to author guides that build the skills necessary for healthy individual functioning

and be an authority because I’ve done something worthwhile

I want to offer a vision and viable solutions to our most intransigent problems

I want to be a middleman in order to facilitate new relationships

I want to buy just what we need, nothing more, and share what we can

I want to leverage technology to create more well-being

and explore new ways of being, thinking, and doing

I want to build regenerative agriculture everywhere and harvest real food

I want to follow the winding road of discovery

and sell products locally for reasonable prices

and make a living with something I love to do

I want to hire the disadvantaged and downtrodden

and overcome predatory business practices and all forms of injustice

I want to send products right back to the manufacturer or not have them manufactured to begging wth

I want to educate children on how to function as an adult

and empower each and every one of us to take a stand

I want to raise capital and fixate on human impact and biodiversity restored

I want to reduce poverty, hunger, and extreme wealth stratification 

I want to increase housing affordability, community resilience, and human happiness

I want to forge new alliances between unexpected tribes

I want to identify systemic leverage points and improve our processes of governing, legislating, and educating

I want to spearhead new regenerative initiatives

I want to apply bespoke policies fit for the uniqueness of your people and place

I want to buy locally and keep the value in our communities

I want to chart key system interactions and model how targeted nodal interventions can make a difference

I want to monetize all of this effort enough to live well and not a penny more


Why do we do what we do? 

It seems the rules of the game define the actions of the players. 

Is the game voluntary? Can it be opted out of? Can it be reformed?

They say don’t hate the player, hate the game. Yea maybe. 

Or maybe that’s a cop out to avoid individual responsibility.

Maybe it’s a coping mechanism to justify actions that an honest look would render meaningless, or worse, harmful. 

A game is nothing without its players.

Which one am I playing? What’s the natural outcome of this game?

Is this one the self-terminating zero-sum one? 

Or the non-zero one that continues on?

Maybe all it takes is the right mission with the right team and a little luck. 

How To Improve the Information Commons

Today’s information landscape is riddled with misinformation, sensational headlines, overt and covert agendas, and “fake news”. 

The “commons” is a concept that refers to the shared resources that we all rely on. It originally referred to a group of farmers who must rely on a public patch of grass to feed their cows. If any one farmer hogs too much of the grass, the quality of the commons reduces and all townspeople have less milk and meat. 

We must look at the information landscape as a commons that needs our collective tending if we are to have health in our human community. 

I recently made these two graphics as guides for how to practice discernment with media found in the wild.

Five Questions Worth Asking

What if the question I’m asking myself right now is the biggest determinant of my future? What if by asking that question I embarked on a grand inquiry to discover the answer leading to previously unimagined realities?

The following five questions are worth asking:

What’s mine?

Look, act, and dress a certain way. Drive a certain car. Adopt a certain set of beliefs. Be a card carrying member. Depict life on social media a certain way. Signal success through material accumulation.

This is all PROGRAMMING. It’s designed by people who seek to have influence, consciously or unconsciously, and push an agenda that serves their interests by manipulating our beliefs and behavior.

But what’s really mine? Versus what’s my parents? What’s generational trauma? What’s advertising? What’s social pressure? What’s an old paradigm? How am I conforming? What doesn’t serve me?

Beneath the veneer and layers of programming is the true self. The authentic expression of our own needs, desires, and potential untainted by agenda and narratives about what success and happiness is. What can I shed? What’s mine? What’s true?

In Service Of What?

Proposition: one meaning of life is to be in service to others by upholding the universal law of reciprocity.

Language is important. Not “In Service TO What”. TO what suggests subordination to that which is being served. Rather, OF what, suggests what is being served flows through, with me as part of a whole.

Many people are In Service To Money. Servants to the system. Some are In Service Of Others. Many are in In Service to Themselves by default.

What’s greater than me that is worth it? What’s required of me to answer this question? What is worth my time?

Where am I needed?

What did I do when I first knew?

When I first knew of our environmental degradation? When I first actually saw the injustice prevalent across the globe and in our backyards? When I first recognized our fractured political system? When I first glimpsed the disconnection from ourselves and our communities? When I first saw we’re optimizing for the wrong outcomes?

Twenty years from now if my young adult child turns to me and says, “Dad, [insert system] is pretty messed up. When did you first know? What did you do when you first knew?”

What will I say? What did I do?

What’s my unique contribution?

Because each of us has something truly unique to offer hiding beneath the layers of programming and fear.

Does the tribe need another [insert my role here]? What’s my zone of genius? How do I build trust in the value of what I have to offer outside of the financial compensation for it? What lights the fire inside me? How far am I willing to go to find this? How uncomfortable am I willing to be? What won’t I sacrifice?

Life wants nothing more than for us to bring forward our unique contribution, to be in our gift, and offer it to others.

What’s my legacy?

From ashes to ashes and dust to dust, if there is one thing to be sure of, it’s the timely end to all human lives. And where we’re going material goods have no use (unless you’re being mummified with your gold to prepare for the afterlife like the ancient Egyptians). So what’s the point of all of this?

Maybe its children. Or charity. Or building something great. Or useful. Preferably useful and life sustaining. What endures after we’ve taken our last breath? Will the Presidents Club or that sweet media room crystallize my contribution? What do I choose to have meaning?

The How Takes Care of Itself

Even though these are “what” questions they get at our Why.

Don’t worry about the how. The how takes care of itself.

Yes, it’ll be hard work. But it’ll be easy to do because we’re clear on our Why.

Invest attention in getting clarity about what’s most important.

Remember that the path is directional. Inquiries evolve.

It’s never too early or too late to ask these questions.

Henry David Thoreau said “the mass of men live lives of quiet desperation.”

What if the way out of desperation is asking questions like this?