Mike Erwin joins us as a guest teacher for this class! CEO of The Character Center, co-founder of the Positivity Project, and co-author of the book Lead Yourself First, Mike is passionate about inspiring leaders across the country. His secret sauce to leadership? Solitude! (More specifically, freedom from the input of other minds.) In this class, Mike debunks the assumption that great leaders must always be accessible and uncovers the personal + organizational benefits of leaders who seek out periods of solitude. Want the competitive advantages of clarity, creativity, emotional balance + moral courage? Get your solitude on!
Cal Newport joins us as a guest teacher for this class! He is one of my favorite thinkers. He got his Ph.D. in Computer Science from MIT and is now a Professor at Georgetown. He’s also a bestselling author of a number of books. Given the fact that the fastest way to Optimize your life is to STOP doing things that are sub-optimal AND the fact that (for nearly all of us) our use of technology is the #1 thing that “Needs work!,” it’s SUPER important for us to figure out how to best use all the technology available to us WITHOUT becoming lost in a tsunami of inputs. Enter: Our new philosophy of technology use: Digital Minimalism.
We’re going to have a hard time actualizing our potential if we have a hard time getting out of bed. Energy is SUPER important. In fact, it’s the engine for our actualization. In this class, we’ll integrate a lot of the most essential aspects of eating, moving, and sleeping. But first, we’ll start by stepping back and recognizing just how important it is that we flip the switch in our minds—raising our standards and TRULY committing to being our best, most energized selves so we can change the world together, one person at a time, starting with YOU and me.
Here’s a quick look at our next class: Energy 101!
(You can get instant access to dozens of archived classes, hundreds of PhilosophersNotes and Optimize +1s and this class when we release it by becoming an Optimize member: optimize.me )
I created this class after my friend Matt McCall (who helps run the Pritzker Group Venture Capital fund) asked me to do a talk for 60 of their portfolio CEOs. He was thinking “Optimizing for Supheroes 101.” I loved that idea and decided it would be the perfect context to share my absolute best stuff and here we are.
In this extra-long class, we start by connecting “Optimizing” and “Hērō” to their ancient Greek philosophical roots then we proceed to walk thru how to go about integrating ancient wisdom, modern science and practical tools to harness our soul force to build strength for two such that we can create our best, most heroic lives.
Technology is, obviously, awesome. We’ve been using “tech” tools for 2.5 million years since our protohuman ancestors first picked up a stone and used it as a tool. 1.8 million years ago, “we” figured out how to make an acheulean hand axe which was a pretty epic innovation at the time.
So, with the advent of smartphones in what’s known as the “Input Age,” I’m not suggesting we should all become tech-smashing Luddites. But… (And this is a big but!), I also don’t think we should underestimate just how much we play the role of addicted users caught up in the mix of a $7 TRILLION attention economics (/mind-hacking!) industry.
The solution: Become Optimizites—use technology wisely to become the BEST you rather than mindlessly let your 1 million-year-old prefrontal cortex get hacked all day every day.
In the class, we walk through the costs of addiction, then talk about how to conquer it so we can sculpt our ideal lives.
Breathing. It’s easy to take for granted but when you stop to think about it, it quickly becomes obvious just how powerful it is. Get this: You can live for weeks without food and days without water but, of course, only minutes without oxygen. Plus: Your brain uses 20% of the oxygen you consume while breathing is responsible for 70% (!) of your body’s detoxification. Yet… If you’re like most people, you’re probably doing this simple, should-be-easy fundamental wrong. In this class, we’ll look at why CO2 is (somewhat paradoxically!) actually the variable we want to be Optimizing if we want to get the O2 out of our hemoglobin and into our cells. Then we’ll look at the Three Rules for breathing perfectly as we Optimize your breathing for calm, focused energy.
We’ve had a lot of people ask for a class on Public Speaking. It tends to freak a lot of people out which is why Idea #1 features Jerry Seinfeld’s quip that most people are so afraid of public speaking that they’d prefer to *receive* a eulogy than give one. (Hah.) Alas, if you have any fears over speaking in public, you’re not alone. Enter: Common humanity. And, enter my own stories about my fears and my favorite ways to alchemize that energy. (“I’m excited!” + “Bring it on!” + threat vs. challenge, etc.) Other Ideas include Rule #0 (aka, it’s not about you), Rule #1 (aka BE you—amplified!), systematically organize (and overprepare!), plus Optimizing your pre-shot routine before letting it rip!
Ready to conquer anxiety? Our first step is to embrace the fact that it happens and then we’ll quit making it worse as we choose a target (calm confidence!), get our fundies in order, remember to breathe (deeply + properly), turn the serenity key in our brains, do some Olympic-style focus training so we see challenges not threats as we exit our mind and enter the moment. We’ll also look at how to create calm confidence in 5 steps and how to tap into infinite calm confidence. Tame those gremlins and rock it!
I created 25 classes before we got to money/wealth/etc. That was deliberate. (Virtue for the win!) And… It was fun to create this class and share my thoughts on how to create true wealth. First idea? We’ve gotta remember that the Ultimate Currency/the reason we do *anything* is to be Happy. Therefore, we want to run our pursuit of material abundance through that lens. Then we talk about how to become psychologically wealthy (billionaires, baby!) (and look at how to Optimize your balance sheet), redefine economics from a spiritual plane and then… We talk about how to make and enjoy some more money. The theme? Wealth thru Profound Service. We talk about investing in the best stock on the market: You, Inc. And, we integrate Cal Newport’s Passion + Craftsman mindsets with what I call a “Servant” mindset for a new hedgehog-like concept plus we look at Ray Dalio’s 5 Steps to Getting What You Want in Life model—which is super powerful, kinda like WOOP by an uber-practical genius. Plus some other goodness I hope you enjoy!
Want this year to be the greatest year of your life? Here's how to go about making that happen. We’ll start with a quick inventory of what’s awesome. And, what needs work. Then we’ll move on to imagine THE (!) best version of you in 10 years and 25+ years (eulogy you!) while reflecting on how to make the prior best version of you your new baseline. Then… It’s all about being that version of you NOW. We’ll revisit the fundies and your Big 3 while creating Masterpiece Days, avoiding the pickles and kryptonite dust, WOOPing everything and playing the game that is our lives as well as we can.
I've been thinking about how I can help you optimize (technically, I'm pretty much *always* obsessing about it) and realized I should probably do some more behind-the-scenes videos to capture my (often messy) thought process about how to take Optimize to the next level and do my life's work while serving you profoundly and creating an exemplary business that scales in the process. This video is the fruits of that. Hope you enjoy!
Optimize with us at https://optimize.me
P.S. Notes on my Top 10 favorite Books
P.P.S. Let's do this!
Welcome: Your Heroic Quest + Making it a Reality
Our world needs heroes today more than ever before. We need YOU to be a Hero. We hope you enjoy this video from Friday Night of our weekend immersion workshop: Hero Training 101. Let’s do this!
Watch the entire weekend workshop here:
I love Stoicism. In this class we take a quick look at the cast of characters (from founder Zeno to Seneca + Epictetus + Marcus Aurelius) and then dive into the ultimate goal of Stoicism (hint: become bff’s with your inner daimon so you can experience a state of well-being and flourishing) along with the practices that help us apply this wisdom to our lives. We’ll create energized tranquility and equanimity as we have fun becoming our own ideal sages.
Here’s another behind-the-scenes look at how I’m thinking about The Big 3: Energy + Family + Service as we raise our standards to heroic levels. Primary questions: What does you at your best look like in each domain? What will you experience/who will you be when you are your best? (Aka: The Why) And, most importantly, what ONE thing will you do every.single.day to make that ideal self a reality? Hope you enjoy! More on Hero Training 101: optimize.me/hero
Join us for my first ever offline immersion workshop. It will be at our new Optimize Oasis in Ojai in April. We’re calling it Hero Training 101. It’s time. Learn more: https://optimize.me/hero
So I figured out my one word for 2017: Hērōs. Popped up in meditation this AM. It’s basically the perfect expression of what we discussed yesterday: Community + Consistency. Here’s how I’m thinking about Hērōs + Virtues vs. Bling on this fine first day of 2017! Here’s to stepping into the highest version of ourselves and serving profoundly!!!!
Turning the last page on my 2016 calendar is a pretty exciting thing for me. (Hah.) Here’s a sneak peek at what’s going to be important for me in 2017. You? Let's make 2017 the Greatest Year Ever!! Join nearly 10,000 people Optimizing at https://optimize.me/join