To say I’ve had a varied and interesting career is possibly an understatement, but I’ve learned a lot along the way and my whole flirting with death experience eventually led me to embrace stoicism (recommended site) which has resulted in a level of focus that I haven’t experienced in a couple decades, which got me started thinking on what exactly I want to do with the rest of my life.
I think it’s important to clarify here that I likely think of work and life differently than most; a true work/life integration is what I am constantly striving for. To me they are one and the same, so when I talk about work or life, I’m really talking about both.
After a couple months of pondering, I have finalized a few basic tenets that I’ll be following going forward when making life decisions:
- Leverage technology but don’t work in the technology field – I’ve spent the vast majority of my career working on technology implementation and support and to say I’m burned out on it is an understatement. It’s now becoming a commodity market as well – and will continue to be commoditized further – which is not exactly the best place to be in if you’re looking to do the type of work I want to do.
That said, being able to leverage technology in industries where it isn’t fully utilized is a game changer. I can now look at a small business and have a good idea how it will look 10 years down the road based not only on their technology investments – which are certainly important and necessary – but also on how they leverage that technology to accomplish their business goals.
- Investment in community – I didn’t used to think of community much, at least in the way I do now. I used to disdain the idea in many ways actually, but when I ended up in the hospital I discovered that I both had a community around me and that were they lifesavers. They jumped in to help however needed, generally made Holly’s life infinitely simpler, and truly demonstrated to me for the first time the value of having mutual support in my life. I literally don’t know how we would have managed without them.
Having seen the value of community, I now feel a distinct need to build a better community around me, so this is a key decision point for me. Our businesses will have Community as a core value, our systems will be designed to support our local communities, and we will help people move forward in life.
- Generational wealth – Everything I do will help build generational wealth in one way or another. This does not mean that I’ll be working all the time, but I’ll continue to increase my work life integration by doing things I love every day, I’ll work to improve the community around me, and then we will reinvest the profits in new businesses with the same ethos.
Wealth in and of itself is a nice thing, sure. However generational wealth can ultimately impact thousands in a relatively short time frame of a century or so while focusing on building wealth solely for the here and now will impact many, many less people.
In the end, we’ll help others build the same for themselves and their community. Generational wealth is what builds free societies, and I am a big fan of freedom.
- Build & Grow – This is my favorite thing to do. While I like to think I’m adept at operations, it’s not my favorite thing to do. I’d much rather build the systems that others execute on, setup the reporting that will allow us to inspect what we expect, and watch the resulting growth.
So Holly and I are starting up Rytāvi Corp, a family owned holding company with the express purpose of building, buying, and growing boring businesses. Our first business is actually smack dab in the middle of starting up, and I’ll write more about it once it goes live in early July.
The goal is to keep the family of businesses complementary, focusing on service businesses, hard assets such as self storage and short term rentals, and investments in publicly traded companies that share our core values.
It’s an ambitious goal for sure, but I’m confident we can execute on it, and I am also confident it will make us better human beings in the end.