My Philosophy 

A few guidelines for approaching life

I believe it is important have a focused life philosophy. Basic guidelines enable you to have clear boundaries and an understanding of the direction that you are going.  I have been working on putting together a few ideas for my life philosophy and I wanted to share an early versio of them with you today.

My basic life philosophy can be focused into three main areas:

1. Pursue Excellence - In everything that you do, it is important to pursue excellence. Always strive to do your absolute best. Play your best cards.  Strive to produce great work.

2.  People Matter - We have a shared humanity. It is essential for us to respect our fellow man. We must respect and be compasssionate to the people around us.  People matter.

3.  Make Meaning and Money - There is an interesting saying that goes, "Some people are so poor all they have is money." I really believe that is correct, there are things in life that are more important that simply maximizing profit.  

This is very much work in progress, and I encourage you to consider writing one of your own. Feel free to remix this and make it better.  This is still the very early stage of this idea and I would like to continue to develop it as I grow.

Invisibility Prayer

The ego is often a hindrance.  We spend so much time worried about ourselves that we often forget to think of others or stay focused on our work.  Here is a short prayer to push back against the ego.

Dear God, please make me invisible. May I be truly humble and have quiet confidence. May I freely share my talents without any desire to impress anyone.

May I keep my head down and focus on doing great work without the need for a single person to notice. May I have zero ego. If you wish someone to see my work may I be grateful for the gift of being able to inspire another with the gifts you have bestowed upon me.

Please help me to have a positive attitude. People may be disrespectful, the day may fall apart and I may be tired, but help me to remain positive and grateful through it all.

From the third person

Here is a few lines that I wrote as a vision for the type of person that I am working to become. 

You walk into a room and see Dave Craige across the way. He stands confidently and looks happy and relaxed.

You meet him and he looks you right in the eye and is very kind. He is more interested in you than in himself.

You can tell that he loves his family deeply. And he cares for his friends.

He is quietly proud of the work he does and The Studio he is building and you can hear the passion in his voice.

He is very positive. He doesn’t spend much time on negativity. 

If you ask him about it, and get him to open up, he might even share with you some details about The Studio, the books and the upcoming projects and adventures he is working on.

A Work Philosophy

Work is an integral part of our life. Work is essential. I believe it is important to think deeply and approach work with a few guidelines and principles. Some of the ideas that I have in regard to working include the following:

Build great things - I believe it is important to strive to build great things. We only have a very short time on this earth, in that time we should focus on trying to build great things.

Building is not a perfect process. It is messy, things go wrong, and oftentimes you have to start over again numerous times. However, I do believe we should strive to be the best versions of ourselves and build as best as we can.

Do not harm–if you're going to build something, make sure that you try to not hurt people in anyway in the process

Head down / Invisibility–I really believe it's important to keep your head down at all times. Work quietly and let your work speak for itself. As we will mention elsewhere on this page, we value the invisibility prayer so as to reduce the ego and to focus on doing great work without having anybody to see you. Often times, what we've seen in the world of business is that there is a lot of ego attached to numerous activities. I think we should push back against this.I believe it is important to let your work speaks for itself.

People matter–if you are a leadership position at your company, it maybe easy to slip into a damaging mindset. This mindset is when you look at your coworkers and the people below you as simply an asset. We must always remember that people are human. We must value and respect them.

Yes, of course, there are times when a company needs to be downsized. There are individuals that do need to be fired. It is difficult thing. But I really believe we should approach these difficult situations with a humanistic and respectful approach.

The Eulogy of Dave Craige 

This was a interesting project.  I took some time to write out a eulogy of the person that I would like to be in my life.  Here is a version of it below.

___________

Dave Craige has died. He had a great run. He lived life to the fullest. We hope that He will be going on to go dirt biking in the green pastures of heaven. He is know for a few things. Here are ten of the most important.

Solid - Dave was solid. He was solid in his love for people. He was steadfast in his focus on his life's work. He was consistent, dependable and strong.

Love : He was known for love and kindness. He was kind and loving to everyone. He always tried to smile at everyone he met. His personality was strong willed but he worked hard to be kind. He loved everyone as best as he could, as unconditionally as he could. Love and compassion were central tenants in his life.

Wife : He cherished his bride. She was one of the most important choices that he ever made. He sacrificed all for her. He laid down his single hood and freedom and gave her a lifetime of deep love. They built up an incredibly strong marriage. They endured great challenges together. He fought back against the failures he had seen in his family and brick by brick built a solid marriage. They went on wonderful adventures. They laughed and laughed and laughed. He deeply loved her in a wabi sabi way.

Family : He loved and cherished his children. He said they were the "best things that I ever helped create". He spent extra time with them and patiently helped them grow. He always tried to put them before his work. He loved his two sisters. He loved his Dad and his Mom. He was loving and kind to his stepsister Gracie. He loved his step-mom Donna and he loved Lydia his niece.

Provider/ Life's Work : Dave focused and provided well for his family. He worked diligently to make enough money and gave his family a nice safe place to live. He was the leader of his family spiritually, physically, materially. He always worked to create high quality work in all aspects of his life and he hoped to inspire others as well.

Loyal friend : Dave was known for being a loyal and kind friend. He was good to always keep in touch with others. He would frequently reach out to people.

Creative : Dave was creative. He was constantly building. He built lots of different companies and experiments. He was always trying to improve the world around him.

Humor : Dave loved comedy. He loved funny pictures, jokes, movies. Everything that had a light side to it. He shared many jokes with his friend Bryan. He laughed at himself frequently.

Easy going : Dave was a first born. But he made a decision to be more easygoing. He let things slide. He fully accepted people as they are. He worked to love people without conditions.

Giving: Dave always tried to find opportunities to give. He tried to always donate to pretty much anybody that asked with the $5 project. He worked to help businesses grow in his entrepreneurship groups The Bunker and Bootcamp. He worked to help strengthen marriages and families in his mens group JoeStrong. He wrote 5 books and shared his ideas and principals with the world He was generous with his money like his friend Brandon Lata showed him how to be.

Fun and Adventures : Dave loved fun. He loved his dirtbike, bike and his skateboard. He loved to dance. He loved traveling all over, loved to meet interesting people. He traveled to over 30 countries. He bribed traffic cops, was almost thrown in jail in Mexico and skydived out of helicopters.

Ideal Day

What would you do if you could wake up and do whatever you wanted too?  What would your day look like.  What type of value would you add to the world?  The ideal day project seeks to explore that.  Here is my ideal day below. 

___________

If it is Gods will may I: Live simply and peacefully in a little apt or house. No clutter, just a nice simple place. The day starts the night before. Turn down lights at 9:30 pm. Maybe take a hot shower. Read for a few hours and be in bed before midnight. Sleep deeply.

In the morning wake up grateful to be alive. Wake at around the same time everyday. Appreciate the super comfy warm bed and the flat floors. Take a shower and be amazed by drinkable, clean, heated running water. Make bed. Pray. Practice Spanish with DuoLingo. Review my Eulogy and Ideal Day. Meditate. Make and eat a paleo breakfast and eat slowly. Make a green smoothie. After breakfast take a few minutes to chill before cleaning the dishes. Do some Unsit exercises.

Chill out time - Enjoy the precious present. Connect with people and learn new things by using the incredible internet with Twitter and FB on the amazing invention that is the retina iPad mini. (But not too much to get burned out)

Be thankful to have great food. Eat a healthy lunch slowly and appreciate the animal that gave his life for your meal and the fact that you did not have to hunt and clean the food. Be thankful for the truckers who brought you the food. The Mexicans that picked the lettuce and the Chinese who made your ikea table and the silverware, plate and cup. Team Alfred and the Postmates delivery guys. Chill for a bit.

Drive a clean, well maintained older model BMW or Tesla (another awesome invention) to The Studio. Be grateful to be luckier than 85% of the world and have a car. 12 minute or so stress free commute. Enjoy the drive. Be thankful for the Germans and the Chinese that made the car and the sailors that shipped it on a big ship over here. Appreciate the leather, the Sirius radio, the stability, the tiptronic, digital cruise control, the 4wd in the snow.

Walk into The Studio. Take a few seconds and be thankful. Be extremely grateful for the fact that I currently can work for myself on my own company. That I don't have to wear a suit every day. That I can have super flexible hours. That I have a nice physical space to work from. That my commute is basically non-existent. These are enormous blessings.

Work with the amazing Studio family. Be humbled by the fact that they are there helping you build your dream every day. Everybody enjoys working together. We crank through our projects for a few hours. We have upbeat but chill music playing through our high end KRK speakers. Bamboo.

We keep moving our businesses and projects forward. We stay focused on growing and treating our customers extremely well. We work on creating beautiful, valuable products that people want and love. When problems come up, and they will, we take them in stride and continue to move forward.

Green smoothie in the afternoon. Lunch in a bag. Do 10 breath meditations throughout the day.

Be appreciative of the income you currently make. Be thankful to have absolutely no debt. Keep saving money every month. If I need more money I can work part or full time at another company. Maybe a consulting firm. Inspirato, Uber, a marketing company, ecommerce site, Watsi, or Charity Water. Focus on consistently saving over 50% of paycheck. Keep over a year in savings account. Live well below your means and focus on life dollars and amazing experiences. Use a 2x1 miles card for purchases to save up for free travel.

Have fun. Laugh. Don't take it too seriously. Go to a challenging but rewarding Yoga class. Move around. Do some pull-ups.

Dinner with a great woman.

Take an evening walk or dirt bike ride. Read on the awesome kindle for a few hours. Think of three things I am thankful for. Bed. Sleep well.

On Saturdays the nice cleaning lady drops off food and cleans the floors and does laundry. We speak in Spanish.

And get a great sports massage a few times a month. Also right now stay busy and spend time helping people.

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