Casey Neistat on living with intention, being a wartime CEO, and why connection is a superpower

Building Blocks: Actionable insights to build an Intentional Life

Hey everybody,

Here’s another batch of actionable insights to start your week off right, so you can be more intentional with how you live, work, and create.

Let’s get started.

Insight 1: 10 Stoic lessons on living with intention

If you want to upgrade your journaling habit (or any introspective exercise you do), watch this video and write out your reflections on the 10 concepts Casey Neistat and Ryan Holiday cover.

It’s veiled as “10 Stoic lessons on productivity,” but it’s actually about living with intention.

This is the most powerful, value-packed video I’ve seen in a long time.

Check it out:

Insight 2: Adapt to your situation

Running a company in peacetime (when numbers only go up and you’re strolling in a vibrant field of green) isn’t the same as running one in wartime (when there is not bottom and you’re drowning in a sea of red).

And right now, the water levels are already neck-deep.

In this article, Ben Horowitz dives into the differences between “Peacetime CEOs” and “Wartime CEOs,” how each approach is effective in the right circumstances, and why most business books don’t prepare you to run a company in wartimes.

“In peacetime, leaders must maximize and broaden the current opportunity. As a result, peacetime leaders employ techniques to encourage broad-based creativity and contribution across a diverse set of possible objectives. In wartime, by contrast, the company typically has a single bullet in the chamber and must, at all costs, hit the target. The company’s survival in wartime depends upon strict adherence and alignment to the mission.”

Horowitz wrote this in 2011, but it feels timely given the economic downturn we’re in.

Even if you’re not a CEO, the concept of adapting from peacetime to wartime business strategies is intriguing.

Insight 3: Connection underpins our potential

If we want to have a positive impact on the world, when so much of what goes on around us seems out of our control, what can we do?

Seth Godin takes a unique approach by reminding us of our true power to effect change—connection:

“We really don’t have a lot of choice about yesterday. Here we are, many of us with more leverage and power than any human on Earth had just a hundred years ago.

​In the last few decades, so many areas of culture have moved forward that defenders of the status quo are becoming exhausted trying to defend what was. And they sometimes express that exhaustion through anger, division and vitriol.

​The good news is that we have exactly what we need to make things better. If enough of us stand up and lead and connect, we’ll continue to get closer to what’s possible.”

If you want to reach your potential, and help the world reach its, try focusing on connection instead of division.

More unites us than divides us, if we’re willing to look for it.

Read the full article here: The arc of history.

Question for the Week

Where are you unintentional with your life?

Think of your routines and workflows—when do you coast, drag your feet, zone out, or go on autopilot?

If you want better results, focus your awareness on these.

Share Your Insights

Know someone who’d love this content? Share it with them!

My goal is to help entrepreneurs be more intentional with how they live, work, and create.

So if you enjoy Building Blocks, I’ll be forever grateful if you help me spread these insights by sharing this issue with other entrepreneurs.

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Let me know what you think and what you’d like to see in future issues. I’m always working to making Building Blocks more valuable for you.

Until next time—memento mori,

​Corey Wilks, Psy.D.

Licensed Clinical Psychologist

Executive Coach


Course (Cohort 2 Starts September 5th): Intentional Life Design