This piece is about how I decide what to work on.

I am blessed with a brain that has strong, strong social limitations. I can track one relationship really well. Abe's got that slot. I can track maybe a dozen relationships poorly, but if I'm lucky enough to see the people on the other end regularly those relationships can still receive frequent enough updates to be called "current". Everything else is a wash. I'll be delighted to see anybody, but the odds are mixed that I'll recognize them, let alone remember our history on sight. (I can get there with some help, and I find people are kind; I am often helped.)

One tiny adjustment at a time, I have tuned my life pattern and position to fit my abilities and disabilities. I like how I live. I have a quiet-but-very-much-alive interior, and I experience the exterior as a wonderland.

Beginning from that description, it will not surprise you that my business is all about first-party relationships. It's about me, and you, and what I can naturally do that you naturally need, and the way we navigate a trade such that we find ourselves mutually supported, and trusted. What you do outside of our trade is your business; I couldn't track it if I tried. It breaks my brain to think about the relationships that other people have with each other. And so, all I have (and want) is me, and you, and the space between us. I didn't always understand this so clearly, but I still operated this way, out of plain and simple necessity. My understanding is more clear now, and I now operate this way consciously, intentionally. I have allied myself with my own nature.

My business is successful, by my own definition: I experience it as a center of health, and peace, and exploration. I understand this to be the experience of its other inhabitants, too. My business is also successful by many other definitions: it is stable, durable, reputable, profitable, interesting, and inspiring.

My part in this (and it is a large part) comes entirely from me, and you, and the space between us. I am referring to the universal singleton "you": the not-me upon whom I focus my attention and intention, where my focus is subject to all of the limitations I described earlier. Because this is the only way I can relate to the social world, it is where I get my information on what I might do next.

To make the point in reverse: I don't get my information from watching what you're doing with someone else. Not only is it impossible for me to accurately assess all of that, it's physiologically dysregulating for me to try. It stresses the hell out of my body. So I don't do it. And I don't ask other people to do it for me, because I am not building my life and health on what other people can do for me. I am building my life and my health myself, which means being 100-fucking-percent present with myself, and with you, and responding to what the sum total of my senses tell me about the space between us.

Business-wise, this means that I do not have a roadmap. I do not have a complex strategy. Competition is not a part of this. I am creating something new, not competing for what is. Instead, my business choices are functionally design choices: if the space between you and me is a room, and it has a smattering of furniture and art and light and whatnot already in place, how might I arrange it all such that you and I are both delighted? This isn't just about what's "needed"; it is very necessarily about delight -- because delight creates the desire to go on, and I only want to build a business where both sides of the transaction (me and you) want to return tomorrow. I'm not creating sustainability through willpower; I am creating sustainability through delight. And it's practical: delight can be trusted, because it has health as a prerequisite, with all of health's dimensions. As it enters that design space, my body knows if an arrangement is toxic. Even if the arrangement is interesting, even if it's technically sufficient, I won't experience delight, and I won't be intrinsically motivated to go on. So I aim for delight, seeking an arrangement of shape and color and light that creates delight for you and for me, knowing that delight means that (1) we both have what we need, and (2) we will both want to keep going.

That's it. That's all I do.

This model is sustainable, at the cost of predictability. Because this kind of decision-making is highly moment-by-moment, it's impossible to know consciously what the total shape will be a year from now. I say "consciously" because I think there are other parts of me that know, and they feed into my sense of delight or non-delight. But I, the conscious "I", don't need to know, because foreknowledge doesn't create health and happiness in the now. And all I wanna be is overall healthy and overall happy, in a way that naturally steers me towards tomorrow's version of that too.

The longer my history with this mode, the greater the array of collaborators and contributors around me that are compatible with me in this mode. My best friend, life partner, business partner, and husband is the most compatible person I've ever met. My team, the family and friends that have grown close, the fifteen thousand businesses out there who use what I've made -- all of those relationships are functions of me operating this way. It's incredibly stable. Looking at the rest of the world for a moment (because that's all I can really tolerate, lol), there are uncountably many people and businesses who are not connected to me, and that's so okay. Important, even. I'm not trying to win any share of the world, at all -- not because I reject it, but because it's just not relevant to me and how I move. All I need is me, and you, and an arrangement of the space between us that feels like delight. The cumulative effect of this speaks for itself, and -- for these purposes -- its name is Lightward.

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