“More than anything, you must think of carrying your map through to reflecting the territory.”
We believe that instrumental and epistemic rationality are extremely valuable guides to life.
The rationality movement is tackling an even bigger challenge: figuring out how to systematically improve the accuracy of our beliefs and systematically achieve our values. This is incredibly hard to do in practice.
An Upgrade Program (“UP”) helps you optimize your entire life and systematically achieve your highest value goals.
With rationalist-aligned people, UPs are generally between 1 day and 1 year long focusing on measurably improving whatever is most valuable for you given your unique values. That varies person to person, but generally revolves around your career, productivity, emotional wellbeing, physical wellbeing, financial security, relationships, personal safety, and/or emergency preparedness. We have science-based, partly outsourceable plans (including carefully curated tools, assessments, and resources) for optimizing these and every other area of your life.
For entrepreneurs, we also have a large set of meticulously developed startup templates, sample files, tools, and procedures. Our team has built 25+ organizations, cumulatively operating for 160+ years.
You can do your UP on your own for free or, if you find it cost-effective, use our aligned coaches, assistants, and wide array of specialists. We can do your personal and professional work with or for you and are especially good at helping you get unstuck from your biggest systemic challenges. Our aim is to save you thousands to tens of thousands of hours over your lifetime, which you can redirect into both your life’s work and your life’s fun.
In the Sequences Eliezer Yudkowsky said, “It was a mistake that I didn’t write my two years of blog posts with the intention of helping people do better in their everyday lives.” We wrote out our 450+ page, 1,157 step guide explicitly with the intention of helping people actually improve their lives, with nothing extra. We focus on the practical as much as possible. You can consider UP a lifelong course in instrumental rationality.
We’ve spent the last 20+ years researching and experimenting in self-development, behavior change, and goal attainment to create and augment the broad cluster of people now sometimes associated with the rationality movement. We started what became UP around the same time LessWrong came into existence. Many of the same philosophical roots that motivate the rationality movement also motivate UP.
Over this time we’ve worked with hundreds of ambitious, clear-thinking people in a 1-on-1 or small group setting and impacted thousands more indirectly. See our research on the UP intervention that has been borne out of that early work.
Our aim for the immediate future is to substantially augment the individuals and organizations working to solve the world’s most pressing problems, especially those focused on reducing existential risks from advanced technologies like artificial intelligence, synthetic biology, and nuclear weapons.
We believe we’re in for a radically transformative time and could use all hands on deck.
If any of this resonates with you–even if you don’t explicitly identify as a rationalist–please reach out. We’d love to help you systematically achieve your most valuable goals.
Also see our AI Safety Advocates page.
If you want to subsidize UPs for financially-constrained people doing high-impact work, please consider donating.