UP Case Study #1


Built a startup that reached a valuation of $1B+ in 1 year.


  1. Secure liquid or illiquid assets of $1B within 5 years
  2. Be prepared to manage a successful startup
    1. Select a lucrative challenge from a wide array of options across many industries
    2. Be prepared to manage all aspects of the business myself or evaluate the skills of whoever is managing it
    3. Develop relationships with potential co-founders, employees, vendors, investors, customers and anyone else with whom I’d be regularly spending time as an executive in the business
  3. Develop a robust social life
    1. Frequently have meaningful experiences with people I respect and admire
    2. Develop storytelling, empathy, and other tools for personal charisma
  4. Cultivate deep, persistent peace of mind
    1. Research and implement relaxation techniques like yoga nidra, hypnosis, relaxation meditation, visualization, and NLP
  5. Cultivate a highly focused, effective mind
    1. Research and implement productivity techniques like applied rationality, focus meditation, visualization, Wim Hof method, hypnosis, and effective scheduling
  6. Release research paper, publicize it, leverage it for career benefit, and stop actively working on non-monetizable aspects of research
  7. Optimize the use of AI and human assistants such that I only do work I enjoy or it is not cost-effective to outsource


  • Type: Individual Max UP -> Individual Variable UP
  • Length: Ongoing, 5 years and 3 months as of this update
  • Support:
    • 158 UP Coach Calls + 337 UP Coach Tasks + 122 UP Assistant Tasks + 0 Other Personal Team Tasks = 617 Tasks
    • 305 UP Coach Hours + 86 UP Assistant Hours + 0 Other Personal Team Hours = 391 Hours


This ambitious software engineer chose to do an UP to achieve his life goals. He was smart, single, a workaholic, and had no major obligations to attend to. He was deeply immersed in self-development. He was doing well in life besides emotional and financial issues. He was perpetually overworked, which resulted in limited time to invest deeply in his UP.


The participant’s UP included specialized coaching from a carefully selected coach, access to a team of behavior change experts and assistants, and use of 50+ digital behavior change tools. He set a number of short-term and long-term personal and professional goals near the beginning of the UP. His team helped him advance on these goals through regular calls and ad hoc task completion for him personally and for his various companies.


Protocol Completion


Top 3 Successes

  1. Built startup in 1 year that reached a valuation of $1B+, in line with strategic life plan
  2. Developed spiritually to a much deeper level and formulated clearer personal views
  3. Substantially improved psychological wellbeing for significant periods of time

Top 3 Failures

  1. Let startup eventually die
    1. Did increase personal wealth by >$1M at times and increased the personal wealth of colleagues and supporters by substantial amounts
    2. Is building new startup in similar space in a reasonable way
  2. Let physical health degrade at times
    1. Did implement rigorous fitness and nutrition regimens for significant periods of time
  3. Didn’t connect with people as much as needed for optimal wellbeing and productivity
    1. Did make substantial progress with building personal relationships, including securing a handful of lifelong friends and supporters


  • It was a good UP overall that was enjoyable for both the client and UP Coach and was relatively easy to design and execute
  • The client made substantial progress on his goals below his original expectations but relatively in line with updated expectations
  • The client was unclear on how to estimate UP’s influence on his overall goal attainment given the intervention and he evolved so much over the years
  • The UP Coach estimated a 10% impact on the client’s overall goal attainment over the UP

Client Summary

“Never get too high by yourself.”