2016 you slippery devil. The general consensus is that 2016 was the worst. I tend to disagree. Yes, we had to listen two highly unlikable humans argue for 9 months, withstand non-stop media coverage, our grabby president elect seems to have a fairly loose grip (see what I did there) on reality, and the Gators and the Bills were weak-sauce. But I’d make the case for optimism as follows:
- In 2016 Travel is cheaper than any point in history, you can travel far for very little % of an average income. I just bought a flight to Cuba for 300 bucks RT. Cuba.
- In 2016 Almost every city in America makes at least one outstanding beer.
- In 2016 You can get groceries, meals, or take out delivered to your home without ever talking to a human.
- In 2016 The quality TV, podcasts, sporting events (world series anyone?), is at an all-time high.
- In 2016 You can see an Instagram of a place like the Trolltunga half way around the world, and actually go there.
- In 2016 There are literal self-driving cars, virtual reality, and virtual assistants.
- In 2016 You can start a real, profitable business for $100 bucks. It has never been easier to build your own path upward. If they tell you otherwise, move along.
I recommend you turn off the news, log out of facebook, go on as many adventures possible, and drink a good beer now and then.
Anyway, Looking back 2016:
- Volunteer 10 Hours Per Month. Check and Check. Between serving on the board of the IM Able Foundation, and spending time with my”little” (who is 6’2″.) I was able to spend a good number of hours helping others every month, which is exactly what I was hoping for.
- Double Down on Dog Training: . Meh. George can catch a frisbee in a pretty badass fashion. He’s good off leash, and he’s a hell of a trail dog. He is also insane, and we have the house damage to prove it.
- Cut Mortgage in Half: 50% fail. We made progress, but didn’t get down as low as I’d like.
- Finish Last 10% of Remodel: Check.
- Break Ground on Lake House: . Check, loads of progress here.
- Read 12 Non-Fiction Books. 14. Side note: 6 of these were in one month during my 25 day digital detox (Alexander Hamilton, Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind (ok 75%), The Shelf Life of Happiness, A Foolish Voyage, Hillbilly Elegy, No Place to Hide, The Erie Canal, Age of Daredevils, The Immortal Irishman, Between the World and Me, Around the World in Six Years, Glorious Mis-adventures, Dispatches From Pluto, Issac’s Storm)
- 15 Days Overseas: 14. So close. (UK, Norway, Mexico)
- Visit Hawaii: America’s 50th state is also my 50th. Done and Done.
- Surf 5 Days: 3 Days. +1 point for those being on the North Shore.
- Canal Trip: 100% Fail.
- 1 Overnight Moto-Trip: 100%, fail. Barely turned the thing on.
- 3x Adventure Races: 2/3
- Bike Around Seneca Lake: . Fail.
- Mountain Bike 20+ Times: 16
- 5 Million Steps: 5 Million steps works out to about 13,698 steps 0r 7 or so miles per day. Almost made it man: 4,525,251.
- Create Detailed 18 Month Plan: One that outlines exactly why, how and when we’ll grow (or shrink???) Hard Fail.
- Hire 2x Top Tier Team Members: 1/2, but one feels like the right number
- Find 1 “local” client: Fail.
- Optimize Work Days, Times, Locales: I’ll call this a win, spending so much time disconnected really helped me to understand where and how I waste most hours.
- Reorganize Biz Logistics, Incorporation, Banks to PA: Check.
About my annual review: For the last 5 or so years, I’ve tried to look back at the year before and see how it stacks up, while also setting goals for the year to come. I find the exercise invaluable as a mechanism to be inspired to do more cool stuff. The Life, Fitness, Business, Travel categories work best for me, but if you’d like to do your own I recommend checking out my buddy Chris’ Template to get started.