Seneca Lake flooding.

2018 was a year. I can’t really say it was a “great” year. Just a year. 365 days. In reality, 2018 was a bit of a dick.

In August, my hometown was hit with a  epic flash flood that inflicted $75k of damage to our just-completed lake house (nope, not covered by insurance). We faired much better than others, but  it was a bit of a gut punch, given how much of our own hard work we’d put in to get the place where it was. 

Just a few months prior, My wife’s mother passed after a couple year battle with ALS. It’s a shitty disease, and she did an amazing job of not letting it define her, and choosing to do things on her own terms. 

All the above, while raising a toddler, running an evolving small business, while Laura works 80-100 hours a week in residency does not lend itself to “thriving” per-se. But surviving is a win, and Lida (our 20 month old) doesn’t seem to be phased by the craziness.

I’m actually amazed I didn’t fall much further short of the goals I outlined a year ago. Clearly thats due to the loads of help from friends and family to get through the tough times. Dozens of people who volunteered their time to help with the storm damage. The people who watched our dog, our daughter, and us as we pushed through the year. Thanks, all of you. 

Anyway, looking back.

By the numbers:

  • Countries Visited: 3
  • Days Abroad: 15
  • Days with OOO on: 11
  • Books Read: 26 (15 non fiction, 11 Fiction)


  • Re-do the Micro Resolutions – Nope. Not even a little bit. 
  • Play hooky  Goal: 2x per month. I’d say I managed 1x month to sneak out with Lida and/or our dog George. 
  • Date night –  Goal – 2x per month. I’d say we averaged 1x per month. Not bad all things considered. 
  • More volunteering – Goal: 10 hours a month. Check.
  • Disconnect  – Goal: No internet on Sunday’s until dusk. Nope. I did manage to hold off until noon about 25% of the time. Even just that has a huge impact. 
  • More live music – Goal: 6 shows. Meh – Managed to make it to 3 plus a music festival. We’ll call that a win.


  • Spend 20 days in the park – Goal: 20 days. Reality 8. 
  • Try staying put for a month – Nope. But I did travel less than any year in the past 10. 
  • 2 weeks at the lake – Check.
  • 10 Days abroad: Check. 7 days Ireland. 7 Days Thailand. 1 day Qatar


  • Weave in variety – Semi-check. I did manage to spend a couple days rock climbing, got out on the paddle board a bunch more and hit the trails for a MTB ride at a couple times a week during the spring/summer. 
  • 3 Adventure races Goal: 3. We’ll call this one a semi-check. We only did one race, but it was a fairly intense 72 hour. So sort of like three. 
  • Fix my knee Goal: End the tendonitis. I finally got around to having a procedure a month or so ago. I think there is a decent chance it has been successful, given it doesn’t throb just from sitting anymore.provided I don’t fuck it up by doing too much too soon. First allowed run is 1 mile on Christmas day. 


  • Productize our services – We ended up focusing nearly all our effort on the below software product, but we have managed to do a host a few intensive workshops which we really enjoy, and are much more scalable than adding more and more long term client engagements. 
  • Create a real product – Check and check. We managed to launch a real software product this year. It’s still rough around the edges, but we’re really proud of the progress we’ve made. Check it out will ya.
  • Macro-manage – Very much a work in progress, but I feel like we’re heading in the right direction. 
  • Write more – Fail. I published a total of three posts on my blog in 2018. And while I pushed a bunch out via Linkedin, I wouldn’t call that a win. 
  • Maintain – Goal: Keep profits steady. Check. We lost a big chunk of our client base at the end of 2017. To manage all of the above while treading water is a real, win. (Thanks LG team)


About my annual review: For the last 8 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. As categories  Life, Fitness, Business & Travel work best for me, but if you’d like to do your own I recommend checking out my buddy Chris’ Template to get started.

NeilCallanan Truths