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My 2018 Review

In 2018, I found I wanted to go backward to go forward more than I expected.

At work and in my writing and my service, I differently assessed where I was last year to plan for this year. Where 2017 featured many public facing advances (I became CEO! a creative piece of mine was published somewhere! I), my 2018 featured far more internal or private advances.

I am proud of what I’ve done. There’s more to do.

Below find both a recap of important milestones in my year, and, farther down, find a review of how I did on my 2018 Resolutions.

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2018 was a harder year for me than 2017. No surprise then that I think I learned more important lessons this year than last. I started the year in Morocco 🇲🇦 with my wife. I also spent time in Mexico City 🇲🇽 (my first pyramids!) with a close friend I get to see more now, plus road tripping in Kentucky with a childhood buddy and relaxing in Key West ☀️. I grew a beard. I became a far savvier whiskey 🥃 drinker, writer and thinker. I revived my secret handyman aspirations: running electric, installing faucets, fixing furnaces, framing basements and restoring old woodwork. I trusted my gut, and I led a reorganization of my company, aiming to give my team greater independence to thrive. I worked so damn hard. But I had so much fun too. I gardened and cooked and danced and sang karaoke 🎤 (one of my many quirky annual traditions, this one with my best friend) and celebrated a Super Bowl 🏟 and, with my sister, I threw a big surprise party for my father. I read more than I had in years. I launched a podcast to interview writing greats and traveled back to SXSW and SF for work. I thought about journalism and storytelling and personal finance and love. If you worked with me, or laughed with me, or believed in me or trusted in me or, hell, if you were even just patient with me, thank you. 2018 wasn’t my best year. But clearly if I get years better than this, I am the luckiest bird around. Whether 2018 was great or not for you, I hope you’re hopeful and grateful and inspired. I am, and I’m thankful for that.

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Find my full archives here.

  1. JANUARY: Start submitting: I submitted fiction to a few publications but I came to an important conclusion. I want to focus on a single longer-term project I have. So I’ve resolved to set aside shorter fiction for now. [FAILED]
  2. FEBRUARY: Be healthier: I (mostly) succeeded in my temptation bundle of only having a drink when I’ve been to the gym. I’ve done a pretty good job of going to the gym regularly. I also, uhm, sorta, made progress on portions. [PROGRESS]
  3. MARCH: Return to French: I did an admirable job staying with my French learning to the summer but this fell off in the second half of the year. I’d like to return. [PROGRESS]
  4. APRIL: Be a great board member: I’ve stepped off one of the four boards I was on this year, though I then stepped into the chairman of another. [COMPLETED]
  5. MAY: Finally sync married finances: We did meet with a financial planner, and we had several important conversations but there’s a lot more work to be done here. [PROGRESS]
  6. JUNE: Advance publish project: This resolution ran into my first one, and I recognized I had to pick one of them. This didn’t move forward. [FAILED]
  7. JULY: Be a better CEO: I am proud of how much I delivered on this, considering how much time and energy this took. I led a company reorganization that feel distinctly my responsibility. [COMPLETED]
  8. AUGUST: Drink whiskey better: I got smarter about what I drank, why and my understanding about it all. I took a long-awaited trip the Kentucky Bourbon Trail, and I learned quite a bit about Pennsylvania’s own tradition. [COMPLETED]
  9. SEPTEMBER: Find my own platform: I wanted to explore a new creative project that was entirely my own to feel out my own creative platform, and I did so with a writing process podcast[COMPLETED]
  10. OCTOBER: Be a better mentor: I took several opportunities to embrace more thoughtful approaches about mentorship: asking questions and serving as a sounding board for younger and/or differently experienced people than I to whom we felt I could be supportive. [PROGRESS]
  11. NOVEMBERComplete the novel manuscript: I didn’t finish this, but I made progress and moved forward a plan. [PROGRESS]
  12. DECEMBER: Finish the basement: I didn’t finish. I did advance this with plenty of father-son time. [PROGRESS]