Before I dive in, I need to share my gratitude. Thank you for the moments–all of them. Thank you for walking with me and letting me walk with you. Thank you for believing in me. And those who vocally didn’t–you’ve pushed me to focus. To go further, dream bigger and be conscious about action. Thank you.

This 2016 post is written in the following format:

  1. Where I’m heading (2016 goals)
  2. Where I’m coming from (2015 goals & outcomes)

This is an action oriented post. I will take more time to reflect on the year in later posts this week and in my journal.

Where I’m Going

In 2016 I will be happy.

I will surround myself only with people that make me happy. I will make a decision everyday choosing who I spend my time with. I will be intentional and clear in my relationships. I will not deal in nebulous situations. I will stretch to become the person I want to be by surrounding myself with the people who I admire. Sincere people that show remarkable self-awareness, passion and a propensity for action. Folks who want to be happier and are excited to chose to share their time/space with me. Folks who see my potential and help me to unlock it while trusting me to do the same for them and holding their own standards, expectations and opinions.

I’ll continue to work on my discipline, patience and trust so that I can be a model for the ‘person I want to spend my time with’. Likeminded people attract each other. I will share my excitement with them. Excitement to spend time with them. And I will strive to see them at a deeper level–for their good and their bad. And to accept them in that light.

In 2016 I will stretch an incredible amount. My stretch will focus in these three areas:

  • Financial
    • Close debt [by end Q1]
    • Create savings [recognizable by mid Q3]
  • Physical
    • Be healthy [Check-in for progress on Feb 5th]
      • Run/Gym/Jiu-Jitsu. Do whatever you must.
  • Mental
    • Be happy [every single day]
      • Meditate four times a week
      • Surround yourself with the right people
      • Set boundaries
    • Do what you love [Take stock early Q2]
      • Do meaningful work
      • Be open about what hurts and what helps. Source the power of group thinking.
    • Support those around you [Check-in with self daily]
      • Help your friends to more, be more and achieve more

Where I’m Coming From

2015 was a hailstorm of a year. There was tremendous uncertainty. A ton happened. Nothing unmanageable. There was some scrambling. And I hid a lot of that, afraid of what people would say. But I took an opportunity to speak at TEDx to bring my failures and fears into the light. Though painful, the vulnerability felt great. The strength to do that is credit to the people around me that reminded me it’s not such a big deal. And often little credited (by me), the big man above who has instilled in me abilities that I do not celebrate nearly enough.

In 2014 I wrote that I would spend 2015 laying low & learning. I wouldn’t start a new company. I’d work for other people and other companies. I did that. I worked for two top tier groups, albeit in menial roles that grew me but haven’t stretched me to my potential. The goals I wrote for 2015 are listed below with outcomes and analysis.

I’ve copied my goals and commented outcomes below.

Key: Red: Fail, Green: Crushed it, Orange: In progress or Strikethrough: didn’t even try

  • Mental-
    1. Find a mission you believe in; an amazing group of people & product. Be present and invested every moment.
    2. Discipline: Routine, Workout, Duolingo
    3. Self-control: Fasting, Dieting, Self-imposed restrictions & abstains
    4. Greater capacity for handling stress
      1. Develop internal leadership & coping skills. Be able to access & practice values in the hardship.
    5. Work on tougher problems. Connect dots. Journal more.
  • Physical-
    1. Meet United States Air Force weight requirements within the first quarter of 2015. [USAF has fallen from my priorities for 2016]
    2. Invest heavily in Jiu-Jitsu; be in the dojo 2-3 times a week within 2 weeks of a new apartment.
    3. Find the right diet for you. Spend Q1 with Meats & Veggies. Limit bread & rice.
    4. Get to bed by 11:00 or 6-8 hours of sleep every night [to be fair, I did this for a few months]
    5. Dress like a man
      1.  Fresh cut | Suit cut [I learned to shave with a single blade. no razor or handle. Imma be fresh ery’day ya’ll!]
  • Emotional
    1. Know your worth. [The more time I spend with myself the more I like being alone.]
    2. Love. [This year showed me that I could love, be loved and be incredibly happy and content. With a partner, with friends and with those around me.]
    3. Chase moonshots. [This is work oriented. I keep taking menial roles. It crushes my creativity. Lots of thinking and action involved here for the end of 2016]
    4. Let things happen. Think less. Live more. [I’m a natural strategist]
    5. Clean up your solar-system. Don’t play with people that don’t serve you. Serve others. Cut ambiguity. Transparency. [I crushed this one. so good. so damn good.]
    6. Be there person you’d want to be friends with. 
    7. Light up the room. Keep it short, light, & happy.
      1. Be tactful in communication. Mind your tongue.
      2. Recognize how great people are; remind them.
      3. Think 10x before saying one thing.

This year I learned that I’m incredibly bright, talented and collaborative. For 24 years I looked at myself as less than. Teachers always told my mom that I had potential. But now I am learning how to exercise that potential. I spent this year focused on delivery and action. That’s helped me in this realization. But I won’t fool myself– it’s all about the right people, the right timing and a strong sense of self. Everyday we have a choice. There’s no such thing as too late or too far in. Everyday is another opportunity to start over or to build from the day before.

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