I see a lot of year in review posts being submitted and shared everywhere.
It seems like this kind of posts is getting more and more common every year.
And while I think it is very important to take time to reflect upon the previous 12 months, the usual, long and extensive style adopted by people makes it difficult to extract the gems from as many as possible.
Don't get me wrong: writing a long review for yourself is fine, but if you want me to read about your year, please provide an executive summary. Here is mine for 2016. Hope you'll get something interesting out of it.
I've decided to share mostly positive stuff. Because that's what matters.
1) A few things I'm very proud of (my victories)
Nerdy Makers (my main focus) is still alive and doing good. Globally, we picked awesome clients with cool products or projects.
I did an extremely good recruitment this year that allowed the point above. (Well done Rob)
I did a good job at training and enabling said new hire. Looking forward to keep doing that next year.
We learned a good deal regarding media, social media, marketing and story telling. I'm seriously extremely proud of the quality of what we create at Nerdy Makers.
We shipped a few products as experiments: a platform for hockey enthusiasts and a way to keep all the local startup community on the same page (the latest actually got some interesting traction).
My second company (Uppsala Tech Community) is in shape. We went through rough times but managed to work things out. Big shout out to my cofounder Johannes and to Lucas who helped us this year.
We connected the tech and startup communities online.
We successfully released a magazine (printed and digital) that I designed with the help of my absolute partner in crime (Frida)
We launched a coworking space in the center of Uppsala. I'm grateful for the people who have joined us and that are now part of this adventure. Emil, Carl, Simeon, Susanne, the Elks and all our friends visiting from time to time :)
I've tremendously improved the way I communicate about my work and achievements. This was a very important topic for me. I'm happy to say that I objectively got better at it in 2016.
2) How did I achieve these victories?
I definitely surrounded myself with the right people. Cofounders, employees, coworkers, mentor and friends. I feel so grateful to have you around.
I worked really hard, I showed up. Consistently.
I feel happy. The happier, the more confident and productive I am. And probably the smarter as well.. That didn't come by chance, I genuinely, actively work on it through self-development and thanks to Stoicism. Fix your happiness if you want to perform at your maximum.
I think I've been better at accepting my flaws. There's a lot of things I wish I had done differently. A lot of things I wish I had done better. But in the end, I am who I am. And I'm starting to be ok with that. Most of the time.. 😃
I kept moving. I made a lot of bad decisions. A lot, lot. But I kept doing stuff and making progress anyway.
I've worked out enough. That also contributes to my well-being / happiness. I've been pretty active in 2016: I ran quite a lot and I've now started to swim before going to work. Exercising is one of the best time investment to increase your work and productivity (and happiness).
I made time for extra work activities. If you know me a bit, you know how much I love hockey. Well, I spent a lot of time talking about hockey, promoting my club and attending games. I've also been pretty good at taking off time with my fiancée during the weekends. Don't forget to recharge your batteries.
I maintained a deep relationship with my mentor. We talked often and I was always completely honest. It would have been easy to skip but we showed up! It helped me so much to become a better version of myself.. I owe him a lot.
3) A few valuables lessons learned this year
Some things take time. I'm starting to understand that some ideas, concepts and projects need to mature. Even though you have the will to execute on them right away, sometimes you can't because the timing isn't right. And that's ok :)
Accepting things you can't control. This one is very Stoic. Some things just don't depend on you. Apply effort and pressure on the things you can influence and change. Accept the rest as is. To quote one of the great Stoic, Marcus Aurelius: "A willing acceptance of all external events".
When things go wrong, ask yourself if you aren't just in a phase. Sometimes all you have to do is to hold tight and wait for the sky to clear.
4) My favorite book in 2016
I've read about 20 books this year.
Some good, some bad.
Here's the one I recommend:
- The Elon Musk biography by Ashlee Vance. Even though it's a totally different kind of entrepreneur, I found it very interesting and inspirational. Recommended!
5) Some things I want to do/develop/improve in 2017
Besides the goals for my companies, I want to put my personal focus on the following:
- Keep on building up my knowledge about Stoicism. Develop a better practice: more structured and regular.
- Improve my Swedish. Actually try to speak a bit instead of always replying in English.
- Create more opportunities for myself to speak in public.
- Actively further develop some of my relationships.
- Keep on helping as many entrepreneurs as possible.
Of course, I also fucked up a lot of things. As I said, I made a lot of bad decision. Some situations I didn't handle properly.
But all in all, it was a good year. It was an improvement, which really is the only thing that should matter.
I built some solid foundations to keep improving and executing in 2017.
I wish you all a happy new year! Let's crush it :)