My 2017 Year in Review: Achievements, Failures, Lessons Learned

Every year since 2014, I have been setting goals for myself. I did it in private. I didn’t want anybody to see or judge - me or my goals. I was in hiding. One of my primary intentions for 2018 is to go out of that shelter and be more shameless. Show my process, show where I am coming from, and where I am heading. That’s why - to kick things off - I am now also sharing this 2017 Year in Review.

I set 11 goals for myself in 2017. I truthfully completed 2 out of the goals I had set for myself. I failed at all the others - that’s an 80% fail rate!

There are many reasons, and I could find hundreds of excuses. But I know, that would neither be true nor productive. I am the master of my own fate, and 2017 was a prominent example of that. The beautiful thing is that I now recognize that I needed the years to build up to this point, to prepare me. This year, I had a very peaceful time in Germany for a few month, which was a beautiful experience. A very safe place and perfect for reflection. It gave me an opportunity to learn a lot about myself which in turn helps me now go forth stronger into this new year.

Notable Achievements and Events in 2017

Since the goals report about last year would be pretty depressing, I am going to leave out that part for this time. I am looking forward to sharing a much more in-depth goals report next at the end of 2018. But I want to highlight some of the things I count as events and achievements of 2017:

I wrote this list in under half an hour. I am sure I could find some more events, happenings, and successes. But rather than looking back for much longer, I want to look forward. It’s been epic. It’s been grand.

Lessons Learned in 2017

I learned a whole bunch in the past year. Reading books, getting to know inspiring people, and finding new quotes. Here are some of the lessons I will carry with:

  • EGO IS THE ENEMY: This is the title of the most impactful book that I have read in 2017. The author Ryan Holiday is a genius with words and especially with the Stoic philosophy. My ego is standing in my own way. Accept it, get to know what’s going on, and grow out of it.
  • Fear Indicates Where I Have to Go: I heard this quote by Tim Ferriss first. It’s powerful. I had a tough time with this in 2017. But I feel the courage mustering in me to change that in 2018.

“We suffer more often in imagination than in reality.”
~ Seneca

  • I Don’t Know What You Think? I think I know what others think or (even worse) will be thinking about what I do, publish, or am working on. I don’t! And the only way to actually find out what is going on in other peoples minds is to put it out there. Show myself or my products. There is no point in fearing the reaction preemptively.
  • Don’t Work for Free: I have a tendency to help for free. I generally don’t think that there is something wrong with it. But one of my biggest learnings is that I have to be ok with charging money (and demanding pay sometimes). If I spend all my time working for free? There will come a day when I will not be able to finance life anymore. And then I am no help to anybody.
  • Expensive is Valued Higher: I heard about this, I saw it happen, and I experience it first hand. If something is free, it’s not as valued. The amount of people that I helped for free and who by now have shut down their projects is insane. The people who paid? They are serious about what they are doing. It’s an investment. It has to make sense. It’s more valuable and appreciated.
  • Consume Less, Create More: This learning I brought over from late 2016 and it helped me tremendously. I challenged myself to consume less fast-paced media and news. Read more in books. Write more. Create videos. It worked out pretty well. But it’ll be even more relevant this year. If I want to be a creator, creating has to come first. I will make building, writing, or editing the first task of the day - instead of scrolling through Instagram or Facebook.

Outlook & Going Forward

Now, to make 2018 even more insane: I sat down and made a list of new goals for 2018 which. I will publish these in a separate goal setting post in the next few days.

I hope you had an incredible 2017 and that you took the time to reflect on it. I am looking forward to bringing a whole lot more energy into 2018. More drive to create, share, and experience for and with you.