THEME OF THE WEEK: #1: 2018 in Reflection | #2: My #BeYourBest 2019 Themes
As I reflect on 2018, it truly has been an incredible year. It’s been a year of growing pains, development, magical moments and the odd smattering of frustration.
I’m fully energised for 2019 – in part because I know I can Be More, Do More and Give More in comparison to 2018. I know I can turn a 7/10 into an 8 or even 9/10, if I can can make material progress against my 5️⃣ Themes, and work on my mental game of gratitude and happiness.
This is my last Body & Mind Progress Journal of 2018. I reflect on some achievements and areas of struggle. I also share my 2019 Themes, which you can hold me accountable to throughout next year!
I hope you enjoy the insight, take something from in personally for yourself, and feel comfortable to share your 2018 journey and 2019 goals on the AdapNation Facebook Community.
HAPPY NEW YEAR! x
#1 – 2018 in Reflection
As a reminder, here was (and is) my two year Body Goal I set in Jan 2019:
Here is how I looked at the end of my last cut in end of September 2018 (details in this 2018 W38 Journal):
Throughout the year, I’ve followed to the T AdapNation’s #HyperWorkouts programming, the IIFYM+ Thrive Eating Approach, following the principles behind 10-Step Guide To Diet Planning, and going on 3x +5 to +10% Bulks and 3x -15 to -25% Cuts.
I’ve offered insights into my progress throughout the year in our Body and Mind Progress Journals.
I’ve also followed the Dieting & Eating Out and Healthy Tips For Road Warriors approaches throughout the year, as we eat out very regularly and have had a month in Oz, 10 days in Disney World, Christmas and other Celebrations to enjoy whilst keeping to the big picture goals.
I feel pretty good about progress this year. I’ve got stronger, bigger, more capable and have more confidence in being able to meet my end of 2019 goals than ever before. In part, this comes from the ability to control my trending body weight with precision, and in part it’s what I see in the mirror combined with the raw numbers.
Check out the below – a snapshot of body measurements from Jan 2018 to New Years Eve 2018:
I’ve made some great progress on Chest, Shoulder and Glute development. I’m satisfied with the growth in my arms and thighs, and even made some progress on my stubborn Calves!
As I’m three months into a four month bulk, I’m currently holding some extra timber around my waist, but nothing excessive.
What’s really interesting in 2018 is that I’ve got very close to my body size and proportion goals, but have increased my lean mass beyond what I expected I needed. With more growth on arms and legs for 2019 needed, I’ve upped my body weight goal up whilst keeping the target body fat percentage the same.
As I’ve been weight training properly and consistently since March 2017 – coming up to two years (and loads of improper training before that), I’m definitely in the ‘intermediate’ maturity level, meaning at best I can expect 6lbs of Lean Mass in 2019.
I think I need 3-8lbs of extra lean mass to hit my body size and ratios above, so if all goes according to plan 2019 should be ‘the ‘year’ of it all coming together.
Wellness of Body & Mind
Health of body and mind has been a big focus this year.
Eating as per the IIFYM+ Thrive approach has meant it’s been a year of optimal nutrition. Beyond that, I’ve begun to increase my intuition with food, where I’m looking for signs on what foods to avoid, have more of or reduce. Less from a calorie perspective, and more from a feeling of vitality and health.
I had my Microbiome tested early 2018, and have just ordered a retest from Viome. This will help me gauge my gut health, and whether my focus on nutrition, whole foods and diversity has paid off. It may even suggest foods I need to minimise based on my personal needs…
To drive greater health of mind, productivity and certainty of mood, I’ve implemented a morning ritual I’ve been consistent with for at least 6 months, in addition to defining my ‘perfect week’ so I know what good looks like.
I’ve introduced mindfulness practices deliberately into my life in 2018 – including guided meditation, binaural napping, deep parasympathetic breathing, night-time reading and more time outdoors in nature.
Sleep has been a huge focus in 2018, but I’ve still got a way to go. I’ve slipped in and out of respecting my sleep when the going gets tough at work, and I still struggle to get a restful and fully restorative sleep every night. I’ve optimised for 8 hours of sleep say 80% of the year, I follow my Top 10 Sleep Hacks (most of the time), but more needs to be done to commit to these principles. That, and preventing the need for the loo 2-3 times a night!
The net-net is that I’ve had so much more energy this year than ever before. My creativity and optimism has gone through the roof. I’ve been ill only once briefly whilst travelling abroad, whereas those around have been struck down a number of times.
I don’t seem to be expressing any signs or symptoms of disease or degeneration, albeit I still struggle a little with dry skin in the coldest months (probably down to the heating).
Merging Passion with Work
I quit my long-term corporate sales career in Q1 2018, and since May I’ve been 100% in on AdapNation. It’s been an incredible year when you look at the personal growth, outputs, achievements and anecdotal impacts for those who have implemented change in their life.
I can honestly say I’m the most at peace with myself than ever before, and every day I wake up with a hunger to get to work and create.
But let’s be clear, there are crappy parts of this new gig. There are recurrent duties which are a time sink and are not enjoyable for me. Time management and achieving daily objectives still continues to be a struggle. The business has been firmly established, but is still embryonic and without scaled reach or operations.
All that said, my WHY is crystal clear. My vision of the future is clear. I’m excited about the future, whilst exhibiting the necessary patience. Of course I want more now, but the below helps put this year in perspective for me:
- Website: 38K visits, 372 articles/blogs and 284K words written
- AdapNation Podcasts: 61 Produced, 6K downloads, growth accelerating
- #HyperWorkouts: 11 Training Blocks and 52 Workout Video released
- Social Media: From 0 to 3,400 followers & over 1,000 pieces of content posted
- Products: AdapNation’s first product in development, releasing Q1 2019
All this has been done with zero prior knowledge or expertise across many different disciplines and systems. All single-handedly. Tons of growth (and frustration), and makes for a much better equipped me into 2019.
In addition, I’ve been a voracious consumer of information this year:
- Books – Check out my reads of 2018 and recommendations. I got though 30 books this year.
- Podcasts – It’s hard to quantify, but likely listened to 150-250 podcasts this year, equating to at least 250h of audio.
- Education – Completed a years worth of weekly remote Nutritionist learning, avg 1.5h a week. On top of that, lots of adhoc googling and self-research!
Lastly, I’ve had the chance to connect, network and interview some great people this year. Big moments in a new career – developing relationships with the likes of Mike Matthews, Ben Coomber, Adam Schafer and Dr Tom O’Bryan.
Family was a big focus for 2018, as moments wasted cannot be reclaimed. My young girls are going to be teenagers and then adults before I know it, and I made a commitment to have a great year with them and make up for all those years of absence whilst crushing it in IT start-up land.
We had some great moments. From the day-to-day plays, cuddles and discussions, to my active involvement in their school and decisions about their life we need to make. I got to see them struggle and thrive. I’ve been able to understand them more than every before, and better understand how I might be able to help shape their future.
We’ve been on some great holidays, including a month in Australia and a couple weeks in Disney World Orlando. We’ve had an amazing Christmas together, been to the Cinema a bunch of times and had lots of fun moments dining out and visiting friends and family.
My relationship with Michelle has grown stronger, with a deeper insight into one another this year. That deeper insight has uncovered some stuff we need to work on together – to continue to develop independently and as a couple, so that we create the future that matches both our needs.
I’ve seen my family more this year than the last few years combined. That’s truly amazing. In the exposure, it has highlighted the need to do a few things differently next year to address some bad habits and cement an exciting future that matches all our independent needs. No easy task, but absolutely achievable.
Unlike the other stuff above, happiness and feelings of success, worth and contentment is hard to put into words. It’s not the Neo cortex logical part of our mind that decides whether we are happy, but the limbic system and it’s expressed feelings that define out current state.
This year has been a mixed bag from an emotional standpoint.
You may struggle to understand how, given all I’ve shared above. In truth, I struggle from time to time with a lack of gratitude, being too future oriented, not enjoying the now, being impatient, being hard on myself and not always doing the things that will make me and other feel happy.
I think it boils down to a couple of things:
- 2018 has been a huge shift in Identity, Career, Activity and Certainty (or lack thereof)
- I’m intensely futuristic and a deep thinker – exacerbated with a huge reduction in external demands for my attention (i.e. my prior career)
I’m always focused on more, better and optimising. I love to achieve big milestones. This I think single-handedly has prevented me from living in the moment. I wouldn’t change these qualities for the world, but I need to manage them better so I can enjoy the cool moments and moments of connection more frequently and intensely.
Don’t get me wrong, as I write this Journal I am deeply satisfied, grateful, proud and happy. It’s been an incredible year. Life is great, in part because we decided it would be. But, being totally transparent I know I’ve left a bunch of potential happiness on the table fo 2018, because I wasn’t deliberate and proactive in absorbing it.
Note to self – must do better.
#2: My #BeYourBest 2019 Themes
Ok, enough looking back already! It’s time to lift my gaze up and create the outcomes for 2019 that I will get to work on achieving throughout the year.
New Years resolutions aside (my family know what bad habits I need to fix!), here are the big-ticket themes I commit to:
1️⃣ Monetise & Systematise AdapNation
The passion and my why has made 2018 amazing, but it’s money and systems that are going to get this thing motoring in 2019. 2018 built the foundation of content, knowledge, trust with audience and basic systems. It’s time to offer some truly valuable products in 2019 in exchange for money that will fuel my enthusiasm and business growth.
Much more focus needs to go in creating systems off of the basic plumbing and processes that have been defined. There’s lots of inefficiency to address, and smarter decisions to make.
2️⃣ Exponential Audience Growth
It’s time to get out of this black box and let the world know about AdapNation. This will require better execution, higher-quality content and smarter more expensive decisions on how to get the AdapNation name heard.
3️⃣ Prioritise & Outsource
I do lots of things, and they all take much longer than expected. My speed is painfully slow at times. With a years worth of data and experience, I need to continue to prioritise the right activities that are aligned with my WHY, are adding value and are things I can do well. Moreover, it’s becoming increasingly obvious that I need help, so as I start to achieve Theme 1️⃣ in 2019, I need to seriously consider staffing, or at least outsourcing of some content production activities.
4️⃣ Enjoy The Moment
If 2018 can be so amazing but only feel like a 7 out of 10, then I’ve got to admit this gap is all in my head. In 2019, I need to push myself to more aware of the present. To enjoy the here and now, and commit to making my Wife and kids happy. This is simple, just not easy. 2019 will be less about the expensive big-bang moments, and more about enjoying all the other time!
5️⃣ Completing My Body & Wellness Journey
My body and health will be a life’s work, but 2019 has some explicit goals that I want to get after. For one, I’ll be hell bent on achieving my 2019 Body goal as stated 1st Jan 2018, and secondly I want to improve my Sleep Quality (objectively and subjectively) which in turn will drive up my overall life vitality and energy.
How Was Your Year, & What Are Your 2019 Themes?
Hopefully you enjoyed access into my life and mind in 2018, and in some small way it both enabled action and encouraged true self-honesty for you as you go about achieving your best life.
I’d love to hear from you. How was 2018 for you? What are you planning on working on and achieving in 2019?
Please share. We all can take power from the stories and insights from others, and I personally could do with learning and developing from your wisdom and lessons learnt.
Have an amazing 2019! You got this.
P.S. I’ll let you know how I get on with an update every 2-3 weeks… 🙂
Follow Steve’s Body & Mind Progress Journal as it unfolds. Comment if you have questions, ideas or motivation to offer, and please keep me honest to the above.