This year, I did my annual review a little differently.
Instead of spending 20 hours reflecting on my year, I planned out my 2019 in 20 minutes .
I was curious to see if the system I created would actually work… Or if it’s just another idea that seems cool in the moment, but I’d quickly forget about.
Well, now that a month has passed, I’m excited to report that the 2-minute weekly review has been working extremely well.
It helps me stay on track with my achievements, visualize my progress, and gets me excited about pushing myself to the new limits.
Now, as January is coming to an end, I wanted to do a deeper review to reflect on what I’m doing well, what I could do better, and take you behind the scenes of my business and life.
I love doing that because so few people really show you the whole picture of what’s going on as an online entrepreneur, and for me it’s really fun to just share and document my journey.
That’s how this post was born.
Below, you’ll find out:
- What I want to achieve in 2019
- How I’m doing so far
- The most exciting projects I’m working on
- What’s going well
- What I can do better
- My plans for February
NOTE: This review isn’t for the faint of heart. It’s 6,719 words long, it’s super thorough, and it might take you over 20 minutes to read.
If you think you have what it takes, grab a nice cup of tea (or coffee), and dig in!
Table of Contents
- 1 Quick reminder: What I want to achieve in 2019
- 2 Days without cheat meals
- 3 My 2019 so far: How I’m progressing towards my achievements
- 4 January Totals & Big Picture:
- 5 Exciting Projects I’m Working On
- 6 What worked extremely well in January?
- 7 What can I do better in the future?
- 8 What’s next? My plans for February
- 9 Conclusion
Quick reminder: What I want to achieve in 2019
During my annual review, I created 6 achievements for myself (I’ve since added a 7th achievement, the “published posts”) that would make 2019 absolutely amazing.
I also created Bronze, Silver, and Gold Medal benchmarks for each of the achievements to gamify my year (and because I love a good challenge!).
The achievements and benchmarks I’m currently tracking are:
In the past, I’ve invested the majority of money I made with my online business into myself, my education, travel, and a few too many materialistic things like fancy clothes.
This year, I felt like I was earning too much money and saving far too little, so I decided to make it a priority to save more than I’ve ever saved before this year.
I didn’t want to just earn a lot of money – I wanted to have something to show for it.
I created savings goals that would make this year amazing:
- Bronze 20,000 EUR
- Silver 50,000 EUR
- Gold 100,000 EUR
Saving anywhere between 50-100k would feel amazing, and get me closer to creating an additional stream of income (I really want to run an amazing AirBnB someday) that would diversify my earnings, as well as create some additional security in my life.
This year, I’m working on a new Writing Membership program called The Lodge (more on that later on in this post).
I decided to make this program the top priority for my business as I feel like there’s nothing quite like it out there, and it’s a program that needs to exist.
Now in most cases, I’m not a big fan of revenue goals in business as I feel like they aren’t all that helpful if they don’t have a strong strategy behind them and can add more long-term pressure than excitement to you business, and take the focus away from the process.
However, when I thought about what would make 2019 amazing, I knew that having 50-200 Lodge members from all over the world connecting with each other and helping each other write more would feel amazing.
That’s how I created my benchmarks for this achievement:
- Bronze: 50 members
- Silver: 100 members
- Gold: 200 members
I’m not overly-obsessing or aggressively chasing these numbers, I’m mostly just using them to see how well I’m doing.
I know that when I read a lot, I can serve my clients a lot better, and I feel like I’m constantly upgrading my knowledge.
When I don’t read much, I sometimes feel like I’m plateauing, stuck in the same place, and not learning a whole lot.
That’s why this year, I created some aggressive reading achievements for myself:
- Bronze: 20 books
- Silver: 50 books
- Gold: 100 books
I know that if I read anywhere between 50-100 books, I’ll drastically deepen my understanding of certain subject and feel like I’ve learned a ton by the end of the year, which feels really exciting.
Since I’m a writing nerd, I religiously track every word and article that I write and end up publishing with my writing tracker:
In the past, I’ve written as much as 100,000 words in a month (that’s roughly 200 pages), and this year, I wanted to have a new writing challenge.
When I thought about what would really stretch me and help me get a ton of writing done, I came up with these benchmarks:
- Bronze: 200,000 words
- Silver: 500,000 words
- Gold: 1,000,000 words
Writing 1,000,000 words feels like an impossible goal and it’s quite unlikely that I’ll reach it, but as they say – shoot for the stars and you’ll at least land on the moon.
High Impact Work Hours
I’m not a big fan of working long hours. I’d much rather work for 2-4 hours a day , spend my time as best as possible, and have plenty of guilt-free time doing other things I love.
Having said that, I do think there’s something to be said about pushing yourself to do as much High Impact Work (work that really moves your business forward like writing) as possible, just to see how much you’re capable of.
That’s why I created a few achievements for myself that I feel would make this year an ultra-productive year:
- Bronze: 500 High Impact Work Hours
- Silver: 750 High Impact Work Hours
- Gold: 1000 High Impact Work Hours
NOTE: This doesn’t include things like coaching calls, meetings, randomly checking e-mail or posting on social media – it’s really just counting the work that will help me directly grow my online business.
This is an achievement that I “stacked” upon the Words achievement.
The idea was to not just write a lot, but to overcome my fear of publishing and publish more than I’ve ever published before this year.
That’s why I created a few achievements that I thought would stretch me to publish more this year:
- Bronze: 10 published posts
- Silver: 30 published posts
- Gold: 50 published posts
I know that if I publish 50 great posts on my website by the end of the year, my business will grow drastically, I’ll add a lot of value to my readers, and I’ll share my ideas with a lot of new readers that have never heard of me yer.
Days without cheat meals
This year I focused my achievements mostly on the areas of my life I want to work on the most, rather than trying to work on everything at once (I wrote more about my thinking in my lean review post).
I feel like my workouts and my relationship are going well so far so I didn’t create any quantifiable achievements around that, but one area of my life that definitely stagnated over the past few months was my diet.
It’s not that I eat really unhealthy throughout the day (I always have a fridge full of healthy food and frequent coffee shops that supply me with healthy lunches), it’s that at the end of the day, when I’m drained and I hang out with my friends, the chips on the table evaporate.
That’s why I decided to challenge myself to see how long I can go without binge-eating cheat meals:
- Bronze: 14 days
- Silver: 30 days
- Gold: 60 days
Because I got into a habit of binge eating in the evening and haven’t gone 14 days without a cheat meal in about 6 months, all of the above achievements feel really hard in the moment – but I know that if I build some momentum, they’re definitely doable.
I also know that if I don’t indulge in cheat meals, I’ll automatically lose some of the extra fat I’m carrying around – so I’ll hit two birds with one stone.
My 2019 so far: How I’m progressing towards my achievements
Ok, now that you have a strong overview of my achievements for 2019, let me take you behind the scenes of how I’m doing so far.
Savings: Silver, chasing Gold
My savings benchmarks for the first 4 weeks of 2019 are as follows:
- Bronze: 1538 EUR
- Silver: 3846 EUR
- Gold: 7692 EUR
So far, I’ve saved a total of 6770 EUR.
This means that I’ve surpassed the Silver medal by a large margin, and I’m not far behind from Gold, which feels really exciting. At this pace, hitting the Bronze medal feels like a piece of cake, and might just happen within Q1 of 2019.
What’s interesting here is that if you asked me at the beginning of the year which achievements I’d make the most progress on, savings wouldn’t be one of them.
I’ve been historically bad at saving / dealing with money, which might have to do with the fact that my parents are really good at it and tell me to save more all the time, and I’m a rebel and hate doing things that people tell me to do…
It’s not that I haven’t worked on it in the past – I’ve read plenty of books on the topics of personal finance, set up savings account systems, looked into investing… I was just bad at sticking with it for longer than a few months and inevitably stopped saving over time.
I had all the systems set up, but just like with my poor publishing habit , the issue wasn’t in the system – it was in mindset.
Then, at the beginning of this year, I had a conversation with my girlfriend about money, and we talked about how we approach savings, what we do when we earn a lot one month, etc.
I told her I was afraid of making a lot of money and spending it on unnecessary things within a few months (which has happened plenty of times in the past).
She told me that her thinking was “When you earn a lot of money in a short period of time, that’s when you can REALLY save a significant amount – rather than the smaller savings you can bring in month to month”.
That philosophy really resonated with me, so I immediately internalized it.
For example, when one of my 1on1 clients renewed their engagement with me, I immediately saved 75% of the revenue, rather than the traditional 10% I would otherwise, and so the savings quickly added up.
I also realized that my biggest monthly expense (my rent) just wasn’t worth it any more. I moved into a much more spacious apartment a year ago because I used to work from home a lot more, but eventually, as I started working more from coffee shops again, I didn’t end up using most of it, and I felt like I was burning money down the drain.
That’s why I decided to switch to a smaller apartment for the time being and let my landlord know about it. She wasn’t super excited about finding a new tenant though, so we agreed on a 500EUR/month lower rent if I stayed in the apartment for another year.
Since this would save me a lot of stress and time from finding and moving to a new apartment, I happily agreed and can now save an extra 500EUR/month, which will add up over time.
Savings? So far so good!
Lodge Members: Accidental Gold
My Lodge members benchmarks for the first 4 weeks of 2019 are as follows:
- Bronze: 4 members
- Silver: 8 members
- Gold: 15 members
Currently, we have 15 founding members in the program, so I’m technically hitting the Gold benchmark for this achievement.
Now I’ll be the first to admit that these numbers are a bit skewed. Out of the 15 members, some of them came from the Write More Every Day BETA , while the rest of them came through a small early founder promotion through my e-mail list in December.
I didn’t actively work on attracting new members into the program in January as I spent the majority of time developing The Lodge (more on that later in this post), though I’ll release The Lodge to the public in February, which will definitely increase the member count.
I’m currently pretty indifferent about this achievement and my progress towards it, though I’m certainly extremely grateful to have 15 amazing members in the program.
Reading: Participation Medal #1
My reading benchmarks for the first 4 weeks of 2019 are as follows:
- Bronze: 2 books
- Silver: 4 books
- Gold: 8 books
And so far, in 2019, I’ve finished reading… A big fat 0 books. Oops.
If I get more granular, I’ve definitely done some reading this month:
- I read 63% of the Emotional Intelligence Quickbook
- I listened to 25% of Emotional Intelligence 2.0 through Audible
- I read 1% of Mindless Eating , which I just started reading
- I read 37% of Accidental Genius
- I read 17% of When.
I haven’t done much reading this month, and I’m actually totally ok with that.
I know why I haven’t read much:
- Reading just wasn’t a priority this month
- I didn’t have the right systems set up
This month, I focused a lot more on writing and creating, as I felt like I had plenty of ideas to write about, and didn’t feel the need to come up with more ideas.
I also didn’t have a system set up like reading in swarms , or a reading tracker which I’ve successfully used in the past to read a lot over a short period of time.
I know I could have used some of my downtime and breaks to read more, as well as spent an evening or a weekend reading, but I chose to spend more time with my friends and my girlfriend this month.
All in all, this is an area I want to do better in in February, and I’ll create a new system for reading to do better.
Writing: Millimeters Away From Silver
My writing benchmarks for the first 4 weeks of 2019 are as follows:
- Bronze: 15385 words
- Silver: 38462 words
- Gold: 76923 words
So far, I’ve written a total of 36289 words, which is a mere 2,000 words away from my Silver achievement.
This month, it was actually harder for me to NOT write than to write, as I wanted to spend as much time as possible developing The Lodge, so I had to step on the breaks and write less than I could.
Still, I was able to almost snag a Silver medal, I created a backlog of blog posts that will get published a few weeks from now, and I created a consistent 2x/week publishing schedule.
Overall, I’m REALLY happy with my writing progress this month, and I’m looking forward to ramping things up considerably next month.
High Impact Work Hours: Easy Silver
My high impact work benchmarks for the first 4 weeks of 2019 are as follows:
- Bronze: 38 hours
- Silver: 58 hours
- Gold: 77 hours
So far, I’ve clocked in a total of 62.5 hours, which is a bit more than 15 hours / week and isn’t that far away from a Gold Medal.
I’m quite happy with my work schedule , and I feel like I’m more productive than I’ve been in months.
I attribute my current success with producing a lot of high quality work to my lean schedule and getting over the fear of publishing , as work definitely seems to drain me a lot less than it used to, feels easier, and energizes me more.
I feel like a Gold Medal is definitely within reach in the future, but I want to make sure that I do actually get in High Impact Work, not random busy work.
Published Blog Posts: Easy Gold
My published blog post benchmarks for the first 4 weeks of 2019 are as follows:
- Bronze: 1 post
- Silver: 2 posts
- Gold: 4 posts
By the time of writing this post, I’ve published 7 posts, and I have 3 more posts written and ready to be published.
Here are all of my published posts from 2019:
- 3 Steps to Creating a Lean Schedule And Taking Back Control of Your Time
- How I Stay Super Productive While Working 2-4 Hours a Day
- How to Get Over The Fear of Publishing Your Writing: My Personal Story
- Growth Mindset for Writing: 32 Mental Reframes to Help You Write More
- 5 Ways to Write More While Travelling
- The FREE Automated Writing Tracker Spreadsheet Template: 2019 Edition
- 2019: The Year of Writing
- The Lean Review: How to Plan Your 2019 in 20 Minutes
Given that my fear of publishing paralyzed me from publishing my content for years, I felt like publishing 50 posts this year would be a huge stretch goal for me.
It turns out that with the publishing momentum that I’ve already built, it might just be a walk in the park.
That’s why I decided to double my benchmarks for this achievement:
- Bronze: 20 published posts
- Silver: 50 published posts
- Gold: 100 published posts
This feels like more of a stretch goal, especially since I know I’ll take a few weeks off from work this year. We’ll see how it goes.
So far, I’m definitely extremely happy with my progress here, and I’m actually having fun with publishing without stressing too much about results of every single post that I publish.
So far so good!
Days Without Cheat Meals: Participation Medal #2
My benchmarks for consecutive days without cheat meals in a row for 2019 are as follows:
- Bronze: 14 days in a row
- Silver: 30 days in a row
- Gold: 60 days in a row
So far, the most days I’ve gone without a cheat meal this year was 4 (oops!).
On paper, that sounds horrible. In reality, it just means that I have maintained my body fat and weight throughout January, rather than losing some fat like I intended.
For most of January, this stressed me out, and I felt guilty about it. But lately, I realized that I just wasn’t in the right state of mind to go on a strict diet.
I would prefer not tracking every single thing I eat, sipping guilt-free Gin & Tonics and having pasta for dinner if I wanted to, rather than trying to lose weight and then giving into the temptations.
Because I really don’t NEED to lose weight right now and trying to hit this benchmark was creating a lot of unnecessary stress, I decided to de-prioritize it and take things a bit easier until April (I have a powerlifting competition in the end of March and I don’t really want to lose weight until then).
For now, I’ll take things easier here, enjoy life, work on my psychology of eating by reading books like Mindless Eating and pick up the pace as the summer comes closer.
January Totals & Big Picture:
In January, I’ve scored:
- 2 Participation Medals (Reading, Cheat Meals)
- 1 Bronze Medal (Writing)
- 2 Silver Medals (High Impact Work Hours, Savings)
- 2 Gold Medals (Published Blog Posts, Lodge Members)
Overall, I consider this a great month and I’d rate it about 8-9/10. I’m happy with my progress, and I know what I want to work on in the future.
Exciting Projects I’m Working On
Ok, now that we’ve reviewed my progress with my achievements, let’s me take you behind the scenes of what I’m actually working on in my business.
Project #1: The Lodge
The Lodge is my new membership area that I started developing in December.
It’s an evolution of my previous program that teaches entrepreneurs and copywriters how to write more in less time, Write More Every Day BETA.
I opened the program for early enrolment to WMED BETA students as well as a portion of my e-mail subscribers, and now have 15 founding members in the program.
Because I wanted to make this program the best program I ever created, I:
- Analyzed 500+ e-mails and 2,000+ writing sessions from my WMED BETA students
- Created a brand new membership area that I’m hosting on Mighty Networks
- Learned about how to set up an engaged online community from Diana Tower
All of this was A LOT more work than expected, and even with a ton of help from my assistant, it took us months to actually work through all the data and set everything up properly. I planned on opening The Lodge to founding members in the 2nd week of January, but due to some delays in development, I just opened it this week.
Still, I feel like that was the right thing to do. I would rather create a program that’s as good as it can possibly be and launch it when it’s ready, rather than cutting corners. Sure, it might be 10x the work to do that, but it definitely pays off to do it.
There were also some technical hiccups that we didn’t anticipate (for example, we had to delete a whole online course area we spent hours creating just to re-create it from scratch because we created it from the wrong account) that prolonged the launch.
So what did we actually do?
We created a brand new community that’s hosted on Mighty Networks that has an actual theme of The Lodge:
We created a dedicated learning area that makes it easy for our members to work through and discuss Write More Every Day content:
We created an inspiring and supportive welcome / onboarding experience:
…and a lot more (I’ll share more about The Lodge with you shortly!).
Now The Lodge has officially launched and the founding members area already in there connecting with fellow Lodgers, we’re kicking off the monthly Fireside Chats (our variation of coaching calls), I’m creating new dedicated content for The Lodge, and just making sure that we’re providing a great experience for all the Lodge members.
Now the plan is to open The Lodge to more members in February, which feels really exciting.
Project #2: The Top Performer Club
Beyond The Lodge, my other top priority for the year is to continue supporting my Top Performer Club students in scaling their online businesses.
The Top Performer Club is an intensive coaching program designed to help 5-6 figure entrepreneurs create explosive growth in their online businesses.
We meet with 2 groups of 6 students on a weekly basis for 90 minutes and look at different parts of their businesses that will help them scale up their businesses, from sales pages, sales funnels, content strategy, sales calendars, to product development and more.
The Top Performer Club represents the bulk of my business coaching (apart from 2 long-term 1on1 clients), and I feel like I have just the right amount of clients in the program that I can serve as best as possible.
The results from this program continue to surprise me, and the majority of the students in the program have either doubled their online businesses or scaled them to over 6 figures since working with me, which feels extremely gratifying. I also love that we have two groups of people that are very connected, intimate, and just fun to work with.
While I don’t have any new spots open for The Top Performer Club as both of the groups are currently full, I might have a handful of spots available in February or March – if you’re interested in joining the program, you can apply to it here .
Project #3: Work Less, Earn More BETA
After seeing how successful Write More Every Day BETA was, I realized that a lot of the concepts we taught in the program could be applied to general productivity when running an online business, and not just writing.
That’s why I created another BETA program last year called Work Less, Earn More BETA, which we just wrapped up a few weeks ago.
Here’s how I feel the program went.
The first thing I noticed was that there was less demand compared to WMED. We had 12 students in the program (down from 18 in WMED), which was still enough to run a solid BETA program, but perhaps not as exciting.
During the enrolment, I also had a feeling that a lot of people who could clearly benefit from the program didn’t join the program because it was too long / stretched out.
The engagement and connection in the program felt weaker than in WMED, potentially due to the smaller group size. It didn’t feel like the vibe was quite as strong, and the students didn’t seem to connect as much with each other organically as they did in WMED.
The show-up rate at the calls was slightly lower compared to WMED as well, and there was a noticeable dip in accountability updates and show-up rate after the New Year Break, which was fascinating (I expected the pace to pick up with the new-found motivation, but it didn’t seem to).
The results from the program seemed slightly less tangible than from WMED, as it’s easier to track writing progress than overall “productivity”. Still, the overall satisfaction from the program was a solid 4/5, and the students that diligently put in the work from the program accomplished a lot more than they did in the past over the 2 months we worked together.
Overall, the program felt good, but not great. It definitely didn’t feel as euphoric as WMED.
I haven’t decided what exactly the next evolution of this program will be and if it’s worth building out a full version of the program yet. Right now, I’m thinking that the best thing will be to add some of the lessons from the program to The Lodge, to add another layer of support to The Lodge members.
I feel like that option would be better than creating an all-out productivity course as there seems to be less demand, less follow-through, it doesn’t feel as unique as The Lodge and I’m just not as excited about further evolving this program.
I might also repurpose some elements of the program that I’ve found to work really well (like The Lean Schedule ) as blog content, or create a spin-off BETA course or workshop that focuses on a specific part of the program.
For example, a couple ideas that come to mind that might be interesting to explore are:
- An intensive 1-day or half-day workshop where we create a Lean Schedule together, or a condensed version of WLEM with the most powerful lessons from the course
- A short, intensive Mental Strength course (this was one of the best-rated modules from the course)
- A course or a workshop related to getting in the zone / finding your zone of genius
I won’t explore any of these ideas immediately as I’ll be focusing on The Lodge and Top Performer Club development, but it might be interesting to dig deeper into some of these ideas in March or April.
What worked extremely well in January?
Now, let’s dig deeper into why I feel like January was a great month for me, and what I feel like the factors were that contributed to my success. I also want to share with you a few concepts / strategies that I feel like will make a difference in your business and life.
The Lean Schedule
In January, a lot of my days consisted of touring different coffee shops around Ljubljana, getting some writing in, and enjoying great coffee. Most of the time, work didn’t really feel like work.
I was able to do all of that because I created a Lean Schedule for myself where I only do meetings and coaching calls on Wednesdays and Thursdays:
So even though I mostly worked for 2-4 hours a day , I was able to make the most out of those few hours and have plenty of guilt-free time off to recharge and spend time with people I love.
This was a stark contrast to a year ago where I had coaching calls every day of the week, worked from my apartment every day, and felt like a slave to my schedule.
Changing my Thinking
Last autumn, I started working with a thinking coach.
She helps me change my conscious and subconscious thinking patterns that lead me to act in the way I don’t want to act based on the theory from the book Why We Think The Way We Do And How To Change It.
For example, she helped me get over my fear of publishing , which helped me publish more than I ever did over the past month.
We also work on other areas of my life, from managing and expressing my emotions better, becoming more vulnerable, and changing bad habits I’m not happy about.
Working with a thinking coach has been one of the best investments I’ve ever made in myself, and it helps me sit down once a week, collect and organize my thoughts, and do better next week.
It serves as a great complement to my 2-minute weekly review and helps me stay on track with my achievements and correct course as needed.
It’s a slow process (it often takes about 4-6 weeks to reach a big breakthrough), but over time the breakthroughs add up and I feel like I’m way happier than I was a few months ago thanks to the coaching I’m doing with her.
Removing Unnecessary Stress
Stress doesn’t exist anywhere else outside of our heads.
We make it up.
We feel like “there’s so much pressure on us”, “we’re stressed out” and like “we’re overwhelmed”. Nobody else feels it for us, it’s just all in our heads.
Sometimes, stress can be a very positive thing as it helps us work harder. Other times, it burns us out unnecessarily and takes our energy away from things that need it most.
I remember having a conversation about this with my thinking coach.
“I think you’re so tired and drained all the time because of all the stress you create for yourself. You’re constantly thinking “I shouldn’t do this”, “I shouldn’t do that”, and that stresses you out and drains you”.
I knew she was right, and as I overcame my fear of publishing , I was able to SEE how much more energized I was as soon as I let go of the pressure and stress I created for myself.
I loved the new-found feeling of freedom and effortlessness in my work.
That’s when I started being more mindful of where else in my life I created unnecessary stress, and slowly started letting go of it.
For example, I stressed out way too much about:
- not following through with my diet
- not waking up at 5am
- not reading as much as I wanted to
Which in turn drained my energy and made it even harder for me to stick with a diet or read more!
Now, I’m a lot more aware of when I’m stressing myself out for no reason, and let go of some of the pressure I created for myself.
For example, you’ll see how I addressed my diet and reading in my monthly review (above).
I’m not beating myself up for not reading as much or not sticking with a diet. Instead, I’m reprioritizing, focusing on creating new systems, and also giving myself the permission to say “it just isn’t a priority for me to lose weight right now, and that’s totally fine”.
Creating a Community
For a long time, I wanted to build my own community of like-minded entrepreneurs.
I did small things to make that happen, like building strong relationships with everyone who joined my coaching programs and online courses and treating them as friends.
I also hosted meet-ups every time I traveled to NYC where I grabbed a few drinks with my readers.
But what I missed is having a community of “my people” that was always there, not just when I traveled to the US or created a new cohort for an online course.
That’s where I asked my friend Diana Tower for help (the one in the middle!).
I joined Diana’s Community Catalyst, an online program that helps entrepreneurs with memberships create thriving online communities.
I knew I wanted to build a strong community in The Lodge, but just had no idea how to go about it.
Luckily, Diana was there to help.
She helped me through every step of the way, from finding a name for The Lodge, creating an incredible vibe in the community, onboarding new students, keeping them engaged, and more.
I learned so much about creating a thriving online community and I feel like I understand community WAY better now, and I’m excited to continue working with her for the next 6 months.
I’m also excited to host a LIVE retreat for The Lodge sometime this year with her help – something that I’ve always wanted to do, but never really knew how to get started with.
What can I do better in the future?
While January was a great month for me, there are parts of my life where I know I want to do better at.
Changing my Relationship With Food
There’s only one reason why I don’t have a six pack right now and I’m not as lean as I want to be.
In the evening, when I’m tired from working and a long workout, I hang out with my friends and eat way too much candy, potato chips and other junk food.
Outside of that, my diet is on-point, but in the evening, my willpower often just evaporates, I give into the temptations and wake up the next day feeling guilty about it.
I know that right now, the “issue” isn’t really in systems (as I know I could just eat protein bars or healthier snacks), it’s in my mindset.
Especially when I hang out with my friends, I know I have a tendency of binge-eating that gets out of hand and sabotages all the progress I make with my diet throughout the week.
Now as I mentioned before, I decided to go off a diet until April to decrease the unnecessary stress and just enjoy life for a while.
But while I’m doing that, I’m also excited to understand the psychology of eating better.
For example, right now I’m reading the Mindless Eating book which talks about how our environment influences what (and how much) we eat, so I’ll develop more awareness around my eating habits and be able to control them more intuitively and effortlessly.
I’ll also work through my binge-eating habits with my thinking coach in the near future as I want to find the invisible thinking patterns that drive this habit.
Reading is definitely something I want to get better at over the next few months.
To do that, I’ll create 3 new systems that should help me read more:
Reading in swarms
I got the idea for reading in swarms from my friend Kate Schutt – the basic idea is to find a topic that you’re really excited about, then read all the books about it.
I used to do that in the past, but was never really that intentional about it, so in the future I’ll work on improving that.
I also noticed that I had books on my reading list that I “should” read, rather than books that I was excited to read, so I’ll ask myself “what would be exciting to read today?” more often to make reading more fun and exciting for me.
Whenever I’m not doing enough of something, a solution that tends to work 99% of the time is creating a spreadsheet for it.
That’s why I took 3 minutes to create a super simple reading tracker where I track my reading progress with the books I’m currently reading:
I’ve used a similar tracker in the past and it worked well for me because it gamified reading and made it more fun, so I’m pretty confident it will work again.
I know that I get most of my reading done when I go to a spa, leave my phone in the locker and just read on my Kindle for a few hours.
I’ll be more intentional about doing that over the next few months, especially as I’ll have some more intense workouts as my powerlifting competition comes closer and I’ll be launching The Lodge.
I’ll need the time to recover and mentally disconnect from everything, and reading in a spa will be a great way to do that.
More Homerun Content
While I published a lot of new content in January, I feel like a lot of them (like my 5 ways to write while traveling ) were just quick and easy posts that I felt like writing.
These posts were great for building some momentum in my writing, and I’ll continue to let myself share the ideas I really want to share.
However, I’ll also start publishing some meatier content that takes longer to create (like super detailed, deep and thorough e-books, blog posts and Ultimate Guides), but also reaches and helps more people.
These pieces are harder to write as they take longer to create and there are more opportunities to lose momentum along the way, but can also be more exciting as you’re really creating something amazing that’s never been created before.
Over the next few months, I’ll focus on creating at least one “Homerun” piece of content every month, on top of what I’m already writing.
What’s next? My plans for February
January was a great month, and I’m excited to make February even better.
Here’s what I’ll be working on in February:
The Lodge Official Launch
Now that The Lodge is officially live and our community is already buzzing with like-minded entrepreneurs nerding out on writing, I’m going to open the doors to The Lodge to all of my readers in February.
I’ll do that with a 2-3 week launch packed with valuable content, which I know it will be so much fun to write because of all the amazing results that my Write More Every Day students had. It might just be one of the easiest and most fun launches to put together.
I’m excited to continue developing The Lodge and adding more amazing content to it, as well as to continue building an engaged and thriving community.
I’m also really excited about working with more kick-ass entrepreneurs within The Lodge as I feel like I will finally create an amazing community I’ve always dreamed of creating.
A LOT More Free Content!
I’ll continue to follow my theme for the year and focus on publishing more free content than I’ve ever created before.
I’m excited to write more about writing, productivity, and other things that help me run and grow a successful online business.
There will be short content. There will be long content. There will be e-books, guides, checklists and spreadsheets.
I want my readers to feel like there’s Christmas every week, and writing is a great way to do that.
This year, I’ve been on 3 ski trips in the Austrian Alps already, as skiing is one of my favorite ways to truly disconnect from the world:
I always loved skiing with my family as a kid, and dreamed about going to a charming ski resort in a rustic village, skiing all day long and having mulled wine by the fireplace in the evening.
This year, I decided to make skiing a priority, so I’m using all the spare time I have to relax and recover.
In mid February, I’m going a 5-day ski trip to Hintertux (thanks Lean Schedule! ), the place where Ed Sheeran recorded his “Perfect” video:
In short, January was amazing.
February will be even better.
This year, I’m producing more than I ever produced, I removed a lot of the unnecessary stress from my life, and am happier than I’ve been in a while.
Now it’s time for me to keep the momentum going, get back into the reading habit, and slowly nail my diet – and February will be amazing.
It’s not too late to catch up and make 2019 amazing!
I attribute a lot of my January success to 3 things:
Even though we’re already in February, you too can start using my 2-minute weekly review system, keep all of your 2019 goals and achievements in one place, and see exactly where you’re doing well and where you could do better.
To do that, simply enter your name and e-mail in the box below, and I’ll send you your own version of the Lean Review System, plus instructions on how to set it up and use it in under 20 minutes.
What about you? How is 2019 treating you so far? What’s going well, and what do you want to do better next month?
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