My 2018 Year In Review

Was talking with a friend last night regarding our main takeaways of 2018. Just talking about it made me think about writing it down. Another friend of mine has also inspired me by the way he does his

I always find writing helps me become more self aware as it forces me to think things through on a deeper level. As cliche as NYE resolutions are, it’s a good time to think about how I’ve been doing the current year (reflection), where I want to be (vision), and the solutions to any roadblocks (problem/solution plan). 

2018 Year In Review

Work: 9/10

Super proud of how my career is turning out. I’m surrounded by people way smarter than me who are also fun to work with. The work is challenging and I’m constantly learning.

  • Main Company ( Really proud on this. We did exactly what we set out to do, made key hires, and our business metrics have been very positive. My growth this year came through creating new specialized teams (creative & testing & retention teams), plus getting exposure to interesting new responsibilities. More importantly, I found a formal mentor who has been extremely valuable helping us with “experience shortcuts” from just asking the right questions.
  • Hobby Company ( Wasn’t perfect but learned a lot on how I tend to rush my reply on important conversations, rather than listening & being empathetic. Missed our Q4-2018 launch timing but everything is in place for a strong 2019 public launch. Overall, I’m really happy with the progress we’ve made and the product is looking amazing.
  • Other/Consulting: Consulting wasn’t planned but a few opportunities arose where it made sense to accept. Main learning was how consulting could be an income source during my mini-retirements or when I want to spend more time with family. Other than that, did my first conference speaking gig, got interviewed on Shopify’s podcast, and also got invited to speak at Shopify.

Health: 5/10

Started really strong during the first half of 2018, but since coming back from a trip, I lost the healthy habits and wasn’t able to get back into it.

  • Workout: Consistently went 3-4 times per week up to summer. After July, I barely went except for the occasional lazy workout. Not happy about this and probably the one thing I will focus on in 2019 in this category.
  • Food: I didn’t cook once since summer. As bad as it sounds, I don’t feel too bad about it. Sure it could be improved but I’ve been choosing “healthier takeout” options. For sure an area I can improve on but workout takes priority, and there are easy solutions here.
  • Sleep: Pretty good! Been waking up naturally without an alarm and going to sleep at the right time. I’ve also reduced the amount of days I go drinking, but could still reduce the amount of drinks when I do go. I also have a bad habit watching youtube before going to sleep which could be replaced with casual reading instead.

Personal: 7/10

  • Hobbies: Made huge strides this year. In 2017, most of my hobbies (writing + side projects) were things I’d do independently, but I found a social hobby I really enjoy… Bachata! It’s a great skill to have, it’s fun, and most importantly, I’ve met some really cool new friends!
  • Friends: Super proud here, main growth here is understanding the importance of being the “hub” by organizing things. I’ve helped grow an e-commerce mindshare group along with Benji, and also creating mini-Bachata communities. These “communities” are super valuable, whether if it’s having a group of friends to go to bachata socials, or seeking strategic advice straight from the practitioners.
  • Family: I have a pretty good relationship with my family but don’t feel I really pushed myself as hard here. Could take more initiative to plan group activities to make the in-person time more valuable. Whether if it’s helping my mom cook, a construction project with my dad, or to help organize family trips.
  • Dating: Did quite a bit of dating this year but nothing serious. Getting a feeling of exhaustion. So main learning here is to focus more on quality. This means less focus on apps, and more on referrals from trusted friends + common interest activity groups.

2019 Plan

Obviously this is all subject to change, but I think it’s valuable again to put the first version down on paper.

Plan is to print it out, tape it on the mirror. Idea being the more I remind myself of it, the more likely it’ll become reality. And if plans change, I’ll just update the list.


Quite a few opportunities are propping up, but it’s a skill in itself to know how to spend my energy on the stuff that matters and the stuff that doesn’t. For that reason, will only list “two” items under the work category so at least it helps make my default answer a “no” (subject to case-by-case opportunities).

  • Majority of my time/focus should be on retention for Kettle & Fire. Delegate everything else.
  • $Xk revenue goal for 


  • 3 workouts a week + try at least 5 sessions with a personal trainer just to see what it’s like
  • Get better sleep by doing more casual reading before bed instead of being on my phone


  • Try & commit to at least 10 Brazilian jiu-jitsu classes
  • Try at least 3 therapy sessions just to see what it’s like
  • Organize a family trip
  • Organize at least 3 growth dinners in Toronto with Nadya
  • Spend a month away from Toronto, ideally on a trip that revolves around bachata, diving, or hiking
  • Put out the word to trusted friends that I’m looking for dating referrals 🙂

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