Retro Boomin’: Revisiting My Path to Self-Improvement in 2017
This time a year ago I upped the ante for myself and announced to the world I was going to do everything possible to level up all aspects of my life.
I was going to get fitter than Fit Finlay.
I was going to get my mind right.
I was going to pick up all the skills that pay the bills.
You know what? Despite a few bumps in the road, I think I made major progress towards the goals I set for myself 12 months ago. Let’s run the year back and see what I’m talking about.
Eat Your Heart out, Jonah Hill
It took me a minute to finally get down to business, but I lost 30 pounds over approximately a three-month span in the summer. Ironically, the thing that spurred on my fat shredding kick was all the grindin’ I was bragging about in April.
My body was breaking down and that 24/7 lifestyle was not sustainable. That’s when I cut the Red Bull, changed my diet and actually forced myself to sleep.
I still pull the all-nighters, but I try not to do them back-to-back. I’ve traded in Red Bulls for Bai energy drinks. I calorie count five days a week and limit myself to one “fat” meal on my cheat days.
Amazingly, this is the third time I’ve shed at least 30 pounds, with the biggest loss being fiddy el beeeeez. What’s my secret? Eat less, move more and drink so much water you take 57 bathroom breaks a day. It’s really that simple.
The Secret Sauce
There are the skills you can clearly display and there are skills that people can’t quite put their finger on, but they know you possess them.
That’s where analyzing the underlying framework of things comes in. For me, “things” centered around what makes good content. I’ve learned to look beyond the surface when figuring out why certain content and creators are more successful than others – and I owe that all to reading ALL THE THINGS.
I’ve read more this year than than all the other years in my life combined. That may be a bit of an exaggeration, but when you combine the number of books I read with how actively I’m consuming content and that’s a recipe for getting my mind right in a hurry.
Not only am I recognizing the common threads between quality content, but the content itself is enlightening me.
Up until this summer, I was focused on one thing in my career: Vertical growth.
That seems like a good thing, until you realize that one-track mind can have you focusing on the wrong things. Don’t get me wrong, that mindset has served me well throughout my career. However, what was lost upon me was that I wasn’t always passionate about the opportunities I “had” to pursue.
That all came to a boiling point this summer when my company went through a major restructure. Because of the changes, my growth path was stunted, at least by traditional thinking. I didn’t take the restructure well, I’m not going to lie about that, but now I’m thankful it happened because it forced me to really assess what I’m passionate about and where I want to be long-term.
I’ve been a director before, so I know the prestige that the position brings to the table. I also know all about stresses that come with a position like that and how much that role takes away from my true passion: Creating dope content.
Because of this realization, I feel more fulfilled with my career than ever before and I’m as sure as I’ve ever been in terms of where I need to level up my skills. Why be a John Skipper when I really want to be a Shea Serrano?
Now that I know how I should spend my time and I’m as healthy as I’ve ever been, I no longer stress about spending time with the fam. I don’t feel like I’m wasting valuable grind time anymore, and that’s a huge weight off my shoulders.
What mountains am I looking to climb next year? I started writing a book and I’m looking to step up my video editing and animation game, for starters. Stay tuned for updates on all that.