Monthly Archives: December 2013

2013 Year In Review

What would a blog be without a ‘year in review’ post? Or an ’11-reasons-why-2013-was-awesome-and 11.5 reasons-why-2014-should-be-too’ post? Well check it, I’m doing a hybrid of both.

In all seriousness, a big part of why I launched this blog is the fact I’m a big believer in intentionality. We must work, plan and evaluate in all areas of our lives. We can’t let life happen to us; we must happen to life. Otherwise we’ll all end up fat, unemployed and in our parents’ basement down by the river. Intentionality.

Down by the river

One tool I use for taking a look at all aspects – not just money or career – is the Life Wheel tool:

 Life Wheel

I’m a big believer in balance and think it’s tough to compartmentalize or be great in one area while neglecting others. Ignore one part long enough and it’ll feel like your life wheel has a flat tire.

So. Some of my personal highlights and scores from 2013:

  • Health 7.0 I managed to maintain decent shape and consistent workouts. Somewhere in between ‘college skinny’ and ‘middle aged dad fat.’ Perhaps something like CrossFit or a half marathon in the fall to squash complacency. IF I get on Instagram in 2014, I’ll be sure to provide daily updates of my #shirtless #self in the mirror….
  • Wealth 8.5 – I managed to give myself a solid raise, saved a decent amount, maxed out 401k and Roth IRA, didn’t take on any debt, stayed fairly true to my monthly budgets.
  • Family & Friends 6.5 – I tried to keep in touch with long distance friends. Somehow Charlotte, NY, Atlanta, Lexington, Denver and Florida stole all my friends from Columbus within 12 months. Literally every close friend moved. Enjoyed quality time with the rents and grandma, but need some face time with my brother this year.
  • Hobbies & Fun 7.0 – Love to travel and took a pretty amazing trip to Europe. Not as many concerts last year. Launched a blog, finally!
  • Relationships 8.5 – Invested in the relationship with the GF and we’re doing great as we approach two years together in 2014.
  • Career/Job 9.0 – I stepped into a leadership promotion, grew our organization, invested in professional development. We won some big awards as a company. I need to help more people hit their goals in 2014 and become more effective in my leadership. AND, launched my own business!
  • Personal Space 6.0 – Did some decent self reflection and personal growth that helped in the relationship arena. This needs to continue to sharpen if I’m to be effective in leadership and having the courage to run my own business.
  • Contribution/Spirituality 4.0 – I feel like I contribute to people’s lives at work and with friends, but this is definitely the weak link in 2013. This year I’ve joined some volunteer organizations with groups like Nationwide Children’s Hospital. Need to get better at this one.

I’m excited for what the future holds next year. And I know I need to continue to get better about being intentional and managing my time to keep improving in all these areas. I also have plans for the blog here – more in depth posts, outside interviews, and regular updates about the side project I’ve launched.




What are your thoughts on 2013 or what you plan to do in 2014? What areas of your Life Wheel could use the most improvement? Share or comment below. Cheers!

Control the Controllables

I’m not on Pinterest. Yet. But I wonder if they have a board to inspire us when ‘it all hits the fan.’

Fan Cartoon

A few Sundays ago I was flying for work from Columbus to LA. I had a team dinner planned and was ready to make the most out of the last trip out west for 2013. Instead, I got stuck in Chicago for 7 hours. I landed at what my body thought was 3:30am, 12:30am at LAX. Four hours later, my alarm went off for an east coast conference call. I grabbed my phone to turn off the alarm and saw 21 emails – one of which was a huge sale falling through and a great team member putting in his resignation. Happy Monday!


What a way to start the week. Sometimes motivational quotes and coffee only go so far. So what do you do when it all hits the fan? The only thing you can do: Control the controllables. Could I control the weather in Chicago? Nope. At this point, could I control losing a team member? That ship had sailed. Could I control how tired my body was staring down an 18 hour day? Not at all.

In the moment before I started my week in LA, I could focus on all the crap and how far the fan had flung it. Or I could remind myself of a lesson I had learned at 19 with Southwestern, and focus on controlling the things I actually had control over – my attitude, the hours I worked and my efforts. “Control the controllables, Patty” I mumbled to myself as I stumbled through getting ready.

We all have humbling days (or months) where everything goes wrong. Upset clients, bombed exams, car issues, bad hair days, etc. Unless you’re Ron Burgundy – he probably has other issues, but bad hair days isn’t one of them.

Sphere 2

When it all seems to be going south, instead of focusing on everything negative outside your power, choose to focus on the controllables. Most times it’s simply your attitude, your hours and your effort. And it typically turns things around faster than they fell apart.




Thoughts? What do you do when everything goes wrong at work or at home? Please share or comment below. And tune in next time when I discuss making Kool-Aid.