2017 Year-End Review

Year 2017 is about to end. This is the perfect time to look back about the past year and share with you the lessons I learned.

This year marked my 6th year being a full-time entrepreneur. It has been a year full of challenges and blessings. They say, most businesses fail within the first 5 years of existence. It’s an amazing milestone to be able to grow the business up to this point. Yes there are challenges, but we have reason to be hopeful and look ahead in confidence this year 2018.

The highlights.

One of our biggest milestones in the business this year is that we were able to buy our BRAND NEW BLACK FORD MUSTANG! Yehey! This is our 3rd car in the past 6 years. For me, it’s not just a car, but the realization that anything you can dream, you can achieve. Always remember, you were meant not just to make a living, but to live life to its fullest.

Our car is nicknamed, “Knight Rider”, based from the TV show of the same name. I realized recently that I must be getting older. Some of our younger teammates ask me who is knight rider. I realized, they were not born yet when the 80’s tv show was shown. They often try to guess the name as Dark Knight, from the Batman movie. It makes me think perhaps I should change it to that instead. 🙂

On a personal level, there were some other exciting firsts too. This year we had our first out of town family trip via airplane Bacolod with my 2 boys. They were so excited riding in the airplane for the first time.

There were also a lot of other wins this year, including being awarded as multi-million peso achiever for the 3rd consecutive year. I’ve had the opportunity to visit and train for the first time in Iloilo and Antique about building a sustainable business.

There were also invitations to talk about financial literacy in Batangas, Marilao and at the Asian Institute of Management in Makati. It was year of opportunities to share how to handle money to hundreds of aspiring entrepreneurs.

On a personal level, my wife and I also celebrated our 10th year together this year. It’s been an up and down journey through all those years but I am happy we were able to overcome the challenges and stay stronger together.

There’s been a lot of blessings this year that’s for sure.

The challenges.

We had a lot of challenges this year both personal and business. Here are some of the most important ones.

On the business side, we had leadership challenges. We had one of the most challenging year so far in terms of leading a team. Relationships with key leaders went through rocky times. I wasn’t sure how to navigate the challenges at first. It took a lot of mental and emotional toughness to go through all of them at the same time. It’s not easy always to see the end of the tunnel when you are currently in the midst of going through it. You just hold on to the hope that eventually, things will get better. And it did for me. I have had to swallow my pride and admit my mistakes not only to myself but also to the people I have failed.

The hardest part of being a leader is to be constantly worrying about the welfare of the people you lead. When you see them go through challenges both financially and personally, you cannot help but feel their pain as well. You try to think of ways to help. But in the end, it’s their battle to go through. You can only be there when they need someone to talk to. But you cannot go through it on their behalf. Perhaps they need to go through it to learn some lessons that would help them grow and become stronger individuals.

It’s like the story of a boy watching a butterfly go out of its cocoon. Feeling the pain of the butterfly, the young boy tried to help it by breaking the cocoon for the butterfly. In the end, the muscles that needed to develop for the butterfly by pushing the cocoon out of the way did not mature enough. It grew weak and could not fly. That I think is the hardest part, to watch but not able do anything other than cheer. But in the end, it’s not about you. It’s about the growth of the person you want to help.

On a personal level, my health has been going through some challenges as well. My weight went up because of all the stress I was going through. I had some nights where I could not sleep very well. That’s why this new year, this is going to be my primary focus to improve.

The lessons.

One thing I realized is that people change. Relationships change. You need to continually give effort and invest time, money, attention and care in any kind of relationship. Nurture it. Let it grow with care. Never take people for granted.

You have to face whatever challenges you go through with strong faith. Always remember, that it will get better. It gets better faster if you are willing to admit your mistakes, say sorry. Swallow your pride. Make up for it. Make an effort to improve. The sooner, the better.

You are responsible for all the results (or lack thereof) of your business and personal life.

I realized that I was afraid to face the challenges head on. I let it slide for a long time when I could have addressed it sooner than later. In the end, I think the outcome could have been better than expected.

There’s fear. There’s doubt. Your lack of confidence is brought to the surface as well. You question yourself if you can still go back on track. It is a hard and a demanding process. It cannot be rushed.

In the end I think, it worked out ok. That’s the most important part of all. Let go of the past, so you can boldly face the new.

Though it all, I am thankful for 2017 for it taught me a lot of things. By going through it, it gives me confidence that next year is going to be a lot better.

Thank you for being a part of my year as a reader of my blog. I appreciate it. I hope the things you read here helps you in your life as well. I wish for you a richer and more prosperous 2018! 🙂