I’m laying on my bed waiting to drive to a family Christmas party. It just hit me – another year is in the books. As the festivities and drinking ramp up, it’s time to reflect once again – time to compare my current self to who I was a mere 365 days ago.

The average man simply uses this time to relax, but the superior man does not. He consciously reminisces on the time that’s past, and re-focuses his aim for the upcoming year. Rather than allowing another year to be archived without a second thought, he provides context and significance to time that otherwise might have been forgotten. Yes, he should be vigilant and self-aware throughout the year, but it’s all too easy to get caught up in smaller projects and minutiae. Now it’s time to review the big picture.

I offer a series of questions below, and sample answers from my life, to assist you in your personal reflection and analysis.

What areas did you make significant progress in?

From articles for my own blog and pieces for Return of Kings to publishing two books and working on another – my ability to write and communicate my thoughts and experiences through written word has come a long way. I’ve found that cutting past the bullshit and actually writing is the only way to improve. At times I wrote a lot and often. At other times I went months without writing so much as a sentence. But after all is said and done, I believe this is the area I made the most progress in.

What areas did you stagnate in?

While I continued to workout and train hard throughout the year, I faced a number of obstacles that stunted the progress of my physique. Diminishing marginal returns from years of lifting, stomach problems that left me with a less-than-optimal diet, and other projects competing for my time combined to slow my gains. I put on about five pounds of muscle over the first eight months, cut five of fat over the past four, and got slightly stronger in the process. Compared to the previous year, these are only small improvements.

What habits will you integrate?

Recent experimentation has revealed several dietary considerations I must take into account to maintain a healthy, gas/bloating-free stomach. Primarily I found that intermittent fasting allows me to avoid a majority of the digestive discomforts I’ve dealt with recently. I will only eat from noon until eight going forward.

What activities can I remove from my life?

Last year I cut out most of the bullshit, from video games to excessive TV. The one thing that continues to suck my time on a daily basis is mindless internet browsing. I’d say it steals 45 minutes a day from my life. Facebook, and the addicting newsfeed scroll is the primary offender. Facebook is a weekly activity going forward.

What is your main mission for the year to come?

I’ve nearly completed writing a new book on being alpha and the rules I followed to transform my life over the past few years. Editing, publishing, and marketing this book is my main mission – at least for the beginning of the year. The book’s success will rely primarily on my ability to market and promote it, so this is where I’ll focus the majority of my energy.

What about you?

Take a few minutes – or an hour, even. Answer the questions above. Give purpose and direction to your life. Take aim and steady your crosshairs for the year to come.

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