How do you feel about 2018? (Nine reasons I’m feeling pretty good)

Tony Novak demonstrating how to cook soft shell crabs.
My soft shell crab cooking demonstration in July that drew a citation from the local health department.

One of the tax writers I like to follow said today that she is “super worried about 2018”. I asked her what are her largest worries. While waiting for the response I thought about the same question and decide that I feel a lot better about 2018 than I did about 2017 at this time a year ago.

I feel good about many things today:

  1. I’ve proved to myself this year that I can exponentially increase the amount of work accomplished using better work tools while improving my health and reading time.
  2. We see more powerful stabilizing forces in federal government to offset Trump. I no longer worry that the country could collapse in civil war (as I did a year ago). I am focused on the concept that #decencywins.
  3. The elected officials and state/county officers who support me in the stabilization and revitalization of the local aquaculture industry are rising in power.
  4. My focused business marketing to attorneys just feels right. (I pointed out to a marketing expert yesterday that your ‘marketing target’ is not necessarily the same as your ‘target market’). I feel fully expressed and benefit from this added level of personal integrity. Playing small and dumb as to not offend red mindsets wasn’t working for me.
  5. We have a carefully considered new business model and a new manager for the marina. The changes are dramatic but strategically sound.
  6. The tax scam law wasn’t as (immediately) bad as I feared, It will cost me more but I’ll survive. There is still a realistic hope of reversing the widening trend in the wealth gap within my lifetime.
  7. The tax scam law is potentially good for my accounting and benefits consulting business. My specific areas of professional expertise are in fashion again.
  8. A lot of things went wrong in 2017, but these are now in the past. The combination of stressors was so bad for me financially that I just don’t have much downside any more. Property values at the bayshore have dropped as much as 95% since their high in 2006, effectively wiping out my entire net worth. But the good new is that property values are on the rebound once again. Two friends and financial partners ran into personal problems and abandoned me. One broke a significant business contract. Recreational marina revenues dropped for the 10th consecutive year and the out-of=pocket costs were more than I could handle from other sources.  My NJ bayshore neighbors are gone; relocated safely inland. I’ve been open and honest that bankruptcy reorganization may be the best solution to address the massive bayshore costs that the State of New Jersey would like me to bear as their scapegoat for problems they allowed long to accrue before I was at the helm.  My strategy of saying to antagonists “If you don’t like what we are doing here to solve your problems, then come on down and I’ll turn over the property deeds. Then tomorrow it will be your problem. Meanwhile we’ll be here every day at dawn trying to make this a better place to live and work” seems to actually be effective. Starting at the bottom, it can only get better from here.
  9. My social networks and personal relationships are growing stronger. The biggest ‘hit’ I took in my seven years of recovery from disability was loss of relationships. These relationships are slowly growing stronger as my relationship skills (even things as simple as short-term memory) are growing noticeably sharper.

Certainly we have many challenges ahead. In fact I expect that 2018 will be the most challenging, most stressful, most demanding year of my life. But I welcome the challenge nonetheless. The time to make a difference is now!

Best wishes for a great 2018.


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