Reflections on 2017, Plans for 2018

Reflections on 2017, Plans for 2018

Exactly a year ago, CNN wrote the (in)famous “Oprah for Millennials” profile on yours truly. Those couple days were a whirlwind of activity and emotions, ranging from the “sh!t just got real” to the ego-gratifying surge in new subscribers to the responsibility that came with this newfound exposure.

And though 2017 did not have any viral hits, I wanted to take a few moments to reflect on accomplishments, places we can improve, and the tremendous gratitude I feel for this community.

First off, thank you all so much. In this age of information overload, I’m well aware of the cognitive overload that can come with a weekly e-mail containing hours of potential reading/listening. Thank you for the feedback, the encouragement, and support (both financial and emotional).

I’m excited to continue to grow the community, stories, and ideas in 2018. RadReads has always been an evolving creature (is it a business? a hobby? a blog? an email?) but it’s found its stride in the ideas of emotional self-regulation, honing our crafts and careers, and a broader acknowledgement that, irrespective of our age, we’re all works in progress.

There are a few big holes I’d like to address in 2018. First, I’d like to specifically/tangibly honor our Patrons across the various tiers. Your support of the community should not be a one-way street. Next, I’d like to bolster the community’s interaction (both digitally and IRL), as many of the side discussions still route through me. And finally, there’s #RadLove, the belief that each of us has untapped generosity that’s waiting to be unleashed.

Going into 2018 I’m also looking to push my writing to a higher level. I want to avoid the (seductive) trap of exclusively writing in the “productivity porn” genre and want to grapple with more complex topics including mortality, time, anxiety, the dialectic, privilege. (But do not despair, it would be impossible for me to not write an occasional story on Omnifocus or some new efficiency hack.)

Other initiatives: developing RadJobs with @patricksouth, aggregating all the content under radreads.co, expanding into a new visual medium (video and/or illustration), and possibly adding specific “verticals” (personal finance, toxic masculinity, unbundled careers). One thing’s for damn sure: I’m going to ship and experiment A LOT. We’re always looking for more people to help/grow any of these initiatives. Send us an email if you’d like to join the #RadSquad.

And now a few Thank Yous:

Thank you to every single one of our Patrons, both current and past. The (literal financial) support has given me the resources, momentum, and confidence to keep expanding. A few Patrons (I’m purposefully anonymizing their names) have gone above and beyond financially: Tim R, Oliver H, Drew M, Sunil A, Min H — thank you. (And a quick plug — support us here 😉.)

Thank you to those who have contributed time to specific projects, in the form of writing, WordPress, and organizing events: Patrick South, Tom Wang, Alex Hardy, Joshua Lee, Jen Abel and Khuyen Bui.

A huge thank you to my colleagues at Quartz, particularly Kevin Delaney, Jay Lauf, and Lauren Brown for believing in me and giving me the opportunity to develop as a writer. And to my Quartz At Work co-editors, Heather Landy and Sarah Kessler, and our awesome squad of reporters.

I’m particularly proud of the Rad Awakenings podcast — a huge thank you to my audio engineer Mathew Passy and all of our guests, particularly the initial ones who were volunteering their time on a completely untested and raw product.

And most importantly, my beautiful and amazing wife Lisa Manley. Spouses are the unsung heroes of entrepreneurship, particularly when you consider they did not explicitly sign up for the collateral damage that comes with the lifestyle. Lisa, I could not do this without your support and patience and I love you so much. ❤️

Thank you all for making 2017 such a special year. Here’s to 2018 and beyond. 🤘💚🚀

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