My 2012 Annual Review

My 2012 Annual Review

Written by Emilie

Topics: Goals

I’m sitting in my old idea workshop (read: bedroom) in Montreal, between prepping the stuffing and a Skype call with my girlfriend. I slipped away from the holiday madness to take a moment and write to you.

The past year has been incredible– the best year of my life (though they just keep getting better). I’ve been reflecting a lot since Jason departed and left me in a bit of a post-achievement slump. Always happens after a big project ends, I was expecting it. But with the end of the year approaching, I turned to reflecting and spent a few weeks thinking over my intentions for the new year.

I like Chris G.’s end/beginning of year rituals and thought I would participate again this year. For the annual review, you simply ask yourself two questions:

1. What went well this year?
2. What did not go well this year?

Lets do it.

What Went Well in 2012

2012 started off with this wacky idea I had to start a membership site for serious multipotentialites. Articles like this made me feel like it was too soon, like the community at Puttylike wasn’t big enough for a membership site to work. But I had this feeling deep down that I could pull it off. That I may not have had thousands of subscribers at that point, but that the multipotentialites in our community are so passionate and engaged, that they would be all for it.

Luckily, I trusted my gut and moved ahead on the project despite my fear of failing.

I spent the first few months running free huddles and populating the Puttytribe with small groups, until the public launch in mid-April. I learned how to be a leader through running the huddles, which later helped me with my speaking goal. I hired my first team-member, Jon (our Director of Tribe Happiness), and got together a team of volunteer Ambassadors, who continue to impress me with their thoughtful replies and support to their fellow puttypeeps.

We’ve opened the doors 5 times since April, and the community has grown to nearly 200 multipotentialites. There have been member-initiated huddles, workshops on everything from nutrition to investing to typography, 24-hour Puttython events, businesses launched, and major breakthroughs. Our retention rate from month-to-month hovers around 85-90%, which truly lights me up inside because it means that people are really benefitting from the community. That is all I want. To create neat projects that allow me to express my many sides and also help multipotentialites thrive in their lives.

In May, I got the schnauzer puppy I had been dreaming about for years. My life was finally at a place where it could accommodate a dog. I moved into a beautiful apartment in Northeast Portland. No more roommates!

In August, I went to music camp with my mom, which sparked a renewed interest in musical theater, violin and performing.

Probably my biggest accomplishment in terms of work stuff, was putting on my first live seminar in Portland, on October 16. I spent about a month preparing for this, and we had a sold out room. But I DID IT! I set a date, booked a room, wrote a speech, and plastered the city with flyers. Got a bit of help from Mike with the flying, homemade silly putty, and set up. Meanwhile Jon, went all out with the online PR (this is why I only work with multipotentialites. That is not the job I initially hired him for).

I have since been contacted by two high schools in Portland, and will be speaking to their students in the new year. My first presentation is to an entire high school in mid-January.

Health-wise, I’ve made real strides this year. After a three year battle with health challenges, I was finally able to get my health in check, mostly through a Paleo diet, lots of bone broth and later increasing carb intake from <50 grams per day to +100 grams, primarily in the form of sweet potatoes. Also, cutting out every. single. possible source of gluten from my diet. I got really strict after discovering I was celiac (likely the underlying cause of my health woes). This involved swapping shampoo brands, because yes, that shit can seep in through your scalp.

In November, I hosted a friend and apprentice and got to experience an intense co-working set up, plus help someone else go from finished book, to finished and LAUNCHED book. It was an incredible experience.

It’s also worth mentioning that this year I got into the best relationship I’ve ever been in, which feels like a massive accomplishment for me. :)

I also made a lot of new friends in Portland, and began to feel that sense of community I was longing for.

What Did Not Go Well in 2012

Well, I failed at a bunch of book-writing attempts.

NaNoWriMo was a fail. The book on confidence stopped in part two. The book on multipotentiality also stopped mid-way through.

Now, I don’t consider any of these projects to be dead. They all just got usurped by other tidal waves. The confidence book was overtaken by the Puttytribe, the multipotentiality book by the seminar, and the novel was overtaken by my month with Jason.

I think writing in general has become less exciting to me as a medium. I’ve become more interested in trying out new formats, and as a result, writing tended to take the back burner when something bigger came along.

It would be easy for me to be hard on myself about this (I have in the past). But I know that it’s just a part of my multipotentialite rhythm. Interests, media, projects, they come and go. When I feel that the time is here to finish some of these books, I will jump back in.

While I made serious progress with my health goals, my exercise goals were another matter entirely. I was not able to sustain a yoga practice, meditation, the gym, or body weight exercises (boring).

My 2013 goal setting (or anti-goal setting, we shall see) post is coming soon, but I can guarantee you that working out is going to be a big part of it. Going through health challenges for a few years can make you feel out of control, since things are happening TO you. It’s important for me to feel powerful again, physically. So that is going to be a major area of focus in the new year.

All in all, 2012 was an excellent year, I hit many of the goals from my 2012 New Years goal-setting post, and I can’t wait to see what 2013 has in store.

Your Turn

What went well for you this year? What did not go well this year?


  1. Joshua says:

    “It would be easy for me to be hard on myself about this (I have in the past). But I know that it’s just a part of my multipotentialite rhythm.”

    So great to hear this post, to hear what you’ve been through and especially that you allowed yourself to stop doing things / put things down or even give up on them. That’s huge. I did the same with NaNoWriMo. And I let myself off the hook about it, and that was a huge lesson.

    Though I am a bit late on going through the past year in my brain, to see what worked and what didn’t, I do know how the year 2012 will go down in my history:

    It’ll always be the year when I discovered that I could actually use all of the random grab basket of interests I have to my benefit, without feeling like the ‘Master of none’ part of that old adage is some kind of curse.

    And that was in huge part to you, Emilie. Thanks for creating this, so excited to see what happens in 2013!

    • Emilie says:

      Thank you Josh. You are a huge inspiration to me too. I’m really glad we’re friends and I’m looking forward to seeing what happens in 2013. I have a feeling it might be the Year of Collaboration. :)

  2. Milo says:

    Congratulations on a great year Emilie. One of the things I learnt this year was to be as compassionate with myself as I am with other people who need it. Let’s face it we all need to be treated with compassion by ourselves and others.

    I’ve never managed to complete NaNoWriMo and didn’t even try this year, but I did manage to write and publish 4 ebooks!

    Whilst this was my first year as a freelancer I can’t say I’ve made massive progress in terms of income/business, but my focus instead has been on recovery and health. Giving up drink for a year (I’m 3 months in) and taking up meditation are probably the best achievements of my year.

    Your progress with your speaking goal is massive. I’m starting to feel the draw to get back into some kind of live performance myself so this is a big inspiration to me, as is your attitude and approach in general!

    A very Happy New Year to you and all of your Puttytribe :)

    • Emilie says:

      Wow, 4 ebooks is huge! As is the meditation and health. And that is such a wonderful lesson you’ve learned.

      Thanks for everything Milo. I’m so glad we got to meet in 2012. Do you think you’ll make it back to Portland for WDS this year?

      Happy New Year!

      • Milo says:

        Well I wrote a micro-manifesto and 3 microguides for my Career Masterplan for Mad Geniuses series. I’ve got 3 more to write though so I’m behind already!

        I am definitely aiming to come back this year, I’ve got my ticket for the event, just need the plane ticket. I’d better start brushing up on my karaoke skills too ;)

  3. Jo says:

    Most of my goals for 2012 were to do with writing but, like you, I’ve realised that writing’s just not at the top of my pile of interests at the moment, and, thanks to Puttylike, I’m ok with that. I also failed at NaNo this year, but don’t mind. I’ve set goals for 2013 but I’m not going to force myself to stick with them if I’m only sticking with them because I set them (if that makes sense!).

    Thank you for changing the way I see these things, and for the part you’ve played in making my 2012 a year of progress and change. :-)

  4. sheila says:

    Congratulations on a productive year!

    Not sure if you’ve ever tried Pamela’s pancake mix, Tinkyada pasta and believe it or not Betty Crocker gluten free chocolate chip cookie mix and cake mixes are great. And If you’re ever in NYC babycakes bakery is amazing for gluten free baked goods. Also Trader Joes’s waffles are great. My daughter has been on a gluten free & egg free diet since she was 8 mos. so we’ve tried pretty much everything.

    My goal for 2013 is to finally make a calendar and note cards for my fishegg cartoons series and get my RF site moving along by doing guest posts on conscious awareness and creativity and get at least two workshops up and running.

    Here’s to a happy, healthy and productive New Year to all :)

  5. David Delp says:

    As a mulitpotentialite, I like to organize my anual assessments around the different roles I play and the questions I use are:

    What was I proud of?
    What was I embarrassed by?

    These focus more on the actions I took instead of what happened to me, as a Writer, as a Father, as a Divorcee, Homemaker, Artist, Businessman, Brother, Lover, Friend, Singer, etc.

    I write them on little slips of paper, usually in the company of friends doing the same.

    Then we burn them. That was last year. It’s done!

  6. Wins: Continued to grow in photography. I had several wedding bookings because I don’t believe in 5000 dollar wedding photos. I delivery quality & quantity.

    Made more friends & connections in the professional wrestling business which may benefit me in the future.

    Did my first high school senior photo shoot in which I went overboard. That was fun.

    Continued to focus in on aggressive aggregation of my social media yet try to make sure I am on as many platforms to be found as possible. Currently refining my YouTube direction.

    Fails: Still running behind on the financial end. I need a manager because I keep running myself into the red. That isn’t a good thing.

    Soft launch of a social media ad company. This is more like I’ve not had the time to put true value into it.

    Getting behind on media projects. I really need a change of pace. Five years of night shifts are starting to take a toll on what I really want to do. I need to look harder for the out or I’ve not been able to find one because I am over looking it.

  7. Mike says:

    Hey! I thought I heard my name. :)

    Emilie, as your friend and neighbor, it’s been awesome to be around for many of these highlights with you. (So much fun helping you prep for your seminar!) It’s totally awesome to see what you’ve done, and I’m excited to see what’s coming next.

    As for me, I accomplished a whole lot, went many places, and had lots of wonderful experiences, but the most important part of this year was finally grasping that I have a responsibility to work toward my own happiness and fulfillment. Not just for my sake, but also for everyone I know.


    • Emilie says:

      Mike, you have grown SO much in the short time that I’ve known you. You should be really really proud of yourself. Such internal growth this past year. I’m excited to see where you go in 2013! Lets hang out soon. xo.

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