What a year! 2021 felt to me like a rollercoaster ride. Tons of ups and downs, however ending on a high note. This post summarizes my last 12 months, what I learned along this journey, highlights, lowlights and what the future holds.

I had to actually write a pre-retro brainstorming post for myself just so I could remember all the defining moments of this year since there were so many. I found that to be a useful exercise though and will probably keep doing it for future retrospectives., which I plan to write every year.

Overall I’d say it’s been a good year but with tons of challenges.

⬆️ Top highlight

Julia and I got engaged. She said “yes”. 💍

⬇️ Top lowlight

Had to part ways with my dog, Chaves. I won’t go into details on this one but suffice to say it was an incredibly painful and traumatic event.

📚 Key Learnings

“Learn to accept people for who they are”

“The only measure of intelligence is getting what you want out of life”

The quality of your thoughts determine the quality of your life”

You are who you pretend to be”

🔑 Key moments

This bullet point deserves a more in-depth explanation. 4 months of sabbatical was definitely less than I was hoping to take, however I couldn’t let this opportunity go by. As Tim Ferriss mentioned on The 4-Hour Workweek, “For all of the most important things, the timing always sucks.”

I ran into QuickNode organically while doing a Google search for a BSC node service, after getting frustrated trying to spin it up it myself for a side project I was working on to learn web3.

Even though I hadn’t previously tried QuickNode as a customer, I was really both impressed and excited by the business they built, especially with such a small team. I decided to reach out and chat. We immediately connected and I felt like it was the right move, but was still a bit hesitant. After a lot of deliberation, I finally decided to take the leap and join about a month later.

QuickNode checked all the boxes for me: Small, humble and talented team, web3, infrastructure as a service, hyper growth and early stage, technically challenging. I had been playing with the idea to go back to my roots and join a startup again, but this time in the crypto space. The timing was right. That was the opportunityI was looking for.

Fast forward another 4 months, I couldn’t be happier with my decision. The company is in a great trajectory, I’m enjoying the work tremendously and having fun on a daily basis. A lot of times it doesn’t feel like work, that feeling when you get so deep in “the zone” that when you look at your watch and it’s already 5pm and you realize that the day flew by. That’s the feeling I was looking for. It felt right.

The new job, coupled with a newly minted engagement, officially marked the end of a tide of negative events that had happened in a row during the first half of the year. It’s all behind me now.

This year I also decided to take my mental health more seriously and act on it. Looking back it’s pretty obvious. Hindsight is 20/20. I was in a bad place and needed to do something about it. I’m lucky enough to have a support system around me that helped navigating these dark times and leaving them behind. Today decide to I focus more on positivity, having a balanced life and have been trying to get into a daily meditation routine 🧘🏽. This is a big focus are for me in 2022.

Beyond that, even managed to go on a surf trip to Fuerteventura in the Canary Islands, where I tried to improve a bit my surf skills and met with a group of extremely talented entrepreneurs. I had a great time and am looking forward to more of these in the future. Maybe surfing in Portugal in 2022? 🏄🏻‍♂️

Aloha! Happy new year.