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Some things, they say, never really change.

My last Review for Uncle Efe was written exactly three years ago, a few hours to its time for publishing. And here we are, a few hours to the due date of this post and yours truly is squatting in a hotel room and typing this post out (even though he had like a month to start) for the culture.

So Let’s Talk 2017

The biggest lesson I’ve learned this year is, “To he who has, more is given”

Looking at the things I do have in relation to the things I want to get, I have realised this –
No matter how big a target is, as long as you know and are willing to use the little in your possession, more will be added to your arsenal.

In 2017 I have

Begun designing my Life: One important lesson I learned this year, is that in life, you get exactly what you want. While that may seem like nothing, it’s taught me to want things for myself. Good things, for myself and my family. With wanting, has come the designing. Going from what I want to happen to figuring out how it’s going to happen. I don’t have all the pieces together yet, but my life is no longer waiting to be blown in any direction the winds go. I am intentional, living life by design.

Engaged in some serious Professional Development: This year was really an educational deep dive for me. I took a lot of time to learn about new systems & approaches to movement I read books, watched a ton of videos, and tested a lot of new stuff with my clients. This year, I’ve totally used & celebrated ideas from Dr. Kelly Starrett’s MobilityWod system, Mike Boyle’s Functional Training, Dr. Gray Cook’s FMS, and Gold Medal Bodies’ PPPPR. I got my first certification as a Nutrition Coach Level 1 with Precision nutrition and also became a Pro Coach, allowing me to take more Online Training clients.

“I want to grow. I want to be better. You Grow. We all grow. We're made to grow. You either evolve or you disappear.” ― Tupac Shakur • I remember finding @precisionnutrition two years ago, after my girlfriend (now wife) sent me a link to an article on their site about healthy eating. I'd just decided to become a fitness professional, and I really wasn't sure where to start. I remember looking at their posts and feeling like I could never understand all the things they were talking about or even be the kind of fitness professional they spoke of. I'd read about the LV1 certification, but I couldn't afford it, and I was very worried that I wouldn't be able to make the best of it. • So I decided to take some time to figure things out by myself. I read tons of articles from books, the PN site and other sites about fitness, nutrition and helping people change themselves. I tried my hands out at coaching – online, in person, groups, etc. I helped people succeed in their quests to live healthier, be stronger and lose weight, and God only knows how many people I failed to help effectively, but I did that too. Over the last couple of years, I've learned a lot about healthy diets, mobility, bodyweight fitness, coaching methods, and more. But I've known in my heart that it hasn't been enough. To be an elite coach, I've always known I'd have to learn from those I consider to be elite. • This week, my books for Precision Nutrition's LV 1 Certification program came in the mail. I dare say, it's time for that level up. • Can you tell that I'm excited? 😜 #WeaknessCompelsStrength PS. @mobilitywod @gmbfitness see you soon 😉

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Started a group class: In August 2016, I started a private group fitness class called The MetaFit Sessions in Yaba. I closed down that class in March 2017 just before I got married. In July of 2017 I joined the Breathe Ng community and started a Movement class called “Move Better & Flow”. I teach a different approach to workouts, using unusual movements, games and group learning to encourage my students to move better and move often.

Changed my payment scheme and began taking clients on retainer: In 2016, I learned that living month to month as a freelancer was quite the challenge. Lol I’m understating it. Depending on clients to keep paying month after month for “fitfam” in this Lagos where everybody was hustling and trying to hold body was not really a great idea. In 2017, I had to retarget my personal training clients and switch payment schemes into blocks. This made it easier for my clients to plan payments and for me to collect them. Going into 2018, both PT and OT clients will receive block pricing to keep the flow going.

Got married to the love of my life: When I was younger, I thought that I would be married by the time I was 27. But life had a different plan for me, and I met the love of my life just before I turned 25, and married her the year I turned 30. One of the warmest memories I have this year is of her vowing to love me through all that life can throw at us, and I’m grateful that I’ve been given this amazing person to go through the rest of my life with. As it turns out, today’s the day (five years ago) when we decided to be together and make our relationship work, so yay to us!

Turned 30: Yes, everyone does this at some point in their lives. I’ve lived three decades on this earth, and I plan to be here – learning, living and growing – for at least thrice that time.

Moved into my own home: In 2016, I’d moved out of my little mini flat and moved back in with my dad because I couldn’t afford to pay rent. In 2017 I was able to pay rent and move my wife and I into our new home. Next step: buy land and build my own home!

#MONDAY • The weekend was crazy hectic with moving to our new home and managing through uncertain situations. I'm grateful to have a place to lay my head down and call my home. Sharing it with @thealaroro makes it that much more special. • Anyways, so I missed the last three days of the #naijayogatoo challenge, but I've decided to do the poses still… just cos… yeah. Lol. • So here's #day6 of the #naijayogatoo challenge. @dee.liketheletter chose #hanumanasana, which is a long time love of mine. Benefits of practicing this pose include total #flexibility gains through your legs as it stretches the thighs, hammies and groin. • How did your weekend go? Did you start off the new week with happiness? Remember that everything good will come, and have a great week! • #WeaknessCompelsStrength 📸@thealaroro

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Started investing: From Money Markets, to Cryptocurrency and ever online stock brokers, I gave up the excuse of never having money and started to put money away so that it can work and build more wealth. Investing is the only way to make any impact on this financial rat race, and so that’s the way we’ll go.

Started my mental health seriously: My mental health was never as important to me as it became in 2017. I realized that being a mental ball of fire all the time was not only dangerous for me, but hurts the people around me as well. My first step towards improving this was meditation using the Headspace app which worked really well for me. Since then, I’ve made meditation, journaling and regular reflections a part of my daily life. While the adjustment has been challenging, I’ve definitely seen the benefits of being more mindful and deliberate about my mental health. Next step in 2018: Start seeing a therapist.

Stood up to a bully

Stood up for my friends: While I was one of the first people in my circle of friends to get married, a lot of us got married in 2017 and I was honored to be able to stand up for them as they did for me. Congratulations to my homies that tied the knot… y’all need to have babies (I’m already a daddy so I’m ahead) real quick!

 

Let go of Dolapo: Dolapo, my 1986 Volkswagen Jetta was a trusty steed, for many a year. In 2017, I finally said goodbye to her. While I want to say it was a sad time, I swear I was so happy to let go and stop donating ridiculous amounts of money to mechanics every other week.

(that’s her in the background)

Forgave a friend who hurt me: I realized the strength that grows and the burden that is lifted when you forgive. Anger and resentment are such burdens.

Made new connections: From new friends, to professional connections, my web has grown in 2017.

Made my peace with Christianity, and left it alone: The backdrop for most of my life as I remember it is set behind Christianity and the struggles I’ve had with it. In 2017 I decided that I would find a different path for myself. 2018 is the year I walk, eyes wide open into the world of Stoic Philosophy.

President Barack Obama wipes sweat from his forehead while speaking to supporters during a campaign stop in Windham, N.H., Saturday, Aug. 18, 2012. (AP Photo/Winslow Townson)

That took a while.

That isn’t an exhaustive list of things that I did this year, but it’s a list I’ll be glad to look and expand upon next year.

I’m immensely grateful for all the people and events that came together for my life to have turned out the way it did this year. I recognize that I’m fortunate to have made so much progress, and I look forward to doing more in 2018, with what has been given to me in 2017.

And for you reading, thank you for being part of my journey.

I hope our 2018 review will be even better, and give us many more reasons to be grateful.

 

Panda

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