What did I learn in 2012?

Written by on Jan 1 2013

This year I learned I’m fragile, both mentally and physically.

In January, I fell while walking to lunch and herniated a couple of disks in my lower back. Even after spending thousands of dollars (above insurance coverage), I’m still in pain. This is after years of football (high school and college) where I felt indestructible.

Pride comes just before fall. This is a constant battle for me. In a typical week I go from “Allan is a smart guy” to “Allan, you’re an idiot.”

Poor business decisions happen quickly and must be undone quickly. We ventured into a few businesses this year that sucked the energy from me and the harmony from Steve and I. Now things are back to normal, thank God.

My communication skills (which I thought were very finely tuned) are too short, especially to the people close to me. I’ll respond quickly to an email, being direct and clear, but my brevity is taken as “upset.” I’ve been making a more conscious effort to add pleasantries and further communication to relay my emotion to the reader. I have much to learn.

My life has six pillars: work, health, husband, parenting, other relationships, and creativity (outside of pixels).

  • I must feel like I’m helping move the company to a better “place.”
  • I must feel okay about my body (being in pain with my back didn’t help).
  • I have to feel like my relationship with Anna, my wife, is connected and joyful.
  • My ability to spend time with my kids, teach them and watch them grow and become little people must be intact.
  • I must have friendships, I need other people, family, friends, I need this. I have a hard time with this because I feel like I’m always too busy to call my sisters.
  • I need to create things, I need to feel creative outside of pixels. I’ve started building furniture.

This year has further reinforced my belief that friends are worth more than gold. I don’t know how we’ve done it but Steve and I have been able to connect with amazing people and create real friendships. Our friends spread the word about all the silly things we try to do (LessAccounting, LessConf, LessFilms, LessMoney Workshops). And it appears to be working.

I seem to be able to remember my mistakes and faults much easier than the things I’ve done well, but who wants to read a blog post about all the things I did well this year? Lame.


Hi I'm Allan,

I wrote the article you're reading... I'm one of the co-founders of LessEverything. I love my family more than breathing and I love creating videos about our family adventures.

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