It’s officially time for my Year In Review. This is where I share the good and bad things that happened in my business (and life) during the 2022 calendar year.

I started doing this back in 2018 and kept it going in 2019, 2020, and 2021. And here we are again in twenty twenty-two.

Why Do This Every Year?

  • To acknowledge what I accomplished: Making note of the good things that happened can help me build confidence and momentum going forward.
  • To review the goals I didn’t achieve and any failures along the way: This helps me see where I need to improve to avoid repeating the same mistakes.

Writing these annual reviews takes a lot of time and effort. However, each year, once it’s finished, I’m always glad that I did. 

A Look Back at My Goals for 2022:

I shared my goals for this year in last year’s review. Now I’m going to take a closer look at each one to see how I did. So, without further ado, let’s dive in:

1. Increase My Monthly Income

I started an online business back in 2016 while still in college. I passed two national board exams to become a registered respiratory therapist (RRT) as I worked on my business behind the scenes.

I did this for two years before I finally started earning enough to quit my job in 2018. And I basically watched my income grow month after month throughout this entire time.

Of course, I had some months that were up and down. But, for the most part, as my business grew, my monthly income continued to grow along with it.

Until 2022.

For the first ever, I earned less than I did in the previous year.

These (I think) are the main reasons why:

  1. Macroeconomic conditions (i.e., the economy)
  2. Complacency (i.e., me)

It’s no secret that, at the time of this writing, the economy has undeniably been moving in the wrong direction. While this is out of my control, it has definitely had an effect on my business in multiple ways.

The second reason, and I hate to admit it: I got complacent.

Result: Fail ❌

2020 was a great year, and then 2021 got off to a hot start. As a result, I admittedly began to think I was smarter than I actually am, and I stop working as hard. That plus the changes in economic conditions led to less profit in 2022.

Lesson: Not making that mistake again.

2. Invest 50% of My Income

I achieved this goal because I was able to save and invest slightly more than half my income this year. I have a (somewhat) diversified investment portfolio that includes the following:

  • Cryptocurrency
  • Index funds
  • Rental property
  • REITs
  • Land
  • Multi-family syndications
  • Individual stocks
  • Bitcoin mining

This year I started looking for ways to invest for cash flow instead of an average rate of return. In other words, I started investing more in assets that pay me monthly instead of those where I wait and hope the value increases in the future.

More on this later in the section about creating new passive income streams.

Result: Complete ✅

Almost every asset class is down right now, which, to me, seems like it’s a good time to buy the dip. Not financial advice, but I’m definitely accumulating now and throughout the next 1–3 years.

In my opinion, the opportunity cost of not buying at these low prices outweighs the risk of a potential further decrease in price. Furthermore, it also helps that I have 33+ years for the market to recover if we do see a prolonged recession.

3. Publish 365 New YouTube Videos

Last year, my channel grew by more than 600,000 subscribers, and I had multiple videos get more than 5 million views.

This happened as a result of publishing a new video every day for the entire year.

YouTube quickly became my #1 source of income, so I set a goal to keep the daily publishing streak going throughout 2022.

However…

In April, my channel growth hit a plateau, and I decided to let the streak come to an end.

Advertisers across the board cut spending, which resulted in creators earning less in ad revenue. This is why I decided to stop publishing daily, as the return on time invested was no longer worth it.

Result: Fail ❌

I only published 184 videos in 2022; therefore, I failed to reach my initial goal of publishing a new video every day. However, that’s more than 3 videos per week on average, which is a pace that I can live with.

4. Publish 52 New Articles on My Website

When running a website, publishing more articles results in more traffic, which usually equates to more income.

My goal was to publish one new article per week, and I more than tripled this goal.

Result: Complete ✅

After neglecting my website for most of 2021 to focus on YouTube, it was much more of a priority this year. I expect to see results throughout 2023 from work I completed last year as the new articles start ranking higher and getting more traffic.

5. Surpass 1 Million Subscribers on YouTube

My channel had around 775,000 subscribers at the start of the year. This means that to reach my goal of one million, I only needed 225,000 more.

I thought this would be easy, but I was wrong.

As previously mentioned, my channel hit a major plateau where views, subscribers, and, unfortunately, ad revenue all began to stagnate. Therefore, I failed to hit my goal of reaching one million subscribers.

brant reader youtube subscribers 2022

Result: Fail ❌

My channel gained approximately 119,000 subscribers this year, which is around 326 per day on average. This brings the total number up to around 894,000 subscribers.

If my current growth rate remains the same, I’ll surpass one million next year, and that’s the goal. So, hopefully, I’ll get the fancy gold plaque from YouTube in 2023.

6. Increase My YouTube Income

I already mentioned it, but publishing a new video every day in 2021 helped my views and subscriber count increase in a major way.

I was hoping to keep the train moving this year, but the infamous plateau I had feared finally reared its ugly head. 

Therefore, my YouTube income was lower this year compared to last.

Result: Fail ❌

However, the good news is:

My monthly income from YouTube has established a reliable baseline due to the hundreds of videos I’ve published over the years. In other words, I could completely stop creating new videos and my channel would continue to earn thanks to work I’ve already completed.

But of course, that’s not the plan, as I’m going to continue working on and investing back into the channel for years to come.

7. Create Two New Passive Income Streams

As previously mentioned, this year, I started investing in assets that provide cash flow instead of an average rate of return. My mindset on this shifted after I read a book called The Lifestyle Investor (highly recommend).

Now my goal isn’t to accumulate a massive nest egg but to earn enough passive income that exceeds all my expenses.

That’s true financial freedom.

I met my goal for this year, as I was able to add five new passive income streams, including:

  1. Syndications
  2. Dividend stocks
  3. Bitcoin mining

First, I invested in three multi-family syndication deals through CrowdStreet. This basically means that I’m a limited partner and partial owner of three different apartment complexes.

Now I earn a percentage of the monthly rent paid by tenants, and I get to take advantage of appreciation as the value of the properties increases over time.

However, it’s truly passive for me as a limited partner because I don’t have to manage the property, collect rent, or make repairs. I invested money upfront, and now I just sit back and receive monthly or quarterly distributions.

I also started a new dividend stock portfolio outside of a retirement account, which means that I don’t have to wait until I’m 65 to access the funds. I’m investing in quality companies with strong dividend growth rates who pay healthy yields.

I decided to use M1 Finance for this portfolio because their pie investing feature makes it simple to reinvest dividends and maintain a desired allocation.

Finally, I invested in Bitcoin miners that earn BTC and send it straight to my wallet. If I were running the miners myself, this investment would not be considered passive income.

However, I hired a company that does everything for me (for a fee, of course). In other words, I purchased the miners, but they run them for me in their warehouse, which makes it truly passive on my end.

Result: Complete ✅

People often mistake passive income for residual income. For example, my YouTube channel is not a truly passive income stream because there is work and maintenance involved.

True passive income is when you invest money upfront and then earn in perpetuity without any additional effort. 

8. Have a New Highest-Earning Month Ever

January of 2022 was my highest earning month ever. So, while I technically achieved this goal, there is one major caveat:

The earnings were from work I completed last year.

December of 2021 was my best month ever on YouTube, but YouTube has a 21-day payment processing period. Therefore, I didn’t actually get paid until January, which blew my previous highest earning month out of the water. 

Result: Complete ✅

I guess this goal was technically achieved? I don’t know; I’m unsure how I feel about it. I will say that my new monthly total will be difficult to reach in the current state of my business. But it’s something to strive for. 

9. Invest in Commercial Real Estate

I already mentioned that I invested in three separate syndication deals for multi-family real estate. As a limited partner in these deals, I earn passive income while saving money on taxes thanks to depreciation.

I also benefit if the property appreciates in value, which, historically, has always happened. 

Result: Complete ✅

Hopefully, I can continue to invest in a few of these deals every year until my passive income eventually exceeds my expenses.

10. Update and Improve All Existing Products

My primary website sells three digital products, which are online educational courses. They include premium videos, audio, quizzes, and downloadable PDFs for my students.

It had been almost three years since I’d made any significant changes to my courses, so my goal was to completely update and improve all the materials.

This was a very time-consuming project, but thankfully, I was able to get it done.

Now I feel great about marketing and promoting my products because I’m confident that they’ll help my students reach their goals.

Result: Complete ✅

Marketing is arguably the most important aspect of running an online business, as it is responsible for attracting and retaining customers, generating leads, and ultimately driving sales and revenue.

However, without a valuable product or service to offer, even the most well-executed marketing efforts will struggle to bring in and retain customers.

I’m proud of the products I’ve built, and I will make radical changes to my sales funnels and marketing strategy in 2023. I look forward to the results that will come next year. 

11. Launch a New Product

I had hoped to create and launch a new product by the end of the year, but unfortunately, I was unable to do so.

Result: Fail ❌

Updating and improving my current products took way longer and much more time than I expected. Therefore, I ran out of time and failed to launch a new product this year. 

General rule of thumb: You can pretty much count on the fact that almost everything will take longer than you expect it to take. This applies to literally everything.

12. Read at Least 35 New Books

My life changed in 2012 when I first started reading books. This is one of the most important habits I practice on a daily basis.

This year I read or listened to 39 books, which include:

  1. Powerful Self-Confidence [Audiobook]
  2. Napoleon Hill’s Golden Rules [Audiobook]
  3. The Perfect Week Formula
  4. The Lost Secret [Audiobook]
  5. Success and Something Greater [Audiobook]
  6. Passive Income, Aggressive Retirement [Audiobook]
  7. The Lifestyle Investor
  8. Wealth Can’t Wait [Audiobook]
  9. Tribe of Millionaires [Audiobook]
  10. Future Proofing You [Audiobook]
  11. Passive Investing Made Simple
  12. The Great Rat-Race Escape [Audiobook]
  13. The Busy Professional’s Guide to Passive Real Estate Investing
  14. You2
  15. Maximum Achievement [Audiobook]
  16. The Almanack of Naval Ravikant
  17. The Uncommunist Manifesto
  18. The Sovereign Individual [Audiobook]
  19. The 10x Mentor [Audiobook]
  20. The Breakthrough Code
  21. F–k Your Feelings [Audiobook]
  22. The Unplugged Alpha [Audiobook]
  23. You are a Badass Every Day
  24. Greenlights [Audiobook]
  25. Bluefishing [Audiobook]
  26. Thinking Big [Audiobook]
  27. How to Get Rich [Audiobook]
  28. How to Talk to Anybody, Anytime, Anywhere [Audiobook]
  29. The Power of One More [Audiobook]
  30. How I Found Freedom in an Unfree World [Audiobook]
  31. Estrogeneration [Audiobook]
  32. Badass Habits
  33. How to Have Confidence and Power in Dealing with People [Audiobook]
  34. Passive Investing in Commercial Real Estate [Audiobook]
  35. As a Man Thinketh [Audiobook]
  36. The Dip
  37. Hook Point [Audiobook]
  38. Mapping Out the Millionaire Mystery [Audiobook]
  39. The 6 Habits of Growth [Audiobook]

I’ve started listening to more and more audiobooks via Audible over recent years. I prefer reading the physical copy; however, I can listen faster, which helps me consume more books in less time. 

Result: Complete ✅

If I had to choose only five, the books that stood out this year are The Lifestyle Investor, The Sovereign Individual, The Breakthrough Code, Greenlights, and How I Found Freedom in an Unfree World.

13. Travel to a New Country

I took three international trips this year:

  1. Aruba
  2. Mexico City
  3. Cancun

I can’t imagine ever not traveling, especially when it’s free or highly discounted. Where should I go in 2023?

brant reader in aruba

Result: Complete ✅

I’ve been to Mexico several times, but this was my first time visiting Aruba. Therefore, I met my goal of visiting a new country this year.

14. Travel to Four New Cities in the U.S.

I visited several cities within the United States this year, including the following:

  1. New Orleans, LA
  2. Memphis, TN
  3. South Lake Tahoe, CA
  4. Hollywood, FL
  5. Washington, D.C.
  6. Las Vegas, NV
  7. Oxford, MS
  8. Dallas, TX
  9. Omaha, NE
  10. New Braunfels, TX
  11. San Antonio, TX
  12. College Station, TX
  13. Houston, TX

(For it to count, I had to stay and spend the night in that location.)

brant reader travel 2022

Result: Complete ✅

Of the cities listed, seven were new, which means that I did accomplish my goal for domestic travel this year.

15. Attend Two Business Live Events

I went to three business conferences this year:

  1. Market Disruptors Live
  2. Investorcon 2.0
  3. Nomad Capitalist Live

The information shared at these events was okay, but the true value came from 1) networking and 2) getting out of my comfort zone.

brant reader live events 2022

Result: Complete ✅

Not sure which events I’ll attend in 2023. Any recommendations? If so, let me know.

Other Stuff from 2022:

Aside from the accomplishments and failures listed above, here are some other things that happened this year:

1. Moved Into a New Home

I purchased and closed on a house at the end of 2021 and moved in January of this year. It’s located on a golf course and will make a great rental property once I decide to leave.

Bonus: I locked in a 30-year mortgage on this property just before the Fed started raising interest rates. Hashtag blessed.

2. Checked Off 8 Things From My Life List

I created a ‘Life List‘ a few years ago, which is just a fancy name for my “bucket list.” It includes several things I want to do before I die.

Here’s everything I checked off this year:

  1. Became an accredited investor
  2. Invested in commercial real estate
  3. Visited Lake Tahoe, CA
  4. Visited Houston, TX
  5. Visited San Antonio, TX
  6. Visited Washington D.C.
  7. Visited a new SEC stadium (Texas A&M)
  8. Watched Ole Miss win a national championship

I’m glad I took the time to create this list, as it’s a great method for helping me set and achieve new goals.

3. I Got Hacked. 🔓

Long story short: A hacker convinced my cellphone provider to switch my sim card over to their phone. This is known as sim swapping, and it gave the hacker complete access to my phone number. Then they were able to change the passwords of my primary email accounts using text message 2FA.

This allowed them to lock me out while simultaneously gaining access to essentially all of my financial accounts.

It was a nightmare. 

To top it all off, this happened while I was at a college football game. So when my phone quit working, I assumed it was for being in a large crowd of people. Therefore, I was in no position to stop the hacker until it was far too late.

To make matters worse, they were able to access one of my cryptocurrency accounts and steal over $10k worth of crypto.

Ouch.

I was eventually able to get my phone number back the next day, which then allowed me to regain access to all my accounts. But the damage was already done.

Lesson learned: My cellphone provider really screwed me over by moving my phone number over to the hacker’s phone, but…

It’s all my fault.

There’s no other option than to take full responsibility. I should have taken measures to prevent this from happening in the first place.

But I didn’t. And that’s on me.

It was a very expensive lesson, but, honestly, in a way, I’m glad it happened. Things could have been sooo much worse. But thankfully, the fraudster was only after my crypto.

And most importantly, the majority of my crypto was already stored in a hardware wallet, so there was no possible way for them to access it. 

I’m sharing all this because I want to be fully transparent. I’ve written about a lot of good things over the years, but I also feel compelled to share the bad.

And, oh buddy, was this bad.

By doing so, I can (hopefully) help prevent something like this from happening to you. To learn more, please read this article and take the necessary steps to secure ALL your accounts.

Do it. Literally, go secure your accounts right now

And whatever you do, please do not enable text as a method for two-factor authentication. That’s the one major mistake I made that allowed the hacker to gain access to my account. Instead, it’s better to use an authenticator app (e.g., Google authenticator). 

4. ‘Twas a Great Year

This year’s annual review expresses more negativity that in years past. However, while not as good on paper as 2021, this was still a phenomenal year.

It just goes to show how far I’ve come that I’m disappointed about earning more than 10x what I made in one year working as a respiratory therapist.

And I don’t take that for granted. I’m extremely grateful to be in the position that I’m in.

My Goals for 2023:

Now that I’ve shared my accomplishments (and failures) from 2022, here are my goals for the coming year:

  1. Publish 175 new articles on my main website
  2. Publish 10 new articles on this website
  3. Publish 156 new YouTube Videos
  4. Surpass 1 million subscribers on YouTube
  5. Invest in at least 3 new syndication deals
  6. Read at least 35 new books
  7. Travel to a new country
  8. Travel to 4 new cities in the United States
  9. Attend 2 business live events
  10. Complete at least 400 workouts
  11. Check at least 5 things off my ‘Life List’

Sharing my goals publicly helps keep me accountable and increases my chances of accomplishing them.

I revisit these goals on the 1st of every month to check my progress. This helps keep them fresh in my mind so I can stay on track to reach them by the end of the year.

Final Thoughts

Reminder: I didn’t write this annual review for you. I wrote it for me.

Because a lot of growth comes from looking back at the good and bad things that happened in the previous year.

And how could I possibly remember everything without documenting it?

With that said, I am grateful that you spent some of your valuable time reading this review to the end. I hope something I shared can help or inspire you in some way. 

In 2023, I’m going to expand on the good and learn from the bad things that happened in the previous year. I hope you’ll do the same.

Thanks again for reading! 

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© 2023 Readerprises LLC // Legal Stuff

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© 2023 Readerprises LLC // Legal Stuff