2018. Well, nice knowing ya. It is quite crazy how quickly 365 days fly by. I remember last December 31st; I sat with my family and explained my hopes for the coming year. Some filled with optimism – let’s make this happen! – while others hinted at a tone of somewhat desperation – I really, really hope this happens. But, my resolutions and goals of the coming year also fell under one more, less-obvious category: who even knows what will happen? And, below, you find these “who even knows what will happen?” goals, set by myself about my now-nonprofit (NFP) organization, Easy Hoops, on December 31st, 2017.
Continue to form it into a successful business
Start recurring classes or group lessons
Continue to donate time and money to program
Take it upon myself
Become more passionate about it
Meet new people through it
Speak about it
Wow. I am proud. I am happy. And I am optimistic. Here is how my hard-working Easy Hoops team and I turned these visions into a reality. (“it” refers to Easy Hoops) Continue to form it into a successful business:success is somewhat of a loose term. Well, to me, success is best measured from gauging where you were, where you wanted to be, and where you are. To say the least, we are far, far past where we expected to be a year ago, today. Start recurring classes or group lessons: Easy Hoops has been incredibly fortunate to partner with other local NFP organizations such as Aspiritech and Our Place of New Trier to set up consistent life/social/basketball skill development clinics. Easy Hoops and Aspiritech meet around once a quarter, and Easy Hoops and Our Place unite every Friday afternoon. Teamwork makes the dream work! Continue to donate time and money to program / Take it upon myself / Become more passionate about it: Safely said, Easy Hoops is a part of me, and I could not ask for it any other way. I care for this organization deeply, and proudly make it my #1 priority. I, truly, cannot ask for it to be any other way. Though I am sometimes faced with obstacles, they give me opportunities to grow. That is why I love working with Easy Hoops. The work has never been a chore; rather, always an opportunity to get better! Meet new people through it: What a privilege. Working with fellow NFP founders, activists, hanging around with the coaches who are beyond passionate about teaching their lessons, and seeing the joy on participants’ faces: that is the greatest gift of all; forming these incredible relationships! Speak about it: though I have not engaged in many public speaking arrangements, I want to thank a few special organizations and publications for providing me with an outlet to share Easy Hoops’ mission: The Glencoe Compass, The Glencoe Anchor, The Highland Park Landmark, The Winnetka Current, Apple’s iBooks (Easy Hoops: How to Make a Difference iBook), New Trier High School, Lake of the Woods and Greenwoods Camps, and Autism Speaks. Thank you for supporting us and our mission of empowering all individuals through an individualized basketball environment. As the year comes to a close, I am very grateful for two important things (and many more, of course): a 2018 filled with growth and hard work, and as we are on the horizon of 2019: a year filled with organization, more hard work, passion, prosperity, and most of all, “shooting for your best self”. Thank you all for reading, and have a Happy New Year.