2020 I’ll Be Building ‘Brick By Brick’ – And a Look Back to 2019

2020 I'll Be Building 'Brick By Brick' - And a Look Back to 2019

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Hey, Team – Great to see you again! It’s been a minute… 


As I’ll get into below, I’ve been prioritizing professional time in other realms which has been a great and at times slightly frustrating thing. And while I’ll cover all of that below, I want to let you know that although my new content hasn’t been nearly as frequent as it was when we started 2019 – I haven’t quit working behind the scenes.


Not by a longshot.


In fact, since I launched the blog (March 1, 2016) I’ve published over 360 articles covering the gamut of business, fitness, family, finance, entrepreneurship, personal development, … and how each of those topics has intersected with my specific life – and my journey – along the way. And in traveling that path with you, I’ve earned an income, made great friends, honed some aspects of my communication skills, and – dare I say – cultivated a growing audience.


For all of that – Thank you. Sincerely. 


I’m writing today (for the first time on this blog since October 16, 2019) because I love this time of year and what it can do for long-term thinking. And honestly – I missed writing on MikedUp Blog. So…


I’m covering both my goals from last year, what I’ve learned from them and how I’ve grown, and the goals I’m setting for myself in 2020


But contrary to the paragraphs I’ve written about each of the 15-20 goals I’ve had for the past few years – I’m streamlining things this time around: a 1 sentence cap to ‘discuss’ each goal with an additional summation paragraph at the end.


Here are some links to past goals posts:



So if you’ve been missing your Mike fix – this one’s for you (and thanks for being here)!


My look back to 2019 and an honest evaluation of my performance


I branded 2019 as “The Year of Change” and damn did I hit that nail on the head… We had our second daughter (Stella), I quit my job as a Forensic Scientist (which I had for 7 years), and my wife and I dove all-in to our entrepreneurial venture – Monfredi Family Dental. And as Eric Church would say – ‘we had a record year’.



But enough beating around the bush… It’s judgment day, friends (W=Win / L=Loss)


(Family Goals) 1- Take a monthly date with my wife – W


I live with, work with, parent with, and love unconditionally the woman I married; and while we’ve spent a ton of time together this year, we’ve loved most every minute and even carved out some ‘date’ time for just the 2 of us.


2- Prioritize focused family time – W


Our schedule at work is M-Th, 8-4:30, and as a result, we’ve freed up 20% more family time on Fridays and throughout the week which reduces stress and boosts happiness.


3- Adventure together – W


“We took an 11-hour road trip with a 6-month-old – I’d say we’re adventuring plenty.” – my wife when I asked her if I should get a passing grade for this category.


4- Pray together daily – W


We’ve enriched prayer in our family more so than ever before, and while we’re teaching our daughters why and how to pray, we’re working toward improvement in this category daily.


(Personal Development Goals) 5- Read 1 book each quarter – L


I read 2.5 new books this year and a couple of previously reads, but I’ve recaught the bug and am halfway through a great one right now – stay tuned…


Principles: Life and Work by Ray Dalio


6- Continue networking both online and in real life – ??


I’ll be honest – I don’t even know that this goal means… But I’m a pretty social guy who loves a good conversation with good people – I’ll work toward improvement.


(Fitness Goals) 7- 50 Daily push-ups – L


I did push-ups 363 days last year, battling through hospital stays, sleepless nights, etc… but the flu took me out for 2 days.


8- Never miss a Monday workout – W


Some were better than others but on each and every Monday – I showed up.


9- Work out at least 3 times per week – W


I’m not me when I’m not exercising in some capacity.


(Business Goals) 10- Grow revenue by 10% – W


We grew 28.1% last year… Yes – you read that right (this is why I haven’t been publishing much new content here lately).



(Shameless Plug: We started a blog for our business. If you’d like to have some fun and learn a lot about your oral health – please head over and check it out. Thank you!)


11- Give back to our community – W


Perhaps the favorite part of my job, we’ve helped work at a soup kitchen, donated Christmas presents to kids in our community, and helped educate kids on the importance of oral hygiene, to name a few.



12- Start our 401k and save for retirement again – W


Done and done.


13- Earn $20,000 of side income – L


I earned $2,366 from this here blog last year, both directly and indirectly – not bad, but not $20k.


(Blogging Goals) 14- Double blog traffic – L


2018 Basis: (Pageviews – 100,061 / Subscribers – 142 / Twitter Fam – 1,475)

2019 Stats: (Pageviews – 58,742 / Subscribers – 145 / Twitter followers – 1,858)


15- Earn more than $1,200 per year from the blog – W


See #13 above.


16- Help people with fitness, finance, or other general advice – ??


This one is hard to measure, but if you’ve decided you want to improve and I’m able to help in some way – I normally will.



2019 – The Year of Change – in Summation


I reprioritized my life in 2019. First off, I had wayyyy too many goals for myself. It wasn’t possible to focus intently on each and everyone, and I realized this midway through. So sure, I took some L’s but I also took some huge W’s. And in the end, I’m expecting the L’s I took will turn out as W’s because forfeiting those goals and that time allowed me to focus on the goals that mattered more to me.


My family is flourishing, our health is good, our business is growing and thriving with more room to go. I am beyond blessed and eternally grateful for the accomplishments made and the blessings provided in 2019. But I’ll be refining and re-defining my approach in 2020.


Introducing 2020 – The Year of Growth


I’m setting only 5 goals for myself this year, each of which designed to challenge my normal and push me to an improved level in 2021. Here they are


1- Prioritize, love, and be present in your family


The relationships I have with my wife and my two daughters are unquestionably the most important things in my life. I’ll work to show love through personal growth, selfless and respectful acts, and mental energy spent. I’ll work to nurture these relationships to the best of my ability and to grow in love with my family because this is the most important thing.


2- Develop new and existing skills and deploy them


This goal is all about personal development and it has 3 components:

  • Learn – through reading, podcasts, and networking with people who have done the things I aspire to do
  • Filter – by determining the information and approach that’s best for me and my personal and professional goals – and ignoring everything else that doesn’t help me achieve my goals
  • Act – Put thinking to bed and move forward so that new experiences can be made and I can begin learning anew. Then repeat.


I have 3 large professional goals that I’m not quite ready to share here, but the approach above is designed to make progress toward each. I’ll report back in time.


3- Work toward improved fitness daily


No written-out push-up quotas or a set number of workouts per week this year. Instead, I’ll be working toward an improved fitness day in and out. This means tracking the quality and calories of food entering my body, designing my own fitness regimen that will help me achieve greater strength, flexibility, and endurance (this program is in progress), and setting category-specific goals in my fitness world.


Here’s one I am willing to share – this year I will complete a triathlon.


4- Grow our business by 30%


We grew 28.1% last year, which one hell of a mark to hit. And while we’re extremely proud and humbled, I know there is more than can be done to build upon that growth. One of the next articles I write either here or as one of my regular contributions on Dr. Bicuspid (an industry-specific site) will describe the steps we took to achieve those results and what we plan to do to eclipse them moving forward.


But I’ll summarize it with this – our business is about people. We make a huge effort to take great care of our Team and work to give them a sense of ownership in the business, and as a result, they take care of our patients. Our patients then return the favor by taking care of us.



5- Give 


Both as a family and through our business, we have made it a priority to give of our time, money, and resources to help various groups in our community – and perhaps more than any non-family item, this makes me the proudest. We’ll give because we can, because it’s the right thing to do, and because it enriches our souls – and we’ll find more and better ways to do so moving forward.


2020 The Year of Growth – Plan Summary


We’ve laid the foundation but now it’s time to raise the building. I’ll plan to build upon the pillars of this house (family, personal growth, fitness, business, and charity) brick by brick without letting one moment go unused. You get one life in this world – go live it. 


(Photo courtesy of Dan and Britt Brooks)

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    1. SC!! Welcome to 2020! Thanks so much for stopping by and for dropping a line! You know… the more I listen to the Chief the more I enjoy his stuff. So far I’ve only heard some of it, but I’m about to put a drink in my hand and attack his catalog like a Springsteen fueled wrecking ball at Talladega… homegirl

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