Ben Lobaugh Online

I think, therefore I am. I am, therefore I sail

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Books I read in 2017

love reading! When most of my peers were struggling learning to read simple words I was reading full novels, such as the Hardy Boys. By the time I was 10 years old (maybe earlier, my parents might remember) I had amassed a library that covered one entire wall of my bedroom. I noticed that as time has passed there are more demands on my attention and reading books has slowly fallen away. In fact in all of 2016 I did not read a single book! That needed to change. For 2017 I set what I thought at the time was an ambitious goal:

Read a minimum of two books per month; one for education and one for pleasure.

Once I got rolling I blew that goal right out of the water with 45 books!
I want to see if I can nearly double that number to 80 books in 2018.
January
– Piranha by Clive Cussler
– Millionaire Real Estate Investor by Gary Keller
– How’s your soul by Judah Smith
– American Assasin by Vince Flynn
February 
– Vision Blockers by dr Eric Scroggins
– Marine Diesel Mechanics by Nigel Calder
March
– Presidents Shadow by Brad Meltzer. Poorly written
– Emperors’ Revenge by Clive Cussler
– How to Win Friends and Influence People by Dale Carnegie
– The Book on Rental Property Investing by Brandon Turner
– Be a People Person by John C Maxwell
April
– Seven habits of highly effective people by Stephen Covey
– How to build a website by Greg Rickaby
– *Do not recall the title :(*
May
– Sea Trials by Wendy Hinman
– 4 Hour Work Week by Tim Ferris
– The Racing Rules of Sailing for 2017-2020
– Tightwads on the Loose by Wendy Hinman
June
– I would like to inform you that tomorrow we will die with our families
– 21 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership by John C Maxwell
July
– 21 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership by John C Maxwell *Yes I read it twice!
– JMT training materials
August
– JMT training materials
– 15 Laws of Growth by John C Maxwell
September
– 15 Laws of Growth
– JMT coach training resources
October
– Start with Why – Simon Sinek
– Good Leaders ask Great Questions – John Maxwell
– JMT Coach Training
– The White Mountains by John Christopher
– The City of Gold and Lead by John Christophero
– The Pool of Fire by John Christopher
November
– Extreme Ownership
– Structuring Zero Down Deals with Joe Crump. *Poorly written. Tries to write from the buyer and seller perspective at the same time. Only about lease to own contracts.
– The Bootstrap VA by Lisa Morosky
– 7 Years to 7 Figure Wealth by Brandon Turner
– Tarzan of the Apes by Edgar Rice Burroughs
– How to create your ultimate mastermind team by  Liz Seda & Scott insmore
– Return of Tarzan
– The beasts of Tarzan
December
– Put your dream to the test – John Maxwell
– Son of Tarzan
– The lean startup
– Acres of Diamonds by Russel Conwell
– The Personal MBA

2017 Year in Review

For several years I have made a resolution to create an intentionally slower life with more space in it. It is a resolution I have never kept. 2017 was no exception. 2017 has been packed so full of experiences that I have coined it as the year I packed 10 years of experiences into 1 year. It was exhausting and exhilarating at the same time, with several bucket list items and astounding personal growth happening.

When I looked back of the year I created a categorized, bulleted list of significant moments and achievements thinking it may be more digestible than writing everything out….the list is several pages long!The following is my attempt to summarize said list into easily digestible chunks.

How did I do on my 2017 goals?

I did not publish any 2017 goals, but I did write down and track them myself. Of the 15 goals I had I accomplished 7 of them, those 7 being the most important and the others being pushed out by life priority changes. Here are the goals I achieved.

Spend more quality time with Alix. Because she is was attending night classes as well as working nights time together was at a premium but we were able to make the most of the time we did have.

Learn better communication methods with Alix. Learning to communicate better with your spouse is a lifelong commitment to improvement. Alix and I have had several amazing breakthroughs in our marriage and communication this year. There is much room for improvement and I believe we have created the start of a solid foundation that will hold us through the future.

Help Alix build a successful business. Alix Lularoe business has come a long way since the beginning of the year. My “help” has mostly been through photographing her modeling outfits, which I am surprisingly good at. I have helped her brainstorm ideas for better customer engagement and setup for big events. Schoolwork has been the limiting factor in business growth. 2018 brings with it many great new growth opportunities.

Read two books per month, one educational and one fun. NAILED IT SO HARD! In January I read 4 books. The most books in one month was 8 in November, with an average of 4 per month. Because I was hitting my goal I picked up a Kindle (used, because I did not know if I would like it. I cannot recommend it enough!) which allowed me to accelerate my reading goal significantly.

Do another trip to Uganda. I joined the September medical trip. It was simply astounding. The clinic was able to serve 2,121 people from the Kampala slums in 4 days. At the orphanage/boarding school we supplied the new girls dorm with hundreds of mattresses, the younger girls with dresses, and the younger kids with two new pairs of shoes.

Become a leadership coach! This was the goal that popped up partway into the year. It excited and transformed my life, and is also the reason the other items on my goal list were deprioritized and bumped off.

Personal Growth

This is THE big one! Personal Growth consumed 2017 for me, with breaks to go sailing.

2016 was a bad year for me, personally and professionally. I tried to write a year in review post but I could not figure out how to do it without spewing massive amounts of negativity across the interwebs. I quite frankly hated my life. I had turned into an incredibly negative and bitter person, completely opposite of who I am.

I could not continue living that way, something had to change. After spending many hours in personal reflection I realized the root of the issue stemmed with who was leading my life. Instead of taking responsibility for my own growth and happiness I had handed it over to my employer. Not good. I had to get out of that rut and started the process by reading through a couple of the classic leadership and communication books. What I learned floored me. I knew to be happy and successful again I needed to take back control of my personal rowth and development. I had on ordered several more books and lectures on leadership and communication and then a conversation with my CEO confirmed to me that I was on the right track.

I will post more about this separately (eventually) but to keep things short, as I started growing I hungered for more and search out where I could get the best training. In my search I bumped into John Maxwell again. John Maxwell has influenced lives of leaders around the globe and is considered to be the world’s #1 expert on leadership and communication. In 2011 John Maxwell created a program to train and certify leadership and communication speakers, teachers, and coaches. I joined. John Maxwell’s Team has created an astounding amount of amazing training material. Several months ago I completed the John Maxwell Team Certification and enrolled in the advanced mentorship.

I have seen spectacular changes in my life, my marriage, and my team at work through implementing lessons in my life. I love love love helping people unlock their potential. I believe it is the calling on my life. Starting as a side project in 2018 I will be providing training and coaching services to companies and individuals. If you or your company are interested in a free training session please get ahold of me on the contact page!

Professional Update

As I mentioned in the personal growth section above, my work at WebDevStudios has really kicked up this year. I have aggressively implemented what I have learned and even started doing some internal training. I would like to see leadership development expanded to encompass the entire company in 2018.

Some quick stats:

  • My team touched 22 projects!!! That is a significant number My team is the best! I am incredibly proud of and honored to serve with them. The next closest team clocked in at 16 projects (I think), with 13 following on their heels.
  • I interview 5.5 people (That I remember, there may have been more! I read through dozens of applications).
  • Hired and trained 4 new team members.
  • Started doing internal leadership development.

Boating Update

Somehow in the midst of everything else I found time for boating activities. November 2016 I acquired part ownership of Billabong, a beautiful Lancer 36. She needed some serious work to be “ship-shape”. The first thing I did was to learn everything I could about diesel motors and pull Billabong’s motor and rebuild it with fellow Shilshole Bay Yacht Club member Harold Baldwin. It was a long, slow, rewarding process that I still have yet to document. 7 months from the time I took ownership the motor was back in the boat and she was ready to leave the slip for (my) first time.

We entered into the Ballard Cup races and I was able to take the existing race crew from a 5-6 place team immediately to a 3rd place team. By the end of the series we were handily in 1st. Not bad for never having piloted a boat in a race before! I credit it entirely to my racing mentor Joe Bozick..

In the freshly rebuild sailboat, Alix and I were able to do a few weekend cruises with the Shilshole Bay Yacht Club. They were a ton of fun and Alix is enjoying sailing much more now too. This summer we used the cruises as a shakedown of the boat and identified several key upgrades for the boat (such as fixing a rudder leak!).

Wrap Up

There is a ton more that I could write about but these cover the major highlights. 2018 will build upon the foundation of things that have happened in 2017 to propel Alix and I further and faster into our future. More to come on that soon!

How many Bens can you find?

Intensely colored sunset over Salmon Bay

2017 Liberty Bay July 3rd raft up

The July 3rd fireworks event in Liberty Bay is the single most looked forward to event of the year for me. Hundreds (maybe thousands) of boats descend on Liberty Bay for one of the better fireworks displays around. Boats come in groups and raft up (tie together) or singly.

This year I was excited to take Billabong over. In fact this was Billabong’s first cruise outing since I have owned her! My wife Alix had to work but another friend at our marina was coming later and offered to bring her over, so early Saturday morning I packed the dogs into the boat and we took off for Liberty Bay, Poulsbo.

Billabong motoring from Shilshole to Liberty Bay July 2017

The morning weather was a bit dreary, with no wind, but Bella and Mariah had a great time cruising over. Mariah piloted while Bella crewed and Martha dutifully followed along behind.

About 80% of the way to Agate Pass the newly rebuilt motor Harold and I had labored to rebuild sputtered and died. She had less than 5 hours on the rebuild! Luckily I had brought along my toolbox and along with my recently acquired knowledge felt confident I would figure out a resolution. When I popped open the engine hatch I found, to my horror, several inches of water in the bottom of the engine room! With no bilge pump in the engine room (to keep oil from going overboard) I was forced to manually bail the compartment.

Water filling the engine compartment, presumably from the rudder post

Unable to see any visual clue as to why the motor died I decided to bump the starter. To my surprise and delight the motor fired immediately with barely a bump of the starter. With the hatch still open I cautiously put the transmission in forward at idle. Everything seemed fine. Gave her some throttle and suddenly a fountain of water came flying up! Immediately killing the motor, I investigated. It turns out the oil absorbent pads I had placed under the motor had floated up when the compartment filled with water and wrapped themselves around the prop shaft. Once sufficiently twisted they had enough weight to cause the motor to sputter. Simple fix!!!

What about the water you may be asking? I had to manually pump out the compartment two other times. It looks to me as if the rudder post is leaking. I have yet to confirm that suspicion 100% but whenever the rudder is used hard a larger volume of water seems to come through.

Enough of the depressing stuff! After anchoring in Liberty Bay I set about rigging up Martha the Minto while Bella took a nap in the cabin.

And then….you guessed it, we went sailing in Martha!

Sailing Martha the Minto in Liberty Bay. Doesn’t Bella look thrilled?

Billabong looked good hanging in Liberty Bay.

Harold, Jessie, and Amanda arrived a couple hours later on Michief Maker, an Ericson 38. Jessie approves of Billabong.

We went into Poulsbo and of course Harold and I shared a round of brew.

The following morning Alix arrived via friend Kemp’s trawler. Alix had never been to Poulsbo so we went in and explored the town.

I did not get many pictures during the event. You can look at past Liberty Bay July 3rd events to see fireworks. I very much enjoy spending time with the people of Shilshole Bay Yacht Club. Super fun people who just love getting out on and enjoying their boats with others.

Alix and I had a great sail back to Shilshole Marina on July 4th. Alix even tried her hand at helming and was telling me how to sail before we got back! Our first docking together was flawless. Alix stepped off the boat and tied us to the dock like she had been doing it for years.

Another year and another Liberty Bay event down. I am looking forward to next year already!

 

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