Discover more from Year Of The Opposite - Travis Stoliker's Substack
Introduction to The Year Of The Opposite. What is The Year Of The Opposite? What have I achieved in my Year Of The Opposite?
How the Year Of The Opposite Started, what are the results, and could it be right for you?
This is your starting guide to The Year Of The Opposite. Let’s start with some links that will help you learn more about this project/newsletter and dive into the content:
What Is the Year Of The Opposite?
The Year of the Opposite is a blog and podcast where I share my personal journey of transformation in the face of overwhelming grief and depression. At the age of 41, I lost three close friends within just five months, which sent me spiraling into a deep depression. Despite my somewhat successful career and seemingly great life, I struggled to find purpose and happiness.
Inspired by Admiral William H. McRaven's commencement speech and the Seinfeld episode, "The Opposite," I decided to make small changes in my life, starting with waking up early and making my bed every day.
This small change snowballed into my decision to embrace a "year of the opposite," challenging myself to step out of my comfort zone and do the opposite of what I had done before. I started with the simple act of waking up early and making my bed, but I enjoyed it so much I kept challenging myself with new interesting challenges that were the opposite of what I had traditionally done in my life.
The results were astounding and they happened very quickly.
Through this journey, I overcame depression, became a better father & husband, transformed my health, fixed all my lifestyle induced ailments, and discovered newfound confidence and purpose. On this newsletter & podcast I share how I did it and provide resources so that you can too.
Why should you subscribe to Year Of The Opposite?
It’s free and you’ll put a huge smile on my face. :)
You’ll get practical tips that are simple to improve your life, lose weight, live longer, and be happier.
I’ll share positive stories about the world that the news/media ignores. “If you pay attention to the news you’d think the world is getting worse. If you study history, you know the world is getting better.”
If you enjoy it, I hope you’ll support my endeavor by voluntarily becoming a paid subscriber. It means the world to me and it keeps me going.
Travis Stoliker’s Year Of The Opposite Achievements
Improve my health: After the sale of Liquid Web, my poor lifestyle choices resulted in my health to deteriorate. I vowed to Resolve all my medical conditions in my Year Of The Opposite (YOTO).
Lost 62lbs (37lbs since start of YOTO) - Updated 9/11/2023
Cured Hyperlipidemia (high cholesterol)
Cured Hypertriglyceridemia (high triglycerides)
Cured Impaired fasting glucose
Mental Clarity & Discipline: After the sale of Liquid Web and a substantial financial windfall, I became undisciplined and neglected my health. I ballooned to nearly 270lbs and acquired a bunch of diseases caused by my lifestyle.
Exercise & Challenge my Body: Exercise is the best medicine for physical health, mental health, & longevity in my book. I set out to become a healthy person.
I became a runner. I Ran 1,000 miles in 365 days
Learned how to hold my breath for 2:46.
Swam ~1 mile across a lake
Regular sauna use
5 Pull Ups Unassisted
20 mile bike ride
Repair neglected physical image: After the sale of Liquid Web I adopted a slovenly image refusing to shave, comb my hair, and I regularly wore sweatsuits. In my YOTO, I improved my image.
Dress better & do hair.
Wear a mustache
Take up new hobbies: For most of my life I neglected hobbies and focused too much on work. In my year of the opposite, I changed that.
Nutrition: My diet was horrendous and I was a very picky eater. I would regularly consume 50oz of soda, ice cream, and beer. In my YOTO, I fixed my diet and broadened my horizons to try any food I was offered. I also had a very low tolerance for spicy food, so I set out to change that.
Be more social & be more active in community: The only thing I hated more than meetings was “networking”. So in my YOTO, I decided to be more social and active in the community.
Join the Lansing Rotary and become a Rotarian
Join Ele’s Place Board
Scheduled meetings every week
Went to our family cabin more frequently
Made a rule to “Say YES” to almost all invitations
Provided thousands of Free Meals to students during the pandemic.
Paid off the student lunch debt and library debt at multiple school districts.
Help the victims of fires, tornadoes, and floods.
Rescued local businesses that were in jeopardy of going out of business during the pandemic.
Spiritual Exploration: I was raised Catholic but became an atheist around the age of 12. As a part of my YOTO I explored religion and began attending church.
Attended church (almost) weekly
Attended a Jewish Synagogue
Before & After Pictures & Videos
Podcasts & Video Interviews
The Year Of The Opposite also contains video & audio interviews with people that I find fascinating. Here are some of the interviews on the podcast.
Podcast Interview with Michelle Rogers - Surviving the Unthinkable: Michelle Rogers on Matthew Terry's Brutality and the Deadly Consequences of His Early Release. My former co-worker, Matthew Terry, stabbed her 7 times yet somehow Michigan let him out of prison after only 3 years. Tragically, within 5 months of his release, he killed his new girlfriend.