2016: The Best Year of My Life

I know I say this every year, but 2016 was the best year of my life!

So much good has happened and I'm one step closer to being the best version of me.

Like last year, I want to recapitulate briefly what has happened in my life.

This post will be little "braggy" as usual, so if you're an envious piece of shit and don't like others having a good life, I recommend you to stop reading right here!

Earning Money Doing "Nothing"

I never liked the idea of slaving for money.

When I met Erik last year in Thailand I was very motivated when he told me about his growing affiliate marketing business.

I was playing around with different networks and products but most of it didn't work for me. I chose my own path and started selling products I had a lot of experience with.

In 2015 I was heavily promoting my post on how to make over 50% profit per year.

I got almost hundred referrals which are making me money ever since. And I'm talking about "big" money that covers all my costs and also grow my savings.

Then I found a promotion on Airbnb which allowed me to get $40 instead of $20 (case study) for each referral I brought in.

It covered all my costs while traveling Asia and I still have some free credit left to use in 2017.

Also, as I predicted, Bitcoin was bullish in 2016. I'm a long term holder and that itself raised the value of my assets several times.

Kaohsiung Beach Became my Second Home

Because of my passive incomes, I have free time to do what I love.

One of the greatest pleasure of mine is being near water.

In our new #beach #house #selfie #kaohsiung #taiwan #asia

A photo posted by Mario Dian (@mariodian) on

I spent around 6 months on the beach relaxing, having fun and thinking about my life.

Apart from "boring" things like swimming in the sea every day we were busy building a bamboo house.

It was a great shelter from the sun and also an amazing place to sleep in.

Until cops destroyed it and we were forced to build another one, out of the sight of others.

I bought a Motorcycle

I loved 2 wheels since the very young age.

I spent my childhood on a bicycle riding it every single day regardless of the weather. I did stunts, hurt myself countless times, traveled places...

But bringing my bicycle from Slovakia to Taiwan would be too costly so I bought a motorcycle.

I was very lucky to meet this guy with an off-road bike that was leaving Taiwan and had no use for it anymore.

Got it from him for a good price and been riding it almost daily just for the sake of riding.

The freedom you get riding is priceless!

Quit the Heavy Drinking

I was an alcoholic for about a decade and it fucked my body and health very much.

I knew I had to stop so I did. Just like with cigarettes.

At first, I stopped completely for about 3 months but then I realized 1 beer a week won't harm me.

Apart from visiting Slovakia this October where I HAD to drink otherwise, nobody would talk to me, I'm doing a pretty good job sticking to my "rules".

It feels great to be sober and to have a clear mind... tt also fucks up your sleep cycle tremendously!

Hammock Cured my Insomnia

Speaking of sleeping, I've had a very bad sleep since I moved to Taiwan and was struggling with it for 2 years.

I tried all kinds of tricks but I couldn't fall asleep unless I was drunk.

One day I read an article about why sleeping in a hammock is good for you.

Without much thinking, I bought this amazing Mayan hammock made by local artisans in Mexico.

Immediately after the first night, I've seen lots of improvements.

Instead of falling asleep at 7-8am it took only around 1-2 hours and now I fall asleep within 10 minutes.


I'm still without an ARC thus nothing changed about my forced traveling. I have to get out of Taiwan every 3 months to extend my stay.

It gives me option to visit new places and experience new cultures.


I've been to China 3 times this year because my girlfriend lives in Shanghai.

I wasn't a big fan of Beijing in 2013 but I must say Shanghai is an amazing city.

#Shanghai #skyline from the #Bund. #travel to #china

A photo posted by Mario Dian (@mariodian) on

It features the best from both worlds - China and the west.

So we're walking down the streets of Shanghai and suddenly stumbled upon this cool "rock building".

A photo posted by Mario Dian (@mariodian) on

Despite the city being enormously rich, you still get to experience the poor side of China which I find very fascinating.

I always admired Asian (and Chinese in particular) way of getting by. Instead of relying on the government, these people work their asses off to make it through the day.

The one thing that stuck in my mind particularly was a very young and poor couple with a simple kitchen on their old rusty bicycle selling noodles on the street.

I'm not even exaggerating to say they cooked the best noodles I've had!

When it comes to food in Shanghai, you get a huge variety of dishes from every province.

I especially enjoyed halal food from west Chinese provinces and all kinds of spicy dishes from Sichuan.

This hot pot and especially the fish noodles below were unlike anything other I've ever had. The spiciness level is ridiculous but they somehow manage to preserve the flavor of other ingredients.

Apart from Shanghai I also visited Suzhou - just an hour ride by high-speed rail.

This city is also called Venice of Asia and for a good reason.

Little Venice-like canal in #Suzhou #China

A photo posted by Mario Dian (@mariodian) on

Similarly to Venice in Italy, it has many canals and small alleyways but unlike Venice, it doesn't smell like sewage. Props to you Suzhou!

The one thing I especially liked about the city is its historical buildings and tons of parks.

Lion Grove #Garden #Suzhou #China

A photo posted by Mario Dian (@mariodian) on

And of course the food!

#dinner with my bb #suzhou #china #food

A photo posted by Mario Dian (@mariodian) on

This, a bit spicy dish, is similar to a hot pot you can get all over Asia but it's less soupy and way tastier.

I shit you not, this is easily my all time favorite Asian dish.

In spite of all the shit talk about China, I kind of like their way of doing things. It's a very interesting culture and unlike anything you've seen before.

The culture shock guaranteed.

Busan, South Korea

I liked Korea ever since I went there in 2014. But this time I headed to Busan - the second largest city.

Coincidently, I met my Slovak friends Peter and his girlfriend Lenka so it made my trip so much better.

Busan to me is one of the best looking Asian cities because of the steep mountains, tall buildings and nice city beach overlooking a colorful bridge at night.

#busan #beach almost #sunny #day #southkorea #korea #asia #travel

A photo posted by Mario Dian (@mariodian) on


#busan at #evening. #beach #southkorea #korea #asia #travel

A photo posted by Mario Dian (@mariodian) on

It reminds me of Hong Kong a bit but it's not that cramped, crowded and old looking.

#busan #night #nightsky #river #southkorea #korea #asia #travel #nofilter

A photo posted by Mario Dian (@mariodian) on

The surrounding area is a paradise for nature lovers like me.

#sunset #island #ships #yeongdo #taejongdae #busan #southkorea #korea #asia #travel #mayfair #filter

A photo posted by Mario Dian (@mariodian) on


A #turtle #statue at #Beomeosa #temple in #Busan. #southkorea #korea #asia #travel #mayfair #filter

A photo posted by Mario Dian (@mariodian) on


#buddhist #temple #busan #southkorea #korea #asia #travel #travelgram #latergram #mayfair #filter

A photo posted by Mario Dian (@mariodian) on

Just a short bus ride out of the city and you end up in a village also know as Santorini of Korea with tons of colorful houses on a hill.

It's a bit touristy but great nonetheless.

#santori of #east #busan #southkorea #korea #asia #travel #nofilter

A photo posted by Mario Dian (@mariodian) on

I had a great time in Busan.

So much that I'm considering moving there one day!

Hong Kong & Macau

I go to Hong Kong every year but this year I also added Macau to my itinerary.

This former Portuguese colony is a beautiful mix of Chinese and European culture.

#ruins of #st #paul's in #macau

A photo posted by Mario Dian (@mariodian) on


#grand #lisboa and some other #fancy #buildings in #macau

A photo posted by Mario Dian (@mariodian) on


#beautiful #fountain #light #show at #wynn #macau

A video posted by Mario Dian (@mariodian) on


I also went to visit my family and friends to Slovakia.

I can't imagine living there ever again but I had a great time and amazing food!

Back in Slovakia.

A photo posted by Mario Dian (@mariodian) on

Slovakia's countryside.

A photo posted by Mario Dian (@mariodian) on

Some "healthy" dinner for tonight.

A photo posted by Mario Dian (@mariodian) on

A hungarian dish called "szegedin". I was waiting for this for 2 years.

A photo posted by Mario Dian (@mariodian) on

I Became a Small Venture Capitalist

As I mentioned before I hate working. It makes more sense to me to invest unused money so they generate more money.

Back in Slovakia, I spend a lot of time with my good friend Martin and after seeing his dedication I invested some money in his company Bambooska.

Like me, Martin is a big nature lover so he decided to bring nature closer to people.

He sells organic bamboo products such as toothbrushes (those are also fully biodegradable), hair brushes, watches, sunglasses and more.

It's too early to evaluate the success of the investment, but so far he's been doing great.

Bambooska on Facebook Bambooska on Instagram

Found my Passion in Bitcoin

Actually, it's something I've been doing and kept talking about for past 3 years.

Bitcoin, decentralized systems cryptography and ways to use these technologies against governments fascinate me a lot.

My $99 #trezor #bitcoin #hardware #wallet that could have prevented $70 000 000 #bitfinex #hack

A photo posted by Mario Dian (@mariodian) on

I learn new things in these fields every day and I want to pass my knowledge onto people craving for freedom.

That's how Freedom Node was born.

Along with the blog full of useful information, I help people to get on board with Bitcoin and help them with any problems they may experience on this journey.

I'm working hard towards my goals and I hope to make my passion into a Bitcoin consulting business starting next year.

That's why this blog didn't get enough attention lately.

I want to rebuild it to something more niche specific in the future because writing about Bitcoin, traveling and freedom is too broad.

Final Thoughts

Since I quit my full-time job in 2014 my life has changed tremendously. Every year was better than the previous one and I believe 2017 will be no different.

I found happiness within myself which allows me to create the life I always wanted. However, it's not always just nice and dandy.

The year 2016, like every other year, was full of fails.

I shut down HotPotMama and didn't finish many projects I worked on for months. I also crashed my motorcycle because of my stupidity and hurt myself.

But I believe these falls are a natural process of shaping who you are so I never let them make myself miserable.

Thank you so much for your attention these past 2 years.

I hope you accomplished everything you dreamed of and I wish you an amazing 2017 with even more fulfilled dreams!

P.S. I'd like to hear from you about your accomplishments and fails too. Let me know in the comments below.

If you like my post, don't forget to share it with your followers.

You can also support me by donating some bitcoin or moneroj. Thank you!

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What do you think?

Do you hate your 9-5 job?

No wonder! I was once a corporate slave myself. Demotivated, unhappy and on the path to self-destruction. But then something changed and I managed to escape the rat race.


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