Ali Jafarian
Ali Jafarian

2023 was another amazing year!

The Jafarian family chose challenge as our word for the year and we tested ourselves in new ways. We also mixed in a bit of adventure, movement and change.

Here’s the recap –


Let’s kick things off with a family update!


My son, Everest, is turning 8 and he’s all about sports. He started the Spring playing on his first soccer team, which I coached and enjoyed. Now he’s more recently become passionate about football, from his awesome “make believe” game scenarios to knowing all the NFL standings.

Some of Everest’s 2023 highlights include:

  • Played Spring soccer
  • Joined a flag football team
  • Reading full books
  • Growing his pokemon card collection
  • Making morning shakes
Everest’s 7U soccer team – The Blue Knights

Sports were a huge part of my life growing up, so it’s fun and nostalgic to experience them with Everest.


My daughter, Sepia, is turning 6 this year and maturing faster than I’d like. She started kindergarten this year which was incredibly hard for me. However, she’s enjoying school, learning new things, and making some new friends along the way. She’s also flexing her creativity in different ways with crafts, photography and music.

Some of Sepia’s 2023 highlights include:

  • Started kindergarten
  • Still creating massive amounts of art (daily)
  • Tried gymnastics for 3 weeks
  • Taking interest in photography and the piano
  • Loves exploring the outdoors

Sepia continues to embody the essence of showing up authentically.


My wife and life partner made some big moves in 2023. She continues to prioritize family, teach at the pre-school and keep our home in prime shape. However, she did some things to prioritize herself and step outside of her comfort zone this year.

Some of Gabrielle’s 2023 highlights include:

  • Epic solo trip to Africa (vegan retreat)
  • Attended Companion Camp couples retreat with me
  • Surprised her mom with an awesome 70th birthday video
  • Completed a 12-hour walk (inspired by The 12 Hour Walk book / movement)
  • Started Burn Bootcamp

Gabrielle really [challenged] herself in new ways this year. Her trip to Africa was the first major solo trip she’d taken since being a teenager. Attending Companion Camp with me was the first personal growth retreat she’d ever experienced. And her 12-hour walk was an extremely challenging, but rewarding, experience that helped her grow in new ways.

I’m inspired to continue doing life with her.


Big Rez is still enjoying his European lifestyle in Deutschland (Germany). We got to see his home and spend time with him in June, which was a blast. He also made a couple visits to the states this year, as usual, for some time with us in Denver.


My mom is doing well and continuing to spend time with us every week. She had some time with her siblings this year in Washington for my cousin Haley’s wedding (more on that below). She also took an awesome trip to see my brother this year… which leads to the biggest news in the Jafarian family.


Amir is still living in China with his wife, Viola, and 5 cats. However, there is a new addition to the family that doesn’t have claws or whiskers. They welcomed a beautiful baby girl named Azita into the world on August 11, 2023. Our hearts are full with all the joy and energy she brings, even though I’ve only gotten pics and FaceTime exposure.

Azita Jafarian!

We are VERY excited to meet Azita in person in 2024! 👶


In 2022 we lost our beloved Raja, which was very heavy for us. This year we honored her spirit by adopting a new puppy named Raya. She has some wildly similar characteristics while still being unique in her own way. Raya is also a shepherd mix like Raja. She’s just way more wild! 🐾

Raya has already experienced her first snowfall, hike, and daily encounters with violating Rudy’s personal space. Overall, she has created a lot of chaos, joy and love in our lives.

Friends & Family

We had a lot of time with friends and family this year! Below are some various people that we were blessed to share experiences with.

We had a great time with all our STL people in October where a bunch of friends showed up to hang with us. Here’s a fun group shot of that evening.

The STL crew!


Our garden took a back seat to travel this year. We still planted the normal mix of vegetables, but our yield was much lower, even with massive amounts of rain this season. This was a result of all our travel and time away from our home in the summer. I learned an important lesson that gardens simply love. You cannot expect plants to grow without resources and attention.

That said, we grew some cool carrots and other things that were fun to harvest. Most importantly, Sepia and I spent a lot of quality time together preparing and tending to the garden. That’s my favorite part of home gardening – being in the dirt with my daughter. 🧑‍🌾

Here’s what we grew:

  • Carrots
  • Beets
  • Tomatoes
  • Zucchini (green and gold)
  • Kale
  • Lettuce
  • Peppers
  • Jalapenos
  • Onions
  • Eggplant


Travel was big for the Jafarian’s in 2023, similar to 2022, but with more focus on family and friends. We feel blessed to share a bunch of experiences with loved ones. Here’s a recap of our trips and experiences.

Disney Land

We kicked the year off with a surprise trip to California (Disney Land) for Everest’s birthday! It was a magical way to celebrate Everest and spend time by the ocean.

We also learned some cool things about our family and such experiences. For example:

  • Our kids don’t quite love rides and roller coasters just yet. In fact, they are much more interested in the toys and memorabilia.
  • Dad (me) still dislikes crowds and long lines. I don’t think I’ll ever be able to fully surrender to this!
  • We all feel more at home on the beach than an amusement park.

Aside from the Disney experience, we stayed in Laguna Beach and really enjoyed the environment. The Jafarian’s are keen to find more time by the ocean as we map our plans for 2024.


Gabrielle took a solo trip to South Africa in March for an exclusive vegan retreat. I gifted her this retreat for her birthday because I knew she would never consider it for herself. She had an amazing time seeing wildlife that you typically see on National Geographic documentaries.

She also came home a bit different. I sensed a change in her that sparked one of her gifts – presence with animals. I believe she’s designed to make an impact on our planet in some way, but we’ll see what she chooses to do from here. 🌍

Breckenridge, CO

Later in March we hosted my brother and dad for some time in Breck. We also enjoyed the presence of the brothers Leopold, which always adds flavor to an experience! We got some time in on the slopes, including a heroic Sepia rescue by Amir, and of course, time in the hot tubs. There’s nothing better than drinking a Colorado IPA in an outdoor hot tub after a long day of snowboarding.

Breck is where Gabrielle and I got married, and we’ve had many adventures there, so it’s always nice to share that environment with loved ones.


In April I went to Ireland for a BraveCoach retreat. This is a small coaching community I’m a part of, led by Philip McKernan, that supports my work in SPACE and personal growth coaching.

Philip and the BraveCoach community continue to inspire me. I feel blessed to be part of their world. Ireland has also become a special place for me to visit. I enjoy the people, the countryside, the small towns, and the overall energy of the country. I feel very connected to Ireland in a way that’s different from my connection to home in the United States.

Park City, UT

In May I headed to Park City, Utah, for a FRD retreat. We stayed in the resort area and did our usual VIP retreat experience. I say “usual” because these retreats are just a part of my normal routine now. I show up, connect with friends, and invest further into my role as an intentional father. We also had some nice time outdoors with beautiful Utah weather.

We had the opportunity to meet Pedram Shojai, a fellow Iranian and awesome human. I connected with him after the retreat and recorded a podcast about Energy, Power and Vitality:

Energy, Power and Vitality with Pedram Shojai


In June we took a 3-week family adventure to Europe. This was certainly one of the main highlights of our year. We experienced 4 countries, every kind of transportation, amazing time in nature, plus lots of time with family and friends. And we did it all with a 5 and 7 year old who got to see the world. It was epic.

I crafted an entire blog post [and podcast] to recap the experience:

Jafarian Adventure: Europe (2023)

Here are some of my favorites pics –

I love Europe. It offers a lot of diversity and culture that simply doesn’t exist in the US. That said, I love to visit Europe. The US is still my country of choice for residency.

Colorado FRD Retreat

In July I lead a Front Row Dads retreat with my buddy Chris Emick out here in Colorado. We hosted 8 other men and gave them a backcountry experience in the Rocky mountains. This included a group cold plunge in Lake Dillon, time off grid in the 10th mountain division hut, climbing a 13er (13,000 ft tall mountain), hiking, fishing and lots of meaningful men’s work.

This event was special on many levels. Some of the reasons being:

  • It was the first retreat I designed, with Chris, as a retreat guide and leader.
  • The 8 men that showed up were the perfect group to co-create the experience we had. I will always cherish the time I had with these specific men.
  • We had some profound moments and adventures that only nature could help curate.

This retreat [challenged] me to step outside of my comfort zone of attending retreats, and step into new territory of designing / leading them. The challenge was humbling and rewarding in many ways, and as a result, I will be leading more retreats through SPACE in 2024. So head over there if you’re interested in attending one.


While I hosted my retreat, Gabrielle and the kiddos went to Florida to celebrate my mother-in-law’s 70th birthday. Cindy might be 70 years old but she lives like a 20 year old! I say this to compliment her free spirit of “staying young” and soaking up everything life has to offer, including the Florida sun.

I was sad to miss this experience but my role in the Colorado retreat was planned beforehand, and as we say in the Jafarian clan, we honor our commitments.

New Hampshire

In August I took a fun canoe trip to New Hampshire with 5 FRD buddies – Phillip, Jason, PJ, Doug and Josh. We did all the things guys can do in nature – hiking, fishing, tents, deep connection around the fire, plus some deep laughter jokin’ around. We also experienced some time in Boston, including a Red Sox game, which was great. It was a blast.

I can’t emphasize how important these camping trips are for my soul. I love these men as brothers, but in addition, I NEED time away in nature. There is something magical and therapeutic about camping, canoeing, and having real discussions around a fire that you simply cannot replicate in the “modern” day environment we live in.  🏕️

This is why I’m inspired to create SPACE retreats with similar activities and intentions, which I’ll elaborate on in the “Business” section below.


In September we flew out to Seattle to attend my cousin Haley’s wedding. It was great to celebrate them and spend time with my mom’s side of the family. We had some great conversation, laughs, time on the dance floor, and of course, a couple awesome hikes. We also got to spend some time with my buddy, Ryan Casey, and his family in Olympia.

I’m falling in love with the PNW for it’s variety of climate and nature. It offers some diversity from the dry mountain climate of Colorado. The Jafarian’s will continue to spend time in this part of the country.

Companion Camp

In October Gabrielle and I went to Dixon, Illinois to attend Companion Camp. This is a couples retreat led my good friend, Kelly Flanagan. He’s a master of his craft in helping couples, and individuals, experience greater alignment with themselves and their loved ones. It was an extraordinary group with lots of insights and learnings.

This was definitely an experience that pushed Gabrielle out of her comfort zone. I am used to retreats like this, with powerful questions to face, but she was a little caught off guard. That said, she showed up for me and herself amidst all the fear. I couldn’t be more blessed and grateful to have a life companion like Gabrielle. ❤️

A special thanks to Kelly and everyone else that showed up to make Companion Camp special.

San Diego

In November Gabrielle headed to San Diego with her best friend, Heather. They had time on the beach, great meals, took surf lessons, and spent some quality time together with no [family] demands.

I think moms need more time like this. If you’re a mom and you agree, please send your husband my way and I’ll be happy to make your case. 😉

FRD Live

In December I took my last trip of the year back to Austin, TX, for Front Row Dads Live. This was the 2nd annual FRD Live event. The 2022 version was extraordinary, so this event had a high bar to meet. The FRD team delivered and created another powerful experience for 130+ intentional fathers.

In addition, I had the unique honor of being one of the guest speakers! I gave a talk on emotional intelligence which included some of my tools and lessons from conscious leadership. I also shared some “real” moments as a father that I’ve experienced through cultivating a home that practices emotional intelligence.

Again, this experience [challenged] me to step out of my normal comfort zone by speaking, which I never do. It’s much easier for me to stay behind the scenes where I can observe and analyze. The challenge ended up being such a gift and something I’ll never forget. I’m still experiencing gratitude in different ways. Special thanks to Jon and the FRD team for inviting me to contribute.

And the icing on the cake – I got to experience it with my nephew-in-law, Chase! He’s a new father and I’m blown away by his courage to step into an event like this and show up with an open heart. Chase represents the new era of young fathers who will make choices to show up intentionally for their families.

I feel so blessed and honored to be a Front Row Dad. This community is changing lives and impacting our future world. I truly believe that. So I’m going to continue talking, blogging, and podcasting about it until I believe otherwise.

As usual, if you’re a dad that wants details just hit me up!

Hiking / Nature

If you know anything about the Jafarian’s is that we LOVE to hike. We’re just better when we’re outdoors, which is why nature is one of our family values.

We created more hiking memories in 2023 as Everest and Sepia increased their stamina. We can do 3-5 hour family hikes now, which is awesome. We also expanded our hiking footprint to a new continent this year, with several hikes in Norway, Italy and Greece.

And for the record, Everest and Sepia upgraded from junior hikers to senior hikers this year! We have a family hiking classification system, which includes:

  1. Junior hiker = 10 hikes
  2. Senior hiker = 25 hikes
  3. Master hiker = 50 hikes
  4. Sherpa = 100 hikes + 1 summit above 14,000 feet
  5. Mountain Goat = 150 hikes + 5 summits above 14,000 feet
  6. Yeti = 300 hikes + 3 summits above 20,000 feet

*I’m actively pursuing the Yeti status!


Mountains continue to play a symbolic role in my life. I climbed several new mountains this year in two continents! Gabrielle joined me for Mt. Seceda in the Italian Dolomites, which was by far the most exotic mountain I’ve climbed to date.

I’m also planning a couple “summit” retreats in 2024 with both FRD and SPACE, which will include some mountain adventures. 🏔️


Business was [challenging] for me in 2023. I found myself in a transition phase of letting go of familiar work and identity, while stepping into new projects and territory. Here’s the recap:

  • MemberDev continues to serve coaches, masterminds and educators with conscious technology to build online communities. We’re grateful to work with some extraordinary clients. It’s the kind of business that I will continue working on, but in limited capacity, since I know my potential to help humanity is being called in a different way. MemberDev will continue to operate and serve its clients but I’m intentionally shifting more of my focus and energy to SPACE.
  • SPACE is my new calling. This is the business I created in 2022 for coaching, the podcast, retreats and helping people realize their most authentic life. I experimented with different things in 2023 and my future intentions have become clear. It’s time for me to fully embody what SPACE can become so I can help people wake up. This might sound a little “woo” and esoteric, but it’s a very real mission that I feel inspired to pursue. Stay tuned for more content and events in 2024.
  • The Dreams Vault is a new project I launched with my buddy, Dane Espegard. I’ve partnered with Dane to create a web platform that supports concepts from his book and workshops around the power of dreams. This relates to aspirational dreams, not bedtime dreams, just to be clear. It’s an inspiring project that gives me energy as a technologist to create healthy impact in peoples’ lives.

My relationship to business evolved this year. I’m now focused on a few key things:

  1. Working with people and projects that give me energy.
  2. Honoring my integrity in why I work, how I work, and when I work.
  3. Letting go of things that no longer serve me.

#3 Has been particularly challenging. I’ve found that the world will create work for you if you don’t choose what you work on. People will praise you for what you’re good at, and keep you away from your zone of genius. Money and status will blind you if you’re not clear on your priorities.

It takes real courage to let go of things, face uncertainty, and step into work that lights you up.


I still produce my podcast while continuing to learn and grow from it. My production schedule has slowed down a bit due to other projects, but I’m completely okay with that. I don’t need to publish every week like most people. In fact, I will record and publish when I feel inspired to have a conversation or share an important message.

I passed the 2 year mark in 2023 and shared some insights around that milestone:

Reflecting on 2 Years of Podcasting

Personal Development

Finally, let’s end with personal development. My relationship to personal development continued to expand in 2023. The expansion was different this year. It felt unique from previous years in terms of how I want to show up.

Be Here Now

I’ve realized new levels of awareness and presence. This relates to a more conscious way of being. A deeper level of being that reflects surrender, acceptance and fully immersing yourself in the moment.

I’ve become very aligned with the quote “Be Here Now.” Below is a tattoo I got in December to symbolize the importance of these words in my life.

As a result of that, I’ve been responding to what life is calling me into. As my buddy Tucker Max shared, life will send you signals… but it’s up to you to answer the call. I’m clear that part of my path is to help others realize more consciousness.

Or, to simply help them find “space” in their lives to be more present and aware. 🙂

Less Input –> More Courage

I also drastically reduced my input in 2023. In other words, I read less books and listened to less podcasts than previous years. My inner guidance is clear on what I need to do, which means less input and more courage. This relates to following your instincts and internal voice, whatever you label that (God, the Universe, etc.), instead of following the path and voice of everybody else.

That said, I still open a new book or podcast when life presents a meaningful sign.


I continue to invest into Front Row Dads as my primary community. This tribe of fathers is growing and creating powerful impact in the world. I’ve considered joining a few other communities, but I’ve realized that I only have so much time and energy to invest into community groups and masterminds. If you haven’t noticed by now, I enjoy my space 🙂

So for now, I’m going to continue investing into FRD and fathers who want to show up more intentionally.


2023 was an impactful year for me and my family. It was certainly a year of challenge, but with lots of rewards and surprises. I feel like we found clarity from different experiences to help us catalyze some big things in 2024.

As I embrace 2024 here’s what feels most true for me:


I’m currently focused on taking ACTION. That’s the word Gabrielle and I chose for 2024. My normal way of being is to sit with things, process slowly, and wait to be asked. So I’m challenging myself in 2024 to drive things forward with more speed and intention while still honoring my integrity. I’m planning to test a more proactive approach to life.


I’m paying attention to how important our environment is to our quality of life and overall wellbeing. This includes micro environments like where we work, where we eat, where we shower, etc. It also includes macro environments like where we live and where we travel. Gabrielle and I are focused on reshaping our environment in 2024.

Self Love

Finally, I’m finding my way back to self love.

We live in a current world that’s full of prescriptions, distractions and fear. Modern culture makes it so easy to stay “connected” and stimulated in unhealthy ways. There’s a quick fix or system for everything today. It’s easy to hide, fall asleeep, and get caught up in the status games everyone else is playing.

As a result, most of us have fallen out of alignment with the real human experience. We’ve lost touch with our inner child. We’re navigating life on autopilot with no true agency or integrity.

Most of us have simply forgotten how to love ourselves.

I believe this lack of self love is what causes so much stress and anxiety in the world. I believe the world needs more space created to help people show up authentically. And I intend to do just that. I’m determined to help people wake up and find their way back to self love.

If you’re with me, stay tuned for more in 2024!

Thank you, 2023, for all the experiences. 🙏

Ali Jafarian

Ali is a father, husband and serial entrepreneur with a deep drive to create. He writes, records, codes and builds things to inspire the artist in all of us.

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