It’s that time of the year where we get the opportunity to reflect and be grateful for the year we’ve had. I’m not going to go into one of those 2020 rants, but I’ll call it like it was. 2020 was a very rough and pretty difficult year. In spite of everything, there have been many things to be grateful for and many lessons to take away into the new year. It’s my pleasure to share them with you.
2020 Resolution & Review
The goal I set for 2020 was the phrase: Focus + Depth.
I set out to achieve 2 main goals:
- To pursue technical excellence in my craft and line of work.
- To take care of the mind-body combination; my core tools.
Overall, the results this year were great. Let’s dive right in….
Goal #1: Technical Craft
I think I did a terrific job. I decided early on in the year to develop my skill sets through the pursuit of technical certifications that I could apply directly in my work and team. The results for the year were great. Among the highlights were:
- 10x Salesforce Certifications | Application Architect
- 2x Scrum Certifications | PSM I & PSPO I
- 2x Shopify Certifications
- 1x MITx Micromaster in Supply Chain Management
- 1x ITIL® 4 Certification
- 1x Lean Certification
Most importantly, I completed the MITx Micromaster in Supply Chain Management; an endeavour I had started in 2017, and was quite frankly terrified of trying to finish. I had only an exam left and hadn’t reviewed the material in over 2 years. But I mustered up the courage to face the final exam and was able to complete it successfully.
Goal #2: Mind-Body
This COVID year was rough. It really put a strain on anxiety, patience, going outdoors. Halfway throughout the year I made it a personal goal to beat stress and win the emotional war on COVID and the results were great. Among the highlights for the year were:
- + 13,300 pushups
- + 305 days of Intermittent Fasting
- + 146 workouts (2.5x what I did in 2019)
- – 40% alcohol consumption (from 792 in 2019 to 483 in 2020)
- – 25 pounds/weight
- – 3% body fat
I have to be honest, my health peak was around September; but I feel the healthiest I have felt in years. Overall, I am very happy with the results for the year and plan to keep it up in 2021.
Drumroll for some of the top highlights for the year…
- Finishing the MITx Micromaster in Supply Chain Management.
- Turning my building’s roof into a Sunset Skip Rope Gym.
- Moving into and a new apartment with Vickie.
- Reconnecting with old friends over video calls to catch up.
- Spending a full day with my nephew for his birthday! (#NoParentsAllowed)
And if I had to pick a personal best, it would be spending loads of time at home with Vickie and all of the fuzzies.
Some other tallies of 2020…
- 483 Drinks enjoyed over 183 drink-sessions.
- 366 Gratitude Journal Entries
- 332 Blue Mind days (Calm and Peace)
- 324 days of push ups for a total of 13,300 reps
- 305 Intermittent Fasting days
- 239 Listen > Talk days
- 148 Movies watched
- 146 Workouts
- 134 Dates with Vickie
- 97 Hangouts with friends
- 91 Piano Sessions for a total of 547 minutes played
- 66 Family Gatherings
- 28 Books read
- 25 Essays written
- 5 Blog posts
- 4 Sick days
- 1 Heck of a year!
2020 Retrospective (Lessons)
The 3 biggest lessons I’d like to share are:
- You are capable of so much more than you think.
- Take care of your body.
- Take it easy.
1. You’re capable of so much more.
First, we’re all capable of so much more. The hustle, the push, the grind. Most of the limits that we set are all in our head. The equivalent of self-made, self-imposed, mental ceilings. It does take hard work, lots of discipline and rigorous execution; but you are most likely capable of achieving 2x to 3x of what you set your mind to. All you need is you.
2. Take care of your body.
You need to take care of your body. There is so much leverage in getting good sleep and regular exercise. You feel better. You think with clarity. You can brace hardship (COVID) calmly. The single activity with highest leverage this year was exercising more often. Alcohol and junk food become the hardest tradeoff. They ruin your sleep. The induced cravings lead to binge eating. Poor sleep and nutrition result in fuzzy thinking and sad slumps. Take care of your body, and everything else will take care of itself.
3. Take it easy.
I haven’t quite learned this “yet”, but it was an important realization. There is a fine line between laughing something off and taking something too seriously. I’ve personally been on the “too serious” side this year, to the point where my family, friends, and coworkers have come to know me by it. That’s no good. No one should want their reputation to be “the one who took things too seriously”. The lesson here is “relax” and “focus” my efforts on the few things that matter. And for everything else, just take it easy.
So what’s in store for next year? …
- On the craft side, I’d like to complete the Salesforce Certified Technical Architect (CTA).
- On the health side, I’d like to exercise 3 to 4 times per week.
- On the wealth side, I’d like to save 60% of my income. (stretch goal)
- On the tribe side, I’d like to continue building a home with Vickie. (home renovations)
2021 And What Else?
For the first time in over 5+ years, I have decided that in 2021 I will stop tracking, logging, counting and measuring my daily activities and habits. I will only focus on the 3 to 4 goals set out for the year of 2021. For everything else, I won’t measure it. The goal is to teach myself to relax, to focus on the few things that matter.
For those of you that know me personally, you know this might be one of the hardest things I change; but I am greatly excited to try this out and see the impact it will have in the coming year.
If you enjoyed this post, feel free to explore past posts:
- 2019: Year in Review
- 2018: Year in Review
- 2017: Year in Review
- 2016: Year in Review
- 2015: Year in Review
- 2014: Year in Review
And last but not least … my favorite part of these posts… !