New Year, Old Me

I’m not a New Year’s Resolution person, mostly because I don’t think they work. I’m not opposed to the idea, I just think that they take a wrongheaded approach (for me). Picking up a new habit is a lot of hard work, and I think trying to kick off a new year with the idea that it’s going to be a complete “fresh start” I think puts people in the wrong mindset for setting a habit.

2018 is going to be just that. Nothing really changes, except that you’re just now forced to write 2018 down on everything (and inevitably get it wrong for most of January/February if you’re me). A lot of 20172018s aside, there’s not really much of a mental shift. I really think that if you’re going into the new year with the mindset that the moment the ball drops in Time Square that everything’s going to change, you’re destined to fail.

With that… new year, same me - except I hope that I make some improvements in 2018 and I don’t pick up too many more bad habits. I do think it’s healthy to reflect on the things you’ve achieved in the past year or so, so you can have a realistic expectation of what can be achieved for the next year.

Things I’ve Done in 2017

  • Quit a job I liked
  • Started a new job
  • Started my first job as a “senior” engineering person (whatever that’s supposed to mean, but I guess the title bump is cool!)
  • Actually felt like I was a “real” engineer (thanks imposter’s syndrome)
  • Visited Tokyo for the first time
  • Visited Kauai for the first time
  • Went through my worst breakup yet
  • Moved in with my business partner and his wife
  • Started a side project that I’ve actually stuck to
  • Crushed my lifting PRs (Bench: 135lb, Deadlift: 220lb, Squat: 205lb)
  • Didn’t go insane even though Trump is our president

That’s actually a fairly sizeable breakdown for 2017. I’m actually pretty proud, all things considered (especially with that last one).

With that said, I think there are a couple things I hope to accomplish in 2018.

Things I Hope to Achieve in 2018 (but I won’t be horribly mad about if I don’t achieve)

  • Ship a MVP of my side project
  • Crush more lifting PRs (Bench: 150lb, Deadlift: 250lb, Squat: 230lb)
  • Learn another language (Clojure/Rust/Elixir)
  • Continue to not go insane even though Trump is our president
  • Visit Thailand for the first time
  • Visit NYC for the first time
  • Dress more like an adult (specifically, get my first wedding-appropriate set of clothes)
  • Write more WTF Algorithms (I got lax on this one)

I think these are all fairly realistic, and solid goals to have for 2018. I think having honed/drilled down goals (while sometimes demotivating when you can’t hit them) makes it so that mentally you actually have numbers to hit. And, there’s nothing sweeping there that makes it seem like I’m going the route of completely changing myself.