It’s that time again! Halfway through January in the new year, it’s time to look back at 2018’s goals, see how they turned out, and use those lessons to set new and better goals for 2019. Let’s go!
2018 Goals in Review
- Grow at Work: I made good progress in developing more fluency in Agile methodologies and techniques, bouncing from a successful Product Owner to a Scrum Master role after our team downsized a little. Despite really disliking being expected to motivate peers paid much more than me, I have learned quite a bit about what the role can and cannot accomplish.
- Start Exercising Regularly: My walking distance has crept up steadily and I’m thankful for that, but I never really found a rhythm for stretching or exercising in a regular fashion outside of long walks and semi-regular bike rides.
- Plan Nights and Weekends: We tried this for most of spring (and it worked well for a bit), but it started to yield less and less results as it became less novel and less compatible with external stressors and obligations. Instead, we switched to a dedicated night per week for games and lightly planned weekends and that has worked well as a fallback.
- Clear (Some) Game Backlog: Most of my legacy gaming backlog is still the same as last year. Now I know that it won’t solve itself and needs to be addressed a little more directly.
- Play Myst 4, 5, and Obduction: I dipped my toe into Myst 4 just in time for Cyan to do a Kickstarter for a re-release of all of the Myst titles. Now that 4 finally runs on Steam, it’s back on my list for this year.
- Read More Books: Unfortunately, my backlog is largely the same as it was a year ago. It’s just something I couldn’t find the time for, and when I did it was very difficult to slow down enough to focus on the simple task of reading.
- Finish and Publish Oral History Project: Despite taking much more effort than I expected, I did follow through on this and I’m very happy with the outcome. I have shared it with most of my family members at this point and they have all been thankful. Good outcomes all around.
- Publish Springs Photo Book: Basically no movement on this one, so it’s been pushed into 2019 with lower requirements and expectations.
- Get (a Little) into Investing: I didn’t purchase any shares in 2018, but I did gather some information on Roth IRAs and opened one with Schwab. It will be a crucial piece of my budgeting strategy in 2019.
- Relocate from Florida: Despite some genuine efforts (visiting Charlotte twice, talking to locals on Reddit), I didn’t make much headway on my Florida exit plan. A big reason: Rob got a killer job and it pumped the brakes on our planning (and I was fine with that).
- Regular Exercise, Attempt 2: I’m taking this goal a little more seriously this year, both to further my healthy habits and to hopefully ease some of my hip problem worries. I’m committed to finding a way to do at-home stretches and basic body-weight exercises a few times a week in addition to joining a gym and participating in a couple group exercise classes a week. It’s all new and foreign to me, but I’ve already signed up for UCF’s student gym and attended a couple times, so off to a good start!
- Regular Meditation: It’s still new for me, but I’m willing to believe a commitment to doing even a short session every day will help me deal with the stress and anxiety that stems from all of these pursuits in ways I can’t pinpoint or foresee. There’s no excuse not to: plenty of apps and resources and virtually no time commitment.
- Make Time for Indulgence: I scrutinize my free-time choices too strongly. With a list of goals in my face, I never rationalize time for just watching some TV or playing a game I’ve played 100x before. This year, I’m going to make a conscious effort to make time for relaxing and not being directly productive. Recharge time.
- Buy Few New Games, Play the Backlog: I really disliked most AAA games I purchased this year, and I never really got to any of the games on my backlog. This year, I’m going to severely limit new game purchases and focus most of my gaming time on titles I’ve wanted to play for a long time. Some of those include:
- Hollow Knight
- Myst 4, 5, and Obduction
- Metroid Prime 2 and 3
- Sly Cooper: Thieves in Time
- Dark Souls 3 and Bloodborne
- Dead Cells
- Final Fantasy 12 and 9
- The Journeyman Project 2
- Springs Book: I want to put out a book of photos that I have taken at Florida springs. I’ve put this off for far too long and I need to scale back the scope and just get it done, even if it’s just for me.
- New Savings Approach: This year, Rob and I are abandoning individual long-term emergency funds in favor of a single unified fund. We have also opened individual Roth IRA accounts and are contributing the maximum amount to each (and playing catch-up for 2018). We realized that we were saving too much money that wasn’t doing anything for us in the meantime, so this year we’re going to invest it properly.
- What’s Next?: The big one: what’s next for me? I’ve been in Orlando since 2005 and have worked at UCF since 2008. Life is too short to have so few experiences, so I want to develop a solid plan to find a new job and relocate to it. I’ve come to believe that I have to find some opportunity in order to make the leap of faith, so I’ll be looking for that as well. Not to jinx it, but maybe N/NE Atlanta?
That’s all I got to start 2019. It’s going to be a busy year, but I’ve got a track record of making it work and I need to keep that in the front of my mind every time I stumble. I’d love to hear from my readers: what are your 2019 goals? How can I help you with them? You know where to find me.
State of the Blog
Sometimes I don’t even know why I write these articles, but whenever somebody messages me even once and tells me that they enjoyed reading it or got something out of it, it feels worth it. Thank you for reading. I appreciate every single second of your attention and time.