Year in Review: 2014

9:13:00 PM

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I take pride in being fairly introspective. I like examining myself: what usually eats me, what rouses me, how I react to things, what needs to change (rarely what shouldn't). I believe that looking in (as long as you can be absolutely honest with yourself) is a pretty useful habit in achieving personal progress.

Self-evaluation is every nostalgic's favorite activity around the coming of a new year. So being a fan of the feels (and clean slates), it was quite a strange feeling for me to want to suddenly run away from all that. Of course I still look forward to the new year, but I found the fireworks and festivities and fanfare a bit insufferable this time around. I left 2014 not really knowing exactly what kind of year I had.

I just couldn't completely escape it since spontaneity is not one of my strengths. I like being in control of everything life allows me (read this if ya feel me) and planning 2015 involved a year-end review of sorts. Thankfully, minimalism champs like Anuschka of Into Mind thrive at taking out the guesswork for the rest of us. If (like me) you have no idea how to go about it, Anuschka's 50 Questions is a good place to start. I'll share with you some of my answers.

2014
2. If you had to describe your 2014 in 3 words, what would they be?
Eye-opening, humbling, changing.

3. What new things did you discover about yourself?
That I'm not really scared of failing and losing.

4. What single achievement are you most proud of?

I consider it an achievement to have held back anger when it was most convenient (and damaging) to let loose. 

6. What was your favourite place that you visited in 2014?
Laiya, San Juan.

7. Which of your personal qualities turned out to be the most helpful this year?
The ability to just switch off.

12. What was the most important lesson you learnt in 2014?
The less you let things (people, circumstances) get to you, the better. Less feelings, more solid truths.

19. What little things did you most enjoy during your day-to-day life?
Having enough time for quiet in the morning. I barely missed a devotional session and I exercised for an average of 2x every week!

24. What major goal did you lay the foundations for?
I hope to be more responsible on the financial aspect. I still suck at saving money but hey, I got no debts!

The last 10 questions in Anuschka's list are dedicated to having a sense of direction for the new year. (I covered this in my previous post, where I talked about growing up: finding the courage and commitment to change, by way of purposeful living.)

2015

41. What do you want the overarching theme for your 2015 to be?
Living with intent.

42. What do you want to see, discover, explore?
People. I've been looking in too much.

44. What skills do you want to learn, improve or master?
Being quick to listen, slow to speak, slow to anger.

46. What do you want your everyday life to be like?
Not wasted.

48. What do you want to achieve career-wise?
A sense of seniority that goes beyond any title, to confirm my place here.

50. What is your number one goal for 2015?
Know what I'm doing.

You should give it a try, even if it's only for private reflection.

Having already faced the past year's issues (with much, much reluctance), I feel like I can already work on specific action plans (the "next steps" and "deliverables" as we call it in advertising). It's easy to romanticize the years, old and new. Living through them is another story.

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"Now the trouble about trying to make yourself stupider than you really are is that you very often succeed."
CS Lewis

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