2019 was an amazing ride – a personal look back

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(Before you continue, This article is not a rant about politics. It is also not a general article about things that happened around the world. It’s an article about how the year was for the author)

2019 was a rollercoaster. It was an amazing ride for me. Most of what I am today is because of stuff that happened this year.

2019 year review
(completely unnecessary and pointless art)

I’d like to use this blog post as a reminder to myself what this year was for me. Thanks to google photos and social media I can scroll through time and look back.

One slight issue that I have towards this year is that it was a bit boring towards the end (unlike previous years). This could be attributed to some college stuff that came in the way.

Let’s just leave that and continue on.

The year started amazing. I did a product launch in January which went really well. I was busy almost every night. This product and everything associated with it used up most of my time.

Product Launch

(I do not wish to name this product. Let’s just call it “App X” for the sake of this article.)

Launch a product png
(actual image of me launching something)

I launched App X in January and was occupied in it’s continued development for about 5 months. I released patches, features, documentation and bug fixes while managing sales, disputes, and marketing at the same time.

Although I did not do the best job in any of these, I still managed to somehow work everything and I loved every moment of it.

The App slowly became less and less relevant to a point where it became unmaintainable. It was good while it lasted.

The Switch to Mac

apple color logo png

I switched from a Windows laptop to a Macbook pro this year. Bought a used one with a small dent on the side. I don’t really mind the dent.

No matter what some people say but Mac OS is 10 steps ahead of windows in the ease of use criteria. I consider this a major boost in my workflow.

I also am using an old iPhone 6 now. I like it but honestly, it doesn’t feel that much of an improvement coming from an android (other than the ecosystem benefits).

iHateRegex – Project

I started working on a project which I soo professionally named -iHateRegex.

Essentially it’s a cheat sheet for basic Regex expressions with visualizations for easy understanding.

I spend a lot of time on this. But as I was nearing the launch, my old pal Imposter Syndrome kicked in. I felt it wasn’t worth my effort and that I’m gonna be made fun of because of how useless it is.

I’m going to try launching this again in January of 2020 after leaving the project for months.

My first *real* motorcycle

I bought my first bike this year – a Jawa 42. This is a significant upgrade from the Honda Dio which I previously rocked.

Jawa 42

Health

I have to admit – I wasn’t consistent at hitting the gym this year. I’ve been slacking off a lot recently. This is something that I WILL fix in 2020. I also switched to a new gym this year.

Gym weight lifting png

Personal Development

“You will be the same person in five years as you are today except for the people you meet and the books you read.”

Charlie Tremendous Jones

Although I do not fully agree with this quote, I do believe it is a simplified version of reality. Books and people aren’t the only factors but they are 2 of the biggest.

Reading: I did not read as much as I used to this year (which means – not much). I re-read a few of my old books. I also tried reading for entertainment (which I rarely have done before).

Here are some top books:

  • The Art of War, Sun Tzu
  • The War of Art, Steven Pressfield (Yeah both 😛 )
  • Letters from a Stoic, Seneca
  • The 4-Hour Workweek, Tim Ferriss
  • Meditations, Marcus Aurelius

(all of the above are non-fiction)

Journaling

Journaling: I’m always used to writing things down. Everything feels more clear when I do this. I tried to journal regularly as it will help me review the day and plan out the next day. This didn’t happen most days but I found myself super-productive whenever I journaled continuously.

I do not follow an exact guideline for journaling. I just write or draw everything down before and/or after I do it. I guess you could also call that planning. I might also write about how I feel doing this and maybe why do I feel this way about something.

I personally relate to pictures far more than words. I’m used to drawing pictures and all sorts of diagrams(I love this) to visualize data. I’m like that kid from Taare Zameen par 😛

Opportunities

A few things that happened this year are:

Zee Camp 2019: The good people at Pehia arranged a Bootcamp to empower the transgender community by teaching them basic computer skills and coding. I was invited to take a 3-day workshop on web development.

Vue workshop – College of Engineering, Trivandrum: I was invited to conduct a one day workshop on Vue.js at CET, Trivandrum conducted by IEDC.

Key takeaways

Here is some stuff in no specific order taken from my journal and from the top of my mind that I think this year has taught me.

  • Always be sure what you’re aiming for. Do not chase the wrong target.
  • There is no right or wrong way of doing most things. No matter what any book claims. There are multiple approaches to everything and one might work better than the other.
  • Do not spend time on stuff that doesn’t matter at the end.
  • Perfectionism is a form of “Resistance” (The War of Art).
  • You have power over your mind – not outside events. Realize this, and you will find strength (Marcus Aurelius). You might not be able to change something external but you can certainly change the way you feel about it.
  • Time flies faster than you often think.
  • Build more assets. Do not exchange time for money.
  • Never ever try to please everybody(Big NO).
  • Selective Ignorance- use it.
  • Do not ask for or listen to others’ opinions unless they’re masters in the field. Use your logic and reasoning to figure stuff out first.
  • Greatest war is within oneself.
  • Do not drift, Always be aware of the moment and all your goals.
  • Your environment plays a *huge* role. Sending time or money on your environment is actually an investment in yourself.

Each of these deserves a blog post of their own. But for now, this would do.

What now?

I know there is a chance that this blog post might make me look like a productivity saint. But that’s far from the truth.

What I regret most about 2019 is the time I’ve wasted on shit that didn’t serve me(David Goggins give me strength!). I avoided most of the negative parts from this post to make it short and fun.

If you read this fully and have feedbacks for me, give me a ping.

A new decade and a new year. Let’s see where 2020 will take us.

Happy New Year everybody!