2018 review: reflection process, accomplishments, biggest lessons, and new goals

In the last weeks of the year, I like to devote time to reflect. I do this for a few reasons: 1) to note the biggest lessons 2) to celebrate the wins, and 3) to gain clarity in crafting the new year’s goals. I ask big questions, write extensively, think silently for hours, and discuss ideas with my closest friends. The questions, gathered from articles like this one, change every year depending on where I am in my journey. This year, my goal is to find a job that is fulfilling, stimulating, and challenging. Having moved out from my family home, I see this period as an opportunity to design the life I truly want; thus, a portion of my reflection focused on my thoughts on life, work, and how they integrate. The fixed portion of my reflection involves answering these types of questions:

  • What were your 2018 accomplishments?
  • What do you want in 2019?
  • What’s going to be different this year?
  • What do you want to change and transform?
  • What are some mental beliefs that you need to work on to achieve your 2019 goals?
  • What is the exercise routine you are willing to fulfill?

After answering the questions, I set up one-on-ones with friends to gain a different perspective and add an element of accountability. I’m experimenting with my strategy this time – writing a list of my ideal self at the end of 2019, paragraph of my January goals, and a separate paragraph acting as if I had accomplished my January goals.

Accomplishments

Celebrating wins is important in creating a sense of fulfillment. Fulfillment comes from pausing to appreciating what is: what has happened, what you have, and what you’ve created. Also, I believe it is important to allow yourself to feel proud, because it feeds your inner child.

2018 was my year of rebirth. I grew immensely in my sense of self, laying down a stronger mental and emotional foundation for my next challenge. I became more resilient, fearless, faithful, unapologetic, and balanced. This year, I:

  • Healed from a big break up and got back out there
  • Paid off my student loan debt
  • Found my solid social circles (Fortunate to say, I truly love every person in my life.)
  • Accomplished my 24-book reading goal (first time ever)
  • Moved to my favorite city
  • Gracefully left my job of 5 years to pursue another path
  • Travelled more than I’ve ever travelled in a year (SEA, SF x 3)
  • Succeeded in my “vlog for a month” goal (ended up vlogging for 6 months!)
  • First time having my art featured in a gallery
  • Learned how to twerk (big win.)

Biggest Lessons

Writing is a daily practice for me as it’s my primary method for processing the world. One series I started this year was writing things I learned that day. Here are five of the most impactful lessons:

  1. Patience is key. Make sure to grind day in and day out, and results will come. If you are constantly thinking about how to be better and questioning yourself with courage and humility, it’s only a matter of time.
  2. “Too often we give power to the things that drive our ego,” (Megyn Kelly). We are more than our titles, our jobs, our accolades. We are who we are due to the things that don’t receive merit but make us feel the most alive. Attribute your personal power to how you impact those around you, to those who you love and love you, and your strength and virtues.
  3. Communication is an art. Every word you speak must be purposeful, succinct, and clear in getting your message across. By thinking about why you’re saying what you’re saying and organizing your words accordingly, you can build your ability to communicate, as well as increase the weight of your words (aka more power).
  4. Using your resources is not a burden on others, unless you make it so. Package your words respectfully and graciously. Be thankful. Relinquish your ego and be the student. Those who are the students learn more and become more successful than those who think they need to be experts. Say “I don’t know”. You don’t need to be an expert. Being an expert is a lonely role anyway. If you come with good intentions and honor your teacher, they will not find you burdensome. It’s a mutualism. They feel great for teaching, and you feel great for learning so much at such a fast rate.
  5. 20’s are indeed the years of maximum risks, maximum rewards. You’re in the right place, and it’s the right time.

Goals

I was hesitant about publicly publishing my goals, but this will keep me accountable. (Also, it’s a way for me to “do the fearful thing”.) Here are the big ones:

  • Job stability and financial growth
  • Dig deep into finance, cooking, and design
  • Create every day and publish it
  • Read 30 books from a wide range of topics
  • Volunteer in an organization
  • Physically toned all around
  • Travel to Paris (and possibly another country)

I am spending the last few days of 2018 collecting insight, reading, and designing my plan for each goal. If you would like to discuss ideas, feel free to reach out. Otherwise, best of luck, get wild, and good vibes for the new year!

Stay hungry, stay foolish. – Steve Jobs

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