Back in 2020, thanks to a tweet from my friend Sam I decided to make a list of just the positive things that happened through that year. Reading back at that post I realise that it is useful even today. You get to appreciate all you did that year.
So here is to keeping only the positives of 2022
I have struggled my entire life keeping good habits consistently. A lot of the times I pick up things just to abandon them later (hello guitar). But there are things that I kept doing. I kept doing the podcast with my friend Paris and all the friends that listen to us. I kept running and keeping active, I kept reading books, I kept improving my communication skills, I kept writing.
I mentioned running above but I feel this year it deserves its own section. This year I reached my goal of running 1000km in a year. This is something I aspired during my 3rd year of running. Back then I aimed to run in a year all the distance I’ve run the previous two. The number was 1000km. This year I did it. Not only that but I kept improving my best efforts on 5k, 10k, 1km, 1mile. It’s always great to improve but it’s even greater to improve while getting older. I aim to keep improving further in 2023.
Reading this year was different. I did read less, I listened more audiobooks (while running) but more importantly I diversified the categories of books I read. I did read more historical biographies (my favourite was about Lenin), more science fiction (my favourite here was Project Hail Mary) and I didn’t obsess about reading work related books. I did what I really wanted to do.
I’ve been practicing photography for more than a decade now. I’ve done mostly digital photography but I have ventured into film photography as well. The last couple of years I fell in love with Fujifilm cameras and their colour rendition. Being an owner of a capable camera like that had me curious about video but never tried it. At this point my friend Stathis worked as a catalyst. Stathis is passionate about videography, has a Youtube channel and he has been an inspiration. 2022 was the year were the stars aligned and I started publishing videos. Mostly videos of me fixing old consoles, running and drinking coffee. I am not aiming to a Youtube career. I aim to share what I love doing with friends and family. You can see of my videos here.
Gaming carried a shame in my mind. Gaming was something that I would share with the few people I really trusted in my life. The culprit was a small addiction I had in university with World of Warcraft. Back then it felt like a full blown addiction and I had hard time getting rid of it. I almost stopped playing completely for 15 years. A small exception was the Playstation consoles that I always had (I have owned everything from Playstation 1-5). Even then though I didn’t play many games. Hadn’t play Uncharted, The Last of Us, Red Dead Redemption, The Witcher and on and on. This year I decided to embrace this part of me. Not only did I start catching up with those wonderful games but I decided to acquire all those retro consoles that I had and sold or that I couldn’t afford in my younger years.
I am now a proud owner of many Gameboys, Gamecube, Nintendo 64 and in 2023 I want to get back the Playstation 3 that I sold and an original Xbox. I do like following the modding scene in all those consoles. There are many talented people keeping them alive in many ways. Rest assured to the fact that I’ll be recording all and sharing it on my Youtube.
Last time I finished with a section named “learning”. I thought I’d do the same this year but I renamed it to “Embracing me”. The reason is that I aimed this year to keep learning about what makes me happy. Learning as an act of self-love.
See, when you find yourself in troubled waters you need to adapt and keep an equilibrium of sorts. I figured out that in order to achieve that I need to learn how to make me happy. And this was the biggest learning of the year. I don’t think I’m done, I need to learn more and I’ll try that in 2023.
Outside of that I did learn more about NodeJS by moving my avcud.com side-project from Python to NodeJS. I still have a lot of work to do but thanks to that I learned more about Azure. I am keen on Azure and I think it’s a great platform to build. I learned a lot about VueJS thanks to my job and my colleagues. I learned how to take feedback more productively and how to react less defensively to it. I learned how to take distance from bad situations that put me down and give them time and distance before reacting.
More importantly thought I got reminded that learning never stops. It is frustrating at times finding out that you know nothing but you manage to adapt to it, bottle up the frustration and let it ferment to something sweet. Something that can fuel you in order to learn and grow even more. Grow as a human, as a friend, as a son, as a colleague, as a person. Here’s to growth.
I am ending this year in my hometown, the city of Lamia surrounded by family and friends of old. Rested and excited to tackle 2023. Warts and all. I wanted thought to end the year by honouring something that my grandmother and my mother used to say to me every NYE. “Whatever you choose to do during the last day of the year is what you’ll end up doing the rest of the year”.
This NYE I did deliver a redesign of my personal space on the web, giving it a lick of paint and a fresh look. I am writing this post expressing my gratitude for all the good things and my acceptance for the bad. I am focusing on the learning. I hope 2023 will be full of all that. Learning, gratitude, delivery, growth and most of all health.
Happy new year to all.