Here are a few words about the year gone by, and what I’m hoping to focus on the year ahead. It’s not a full “year in review” type post, although there’s a bit of that, and there’s no dramatic insight or anything of that nature. It’s more of a chance for reflection, plus a bit of a document for future me on what the year was like.

Personally, as difficult as this past year was, I wouldn’t necessarily say 2020 was a bad year. I know I’m saying this from a position of good fortune: I didn’t loose my job, or my house, or my health. So I know there are a lot of others that have experienced a much worst year than I have. But for me, I’m coming out of this year feeling a little better than I have the previous couple of years gone by.

I think a big reason for this was that I was forced to change my routine. I’m someone that can operate on a routine that don’t change for a long period of time. There are benefits to this but it does mean that every passing year feels more-or-less like the previous one, and I always find myself feeling a little bad on New Years Eve for not “doing something different”. Being forced to change my routine by the pandemic and resulting lock-downs was a small positive that came out of an otherwise bad situation. The did mean that I could no longer rely on the the various chronological anchors, like birthdays or even going to the office, that are useful for experiencing the passage of time, resulting in a year that felt to be passing too slowly and quickly simultaneously. But it also added some variety to the activities that got me through the day, which resulted in a year that was slightly more novel to the previous few.

Working from home also provided an opportunity to try something new. The whole working from home experience was something that I was curious about, and I am glad that I had an opportunity to try it out. It worked out better than I expected: although there were times when I really did miss working closely with other people, I found that I could work effectively at home as long as I had work to do. The lack of a commute also meant that I had more time on my hands. I’m glad that I didn’t just spend that time just coding on personal projects or vegging out on the couch (although there was a bit of that as well). I joined, which was probably one the best decisions I’ve made this year. I also learnt a lot about writing and creativity, and I got back into music composition, something that I have neglected for a while.

Writing and publishing is something that I’m hoping to continue in 2021. I hope to setup new routines and systems to write more often, both on this and another writing project that I’m in the process of starting. I’m trying a few things to keep myself true to this, like keeping a daily log (which is private at the moment, but I’m hoping to make it public eventually). Publishing things online is something that I need to work on a bit more but it is also an area that I’m hoping to work on. Although I not seriously following the yearly theme system, if I had to choose, I plan to make this one a year of “sharing”1.

Hope you all have a Happy New Year and here’s to a great 2021.

  1. Incidentally, the theme for 2020 was “chance”, which became a little morbid as the year went on. ↩︎