Looking back at 2018

I seem to be later and later at writing this kind of posts every year; at this rate I'll write them in February! But... at least I keep writing them! So there's that.

In my defence, I'll just say I have been pretty busy, and you'll see why!

Personal achievements

We keep being married! We actually celebrated our first anniversary (I learned it's the paper anniversary). We also survived our first Christmas in the UK as a married couple and did not think of filing for divorce (it seems to be the most popular time to get those ideas!). We seem to be "winning" at this. Good on us.

Other personal achievements

  • Physical
    • Cycled 1171 km (pretty much like last year!), over 103 hours
    • Ran 89.3 km (but I think it's missing indoors treadmill work)
    • Swam more, for longer, and without getting absolutely exerted after one length.
    • I let go of the personal trainer as I felt I reached the point where they were not adding value any more and were stressing me more than anything, as they have their own ideas as to what I wanted to do in life (???). I decided I would remove stressors from my life, and here's a proof of taking action!
    • But I am learning more about training and weight lifting
      • And slowly upping my personal bests at weight lifting! I'm almost deadlifting my whole body weight now, and squatting about 61% of my weight. That's excellent!
      • I can do 4 or 5 full body press ups in a row (compared with... one? last year).
    • I kept doing yoga!
      • Tried to do at least one class a week (Ashtanga). I found it very boring initially but I like how meditational it can be and the sense of flow and inward attention I can develop.
      • I also am a bit more bendy, I've been told.
      • I can also hold a crow pose for about 20 seconds. Last year it was... 3?
      • And I can do a headstand sometimes! Next: freestanding headstands (without a wall, because I'm still terrified of rolling over to the side).
      • I am also quite amused by the fact that people have confused me with the teacher a few times as I have entered the yoga studio. I get in, and I am asked questions about the class difficulty, the format... which I answer as best as I can, until they realise I am just another student, because I'm sitting down on the normal mat, and they seem too embarrassed to admit their confusion. I wonder what is it--the attittude? the looks? I don't think I look "prototypical yoga teacher", but I'm very amused either way!
  • I kept meditating, but I outgrew the Headspace app, and decided to not renew the subscription. It was good to get started, but at the end you're just paying to download literal silence, and I don't like the way it's designed to try to make you feel guilty if you break a streak (which cannot be disabled), and the fact that at some point it starts to feel like all the packs are the same-ish. I also was stressed about whether the app would have crashed (if it's silent, is it still playing? or did it crash?) and how my pace didn't match theirs. So it kept disturbing my own meditation. Not helpful. It did teach me things, but I'm done with it.
    • Another reason is that I'm doing a number of 'mindful' activities already. So doing more 'meditation' after, for example, an hour and a half of yoga seemed like too much mindfulness. There's only so much time in the day.

Work wise

  • I keep being an engineering manager at DevTools
    • In fact, I've learned a lot!
    • Also have been tasked with more responsibilities and given my official subteam inside DevTools (Core Tools 🤓... we're making the tools super strong 💪🏼 and paying off technical debt)

(This post was never finished as work became quite intense, but I found the rest of it amusing, so I am publishing it either way)