Hello dear readers, welcome to another episode of “New Year, New Me”. First of all, I want to wish everyone a happy new year. Hopefully, 2018 will be full of happiness, health and success for you. For a variety of reasons some of you might have had a bad year. But worry not; because 2018 is here and whatever your goals were, you can keep trying.

Today I want to reflect upon the previous year and make some resolutions about the upcoming one. Personally, 2017 was a really good year for me. On the education, career and personal fronts, I made a lot of progress and had a lot of fun. Since I never got around to writing one of those for 2016, this post might have some older stuff as well.

Reflecting on the previous year

I finished my first year of university and started my second one. During this process I met a lot of interesting and cool people, like-minded individuals if you will. I always imagined university would be a fun place to be in but that was an understatement. If you use all the resources and facilities provided to you, it can be a very useful and valuable experience.

I got my first job during August 2017. I started working part-time as a web developer. This provided me with experience related to my field as well as some extra money. I think having my first job in my own field is a really good opportunity compared to just working a random job.

Other than my current job, I also found a placement for next year. I signed a contract with them around the end of 2017. After I finish my second year in school, I will be working in London as a full-time Software Engineer. I am really excited for this, I have met some people from the company as well as people from my team. They all feel like really nice people and I’m looking forward to working with them.

I started learning Chinese (Mandarin if you’re pedantic). Originally I was planning to learn Japanese, which would probably be easier for me because of similarities between Japanese and my native language, but in the end I decided to go with Chinese. So far I’m pleased with my decision, although my progress is slow because of my heavy workload.

During the good and bad parts of the year, my amazing girlfriend stood by me and supported me a lot. She made the worst part of my year (and one of worst times of my life) bearable, and I am really thankful to have such a kind and loving person in my life. We have been in a long-distance relationship for a while, but I am going to meet her in a few days so I am really excited.

I spent the whole year with great people. I want to express my gratitude towards one of the really special ones. Melis, my former flatmate, has been an incredible friend. She made my already bright life even brighter. At this point, she is like a sister to me. We secretly believe that we are somehow telepathically connected, although we have not been able to find any scientific evidence for this. Anyway; she is my brotato, and hopefully she will stay that way for a long time.

Resolutions for the new year

Ah, so here is the part where I tell you about how I’m going to become a completely better person compared to yesterday. Get ready for a whole bunch of empty promises that say how I’m going to study 20 hours a day and do cardio on top of it. Joking aside, I believe these new-year resolutions are useful things. It’s like a to-do list of things that would be good to try this year. Even if you don’t accomplish all (or any) of them, it is still enough to try.

Here is my list for 2018.

  • Make progress in Chinese. I want to spend more time this year learning Chinese. My goal is practicing common words and sentence structures. Maybe I will be able to read a children’s book by the end of this year.
  • Write more blog posts. I think having a small number of blog posts is fine, as long as the content is interesting. But I would still like to write more regularly. At least once a month would be ideal.
  • More gym. Although I walk a lot every day and prefer walking to the bus or Uber, I still think I need to be a little more active. I think the gym is a good way to spend time and become healthier at the same time.
  • Eat healthier. Speaking of healthy, I want to focus on foods with more nutrients. This is not very easy since I don’t have too much time for cooking, but a phone app can be helpful for keeping track of my food intake.
  • Waste less time. I usually find myself needing more time for things, which makes me believe there is a lot of wasted time in my day. I bought an Android app that allows me to do ‘Time-tracking’. I am hoping that it helps me be a little more efficient with my time management, but I am scared it might turn into “You watched 6 hours of Netflix today”.
  • Learn how to draw. I want to improve my drawing, which isn’t in a very good condition now. My goal is to spend around 15-30 minutes every day to try drawing something simple.

Is it a long list? Yeah. Is it likely that I will do everything in my list for the entire year? Probably not. But is it worth trying to do it and possibly improving yourself? Absolutely.

I urge everyone to also write something short, reflecting on their year and making resolutions for the new one. Writing this down and sharing it with other people might provide some extra motivation.