Annual Plan 2018

Reviewing 2017 made me appreciate what worked throughout the year. It also exposed a few places where things didn’t go as I wished, which is OK, but I hope to improve them this year. Overall, last year was great in from my experience and I hope this one will go similarly.

Relationships

I want to continue from last year and keep even closer to the people that are important to me. To strengthen the relationships with the closest circle rather than try and cover everyone and dilute my energy and attention. In other words, I want to give up on trying to be everyone all the time for everyone, but consciously to focus on the most important and valuable relationships.

I am planning to continue bringing myself closer to my family and to see them as much as possible, to keep more in touch and to listen. It might be a good idea to focus my attention on listening by reading a bit about it, not because I don’t know how to do it, but because when I read about a subject it saturates my attention and I become more aware of it.

Health

I really can’t complain about my health and am very grateful for it. For me health is mainly the by-product of good food, exercise, quality rest and reduced stress levels (and being careful to not get injured).

Food:

I think it is safe to say that Andra has revolutionized my life with her cooking and last year was amazing. I pretty much get a freshly cooked, delicious meal by her, every day for lunch at work and for dinner in the evenings. In short, I really am spoiled when it comes to food. I honestly don’t know where her passion and energy for cooking comes from, it is a mystery to me, but her efforts have paid off and I think they are one of the factors that have contributed to an overall better health.

However, this year I want to help and cook at least two meals per month myself. Who knows, maybe I can discover a passion for cooking. Plus, there are rumours that my pizzas are decent.

Ankle:

No real progress last year with my ankle pains. However, during Christmas we made an MRI scan and got a detailed diagnosis, so at least I know what’s wrong now. This gives me hope and the plan for this year is to find the right physiotherapy and work on improving the condition.

Sport:

Sport is fundamental for me. Currently I am focusing on cycling and gymnastics, so see my goals below.

Cycling:

Since I am turning thirty this year, I wanted to do something different and challenge myself while using the opportunity to raise money for charity (more details to come).

My plan is to cycle 300km in 24 hours. More specifically from Sheffield to Cardiff (320km). This might not seem that much to regular and very experienced cyclists, but for me it is a huge undertaking and a massive challenge. I don’t see myself as a particularly gifted or good cyclists, just a very stubborn now.

In the beginning of January I created and started my training schedule for this challenge while reading on nutrition and how to improve my endurance. My first ride of 30km and 700m elevation pretty much kicked me big time, so I had to sit down and plan. If you want to know more details on my progress, let me know and I can write a post.

Gymnastics:

I love bodyweight training and it’s simplicity. Gymnastics must be one of the ultimate displays of human strength and I am excited to continue from last October my adult gymnastic classes.

Once the cycling challenge / training is completed I am planning to focus on my gymnastics skills. These include flexibility, strength and training for specific moves.

By the end of the year I want to:

  • Do the split (either) or get as close as possible
  • Do a handspring on the floor
  • Improve my handstand to a 30s hold (good form)
  • Get to the advanced tuck planche 40s hold

Writing

Writing didn’t go well last year for me. I honestly think it’s a mental block, because I set myself the goal to write all the posts about my experiences in Iceland and I got half way. I don’t like quitting so instead of finishing what I started I just ignore it and don’t write at all.

My goal this year is to finish all the posts about Iceland so I can continue writing about the other things important to me. One post per week is the goal, as before.

Reading

Similarly, this year I want to continue working on my reading habits. My goals is five pages per day, but I do that through listening of audiobooks.

I think Audible is brilliant and worth it’s money. Another amazing service is Blinkist. The latter summarizes the main idea of a given book and you can listen to those parts of the book only. Essentially reading the book in 20-30 minutes rather than days. Both are great depending on what kind of books you prefer.

I also want to read at least one book in Spanish this year as part of my studies.

Photography

I want to try and dedicate some focus to photography this year as well. I normally do when we travel, but since it brings me a lot of joy, I want to specifically do something for it. In particular, I want to do one trip, maybe over a weekend with the bike to try and take some photos, to take in the place and try to capture it. It might even turn into a project and a place where I need to return several times. The outcome of this would be a photo, one for the whole year, the best one that I choose.

Travel

Cardiff, Wales (March / April) – Cycling to Cardiff as part of the challenge described above.

Bulgaria (April) – We are planning to go to Bulgaria and meet with my family for my birthday

Romania (July) – We are planning to go to a wedding to a couple of friends

Glasgow, Scotland (August) – We have booked tickets for the world gymnastics championships in Glasgow and are super excited to go.

Szeged, Hungary (September) – Going to another wedding in September.

Greece (December) – We are planning to spend Christmas together with family in Greece this year. This is way in advance planning, but it’s pencilled in.

Somewhere (Sometime) – I don’t know if, when or where, but I want to do another short cycling trip this year and explore a country as I’ve done in the past two. I am leaving this open and will decide as time comes.

Jicarilla Reunion (Sometime) – Still in the process of deciding when and where, but we are having our yearly reunion this year as well hopefully. It’s an amazing time that I think we all look forward to every year. Always very recharging.

Finances

We did really well with managing our finances last year, so I want to stick to the habits already built. Keep tracking the expenses, but this time review our finances every quarter, or as a minimum at the middle of the year.

Also optimise the budgets and see if anything can be improved.

I would like to sell some of the stuff that I have, that are potentially unnecessary – laptop, old bike, give away some extra clothes, sell camping gear that I don’t use, sports equipment, etc. Declutter and make some extra cash from them.

Moreover, I want to learn more about cryptocurrencies. I have been reading in the past few months, but I want to make this more focused – learn about specific currencies and what is the edge that they have in their technology compared to others. Research their companies and teams and choose ones to invest in that I believe will do well long-term.

Look for more investing opportunities. Nothing in particular, more about keeping my eyes open, reading latest ideas, seeing what friends are doing and learning from them.

Professional Development

I love what I do, so I want to get better at it.

Development: Finish building an internal tool I have been working on with the frameworks I want to use.

Build another internal tool for the service statuses that we communicate to clients with. Again, use the opportunity to learn.

Design: In my design skills I want to further develop the company’s design system framework, create documentation and systematise the approach to design.

Also, I want to do a month (30 days) of design. In other words, do a design every day for 30 days focusing on UI concepts to further develop my skills and learn some new things, but also have fun.

Finally, I want to see if there is a service I can use to “donate” my IT and design skills for a cause or an NGO that might need them.

Languages

I started learning Spanish last year and I love the classes with my teacher. This year I want to continue going to the classes and maybe apply to get a B1/B2 certificate for Spanish.

Review goals

This is something I learned last year, I think it’s important to come back to this post throughout the year, so I can better keep the goals in mind and make sure I push to achieve them. I will create a reminder to read the goals every three months this year and see if that helps.

Summary

Writing your goals for the year is exciting, but also very hard. I find it crutial to work on things that I love doing, but also set goals that can be reach realistically and are still slightly out of the comfort zone.

The most important in order to achieve goals, from my expeirence over the past few years, is to set specific goals, put specific time frames and deadlines for those goals, have a way of measuring the goal (how many kilometers, how many pages, which certificate, etc.). If you miss any of these elements, the goals become too abstract, and you do not know what you need to do, when you need to do it and what “success” means for that goal. The more specific you are, the better.

I am excited for this year and am looking forward to working on my goals. What about you, have you thought about yours, what are your main challenges this year?

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2 thoughts on “Annual Plan 2018

  1. Good luck :). If you want suggestions about books on listening skills, let me know. I did Level 1 and Level 2 Counselling Skills course, as well as a Foundation course in Gestalt psychotherapy. I look forward to being a company in your cycling adventures :).

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