Earlier this month, the blog for the journaling app I use, Day One, posted an article with ten questions to answer to reflect on the past year. This exercise is also meant to be looked back on in six months to a year and beyond so that you can see the growth, or lack there of, you’ve made since writing.
I decided to do this exercise about a week ago and have decided to post it, mostly because I just wanted to. My blog is my space. Simple as that. But, I would also like to encourage you all to do this exercise and to journal more in general. I feel it’s a healthy way for us to get our thoughts and ideas out, and as NY Magazine noted , journaling can help get us out of an emotional rut. If you’d like to do this exercise, you can check that out with advice of how to answer the questions here .
1. What was your favorite single day/single event of the year?
This is easy. January 27, when I landed in Seattle and got to see the smile on my girlfriend’s face. I had delayed myself in coming out with school troubles, so I felt like I was redeeming myself a bit by making it out there a month after originally planned. Then to see Kat and the pure joy of seeing me on her face, on top of being in the place I longed to be in, it was a perfect moment.
2. What was the best thing you built/created?
My GPA. I’m proud to say I was able to pull myself off academic probation, after overwriting a couple of failing grades with passing ones. All it really took was me allocating my time correctly.
3. What was the most impactful decision you made for you and your family’s future?
This comes back to number two. I absolutely need to get this degree to have a chance in having the career I want in Seattle. I still have a lot of work ahead of me, but getting my academics corrected and being able to move forward for me was huge.
4. What was your best financial achievement?
I don’t know if achievement is the correct word, but I swallowed my pride and had my mom move in with me in order to gain some flexibility so I can afford to move to Washington. It hasn’t gone perfectly by any means, but I’m in a much better spot to do some damage with my savings account.
5. Did you achieve any lifelong goals?
I finally got to see Safeco Field this year, when Kat and I went to the Mariners Fan Fest. Such a beautiful ballpark, and I got to hug the Mariner Moose.
6. What was the hardest lesson you learned over the past year?
Actions are everything. Actions show how much I want my relationships and how much I want to make something of myself. There were times this year I didn’t put forth the action and it was costly. I have to want it. As Marshawn Lynch would say, you gotta be “‘bout that action, boss.”
7. Did you develop any new hobbies or passions? Are there any new hobbies or passions you want to develop in the New Year?
I’m actually starting to show some dedication to TV shows. The holidays have got in the way this past week, but I’m almost done with Season 1 of Atlanta. I also hope to catch up on the last few seasons of It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia and I may start rewatching The Office. The biggest catalyst for this has been the TV app on the Apple TV, which organizes the shows you’re watching and puts them front & center for you. It’s a really nice interface and I’m hopeful they’re able to add Netflix to it soon.
8. What was the most humbling experience of the past year?
It hasn’t even been two weeks since I lost my father. But, it’s a sobering reminder to say “I love you” when you feel it, to call when you get the urge, to do the thing you said you would do for someone, and so on. Because you never know when the clock will run out.
9. What is the one thing you are most grateful for from this past year?
Related to number eight, I’m happy I got 38 years with my father around. I’m grateful he helped give me life and I’m thankful for the lessons he did teach me.
10. What are your personal goals for the coming year? Family goals? Religious goals? Health goals? Financial or career goals?
Graduate, get a job, and move. This is my only motivation right now.
I also need to take more photos. I'm horrible about this. I think back to the times I've had with my father and I never got a photo with him. I need to do better about this.
I’m also going to see what kind of fitness streak I can get going on my Apple Watch once New Year’s Day rolls around. Early this year I had a 20-something day streak going and I want to see if I can best that.
I hope to hold myself more accountable with my goals this year. I’m expecting 2017 to be an important year for me, as I’m so close to a few of my major goals. I’m looking forward to this coming year.
Happy New Year, everyone.