2018 in review – a response to last year’s resolutions

So in late December, 2017 I published some resolutions for the following year (2018). Here’s how I met them.

Weight and fitness
I hoped to lose 25kg by the end of the year but ended up losing 20kg. So I met my goal by 80%. I had hoped that much of my weight loss would be met by a regimen of regular exercise and increased walking. I too had limited success in this regard.
I did manage to walk an average of 14k steps a day this year which hits my 10k step goal however while I did around 17k steps per day up till summer, I have slacked off since coming to Japan. Similarly, I did get into a gym routine until the summer but my gym-going has been sporadic in the orient.

Music
I failed to get a merit or distinction in my Grade 8 piano exam but I did pass with a modest 110/150 (100=Pass, 120=Merit, 130=Distinction). I learnt far fewer pieces that hoped for but did deliver a half an hour recital in the summer.

Finances
I hoped to reduce my debt by half and accumulate £1000 in savings. While, I still have no savings (yikes), I am pleased to announce that I paid off all of my debt which rather alleviates the associated stress.

Academic pursuits
I hoped to get a high first (A) but didn’t even get a low one, alas. But, in the second semester of the 2017-2018 academic year I did manage to increase my average by 10% going from a mid 2.1 to a high 2.1 (B-A). But my subpar 1st semester brought my average down. Nevertheless, I was pleased with the improvement. I improved my attendance, made some notes in term which resulted in considerably less cramming and used SRS to aid the assimilation of knowledge in the holidays. Granted, there were many areas for improvement but I was pleased to see what I accomplished with my greater capacity for work, at the time.
I hoped to read more. It’s hard to say whether I met my reading goal as I didn’t track it properly but my non fiction reading still remains almost existent….at least in book form. I read many more news articles and papers this year than any other!

Japanese
Ha, this went really badly. I hoped to learn 500 kanji before coming to Japan. But I made no further improvements in Japanese before I arrived in October. That said, this is the best environment to learn the language and I am hoping for the next year of language learning. But more on that in my upcoming new year’s resolution post.

Ethics and personal standards
I had great success in reducing my meat consumption in 2018. I changed my ethical stance during the year and no longer considered it necessary to aim towards veganism and instead just embraced the reducetarian¬† label instead of viewing it as a transitory one. That said, my meat intake has increased since coming to Japan. It’s a failing on my part as it’s a contradiction of my current views.
With men, my dating situation is still a mess and I allowed myself to essentially fall in love with two different men in 2018 who wouldn’t care if I dropped off the face of the earth. Since coming to Japan, I’ve discovered that my unique blend of overweight physique, chocolate complexion and remote distance, takes the choice of making foolish decisions in the dating sphere away from me.

Mental health, positivity and outgoing
2018 has been great for my mental health. I’m leaving it in a much better place than 1 year ago. I find that I have a will to live, I’m capable of a range of positive emotions such as elation, exhilaration or satisfaction and this has positively impacted my ability to form new bonds during my year and even make progress on my instrument.
I no longer feel like I’m dedicating so many of my brain’s resources on dealing with ill thoughts and feelings and can minimise negative intrusions as they appear to the extent that it becomes possible to appreciate the positive aspects of life.
I feel incredibly lucky to have reached such a good place and hope to use this head space to accomplish great things in 2019.

To conclude, most goals were at least partially achieved and I look forward to continue to do well in 2019.

2018/10/19 – I can’t do this

I’ve been thinking about making this post for awhile.

Simply put, the self imposed pressure of posting daily is too much. I can’t do it. Ironically, by publicly admittedly this and saying I will post when I can, I may end up posting as frequently as once a day but its counter productive for me to commit to that high standard.

So expect future posts but they’ll be released when they’re released. Expect some to be in this Daily post format as I think it’ll be cool to highlight particularly cool days however others will be regular posts in other categories with no attached date.

Cheers