The Annual Review

Happy Blue Friday! I hope you all had a merry holidays! Can you believe we’re already just under a week away from 2015? Last night, I finished The Happiness of Pursuit, by Chris Guillebeau. As I mentioned in my last post (here), it’s a wonderfully written, inspiring book that helped me get out of a depressive slump I was dealing with. One of the things suggested by the book, is to do a little end-of-the-year annual review. You look at what went well this year & what didn't go so well, to help yourself reflect & set goals for the new year. So I thought, why not? Here's what I got:

What went well in 2014

  • I've loosened up. I used to live my life in a very black and white way, in the sense that I didn't tolerate drinking, I didn't eat meat (except fish), and everything in my room had be a certain way. This year I started eating meat again and a responsible drink or two. As for my room, it looks a little less obsessive compulsive now, and it feels good. 
  • Improved blog content. Regardless of the year, I'm always trying to improve the quality of what I put out on my blog. I may not have posted as much the second half of this year, but what I did post, I'm proud of it!  (Check out one of my favorite posts here)
  • Great year of travels. I always thought that a family vacation a year was the American Dream. This year I was fortunate to go to Hawaii and California with my family, as well as been selected for an all expense paid trip to Orlando, Florida. I'm truly grate, and I must say, that only fueled my thirst for travel!
  • Made new friends from all over the U.S. In reference to the all expense paid trip I mentioned above, the American Society of Radiologic Technologist chooses about 60 rad-tech students each year, from all over the U.S., to attend their Student Leadership Development Program each year. This year I was one of the 72 selected and during my week in Orlando, FL, I met some wonderful people and developed some lifelong friendships!
  • Disneyland. Twice. For awhile, I've made it a mission to go to Disneyland every year, but this year I got to see both Disney World in Florida (here), and Disneyland in California (here). Just thinking about those trips again brings me all smiles! :)
  • Finished first half of clinicals. This year I spent 8 months at my first clinical site, and while the start was a bit rough, I really got into the swing of things and felt I really connected with all of my clinical instructors. I learned a lot from all of them, from a radiologic standpoint, and a from a life lessons standpoint. I couldn't ask for a better experience.
  • Resolved my insomnia. I've always had trouble sleeping for as long as I could remember (age 5), and it took me until this year, with 3 doctors visits, to resolve it. It's a wonder what 1/2 a dose of melatonin can do. 

I have to admit, when I first faced those two questions, my mind came up with about 20 things that didn't go so well in 2014, and none for things that went well. As I went back and looked my year, I found I had a lot to be thankful for this year. :) Of course, with the things that didn't go so we'll, of course they're hard to share, but here they are.

What didn't go so well in 2014

  • My depressive slump. I think the thing that stands out to me the most, was the 4-5 months that I just lost motivation for anything and everything, and simply felt depressed. By day, when I was distracted my clinic and school, or work, I was fine. Anytime when I was home, I just felt this deep sadness (which I didn't know why), and I just laid in bed until it as time to sleep. I didn't clean my room, I didn't go out with friends anymore, and I stopped responding to work emails. It was bad, but I got myself out.
  • I stopped making Youtube videos. I always said, "Once a Youtuber, always a Youtuber." This year though, I've put out the least amount of videos I've ever and frankly, I'm disappointed in myself for that fact. I refuse for 2015 to be like that. 
  • I've been behind on things. Last year I always planned ahead, finished assignments weeks in advanced, and was always well prepared. This year, I'm not sure if it was because of my slump, but I was always just on time with things or barely on time, and I hated it. It's stressful. I rather take the chance of being stressed about getting things done ahead of time, than actually being stressed for when things may not be on time.

Once you've sat down and looked at your year in those two aspects, the next step is to put together a new list of goals from your reflections, for the next year, but I'll leave that for the next post. In the mean time, give it a go yourself! -  JEN