A Year in Review: 2020

Blessings, achievements, goals, and life lessons of the past year

Why Am I Writing This?

It’s that time of year again! I both look forward to and dread this time of year. I enjoy it because I get to reflect on my year as a whole, revisit good memories, lay out my achievements, and express gratitude for all of the blessings in my life.

I don’t enjoy it, however, because it’s such a huge endeavor. That’s why I put it off each year. I think last year I didn’t finish it until the end of March? That’s already 1/4 of the year gone. *facepalm*

As of this writing, it’s almost the end of February. I only put it off this time because I wanted to catch up with my January book notes before getting started on this. (See my most recent book notes: The Autobiography of Malcolm X which is a fantastic read. I highly recommend it!)

And now that I’m caught up, I have no other excuses haha.

2020 Has Been One Heck of a Year

I would be remiss if I didn’t mentioned what an unprecedented year 2020 has been. Not only did we have a global pandemic that claimed a lot of lives, completely tanked the economy, and halted travel around the world, but it was also a time of social unrest. The BLM movement gained momentum in response to police brutality, and racism was stoked by white supremacists supported by arguably the worst president in modern U.S. history, Donald Trump.

This year forced us as people to learn how to cope with adversity and adapt to hardships many of us have never experienced before. Unfortunately, some of us had to also deal with the loss of family, friends, careers, and overall a sense of security.

While I’m grateful that none of my immediate circle of family and friends have gotten sick, I do know people who have lost loved ones. But as we wrap up the 1st quarter of the year with several vaccines being distributed, there’s light at the end of the tunnel. They’re projecting that by May, there will be enough doses for all adults in the country. So hopefully I’ll be able to travel and fly to the Bay Area and visit family.

For me personally, this year has been a year of creative growth, deeper personal connections, and honing in on developing my skills. But I’ll go over these later on in this post.

A Tradition Since 2016

Since 2016, I’ve been doing these yearly reviews mainly for my own records. However, these reflections may also be beneficial to others, so I write them with the intention of a public audience reading them.

For those who don’t know, I do daily, weekly, and monthly versions of this reflection process.

  • Daily journal entries – to record my activities and thoughts for each
  • Weekly reviews – I examine the highlights of my week as well as track my progress on personal projects
  • Monthly retrospectives – focus mostly on big highlights and life lessons I’ve learned that month

This yearly reflection is a culmination of all three of these at a higher level.

Writing this reflection is an arduous process because I have to comb through all my reflections and synthesize them into something like an annual report.

The reason I make this public is to

  • Share with my friends and family what I’ve been up to
  • Keep myself accountable with my big goals
  • Share the life lessons I’ve learned along the way
  • Hopefully inspire others to adopt a mindset of gratitude and illustrate the value of continuous self-reflection

Past Years In Review:

This year, I’ve also separated out my 2020 Life Lessons section into a separate post as a sort of addendum to this main post.

Continue reading “A Year in Review: 2020”

2020 Year in Review: Life Lessons on Success, Relationships, and Well-Being

What 2020 has taught me about success, people, and my well-being.

The best way to reflect is to sit on a couple of stools in a park while dressed like a flower boy in a wedding

At the end of every “Year in Review” mega-post, I compile a list of all the major Life Lessons I’ve learned that year. Last year, I started the tradition of separating this into a separate post from the main 2020 Year In Review post.

In compiling these lessons, I noticed they fell into 3 major categories and have grouped them accordingly:

  • Career & Success
  • People & Relationships
  • Health & Well-Being

Feel free to skip to the sections most interesting or relevant to you. Or just go through them all if you’re feeling in the mood.

Continue reading “2020 Year in Review: Life Lessons on Success, Relationships, and Well-Being”

3 Tips for Being an Effective Agile Scrum Master

How to thrive as a scrum master in an agile scrum team.

I’ve been a Scrum Master for almost 4 years working with 10 different teams across 3 different company cultures.

No matter the product, business area, or company environment, there are several common skills needed to be an effective scrum master and help your team deliver value to the customers.

Here are three of the biggest tips for helping your scrum teams thrive.

Continue reading “3 Tips for Being an Effective Agile Scrum Master”

2019 Year in Review: Self-Discovery, Life Lessons & Dating Insights

What 2019 has taught me about life, people, dating, and myself.

This is the face I make when I’m thinking… thinking about what face I should make for this photo.

At the end of every “Year in Review” mega-post, I compile a list of all the major Life Lessons I’ve learned that year. For 2019, I realized that this list ended up becoming longer than the rest of the blog post. Therefore, I decided to separate them out as a sort of addendum to the main post.

In compiling these lessons, I noticed they fell into 4 major categories and have grouped them accordingly:

  • Principles of Life and Growth
  • What I’ve Learned About Myself
  • People Skills & Leadership
  • Dating & Relationships

Feel free to skip to the sections most interesting or relevant to you. Or just go through them all if you’re feeling in the “personal development” mood today.

Continue reading “2019 Year in Review: Self-Discovery, Life Lessons & Dating Insights”

A Year in Review: 2019

Blessings, achievements, goals, and life lessons of the past year

Why Am I Writing This?

Ever since 2016, I started doing these yearly reviews to reflect on the past year. These are mostly for myself as a way to remember what has happened, what I have achieved, and prepare for the upcoming year. It is also a great place for me to express my gratitude for everything in the past year, as gratitude is a huge cornerstone of my reflection process.

For those of you who know me personally, you may know that I do daily, weekly, and monthly versions of this reflection process. I have daily journals to record my activities and thoughts of the day. I have a weekly review where I examine the highlights of my week as well as track my progress on personal goals. My monthly retrospectives focus mostly on big highlights and life lessons I’ve learned that month. This yearly reflection is a culmination of all three of those.

That’s also why it takes me almost 2 months to prepare this yearly post (mostly due to procrastination lol). I comb through my reflections to summarize my year into main highlights and share insights I’ve learned throughout the year.

My intent with making this public is to share what I’ve been up to, share some of my wins, be honest about my losses, keep myself accountable for my big goals, and hopefully inspire others to adopt a mindset of gratitude and reflection in their own lives.

Past Years In Review:

This year, I’ve also separated out my 2019 Life Lessons section into a separate post as a sort of addendum to this main post. Feel free to check it out if you want to hear about what I’ve learned this past year, both from books and from learning the hard way: experience.

Continue reading “A Year in Review: 2019”

TOTD: How to make yourself eat healthier 🥗

My thoughts on how these two relate.

In this Thought of the Day, I discuss:

  • The movie The Game Changers & plant-based diets
  • Why emotions and feelings play a big role in our eating habits
  • Changing your mindset to change your diet

As usual, please let me know your thoughts in the comments, suggestions for future videos, or even if you disagree! I read and respond to every comment 🙂

One-time donation! 🙂

If you enjoy my content, please consider donating a small amount to my blog. I really enjoy creating free book notes and other works that people can hopefully get value out of. Your small donation will help me with the costs to maintain my website. Every donation is greatly appreciated!

$2.00

TOTD: Why we don’t like being told what to do 🙅‍♂️

My thoughts on ego and adapting to change.

In this Thought of the Day, I discuss:

  • Why I’m skeptical of “traditions”
  • Why we think we’re open-minded when we really aren’t
  • When we make excuses for not changing

As usual, please let me know your thoughts in the comments, suggestions for future videos, or even if you disagree! I read and respond to every comment 🙂

One-time donation! 🙂

If you enjoy my content, please consider donating a small amount to my blog. I really enjoy creating free book notes and other works that people can hopefully get value out of. Your small donation will help me with the costs to maintain my website. Every donation is greatly appreciated!

$2.00

TOTD: My high school classmate went to prison ⚰️

How we should respond when we hear about someone’s mistake.

In this Thought of the Day, I discuss:

  • Something terrible that my old classmate was involved in
  • How we react when someone does something we see is wrong
  • Empathy and seeking to understand should always be the first response

As usual, please let me know your thoughts in the comments, suggestions for future videos, or even if you disagree! I read and respond to every comment 🙂

One-time donation! 🙂

If you enjoy my content, please consider donating a small amount to my blog. I really enjoy creating free book notes and other works that people can hopefully get value out of. Your small donation will help me with the costs to maintain my website. Every donation is greatly appreciated!

$2.00