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”

Book notes: The Ride of a Lifetime by Robert Iger

The Ride of a Lifetime by Robert Iger book summary review and key ideas.

The Ride of a Lifetime: Lessons Learned from 15 years as CEO of the Walt Disney Company by Robert Iger

Synopsis:

“Robert Iger became CEO of The Walt Disney Company in 2005, during a difficult time. Competition was more intense than ever, and technology was changing faster than at any time in the company’s history. His vision came down to three clear ideas: Recommit to the concept that quality matters, embrace technology instead of fighting it, and think bigger – think global – and turn Disney into a stronger brand in international markets.

Fourteen years later, Disney is the largest, most admired media company in the world, counting Pixar, Marvel, Lucasfilm, and 21st Century Fox among its properties. Its value is nearly five times what it was when Iger took over, and he is recognized as one of the most innovative and successful CEOs of our era.

In The Ride of a Lifetime, Robert Iger shares the lessons he learned while running Disney and leading its 220,000-plus employees, and he explores the principles that are necessary for true leadership, including:

  • Optimism. Even in the face of difficulty, an optimistic leader will find the path toward the best possible outcome and focus on that, rather than give in to pessimism and blaming.
  • Courage. Leaders have to be willing to take risks and place big bets. Fear of failure destroys creativity.
  • Decisiveness. All decisions, no matter how difficult, can be made on a timely basis. Indecisiveness is both wasteful and destructive to morale.
  • Fairness. Treat people decently, with empathy, and be accessible to them.
Continue reading “Book notes: The Ride of a Lifetime by Robert Iger”

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”

Book notes: The Path Made Clear by Oprah Winfrey

The Path Made Clear by Oprah Winfrey book summary review and key ideas.

The Path Made Clear: Discovering Your Life’s Direction and Purpose by Oprah Winfrey

Synopsis:

“Everyone has a purpose. And, according to Oprah Winfrey, “Your real job in life is to figure out as soon as possible what that is, who you are meant to be, and begin to honor your calling in the best way possible.”

That journey starts right here.

In her latest audiobook, The Path Made Clear, Oprah shares what she sees as a guide for activating your deepest vision of yourself, offering the framework for creating not just a life of success, but one of significance. The audiobook’s 10 chapters are organized to help you recognize the important milestones along the road to self-discovery, laying out what you really need in order to achieve personal contentment and what life’s detours are there to teach us.

Oprah opens each chapter by sharing her own key lessons and the personal stories that helped set the course for her best life. She then brings together wisdom and insights from luminaries in a wide array of fields, inspiring listeners to consider what they’re meant to do in the world and how to pursue it with passion and focus. These renowned figures share the greatest lessons from their own journeys toward a life filled with purpose.

The Path Made Clear provides listeners with a valuable resource for achieving a life lived in service of your calling – whatever it may be.” -Audible

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10 Tips to Surviving a Dance Class

How to survive a dance class for beginners.

I’ve been teaching dance as an instructor for many years now. I’ve taught hip hop, freestyle popping, and more recently K-POP. Many of my current students are beginners, or haven’t been dancing for very long. Many times, people I know who are interested in learning how to dance will ask me about taking class and some tips I have for them.

I wish I had a guide when I first started taking dance classes and one I could pass on to my new students. Therefore, I decided to create one.

Here’s my list of top 10 things to note if you plan on taking your first dance class.

Continue reading “10 Tips to Surviving a Dance Class”

Book notes: Girl, Wash Your Face by Rachel Hollis

Girl, Wash Your Face by Rachel Hollis book review summary and key ideas.

Girl, Wash Your Face: Stop Believing the Lies About Who You Are So You Can Become Who You Were Meant to Be by Rachel Hollis

Synopsis:

“As the founder of the lifestyle website TheChicSite.com and CEO of her own media company, Rachel Hollis developed an immense online community by sharing tips for better living while fearlessly revealing the messiness of her own life. Now, in this challenging and inspiring new book, Rachel exposes the 20 lies and misconceptions that too often hold us back from living joyfully and productively, lies we’ve told ourselves so often we don’t even hear them anymore.

Continue reading “Book notes: Girl, Wash Your Face by Rachel Hollis”