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Reflections on 2022

·3 mins

2022 is in the books: a year of highs, lows, breaking through comfort zones, and losing ground on things I’d been working on in past years.

I’m recognizing that in a broader sense, I can only focus on one or two areas at a time. In past years, it’s been one or some of: losing weight, improving physical shape/condition, programming skill/personal projects, social/friends. This year it seems that my gains were in career development and networking/notability, and I lost ground in weight, friend networks, and in personal projects. It seems obvious that we can only prioritize one or two things at a time, but I’m frustrated that it feels out of my control to choose what those things are, and I’m frustrated that it’s so all-or-nothing in terms of past progress.

The biggest story of the year was leaving Caivan in June to join Zelus Soccer in August. I felt a lot of comfort in the environment and friends at Caivan, but also a growing sense of inertia and stagnation. Joining Zelus was awesome, despite a long and somewhat frustrating interview process, and it feels like I’ve hit the ground running there. It’s been really nice to be part of a data team, and I’ve felt challenged and valued for my skill set. I’ve enjoyed the increased flexibility in fully remote/async work as well as still having a close-knit small team environment.

I gave a talk at RStudio Conf this year! It was nerve-wracking but also immensely rewarding, and I think it was awesome to share about a topic I thought could benefit many R users: GitHub Actions and Releases - it’s been invaluable to the way nflverse works. I’m so glad to have met up with longtime online friends who are now just straight up friends: Joe, Maya, Tony, Asmae, Eric, Daniel, Tom, Jon, and so many more.

It was interesting to spend another summer away from rowing. In a bit of a change from the previous years, I lifted weights consistently (reaching new powerlifting personal bests!) and somewhat ate at a bulk along the way. I don’t think I’m happier for being stronger + slower + heavier. I also picked up some recreational flag football and ultimate frisbee leagues, those were largely pretty fun but not as socially connecting as I’d hoped.

I put a lot of things on hold this year, somehow no longer managing to find space in my energy budget to do things I’d been excited about - streaming and hobby programming projects both landed on the back burner and never made it back to top of mind despite being such focuses in previous years. I more or less only have good memories of those, but the inertia wall is the big stopper.

I travelled a lot this year! I made it to the French Alps in April with Mimio and friends, to DC in July for RStudio Conf, to Toulouse and Milan in August with Zelus, and to Pittsburgh in October for CMSAC. It’s more than I’ve travelled in years - even before the pandemic, I was pretty limited in vacation time and disposable income. The travel bug bit me pretty hard, and I’m already looking forward to travelling even more in 2023 - I’ve booked trips to Maine, Salt Lake City, and Austria in the first few months of the year. Really trying to take advantage of working remotely and asynchronously.

I tried to get more help for adhd, depression, and burnout this year, but things somewhat fell through during the job changeover and I’m embarrassed to admit that it’s mostly my own fault for dropping things. I want to do better at this, especially if it helps me avoid the lowest lows and keeps me on track.