2022 in One Word: Permachange

Life, work, YouTube, content creation, and plan for 2023

2022 end-of-year review — image by the author

In software development, we have a retrospective session after each sprint.

The year in review is similar to a retro. So it makes perfect sense to me to look back at the past year and plan for the next one.

2022: what a year it has been.

What I usually do during an end-of-year review

Reflect on accomplishments

Review what I achieved over the past year and celebrate successes.

Identify areas of growth

I note which areas need improvement or have room for development and set goals to work towards them in the coming year. I identify areas I care about and want to develop.

Look ahead

I create a plan for the upcoming year that takes into account any changes or improvements identified in the review process. I set short-term and long-term goals that can help keep me on track to reach my objectives.

Because I work in tech, I personally like to set SMART goals when possible, even when it’s about my personal life.

I wrote a more detailed article about this a while back.

Year compass

The method outlined above was exactly my way of reviewing my years before finding Year Compass.

I found Year Compass last year and waited for nearly a whole year to try it out.

Studies like this show that most people abandon their new year’s resolutions by the 19th of January.

Yes. That’s true. It’s not even 3 weeks!

Ideal self

Why is it so hard to stick to a new year’s resolution? I possibly don’t have the right answer, but it might have something to do with us setting these goals thinking of what our ideal self would do.

And…let’s be honest here. How many of us behave how our ideal self would behave all the time?

I know I don’t.

I liked the idea of having a plan for an ideal self and a less ideal self mentioned in this video, so I came up with my version for 2023.

Setting up goals with a system

I ask 2 questions:

  1. What would my ideal self create or do?
  2. What would my less ideal self create or do?
Category. Ideal me. Less ideal self — screenshot by the author

Then I write down a rough roadmap to achieve the goals (adding some flexibility):

Category. Ideal me. Time required — screenshot by the author

Once I lay it down like that, I can finally see if the goals are realistic and feasible. If they are not, I adjust expectations according to the time I can allocate for certain activities. While I’m doing it, I also take a look at my calendar.

My weekly schedule isn’t complicated at all. According to my goals, my week should look like this:

calendar schedule, displayed timeblocks
My calendar schedule for 2023 — screenshot by the author

I can already see that something needs to give. I might not be able to focus on drawing much, or my writing & exercising will be impacted negatively.

When I look at my schedule laid out like this, I can see I won’t be able to cook every day. So I might rely on ordering something healthy a couple of times a week — which is okay.

I can already see if I’d also like to have a social life of some sort, I might not be able to create digital products that much.

I find it useful to see it like that so that I can be more realistic with my goals and schedules.

Medium-ideal self

That’s when my medium-ideal self comes in.

My medium-ideal self won’t be ideal, but she also won’t be my worst self.

I’ll explain it through an example.

What it’ll mean for YouTube:

  • Ideal self creates 2 videos per week (1 long form, 1 short form)
  • Less ideal self (worst self) creates 1 video a month (1 short)
  • Medium-ideal self creates more than 1 video a month (1 long form, 1 short form at least) but fewer than 8 videos a month

What my medium ideal self can achieve will be somewhere between my ideal and less ideal me:

Category. Ideal me. Less ideal self. System. Rules — screenshot by the author

The video above also mentions adding rules for yourself and the environment if it makes sense.

I’ll just assume I always have a clean desk when I write.

I won’t multitask (so I try to create a distraction-free environment), and I only do one thing at a time. For instance, when I’m in the gym, I don’t listen to a podcast because that distracts me from exercising and focusing on the muscle-mind connection.

End of year review — 2022

Some of the highlights I accomplished this year:

  1. I became debt-free.
  2. Published my first book on UX design. Yay!
  3. I moved to Canada from New Zealand

I didn’t achieve one of my goals from last year, sadly. I wanted to focus on upskilling myself in video editing, but I couldn’t find the time to do it. So I’ll carry through that goal to 2023 because it’s still important to me.

Goals for 2023

I did an end-of-year review using Year Compass and set some more plans for 2023 (considering what my medium-ideal self can accomplish).

Here’s my list:

  • write 1–2 hrs every day
  • publish an article weekly
  • create 1–4 YouTube vid/month
  • get better at video editing
  • be a better public speaker
  • be a better presenter
  • eat more greens
  • exercise during lunch break or after work
  • start doodling again
  • don’t force relationships

If you’re interested in me talking about it and seeing my end-of-year review of 2022; I link my video here: