Is it too early to start writing reflection posts on 2016? Afterall, it’s been somewhat of a rollercoaster type of year – a year when all of the things we joked about, or consider to be unthinkable basically happened. I know I’m not in the minority when I say that all I want to do is close the book on this chapter and move on.
Despite the insanity that is 2016, this year has been a personal best. It’s been a year of setting up good / healthy habits and ridding myself of some old, unproductive ones. I don’t know about you but I’m seriously stoked to see what 2017 has in store for all of us.
Read More: 25 Things Before 25
I started 2016 very productively, accomplishing two tasks that have been on my list for some time: 1) refinishing my bedroom and 2) taking that Advanced Photography / Travel Photography classes that set the year up very nicely. Having done these two things within the first 2 weeks of the new year gave me an “energy boost”, confidence and motivation that I can cross of many more things on my list.
I had this mindset that 2016 was going to be the year that I had to work on myself – afterall, I was going to hit my quarter-century this year. What better timing to invest in myself? I posted my 25 Things Before 25 which I’ve continually updated and gone back to. I also (sporadically) tried to post my progress as a way to “check in” and hold myself accountable which I think was paramount to keeping myself on track. One such post was the 6/12 | New Year’s Resolution Check In post.
On a side note, I hope you guys are enjoying the new layout! It took a while to get set up and finish but I hope you like the update! There may be some errors / non-working links, but I am working to get that done asap! Appreciate your support and patience!
I thought I would do a quick review of the goals I set for myself at the beginning / throughout this year. Of the 25 things I want to achieve from this post 25 Things Before 25. I managed to successfully complete 10 from the 25 things I wanted to achieve. It’s not the best “number” per se but I believe in quality over quantity achievements, and a lot of my 25 before 25 were long-term goals (i.e. buying a house)!
1. Complete my 25 countries to visit / go before 25. I was very lucky to have visited 27 countries by October! I’m really eager for all the travels that will be happening in 2017 onwards!
2. Go at least somewhere new and adventurous every year. 2016 was another adventure – I’d say South Africa and Iceland were the highlights of my year!
3. Read at least 1 new book every month. I would give myself half a point for this because I go through moments where I read 2-3 books / month and then nothing for a couple of months. I think this year, I finished reading a measly 9 new books this year so I’ll have to work a bit more for next year. If it counts, my pre-Christmas tradition involves re-reading the entire Harry Potter series, so that adds another 7 books and 8 movies ????
4. Do more charity/fundraising activities. Last year I did the Ride for Heart and loved the experience! This year I repeated the experience and got a medal to take home! I want to continue doing more similar fundraising activities next year!
5. Save more than you spend! Definitely ticked this off. My holiday spending is actually far below what I’ve spent in previous years – I don’t foresee myself being broke in January – YES! Plus, adding up how much I spent per trip makes me so much more confident in my budgeting skills!
6. Go back to Africa. Found myself in South Africa again in May 2016.
7. Learn photography and be able to document my life with my little-used DSLR. I think I’m a lot more comfortable with my DSLR’s now – I took it with me during my South Africa safari trip and looking forward to getting a few new lenses during the holidays to build my collection. That said, I also managed to finish a travel photography course, and am excited to put many of the things I’ve learned into practice!
8. Get LASIK or Vision Shaping Treatment done. I ended up getting VST done since I’m too much of a chicken to get laser eye surgery. It’s been a life-changer, particularly considering how easy, painless, and fuss-free it is! I don’t have to worry about my lenses coming off while I’m swimming or at the beach. If you’re curious about the VST process and what it is, let me know in the comment section below!
9. Take time off to travel full-time! October was an insane month – I took off the entire month to travel to 5 countries! It was a taste of what permanent travelling looks like and I want to get on it!!
10. Get certified in coding. This was a bit last minute, but once I finish my exam in mid-December, I’ll have this certification for LinkedIn and resume!
A few other things I accomplished in 2016!
11. Got my PADI Certification. I can officially go scuba diving anywhere in the world with my certification! This has been on my bucket list for some time but never got around to doing it because of how expensive it is! I highly recommend getting this done if it’s been on your list!
12. Took my mom to her first blogging event. My mama went to her first blogging event and got drunk with happiness and I am so happy about it! I had the opportunity to bring a +1 to a recent Guerlain event and I decided to take my mama along. My mom has never been to one of these events before (She missed out on the Clarins Open Spa one!) and I wanted to treat her to a girls night! Needless to say, she loved it!
13. I hit the 1100 readers mark on Bloglovin’! I know most would say that 1K followers isn’t too many anymore, but I feel strongly about the friends I’ve made through this platform and am so grateful for the opportunity to connect and grow this wonderful community! Thank you all for making 1K+ possible!!
I think I will end up adding to this post over the next couple of weeks. What were some of your favourite memories of 2016?