Reviewing 2022

Picture of a calendar with January 2020 showing
Photo by Nathan Dumlao / Unsplash

Hello everyone,

My publishing has not been great over the last month, to say the least. With exams and Christmas followed by an intense work week in Lyon, it has been hard to find the time and energy to sit down and write and publish a blog post. Hopefully, this will change now. I am going to try and establish more of a writing habit every day by using the 30-for-30 framework. This means doing something for 30 minutes every day for 30 days straight. For me, this is going to be writing. I will say at the start that I may fail once but inspired by Matt D'Avella's video that be found below or here, I will use his "Two Day Rule" meaning I will never miss twice in a row. I feel like this is a fair goal and I feel good about doing it.

I recently returned home from Lyon and had a midterm week in the exchange program Unitech where I am a participant. The week was focused on a case that I and three other students have been working on together with Hilti VF. Our case revolves around sustainability work in a smaller but quickly growing manufacturing company. We made a lot of progress in the week, it was great to get a lot of work in, but the days were long so I was quite exhausted after the week. Especially because the Gothenburg-Lyon connections were not the best. We spent 12-14 hours both ways. After having finished my semester at Trinity College in Dublin and this week in Lyon I now have three weeks at home before moving to Switzerland to begin my 6-month internship in February. It is exciting to go on this new adventure but it feels a bit strange to be home for only a month before I leave again.

Annual Review

Inspired by Sahil Bloom and the tweet below I decided to create an annual review of 2022. I took inspiration from Sahil but also included some of my thoughts. Down below you can find my annual review. I would be very interested if anyone reading this does an annual review. If so please reach out to me, I would enjoy learning of the similarities/differences in our approaches, or if it revealed something special or any other interesting thought that it sparked.

Things I Want to Keep Doing

This was originally going to be one thing, but I have two things I felt I have done well in recent months and want to keep doing: working out and writing online. Working out I feel like I got into a good rhythm in November and have been able to keep it up quite well. Most weeks I can work out three times which feels like a good pace. Keeping this up will make all the other parts of my life better. A healthy body and mind make life a lot more enjoyable.

The second thing I want to keep doing is writing and publishing online. I got started in October and kept it up well for 8 weeks but then I have now fallen off a little with Christmas. I am going to get back on the horse now in 2023. Included in this will also be more structured tweeting. This will allow me to publish more often and try out thoughts and lower the barrier for publishing. You need many reps to become better and Twitter can be helpful in that. Hopefully tweeting more can also be an effective way to reach a bigger audience too. This is not my main focus but something that intrigues me.

One Thing I Want to Do Less of

Drink alcohol. I don’t necessarily view alcohol as a net negative in life, I can count plenty of great moments in my life where alcohol was involved but I think it would be beneficial to decrease my intake slightly. Especially from a health and fitness perspective, but also because it feels like you are "stealing" joy from the next day in the form of a hangover/bad sleep. Alcohol contains both useless calories and is a trigger for bad eating habits in myself. Both when drinking and the day after I tend to make worse food choices. I am not entirely sure what this will look like but I feel like drinking alcohol-free options more often will be beneficial.

One Thing I Have Learned

This is an excerpt from a daily writing session I had some weeks ago. I had a realization regarding routines.

"I love routines, but I hate implementing them myself. Recently it struck me that I am at my best when I have routines to stick to, but unfortunately, I am not very good at creating my routines. When I am working 9-5 it is much easier to create a day of routines because I know what most days look like. At the same time, the routines come at the cost of novelty. I need to probably create routines that are beneficial for me like working out and/or reading. Because I don't want life flashing by, but at the same time I need to get shit done, and often if I don't have anything planned I might end up getting lethargic and just sitting around which is not good for anyone. "

Based on this I am going to try and implement more routines or habits if you will into my life. This way I have something to lean back on when the world around me is disorganized. This is not to say I will not enjoy having time off or relaxing. The thing for me is that sometimes when I have time off I end up taking it too far and not even doing the things I want to do or find fun doing. I need a nudge to get me to do it.

PS. I realized as I used the word nudge everyone might not have heard of it in terms of behaviors. A nudge is a small act or thing that will influence your decision positively. I highly recommend Richard H. Thaler and Cass R. Sunstein's book "Nudge" if you want to learn more, it is an interesting read.

One Thing I Want to Start Doing

During 2023 I want to go on more adventures. What do I mean by adventures? It is purposefully vague but one thing is that I want to be more active during my 6 months in Switzerland. I had a great time in Dublin, but I feel like I became somewhat passive. I spent a lot of time in the city, doing things I could have easily done back home in Gothenburg. That is a part of living life in a new place but I wish I had gone on more trips and seen more things. In Switzerland, I am going to try and do more trips and see more of nature there! I also plan to go on some weekend trips to visit friends around central Europe!

Best Book I Read

Designing Your Life might be the most impactful book I have read this year. Although I am not finished it has already sparked plenty of interesting thoughts and discussions. I have started to think more about what I want my life to look like long term and how I can reach the goals I have. The fact that it recommends speaking to others about it has also inspired me to pose some of the questions in the book to loved ones which have been illuminating. In the coming days, I plan to complete an odyssey plan together with my brother and girlfriend. An Odyssey plan is a process where you plan out 3 different 5-year scenarios based on your career. The first one is the career trajectory you are on right now, the second one is what you would do if it was impossible to do the first option and the third and final one is what you would do if you did not have to worry about money or expectations. If you want to learn more about Odyssey plans you could read the book, or watch this primer on Youtube. Here is an example of an Odyssey Plan by the creator Ali Abdaal too.

Most Listened to Podcast

I believe the podcast I have listened to the most during 2022 has been My First Million, at first writing it off because of the corny name it has grown on me, and Sam Parr and Shaan Puri’s knowledgeable and entertaining show has been with me throughout the year. I have learned a bunch, been inspired to do more, and laughed a lot listening to their banter and guests sharing wisdom. The main message I have taken away from the podcast is that you can shape your path yourself. You do not have to follow a staked-out path or climb the corporate ladder, instead, you can work hard and make it on your own and that can even be useful if you want to make a corporate career too. Shaan has a work smarter not harder attitude combined with a love for the easy things in life, meanwhile, Sam is an intense guy who for me personifies ”work hard, play hard”. Working 80 hours weeks in entrepreneurial ventures and then taking 3 months off to go on a motorcycle adventure to Asia or something.
Big takeaways:

  • ”Work like a lion. Do a lot of work in shorter periods and then take time off.”
  • You can gain an edge by applying unconventional tactics. If it feels like you are in a losing battle by applying conventional tools try something different.
  • There are a million different ways to make money, you don't have to become a banker, a consultant, or a doctor. Plenty of people make money off of vending machines, fan fiction websites, or selling egg cartons. The opportunities are endless.

Final Takeaways

I hope you all had a great 2022 and will have an even better 2023. I am not one for new year's promises and the "New year, new me" thing, but I do believe it is as a good time as any to reflect on where you are and where you want to go. In that spirit, I have set some goals for 2023 that I will do my best to achieve. I will talk more about the goals next week and share my method for picking them and what my goals are. Let's have a great start to the year!