At the end of every year I dedicate an evening to review the results of the past year, and then draw the plans for the upcoming one. I have been doing it for quite a while now, always keeping my lists in dedicated notebooks.
This is how I can always go in past and see what were my resolutions and dreams, say, seven years ago. I consider resolution lists to be very helpful to me. And New Year is a perfect occasion to practice resolution building and result harvesting of the last year’s goals.
I recognize it would be even more useful to re-consider one’s resolutions every quartile, if not every month. But our lives are ofter busy and so it is not always easy to decide what days should be marked as resolution days. Meanwhile, the New Year eve will always remain one of the main holidays. A day when you could spend couple hours contemplating and thinking over your future with detail.
In this blog post, I am going to share a part of my resolution list. I want to dedicate a certain portions of resolutions to my professional development and growth. This is why, I thought, it would be relevant to place my list here.
But before I start with the resolutions, I am going to review my last year’s achievements, which, I think, are related to my professional life.
Achievements of 2015
One of the main achievements was getting my new job, and carry it on successfully during my first year. Not only it all came true, but I was also able to learn so much and improve myself, that the year seemed to pass very successful.
As a result, at the beginning of the New Year I had new opportunities laid out before me, as well as new career visions and goals defined. And the latter plays a really significant role for me, because there were times in my career when I was very uncertain about my future career and did not understand what I want to do with my life.
The year 2015 really helped me to know myself better and understand my motivations and my likes. It was a combination of many factors such as smart teachers, the right books, good friends and hard work that helped me to find myself. I was able to finally define my long-term career goals which were never too clear for me.
Another achievement is that I started my professionall blog. And I know it is going to be beneficial not only for my career, but also for my own growth since your understanding expands when you try to pass your knowledge and discoveries by teaching in any form (written or oral).
The improved understanding might not seem so significant until you actually try to explain some material by your own words. This gives so many new insights into the topic that your general understanding grows as well. In addition, the blog allows to document the new material so that when you need it again for another task in the future, you can easily find it in your blog.
Since it was also a year I started to work in the US, I believe, I also learned a lot and improved my emotional intelligence and working ethic. I was able to acknowledge the necessity to obtain and polish those skills as crucial in order to be professional in my area.
Some traits such as shyness, diffidence, bad communication patterns, delayed deadlines were replaced by initiative, confidence, emphasis on quality, better social skills and discipline. I still need to constantly work on myself and improve those skills, but it felt like I had a very good start.
Resolutions for 2016
Here I will provide my professional resolutions that will, hopefully, motivate me and guide me in the right direction. I commit to:
- Keep this blog updated by posting every week a tutorial (technical material) or a blog post (non-technical article).
- Keep improving at my work by constantly learning new technologies, or deepened an already existing knowledge on certain technology. Then share my discoveries in this blog.
- Advance in my work project and bring it to fruition. This includes: alpha, beta and first official releases, user input feedback incorporation, organization of demonstration databases (samples), attracting more contributors.
- Improve my coding skills, style and design patterns. This point is closely related to the previous one since it will be of great use when it is time to prepare first releases.
- Attend one or two art-related classes. This one might not seem related at all, however, I was given it as an advice in order to stimulate the right side of my brain. There are times when I have to struggle and search for new ideas when trying to solve a problem. Very often I find solutions outside of my office in very unexpected places. Possibly, doing some art activity would engage unused parts of brain to interact and bring solutions sooner.
- Keep on doing sport activities such as climbing and running as I was doing them the last year. Software development assumes spending much of your time in a chair in front of your computer. Without proper exercise routine, it might feel depressing spending majority of your life physically inactive (not to mention the physical benefits).
- Start learning forth language while maintaining my third one (French). See point 5 for how is it related to my professional development. It’s been a while I was looking towards Japanese language. Maybe it is the year to start taking it more seriously?
- Uncover more job opportunities and expand my network. My current job is a contract job. While I enjoy it, I feel it would be nice to land on a constant-time job for the future with an exciting project or area to work on.
I am very excited about the New Year. Not only it is a holiday, but also because it is landmark for me to stop and think carefully about my future and my past. And also to decide what I want to be in the future.
I believe your past thoughts define who you are. Your today’s thoughts define who you will be in the future. Take your future in your hands, and do not leave it to a chance. It is so much more fun this way.