Bygones and Resolutions

Bang on cue I’m back to updating this blog just as the year is up. I’ve written a little too much this year in various other places (finally!) and this blog has been poorly discarded in the process. Time to be more disciplined about this and provide content to the only person I know who regularly reads this blog (Hi KR! ).

New Year’s resolutions have seen their full lifecycle around me over the years: from they’re new, to they keep you motivated, to they’re too commonplace, they’re overrated, they’re impractical and annoying, they’re cliched and don’t work, and then to they do work but require dedication. I’m in that last camp now with the additional feature improvement of believing that my resolutions will hold up only when I’m in full swing on Jan 1st. So my resolutions begin in December.

In 2018, apart from work and family, I want to focus on five things to do for myself:

  1. Learn a new foreign language. I’ve been doing Spanish, Russian, and Japanese on and off, but I’ve finally decided that I’m better off doing Esperanto. The returns are faster and the community is incredibly close and helpful. Three days in and I no longer feel like a beginner. The language is just so incredibly easy! Mi amas Esperanton.
  2. Cook regularly. My aversion to cooking is a reflexive reaction to four months of trauma in the kitchen. It’s been a few years, time to get over it.
  3. Workout regularly. Yep, that one. This isn’t a weight loss goal, this is a habit forming fitness goal. I have been exercising relatively regularly last year till a sleepless-overworking spell took over. I’ve found my HG in functional training and going to Crossfit all the energy out of myself.
  4. Get back to my violin. It’s just as abandoned as this blog.
  5. Understand finance and investments and all related terms. My favorite joke when people talk about taxes is saying “I have a guy who does it for me.” They ask who and I say, “my dad.” Joke’s gotten old.

My five proudest moments/things from this year are:

  1. Understanding the science behind how body processes energy and stores fat. Having been a vehemently pro-carb “balanced-plate” person, I’ve since binged on research on metabolism, fat, sugar, fat loss vs weight loss and finally have understood some essentials: fat is good for the body, it’s okay to cut off food groups for a limited period of time under close monitoring, diets that are not lifestyle changes are not sustainable, anything that says “detox” or “cleanse” is a scam (instead drink water, drink water, drink water), and most importantly, exercise does not help you lose weight. It’s always the food. Now I know exactly what effect will bear out on me when I consume which food. It’s great.
  2. Understanding the science behind how our skin works and the chemistry of skincare. After a dear friend introduced me to Korean skincare, my whole approach towards how I treat my skin has changed. My trusted Nivea face creams of ten years? LOL, move over. In come molecular sizes, oleic and linoleic acids, toners, AHA, BHA, serums, and low pH gels. It is a big deal, okay? Having a glowy, even complexion that looks healthy is every woman’s dream.
  3. Growing a thick skin to online hate and bullying. 2014 was my worst year when I faced such a deluge of online bullying that I used to actually cry in real life. It was ridiculous and so painful that anonymous men sitting behind anonymous accounts ganging up on people online pretending to be righteous and intelligent affected me so much. Somehow, the more commonplace the targeting became, the more I fought back by staying silent and not making foolish retorts. The more I observed them, the more I realized just how juvenile and silly they can be. Once I realized that they aren’t there to make the world a better place and only take pleasure in bringing people down, I got over it. Now I’m confident enough to show them the mirror online or just mute and let them scream into the void. Sigh, Twitter problems.
  4. Became a cat person. I am definitely getting a cat before a dog, take note future housemate. I’m also a dog person. And a tortoise person. And a fish person. And a plant person.
  5. This piece I wrote on the first observed gravitational wave/gamma ray burst. I’m so fiercely proud of this piece. A lot of effort went into it. I think I spoke to ten scientists back-to-back and worked on it for three straight days. Nearly half the of all that I know about relativity, I learned while working on it. I need that flow consistently. Now if only I could get over impostor syndrome…

Most importantly though, I learned a lot about my own self this year. I know my inconsistencies and where I fall short. I’m also confident about things I know I’m good at! As ever, I’m eternally grateful for the wonderful people in my life, my family, and social media that has taught me so many things, connected me with so many people, and gets me work. See you on the other side of the year!

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