2009 Year in Review

So the decade is coming to an end, it’s been a great year.

Quick post that’s a review of the year in terms of personal experience.

Joined Facebook

It took me a while and it was purely out of stubborness. I just didn’t want to go through an entire profile creating, finding friends, etc etc, as I’d done it twice already, when i was on Friendster (remember friendster?) then on Myspace (remember Myspace?).   It is a valuble resource for sure for linking up with friends and for setting up or finding events.   However, it is a great time waster too and it can present an illusion fo real social interaction.   It is a balancing act, I suppose it’s in the spirit you use it.  I’ve discovered a lot about people, for example a former high school friend is a hip-hop star in his country.  However, also, it is a place of ego validation, for better or worse  like having thousands of pictures of yourself, or having bloated friends lists of people that are not really your friends.

Facebook friends more important than actual real friends?

But yes, in 2009 I finally created an account.  I’m going to reevaluate how I use it though 🙂

Lost 20 pounds

Starting from the beginning of the year to the middle of February I’d lost 20 pounds.  All I did was reduce sugar drinks to one a day,  reduce my intake of carbohydrates, and try and reduced processed stuff. No charts, no lists, no calorie counting.   I even allowed one cheat day, which is to say on Saturday, I eat whatever I want in whatever quantity. Tha’ts ALL I did.  I actually started it out as an experiment.  I kind of faded a little bit in the middle of the year with the wedding and the trip, but this is something I’ll revist next year, and there’s more to it than looking good or being in shape, it’s about treating your body like the temple that it is.  I’ll talk about it in my 2010 post.

My lesson from this experience was how small things can have big effects.  Malcom Gladwell talks about that in Tipping Point.

Obama’s Inauguration

One hour to get out of the metro on Inauguration Day

The year begun with me being a part of History.  Together with a few friends we braved arctic weather conditions to watch Obama get sworn in Washington, D.C. as the first African-American US president.  It is the sort of event that you gather you will gather your grand children around the fireplace and talk to them about in 50 years.

I just do not understand those that missed it because it was “too cold”, sometimes as people we’re guilty of failing to look beyond see-level, too often we’re content to lose the forest for a few trees.  Anyway, the frozen fingers, being part of the mobs in streets, walking in downtown DC without vehicles, etc. all added to the experience.

Pre-Wedding Event & Wedding

The other big event of the year was the fairytale wedding in Italy,  if you’re my facebook friend there’s many pictures from friends that were part of the experience.  I’ve also written about it here:   https://superseiyan.wordpress.com/2009/08/22/fairytale-wedding-la-citta-eterna/   For the better half of the year, this was the main focus but all went well and I became a husband.

What I learnt:

1. Dreams come true. But I have to dream it first, and DO SOMETHING ABOUT IT.

2. I cannot achieve anything grand by myself.

3. Pick your battles.  Most people don’t do that.  They think they do but they don’t.  Lots of stuff in planning the wedding I deferred to others and let them get their way on the details.

4. Keep the process joyful. For me I viewed the late nights and the planning as an adventure.  Not as a huge burden that I sulked about.

 

Got to Fly in First Class

I flew in first class.  Was just an unexpected bonus, it’s something I had expected I’d do one day in my life, but I’m determined that that will not be the last time.  My thinking is that if a CEO of JoeCompany is good enough to fly in first class so are you and me.  It’s a matter of us becoming the type of person that would command a first class seat.

in Lots of private space, personal attention and special first class goodies. Called "L'Espace Premier"

Roma, La Citta Bella

This it’s own experience, being in Italy, it just happened to be on the same trip with which I wedded.  Being in the Beatiful City stoked my passion for travel.  I wish I could capture the feelings of the trip into a bottle.  Being there with friends was double blessing. I spoke about this as well in a previous blog post which you can read here: https://superseiyan.wordpress.com/2009/08/30/italy-trip-cont-plus-a-new-understanding-on-the-importance-of-travel/

What I took from this was just how much of a world there is out there ready for all of us to experience.

Decided to go back to School

I have decided to go back to school next year.   I’d like to go further in a career in the field of International Affairs.   Ultimately, I feel it’s a great vehicle to impact some people in the world (cliche I know), travel, achieve intellectual stimulation and develop a great circle of friends.  This is in process and I’m still in the application process, so it’s not done, but late this year was when I decided to finally put action towards this goal.

 

Other miscellenous comments on 2009:

Read some great books

I like to read a lot, in terms of books I slowed down a little this year.  Didn’t read as much as the previous year, but I’d like to mention two books that were top notch:

Personal Development for Smart People by Steve Pavlina

I like this book because it gives a practical and holistic approach to self-development.  It’s not wish-washy, and annoyingly generic.  Too many self-development books essentially say “be happy, be positive, don’t forget to smile” and they leave it at that.  This book covers everything from finances to relationships,

Four Hour Work Week by Tim Ferris

I like this book because his approach to a succesful life once again is holistic.  Also it’s realistic. And lastly, he is against compromise.  I do not like the concept of ‘delayed gratification’ as too often it becomes permanently delayed gratification.  In this book, basically Ferris talks about how to have live your life without endlessly postponing everything you want to do.

Too be continued in the next blog, 2010 and beyond.  I’ll talk about habits, and achievements I’d like for next year.

Exit Question:  What were your experiences in the year?  What defined the ending decade, the 00s for you?

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