2016 was a big year for me. I lived in a new, very different city for over a year (San Francisco), made a ton of new friends, strengthened friendships across coasts, moved in with an amazing girl (and she still actually likes me), ran a 50K (32mi ish, a distance I never thought I’d run a few years ago), and finally joined TechShop. This has been one of my favorite and happiest years ever so I want to keep this momentum going in 2017 and accelerate into 2018, which not totally unrelated, will be the year I turn 30.
I’ve been doing a lot of thinking about this in the past few months and I’m going to focus on three main areas in 2017: Intelligence, Creativity, and Exploration.
If you read closely to my introduction, you may notice none of the accomplishments I mentioned have anything to do with my career, so one of my biggest goals will be learn new things that will open up new career paths for me.
From a young age, I’ve been interested in science. My grandfather, uncle, and father were all engineers and/or computer programmers so I’ve followed in their footsteps, Electrical Engineer by college degree and programmer by current trade. This new year, I want to explore new programming languages and improve my skills in the ones I love. Haskell and functional programming in general will take front seat. Also, I want to learn Python since most of the science community has adopted it as their main tool. I want apply these to new concepts as well, like machine learning, probabilistic programming, and data science which are all really hot now and have been for some time.
I haven’t used my Electrical Engineering degree since graduation but do find a small side project to get into every year. This year, I’d like to explore more artistic creations. Combining light and color with environment sensor input could make for some really neat interactive art and has been something I’ve thought of for a long time now. Time to get after it!
Beyond my career, I’m going to get better at that basic human stuff too. Doing a better job at keeping up with current events including reading more fact-based news and maybe even a bit of partisan-based news to understand other people’s views. Getting better at managing my finances is something I’ve been doing but could still use a bit of work. Finally, I’m going to write more for my blog or other blogs to improve my typing and writing ability (this is actually my first blog post that isn’t for my company).
OK, OK. Enough of the boring stuff. Onto the things I’m looking forward to the most.
I joined a co-op, maker space called TechShop 4 months ago and I’ve loved every moment of being there, creating sunglasses holders, a trunk, laser art, NP stencils, cutting boards, and holiday cards. To continue my passion, I bought myself a year membership with 6 months of unlimited safety courses (needed to use the machinery) and I’m most excited to get into metal working, welding, water cutting, CNC-ing, 3D printing, and screen printing. With access to all these great machines, I’ll be creating some awesome things. I’ve been slacking with posting my creations to Instagram so I’m setting a focus to take pictures and post all the cool stuff that comes out of this!
2016 saw my limits pushed with my first race longer than a half marathon and my first ultra marathon (30K and 50K). I loved every moment of these races and want to keep pushing my limits. I don’t think I’ll tackle anything longer than a 50K this year, but I do want to break a 3 hour 30K and a 6:30 50K (although, I would really love to break 6 hours too). Also, it’s been awhile since I’ve run anything short distance so I’m going to try and break my 5K PR as well (21:40).
With the recent move to SF, I didn’t travel much this past year, but I love traveling and want to visit some new places in 2017. When I travel to cities that have November Project tribes, I make it a point to be at the workouts. I’ve visited 14 tribes so far and my goal for the new year is to visit 3-5 new tribes! Currently on my bucket list: Seattle, Vancouver, Victoria, and Portland (been there but didn’t visit the tribe).
Finally, my last goal for 2017 … run a beer mile! I’ve been feeling the FOMO with everyone and their grandma posting about their beer mile fun times, but I seem to keep missing them so 2017 is the year!
If any of these goals resonate with you, contact me! I would love to have a buddy to keep me accountable. Together, let’s make 2017 awesome!