2020 Year in Review

Well… this year sucked! 😅

This year was a bit of a write-off, but I think it’s still worth keeping some details for posterity.

2020 Year in Review

Right, I should start off by saying right away that not much got done in terms of hitting any goals I had planned. Blame it on “these unprecedented times”, as they say. 😋

As I mentioned last year, I have my goals split into different categories. Let’s get started.

🏋️‍♂️ Health & Fitness

Ok, so between gyms being closed for aroung 4-5 months, and having to quarantine after visiting family things weren’t looking too good on the fitness side of things. I did manage to hit a couple of my gymnastic skills goals that I had been working on. But most of my goals were no where near completion. I did, however, managed to do some running while the gyms were closed. While I don’t see it as and efficient way of training it is a pretty effective way of training in specific cardio zones, and I did notice some improvements there. I’ll probably continue running for a while (as the gyms are still closed here 😒), but I might have to get a small pair of wireless earbuds to save me from the boredom.

Health-wise, I usually try to focus on good sleep and clean eating. And this year … it was generally alright. Working from home meant I no longer had to get up at 6am to hit the gym, so I did get a lot of sleep this year. As far as clean eating though, that’s another story. Being stuck at home for so long … let’s just say I got quite proficient at baking banana bread and brownies.

💼 Career & Dev stuff

Here things took a bit of tumble (again). When the pandemic hit my role was affected and I was put on furlough and later made redundant. While naturally frustrating, it was actually good to have some time off.

I managed to use some of that time to learn new things: I played around with MonoGame for a bit, built a small app in Angular, did an Azure course, and started learning some React. I also spent a lot of time looking for my next role. Hunting for a new job in the middle of a pandemic and while trying to change areas of focus was, to put it simply, complicated. I might detail that in a separate post. I did manage to find a new role which ticks all the boxes for me, so I’m looking forward to starting that in the new year.

💸 Finance

Well, with the furlough and redundancy this was always going to take a bit of a hit. In the end it turned out alright: with the pandemic there was nothing to do outside the house, so my expenses went down; the redundancy package was also quite welcome, and the (expensive) Disney holiday I booked last year was refunded. With all of that, I still managed to hit my savings goals so I’m quite happy with that.

🎈 Life

There were a few “bigger” things I managed to do before the pandemic started, and while the lockdown was (briefly) lifted. For gigs, got to see Caravan Palace live again, still amazing, but it’s sad that a couple of members have left the band now. In theatre I managed to see The Prince of Egypt, which was nice but not as good as other musicals, and a socially-distanced version of Jesus Christ Superstar (yes, again, I know, don’t judge me) which was brilliant. Also got to see Tenet in IMAX, which I always try to do when Nolan comes out with a new movie.

Other than this, there were a few socially distance gatherings throughout the pandemic, and a lot of zoom “socials”. I flew home twice, over the summer and over christmas and stayed over for a month each time … which passed suprisingly fast.

It was actually nice to have some time off from work, it was a shame there was a pandemic going on so I didn’t get to use much of that time in a way that I liked. So I spent some time learning new things and interviewing or browsing job boards. I also used some of my free time to catch up on my gaming, and, well, I played a lot of games.

📑 Conclusion

So not a great year, but not a bad one either. All the planning I did last year didn’t really take place, but managed to tick off a few things and at least my 2021 plan can be mostly recycled from there. Plus I’m starting a new role centered in tech that I love working with so that already one good thing to kick off the new year!

Filipe Duarte

Filipe Duarte
Hi, I’m Filipe. I’m a Software Engineer, from Portugal, currently living in London, building stuff for NewDay.

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