2022 in Review- 32 minutes read - 6713 words
Table Of Contents
Continuing the trend from last year in my 2021 Year in Review this is almost everything that happened to me in 2022. It’s a lot longer than last year’s one reflecting both that I did more things with COVID restrictions ending as well as taking more time to think about what I have been doing. Overall, 2022 was a volatile year for me. Some things went really well, my life went to absolute custard in the middle before it got better again.
In a similar vein to last year the general theme which has been coming through to me has been an appreciation for the longer term. In 2021 I started accepting my place in the world and who I am. In 2022 this has continued with a focus on making bigger, more ambitious, longer term plans in this case. My thinking has shifted towards making decisions that will be good to me over a 5+ year time horizon rather than the 1-2 year time horizon that I was working with beforehand. I can see this trend continuing into 2023.
Politically, I’ve gained a much healthier respect for traditions, family and institutions. I think this has originated from the realisation that trusting other people is a thoroughly atypical phenomenon. There are a lot of bad people out there in the world and I have been incredibly fortunate to have grown up in a high trust environment where this is not the case. I’ve begun to recognise just how incredibly precious these environments are and how they must be nurtured and protected at all costs. Broadly speaking, this has made me incredibly intolerant of anti-social behaviour which impacts that trust.
In the same vein I’ve also begun to reject Hedonism and the Hedonic Treadmill in particular. I don’t think the enlightened pleasure seeking mentality is suitable for my personality, I want something more from life. There’s a drive and fire inside me to change the world for the better, even if it’s just in a small and minor way. A life of consumption doesn’t really appeal to me.
Lifestyle wise I’m beginning to want to be away from the city towards a quieter lifestyle. I’m less and less interested in restaurants/events etc and more and more interested in the outdoors, my friends and family and making things. Land is becoming more and more appealing to me.
I can see at some point that remaining in a busy, HCOL urban environment will continue to grate on me and I’ll need to move. Whilst there is a lot to do here the amount of traffic/time to get to various places is becoming prohibitive. This is a minor irritation but minor irritations tend to build over time to become quite major.
On the personal life front one relationship ended while a new one began. I remain completely sober and comfortable and relaxed about it. I’m now able to socialise without alcohol easily and confidence has increased accordingly. If you’ve ever been on the fence about trying sobriety I can wholeheartedly state that it’s improved my life for the better.
On the health front, the year had many ups and downs associated with illness and injuries. I stopped cycling everywhere due to a neck injury and put on some weight from highly stressful work hours. Weight wise I was all over the place with no consistency in this situation. Not entirely happy with this outcome.
Trip wise I had an extended 6 week holiday involving a long road trip around Tasmania. This was fantastic, I was able to go overnight hiking in Freycinet National Park and check out a number of different locations. The side goal for the trip was to assess whether Tasmania would be a viable living option for me. The ultimate conclusion here is that it may be a bit too isolated from the Mainland in this situation. I could see it working but would require a lot of thought as to how to make the lifestyle work.
Interestingly, in 2022 this was the first year where I thought that the idea of having children might be something I could see myself doing. I’m still unsure here but my opinion is becoming a lot more nuanced on this one. I believe this change has been due to a shift in thinking to a longer term time horizon as well as becoming a bit more traditional/conservative in general? I’m unsure here and it’s going to be interesting to see if this is a stable belief
I picked up using a Personal Knowledge Base in 2022 to help with organising a lot of my writing and thinking. In the past I’ve had everything scattered across 100 different locations and so I’ve made the effort to consolidate it all into markdown using Obsidian to help organise everything. This piece itself has been written using it which has made associating information between things a lot easier for me.
One interesting artefact of using a PKB is that you write more but the format of that writing is not suitable for publication. As such, writing in the PKB has come at the expense of actually publishing things, though I can also state that this was due to not having the mental head space to be writing as well due to work and life commitments. Writing something for myself is a very different proposition to writing something that can be read by others in this case. This is something I want to change in 2023.
One thing I am trying to do more is to write both shorter and longer pieces in this case. A lot of my writing has been coming in at the 4000+ word mark (including this post) which is a bit self indulgent at times. These pieces also take days if not weeks to research and write which slows down the entire creative process substantially.
Ideally I’ll publish more, shorter, self contained pieces around the 1000-1500 word mark going forward. This length is sufficient to get an idea across or explain something clearly without it being too much of a drag on my time and energy. In parallel to this I also want to aim to publish 10,000-20,000 word short pieces of writing on a particular topic. In my mind I’m envisioning these to have very little filler as compared to a lot of the non-fiction works published today.
Ideally, I’d like to be able to publish these on a site like Gumroad for a small nominal fee in this situation. Here it requires a degree of self belief to believe that the writing would have value in this situation. It would also require doing the work to get it out there. Ideally, I’d publish the material on the blog in various formats but the actual published piece would be of a higher quality with more structure attached to it.
Published Long Pieces
Unpublished/In Progress Long Pieces
- The Self Coached Athlete - The first of the longer pieces of work that I’m writing. Ideally aiming to publish on Gumroad. Subject matter is providing a detailed introduction to the systems needed for an athlete to self coach in this case. Targeting the semi-serious but not professional athlete who wants to get systematically better but can’t afford/doesn’t want to spend on a professional coach.
Just five published in the last twelve months. I’m going to try and publish the back catalogue of writing as well as a lot of this was actually of reasonable quality.
Health and Fitness
Well, 2022 was a bit of an up and down year when it comes to personal health and fitness. Notably, cardio increased, strength decreased, flexibility neutral, technically skilled abilities decreased, injuries increased, weight increased. Overall, not exactly what I was going for on this one with only 1 out of 6 areas trending the way I wanted them too.
Strength, Cardio, Flexibility and Skills
Training across the year itself was incredibly sporadic and I was unable to find a groove and schedule that worked for me consistently. This lack of consistency led to spinning my wheels a bit in a number of areas which, compounded with injuries, ultimately left me finishing the year in a slightly worse position to how I started it. A disappointing result overall, though I am being harsh on myself here.
Highlights from the year was taking up long distance walking with weight (rucking) including multiple 20km+ walks with >10kg on my back. At one point I worked back up to a 220kg deadlift which was a nice experience and I also ran my first >10km run which was nice. It’s a different experience getting to that level which is good.
Skill wise, handstand went to shit, lost the handstand press, lost the front lever, flexibility substantially reduced. Nothing much to really add here. I didn’t train the skills and I lost my ability to do them.
Weight and Body Composition
Back in late 2021 I ran an experiment on myself to maintain a low carb diet to assess the impact on my body. The experiment itself was a success but the weight did rebound back up again once the discipline became a little bit sloppier in this situation. In my case this occurred around Christmas last year. I’m not sure what to take away from this experience, the diet clearly worked for weight loss but it required a herculean effort and I wasn’t able to embed it as a habit in my day to day life.
Over the past 12 months I haven’t really made any consistent effort to bring this back to the level that I would like. This has had flow on effects on my handbalancing and other gymnastic style skills which are much easier to do at a lower body weight due to increases in relative strength and improved leverage here.
Weight essentially finished 2022 at 2-3kg heavier than I started but with impaired body composition. Ideally I’d be about 5-6kg lighter than I am now.
Injuries and Health Issues
I’m including these here as a reminder to myself that 2022 has not been the best year ever from a health perspective. I’ve ended up at the ER multiple times and have a number of acute and recurring injuries and illnesses which has been frustrating.
I’ve had a general sense for awhile that I haven’t been taking care of my body as well as I could be. Seeing all of the issues spelled out just crystallises this for me
- Pinched nerve in Neck - The most debilitating injury of 2022 was a long term neck injury resulting from a compressed nerve while riding my Brompton on a long bike ride. I’m putting it down to the vibrations. Significant nerve pain which could be induced on demand from different neck positions. Had a substantial number of physio sessions including massage and dry needling with eventual conclusion being that it just required a substantial amount of rest
- Left Knee Injury - Noticed a significant amount of “crackling” when squatting at the gym. Research indicates it’s a flexibility/strength issue in the supporting area. It’s not super painful but definitely noticeable
- Slipped Rib Syndrome - This was a strange one, noticing a lot of pain/tightness/lack of flexibility in the mid back. Ability to rotate and twist decreased substantially here.
- Rolled Ankle - Badly rolled my ankle while doing box step ups/downs at the gym with a barbell on my back. Lesson here was the box was too high and I couldn’t control the stepdown appropriately. Having the barbell on the back also prevented me from protecting myself in this case as well. Initially assumed it was broken and went to ER to get an X-Ray
- Lower Back Spasm - While Overhead Pressing at the gym had quite a dangerous lower back spasm in this situation.
- Haemorrhoids - External haemorrhoid near Christmas Day. In progress. Mentioning in the interest of transparency. Basically, I did it to myself through bad diet but a significant detriment to quality of life to finish the year.
Almost all of the actual injuries came from overstretching myself when I was tired and hadn’t warmed up properly. The main takeaway here is that I need to adapt my exercise regime to reflect the ageing process in this case and treat my body with a bit more kindness. In particular, working on
Things I Tried and Rejected
- Myotherapy - Don’t really see the point of this to be honest. Better bang for buck getting a regular thai massage
- Dry Needling - Had this done a couple times on my neck, didn’t feel a huge amount of release in this situation. Maybe just doing it wrong but not something I’d want to pay to get done to me more.
The career has probably been the most interesting part of 2022 for me. A combination of too much stress, working 80 hour weeks, quitting a job, un-quitting a job, pivoting areas and then ending up going on sabbatical at the end of the year to refresh myself. It’s been a wild ride
When I look back at it over the last year I can clearly see that my incredibly high stress, long hours, highly paid, job has been both good and bad for me. On the good side I can safely say that my competence and self confidence has risen astronomically simply by having to deal with so many complex and stressful situations while walking away with a good result. This has been incredibly valuable and it’s created a hunger and self belief inside me.
On the other hand, this high stress and long hour job also led to significant burnout and irritability. My relationships suffered and so did my other interests. I became a one-dimensional person who was oriented around work at all costs. This is not what I want for my life, I want to be able to work on other things that interest me as well as being a good friend and good partner. I think this burnout also led to the increasing expenditures observed below in the Personal Finance section. When you’re tired and stressed, but have money, the natural inclination is simply to use money to solve your problems. This decreases creativity in this case I think.
So in terms of my working life this creates a challenge for me from which I see a few different potential pathways:
- Status Quo: Continue to work on highly stressful jobs and experience burnout. Ultimately this must be rejected as it is not sustainable.
- Change Job: Try to find a different job that doesn’t have the same characteristics as the job that led to burnout in the first place.
- Change Approach: Change how I approach my work, focus on finding more balance and not “pouring” everything into it. Prioritise life outside of work as opposed to life inside of work.
- Embed my life into work: The inverse of 3), making work into my life and trying to pour everything into it without stressing about other life requirements
At the moment, I’m leaning towards a combination of 2) and 3). From a personality perspective if I just changed my job I think I’d end up in the same situation as I’d throw myself into it completely anyway. So I need to change how I approach things as well. The current priority is taking the sabbatical to work out what 2) and 3) look like. I’m trying to keep an open mind here on this one.
Initial thoughts are that it will rely upon finding the right mixture of minimal workplace politics, technical depth, social interaction, challenging problems, values alignment in this situation.
Four Day Week
As part of the “un-quitting” process mentioned above I dropped down to a four day work week by taking Fridays off. I found that this actually had zero impact on the amount of work I was actually producing and if anything the quality of the work actually increased in this situation. I’m putting this down to less stress.
The other key benefit is you get a “life day” back in addition to the weekend itself. This helps with grocery shopping, cooking, cleaning, dealing with admin tasks on a weekday versus a weekend day which has been wonderful.
Going forward I think I would definitely try to stick with a 4D workweek, I wouldn’t necessarily want to take a full 20% pay cut to do this but I would take a 10% pay cut in this case. My rationale here is that in the work that I do the actual value of my work has very little to do with the number of hours that I put in. Instead, it relates to the quality of my thinking and the ideas that I’m able to generate and execute upon. My work is not a mechanical phenomenon where you put in time and get out money. Instead, it requires detailed and creative study along with years of expertise to do well. I think that people are paying me for those years of expertise and creative problem solving capabilities, not the number of hours I’m able to answer emails.
I’m attributing the main benefit here to having “less baseline cognitive load” which means I’m able to do higher cognitively demanding tasks.
Remote versus Office Work
The most controversial topic of 2022 and I can safely say that I’ve come down on the side of predominantly office work for most people is optimal. This has come out from my time as both a senior level individual contributor as well as as a manager of direct reports.
In terms of output I’ve found that remote works well for:
- Senior people who are well established in their careers
- People who have been with a business for a long period of time, have existing social networks and understanding
- When the problem domain is well defined and well specified
- Completing individual tasks in an autonomous fashion
I’ve found it doesn’t work well for people who are more junior, have just joined a business or whose work is more collaborative and creative. Having the balance to move between the two is crucial. In my experience, the people who I’ve found have been most dogmatic about remote work have also been the people who are only doing tasks in a well defined problem domain and don’t care about the creative and innovative elements of work.
I think the optimal mixture here is likely a combination of 1-2 days remote and 2-3 days office (sticking with the four day week here). It’s more important to be working on the right thing and ensuring that everyone is pulling together in the same direction than it is for any single individual to be maximally productive on an individual task.
In this light I think the days should be treated completely separately. On remote days, don’t have any meetings, on office days don’t have people sitting in cubicles working with headphones on. Get out of the boring middle ground and instead be explicit about what you’re trying to achieve with your time. Video calls are the devil.
For completeness, I have also observed some individuals who are clearly taking the mickey with remote work and phoning it in so to speak. I estimate this at around 10-30% of the people I’ve interacted with over the past 36 months since COVID started. Unfortunately, they’re often smart enough to do the minimum required to get away with it and the brunt typically goes on their co-workers in this situation.
Starting a Business
This is more just a thought at the moment but I can feel a hunger in myself to align my work and my outcomes more explicitly. Salaried work doesn’t have this at all really. Your financial compensation is often completely separate from your work in this case. What I’m looking for is something that lets me align my work with my financial compensation whilst scaling with it.
Basically, higher variance and more direct control of the financial outcomes rather than a low variance/low control outcome.
Have been continuing to apply the Financial Independence principles in my life and 2022 was the sixth year that I kept detailed records. Expenses crept up this year due to some larger one off purchases and home renovations but income increased as well. Savings rate remained relatively constant at 61.4%. 2022 Was my highest income and highest expenditure year since I started tracking in 2017. At the moment the FI point would likely be around 2028 at this point.
The benefit of FIRE is not in actually achieving FIRE itself. It’s in the different options that it gives you. Being able to quit your job and know you’ll be fine is huge. Being able to minimise expenditures and not have any stress about bills is huge. Being able to separate your cash flow from your paycheck is huge in this situation. The benefit of FIRE is the increased mental freedom it gives you from not having to worry about these things at all. It’s not about being cheap, or being frugal or whatever. Instead, it’s about being able to give yourself freedom from a bad situation with minimal impact to you life.
Interestingly, the expenditure increasing has actually shifted Financial Independence to be further out of reach in this situation with expenditures having crept up more than the net worth has with the stock market downturns in 2022. This has actually delayed the FIRE date by ~18 months in this situation which isn’t the worst thing in the world considering the increase in the income available to me. Graphically the FIRE journey looks like the below, you can see the inflection point in late 2020 when I became a homeowner in this situation. This was a deliberate decision but the expenditures need to be accounted for.
The stock market itself has had it’s worse year since 2008 but I’ve overall been fine with this. These things are natural, they happen and the absolute number is now high enough for me that I still feel secure. This is a market difference to how I felt following the COVID crash of 2020.
On the flip side, the overall quality of where I’m living has increased dramatically for a net reduction in direct housing costs. Most of the increased costs have been driven by making longer term purchasing decisions regarding furniture etc due to owning a property now versus renting previously.
The main changes in expenditure have been:
- Travel -> Up substantially -> This was the major increase in cost and reflects some pre-purchasing for things in 2023
- Groceries -> Up slightly, mostly comfortable with this level
- Fitness -> Down (cheaper gym membership)
- Clothing -> Down (didn’t buy any), should probably have been higher
- Hobbies -> Up substantially, higher to reflect gear associated with Overnight Hiking, Woodworking and Leatherworking
- Eating Out -> Constant year on year but elevated versus previous years. Should aim to decrease
- Home -> Down but still elevated due to repairing my Courtyard and upgrading couch
- Auto -> Up moderately (repairs)
Investment wise I’ve been sticking with ETFs for the most part. Introduced some Nasdaq exposure which in hindsight was a terrible idea. Still bullish on the technology sector but recognising that I was wrong here in my thesis. Ultimately the valuations appear to have had far more to do with the cheap money available leading to frothy valuations as opposed to any intrinsic value of the companies themselves. The moats of the tech companies have proven to be less valuable than originally anticipated as well.
Looking forward I’m expecting my finances (from an income and expenses perspective) to be predominantly neutral to slightly positive in 2023. The extended time off work will lead to reduced income and there are likely to be higher costs associated with travel. That being said it should be mostly positive by the end of the year due to higher earnings in the backend of the year as well as getting my annual leave paid out and a tax return due to timing effects.
I’m treating the next 6-7 months as a mini retirement in this case where I can explore things that I’ve been wanting to do for awhile. This might actually lead to higher expenses. I’m hoping I’ll be spending less money on eating out though due to increased time availability.
For 2023 I want to continue to invest in hobbies and activities that bring me joy whilst minimising all other expenditures. I also want to try to find additional income sources outside of salaried income.
A list of major personal projects I finished in 2022.
- Industrial Pipe Bookcase Build -> A massive industrial pipe workbench made from galvanised pipe and 3.3m long blackwood hardwood boards. Incredibly happy with how this one turned out and has become a large feature piece in my bedroom.
- Tasmanian Myrtle Side Table -> This was made from a course in Fine Woodworking that I undertook over 4 full days in March. Really happy with how this turned out and the skills that I learnt were invaluable.
- Mortise and Tenon Workbench -> Finished the Mortise and Tenon Workbench made out of construction pine. This was made over 2-3 months and took far longer than it should have due to procrastination and inertia. Throughout this process I realised that woodworking in your living room is an incredibly messy experience and that having a proper workbench for making things is crucial. Unfortunately, this also meant that I got out of the habit of making things out of Leather (which was the original purpose of the workbench). Also recognising that cutting mortises and tenons by hand with a chisel is incredibly time consuming.
- DIY Rebuilding my Courtyard -> Ripping out a rotting deck and replacing with an artificial turfed area with couch for
- Living Room Home Theatre -> Have this set up now so I can watch movies and TV shows on my big white wall. Also integrated with a high quality pull out couch so I can make this into a proper movie night. Learnt how to make great tasting homemade popcorn as well
- Nordic Curl Board -> A small DIY project to build a Nordic Curl board to help with hamstring training. Quite happy with it.
- Patisserie -> Learned how to make choux pastry for eclairs and pastry cream as well
- Leatherworking Punch Holder - A small Tasmanian Oak holder to hold leatherworking punches.
Nothing of note here. Haven’t had the energy/capacity to systematically do something here. Of note, I am still completely sober from drinking as well which has been a good change to continue working on. Have also heavily reduced coffee down to 1 cup per day from the 3-4 that I was having previously which could be considered an experiment, except I didn’t do any controls on this one.
In total I’ve read 39 books in 2022. This was one less than my original goal of 40 books but still 5 more books than I read in 2021. Overall the reading didn’t feel as focused as I would like. I found it difficult to get into a lot of books in this situation and I think this was due to high work stress. I’m finding it harder and harder to find books that introduce me to concepts I haven’t come across before and are at the right level of depth for me.
These are books that I read in 2022 that I plan on rereading again in the future.
- Training for the New Alpinism - This is hands down the best book about physical training that I’ve ever read. Whilst some of the examples aren’t applicable to what I do there is a lot to take away.
- The World Ending Fire: The Essential Wendell Berry - I found this book incredibly poignant and it opened my eyes to how fragile and precious our natural world is in many ways.
- Good Strategy Bad Strategy - A really good explainer regarding strategy and how to apply it to an organisation.
- Digital Minimalism (Again) and Deep Work - This made the 2021 list as well but I re-read it once more. Overall, there is a lot to take away from this book but the challenge is the implementation.
Budgets and Government Documents
I continue my tradition of reading all of the budget documents for my state and federal governments here in Australia. I think that this is a competitive advantage and following the money and then comparing this to how much they’re spending on things has given me a completely new appreciation for things.
In particular, it’s shown to me just how much of Government spending is automatic. We do, essentially, live in a socialist style system. We just don’t recognise it because the support goes to people we wouldn’t ordinarily expect it to. Most expenditure continues to be on the old and the young in these situations with a lot less than anticipated actually going on new developments in these situations. Our governments are mostly wealth transfer systems as opposed to society advancement systems in this situation. I make no judgements as to whether this is a good thing or not.
My prediction here is that citizens will continue to ask governments to do more and more which, coupled with increasing income inequality from market outcomes will lead to increasing social wealth transfers over time. Society will likely to continue to stratify between those who are supported and those who support. Government finances will continue to be strained and investment in critical infrastructure will continue to lag due to the high drain from social services.
One thing I have started trying to do is buy/read more authoritative sources on subjects I’m interested in. So far I’ve picked up Statistical Rethinking about Bayesian style statistics. Also A Pattern Language by Christopher Alexander et al about Architecture and Design and starting to pick up things about professional baking and the like. In the same light Training for the New Alpinism is halfway between a textbook and a regular book in this situation.
My main vein of thinking has been that the current non-fiction book format is horrific. It genuinely is. There’s maybe 1-2 main ideas fleshed out with a ton of filler. They should be smaller 50-100 page books rather than the 200-300 page books that they actually are. Unfortunately, these are hard to actually find in this situation. Not sure why. Probably because they take just as long to write (since the rest is just filler).
I have also been experimenting with asking ChatGPT to design me a learning curriculum. This seems to work when there are other authoritative lists published out on the internet (e.g. for computer science) but doesn’t work well for more niche subjects. In particular, ChatGPT seems to invent books that don’t actually exist. I think using these types of models to design detailed curriculum could be a fantastic use case in the future. Similar to what Learn Anything is trying to accomplish, it’s not quite there yet.
Skills and Hobbies in 2022
In 2022 I continued the goal of becoming a more “creative producer” who spends time outdoors in nature. This including trialling woodworking, improving my culinary skills, continuing leatherworking and getting outdoors more.
This was something that I tried in 2022 through taking a (quite expensive) course at a Fine Woodworking School. Overall, I found the experience to be incredibly valuable, learning new skills and getting a feel for working with a different material in this one. There is something about being able to make something yourself rather than buying it that is incredibly satisfying.
I ended up making two major projects in 2022, the side table that I made in the course itself and a huge workbench made out of 2x4 construction pine. The second one is probably the most solid table I’ve ever owned and it’s made with no fasteners at all, just wood glue and joinery which is incredibly satisfying.
Throughout the whole experience the main challenge behind woodworking is having an appropriate space to woodwork. It’s messy, requires a lot of cleaning and dust tends to get everywhere. This is still the case even when using hand tool techniques that I was using throughout the build process. Additionally, woodworking requires a substantial amount of supporting tools (e.g. clamping a piece down or using a vice) that aren’t necessarily practical to have in a small and multi functional space. I’m
I think what I should have done is found a school that I could have gone to in the nearby area with access to all of the machinery and equipment rather than trying to do it outside of my own home. That being said, doing some more research I have found some sources online such as The Apartment Woodworker who may be more beneficial in this case.
Ultimately, the feeling of being able to make things with my hands is probably worth the mess of cleaning up a little bit in this situation.
Conclusion: Join a nearby school (more expensive) but potentially more productive use of my time
I kind of screwed myself over a bit on this one. I decided to build a hand crafted and custom workbench for myself using the Woodworking skills that I acquired earlier. This took up most of my time for several months while I was getting it finished which coupled with the burnout from work left me not wanting to make anything at all in this situation.
I’m also at the point in my Leatherworking journey where I think I would need to begin to sell some of the pieces in order to recover the cost of the material itself that I’m using. It becomes harder and harder to justify the cost of using quality materials on hobby projects that won’t necessarily see the light of day in this situation. It doesn’t need to be much but ideally being able to break even would be ideal in this case.
That being said, the process itself is also inherently enjoyable in this situation and refining my skills (and learning new ones) has its own reward here so potentially I don’t need to recover as much as I think in this situation.
Conclusion: Continue this for 2023, work out how to get paid for some of the pieces
Overnight Hiking and Camping
I really enjoy getting outdoors into nature and camping. There’s something about roughing it a little bit and getting completely separated from day to day life which just creates a great little palate cleanser in this situation. I’m almost completely set up from a gear perspective on this one now (famous last words, there’s always more gear) so now the challenge will be organising and identifying different locations to go to and then just getting it done. Ideally I would go on 6-12 overnight hikes/camps in 2023 here.
Have also managed to set up a decent car camping experience that can get ready to go in less than an hour. Thinking here is that weekends away become easy and accessible when you can bring your own comfortable accommodation and cooking setup with you. Not as reliant upon AirBnB/Restaurants/Hotels etc in this situation. The cost of course being a little more discomfort.
Conclusion: Aim to do monthly
Started this at a basic level learning how to make proper Pate a Choux and creme patisserie in this situation for eclairs and profiteroles. Learned how to use baker’s percentages and experimenting with different recipes.
Conclusion: Integrate with photography of the baked goods. Work out how to integrate this into the diet as a whole.
Hobbies and Skills I Want to Try (no particular order)
- 3D Printing
- Computer Assisted Design
- Sewing and Tailoring
- Leather Bag Making
- Leather Shoe Making
- Jiu Jitsu
- Welding and Metalworking
Habits I’ve Picked Up I Don’t Like
- Still watching far too much YouTube and in particular gaming videos on Rimworld, Oxygen Not Included and League of Legends. I find that they help me to sleep at night. Something that I want to avoid
- Sitting too much -> This is coupled to the above but I feel as though I’ve become too stagnant in this situation. Some of this comes down to exhaustion more than anything else.
- Poor diet -> Have been really sloppy with this one predominantly from a laziness perspective more than anything else in this situation.
Things in 2022
This is a short(ish) list of things from 2022 that I used/stopped using.
That I started using and like
- Obsidian - I’ve started heavily investing in a PKB in this situation which I’ve liked. Having all of the information at my finger tips has been great.
- ChatGPT - I use this as a search engine for common things and often as a prompt for searching for more information. Getting close to a google killer for me for some tasks but incredibly frustrating for other tasks.
- Xgimi Horizon - This is a fantastic projector and it’s been a major upgrade to my quality of life to be able to have good movie nights inside
- Bitwarden - Fuck Lastpass
- Apple Watch Series 6 - Managed to get one cheaply from a friend. Having it there for the sleep, notifications, workout tracking, heart rate tracking. It’s a fantastic device
- Multiple Pairs of New Glasses - Managed to pick these up cheaply from Bailey Nelson. Really happy having more options in this situation
- Air Purifier - Picked up a Conway and have noticed a definite decrease in the amount of sneezing that I’m doing. Overall a positive here.
- Local (3 minute walk) Gym - This has heavily reduced the number of excuses that I have available to me. That being said, it isn’t quite as good as I would have liked.
That I continue using and like
- Python - Still the basis of a lot of my career
- Pandas - This is a hard one here, Pandas is incredibly frustrating due to the API always changing and breaking.
- GNUCash - Now at >5 years of financial data in this system. Every expense and investment with custom dashboards powering it using Piecash in the background. It’s quiet and just works.
- Plotly Dash - One of the more productive tools that I’ve used. There are some really frustrating elements within it but it’s been second to none in terms of getting something up and running quickly.
- 1zpresso JX Pro Coffee Grinder - Quiet, efficient, great results
- Hario Cold Press - Affordable, low cost and efficient
- Hario Filter Coffee - My preferred “hot” coffee beverage at the moment
- Lodge Blacklock Cast Iron Frying Pan - Easy to keep clean, produces great results
- Anova Sous Vide Anova Pro Vacuum Sealer - Easy to use, great results, wonderful tasting food
- Desky Sit Stand Desk - Being able to move between sitting and standing reduces my back pain
That I stopped using
- Brompton M6R - This is due to the neck injury discussed earlier. Was unable to ride without feelings of pain in this situation. Considering selling and replacing with an e-bike.
- Sodastream - Replacing the bottles is annoying and not as cheap as originally anticipated
- Electric Scooter - Not the biggest fan here, thinking about using an ebike instead. Was experiencing a lot of vibrations due to the neck injury
- Earbuds for exercise - Have been trying to focus on what I’m doing rather than just distracting myself continuously