Reflections for the year 2016

It’s nearly the end of 2016 and we are a couple of days away from ushering the new year of 2017. As the year 2016 draws to a close, it usually the time to take stock of how things were and to set new year resolutions for the new year. Naturally, being the inward soul-searching guy that I am, I too reflect on my life for the past year and plan/set resolutions for 2017.

Life can sometimes be complicated and at times simple. As such, I have decided to break life down into several components (with possibly some sub-sections) in order to simply and reflect on things. Without further ado, here are my reflections on the 8 life components which I have broken down to for the year 2016, in no order of importance to me.

Work

As mentioned in my rant post previously, not much as changed for work and I feel trapped in it. Stuck in my job situation and my thinking. Well, no point wallowing in self-pity. Really need to put in more effort to find the job that suits me and place lesser emphasis on what people from church say. Need to sustain the drive as well, and not to give in and give up.

Interests

Unfortunately, I don’t seem to have made much progress in this area. I seem to have lost interest in my previous recreational interests which I am not sure if it is due to my condition, or something else. I feel that my thinking of work is affecting this or my mental condition is the cause of this but I definitely have not been spending much time on recreational interests. What are they? They include playing computer games, maybe some martial art? Or playing the keyboard? And playing board games. Apart from board games which I managed to find time to do so, I have not been allocating time to do the abovementioned activities. Guess I really do need to organise and use my time more efficiently. I suppose I say that every year but this is really easier said than done. Need to come up with a concrete plan to use time more efficiently in 2017.

Love/Relationships 

For my love life, this has been yet another year of ups and downs, but at the end of the year, I’m still glad to say that both my girlfriend and I are still happily in a relationship and working to make things work. Despite the many misunderstandings and arguments, we pushed through them, and at the end of the year, I must say that it is still good to have her by my side. Through them, we manage to somewhat better understand each other and hopefully will keep doing so over the years to come. I still feel that she has a very high expectation of a boyfriend and in my personal opinion, I feel that I failed to live up to her expectations. She disagrees with quite a fair number of things I think or do and I still remember the sting of her words when we argue but these are things which I need to drop and not be too affected by that. Hopefully things will get better as time passes. At the end of the day, it is really still good to have her by my side and she is a nice girlfriend to me.

For my family, I am still thankful for them and I wish that I can treasure the time we have more often. Watching my girlfriend interact with her family and hearing stories of friends about family made me realized that perhaps I do not treasure my family as much as I should and I do need to make full use of the time that I have with them. My parents are not getting younger and my brother is moving on soon into a new phase of life – beginning work and progressing towards marriage. It is getting increasingly difficult to find time to gather together for a meal. I need to be more appreciative and treasure the time that we have remaining.

For my friends, I know I have been spending less and less time with them. As life progresses, people will have many other commitments in life and will drift apart. This is a part of life and I am no exception to that. With time as a limited resource, I have to make a decision to spend my time between conflicting choices of time and deciding to put my girlfriend first has made it harder to spend time with friends. But I suppose this is life. I can only hope to do better in this area in future despite an increasing amount of time to other commitments due to different phases of life.

Health/Physical fitness

I’ve been putting on weight around my waistline and thighs but apart from that, thank God that things are generally still fine. I’ve not had gout as previously suspected and I managed to pass my IPPT on my first try. I have not been exercising as much as I would have liked and my left knee is starting to give me problems again after some light runs. I should probably do more to take care of my knee.

Finances

This is an area which I have not been managing well in 2016 due to my various misadventures. I have not had an increment in earnings, and I have not been able to increase my savings. I may not be able to control my cash inflow from salary but I should do more in keeping track of my cash outflow. I have started to keep track via the app Wally and hopefully will lead to better monitoring in 2017. Perhaps I should do a quarterly post as well to hold myself accountable to my spendings. In addition, I have spent money on a financial modeling course which yielded nothing beneficial, lost money on FX trading and planning to go for a Japan trip in January next year. Despite a slight offset from investment dividends and capital gains, the overall is still a cash outflow and I’ve had to dip into savings from previous years to make up for the shortfall. I will have to focus more on my expenditure and minimise my trading loss as I am still learning.

Spirituality 

This is an area which is very difficult to measure, but it is definitely one area which I struggle a lot in and it is on every years new year resolution but somehow at the end of the year, I don’t seem to have accomplished much. That is to strive to be a better Christian and to walk closer to God. Well at the very least, I am thankful and grateful that I am still a Christian at the end of this year. I feel that I have a it of anger and resentment at my life and possibly God, and am keenly aware that I am not really living a life that a Christian is called too. It is really difficult to do so but the consolation is that I am still struggling in this and wanting to be a Christian. In Q4 of 2016, I have started reading a book with someone from church and this has helped to keep me somewhat grounded, and leading me to spend a couple of minutes a day to read the bible which I have not done so previously during the year. My girlfriend also initiated to start praying for me at the beginning of each workday. I will be hopeful for what 2017 brings with regards to this aspect.

Knowledge/Worldview/Readings

I have not managed to keep pace with the number of books I have bought so far and have not read up on all the things which I wanted to find out more about. Somehow, I’ve not had the mood nor the motivation to sustain me throughout the year and it has been dependent on my mood to do so. Hope that I can change this next year. Also, am excited to explore Japan next year and learn more. Through such trips and more recently via YouTube clips of Conan O Brien’s travels to Berlin, Korea and Cuba, I am reminded of how small I am and how big the world is. There is really quite a lot to explore and I would like to embark on an adventure to do some exploring. Of course I am not as adventurous as my friend who has made it her goal to visit 2 new places each year, but it would definitely be good to explore and to broaden my horizon and open my eyes more to the world instead of being narrowly fixated in the bubble that is Singapore. Perhaps by doing so, I will be more appreciative of my surroundings and what I have in Singapore.

Others 

I seem to have lost sight of my purpose of wanting to earn a lot of money. It seems that it is really easy to lose sight of things when many things swirl around you and you are distracted by many things that demand your immediate attention. I will need to reiterate my goal so that I do not lose sight of things. I hope to be a useful member to the human race. As such, I would like to earn more money so that I am able to donate or contribute to those who are less fortunate or need it more. So far, I know I have not exactly done anything to contribute to this goal but I need to keep focus on this and not lose sight of it. I still aim to be a better person and hopefully I can work towards it as the years go by.

Well, that’s all for my reflection on the year 2016. I have not accomplished much this year but I can only look forward to the new year as there is nothing I can do about the lost time and I will put in effort to make 2017 a more fruitful year. I will probably do another post on my new year resolution for 2017. Stay tune!

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