This is the first time I am sharing my annual review here on the blog.
Even though the journey is about moving forward, occasionally we do have to look back in order to see what all we have done, how far we have come, what can be improved, and to see what things we have learned so that we can actually move forward in our journey with greater understanding towards our personal mission.
And December is the most wonderful time to do this. A full 12 months is about to come to pass and it is a good time to review all the things that happened this year.
An annual review is basically a sum of your year (not anybody else’s and with no comparison) and helps you to see the most important question, ‘How did I live my life this year?’
So for my annual review I am going to share 3 things
- What good things did I do this year?
2. What things didn’t go well this year?
3. What did I learn this year?
So let me start
1. What good things did I do this year?
Table of Contents
Although this year was hard and a difficult one for many of us due to the Pandemic, there were still many good things that happened this year.
Starting a blog:
This is probably the best thing I did for myself this year. I am so glad that I started despite all the self-doubt and fear that I am not ‘that perfect’, that I might not be ready, that I don’t know anything about blogging and all such thoughts.
I decided to start my blog ourhumanrevolution.com and published my 1st post on 13th January 2020 on the day of my birthday. But after some thought, I decided to close it down and start another with my own name vishakablone.com. So this blog is the second one that I started in September 2020.
Blogging was something entirely new to me and it has helped and is helping me push myself outside my comfort zone as I learn new things about the digital world as well as about my own self.
All these years I had been writing only for myself in my journal but starting a blog has allowed me to start writing for a reader. For the first half of the year, I was inconsistent with my writing taking this blog only as a hobby but with my second blog which I started in September, I have been posting 1 article every Sunday and I have not missed even 1 week since then.
Even though not much, I can’t believe that so far I have written 33 articles and more than 20 articles which are more than 2000 words long. It makes me believe that I will be able to write a book too!! And it won’t remain just a dream.
More time with loved ones:
Because everything got shut I and my mother had to come back home. This allowed me to stay at home and be close to my loved ones and my dog Bella whom I missed so much. I am still at home and enjoying my stay here.
I used to be underconfident and I used to fear public speaking a lot but this year I grew to be more fearless when it comes to public speaking. Attending and participating in SGI meetings have been really helpful for me in this. I gave my first presentation this year at an international seminar as an Assistant Professor.
I read 11 books this year. They were (along with their amazon links)
A youthful diary by Daisaku Ikeda
Long Walk to freedom by Nelson mandela
Like a flowing river by Paulo Coelho
Old path white clouds by Thich Nhat Hanh
When breath becomes air by Paul Kalanithi
Manual of the warrior of light by Paulo Coelho
Ikigai by Albert Liebermann and Hector Garcia
The Power of your Subconscious mind by Joseph Murphy
Kaneko’s story by Kaneko Ikeda,
Getting things done by David Allen and
Wise and otherwise by Sudha Murthy (currently reading)
Though this year there was almost no travel at all due to the Pandemic, at the start of the new year I and my family visited Mandarmani, the sea beach close to Kolkata.
All these years it was my mother who was taking me to different places and it was my wish that I get to be able to do the same for her as soon as possible. And starting this year, this trip was the first one where my wish got fulfilled.
Another great place I visited really close to my hometown was Ahal dara.
Made my first investment:
Until this year I had only invested time for my growth and learning, but this year I decided to invest money too. I invested in a weekend content workshop by SanjayShenoy in order to up-skill my writing a bit and I am really glad that I did. I also invested in buying an e-course bundle by Deepak Kanakaraju from Digitaldeepak.com. I have just started with one course so I am hoping to learn much more. So far so good.
This is not to boast but I am just so thankful for these purchases I made this year and I am so thankful that I was able to buy them. I hope this abundance is always flowing.
- Amazon Kindle for my mother’s birthday gift
- Ipad Air 3 which I am really loving!
- Logitech Bluetooth Keyboard which is so cute and portable for working on my iPad and laptop which has made my typing experience so smooth and good!
- Logitech pebble M350 mouse which is also so cute
- Apple pencil is another thing that has simplified my writing. I don’t have to buy pens anymore
- Goodnotes5 (after much comparison between notability or Goodnotes) which has been great for taking and keeping notes on my new iPad. Because of this, I have gone almost paperless and all my notes are in one place. And lastly,
- Iphone 11 (finally!)
I journaled consistently all through the year. Going through my journal is something I really enjoy. It acts as my own encouragement and it shows me how temporary things are, feelings are and what all I overcame, and what all I learned.
I came across some words which I’d like to share…
This life is about opening up more and more to our potentials. Nothing significant can be achieved in one day. It is an accumulation of effort, practice, and patience.
23rd Jan 2020
The only thing enduring in this swiftly changing world is the qualities one has attained in the pursuit of human revolution. All such things as money, fame, material things will have no lasting effect. They are just like children playing with their toys.
-8th February 2020
Enjoy the process thoroughly. Enjoy ‘Being’ as you ‘Become’
31st March 2020
War is not good for anyone. Human beings are so complex. War is a stupid thing to do and it’s terrible how an entire nation joins in the fight. There is no enemy and there is no good country in a war. Everyone who involves themselves in war is enemies- enemies of nature, enemies of humanity, and enemies of compassion. We must never resort to it.
– 2nd April 2020
Creation is always beautiful. Though it might take time and effort, after completion, it always feels so wonderful and nice.4th April 2020
One must read biographies and autobiographies of great men and women, for through it we not only know their character and life but it forges our own character, solidifies our own determination and we gain invaluable lessons of life which we won’t be able to gain in our ordinary lives with the people around us. Through these books, we are able to travel far and wide and even read the minds of great men and women. Books are so wonderful, truly priceless.
-18th April 2020
By being mindful when doing everyday things, we can worship throughout the day1st June 2020
While I am able to wake up early, I will wake up early
While I am able to read, I will read
While I am able to write, I will write
While I am able to study, I will study
While I am able to love, I will love
While I am able to live, I will love
I will do all that I am able to do now, now
I will live my life to the fullest
-31st July 2020
Your dreams will all make sense 5 or 10 years from now. Keep believing21st August 2020
Not everyone’s mission is the same. As many minds are there in this world, there can be as many missions. Don’t compare your mission with someone else’s. Don’t think someone else’s mission is greater than your own. Similarly, don’t think your mission is much greater than someone else’s. We are all here to fulfill our individual unique mission. Every mission is to be respected and fought with confidence. We always have something unique to offer to the world. There is always hope and it’s never too late to start fulfilling our mission. But it’s best that we realize it while we are still in our youth.
-25th August 2020
If one is not happy in a relationship, everything feels meaningless. Money and all worldly pleasures also seem meaningful only when we have someone to share our joys with. The key is to balance.7th September 2020
I need to slow down and enjoy the process. There are many things I don’t know and I must not be too hard on myself, trying to learn everything in one day. It’s not possible. The greatest learning comes from experience collected through time. I have to keep my mind clear at all times first of all.
–9th October 2020
Inner work is required for outer relationships to flourish. And it should happen on both sides.
–27th November 2020
Relationships are not just about happiness alone. It’s about trying to manage difficult emotions together. It’s about trying to clean the mess and both be willing to clean and revive each other again. It’s about the willingness to show effort through and through.
– 4th December 2020
In love, we are most strong as well as most vulnerable. We must find a partner who can be there for us at both times. The greatest responsibility of love lies in taking care of each other’s vulnerability. Love is after all not taking advantage of this vulnerability when one is in love.
14th December 2020
2. What things didn’t go well this year?
My daily rituals
I make it a point to read, write my journal, study, exercise, and pray every day. My daily rituals were all going well until I started to be consistent in blogging. So this hampered my daily rituals a bit as I had to carve out time for writing and learning about blogging in the time I used to give for my daily rituals.
I am still struggling with managing my time, with trying to have time for everything I wish to do in one day. I am still experimenting with this and perhaps when I find out a strategy that works wonders for me, I will share it here on my blog.
I had planned to study more about the subject that I teach but not much of this happened. This was partly because of the lockdown and partly because I didn’t find any pressure to do it.
Managing my reactions:
As I review myself I see in myself that there is a lot better I could do in managing my reactions in certain situations which could save a lot of hurt, disappointment, and anger.
Like everyone else I too struggle with procrastination. I noticed that I tend to procrastinate the little things more than the big things thinking they are insignificant. So things that actually take me 5-10 minutes actually end up taking more time as I tend to forget about them time and again.
I am trying to change this and in this, the app called ‘Any.do’ is being really helpful for me as of now as I immediately note down the tasks that I need to do today, tomorrow, or in the future and set reminders for it.
Promoting my blog:
Even though I started with my blog and writing 1 post per week consistently I didn’t give much focus on promoting my blog. At first, I was even reluctant to share with people that I had started with my blog but gradually as I started to receive positive feedback and messages from people that they found my articles helpful, I decided to share though not much. Even greater than writing I am struggling with this part of blogging.
But next year I am going to start with my own Facebook and Instagram page and give more focus to sharing on Social media especially Pinterest and Twitter.
3. What did I learn this year?
The biggest learning I learned from this year are
- You cannot rush learning. It happens at its own pace. You need to give it time and allow yourself to be a beginner. That’s how you enjoy the journey.
- Destroy Perfectionism. One of the things we need to destroy in order to get started with anything is perfectionism. This feeling and thought that we need not know everything, that we need to be perfect from the start before we do anything is what stalls our progress. ‘Done is better than perfect’ is one philosophy that I have adopted this year and trying to practice in many aspects of my life. [Tip: Embrace the Joy of Not Knowing]
- Going slow is the best way for you to go farther. To not be too focused on the time limit. There is no time limit. To go in the attitude of ‘No rush’. Just simply go slow and do the things you love one at a time and do it as if you have all the time in the world.
- Not everyone needs to know who you really are. Many people will misunderstand you and misinterpret you. What only matters is if you really know who you are. If you know who you are then whatever others have to have will not bother you at all.
- Always trust your intuition and your heart. They are the greatest messengers because they are the language of the Universe. So always believe in them and don’t feel guilty for trusting them.
- No love is flawless but just love isn’t enough. Love requires three ingredients- understanding, effort, and communication. If these three ingredients are there then even if love may be full of flaws, love will be enough.
So with this, I end my Annual review. I hope 2021 has lots of good things in store for every one of us.
Thank you and cheers! But before I end here are my 10 Best Posts of 2020
10 Best Posts of 2020
- How to slow things down: 8 things to remind yourself
- Don’t seek happiness if you want to be happy
- How to simplify the House of your life
- The essence of Daily Prayer- Why I pray every day
- 10 things you must never do in the morning
- How to let go of anxiety and heal yourself
- 5 Powerful reasons to start writing in a journal
- Discovering the art of doing nothing
- The self-love guide to finding balance when feeling hurt
- Making life count: How many 5 years do I have left?