Hi, I'm Bassam Ismail

2018 - A recap

3 mins read life

This year has had its fair share of ups and downs. There are certain areas where I think I could have done better which I resolve to improve on in the coming year. However, there were events that make this year a perfect one which makes me wonder if I’m being too hard on myself.

Personal

To start on the bright side, I have gained a lot of interpersonal skills while working as an Engineer manager at Axelerant. This has helped form a bond with my colleagues and has led me to become a lot more empathetic. As an introvert, I feel there is still a long way for me to go to become a better engineering manager.

The best day of the year was when my daughter, Baheej was born. She is the apple of my eye. This event has led me to become a lot more conscious about the decisions I take, especially around finances. Although I never was a spendthrift, I’m, however, a little more serious about how I spend and invest my time and money now.

Health is something I feel I’ve been taking for granted for God knows how long and it has taken a toll on me. In 2018 I’ve had a tendinitis surgery in my left hand due to the poor ergonomics of my laptop keyboard and how I was using it. I corrected it by moving the laptop from my lap to a table with an external monitor, keyboard and a mouse. This has helped me a lot and my hands and back are thankful for it.

Apart from that, I’ve been dealing with a lot of anxiety this whole year and I have become a lot more pessimistic because of it. This has been weighing on my health and my relationship. I’m planning to address it with habits that I’m going to form over 2018.

Work

This year hasn’t been great when it comes to technical achievements or learnings. Being mostly tied up at work and at home I couldn’t spend significant time on side projects or learning new things. I attribute this too poor time management which is again something I want to improve in the coming year.

The only to meaningful side projects I worked on this year were refactoring Kashmir News and Netlify Drupal 8 module which I have been using a lot myself.

I have scrapped the previous iteration of this blog with a new one. I plan to do this less often and write more not just about technical topics but whatever is interesting to me and makes sense on this blog.

Habits

I’m using the word habits here because I want to all to continue over the coming years and become a part of who I am.

  • Take care of my health. cycling more often at least 4 days a week.
  • Write in my personal journal every day to become more conscientious about what I’m doing and how my time is being spent.
  • To be financially more stable so that I can take risks on passion projects.
  • Invest time in technology, books, and courses that I plan to finish and not leave half-way through.
  • Build a new Drupal Kashmir website and collaborate with more people to start a local meet-up.
  • Consistently share content on this blog. I’m thinking weekly useful links, TILs, and blogs like this.

That’s a wrap on the overview of how this year was for me and how I plan to challenge myself next year.

Happy holidays and hope you have great 2019.


Bassam
  • Developer
  • Father
  • Human