a.k.a. August in review
This post is based on a NaBloPoMo prompt: What do you now know about yourself at the end of this month-long challenge?
7 things I learnt from NaBloPoMo
- I needed a writing space.
I started this blog to share my self-tracking efforts without realising how much I needed to go back to writing. Now I know – and I intend to keep at it.
- Writing is a wonderful way to clear one’s head.
I usually tend to “think too much” – not only do I overthink things, I just can’t get a quiet moment in my head, especially at night. Yet, after a month of daily writing, my mind feels quieter somehow – and I am grateful for that.
- I am not a good marketer.
I wasn’t naive enough to think that people would find my blog without any effort on my part, but I didn’t think blogging would be so lonely. The NaBloPoMo roundups brought some visitors but only one followed my blog and two commented on other posts. Next month I will spend more time looking for blogs to read and comment on.
- I’m a tagger!
In 31 posts, I used 65 different tags, with the top three being challenge (22), knowledge (17), and prompt (16). The remaining tags were only used between one and six times (learning). I guess that just goes to show how varied my posts were!
- There are things that I am not ready to deal with.
On a few occasions, I had to skip prompts or refrain from sharing details about a situation because I didn’t want to think of certain painful memories. It didn’t happen often and I didn’t want this blog to get “too” personal anyway, but it caught me off guard.
- I don’t miss college.
I sometimes think I do, because of the friends I no longer see or the marks that made me proud, but really, I am better-off without it. It was a source of incredible stress for me, and I now get to study what I want to learn at my own pace and in what I hope is a more effective and efficient manner.
- I am not obsessed with languages.
At first I was afraid that I wouldn’t have much to blog about besides my job and my main passion, but only 25% or so of my posts had to do directly with languages or language learning. I wonder what else I will write about next month.
5 things I learnt from self-monitoring
- I love writing reports.
I don’t know what is it about those reports that I like so much; is it the template I get to use? the numbers I get to interpret? the contrast between these cold numbers and my enthusiastic commentaries? or the changes that I notice from one week to the next? I think I just love all of it!
- Observing isn’t enough.
Not all things can change by themselves; taking action is often necessary. For instance, my sleep won’t improve unless I go to bed earlier and/or tire myself physically. I won’t lose weight unless I stop snacking and start exercising regularly. I won’t have a satisfying social life unless I make conscious efforts to meet new people. I won’t get paid unless I get in touch with potential clients.
- I am happier than I thought.
I tend to remember the bad easier than the good, so I tend to think of myself as an unhappy person, a difficult person to live with, a susceptible person, but I am not as bad as I think. This month, 75% of my “mental state” entries indicated that I felt happy and the other 25% said “OK”, not “bad”. I wasn’t “angry” or “depressed” or even “stressed out” – just “OK” because I was a bit tired or lonely.
- I am not addicted to TV series.
I had no idea how much time I actually spent watching TV. The first-week average was about 2 hours a day, which is a long way from binge watching. The second week, I went overboard with about 4.5 hours a day, but got this under control – reducing my TV consumption to 3 hours a day and then 1.6 hours a day. I am definitely not an addict.
- Language learning is on the rise.
I went from dedicating about 6.5 hours a week to German and Spanish combined to spending about 7.5 hours a week with each of them – that’s 15 hours a week! I now spend more time practising languages than watching TV – and I didn’t even try to do so, it just happened gradually, naturally. I can’t wait to top that!
Quite a positive review indeed. I think all in all I learnt a lot about my world view and expectations, which is going to make it easier to let go of them. I also feel closer to my goals and would like to set myself a few goals for September. More on that later!