2020 was a year of challenges and changes. It was a test of one’s character and perseverance. For me, it taught me to step back and reflect; to encourage patience when faced with the unknown (at work and at home), and to build new habits to reduce anxiety and stress. From all of this, I learned to change my worldview and to accept that there are things that one cannot control. Thus, one has to make the best of their situation. I developed new habits, such as gardening with my mother and listening to the news every night.
In 2020, I have read 37 books (e-books and paperbacks), studied Chinese on Duolingo regularly, and participated in 2 art challenges (Mosstober October 15th to 31st and Art in the Time of Corona). While I did not do much writing, I helped my father complete our family tree and discovered a few famous ancestors. As for career development, I attended virtually ASCP Annual in November and completed other continuing education courses on a regular basis.
This year I plan to continue building on the same habits and perhaps work on a writing project. It helped that I use Habitica, a productivity app that helps one keep motivated to complete goals by “gamify[ing] [one’s] life.”
Guano Point, Grand Canyon (West Rim), Arizona (2013)
2019 was a very trying year from learning how to manage difficult people and situations at work to balancing obligations with a professional association to minor health problems. I have made 3 trips: New York, Toronto, and Guangdong province in China and Hong Kong. I, unfortunately, only completed 10 books. The rest of time was spent reading material for continuing education credits. I tried to implement more self-care, such as monthly massages and facials. The results were half-successful. Creativity-wise, I published an essay in the Legacies anthology, completed the Japan travel journals, and transferred my photos to Google Photos.
Towards the end of 2019, things seemed to be looking up at work with new changes taking place despite the injury I got from work. In addition, I minimized my digital accounts and apps in effort to decrease social media usage and smartphone dependence. Thus far, it has helped reduced unnecessary stress and constant connectivity. Hopefully, things will continue positively as 2020 starts off.
My resolutions for 2020:
Exercise 3-4 times weekly (running, walking, hiking).
Sunset at the Monterey Tides Hotel, Monterey, CA (11-3-18)
Between lapses between working and daily life, I reflected on what I learned from 2017 and 2018, and what I can do to make 2019 more fulfilling and better. Since 2017 and early 2018, I dealt with health issues related to work stress and work environment. I also participated in my local pharmacy association activities and eventually was elected as a board member in 2018. In the summer of 2018, I took on a new role at work and was challenged due to having to balance administrative duties, managerial duties, and workflow. Throughout all of this, I co-wrote a web serial with Taki called Gathering of Heroes series: Anhu and tried to find time for hobbies and relaxation. I supported quite a few artists (thanks to sleepyriceball‘s influence) and indie game developers, such as Zeiva Inc and roseVerte. I visited Shandong province, Henan province, Nanjing, and Beijing in September 2018.
Ultimately, I realized that my health is important and reducing stress is the key to improving my health. In 2019, I hope to continue to improve my health and continue growing as an individual.
Exercise 3-4 times weekly (running, walking, hiking).
2016 was a challenging year, in terms of life and work. I changed jobs but had to adjust to the new work culture and how to handle different colleagues. I determined what steps I wanted to take for my future. I bonded closer with my family and extended family. I used the time I have off to do what I need to achieve my goals and to maintain my well-being. I bonded closer with friends and got started on a story collaboration that will be coming in the future. There are still multiple things to accomplish so hopefully things keep on coming in 2017.
Exercise regularly (at least 3-4 times per week).
Continue to face difficult situations and once done, it’s done.
Learn Mandarin Chinese.
Draw or write at least once a week. [Including blog posts]
Reduce the amount of possessions and unused items (physically and digitally).
[I have already eliminated my Crunchyroll subscription so I resolve not to watch too much Japanese Anime this year]
From January to August, I completed my second and third semesters of my 1st year of pharmacy. I survived the difficult pharmacokinetic courses, worked in a hospital pharmacy in Sacramento and busy 24-hour CVS pharmacy for my Introductory Pharmacy Practice Experience (IPPE) hours; and managed to balance study with outings with friends. I also began thinking about my ideal independent community pharmacy as a result of the entrepreneurial pharmacy course
August 4-24 was my well-earned break from a tough third semester. My family and I traveled to major destinations along the Southern Silk Road in Sichuan and Yunnan provinces in China. We had many enlightening experiences learning about the minority cultures (the Bai people) and the ancient Shu people of Sichuan; and Buddhist beliefs. Like the people in the past, we made a 5-hour pilgrimage up the Meili Snow Mountain (one of the holy Buddhist mountains) and explored the beautiful scenery of Yunnan province. After the adventures in Sichuan and Yunnan provinces, we stayed in Beijing for a week and marveled at the modern changes the city undertook as a result of the 2008 summer Olympics. It was quite a change from my first visit in 1998.
Immediately after my trip, I started my first semester as a second-year pharmacy student. The coursework took a different turn from the first year, going more in-depth in the practice of pharmacy. Therapeutic courses consist of learning about the disease state and treatment algorithm used to treat and (possibly) prevent complications as a result of the disease. I learned about the treatments used for gastrointestinal and neuropsychiatric disorders. I also completed my health fair outreach hours required by the school.
Following my semester, I enjoyed 3 weeks off in December, during which I caught up with a few friends and saw some movies: The Hobbit, Lincoln, and Skyfall. I also managed to complete Castlevania: Dawn of Sorrow and read a few books. Although I only read 11 out of 12 books, I was pleased to read something other than the textbook. As for meeting goals, I completed my 2011 travel journals but failed to regularly exercise and read pharmacy-related (or non-fiction articles).
In 2013, I plan to
Reduce clutter by not buying unnecessary items.
Balance work and school appropriately.
Relieve my anger/irritation in a peaceful manner.
Be flexible. Accept what cannot be changed and let go.
Exercise regularly to relieve stress (30 minutes/day)
Limit internet usage to 1-2 hours daily (Exception: Checking school email and resource website). Also, includes smart phone usage.