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My 2022 Year in Review: To The Moon?

My 2022 Year in Review: To The Moon?

A year in retrospect- learning, living and aiming high

Israel Oyetunji's photo
Israel Oyetunji
ยทJan 10, 2023ยท

9 min read

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Table of contents

  • Timeline
  • Highlights
  • Goals for 2023 ๐Ÿš€
  • Wrapping Up

Reading through my journal and reflecting on the past year, I can't help but feel grateful for all the experiences that 2022 brought me. Of course, it had its fair share of highs and lows, achievements and lessons learned.

So, you might be wondering why I named this post To the Moon. Well, it's a phrase that's popular among crypto traders and folks in the tech community. It means experiencing astronomical growth, you know like a rocket shooting off to the moon.

That was my mindset for the whole year, aiming high, shooting for the stars. But, did I make it to the moon? No, not quite. But I did take off, and that's what is important :)

You don't have to be great to start, but you have to start to be great. โ€” Zig Ziglar

With that said, let's dive into how the journey began and how it's going. My goal in sharing my story is to not only give you an inside look into my journey but to also serve as a source of inspiration for you to have faith in God and pursue your passions.

Timeline

Q1: January to March

At the start of 2022, I found myself struggling with a lack of direction and motivation. However, that changed when I came across the Year in Review articles of some amazing developers, like Kadet, Yinka Adedire, Victor IK and Ruth Ikegah. Their stories stood out to me and served as an inspiration to set my own goals for the year.

Among these goals include spending time to hone my skills, being active on Social media(Tech Twitter and Linkedin), and building quality relationships with friends and family.

Here are the highlights for the first quarter:

  • Got AWS certified! I set a personal challenge to earn a Cloud certification, even though I don't plan to pursue a career in Cloud Engineering. Reading through all the AWS whitepapers was quite boring and draining, but it was a rewarding way to start the new year.

  • Took my first step into content creation by writing my first technical article ๐ŸŽ‰

  • Tried my luck applying to about 10 technical writing jobs after writing my third technical article, but I didn't get any callback.

  • Joined freeCodeCamp as a Contributing Writer.

  • Completed The Creative HTML5 and CSS3 Course by Dev Ed.

  • Relearned Javascript concepts and methods.

  • Finally started learning React using Youtube videos and playlists.

  • At this point, I was struggling financially and had to seek ways to pay for my data subscription. I even had to borrow money from a couple of friends, it was that bad.

Q2: April to June

Things started to get interesting during this period:

  • I received a congratulatory mail on April 1st from ContentLab, inviting me to join their team as a Technical Author and Specialist.

  • Started making $$ from writing.

  • Started getting more engagements on my Twitter because of the published articles.

  • Got my first stars on a project on Github.

  • Received a couple of rejection emails that were difficult to take, but we move!

  • My productivity increased when I started using Vite for React projects. Even wrote an article on Vite that currently has 11k+ views on Hashnode.

  • Joined HitSubscribe as a freelance writer in May.

  • 2 of my articles got featured on Google's homepage.

  • Started contributing to Open Source.

  • Got accepted as a writer in the guest author program at Smashing magazine.

  • I made a horrible mistake at work which affected my credibility ๐Ÿ˜ข

  • One of my articles made it to the Honorable Mentions category in Hashnode's Writeathon.

  • I was generally happier and more confident in myself as an individual because I was more self-aware of the value I was providing.

  • Became a community moderator for a Twitter community, Level Up Coding which currently has 7k+ members.

Q3: July to September

This period was a rollercoaster, because of the many bad experiences I had, but I also had my fair share of good moments.

  • My mental health was pretty much down the drain at some point, but I made a conscious effort to not let my thoughts spiral out of control. And you know what helped? My Spotify playlist. It was like my own personal therapy session. Music has a way of soothing the soul, you know?

  • I got really into playing Garena Free Fire, which ended up being an addiction.

  • Worked on a very cool app, but I can't say much about it since it's confidential.

  • Treated myself to a brand new phone and I started financially supporting my family by helping to fund some projects at home.

  • Landed my first professional Frontend Engineer role at a startup and I started working with Typescript and Next.js, which is a very sweet combination if you ask me.

  • I lost a couple of gigs because frankly, I was lazy, and didn't want to stress myself anymore.

  • The rate at which I published articles reduced significantly.

  • Tried to revive my workouts, but the motivation went back to zero just after a few days.

Q4: October to December

  • Completed my first Hacktoberfest by making contributions to various projects through technical documentation.

  • Became a maintainer for an open-source project, Portfolio Ideas.

  • I had the opportunity to speak at a Twitter Space in December, where I shared my insights on how to scale a technical writing career. It was a great experience and I'm looking forward to more opportunities to share my knowledge in the future ๐Ÿคฉ

Highlights

Here's a quick summary of everything that happened last year.

Good

  • Discovered a new passion(Technical Writing)

  • Grew my online presence.

  • I was accepted as a technical writer for several publications, although I didn't write for all of them. However, I was able to write for a variety of B2B, B2C, and SaaS organizations, including TomTom, StackHawk, SolarWinds, and others. I enjoyed the diverse range of topics and the opportunity to continue learning.

  • Connected with, and made friends with some wonderful people on tech twitter.

  • Improved my relationship with my family and friends.

  • Travelled to Lagos with my friends on two different occasions. It was pretty fun.

  • I was able to be a better friend.

  • Decided to start writing technical articles as a means to share and solidify my knowledge, and also build a reputation for myself. I wrote a total of 20 articles, including paid articles (we go again next year ๐Ÿš€โœจ )

  • Overall, I think I did well at managing to balance school responsibilities with my pursuits in coding, technical writing, and maintaining a social life.

  • Played the guitar at a couple of interesting events.

  • I was surprised to be recognized for my articles, both offline and online, by people I didn't know. It was amusing and I must admit, it was quite flattering ๐Ÿ˜‚

  • I was able to read and understand way faster than before, which really helped my academics.

  • Got 4 of my articles featured on daily.dev with over 300 upvotes.

  • Became freeCodeCamp's 2022 top contributor. I hope to do more in 2023!

Bad

  • During the ASUU strike, I, unfortunately, gained weight due to my unhealthy habits of eating junk food and spending all day sitting in front of my laptop.

  • I wasn't able to put as much time and effort into my personal projects as I had hoped, which included crafting a new portfolio.

  • I couldn't read as many books as I would have loved to.

  • My relationship with God had its struggles, I experienced some deep existential crises that caused my faith (being Christian) to waver. But, I am glad to say that I am recovering. I am grateful to know that God remains faithful and continues to show that He's intentional about me.

  • I came up with a lot of ideas for apps to develop and articles to write, but unfortunately, I wasn't able to get to work on them.

  • Procrastinated a whole lot.

  • Made mistakes that cost me a lot of money.

  • I wasn't opportune to attend any tech events.

  • Didn't get any merch or swag ๐Ÿ˜ฉ

  • Didn't apply to as many jobs as I should have

Goals for 2023 ๐Ÿš€

As we reflect on the past year, it's also important to think about what we want to achieve in the future. One key aspect of this is setting goals for the upcoming year. In this section, I'll share my goals for 2023 and what I hope to accomplish in the coming months.

From professional aspirations to personal development, I'll be sharing my thoughts on what I want to accomplish in the new year. The purpose of this is not only to reflect on the past but also to set an intention and roadmap for the future. I invite you to join me as we explore the aspirations I have for 2023 and hopefully, this section will inspire you to think about your own goals for the year.

My primary objective for the new year is to deepen my personal relationship with God. I would also like to:

  • Launch at least 2 new products.

  • Get accepted into more guest author programs, and write more articles.

  • Make more contributions to open-source projects.

  • Dive into mobile development by exploring frameworks like React Native and Flutter.

  • Attend and speak at more tech events, twitter spaces, and meetups.

  • Read more books and expand my knowledge base.

  • Get new equipment for my music hobby, specifically a guitar (or two) and an effect pedal.

  • Get a new Macbook.

  • Pay more attention to my health by working out and eating healthily.

  • Help more people break into tech.

  • Win a hackathon.

  • Improve my skillset and achieve mastery in software engineering and technical writing.

  • Increase my visibility and reputation in my career field.

  • Save more money and start building passive income streams.

  • Aim to earn my first million(NGN).

  • Hopefully, move out and rent an apartment.

Wrapping Up

In conclusion, as we reflect on the past, it's important to remember that amidst the challenges we faced, there were also things to be grateful for. Whether it was the support of loved ones, moments of triumph, or valuable lessons learned, these moments helped to guide us through difficult times.

As we look ahead to 2023, let's carry that gratitude with us and use it to set our goals and intentions for the coming year. Let's aim to be better, achieve more, and make a positive impact on the world. Let's remember to be thankful for all that we have and for the new opportunities that come our way.

I would like to extend my deepest gratitude to all those who helped make this year a truly amazing one. This includes my family, friends, church community, bosses in the tech industry, and many others whose names I may not have mentioned. I would like to specifically thank Daveyhert, Victor IK, Victor Eke(Chief of Open Source), B.Stella, Cess, Peace, Promise, Victory, Sheifunmi, Favourite Jome, Boluwatife the Vue Knight, Kenny, Israel Odejobi, Idris, Taofiq, Timi Lawani, Harry and Blessing(Bibi) for their support and engagement with my posts. Your help and contributions have not gone unnoticed and I am deeply grateful.

Every year is a chance for a fresh start, let's make the most of it. Thank you for being a part of this journey and let's look forward to an even more amazing 2023. Together, let's strive for the stars and beyond. WAGMI! To The Moon! ๐Ÿš€โœจ

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