January 1, 2021

2020 Retrospective

Let's start with the obvious: 2020 did not go exactly as planned for anyone. When I look back at my 2019 Retrospective, it's funny looking at what I thought 2020 would be like, and what it ended up being instead.

Making the Best of 2020

2020 started off with an exciting milestone for me as I joined the Vue.js core team and started a brand new Vue.js podcast: Enjoy the Vue. And then to top it off, I got to attend VueConfUS in person and had an incredible time teaching a workshop and emceeing the conference with my amazing co-host Maria Lamardo.

Maria and I in our dino costumes for VueConfUS 2020

And though it started off well, the reality is that whatever plan I had for the rest of year was out of the window. With all plans disrupted by the pandemic, like everyone else, I made the best I could out of the situation.

Separation from Community

Like many others, the separation from friends and family has been a difficult one. But perhaps one thing that I might comment on which is perhaps more unique to our community is the massive shift from in-person events to remote events. This yielded some fascinating lessons learned when it came to trying to navigate this world as a speaker, organizer and attendee.

And while some of the organic aspects of meeting people in the community at conferences were lost, I will say the glimmer of sunshine I found in the transition from in-person to remote events is that I was able to meet people in the community who would not have been able to attend the event otherwise.

Struggling to be Productive

As many have experienced, the pandemic took a toll on people's mental health and productivity. And just like everyone else, I also struggled with productivity because while work provided a much needed distraction from the rest of the world, it also added stress and pressure whether intentional or not. There were many aspirations to do X or Y thing, but I often found myself struggling to put the pieces together when it came down to it.

Searching for a Distraction

In trying to do my part in the pandemic, this meant that most of my time was spent indoors. My place isn't really big, so naturally I found myself spending many hours trying new things in hopes that it would help get me through each day.

Like most experiments, it was been a lot of trial and error. I mean a lot of trial and error. Many hours were spent trying different things and often resulting in dead ends. Here are just some of the things I've tried:

  • Yoga
  • Knitting
  • Communication Workshop
  • Podcast
  • Voice Coach
  • Brand Strategy
  • Ukulele Lessons
  • Live Streaming
  • Second-Brain / Zettelkasten
  • Productivity Systems
  • YouTube

And I haven't even listed all the random tech, gear and gizmos I purchased trying to keep my sanity in the midst of the year.

To be fair though, it hasn't been a gigantic downhill since this all started. In addition to having the chance to work with the incredible teams at Vue Mastery and Cypress.io, one of the biggest highlights from this year was having the opportunity to join Netlify's DX team and help with the launch of Jamstack Explorers, a free video learning platform. And to top it off, I even got to publish my own Composition API course on there as well.

Next Steps

Unlike last year, I won't try and make any big proclamations about what 2021 will be like. I just know that I will keep trying to make the best of each day and try to live it according to a set of principles and values I can be proud of. And if I can end the day each "good tired", then that will be enough for me.

With all that said, while it's certainly been a challenging year, I am incredibly grateful to everyone who made helped make the best out of it. Here's to 2021 and finding a way forward, one day at a time.