2020 was one of the most challenging yet memorable year of our life. Challenging because we were dealing with lockdown stress, being productive at work, organizing my brother's marriage, all amidst pandemic. Memorable because we were spending more time together with Dhruvan.
I've read the following 8 books as a part of the Goodreads 2020 challenge.
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I had a tough time getting my iPhone's battery replaced due to the pandemic. With all my contacts, 2FA codes in it, I found it painful to configure the replacement device. It made me realize how dependent I've become on a particular platform. I took this as an opportunity to move all my digital dependencies to open standards that are independent of both Android and iOS. I started consolidating all my contacts across accounts in a single vcf file. If I need to make any contact change, I'll do it on this file, and then have it imported to my devices. Similarly, moved away from standalone authenticator apps to Authy to sync my 2FA codes across devices.
I'm planning to switch between Android and iPhone frequently to keep my dependency in check. I intend to format the device before using it to check the reliability of my tech-independent strategy. Currently, I'm using an Android with minimal set of apps.
This year I donated to the Free Software Foundation, Wikipedia, and Mozilla.
Working from home had freed-up 2 hours of commute time for my other works. I was insanely productive during the first two months of the lockdown. I read 4 books, made huge progress in all my side projects, checked off a lot of pending items from my to-do list, all using the newly available time. The problem with being too productive is that your days become monotonously boring. With highly optimized daily routines and no physical activity, I burned out. I couldn't gather myself to focus at all.
While I was struggling with this, Amma & appa were having a good time away gardening at our home backyard.
One of the things that 2020 had taught me is that you need to have a real physical hobby that is not related to your work. This is necessary to recharge your mind and body. Gardening would serve as a better option than reading books. Reading books is great, but it complements my work. With gardening, you get a chance to be with Nature.
We made good progress on the financial front. I & Lakshmi opened a joint account for managing our home expenses. I closed all insurance policies except a term, stopped my SIP in ELSS, and started investing in an index fund for the long term.
Joining the Gym was one of the best things I did in 2020. It felt great and helped me to recharge myself. I'm planning to work on my fitness goals and improve my eating habits in 2021.
Though 2020 was challenging, we never had any shortage of celebration. Saravanan, my younger brother got married. We had invited only a few close friends and family members. His marriage was simple yet beautiful surely one of the best marriages that we'd seen.
The real reason why 2020 became memorable was solely due to Dhruvan. Few first moments in life that are always special. The moments that won't happen again. The moments that you should never miss. You should consider yourself lucky if you get to witness them. We witnessed one such moment. We captured the moment Dhruvan walked for the very first time. With all the screams, and laughter he ran across our living room. I'm sure with the video, the moment will remain with us for eternity. I want to play the video to him when gets the age to understand it. With him around, our days were filled with pleasant surprises. I've captured boatloads of videos running into multiple GBs of all the cute things he said and did. For this very reason, 2020 will always be a memorable one for me and Lakshmi.
A recap of 2020’s goals
Unlike last year, I want to set one goal specific for each of the foundational(family, health, and work) pillars of my life.
Though things did not go the way we expected, I am grateful that we all made it to 2021. With vaccines around, I hope 2021 will be a great year for all of us.
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