I tend to get annoyingly nostalgic around New Years Eve, and seeing that it is the last Monday of the year, I thought it would be fitting to look back on all the good and the bad that occurred in 2018. It’s easy to consume your mind with the things you didn’t do, or even failed. Instead, I like to take the last few days of the year and reflect on what I did accomplish and the hard things I overcame because I often let the stress of personal doubt bear more weight than it should. In today’s blog post, I compiled a list of my 2018 in numbers by calculating numerous things that I did or that happened to me.
I won’t regale you with events that occurred around the world, in this country, or in the state I call home because the news cycle is practically moving at the speed of light and we were all there to witness it. Instead, I did the math to determine the events that affected the small parameters of my life this year, and which made me more me.
How many college degrees I earned: 1 bachelor of arts degree after 5.5 years.
Number of close friends who graduated college: 3 close friends graduated with their bachelors degrees too.
How many articles/blogs I wrote and published professionally: 19 articles/blogs/other content.
How many times my articles were picked up by other local publications: 15+ stories picked up. (Unfortunately, some articles are no longer available on certain news sites, which I found through broken links I had saved.)
How many people I interviewed: 47 sources interviewed. (Some of these people were interviewed multiple times for more than one story but only counted once. This list was compiled by counting the sources in my published articles and transcribed interviews, not including a few unplanned or short phone calls.)
How many times I was interviewed: 6 times. (Fun fact: I was hired after every interview for jobs and internships this year.)
How many people that interviewed me (for jobs, articles, random e-book): 12 people.
How many jobs/internships I applied for: 7 applications sent. (Fun fact: I applied three times this year to one company until I was hired as an intern.)
How many jobs/internships I worked: 5 paying internships/jobs. (I consistently worked 2-3 jobs a week throughout this year. Just started my fifth one on December 28.)
Number of books finished: 4 books, and all thanks to my friends’ book club! (I started my fifth one this month, “Children of Time.”)
Number of Taco Tuesdays attended: 7 Taco Tuesdays. (My close friends and I get together on the first Tuesday of every month with plenty of taco ingredients and make one big dinner. We started this tradition in June 2018, and we have never missed a Tuesday!)
New piercings or tattoos: Zip. (I got my last piercing 4 years ago.)
How many caffeinated beverages I purchased: I bought and drank about 240 coffees and teas this year, averaging to 20 a month. (Not including free beverages or when I used cash or gift cards, which was probably a small handful of times. This number is way too high, but now I get headaches when I go 24 hours without caffeine so it’s a work in progress.)
Number of vacations taken: ZERO. The furthest I went for fun was either the city of Cave Creek or Tempe. (Besides being 10-miles north of the U.S.-Mexico border while on assignment for Cronkite News, which was definitely not a vacation.)
Miles driven in my car: Roughly 800 miles per month, which was about 9,600 miles this year. (This is “bad” because my car is a little old man that I refuse to give up/can’t afford to replace.)
How many times I had to get various parts of my car repaired: 7 times, and one tow from Downtown Phoenix to North Phoenix.
How many elections I voted in: 2 elections. (If I am remembering correctly.)
Average number of hours worked each week: about 40 hours each week at various jobs/internships.
Number of college classes taken: 6 completed college classes. (5 classes at ASU and 1 at Rio Salado Community College.)
Number of concerts attended: 3 concerts including The Band Camino, Dermot Kennedy, and Night Riots. (I already have my tickets for three other concerts in the first half of 2019, so hopefully I will be attending many more next year.)
Minutes of music listened with Spotify: About 23,250 minutes.
Number of new songs I listened to on Spotify: About 2,940 songs. (Spotify is the only way I listen to music so this is pretty accurate.)
Minutes of podcasts listened to on NPR One: About 19,400 minutes. (I average about 1.5 full podcast episodes every morning.)
Photos taken and saved on my iPhone: about 1,050. (Not counting ones I deleted.)
Posts to my Instagram: 83 posts to Instagram.
Number of HFM blogs posted: 5 blogs posted here, including this one.
In short, this year I focused on myself and my future as a writer and journalist. I was selfish, but in a healthy way. This was by far the most difficult year in my short life because of how far I was pushed past my comfort zone. My inner-circle of friends narrowed and my experience as a writer exceeded everything I had done before. With a whole year behind me, I am really looking forward to pursuing a career with the knowledge I gained and even experiencing the hiccups along the way with the ones I love and the new faces I meet. I hope that 2018 treated you well, and I hope that 2019 is even better.