Scripting Success: A Year Two Writing Reflection

Two years ago, I started this blog as a way to keep track of projects I was interested in and how I was working on them. The end of the year is a great time for reflection. I wanted to keep track of how I configured these projects and how I built them so when I needed to go back and fix something, I remembered how I did it.

Two years later and I can say I’m pretty proud of how it has gone so far. Not everything has turned out the way I thought, but that’s not necessarily in a bad way. To wrap up my 2023, I’m going to review some achievements and missed goals for the year and talk about what I think 2024 will look like.

Table of Contents


2023 year-end reflection script

What Did I Accomplish in 2023?

Previous Goals:

Two of the 3 goals I set for myself last year were met before the year ended. I actually managed to complete the GCWM certification in January and was very excited to accomplish that early. That was a difficult test and one I had to spend a lot of time studying for. You can actually read about it here if you are interested.

The second goal that I met was my readying goal. I finished the year with 25 books completed, which exceeded my original goal. I managed to hit my goal in September, so it seemed appropriate to try and push it further. Overall, the year was split between some fiction and non-fiction with an emphasis on some big series.

reading goals accomplished!

Other Goals:

  • Lose Weight – Lost 25lbs
  • Get to the Gym Regularly – 3/4 days a week for over 6 months straight

No annual resolution would be complete if there wasn’t a weight loss goal right? Working in IT, I spend a lot of time sitting at a desk and working on a computer. Yes, I know I can get up and move around more and this year I did. I try to use the stairs whenever possible, and I started tracking my food to have a better understanding of what I am consuming.

While tracking my food was what made me the most successful with weight loss, exercising 3-4 days a week was what made me feel good. I’m reaching the age that I can’t neglect my body, and this was my year to get back in shape. I still have some work to do, but I felt much better about it when the year ended than I did when it started.

Rebuild the Home Lab

Rebuilding the Home Lab was something I wanted to do for a while. I got stuck on some random projects this year that I didn’t really need but were really cool. So, I ended up playing around with different things that I never really thought I would want in my lab. This year I learned a bunch about Linux (which I don’t use every day) and some cool open-source projects like Uptime Kuma. I had a lot of fun learning new things this year, and hope to continue that into 2024.

Reorganized GitHub

I was also very excited to reorganize my GitHub this year, but mostly because I finally started using it correctly and synced GitHub with VS Code. It was cool to start learning about branching and versioning and using those tools properly. I hope I can spend some time this year writing about it and digging more into Git and its VS Code integrations.


These Goals were Missed in 2023?

Previous Goals:

  • Write 35 articles in 2023

Yeah, I didn’t exactly do that this year. I wrote 21 which was still good, but I had a crazy year at times. A positive change was that I got a promotion at work that requires a completely different set of skills. I went from being all technical all the time to being a manager of a team and being technical less than half the time. It was a big change, and was difficult, but I’m finally getting the hang of it. As a result though, there were several months that I wasn’t working on things at work or in the lab, because I was focused on manager stuff.

This year I’m not quite so disorganized and should be able to keep my skills sharp by working on things here in the lab. Plus, training guys on my team, sometimes I feel a need to figure it out before they take a look. Who knows! We’ll see what the year brings.

Other Goals:

  • Staying Focused on Writing things I want to write about

This was something I feel like I didn’t do well. I had a few times this year where I thought something was cool, but then just wrote my version of the implementation guide, (Which probably weren’t as good as the ones I used). I didn’t really enjoy writing everything I wrote, which was kind of sad because I’m writing as a hobby. It’s not like I get paid to do this, so I should really be focused on making it what I want (Spoiler alert!).


What Goals am I setting for 2024?

  1. Write Consistently and Enjoy what I am writing about.

This year I’m going to take a different approach to some of my goals. One of the things I realized (late to the game here) was that my goals should lead to the outcome I want to achieve rather than some milestone. For example, when my goal was to get in shape, I rarely went to the gym. However, when the goal was to go to the gym 3 days a week, I ended up in getting in better shape because the goal was the act of going.

Once I got there, I knew I’d be motivated and work out. For this reason, my writing goal won’t be focused on quantity of blog posts. The main goal for writing will just be to continue enjoying it and focus more on writing whatever I want and not forcing some of my posts.

One topic in particular that I am interested in writing about is the idea of tips and tricks for solo system administrators. I read a lot of stories on Reddit about one or two man/woman IT shops, and I think a lot about how hard that must be. There is a lot of pressure to keep things working when you are part of a team, but as a solo SysAdmin, it’s got to be difficult. So, I want to spend some time writing this year about things that I think will be helpful for those heroes out there working alone, doing their best.

  1. Read 25 Books

Look this was good for 2023, and so I am increasing my goal for 2024 to last year’s final number. I want to do the same or better in 2024, and 25 gets me there.

  1. Lose More Weight – ~30lbs

I’m still a bigger guy, and while I made some good progress last year, I want to continue this year. Don’t worry though, this won’t turn out to be a blog about fitness or dieting. This will still be about the IT related things I’m into. Just know that I’ll be a little lighter as we progress. 🙂


Conclusion

Thats it! Short and sweet. If you happened to enjoy reading anything I wrote in 2023, please let me know. I can tell from the analytics that there are about 3 posts that drive like 90% of my traffic to this blog, so I’m always curious if anyone ever actually reads this stuff. It’d be cool to know if I actually helped someone out in the process. If you have read some of my content, then I appreciate you and your support of the blog. I hope that whatever you stumbled upon was helpful, and that you got some use out of whatever I shared.

Again whether or not you actually read my content, I appreciate you being here. I think these reflections are important for the mental health, and I like the idea of having something written that I can refer back to anytime. Whether or not you write about it, I hope you can spend some time and reflect on your year. What you accomplished and what you fell short on. How can you reach your goals in 2024? Are you stretching yourself, or have you been stretched and need a break? Let me know!

Thanks for reading and stopping by. Hit me up on Twitter @SeeSmittyIT to let me know what you thought of this post. Or if you are avoiding the bird site, I’m also posted up on Mastodon @[email protected]. Thanks for hanging out this year and for reading!

Smitty

Curtis Smith works in IT with a primary focus on Mobile Device Management, M365 Apps, and Azure AD. He has certifications from CompTIA and Microsoft, and writes as a hobby.

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