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Revisiting 2016’s Life Goals

Back in 2016 I created a list of goals I wished to had accomplished in that year, within five years, and within 10.

The years between 2003 and 2018 were a wibbly-wobbly mess of depression and not knowing what I should do with my life. Things rocked around and changed course a lot.

But I figured if I didn’t set any kind of targets, I wouldn’t get anywhere.

So let’s look at how I went with those goals…

Goals for 2016

Have a blog with 3000 subscribers

That didn’t happen.

I think the reason I wished for this was so I could have an ego boost. Also, so I could have a viable website to monetise.

At the time, my friendships were not very strong. And I was especially craving fame and recognition over my web design/development skills. I wanted to become “known” in my LARP and roleplaying communities. (I even became president of the Conquest Convention organising committee. And still am now.) And yet despite all this, I still felt like a nobody in these circles.


On an aside: It kind of is, and isn’t my fault that I “feel like a nobody” in the roleplaying/LARP circles. My anxiety, lack of confidence and aspie-like traits make it difficult to build rapport with people. And well… from what I’ve observed, a large portion of RP-ers also bear these qualities.

From what I’ve observed, neurotypical people seem to assume that atypical people will naturally herd together and get along well in their crazy way. That really hasn’t been my case. Where I struggle to uphold a conversation with a neurotypical person, it gets exponentially more difficult with someone who is also struggling to converse.


Ultimately it didn’t happen that year because I procrastinated too much, and hadn’t fully mastered SEO by then. My personal brand name changed often (due to indecision, and me being unsettled on my personal identity) and that didn’t help.

I still would like to be “internet famous” in some stretch of the word. I was hoping to achieve vanity numbers with the Tea With Louise and/or the Hey Louise brands. But I have found myself lacking the energy to do anything with TWL. And I feel as though the efforts I’m putting into HL should be best invested in helping the brand of my employer.

Get my membership with AWIA

Didn’t happen.

At the time, it seemed like a good idea to join AWIA (the Australian Web Industry Association) to try and boost my professional profile. Ultimately, I ended up joining the informal, local WordPress community, and that worked out much better for me.

Have a competent understanding of Angular.js and/or React.js.

Nope.

No forces in this universe could force me to learn more JavaScript just so I could continue to call myself a “developer”. 😅

Film/produce at least 3 short videos for promotional purposes.

Nope, that didn’t happen in 2016. I did, however, start putting together website ‘how-to’ and ‘what is…’ videos in 2017.

Figure out how to get preprocessors to work on my computer. And Actually get comfortable with using the command line…?

Also, didn’t happen. I figured I’d keep writing CSS the old fashioned way. This was so I could prioritise getting work done over learning a new thing.

On the plus side, I think these days you don’t need to know anything too technical to run a CSS preprocessor. 🙂

Convince people that I’m actually a better designer than developer…

The thought behind this goal was that, because the word “developer” showed up too much on my work history, it implied the impossible; That I had a degree in computer science, knew JavaScript, and was essentially a “programmer”.

I’m not actually sure how to qualify this goal. But I think my design skills began to improve around late 2017 – early 2018.


Within Five Years of 2016

It hasn’t been five years, but…

Attend a WordPress camp, or other developer conference outside of Melbourne.

Yes, I did do that! I went to a WordCamp in Sydney in 2018. It was fantastic.

I would love to do more, but in my personal battle against climate change, it might not happen. I refuse to fly out of Melbourne more than 2-3 times per year. (Tom and I already have at least one flight to Perth planned.)

Attend a LARP in another country.

No, and I’m going to bench that goal indefinitely, since I don’t do LARP anymore.

Attend a gaming convention in another state or country.

No, and I haven’t been thinking too much about it. I can get the range of games I’d like to play here, in Victoria.

Be earning a decent passive income from blog mentioned above.

Ah, the idea that I could stick a few unobtrusive ads and affiliate links on my blog, and all my money troubles would be gone. No that hasn’t happened. It’s not too late to consider this though – it probably won’t happen soon.

Co-author an app/software with someone.

Not happened. But I’m very keen to develop a WordPress plugin and have it noticed!

Speak at a conference/seminar!

I spoke on a microphone at several random business networking events. It wasn’t planned or anything, and it didn’t amount to any business. I would love to speak at a WordCamp, but I lack the free time to prepare for that.

Win an award for something I designed, photographed, filmed, authored, or co-authored.

No, hasn’t happened. I could never figure out what kind of award I would qualify for.


Within 10 Years of 2016

There’s still a chance to do some of these!

Have been part of designing/co-authoring a LARP, tabletop, or board game.

No. I don’t ever see this happening.

Have attended LARPs in at least two other countries.

Nup. This goal has been placed on the bench, for reasons mentioned above.

Have met at least one of my idols/heroes in person.

Technically, yes. I Skyped with some people who I was previously doing coaching with via forum post/recorded audio responses.

Have my own house where I can be as messy or neat as I want!

Hmm. I’m not sure if this implied moving out of my parent’s place, living on my own, or with a partner. Suffice to say, I (at time of writing this) live in an apartment with just one other flatmate. I am only as messy/neat as I want because she’s (as the original tenant) set the tone of how messy/neat she wants to be. 🙃

I think I had hopes I’d be happily married/in a committed de-facto relationship by this point. (Whereby I’d be with a partner who accepts my level of messy/neat-ness.)


Okay, that’s a wrap! I’ve completed only a very small number of these things, but I’m okay with that. The winds have changed many times for me, and I’ve had to readjust my sails every time.

Have you ever set life goals for 5 years? 10? How did you go?