My 2016 Annual Review


Since 2014, I've made the habit of working on an end-of-the-year Annual Review. It's something I learned from reading Chris Guillebeau's The Happiness of Pursuit, and I can honestly say it's been the best habit I've ever picked up. (Check out 2015 & 2014 here). At end of each year, I sit down & look at what went well during the year & what didn't go so well (personally). What goals (not just resolutions) did I set for myself, and which of those did I accomplish? Then finally I set new goals for myself & write myself a mission statement for the coming year.

For 2016, I dubbed it my year of adventure. While a lot of crazy/sad things happened around the world last year, I'm personally, still riding on my high of accomplishing just that. While I didn't cross off every goal on my list, I set out to finally pursue my dream of traveling the world & I did it. That is a feeling that no one can take away from me.

I've heard so many people tell me they want to travel the world, yet so little people put in the extra WORK, those long hours & sacrifices into making their dreams a reality. 

 While in x-ray school, I thought the study load was an impossible standard, but look at me now (I'm getting paperr). I never could run more than 2 miles & blamed it on my scoliosis, but that was before I trained for 3 half marathons. This feeling you get from setting what seems like impossible goals for yourself & then constantly achieving them, will open your mind to a world of possibilities.

We are truly unstoppable & limited only by our mentalities.

Ok. Enough motivational babbling. (Can you tell I'm pretty excited?) Onto the review!

What went well in 2016

Let's just start with this infographic I made, shall we? Why? Because I'm the only one nerdy enough to make one.

  • Got a full-time x-ray tech position, with the best hours/schedule a travel-addict could ask for
  • Finally went to San Diego Comic-Con for the first time & saw Adam Savage
  • Completed my 3rd half marathon (and in Paris!)
  • Blogged more. Actually, way more! More than excited with all the photos I've gotten too.
  • Sky dived (for the first time) over the Great Barrier Reef, oh and landed on a beach. No bigs.
  • Pulled the trigger & now I have purple/lavender hair!

What didn't go so well

  • Completely threw my goal of making Youtube videos, right out the window. There are only so many hours in a day and pictures take up a lot less time to produce.
  • Only went on one hike in Washington this year. If I wasn't traveling out of the state, I was spending time with friends, sleeping or working 70+ hours a week.
  • I wanted to read a book per month last year. I read a total of 5. Again, very busy.

Goals for 2017

These goals are probably the reason I've been putting off this Annual Review. I crossed off a lot off my bucket list last year, in a real short amount of time, so I've been kind of at a lost as what to put my efforts toward next. To me, there are 2 types of people in the world. There are those who (only) do the responsible thing, work the 9 to 5, and put all their focus to developing financial assets & a family. Then there are those who put their dreams first like there's no tomorrow. I spent 2016 doing the latter, but I believe in balance, so it's time to catch up on the former. Not that I'm giving up on furthering those dreams, I've just had my share of fun. Subject to additions, here's what I have thus far: 


  • Buy myself a new (adult) car. It's time for the Scion tC of  my 16-year-old self to go.


  • Workout on a more regular basis, despite work schedule - focusing on cardio & weights.
  • Teaching myself to cook more & eat out less.


  • Spend more time actually exploring the PNW that's already around me.
  • Disney birthday trip with my girls
  • Road trip & hike Canada


  • Read at least 1 book a month (Take two!)

2017: The Year of Self-Growth

In 2017, I will direct my focus towards my own financial development as an adult, and make the jump in buying myself a well-deserved, new car. As a supplemental trade off to my traveling, I will spend more time exploring the Pacific Northwest that already surrounds me. This includes skiing in the Winter, year round hikes, and Summer road trips through the Canadian wilderness. I will have also found a regular workout rhythm, that fits my irregular work schedule. 

Hope you guys enjoyed the read. Here's to another colorful (and maybe purpler) year! Love, JEN