The year 2020 is definitely a unique year in many ways. There have been a lot of ups and downs for me personally – and I understand, from a global perspective as well.
It’s a year to forget for the global populace of the world, but for me, it also serves as a year that I will fondly remember for years to come. Again, I understand that the pandemic is affecting millions of people globally, but that is not to say that in my own experiences, the year 2020 wasn’t fruitful for myself.
I started out the year pretty much hungover and still devastated by the loss of my father in the middle of 2019. Whole January, I pretty much did nothing but game. There’s been some freelancing work on the site that I have been doing, but not much else. I finished Final Fantasy XV in this time period and delved deep into the lore of The Witcher 3, just in time for its Netflix release.
Certainly, I needed a job. I needed to make something with my life. I was pretty much a nobody, though I always considered myself a diamond in the rough just waiting for that rightful opportunity to shine.
In the succeeding couple of months, I did find some work, but one of those businesses had to close shop because it’s here… the pandemic. COVID-19 drastically changed my lifestyle – actually our lifestyle. That is to say, the whole direction the lives of yours truly, my girlfriend and my closest of friends has immensely been affected by the pandemic.
In March, I was diagnosed with Acid Reflux. For a moment, I even thought I had COVID because of the breathing difficulties that I have been experience along with a number of other symptoms. It got to the point where I almost thought I’d die… turns out, I’ve been just breathing wrong when in panic, which made my succeeding breaths feel even more burdensome and difficult. Glad to have that in the books and well behind me now! Although, I do have GERD now, I guess it has come part of my daily routine to have moments of heartburn and awkward breathing.
At any rate, my girlfriend departed back to her hometown Mati in March. With the local lock downs in place, we would not see each other again until July. Quite a period which also covered our anniversary, unfortunately. Not complaining. There are bigger problems in the world than missing out on being together on an anniversary!
In May, I mad the acquaintance with a German client, whom I just succinctly call Matt. The work load he has given me – translating things here and there, posting in forum sites on his behalf – has helped me get back on my feet immensely. I had some kind of purpose. I had some money in my pocket and I continued to live, so to say.
Once June came around, I wasn’t alone at home anymore. For about a month and a half I was joined by one of my closest friend’s girlfriend. She became my room mate for that period, with my buddy coming around every now and then until they eventually settled down in the ground floor of the house-next-door that we are renting out. It was such a joy to have someone with me during those struggling days. Her arrival was timely, because my former Padawan Learner and cousin Gabriel has just started planning his move out of the Germansion. With her around, I had some sort of an accountability buddy. I had to work when she was working and so on. I couldn’t just chill and do nothing because I was not known for that kind of behavior back then.
In July… finally. My girlfriend returned home and we were happily reunited after an absence of almost a third of a year. Also, my friend Rodrigo joined the mix on a more permanent basis as well around this period. And so, the Germansion Cluster was born.
Late July, I started to realize that Rigo was in quite a slump. Just as I was before him. I knew how hard it is to get unstuck and make something meaningful from scratch… so I tried to help him out. Luckily, it turned out that all he needed was a little push in the right direction and he carried himself throughout the mud after that. Thanks to my girlfriend and her friend, Abigail, Rodrigo and were pointed into the direction of the company I started working with. A local company based here in Davao that mainly employs Virtual Assistants to work with clients called founders.
I didn’t quite know what was in store here for me. I haven’t even properly cited a position that I wanted in the company. I just laid down my credentials and work experiences and I’m glad that these have worked in my favor eventually. After being a trainee with the company for a month in August, I was immediately employed as a Team Leader. And so, Squad 26 was born. I had the most amazing and cooperative team ever. I’m glad that that my leadership style came across effectively and that until this very day, we’re still talking and closely working together at times.
Squad 26 was with me for about 3 months. A few people had been forced out of the squad for some performance issues – or better yet rather big expectations from their respective clients, but eventually the core group stuck together. In my time as team leader, I have learned so much about the role itself, the company and the people that I was supervising. It was a joy. This joy wouldn’t last though, as I was promoted to become the Training Department and was quickly assigned the Training Supervisor role – which I am still in.
In my first month, it was quite a challenge for me. The reassignment was abrupt. From one week to another, my team was quickly dispersed and dissolved. Each member was assigned to another team. But at the end of the day, for at least a month, they still huddled together and helped each other out. It was just an amazing confirmation for myself that I was able to empower them to be independent and selfless. Strength in numbers!
And yes, back to the new position being a challenge for me. I got off the wrong side of the bed, you could say, with the existing staff of the training team. I’m still not quite there yet in molding the department how I envision it to run, but I’m getting there one step at a time. I think I have made a good positive working bond with the team at large as well. I was also able to identify a number of staff members that are willing to take this long journey with me in polishing up the training department and upping up the ante in terms of quality.
Personally, I want to believe that I am on the right track. It has encouraging that the company recognized my efforts from the get go, allowing me to become a team lead, letting me be the training supervisor and also awarding me the team player of the month award in its inaugural presentation. Just like with anything that I take immensely seriously, I won’t settle for less. I won’t settle for good enough.
I’ll make the best out of this opportunity that was given to me.
On a personal note, I understand that I have had too much of a work-related focus. The relationship with my girlfriend has taken a backseat at times. But that is not to say that I don’t love her or care for her. Just that I have had my eyes on the business for a bit too much. Struck while the iron is hot.
But definitely, I am slowly trying to find a more delicate balance between my role’s responsibilities, the extra work that I love to do and my personal life. At the moment, I just don’t feel a burn out is near me and I am enjoying helping others out that I don’t even consider it as work. Surely though, I need to be wise with how and where my daily energy gets to be spent on. I am not an infinite resource. Time is a finite resource.
It’s a struggle for me, definitely. But everyday, I am trying to work on this aspect of my life.
Edit: Nope. Due to some unforeseen circumstances I am not enjoying work. I might be moving on to another project entirely if things don’t change quickly.
At any rate, I hope that the world can recover from this onslaught. I hope that the new normal that’s slowly settling into place will not be far off from what we have been accustomed to before. It’s heartbreaking to see empty stadiums like the Allianz Arena or the Signal Iduna Park. It’s just downright eerie to see everyone in masks instead of being greeted by smiles when your trudging through downtown.
The pandemic may have crashed the party this year. The pandemic has kept many within their homes – or worse, taken many, many lives… but nonetheless, 2020 is the year that I had this breakthrough of mine. 2020 is just the start of greater things to follow.
SOME NOTABLE PURCHASES MADE THIS YEAR
- Switch Controller
- ASUS Gaming Monitor
- Dareu 925 Headphone
- Dareu 880 TKL
- Tecware Exo Elite Mouse
- Ryzen 3 Computer for my daughter’s online classes
- Sony WH 1000X-M4
- FIFA 21
- Animal Crossing: New Horizons
- Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order
- Borderlands 3
- Dragon Quest XI
- Fire Emblem: Three Houses
- Resident Evil biohazard
- Plants vs Zombies: Battle for Neighborville
- Fenyx Immortal
- Watch Dogs: Legion
- Moving Out
- Rise of the Tomb Raider
- Ratched and Clank
Games that got finished this year:
- Pokemon SW/SH DLCs
- Final Fantasy 15
- South Park: Stick of Truth
- South Park: Fractured But Whole
So yeah, I haven’t really managed to finish a lot of games this year. This is something that I need to address quickly. I am playing too many games simultaneously, and some of varying controls and mechanics to them which I have to relearn every time I boot them up. lol
Who would have thought the day comes where I’d say “I wish I was as efficient in finishing games as I am in working on my daily tasks”. It’s definitely a first world problem though.
Anyways, in terms of games that came out this year, my game of the year is definitely going to be Animal Crossing: New Horizons. Watch Dog: Legions and Fenyx Immortal share second and third, I could practically alter the two of them. This is of course only based on the games that I was able to purchase for myself and play this year. Sure, there are many, many more games that came out this year like the FF 7 Remake, Ghost of Tsushima, and so on. I haven’t played any of them though, so I won’t rank them here.
With all of this said and done, 2021 promises to be yet another groundbreaking year for me. I can feel it in my guts that great things await me, my girlfriend, and hopefully my group of friends. Wherever the journey takes me, I hope that I am ready. Whatever it is that lies ahead of me, I hope that I can overcome. If not alone, then with the support group that I have around me.
I bid thee, farewell. 2020, you have been such a mixed bag of emotions. You’ve grounded people and sent many back to the drawing board, back to the basics… Making many realize what truly matters in life.