Photo by Debby Hudson / Unsplash

A New Year filled with new opportunity

Reflections Jan 3, 2022

2021 was no doubt filled with more change and excitement than any other year of my life. To ring in 2022 I'd like to reflect on my best moments from 2021, and set some hopes and goals for this upcoming year!

A short recap of 2021

Holy cow where do I even start? So much happened so I guess I will jump in with the biggest page turning moment.  I closed a huge chapter of my life as I graduated college with a bachelor's degree in Data Analytics. It was certainly bittersweet knowing I would be moving away from some of my best friends of 4 years. They are the honestly some of the best people, and I know many of them will continue to be. a major part of my life for years to come. To commemorate them I made this video sharing some of the best times from my senior year of college.


Following the close of that chapter, I started a new one as I took a leap and moved across country to Salt Lake City, Utah to pursue a career and new beginnings. I wrote a blog post about what went into my decision.

I moved across the country to a state I had never been... why?
Why would someone leave their life behind to move across the country? Read what inspired me to take this personal leap.

Speaking of writing, I started this very website that you are reading right now! I have always wanted to run my own site, and even attempted to create one back in 2019 but never followed through on it. Well this year I took another stab at it, and now here we are! I am so happy with how it turned out after spending admittedly too many hours on the design. I completed it though and now I get to explore and improve myself as a writer!

Lastly, I spent some more effort on my YouTube. This has been my favorite creative venture by far. For me, videos create a more lasting memory of my life's adventures and I love having the ability to glance back on some of my favorite moments. I also have thoroughly enjoyed exploring new camera techniques, gear, and editing tricks.

The last part big chunk of the year that was so incredible was the numerous new adventures I had. Here is a list of a few off the top of my head:

  • Finally got to one of the more remote national parks and my parents' favorite place in the world, Isle Royale National Park
  • Did my first backpacking trip alone!
  • Caught my first ever cutthroat and brook trout!
  • Took a spring break trip to Nashville with a couple of my good friends
  • Conquered my fear of heights and hiked Angel's Landing at Zion National Park
  • Branched out and met a bunch of new friends in Utah
  • Skied out west for the first time
  • Hiked 18 miles in one single day. Definitely the most I had ever done
  • Professionally, started my first full-time job in Data Analytics for Lucid Software. Read more about analytics and my journey here
My parents, my sister, and I before beginning our 5 day backpacking trip at Isle Royale National Park

So much more has happened but I will keep the list short and move on to some even more exciting stuff. The future.....

Looking forward to 2022

I try to live life in the moment as much as possible. Life is better that way when you really appreciate what is happening around you and who you are spending the time with. Having said that, it is hard not to be excited at the endless possibilities in store for this year. I now live on my own, making a decent salary. As they say, the world is my oyster. There are truly endless possibilities for 2022.

Photo by Anne Nygård / Unsplash

Goals

I want to start by listing out a few of my personal goals for the new year. Keep in mind this is in no particular order, just some things I am currently thinking about.

  • Get better at skiing. I now live within 30 minutes of "the greatest snow on Earth". I need to start carving more and skidding less haha. My turns definitely need some work.
The Greatest Snow On Earth | Discover Utah Snow
Utah snow is known as “The Greatest Snow on Earth” by skiers and snowboarders. Read on to find out why.
  • Visit the rest of Utah's national parks. I hit two of Utah's mighty 5 this year when I visited Zion and Bryce Canyon. This year, I want to round it out by making it to Arches, Canyonlands, and Capitol Reef.
  • Travel internationally again. Barring no COVID-19 related shenanigans, it is one of my top goals to get out of the country. I already am starting to formulate a few plans so make sure to subscribe to the blog and my YouTube to get recaps/videos of those adventures when they (hopefully) happen!
  • Become comfortable conversating in Spanish. I have put a lot of time recently into refining and learning more Spanish. I believe it to be such a shame that most Americans only speak English. I also come from a hispanic background that I am quite proud of. Needless to say I want to put my learnings into practice and actually become conversational. Also... *wink wink.... Spanish might be important with some of my travel plans.
  • Learn how to use a camera. I have my eye on purchasing my first mirrorless camera this year. I am excited to explore a new aspect of videography and content creation while hopefully improving the output I share with the world.
  • Use my car camping setup more. The outdoor locations around me are all waiting to be explored so I just need to get out there and go.
How to build a car camping setup in your SUV for cheap
I built a bed platform in the back of my 2020 Hyundai Tucson for car camping. It was a great experience, and I want to share my learnings with you!
  • Continue to grow professionally in my career. Lastly, I want to always improve and grow with my profession in data analytics. I couldn't have asked for a better start in 2021, and I hope I only go up from here.

Overall, 2021 has been an exciting change of pace for my life. Graduating, moving to Utah, starting a website, continuing to pursue YouTube, on top of the adventures that filled in the cracks certainly kept me busy.

I can't wait to see what this year brings, and I hope you follow my journey. Connect with me on my socials below and make sure to subscribe to the blog!

Until next time!

-Hawkin

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Hawkin Saeger

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