2017 – A Year in Reflection (Better Late than Never)

I realise I am a little late to the party with 2017 reflection posts, but I am going to do one anyway.

What an end to 2017!

As those who follow me on twitter will know, I had an eventful Christmas this year.  Don’t get me wrong, I’m sure there were a heck a lot of people who had worse Christmas for many different reasons.

I got a rather ill very quickly the weekend before Christmas with both Pneumonia and Sepsis, my chest x-ray showed my lungs covered in snow, inflammation blood count was sky high and I spent 5 days in hospital being pumped full of multiple different antibiotics.  I finally got out on Boxing Day and I have spent the last 4 weeks resting and recuperating (purposefully) with minimal technology interactions (the xbox doesn’t count).

It is a sobering thought to be told by multiple Dr’s and nurses how lucky I am, with statements like “You came in just in time”,  “I’m surprised I’m talking to you”, “I’ve not seen such a young man be so ill for a long time” and “If you were 10-15 years older, the outcome would have been very different”.

Although, i’m outstanding follow-up x-ray, luckily follow up tests have shown no lasting damage.

So how was the rest of my 2017?

The Good

  • My boy turned 2 and we’re expecting another child in May!
  • I got to go to my second VMworld in Barcelona – which was awesome.
  • I completed multiple certification milestones, including obtaining the multiple VCAP (6) certifications and VCIX (4) digital badges.
  • I worked on multiple large scale projects which kept my interest and kept me learning.
  • I made the list for vExpertvExpert Cloud and vExpert NSX.
  • I presented at my first VMUG (shout out to the crew of the NEVMUG for having faith in me).

The Bad

  • I didn’t manage to find time to expand my study enough into AWS or Azure.
  • When working abroad, I didn’t make time to enjoy the sights and culture in the evenings.

The Ugly

  • My work/life balance was non-existent.

Goals for 2018

Improve Work/Life Balance

I definitely will be trying to make some changes in my work/life balance for 2018.  Shifting more towards the “work to live” rather than “live to work” mentality.  My customers will still get their money’s worth but I’ll be making time for my expanding family because come May I’ll be run ragged by two kids under 3!

Keep Studying/Learning

Will my certification train slow down? probably a little bit, but I still want to continue with my VMware, AWS, Azure and Windows study to keep up those certifications.

Attend my 3rd VMworld…

I’m hoping to make it 3/3 for VMworld in Barcelona this year, but it is unlikely work are going to fund two years in a row.  So this will be a self-funded trip.  As it is in November, I do have plenty of time to explain the benefits of a city break for the family 😉 !

Present at more VMUGs

I’d like to present at, at least, one VMUG in 2018.  I had plenty of ideas before Christmas, now I need to get back into the mindset and work on those presentations!

Submit a VCDX design (probably not)

I would have liked to maybe submit a VCDX design this year, but i just can’t justify the cost.  Some may say i’m short sighted but it is not about not wanting to invest in myself, its that I’d rather put food on the table for my family.

Final Thoughts…

2017 was a good year that ended badly.  I will hopefully make 2018 can only get better.  Let’s get this party started.

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