For the past couple of years, basically since I moved to Estonia, I’ve prayed to the New Year gods to make the next one a lot better than the ending year had been. So far, my prayers have not been answered and another troublesome year draws to a thankful end.
Okay, slight exaggeration there, perhaps, but this year there have been more unfortunate events and occurrences than there have been feelings of happiness and/or success. Thankfully there have still been happy and successful days as well.
Here’s a little recap of the most prominent highs and lows of my year 2018:
Let’s start with the Lows, because then we can end with a high, right?
Honestly, this year might have been a brilliant one, if my new job hadn’t turned out to be the nightmare that it was. It has affected my mental, as well as physical health throughout the year, in the most negative ways possible.
All major low points this year have been in relation to my job. The list of things that have made my year professionally very hard consists of issues caused by incompetent leadership, and includes
- complete lack of any team spirit or feeling of community, resulting at its worst into damaging frictions between colleagues, caused and stirred by the manager
- complete lack of motivation or feeling that our work, or we as employees, were appreciated
- problems with salary
- all problems escalating into most of the team resigning one by one, which meant losing those little specks of light I had at the office.
These are all extremely serious issues that can be found in offices all around the world. These problems were, in our case, taken seriously and handled too late, which meant serious mental health issues to many of us, and too many of our wonderful team members abandoning the ship.
Thankfully, at the end of the year some light appeared on the horizon!
New manager and colleagues
Oh yes, in October we finally got a new team leader and oh boy, didn’t he make an enormous difference! You’re all aware of Dementors from the Harry Potter books, right? That is exactly what our former manager was like; the moment he entered the building depression descended and talk and smiles were forbidden.
So, before ‘the Dementor’ had even properly left the building, and the new guy taken up the reigns, we team members were already starting to pick up the game, that had been denied from us since then. The disputes, that had been ongoing for over 6 months, were resolved and the overall mood in the team saw an extreme ascend within just one week.
With the new, professional Team Lead we’ve also seen multiple new additions to our team. And it’s been brilliant! Funny people, loud people, just the kind of people we needed to bring that extra kick of life into our team.
My mental health has been on the rise since October. And even though the horrid winter weather causes me headache I’m able to cope so much better because it’s finally nice to go to work.
Traveling to my heart’s content
I love to travel and thankfully this year I’ve been able to travel a lot more than in the previous 2 years put together!
Only couple weeks after returning from Croatia it was time to take the bus to Riga, Latvia to spend the Midsummer with Monika. We met some truly special people on that trip, had a lot of good food and did plenty of walking to lose the calories.
There’s one trip I make every single year: I have to go to Bratislava, Slovakia to see my best friend, old hoods and the best colleagues I have ever had. That trip usually also includes either Vienna, Austria or Budapest, Hungary. This year we spent couple days in Vienna before embarking on our mountain trip in Slovakia.
And oh my lord, is there anything more awesome than ending my year in Maui, Hawaii?! I’ve never traveled outside of Europe so this is a first in so many ways for me, and from what I’ve heard from my travel companions, this is going to be a once in a lifetime experience. Assuming that I get through the border controls first!
Launching Outlandish Blog
Oh yes, this baby saw daylight in March 2018! I’ve been blogging for almost 10 years but it’s just been a hobby and a way of keeping family and friends updated on my adventures all over Europe. But now that my new job didn’t provide me with anything except nightmares, I needed a creative escape.
So, I purchased my own domain, learned a little bit (or a bit more) of coding and SEO, and submerged myself into the blogosphere. This blog has been such a huge cheer-up for me especially because it has grown faster than I ever dared to dream.
I thought there was no way for me to make any money out of this project before next year or the year after that. But it seems that hard work really pays off! And it’s not even hard work when it’s something that you absolutely love doing, and which provides you with inspiration and learning experiences weekly.
Even if I didn’t get any money out of this project, I would still keep on going because this is my ultimate happiness-project.
I hope you have enjoyed the ride with me as well, and here’s my opportunity to thank every single one of you lovelies reading this blog and leaving comments! Every single comment means so much to me; you guys make even the darkest day much brighter to me so THANK YOU! ♥
I’d love to hear what have been your biggest highs (or lows) this year! xx