New Year, Same Ol’ Spencer

New year, new me? Nahhh. You can expect the same ol’ Spencer in 2023 – but this year, I am going to be the kind of person who better measures and tracks the building my own ideal lifestyle. Since 2012, I have written down my “To do, to have, to be” goals every 6-12 months. This has helped me incredibly and has probably played a big role in getting me closer and closer to that ideal lifestyle. It has even helped to bring me across the ocean to settle in Berlin and pursue a career in esports.

So for some of the new habits I am planning to track this year…

READING. It delights me to acknowledge that, between leaving for Fuerteventura in mid-December and returning to Berlin in mid-January, I finished reading 5 entire books. Each is on a unique topic that is either something I want to learn more about or something that is slightly biopic but has clear takeaways and something I can personally relate to. I would like to begin breaking down each individual read and sharing my biggest takeaways as well. Anytime I go back through a book and review all my highlighted quotes, folded pages, and underlined text, it really helps to cement the learnings in my head, so instead of just reading these books, I will definitely plan to share these findings.

LEARNING. Although not totally disconnected from the Reading section, I would like to experiment with some new topics and tools to use when channeling random inspiration or having creativity sessions throughout the year. In the earliest stages of this, I intend to experiment with AI as an assistant to help me with a handful of initial small project ideas, such as building out a simple interactive web game.

Another major point of learning for me in 2023 will be the German language. I have been living in Berlin long enough and it’s slightly embarrassing I have not progressed at all in this department (even with a pandemic), but I kicked this off in December with an intensive language course to get some traction and will follow it up with another in the coming weeks. If you see me on the street, speak with me in German please – no matter how painful it might be, it will be a big help. xD

HEALTH. Taking better care of my health is something I am focused on this year as well. This is a multi-prong process that I have already kick-started.

  • I will get in the gym or attend/train/compete in sports 4-6 times a week.
  • I will consume less fried foods, more fruit and vegetables, and remove gluten completely from my diet. 
  • I will take extra time this year to better understand the healthcare system in Germany and my insurance costs/benefits.

SPORTS. Sports have truly been a major part of my life since I was only 5 years old and my father was teaching me and my sister how to throw, catch, and hit a baseball behind the elementary school in New Baltimore, Michigan. Those days might actually be some of my earliest firm memories. So for this year, I intend to share much more about what I am playing, where I am playing, the people I meet, and the stories of the adventures that are bound to occur throughout the year. I could imagine a few narratives which might play out, but at the very least I would like to write about:

  • Gaelic football, what it means to me, and where it’s taken me around the world. 
  • My return to playing baseball for the first time in literally 20 years. (Lets see how this goes xD)
  • The Startup League
  • Casually playing Australian Rules Football
  • Spencer carefully tries to avoid injury while skateboarding

LIFE & LOVE. There is a lot going on in this department, much of it private, but I am keen to share a bit more about the decisions I have made to get me to where I am today, the friends who have stepped into my life since moving to Germany almost 4 years ago, and the beautiful life I am building with my incredible partner (yes, I now have a +1 for all the important events in life).

I don’t think this is a proposal for a new me in 2023, however, it’s a version of myself that I am more proud to take ownership of and identify as. Thanks for reading and let’s see how it goes.