The first two weeks of the year are over, and I still need to spend some time speculating on my goals for 2024. As always, I split my goals into personal & professional. I’ll start with the personal goals again.
In the last few months, I’ve flipped through my phone while watching TV with my wife. She might be feeding the little one, but I sometimes zone out so severely that I’m missing events in the stories we’re watching. The little one isn’t really “doing much,” and it is no surprise, but I need to be more attentive to what’s happening at home. I don’t want to be caught off-guard and regret not being present. I don’t know when this started, but I must stop it now. Beyond just interacting less with a dumb rectangle in my hand, I’m on the other side of 30 now, and the birth of my son has awakened a fear in me that I won’t be able to enjoy time with him if I keep letting my health deteriorate. I am purely thinking about the impact I want to have in the long term.
- Get Active!
- Spend more time with my family
- Pay attention to what’s happening around me
I’ll say one thing: exercise is one of the most boring things. I spend more time than I’d like out of the house when the exercise is not dull. I don’t know how to tackle this, but something needs to budge. I felt a lot better when I was climbing three times a week, but it also meant spending 3 hours away from home per session. I’ve tried picking up squash, but it has the same problem. I fear the only thing that will motivate me enough will be when the fear of being unable outweighs the mind-numbing boredom of doing exercises at home.
The first few weeks of our Graduate Boot Camp have already had me a lot more busy than expected. I should’ve expected it, but I underestimated how easily I can get sucked into Boot Camp. I let it pull me away from my family for an evening, and my wife had put my son to bed before I got home. The remorse I felt when I realised I hadn’t seen him awake for the day was unlike anything I’d experienced. I love the work I do, and I know there is a “good” balance to strike here. My main focus is to ensure that even if I spend only a tiny amount of time with my family during the day, it must be QUALITY time.
It also means I need not to get so sucked into stuff at home that isn’t anything related to my family. Historically, I’ve seen that I can hyper-focus on the weirdest things, and I’d rather hyper-focus on spending time with my wife & son. I’m a night owl, and I’ve learned that I can use the time after my wife & son have gone to sleep as a bit of time for myself. Striking the right balance here and not allowing myself to become impatient in the evenings so I can go “do my own thing” is the aim. The little guy will go through so many awesome developments this year, and I don’t want to feel that amount of remorse again.
I’ve had quite the ride since I picked up sim racing as a hobby in May 2020. I’ve been keeping up as an active admin for Sim Race South Africa, and with how everything is currently running, I can continue contributing for a while longer. I’ve gotten a P2 finish in the GT3 championship with SRSA, but weekly league racing is overstretching me. The 2024.1 season has kicked off, and thus far, I’m planning on only signing up for the Caterham Superlight series. The intention is purely to have some fun, and I hope I don’t get frustrated with Automobilista 2 as I had before. That said, there are some worlds that I still want to conquer.
- iRacing Special Events
- Daytona 24 Hour
- Nurburgring 24
- Indianapolis 500
- Oval Racing
- Read “Ultimate Speed Secrets” by Ross Bentley
- Write more about my sim racing experience
There are some lofty goals here. Doing a 24-hour endurance race is a labour of love. I’ve already driven a lot in preparation for the Daytona 24-Hour event this weekend. Still, I also spent a lot of time designing a livery and formulating a strategy for our team to follow. It’s like something has finally clicked, and while it is a huge commitment, it is one where loving the journey is as much as enjoying the destination. I’ll follow up the Daytona 24 Hour with the Nurburgring 24, a race my team also completed last year. We’re bringing one of our “rookie” drivers, and I’m excited to go on the journey with him.
I also started doing some oval races at night, which I’ve enjoyed very much. iRacing has also managed to secure a license for IndyCar, which means they can host the Indy500 special event this year! The only downside is needing to buy some expensive content on the platform, which isn’t something I had been planning on doing in the next six months. I’ll see how everything pans out, but I look forward to this event!
Loot delivered my copy of “Ultimate Speed Secrets” by Ross Bentley. I ordered this week. I don’t have the ambition to be an alien in the sim racing world, but I enjoy that feeling of improvement and growth. A few chapters in the book focus on the mental game of racing. I’ve read one or two of these chapters in a sample, and there might be some general advice about having a competitive mindset.
I also have previously stated I want to “write more”, but this year, I want to write more about topics that are sim racing adjacent. Some of the topics I have in mind nicely frame some experiences I’ve had, but they will provide an insight into my world of software.
I don’t have much to report here. I have some ideas I need to document in a prototype document, but I’m less interested in game development these days. I’m still very interested in the technical topics, but sitting down and designing/developing anything in recent months has been a frustrating experience. I’m not planning on any specific goals for Game Dev in 2024.
I picked up a camera in 2022 and started doing some motorsport photography, but it was limited to races happening at Zwartkops only. I enjoy the hobby, but I’m also finding it extremely frustrating. Like most things, I’m just not taking enough pictures to learn much value.
- Take one photo a month
- Attend one race day at Zwartkops
I’m going to focus on spending time with my camera. I’ve started writing down some ideas for the types of photography I’d like to try out. I aim to take enough photos to pick one “good” photo each month and write a short paragraph or two about it.
I want to spend more time refining my motorsport photography. I primarily focus on capturing on-track action, but I need to include the cool moments in the pits between the races that help tell the story of my friends and their racing. I aim to improve my technical skills and knowledge, learning more about exposure, sharpness & composition. I aim to get better results straight out of my camera instead of spending ages editing pictures afterwards.
I mentioned in my closing post for 2023 that my role has changed. I spend most of my time working with a wide variety of people who are either developing new training content for us, presenting content or helping to coach others to be more comfortable as public speakers. It has been satisfying work, and while I have derived a lot of joy from it, I have yet to find a way to quantify the impact of my work consistently. It’s a theme I’ve picked up on since I’ve picked up since I’ve been focusing my efforts more towards being a force multiplier. I’ve fallen into the trap of feeling demotivated because I didn’t understand how to measure my impact, but I’ve been doing this enough now to know how to approach the problem.
- Define better “measures of success”
- Don’t just be a “fixer and a doer”
- Consistently drive new initiatives to success
The first goal is simple. I’m working in a space where I’m contributing towards impacting how fulfilled people in the business can feel. It’s a lot of pressure, and you can easily get caught up in the negative side of understanding how to broaden the Learning & Development offering to support our people’s needs sufficiently. Measuring success can stimulate that feeling of achievement to ensure that I keep working sustainably.
I’ve mentioned in my last post that I found myself fulfilling the role of a “fixer and a doer”. My lead would point me in the general direction of a problem with a vague solution idea, and I’d execute it. While this is useful, the intent isn’t for me to be contributing in this way indefinitely. There’s a strategic/tactical element that I can bring to the table, and I’ve had excellent discussions with my lead while we are strategising to understand the impact we want to make with a specific training initiative. He’s slowly left more and more scope up to me for problems that come up, sometimes even wholly omitting a vague solution for me to go and implement and instead trusting me to figure it out and execute. It also has meant that I had to realise I need to catch up in execution details consistently. I’ve learned that we have some fantastic people at Entelect, and I should trust them to execute the details, allowing me to focus on the holistic end goal as a process facilitator.
It leads nicely to wanting to drive new initiatives to success consistently. I’ll need to flex my creativity, and I’ll need to follow through as a facilitator to ensure an initiative is a long-term success.
2024 is going to be a big year for me. I want to enjoy as much of it as possible, and these goals will help me steer the ship correctly.