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End of year update

So this is Christmas
And what have you done
Another year over
And a new one just begun
Ans so this is Christmas
I hope you have fun
The near and the dear one
The old and the young
A very merry Christmas
And a happy New Year
Let's hope it's a good one
Without any fear

Another year over… What an interesting year it's been.

It's been a year of some amazing growth inside of me, growing up in many ways. Learning how to care less and achieve more. Want less and gain more. It's been a year of letting go and just letting life be as it wants to be.

As a year of achievement, it's been fun and rewarding. However, the REAL fun and rewards are yet to come.

I finished work for the year on Wednesday Dec 23rd, and will be going back to work on January 10th 2005. A nice holiday. Let's talk about holidays for a moment.

Ever since coming to New Zealand in June 2000 I've had holidays coming out of my ears. Holiday around the Sth Island in August 2000. Holiday back to Australia in October 2000. Holiday to England for Christmas 2000 and New Year 2000/2001. Holiday to Australia again in March 2001, and again in December 2001. Then I didn't have any holidays until March 2004, when I went around the North Island with my friend Mel. By this time, I had about 25 (business) days annual leave saved up, and I took 15 of them for my March holiday (giving me a nice 3-week holiday).

The reason I hadn't gone on holiday was because I worked during the xmas/new year period, doing normal and after hours shifts. My finances weren't in the most positive state, so working to make extra money was better than going on more holidays.

However, with Mel coming over this year, I saved up for that holiday (and still spent more than I planned Sad ) and had a good time again. I was going to work during this xmas and new year break again as well though, entirely by habit now. But in October I decided I didn't want to. I wasn't on the helpdesk any more, and I wasn't in the need of more money that I used to be, and I was in the mood for having a rest.

So this holiday is a holiday from holidays. Instead of travelling or working, I'm just going to be a bum for 2.5 weeks. I'm going to sit around and play computer games, and have coffees with my friends and laugh as they have to rush back to work, or go for walks in the botanical gardens on sunny days, like I did today. I'm not travelling and have no plans of travelling. I originally thought that I might like to go to Hawkes Bay for a couple days, because I liked it so much when I was there in March on the 'round the North Island trip', but now that I've got into the mood of relaxing, I really can't be bothered going for the 5-hour drive to get there, to come back the next day or so.

So call me 'bum', I am. Cheesy

Now, back the 'end of year update'.

From July 2000 through to June 2004, I was a helpdesk analyst. It was an easy, comfortable job that wasn't too challenging or demanding. It allowed me to relax at my work and earn a reasonably high income (about 50% above the national average). I had no goals or aspirations beyond this, apart from a couple of times where I almost started studying for something better, but gave up those ideas when I found that studying would cost me money and time, and give me a job that I didn't want. So I cancelled those ideas.

Then a job came along that I applied for – software trainer for a new Microsoft product. I got the job and started in June 2004, learnt the new product then developed a training program for the entire company for it. The results were applauded by my managers, giving them a training program much, much better than anything they were expecting. I was happy. I had been challenged and came through on top.

But then, by around October/November, I saw that it was a job that was going nowhere. I did myself out of a job, so to speak. By making the training so efficient and effective, it meant that they didn't need to send me around the country to train everyone. It meant they didn't need to have me supporting it as much as they thought.

So they were trying to find something for me to do, and not doing a very good job at it. I had been replaced on the helpdesk, as it was expected I would move forward into a different area. However, the manager of that different area changed his mind, so I was in limbo. I had to do something.

An opportunity arose, and I took it. They needed someone to bring a new client onboard, and travel to the South Island and visit the client and gather all the appropriate information, blah blah blah. I did that. While I was there, I was informed of one of the current clients having some relationship problems with us that needed resolving. I didn't get the opportunity to do so at the time, but it gave me an idea. This client was one of a few who didn't have any managers looking after them, so I created a new role – Client Relationship Manager. I took it to my managers and said that they need this role, and I'm the one to do it. They agreed.


So the past couple of months have been spent by me on waiting for that to officially be approved, financed, finalised, planned, detailed, talked about, and signed.

I finished work this year on Wednesday Dec 22nd. I had a final meeting with my manager on the Tuesday 21st about the role, 'demanding' some closure on the 'limbo' I was in about it. Eg. it hadn't been finalised and approved, etc. My manager assured me it's going ahead, and when I come back to work on the 10th January, we're going to start talking about my new wages and conditions, with a new contract being signed. As proof of his seriousness, as far as I'm concerned at least, he signed off on approval for a kick-arse laptop of my choice to work with, as part of my job entails travelling around the country every 6 or so weeks. I talked him into making it the laptop of my choice because I'm wanting to upgrade my personal laptop.

Wheeee!! I'm a happy chappy indeed. Who knows what kind of employment-related goodness is going to occur in 2005, but damn! I'm looking forward to it.

What's most exciting about this is that I reached out and asked for it, and they gave me what I wanted. At every point this past year I have gotten what I asked for.

I think there's a lesson in that for everyone, but you have to make sure that you have set the groundwork before you ask for something. They have to believe that you are worth giving what you are asking for before they'll do it. Not only do you have to have achieved their expectations and more with the setting up of the groundwork, you have to be persistent and determined. Remind them about what you've done, and what you're capable of doing. Point out to them that giving you what you want is going to be an asset to the company. Wink

So that's the career update, with oh so many more to come in 2005, I'm sure. Onto the relationships….

2004 has been the year of Asian Addicts Anonymous. Well, I'm not that anonymous… but still. I discovered that my interest in asian women and culture has made me decide that I want to be with an asian woman. I believe this is highly related to my longstanding anguish about losing Wakana, and my desire to 'find her in someone else'. It remains to be seen if I will, but I'm happy continuing the path I'm on at the moment.

Yes, the path weaves its way through the hills and rocky passes, sometimes branching into multiple paths, with each path leading to a destination unknown. Which one do I take? What will I experience on this path or that? What's over the hill, or around the corner?

I don't know, but I'm happy you are joining me as I walk my path, wherever it takes me.

A toast to 2004 making us all one year stronger, and a toast to 2005 – may at least some of your dreams come true this year. Be happy.

Love to you all.

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