Writings by Tom de Bruin (@deadlyhifi), a software engineer who cares about all the things. more…

My 2016 Year in Review

2016 has been dire: Brexit, Snoopers charter, Donald Trump, I despair – but personally it has been a triumph. At the beginning of this year I set myself a challenge – to move up. Well, actually the challenge started about 3 years ago. The challenge then was to catch up ten years of career development; the 10 years that I had dealt with cancer.

2017 will mark 10 years since my stem cell transplant. And in preparation for that I wanted to be happy with my career development. I can now safely say I’ve achieved my goal (I have new goals, but that’s another story).

At the start of 2016 I was working in a web agency. A wonderful 2 year experience but I’d started to pick holes in it and I felt I had met a ceiling in terms of personal and professional development. To continue the journey I had to once again get out of my comfort zone and face the next challenge.

Sky Betting and Gaming was recruiting and I thought I’d give it a go. More than half expecting to fail (imposter syndrome is strong wit this one), I made it through and in May I started work.

Around the same time I also took over the running of LeedsPHP user group through which I’ve met lots of people and faced many a challenge.

It’s been a very tough year. A year of facing my fears head on. A wake up call of how much I have to learn in terms of development practice, working in a large company, surrounded by incredibly talented individuals, constant learning… the list goes on. There have been plenty of times when I’ve felt it all too much, but I’ve taken a step back and said to myself, sometimes out loud — “this is exactly what you wanted, so deal with it!”

And I did it. So I’m giving myself a big pat on the back. It’s quite amazing what a difference a year can make. In the words of George McFly, “If you put your mind to it, you can accomplish anything.”

On to the next part of the plan.