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Zahid Karakaya · Updated 03 July 2022

A Year In Review [2022]

What a year it’s been! I like to think about how my year went, what worked, and how it would be different in the future. 

“You can't connect the dots looking forward; you can only connect them looking backward.”

- Steve Jobs

Highlights

Below are the highlights of the year:

  • Joined Vigo Health!
  • Not yet a millionaire
  • Had new experiences
  • Achieved a lot and failed a lot

Books of the Year:

  • How Google Works - Eric Schmidt
  • Good Habits, Bad Habits - Macmillan
  • That Will Never Work - Marc Randolph
  • Courage to be Disliked -  Ichiro Kishimi, Fumitake Koga
  • Steal Like an Artist - Austin Kleon
  • This is Marketing - Seth Godin

Skills of the Year:

What I’ve Learned

Fulfillment

When you are fulfilled, you feel like you’ve done everything that you could do. You know that you’re contributing to your community, and you’re proud of yourself for making positive changes in your life. Fulfillment doesn’t mean that you have become to be rich or famous; it just means that you’ve achieved something meaningful in your life. Filling your life with purposeful activities and relationships makes you feel fulfilled. 

I’m not saying everything must be perfect, in fact, we constantly have to navigate anxiety, doubt, and mismatched expectations in our lives.

We are all searching for our purpose and we are all looking for ways to better ourselves.

Happiness

First of all, you need to understand that happiness is subjective. There isn’t anything that anyone else can say that will make you feel happier than you already do. Second, you need to realize that happiness comes from within. If you focus on external factors, you will only get temporary satisfaction. Finally, you need to learn how to appreciate the little things in life. Appreciating the small things in life will help you to enjoy the big ones even more.

Friends, Colleagues, and People

In your life, you are going to meet people who will change your life forever. Some are there for years, a few for a lifetime, and many for what seems like just a flash. I’ve never been happier than the moment I met you guys. The time we have been together has flown by and I wouldn’t change a thing. 

Now each of us moving to different countries, cities, and locations and still connected to each other. Almost every time we are together I feel like I'm inside of an episode of friends.

Consistency

Small continuous effort over time amounts to a lot. I find it much easier to do something small every day than to make herculean efforts once a month. I don’t train like an athlete but I do something every day, even if it’s only a few jump ropes and push-ups. I don’t get out of shape because I don’t have long periods of inactivity.

Work-Life

Creating, breaking, and learning about code probably takes 3/4 of my awake time. I came to this industry out of the desire to create and I wanted to spend most of my time doing that. 

I joined Vigo Health! I'm working on PWA (Progressive Web App) to make Vigo accessible on every platform.

I would say last year was an eye-opener and a stepping stone for me toward the endless opportunities life has to offer.

Vigo Health

You will know when you have found the right people to serve when you realize that giving in their presence is easy and reciprocated. That's what happened to me when I met with the Vigo Health team. 

What is Vigo?

Vigo is a digital therapy program for stroke survivors. It is available to anyone with an Apple iPad tablet in the comfort of their own home and is suitable for users with no technological knowledge.

Since founding the start-up in 2018, Vigo has evolved from an idea to an app obtaining CE marking accessible to patients. It has been developed collaboratively with leading Latvian and international rehabilitation institutions and specialists.

And what is Stroke?  It's a bit of an odd name, stroke. The word stroke comes from the idea of receiving a 'strike' or 'blow' as that is how quickly strokes appear - all of a sudden people are struck by this illness.

What is a Stroke?

Let me explain stroke.

The brain, like all parts of the body, needs oxygen, which it gets from the blood. A stroke happens when blood flow to the brain is cut off. When brain cells are starved of oxygen, they become damaged, and the symptoms that follow are called a stroke.

The effects might be barely noticeable but are more often severe and disabling.

Sometimes these changes can be reversed if treatment is started early. That's why it is so important to act quickly if you suspect a stroke.

Remember, you need to get help 'FAST'.

F is for Face: is their face drooping on one side? Can they smile?

A is for Arms: is there a weakness in the arms? Can they lift them both up?

S is for Speech: is their speech slurred?

T is for Time: if you spot any one of these signs then it’s time to call an ambulance. Once the ambulance arrives at the hospital, a doctor will assess you and arrange an urgent scan of the head, which shows where the brain is damaged and what type of stroke has happened.

Strokes are put into two groups depending on the problem in the blood vessels supplying the brain. There can either be a blockage (called an ischaemic stroke), or a bleed (called a haemorrhagic stroke).

The effects of a stroke can be disabling, but given time, the brain can slowly adapt to recover some previously lost abilities. This is why stroke rehabilitation is so important.

Wrap Up

Writing my year in review helps me to celebrate my biggest wins, see what was wrong and define goals for the upcoming year. If you wondering anything about this article you can reach out to me!