My Review of 2018: The Good, The Bad and The Struggle

My Review of 2018: The Good, The Bad and The Struggle

I always wanted to start a Yearly Review series, so this is the first one!

2018 has been a crazy year and it has brought me lots of surprises and unexpected success! Of course, failure was also part of this past year. I am going to keep it short and list my main accomplishments and discoveries during that year.


I signed up for a personal development course, created by one of my favorite Medium authors- Benjamin Hardy. It's called 52 Weeks of Momentum (later renamed to AMP). This course completely changed my life, I kid you not. You can read my review of the AMP program here.

Earlier that month, I took a few days to completely organize my computer and files. Then, I created a system for it. It looked  like this:


Then, I canceled various tools & software subscriptions I don’t use, in order to make more time and concentrate on what’s really important.

Decided that my biggest goal for Q1 is improving my income, after which I signed up for an income challenge. Basically trying to do everything you can every day for 90 days in order to achieve your goal. This technique worked miracles. It seemed I didn't have to do that much.

Towards the end of January, I signed a 5-month contract with a new design client.

Also, I wrote 5 newsletters every UX/UI designer should be subscribed to.


Sadly didn’t have the time to finish anything business-related I was planning to do this month, due to lack of time. This was the first month I was working full time for a client (5 days a week), which was very hard for me. Having to work for 8 hrs/day and still being productive and finding time for y our other projects was a real challenge!

At least, I got to travel for work and visit this amazing office in Warsaw 😍


Totally lost focus, didn’t write any blog posts as my design client was #1 priority that month. I managed to get 500 new Instagram followers though!


Successfully hired a new VA to outsource all of my social media activities for Lipstick and Pixels and free up to 10 hours for me to concentrate on content creation! Yay!

Managed to write 2 blog articles for the Lipstick and Pixels' Blog:

Pros and Cons of DIY Logo Design with Canva

How to choose the right brand colors


Set up a YouTube channel for Lipstick and Pixels (my side project where I posted tech tutorials for female entrepreneurs)

After hours of research, I finally forced myself to shoot 2 videos and upload them to the new channel. Got 9 subscribers, but gave up pretty fast due to lack of time...or priority.


Set up a YouTube channel for  (where I never uploaded any videos 🙄)

I made a list and re-evaluated my yearly goals, after which I decided to visualize everything in a Vision Board.

Wrote  How to Set Up Remote User Testing with Maze.


In July, I was working remotely from Varna. Not sure being that close to the beach is motivating, but I managed to finally clarify my brand strategy and vision for my personal brand- This was largely due to the fact that I hired a business coach! I highly recommend Tanya if you are looking for one yourself!

Streamlined my social media strategy and decided that Instagram and Facebook are the channels I want to concentrate on.

I learned how to use Timeline by Anima in order to produce high-quality animations for my prototypes. My Clients were impressed! And so was I ( unfortunately, I can't upload the designs due to the NDA I signed 😔 )

Created a content calendar for (sadly, only for a month ahead) ugh. The struggle I have with content planning.


This was my month off. I took several weeks to re-wind, rethink my goals and just do NOTHING. Oh. Except for trying to launch a branding course 😂...because I was trying to reach my goals fast. If you are curious, you can see Biz Branding Express here.

Needless to say, I failed. Lesson learned: launching a course takes more than 2 weeks.


Summer was over and I was back in Berlin and in meetings, doing home office due to our office relocation.

Business-wise this was my GDPR month. I GDPR-ed everything- my newsletter, my homepage, my opt-in forms. Basically, you can call this month the GDPR month. Period.

Somehow I managed to produce 3 IGTV videos. Created my IGTV channel and decided that Instagram will be my main focus.

I even hired a coach to help me improve faster. You don't want to see all those weird faces I was making while trying to produce a video.

Last but not least, I published 3 blog posts ( my record for the year!):

6 tips on how to negotiate a freelance rate with a low-budget client.

UX in Scrum: How do we fit design into the Scrum process?

How to design a Facebook cover that converts!


During October I realized I can't have it all- so I decided to stop working on Lipstick and Pixels and start building This meant no more tutorials, no more VAs and no more time spent in my private Facebook group (which I closed).

Set up an additional Instagram account for design inspiration!

Purchased a Lifetime subscription to Billy Gene's Gene Pool Membership.


I re-wrote my Instagram bio, learned how to shoot videos in low light with my new Canon camera and created 6 hashtag lists that I can use in my posts.

Wrote  7 UX rules for creating high-converting sales pages

Finally got the 3 room apartment! (yearly goal)

Re-watched Alex Tooby’s Instagram course and edited my hashtag list again.

Completed an entire website redesign for Children Of Bulgaria over 1 weekend. It took me around 14 hours.


Enrolled in Ready Set Gram. Sue has some great tips and tricks when it comes to building your biz on Instagram. I watched all the videos and applied most of the knowledge.

My design client offered me a contract extension.

We moved into the new apartment! 🎉

Favorite Books I read in 2018

What about you? Are you doing a yearly review? If so, does it help you to improve and strategize about the new year? Let me know in the comments below :)

xoxo Iglika

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