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All my Regrets, Successes and Resolutions of 2020

2020 has been a shitshow of astronomical proportions, I think we can all agree on that. It’s been turbulent, to say the least, and in the blogging tradition, I wanna post a recap of my year.

Intoxicated Visions

After having said Goodbye to ‘Uwe’ in a Ouija session, I thought I was done with feeling followed by a ghost who gives me weird visions of the future. However, my one and only vision of 2020 came true. On January 1st (and you can ask my friend Jacqueline if you don’t believe this) I had the vision that 2020 was gonna be a horrible year all in all. And boy, was I right…

This past year feels like a marathon without a goal. Fortunately, though, the end of this year makes it feel like we can close the chapter a little bit and look into a brighter future. A future with a vaccine and the re-start of societal life.

The good things first

I started this year by taking a break from blogging and refocussing on what I wanted to do with my life, which was becoming a Freelancer. I was quite worried about this step but turns out I am actually quite good at organizing myself and making sure I have a steady income. Right now, I am a single-person advertising agency and can look back at a successful year. More than anything I am glad I found a way to make my own rules and (mostly) stay true to them. And as long as I don’t get sued by anyone I think I’ll be fine.

In February I made the dream come true and got tattoed by legendary artist Ondrash in the Czech Republic. Then, right before Corona hit, my ex-partner Chris and I were asked to join a nude performance at a huge charity drag queen ball in our home town. After a loooong run of considerations how it would feel to be naked on stage and seen by lots of people (including reporters and photographers…), we decided to go for it and had one of the most amazing and lovely evenings of our lives. We truly ended the party season of 2020 with a HUGE bang.

During the first Corona lockdown, I was kinda happy to have time to concentrate on my business and creative ventures – thinking that it would all be over soon. In this timeframe, I got to be the first German-speaking journalist to publish an interview with a Corona-positive patient. Later in the year, I gave this website the re-design I’ve craved for quite a while (how do you like it?) and spent Lockdown 2 producing a short film for myself and a music video for my friend ÄNSI. Designs of mine were featured in exhibitions in Mexico (‘To Death with a Smile’) and China (‘All Against COVID-19’). Later, I also started as a freelance teacher for design courses at a local educational institute.

Last, but certainly not least, I have thrown myself a pretty crazy birthday party this year. In the summer Austrian Corona numbers were really good but clubs had not been opened yet. Since it was my biggest wish for my birthday to just be able to dance and party again, I decided to bring my own speakers as well as my DJ equipment to our biggest park. What started as the idea to have a small party for me and my friends ended in a kinda large freetech-rave in the park. And even though this might not have been the smartest thing to do, I LOVE that I was able to give myself and all the people in the park something we had all been missing very much. Shortly after that, I visited my own private escape, Berlin, for a summer I could only have had in this city! At the end of the year, I fulfilled my dream of getting LASIK laser eye surgery. 

My small birthday gathering

The glass is half empty

Now, even though this may sound like an incredible year full of adventures (which, for some parts, it was), this year didn’t pass me by without taking a serious toll on my mental health. During the quarantine, I felt very unstable for a long time. I was bored, felt trapt, lonely and desperate. I could not deal without having an escape or a solution in sight. In this period of time, I took some of my frustration out on the only person I did have contact with, my former partner. The irony!

When I felt I had reached the peak of pointlessness was when we realized that we couldn’t move forward together. Even though there is nothing we could have done differently and nothing I could do now, it is my biggest regret of this year to have treated the kindest and most humble person I have ever met in my life in a way that didn’t do him justice.

After saying goodbye to my ex-partner I did not take the time to properly process what had happened. You could call it fate (or the universe testing me) but I did fall for someone I did not plan on having feelings for right after. I knew that this wasn’t smart, he knew it too, but we decided to just say YES to everything and not think about it. And when the sun is up and it’s a warm day, it sure does feel good to just go with the flow. The consequences, however, will always catch up with you.

Not long after, he got the message that he had to go back to his home university to finish his studies. This was all going to end and it was gonna end soon and leave everyone involved with pain that could’ve been avoided. Moreover, I came to find out later that while it might be fun playing around with some 20-year-old, I was getting played too. Guess, there’s always a first time for getting burned. Now, I try to see all the messed up things I was confronted with as some kind of karmic revenge and a lesson that you shouldn’t trust anyone too quickly. In the end, however, the good things only happen when you risk the bad things to happen too, and this year proved that all too well.

New Year Resolutions

I am not going to have a deeper look at last year’s resolutions because due to Corona it was not possible to do a lot of the things I had set out to do. I do wanna make a list for next year though. In my personal blogging tradition, I’ll forget about this list for the rest of the year until it’s time to have a look back at 2021. Let’s hope it’s gonna be a good one.

  1. Keep my Freelance advertising agency going and expand my reach.
  2. Start charity work, ideally street work, once a week or every other week.
  3. Finish the first draft of the book I’ve been working on for way too long now.
  4. Start my next decade in Japan with some of my best friends. (dreaming big)
  5. Stop depending on others for my personal happiness.
  6. Put in at least a little effort to do sports.
  7. Just don’t give a fuck and be happy.

What are your resolutions for next year? Do you think it’s gonna be a better one than 2020?

 

BenLeander

 

 

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Compulsive nonconformist who left the 9-to-5 world after studying psychology and has since then devoted himself to design and writing on a freelance basis. Has at least four different kinds of chips at home at any given time.

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