Where Has The Year Gone? Goals Update For 2014
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Is it just me, or is it absolutely nutty that 2014 will be coming to a close in a little more than two months? With all the traveling we’ve done the past few months it feels that 2014 has evaporated before our eyes.
Putting actual goals here on the site is something new for me but I’m glad I did it. Making the goals public motivates me even more to achieve them. I’ve also learned that I work best when I have a couple of main goals I’m working towards. I’ve found that having too many leaves me a bit unfocused so I’ll likely be changing that up next year.
Overall, I’m generally happy with how this year has gone. We’ve seen business growth and are seriously plugging away at retirement savings. We’re not back at where I’d like to be in regards to retirement savings since it we didn’t have as much to put away over the past couple of years while getting the business off the ground. However, we made some significant strides this year and prospects look even better for next year.
Goals Thus Far
- Start going to bed by 10:00 p.m. during the week…I’m not going to lie about this one. It is a total fail. We had been making some strides earlier in the year getting to about 10:45-11:00 but are back to our old ways of 11:30 or so. It’s a cycle that I want to break but it’s just not happening. Maybe it’s just the stage of life we’re in right now, but the needle has not moved in this area.
- Stop snacking once the kids go to bed. This is continuing to be a big win for us. We made some lifestyle changes at the beginning of the year and they’ve stuck and seemingly for good. I’m actually down a little over 65 pounds!
- Use our exercise bike 3-4 times per week. This one continues to be a pass. I’ve added in some circuit training as well as walking to the mix to give myself some variety. I’m exercising roughly five times per week, if not more, so I’m pretty happy with that.
- Add one more blog management client. As I said last quarter, I’ve scrapped this altogether. I just don’t have the time for it right now and am keeping fairly busy with freelance writing. Speaking of which, I’ll give my shameless plug so contact me if you have any writing needs. 🙂
- Buy another PF blog. This one is a pass. I bought Wise Dollar earlier in the year and run Sprout Wealth with Grayson. I don’t see myself buying another one in the near future, though I do have a few other ideas for additional income streams going in my mind right now that I’d like to launch in the near future.
- Getting back to being serious about saving for retirement. This area continues to go well. We’ve been able to hit my goal for what I want in our SEP IRAs at Scottrade. We also maxed out our Roth IRAs earlier in the year so we’ve been able to put a decent chunk away for retirement. We’re also near maxing out our HSA and then will likely start saving for our Roth contributions for 2015 so we can hit the ground running in January.
- Start actively saving for a new- to-us car each month. I’ll give this a borderline pass. We’re putting away at least $300 each month now for a “new” car. I’m happy with that but the crazy thing about kids is they grow – shocker I know. It’s becoming obvious we’re going to need a larger car sooner rather than later. My goal is to be able to buy the car in cash so we’re going to need to ramp up the savings big time to hit that goal. We’re effectively a one car family right now but I’d rather not be in the long term.
- Reach a better balance at home between our work time and our family time. I’d be lying if I were to rate this a pass. This continues to be a struggle for us, especially where I’m concerned. I said I was going to start scheduling it last quarter and failed on that so I need to get back to the basics in this area.
- Take the kids to Disney for free before the end of the year. This goal has been scrapped as well. My Mom and Stepdad are taking the family on a Disney cruise over Christmas and we wanted to take the kids to Disney World through churning. This just wasn’t practical on many levels. Mainly, Disney is just beyond crazy expensive and that’s during non-peak times. Around the Holidays is just over the top. I know I could get all the travel rewards cards I wanted but it would still be a challenge to swing for free. That’s also not to mention that a week on a Disney ship will drive me over the edge anyway. 😉 We’re going for a short trip to Chicago later this week and that’ll more than suffice when combined with the trip at Christmas.
Now that we’re nearly a full ten months in on the year I’m happy with how saving for retirement has gone as well as my health goals. The other ones, especially with regard to balance, not so much. I think I’ve learned over the course of this past year that I really need to work on narrowing down my goals to a solid 2-3 that I can put my focus on as opposed to a longer list. That’s not to say that I won’t find other things to work on, but I’m going to focus on being highly effective at achieving fewer goals.
How are your goals going so far this year? Do you tend to like to have a short or long list of goals? Is there anything specific you’re working on reaching by the end of the year?
Photo courtesy of: Simon Claassen
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