Category Archives: Goals

Goals Recap 2016

Another year bites the dust. 2016 was a year of change. Halfway through the year we packed up our belongings and moved cross country to the Midwest. I have been at my job for 6 months and my husband is in transition. My husband is taking more time off than expected (extended vacation), but spending has remained in check. It helps we are low spenders in general. Here is a recap of 2016’s goals.

1.       401K – Complete

2.       Hubby’s IRA – Complete.

3.       My IRA – Complete

4.       Invest in brokerage account – Not Complete

5.       Increase Liquid Cash – Working on it.

6.       Continue ESPP contribution – No longer relevant since I switched jobs.

In 2016 I decided to simplify my goal list and focus on financial goals. It’s probably a good thing because my exercise regime has fallen off the map due to the new job and my lack of motivation to start a good routine. I want 2017 to be different on the personal side. There are a few notable items on my personal side that are influencing my goals for next year.

A)      I have been so exhausted. I am more tired than usual. The exhaustion runs deep. I don’t even want to travel anymore. Staycation anyone? I even wrote about feeling the burn out at work. I don’t even know what to blame at this point. It’s a combination of many factors – corporate work/life balance (does that exist?), a decrease in fitness and healthy foods, not enough sun (I sit in a cubicle all day). Whatever it is I need to figure it out.

B)        I manage the financial household in our relationship. I enjoy messing around with spreadsheets, reading about personal finance, etc. It’s a fun activity for me. I soak up the knowledge. But this really needs to be a joint activity; at least in terms of review. There are times where I feel a huge burden on my shoulders, especially now since my sole income is supporting us. We moved due to my job, but there have been moments of frustration at my husband’s job search. This is what happens when you have a very goal driven person (me) and a very laid back person (him) join forces in marriage. I’m very independent and will dig through a mountain if needed. So, in part, my husband has no need to take care of me in the traditional financial sense. We are working through it. I need him to understand the numbers at a high level and how the numbers are connected to the short term goals which are connected to long term goals and then, ultimately to dreams.

Here are the goals for 2017…even more simplified.

1.       Automate Finances and Do Not Touch Automation

a.        Contribute to retirement accounts (401K, IRAs, HSA)

b.       Invest in brokerage account

2.       Health and Fitness

a.        Exercise 4-5 times a week

b.       Eat more vegetables and fruit, less carbs.

3.       Involve my husband in finances more

a.        Draft an Investment Policy Statement

Reviewing 2013 Goals

Every year I sit down, make goals, and then review them. It helps me stay on track. Yes, the review is a tad late. But it took me a bit to compile our results for 2013.

If you want to look at my 2013 goals, click on this.

It’s been a really crazy year and looking back on my goals, I realized what a long way we have come.

***Credit cards are paid off in full every month.

Financial Goals:

  1. Increase primary savings account to $20,000 Done! Although the account is down to $10K, since I funded our IRAs for 2013 in January and February.
  2. Fully fund down payment fund of $30,000 and buy a house by the of the year. Holy crap we bought a house!!! We ended up putting 20% down. Check out all my house posts. From how we were out beaten from the Peachtree house, to dozens of failed showings, to how we found the house, to loan processing and who knows what else!
  3. Increase 401K to $19,000. Actually, I ended up beating my number and getting this to nearly $30K. The markets helped here, and ended up upping my contribution halfway through the year.
  4. Increase ESPP fund to $3900 through automatic payroll deductions. We only make it to $3K. Decided to cancel my ESPP contribution and max out 401K. I’m going to look at starting my ESPP once again in the fall.
  5. Pay off car loan. We paid off this sucker!!! It felt awesome!
  6. Make $4000 side hustle income. Fail. But this year I’m going to work harder! 

My Professional Goals:

  1. Finish MBA. Yes, I finished this and received my diploma in May. No debt! I even considered starting another one, but decided to postpone the decision.
  2. Identify mentor in company. Didn’t really do this. But I just set up a relationship for mentorship in my company this month. So better late than never. I’m also being mentored by an outside executive.
  3. Join a professional organization and attend one networking event every quarter. I joined Toastmasters
  4. Revisit and maintain mentor-mentee relationships with previous mentors. Still working on this one. Have to call people. 
  5. Continue training to be a sourcing manager. Establish goals to get there. Working on this one.
  6. Get good ratings on company’s IPM. They were average. Not great because I was too new. Going to prove this year’s were awesome!

Blog Goals:

  1. Switch to self-host
  2. Redesign website
  3. Increase twitter followers to 700. I only got to 500. 
  4. Join the Yakezie challenge. Fail. 
  5. Write post 3x/wk. Barely Pass. I wrote less at the end of the year when we were dealing with all the house stuff and work got end of the year crazy!

Life Goals:

  1. Workout 5x a week
  2. Lose 10 pounds. Maintain weight at 110 lbs. (Currently at 120-122). I’m at a healthy weight.
  3. Read 1 book every three months.
  4. Have fun with friends and hubby
  5. Visit family

Overall, the year went by so fast. I can’t believe we accomplished all of those goals. Our net worth tripled. We ended up almost $10,000 above our end of 2013 net worth goal.

Screen Shot 2014-02-18 at 10.36.35 PM

How Do You Focus?

This post is mostly going to be about my lack of focus right now. So, if you want to learn how NOT to focus, please read on :)

I have so many ideas!!! This is not unusual for me, as I am person with a very active imagination. I dream, dream, and dream while I do my practical chores of the day.

My husband and I often share ideas of what we want. Well, actually it’s usually me blabbing and him listening. I share my aspirations and what I want to do. It’s great. He’s a very good listener, and doesn’t pressure me to do anything. While I’m fast and furious, he’s more relaxed. Takes things slower. But I can’t help if my brain operates 24/7!

My challenge right is now focus and implementation.Here is some insight into my very confused, scattered, and excited mind.

I WANT TO:

Start a legal business entity ( Now we are not quitting our day jobs). But I think it’s wise if we want to start exploring options for side ventures.

  • Need to file paperwork in Texas. Cost $300
  • This is a short term goal. I can easily get this paperwork finished this month.

Start a couple more websites:

  • Create a basic professional website for the “real” me. This will establish an online presence for my career. (“Real” means the non-anonymous SFL me).
  • Create a blog geared towards business strategy. I read so much about business strategy, company’s future, etc., the site would be a great forum to share my voice. Plus, it would give the “real” me an online presence.
  • Create a niche finance/life choices blog (more details to come).
  • Help my husband launch his blog geared towards sports ( I keep saying I want to help him, but haven’t done it)
  • SHORT TERM GOAL (By end of 2013)

Buy a house and go all HGTV on it

  • Ok, maybe I’m exaggerating on how HGTV I’m going to be around my house. But I would really like to add home remodeling to my skill set. My husband and I have definitely given thought to rental home business by slowly acquiring property and fixing it up. Like Mrs. and Mr. POP. 
  • SHORT and LONG TERM GOAL

Start a new Master’s degree

  •  So I have mentioned before I want to start a new Master’s degree. I would only do about 1 class every 4 months. I’m hoping it will improve my soft skill set, and help me advance in my career. But, I do worry. What if I don’t have enough time? I have to figure out my priorities. This is my 3rd master’s degree, and I’m really in no rush to finish it. LONG TERM GOAL (Next 4 years?)
  • Toastmaster’s competent leadership and communicator certifications. So I want to get these two certifications under my belt, but they are not super high in my priority list. I’m basically doing it for fun, and to improve my communication skills and confidence. LONG TERM GOAL (Next 1 year?)

Start Investing

  • I want to learn more about investing.
  • 1st order of business – read “The Intelligent Investor.” I bought last year, but haven’t really make it past Ch 1.

So, there it is. I’m putting myself out there. I know it’s sometimes hard for me to share my dreams because it makes them more real. Somehow sharing them with people other than my husband makes me feel accountable.

How do you focus?

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2013 Goals

It’s a new year peeps!!!! Happy 2013!

I think 2013 is going to be a great year! I hope we can accomplish a lot :)

Our goals for 2013 are as follows:

Screen Shot 2012-12-30 at 2.12.26 PM

***Credit cards are paid off in full every month.

Financial Goals:

  1. Increase primary savings account to $20,000
  2. Fully fund down payment fund of $30,000 and buy a house by the of the year
  3. Increase 401K to $19,000
  4. Increase ESPP fund to $3900 through automatic payroll deductions.
  5. Pay off car loan.
  6. Make $4000 side hustle income

My Professional Goals:

  1. Finish MBA.
  2. Identify mentor in company.
  3. Join a professional organization and attend one networking event every quarter.
  4. Revisit and maintain mentor-mentee relationships with previous mentors.
  5. Continue training to be a sourcing manager. Establish goals to get there.
  6. Get good ratings on company’s IPM.

Blog Goals:

  1. Switch to self-host
  2. Redesign website
  3. Increase twitter followers to 700.
  4. Join the Yakesie challenge.
  5. Write post 3x/wk.

Life Goals:

  1. Workout 5x a week
  2. Lose 10 pounds. Maintain weight at 110 lbs. (Currently at 120-122)
  3. Read 1 book every three months.
  4. Have fun with friends and hubby
  5. Visit family

What are your goals for 2013?

2012 Goal Reflections

Can’t believe it’s the end of 2012 already. The last six months went by so quickly, I guess that’s life. This year we both finished going to school full time and are not working full time! Hence, we are making money :) Woohoo!!!

2012 was a great year overall. We finished school for the most part. My husband graduate with his Bachelor’s. I finished my Master’s in Supply Chain management, and both started working full time. We, also, went on two vacations this year: Hilton Head, SC, and D.C! Our last vacation had been back in 2009 when we went on a road trip to Colorado.

Work has brought on a set of different challenges. After being a student full time for 22 years, switching to the 40 hour workplace is completely different. I am working with people with different skills, interests, personalities, and of course, from different generations.

I, also, started this blog this year. It has been a great outlet for me, and mostly I have treated it as a hobby.

So let’s look at my goals for 2012:

First part of 2012 goals:

  1. Finish MS with great grades. (GPA 3.7+)
  2. Get my offer letter. (I am working right now at a great company)
  3. Apply for scholarships to finish my MBA next year. ( I applied, but did not get any more)
  4. Lose ten pounds to be lean and mean for my 2nd half marathon on May 6! I have lost 6 pounds so far! (Did not run the half marathon due to conflict with finals. I did lose weight, but now I have gained it again)
  5. Start learning a 3rd language. My focus is going to be Latin America, so I need to start working on my Portuguese. (Need to work on this…)

Second part of 2012 Goals:

  1. Save $20,000 by end of the year
  2. Pay down car loan from $5238 to $3000. We paid off over $2000!
  3. Contribute to my 401K (Enrolled).  Did you see the balance???
  4. Earn $2000 side hustle   I actually did make $2000 from baby-sitting.
  5. Make A’s in fall classes    I ended up with 1 A and 1 B!
  6. Work hard at my company. I’m working hard :)
  7. Identify high level mentor in company. (Still no traction on this one)
  8. Work out 3-5x a week, lose five pounds (Most of the time I did work out a minimum of 3x a week. I did not lose any weight)
  9. Visit family (Labor Day, Dad’s November birthday, Thanksgiving, Christmas)
  10. Have fun with hubby and friends
  11. Grow blog (still working on how to do this)  I do have more followers, but I need to set more concrete goals for 2013.
  12. Start ROTH IRA for my husband ($5000) I invested $3000!

Here is a quick financial summary of our assets and liabilities:

Screen Shot 2012-12-30 at 8.32.24 PM

At the end of 2012 we ended with $16000 in our savings account, $6334 in our 401K, and almost $3000 in our ROTH IRA. My ESPP contribution is also valued at $1130. Our credit cards are paid off in full every month.

Well, that was my progress for 2012? How was your 2012???

December 2012 Goals

December is here, which means Christmas is around the corner :) and I am on vacation in DC! I am actually writing this before my vacation, so I can’t spill anything yet. You must wait for the next post!!!

So what happened in November?

November Goals:

  1. Save $2500 PASS – Actually deposited more than $2500 in savings account. I got reimbursed for my fall tuition, got paid for my vacation I cashed out, and then the regular savings from what we didn’t spend. My savings account received a big jump. I still have to pay for my class in the Spring though :/
  2. Spend less than $3000. SORTA PASS -This is a more achievable goal. –Hmm…we are doing a little better with our spending. But we did shop on Black Friday so…you know what that means. I,also, went to visit my parents twice and had my grandparents visit. So expenses added up. 
  3. Pay $400 to car loan PASS – Debt payment is on track. Can’t wait to reveal how much we have paid so far, and have left at the end of the year. I, also, can’t wait to not have to pay $400 a month for a car. 
  4. Workout 4x a week SORTA PASS – I worked out regularly with the exception of turkey week, and when my grandparents visited. 
  5. Write 3 blogs a week (Monday, Wednesday, Friday) PASS!!! Yes, I love this new schedule :)
  6. Switch to self host in November, and design new banner FAIL – This will happen in December…

Keeping up with my financial and personal goals is always in continuous improvement! I have actually decided on a slightly different format for my 2013 goals. Just a quick peek a boo…I’m thinking of breaking down my goals into financial, personal, professional, educational, health & fitness, and blog. You will have to see!

I’m already thinking of ways I can save and make more money next year:

  1. Eating out less
  2. Decreasing our electricity and water bill. This past month our electricity bill was $58, huge improvement, and water bill was $37!
  3. Finish that dang defense driving course I paid $25 for, so I can get my 10% discount…ugh I’m such a procrastinator.
  4. Develop a nice side hustle that brings in cash. Babysitting didn’t work out for me. But I would like to get more into blogging. I already blog and read blogs every day, so how can I monetize it?

Here are my goals for December:

  1. Switch to self host
  2.  Save $2500
  3. Spend less than $3000 
  4. Pay $400 to car loan
  5. Workout 4x a week
  6. Write 3 blogs a week

Did you meet your goals in November? What are your goals for December?

November 2012 Goals

October came and left! Seriously can you believe it’s already November? I sure can’t. There’s only two months left in the year, and the pressure is on to complete my goals.

October was a good month. We didn’t save as much because I ended up paying for our December vacation to DC. I, also, opened my ROTH IRA and deposited $3,000. I, also, sold a week of vacation, which will be paid in November. I will, also, be getting reimbursed for my Fall classes in November. Here are my October goals:

October Goals:

  1. Save $2500 FAIL We only saved $1000.
  2. Spend no more than $2500. FAIL. We had to pay for vacation flight and sleeping accommodations. However, I think our expenses would have been lowered if we didn’t have to pay for the vacay.
  3. Pay $400 to car loan. PASS. 
  4. Workout 4x week and lose 2 lbs. PASS. I haven’t lost weight (I eat too many cookies and ice cream), but I’m working out more and I started running. I,also, signed up for a corporate relay marathon in December! I am running the longest and last stretch (6.4 miles).
  5. Make $200 of side hustle $ PASS. I got paid for past babysitting hours. However, since I’m not going to be baby sitting anymore, I have to find a new side hustle.
  6. Sell 2 pairs of shoes on ebay FAIL.
  7. Write 3 blogs a week. FAIL. I was distracted with work, babysitting, and school. This month’s goal is to post Mon, Wed, and Fri. 
  8. Finish MIS class. PASS. I made an A!!!! :) 

October was a mixed month. We really want to keep our expenses down. However, it’s really hard to keep our food budget down. We love eating out and I hate cooking. It stresses me out! November will be a new set of challenges. I will be traveling to see my parents 2x this month, which means I will be spending more on gas. My grandparents are coming into town, so more food :). It’s Thanksgiving, which means Black Friday sales!!!

November Goals:

  1. Save $2500
  2. Spend less than $3000. -This is a more achievable goal.-
  3. Pay $400 to car loan
  4. Workout 4x a week
  5. Write 3 blogs a week (Monday, Wednesday, Friday)
  6. Switch to self host in November, and design new banner

How were your October accomplishments? What are your goals for November?

October 2012 Goals

September Goal Recap: Check out my September goals here. I really, really tried to keep up with my goals in September. Here was my progress:

  1. Save $2,500 PASS
  2. Spend no more than $2500 FAIL
  3. Pay $400 to car loan PASS
  4. Workout 4 times a week and lose 4 pounds. SEMI PASS. I did workout 4 times a week except for the last week of September. I was under pain meds due to extractions and just couldn’t make it. I lost two pounds because I couldn’t eat.
  5. Make side hustle money. PASS I babysat and made some money. Not as much as I would have liked, but considering my levels of energy lately, probably as much as I could.
  6. Sell 2 pairs of shoes on ebay FAIL….I have been failing at this one for two months..I’m such a procrastinator.
  7. Write 3 blogs a week. FAIL. I think my average was 2 times a week.

October Goals:

  1. Save $2500
  2. Spend no more than $2500
  3. Pay $400 to car loan
  4. Workout 4x week and lose 2 lbs
  5. Make $200 of side hustle $
  6. Sell 2 pairs of shoes on ebay
  7. Write 3 blogs a week
  8. Finish MIS class

Keeping goals keeps me accountable. I know some of the goals seem a little redundant, but they are good anyways!!! By they way, the only reason we are saving so much even though our spending has been a little high is because both, my husband and I have full-time jobs, and side gigs to make more money during the month.

Sometimes I feel like my goals are a little too high to actually pass them all. For example, keeping spend under $2500. Since we are working more than 40 hours a week, we usually don’t have time to make dinner, and thus, end up eating out which adds up. At least we are challenging ourselves right?

September 2012 Goals

August is gone, and it’s time to start the Fall!!! Time is flying by which is both good and bad. It’s good because seeing me cross off all the goals feels nice, but at the same time I feel myself getting older and part of me starts freaking out. Will I accomplish everything in my goals? Am I too aggressive? LOL Part of me wants to sit back and relax, and the other part of me wants to bulldoze through life and get things done.

I sat down for a short lunch with my VP on Friday. It was great to get some feedback and we started talking about some long term goals. Nothing set in stone, but I voiced how I felt about my career moving forward. I feel very lucky and grateful to have such a great boss and VP who care about the development of their employees. I’m not sure how long I will stay at this company, who knows what will happen in the future, but I like where I am at right now. So far so good. There are periods of times where I’m running around like crazy (last Mon-Thurs) and dragging slow times (last Friday).

I went to visit my family this weekend and it was pretty good. I realized I need to get home to see them more often. Hoping maybe the second week of October. I need to check my school calendar. I started school this week again! We’ll see how it goes.

Here the goals for this month.

  1. Save, save, save $2500. Setting the monthly goal pretty high considering this month is not a three paycheck month. Aim high, hopefully land somewhere close. :) We are really trying to build up our $20,000 EF by December.
  2. Spend no more than $2500.
  3. Pay $400 to car loan
  4. Workout 4 times a week and lose 3 pounds. I have gained a couple pounds since I started working at the office. I have been working out but it’s not enough. I need to start running again. So, my goal this month is to do 3 hours of fitness classes and 1 hour of hard core cardio a week.
  5. Make some side hustle $$$ Babysitting is getting pretty old…The lady I work for keeps asking to babysit on the hour she wants me to come and I have to change my plans if I want to make money. It’s money though and I can’t complain. I’m pretty sure I can last until December, but I think I’m going to have to do something different in 2013.
  6. Sell 2 pairs of shoes on Ebay. I have two pairs of brand new Vince Camuto shoes that I need to sell!
  7. Write 3 blogs a week. Write 2 guest posts.

I’ve decided to go with Ortho A for my braces. This will be an added expense over the next 2.5 yrs that I need to take into account in my budget. I’m so excited! Even though I’m not going to enjoy having the braces, I can’t wait to see the end result :)

There it is. Hope everybody has set some goals for September! :)

2012 Goals Progress: August

It seems like just yesterday, I was just writing my goals for August! I honestly can’t believe August is over. The Olympics are over, too!!! I miss the summer already!

Let’s see how well I did during August:

    • Spend no more than $2500 FAIL
    • Save $3000 ( We saved $2500! A little short of the $3000, but still pretty good. Trying to build up that EF)
    • Pay $500 to car loan (We only paid $400.)
    • Set up contribution to ESPP (Contribution set!)
    • Workout 4-5x a week ( Let’s just say I made it to the gym 3X a week. I fell a little short. But still…progress)
    • Write 3-5X blog posts a week I consistently wrote a minimum of 3x a week! :)
    • Make some side hustle $$$ I babysat a lot! :)
    • Sell 3 pairs of shoes on Ebay FAIL
    • Sell books on Amazon FAIL

I started classes again….I don’t want to go back to school! But I gotta finish this MBA. I’m honestly tired of studying MBA subjects. I wouldn’t mind learning about something else, but international business, economics, and information technology is all getting a little boring. I gotta hold out…4 more classes…I can make it….

I already feel the stress building up. I start thinking about everything I have to do, and I start freaking out! I gotta remember to take it one day at a time, make a plan, and cross out items from my to do list.

As much as we wanted to spend no more than $2500, it was actually a little more. I haven’t added it up, but we bought contacts and some other stuff. Plus, the tires for my car. I’m still extremely proud of us for being able to save $2500. It took a lot of hard work and determination. We are getting better with eating out too! I am brown bagging it to work M-F and so is the Mr.!

We, also, have to pay a toll tag bill from our vacation in SC. I forgot to pay it in early Aug. and now it’s more. $1.25 toll turned into $26 (so called administrative fee…really a paper and a stamp costs this much???) + $18 (that’s how much Enterprise charges us for transferring the toll violation).

Other than that, just trying to enjoy life. :)

How did you do on your August 2012 goals?

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