Because even though money is no longer the top rated New Year’s Resolution, it is still a darn important goal for me! I’ve set some ambitious but still realistic goals for my income, savings, and retirement investments, and if I meet all of these goals (especially the income goal), I will be one happy gal.
- Making money: My goal is to make $78,000 gross this year, and this will come from a combination of regular paychecks, bonuses, freelance income, dividends, and any gift money I am lucky enough to receive. That means every month I should be on target to hit $6,500 – though of course some months it will be higher or lower.
- Saving money: I want to save $2,500 in the Galapagos Fund (we currently have $3,000 in the Fund). CB usually puts in the same amount, so if we can contribute a total of $5,000, that would be amazing. This is a trip I really, truly, deeply do want to take in the middle of 2012, so the clock is ticking!
- Investing money: I will contribute a total of $21,500 to retirement accounts: Roth IRA ($5,000) and 401K ($16,500). I may also consider setting up a SEP IRA, depending on what my 2010 freelance income comes out to. In addition, all of my dividends will be automatically reinvested (compounding interest!), so I will be investing a wee bit over the $21,500 mark.
Run a Better Blog
I have to admit, I’ve been very bad about commenting on other blogs lately, and for a while there I was feeling like I’m in a personal finance rut (hence the proliferation of fitness articles… otherwise, I wouldn’t have anything to write about!). But a new year is a new year, so I am recharging and committed to improving the quality of my posts and the quality and frequency of my interaction with bloggers and readers.
- Interface: You might have noticed that I’ve been tinkering with the blog look and have given it a face lift (I am using Catalyst Theme, a premium WordPress Theme, and I am so far VERY pleased with it – I will write a more in-depth review on it soon). I have a few other elements I want to add, but I think it’s going in the right direction. If you are reading via an RSS feed, come on over and check out the new look.
- Interaction: My goal is to comment on 15 blogs a week – I love reading comments and very much appreciate the time that you guys take to leave comments, so it’s only right that I do the same for the blogs that I read and enjoy.
- Carnivals: I aim to participate in 2 Carnivals of Personal Finance and 2 Yakezie Carnivals a month.
- Alexa Ranking: I’ve never paid much attention to site rankings, but I should! LOL. Doesn’t mean it’s the be-all and end-all of blogging, but it’s one of many important metrics and metrics keep me on track. My goal is for Well Heeled Blog to break into the 70,000 Alexa Ranking. I am currently at around 200,000+, so this will take some work.
Life, Health, and Happiness
Because I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: what good is a big pile of money if you are not happy, healthy, and enjoying life? For this “life” bucket, I want to focus on travel, fitness, personal development, and giving.
- Travel: I plan to do some domestic travel, maybe a trip to Washington, D.C., Virginia, and North Carolina. I’ve always been fascinated by those parts of the country…who knows why! I may also take another trip up to Boston area, because, well, I loved it so.
- Fitness: I aim to exercise for 4-5 hours a week: 1-2 hours of Bar Method, 2 hours of Fitness Boot Camp, and 1 hour of running.
- Personal Development: This is for classes / self-development that I might want to undertake, such as Chinese Mandarin classes, MySQL classes, public speaking seminars, SEO / blogging e-books, etc.
- Giving: I will continue to give $20 a month to Central Asia Institute, an organization dedicated to the education of girls in Afghanistan and Pakistan. I give $50 a year to my college.