I love goals, but I’ve never been the best at keeping them. So in an effort to stay on track and help anyone else who is trying to stay accountable to theirs, I thought I’d share a monthly update here. You can find the New Year’s goals post that details everything here.
It feels a little weird to track these publicly. But I know how much it motivates me to hear about other people’s goals and progress, so I’m hoping this does the same for you.
Big Financial Goals
Overall grade: B-
#1: F- Fund
Goal: to make our monthly transfer. This is an account separate from our “emergency savings.” We call this our freedom fund (or f-it fund). It’ll be there in case Jordan ever wants to make a career jump that would require some extra cushioning. I didn’t have one of these funds when I made a career move and I wish I had. Read more about it here.
January update: Yes! Winning here. We made the full transfer that we needed to.
#2: Tiny Home
Goal: again, to make our monthly transfer. Hitting this monthly transfer is highly dependent on me making more and I didn’t make enough to get us to 100%. Last year we bought a piece of land and we’re really eager to put a tiny home on it. Not just any tiny home. This sleek beauty from the Netherlands.
January update: Meh. We made great progress and opened up the LifeStrategy fund with Vanguard to house our investment. We also made a transfer that was 63% of the amount we needed to make. Bummer.
#3: College Fund (529)
Goal: Make our first annual contribution in January with the windfall we received. College is expensive.
January update: I got nervous. I’m 33 weeks pregnant and it felt like I was jinxing something by opening up an account too early. I picked the plan we’re going to use (Nevada State plan through Vanguard) and I figured out how to use Personal Capital’s college planning tool. This tool is helping us to make decisions on how much we want to contribute and whether we’re on track to meet that goal. Spoiler: we’re behind already so we need to kick our savings up-a-notch. For anyone using Personal Capital, here’s what it looked like when I put in our goal for college (and for anyone not using it, it’s a free tool that I’ve come to rely on a lot).
Make More Goal
Overall Grade: A
Goal: One new job each month. I was on cruise control in my business last year but I’m really trying to kick things up a notch this year with more writing jobs and marketing specifically for financial services.
Jan Update: Made it! But to be honest I didn’t have to go out and cold pitch for this. It was for a previous client. I did go in pretty bold with my pricing though, so I’m still proud of myself. Now onto pitching for my Feb goal…
Spend Smarter Goal
Overall Grade: A for Jordan. B+ for Erica
Goal: Reflect on the purchases we’ve made over the month to make sure that we’re spending mindfully on the things that make us happiest. In other words, don’t buy sh*t you don’t need.
Jan Best Purchases:
Erica: We took a trip to Paris the first weekend in January and I ate my way through that glorious city. I loved every minute of it (the image up top was taken there!).
Jordan: Plans changed and my parents can’t come out to London for the birth of our child. They are heartbroken. So are we. Since it may be 5 months until I see them again, I bought a plane ticket to Santa Barbara, CA. Getting some sun is an unintended consequence of this purchase.
Jan Worst Purchases:
Erica: I’m not my usual size or shape and can only fit into 10% of the clothes that I own. While me getting bigger is a good sign that this baby is healthy, I still struggle with not looking my best. All that to say I bought some clothes that I hoped would boost my confidence. They didn’t. My fix going forward is whenever I feel like I want to buy something new to try to squeeze into, I’m going to make a deposit into a savings account using Qapital. Then I’ll spend that money on new clothes later this year when I’m back in a shape that feels good!
Jordan: I’m feeling pretty good about myself. Only a small handful of afternoon snacks and no impulse snack purchases at the train station all month. I broke my habit of comfort snacks saving us a few dollars (quid) everyday. It is small but feels good.
Live Bigger Goals
Overall grade: A for Jordan (again). D for Erica (sigh).
Goal: Make it to the two places on the top of our bucket list: Amsterdam and somewhere in Sweden
Jan Update: We didn’t book any travel because we’re going to wait until April to make plans but we did continue to put away money into our vacation savings account. If we continue like this, we’re in a good position to take both of those trips this year.
Erica’s goal: Do yoga 5x’s a week (it makes me a better, more patient person)
Jordan’s goal: Crossfit 3x’s a week
Jan Update: The other morning Jordan commented that it had been a while since he’d seen me roll out my yoga mat. That should give you an idea of how I did with that goal (though the last week of Jan I did yoga 3 times!). I’m not giving up on this one though and I need to start tracking it. So far I’m 1 for 1 on yoga in Feb, so I’m feeling pretty proud of myself.
Jordan hit his CrossFit goal and then some. While my waist is continually expanding, his is shrinking. What happened to sympathy weight? But he did a great job.
The Worth Project goals
Overall grade: C (tbh, I don’t really know how to grade this one, but this feels fair)
Overall goals for the 1st quarter: (1) double the number of people reached each month; (2) create an investing guide by the end of February; (3) host some sort of workshop or class; (4) take a writing class
Jan update: (1) I didn’t double the # of people that I reached this month. Not even close. But hey, it didn’t go down! I’m up 8%. I’ll take it. But now I do need to make good on this goal and start doing something with social media. Halp!
(2) & (3) Investing guide & workshop? I have some ideas. The investing guide will definitely be out in Feb.
(4) Take a writing course. Well, I signed up for one! I’ll count that as a win.
Note: we use Personal Capital to track all our accounts in one place. It’s a free tool that makes organizing things easier. The links in here are affiliate links, but I only recommend it because I use and love it (and because it’s free!). You can read more information on our affiliate disclaimer here.
THE LATEST & GREATEST
Five years ago Jordan’s MBA program was headed to Russia and I was completely jealous. I’d never been. The way his work schedule fell, he was able to go 10 days early to travel and explore. I desperately wanted to go and we started sketching out what a trip would look...read more
Get the No Budget, Budget FREE Workbook A budget for people who hate budgeting. As part of my morning routine, I get out for an early morning walk each day. It’s a habit that I got into a few years ago and have absolutely loved since. Funny side note: my dog hates...read more
The best things in life are free. Right? When it comes to the tools that I'm currently loving to help me organize my money, that's definitely true. I've shared before how I'm not naturally a saver, but I've managed to set up systems and nudges that make it easier for...read more
HAPPY HOUR FOR YOUR INBOX
smart reads + self-care + inspiring interviews all sent to your inbox every Friday. So you can say "see ya" to those Sunday scaries.