Already four months behind us this year, and 8 months left to crush our goals. I’ve switched my goals update from a one-month report to a combined two-month report. It seems like it’s way better this way because for long-term goals I was not seeing such improvement over a one-month period. Anyway, March and April were pretty crazy at work for me, and we had some family members visiting us for nearly three weeks in April, so I would not have been able to produce it on time last month. As I publish this post there are still 237 days to go before 2018 so a lot can happen until then (and this leaves us with a lot of time to reach our goals).
If you’re new here, every month (or sometimes every two months like this post) I’m detailing the progress I made on my goals for the year. I’ve split my goals for 2017 in three different categories: financial, blogging and personal goals. You may be wondering why I would want to share my goals with the rest of the world? This is essentially for the same reason that I share my financial stats, which is for accountability and motivation purposes. At the end of the year I’ll be able to track and measure my overall progress regarding these goals. This is also for my readers to be aware that having financial goals in place is key to success.
Anyway, let’s dive in and take a quick look at the progression of each one of the 12 goals I’ve set myself last December for the year 2017.
Financial Goals Update #2
- Goal #1 – Increase our emergency fund to
$2,000$5,000 ( 100%89%)
As explained in my last goals update, I have clearly underestimated last December how much we could afford to save each month. My original goal ($2,000) was already crushed early March, and adjusted to $5,000 to reflect a more realistic one. As of this writing we’ve just reached $4,500 in our Tangerine account, and I’m already planning to up this account to $6,000 before redirecting our contributions elsewhere. It’s still on auto-pilot as I’m contributing $100 each paycheck but with some new upcoming lump-sum contributions it should be done quickly!
- Goal #2 – Increase our combined Net Worth by 100% (86%)
We just crossed the $20,500 mark for our combined Net Worth (up from $12,207 last December). With a target of $22,000 by the end of 2017, this leaves us with around $1,500 to contribute before the year ends, which amounts to around $188 per month. This feels like a no-brainer with only our regular contributions, so if we factor in some one-time lump sum contributions, we’ll be able to reach it undoubtedly (which should be attained next month). I definitely want to take advantage of this to totally crush our financial goals this year, and maybe reach a whoping 200% increase Year-On-Year! We’ll see how that went next December 🙂
- Goal #3 – Contribute $10,000 to my retirements accounts (40%)
This amount is around the maximum I can contribute for the year 2017 to my Wealthsimple RRSP account (which is 18% of my 2016 earned income) and my employer retirement account. In four months I’ve already added $4,000 (including my pre-tax contributions) so we’re totally on time for a great start on this goal. As with our emergency fund, this one is pretty much on auto-pilot. I must also admit that it feels great to finally take advantage of compound interest!
- Goal #4 – Save at least 20% of our income as an average for the year (currently at 35%)
Still can’t believe it but we’ve been able to reach at least 30% savings rate four months in a row! With a 38% savings rate in April (the first three months of the year were respectively 29%, 39% and 32%), we’re way on time to reach our 20% target before the year ends. Definitely some more progress and consistency needed to ensure that we reach this goal, but we’re on a good path it seems. I might even feel confident enough to up this goal in the upcoming months as I don’t see our spending going up and we should definitely be able to stash away a few thousands dollar more in our emergency fund and retirement accounts.
Blogging Goals Update #2
- Goal #5 – Publish at least one blog post every ten days (41%)
I’ve published 5 posts in March, and 4 in April. More planning before writing and posting allowed me to be much better and sustain what I was aiming at in terms of post frequency. Even better is that I already have three posts ready to publish if I feel like it’s required to fit in-between my regular post series (like my net worth update, my goals update and the “grow your blog” series). We’ll see how that goes this summer, because as we’re planning a 5-week trip with nearly no-internet I need to start planning much better and ahead of time. Ideally, I’d like to have one full month of posts written in advance, which seems like so hard at the moment!
- Goal #6 – Have at least 100 subscribers (25%)
Only ten more people subscribed to my newsletter since the last report. That’s ok but it could definitely be better! I’m slowly trying to replace my newsletter optin box placement (which is currently below my posts), because I feel like some people simply do not see it. I’m also in the process of searching for some interesting *goodies* as a reward for subscribing to my newsletter. I’ve also started drafting a basic course on “monetize your blog“, which is far from being finished, but who might help me grow my list in the near future. Anyway, if you don’t wanna miss out my new blog posts, I would love to count you as a Finance For Geek subscriber!
- Goal #7 – Generate $500 in blog income (50%)
I’m not sure if that’s so great for a 6-month old blog, but I’m definitely more than happy to say that I’ve already earned $250 with Finance For Geek! I made a few bucks with some awesome affiliates (Bluehost and X-Theme) and I also started being successful with display advertising and sponsors, specifically since I implemented Facebook Instant Article. Another thing which can be considered as blog income are the referrals I made with Mylo and Wealthsimple, which are two great products I definitely recommend if you’ve not heard of it (just remember that Mylo is for Canadians only, while Wealthsimple works both in the US and Canada). Now onto the next $250 and then the next $500!
- Goal #8 – Learn more about SEO & Social Media (In Progress)
Since I implemented Accelerated Mobile Page and Facebook Instant Articles on this blog, I’ve tweaked a bit this goal to be more focused on social media than SEO, because I’ve learned in the past few weeks that I was way way behind when it come to social media! I’m currently focusing on my Twitter account and my Pinterest account. Drop by if you have any questions I’ll be more than happy to help! So nothing really new here as I’m quickly and thoroughly learning all the ins and outs of these two social media.
Personal Goals Update #2
- Goal #9 – Run at least two more official half marathons races and one full marathon race (33%)
After being denied for the NYC marathon drawing two months ago, I’m still debating in which city I want to run my marathon this year. I’ve chosen last year to run at least one marathon per year, so I still have time to choose to complete this goal. I might get a look at the Disney marathon because it looks so much fun (in California or Florida), I just need to get some friends on board with me (because I do not know a lot of people willing to run a full marathon, as all of my friend call me crazy all the time when I ask them!). Anyway I ran a half marathon a few weeks ago and I’ve got another one just before summer starts, so that’s still a nice training for the full one.
- Goal #10 – Go on at least one big trip (In Progress)
Nothing new here for the past two months, as we already booked in February our annual family visit planned for this summer (5 week trip back in our family in Europe which is going to be a blast!).
- Goal #11 – Take at least three weeks of vacation with my girlfriend and/or my family (66%)
We had some friends and families visiting us in April (this might be one of the reasons I was less active in terms of post writing!), which led to two full weeks of vacation very much needed and relaxing. I’ve still got some day off which I need to take before the summer starts, so with this and our upcoming summer trip, I definitely feel grateful this year for having so many time with my family. Not sure It’ll be like this every year!
- Goal #12 – Read two personal finances related books (50%)
I’ve just finished reading I Will Teach You To Be Rich, by Ramit Sethi. In all honesty, I can say that it’s one the best (and few) personal finance books I’ve read so far. It’s really logical, step-by-step and practical as a handbook for financial success. I think it’s specifically written for young people, but the concepts learned are quite simple, yet so powerful. This might be the biggest drawback of this book, it seems like it’s written for beginners, and if you’re diligent about your personal finance, you might already be doing 80% of the things outlined in this book. Now onto the next one, which I’ve just ordered yesterday: The Wealthy Barber Returns, by David Barr Chilton.
Okay so there you have it, my detailed progression of my goals as of early May 2017! A lot of progress since the beginning of the year, but still a lot more work to do. Everything I learned from starting a blog was truly beneficial, and I really enjoy writing, especially when it comes to financial topics. Let’s make 2017 a great year regarding our goals!