Goal Setting

It’s amazing to watch how your goals change and morph over time, often dependent on the circumstances that surround you.

In August 2009, I put together a list of 1, 5 and 10 year goals in personal, business and health.  One-year goals were things such as get a pet (check), get a promotion (check), pay off credit cards (in process) and practice yoga multiple times a week (fail).  Five-year goals were fairly obscure, such as live in city I want to live in, pay off student loans, find a position that challenges my abilities (?) and run a half marathon. Ten-year goals were things like be settled in ideal city,  be able to teach yoga, over $100k in my retirement accounts.

I look at myself from two years ago and see very little left.  Less than a month after writing those, while practicing yoga, I tore my Superior Labrum (SLAP tear) and rotator cuff.  Four months later, the guy I’d been dating broke it off.  My credit card debt went up.  And I’m still in the same city.  I feel so far removed from the twenty-three year old girl who wrote those that it’s hard to imagine actually fulfilling those now.

So I set new goals.

And I left a lot of blank spaces.    I know that if you write your goals down, they’re more likely to happen, but I look at my old goals and realize they’re not even goals I want anymore.  I don’t want to “settle down” in some TBD city.  I don’t want to stay on the same path I’ve been on.  I constantly struggle with doing things that make me happy and not what I think will make me happy, just as Gretchen Rubin of the Happiness Project constantly has to remind herself to “Be Gretchen.”

As of today, I have all of my one year goals completely filled in, my five years goals 85% filled in and my ten-year goals 30% filled in.  I want to figure out my goals, fill them in and strive for them, but for the time being, I’m happy knowing that I’m back on the right track.

(image via lululemon… particularly fitting since they inspired me to set goals in the first place 2+ years ago)

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Making Decisions

When I started writing this post, I was dreading it.  I knew that people would shake their heads and pass judgement on what I’ve done.  Then I read about how to put off making decisions over at the Art of Non-Conformity, and I saw the past year+ of my life all through it.  In fact, I’m currently guilty of the first one on his list: Apply for something.

Application aside, my life is off autopilot and it’s up to me to make things happen.  Why is that?  Today was my last day at my full-time job.

I’m not leaving with a Plan B.  Or Plan C.  Or Plan D.  There is no backup plan.  It’s sink or swim and I’m the only one who can make sure I get there.

Since I made the decision to leave, I’ve had the words of my high school history teacher resonating in my head… “How hard can it be?”

And I wonder… how hard can it be?

(image via Greg Hartle)

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The first $100!

I am so excited as I write this, because I finally was able to reach the first $100 in advertising revenue in October 2011!

90% of the revenue was from my feed, so thank you to everyone who followed me and glanced at the ads.  I hope I can only bring bigger and better things to this blog in the future!

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October Financial Summary

It’s only been a couple of weeks since the initial post on my actual debt, so the numbers haven’t changed drastically… but here’s the official numbers for my actual debt as of November 1, 2011.

As a reminder, you can view the full, most up-to-date debt spreadsheet here.

For the budgeting portion of my month, I did really well.

Need: -$364.14
Energy was WAY down thanks to the cooler weather.  Winter is coming. (GoT anyone??)   As for how far under my budget I am… maybe it’s time to make a readjustment on my needs.

Save: +$38
I had a savings goal to reach this month, and since my 401(k)s weren’t going to make it… well, I had to throw some extra money there.  I’d rather it be in this category than the other 2 however!

Want: -$113.41
The bulk of this was dining out, Halloween costume (a reuseable ski hat!), a calendar, signing up for Warrior Dash and my blog redesign purchase.

Net worth: $13,259.86 (up 32.35% from September)

October was a really awesome month for me, which is helpful.  With the financial diet in place and most likely a budget update, things are hopefully going to continue looking better next month!

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November Goals

After my October goals were so successful, I realized that I’ve been mostly focusing on two distinct things this last half of 2011: My finances and life enrichment.  I expect I’ll be pushing hard on those two to finish out 2011.  But since I have some major life changes in the coming month, here are November’s goals:

  1. Read 5 books
  2. Reduce credit cards by 10%
  3. Get rid of 25 items
  4. Volunteer at least 3 times

Have you noticed any themes lately for your life?  What are you focusing on in November?

(image via Tao of Chris)

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