My goals are broken up into four categories: financial, education/training, health, and website. I write these goals post to keep myself accountable and to give you an insight on what I’m focused on this year.
Let’s take a look at the progress I made in Q2 before diving into my goals for Q3.
Q2 2017 Highlights
Q2 was a pretty exciting quarter of the year because of the following:
- I was able to pay off all my debt
Check out my post (I’m Debt Free!) on how I paid off over $55k in debt and what good habits I picked up in the process. Becoming debt free was one of the main reasons I started this site in late 2016. This site has served as a great motivator for me, and I’ve learned a ton in the last 6-8 months that will only help me make the best long-term decisions. I hope this site can help others that go through similar debt situations as I did. Now that I am debt free, I’m super pumped to turn the money I was “saving” (AKA putting towards debt) and actually save and invest!
2. I took my first trip to Europe
With the power of travel hacking, I was able to travel on an extreme discount. Check out my Europe Trip Report for full details on how I pulled off my trip for cheap.
3. I got a new job in April
After being with my 1st company out of college for 3.5 years, I was able to land a new job with a tech company in Austin. With this job, I will have more responsibility but also more opportunities to learn marketable skills. Also, the increased pay will help me meet my savings and investing goals at a much faster pace!
Q2 2017 Category Results
As mentioned above, I was able to pay off all my debt in April. I wrote my post on the amount of debt I paid off for student loans, but I was also able to pay off my car. I made a bulk payment of $2500 to pay off my car in April as well.
Related post: My 1st Used Car Buying Experience
Other Notable Wins
- I opened up a rollover IRA and a Roth IRA with Vanguard. My rollover IRA was from my former employers 401k plan at Fidelity. I had a Roth 401k with my old employers plan so I was able to open a Roth IRA and transfer the Roth 401k into the new Vanguard account as well. I’m planning to max out my Roth IRA in 2017 (hopefully in Q3).
- My new employer’s health insurance plan includes an option for an HSA, so I immediately set it up with payroll deductions and will max it out in 2017.
- I was also able to fund my emergency fund fully. Check out this post where I share the details of my emergency fund.
I didn’t meet my side hustle income goal of $750 I set out for Q2. However, I continued flipping items on eBay and tried out Rover for the first time. I had a great time looking after a French bulldog puppy over a weekend in June. My weekends have been pretty busy, so I can’t do Rover all the time, but I look forward to continuing it for the rest of the year. I look forward to increasing my flipping, JobSpotter, and other “sharing economy” side hustles in Q3.
Related post: Earn Side Income to Attack Debt
Overall, I was able to increase my net worth by $13k in Q2. I’m pretty happy with that progress!
I read some pretty good books in Q2:
- The Simple Path to Wealth – JL Collins
- Shoe Dog– Phil Knight
- The Compound Effect – Darren Hardy
- The War of Art – Steven Pressfield
- Blue Ocean Strategy – Pierre Pichere
- You Are A Badass – Jen Sincero
I also have regularly been listening to my favorite podcasts – “Choose FI”, “The Quote of the Day Show”, “Afford Anything”, “Radical Personal Finance”, “Millennial Money Minutes”, and “The Minimalists”. There is lots of great information in these podcasts.
Also, with my new job, I am learning a lot about Agile Methodology and went to an Agile conference in May.
I got a Fitbit in May, and it has helped a lot with motivation to get steps in and get proper amounts of sleep. I love tracking as much as I can, and my Fitbit helps me make better health decisions.
I am still struggling with maintaining a morning routine though. My new job starts earlier than my last, and I need to wake up way earlier to have success with my morning routine. So, instead of getting to bed at 11 or 12, I need to shoot for 9 or 10 pm.
The volume of my posts slipped in Q2. I was only able to put out a total of 4 posts in Q2. I enjoyed the posts I wrote, but I plan to increase my post volume in Q3. Most successful financial bloggers I follow post 8 or more times a month. When I do increase my volume of posts, my priority is to make sure they are valuable. My preference would be to have less volume of quality posts rather than more low-quality posts.
I have also slipped a little bit on social media engagement. I look forward to improving my engagement in Q3.
Q3 2017 Goals
Q3 Financial Goals
Max out Roth IRA and Invest 25% of my pay to my 401k.
I should be on track to achieve both of these goals. Unfortunately, there was a 3-month hold to start contributing to my 401k at my new job. I should be able to start in mid-July and contribute 25% (max that is allowed).
2. Open up taxable investing account at Vanguard
Once I finish maxing out my Roth, I will start investing in a taxable investing account.
3. Meet my Savings Goals
I have eight separate savings accounts with Capital One 360 and have an automatic savings plan. In Q3 my focus is my Travel and Dog Fund. I am planning another trip to Colorado in September and already have the money saved and ready to go. We are planning to get a dog in November, so I am focused on having the 1st year expenses saved before we get the dog (dog emergency fund). Since everything is automatic, I should easily meet all my savings goals.
4. Make $750 in side hustle income
Same purpose as Q2, looking forward to increasing my income with the “sharing economy.”
5. Stay under budget – Food, Transportation, and Shopping
I just updated my budgets based on my spending trends for the last six months.
Q3 Education/Training Goals
Continue to Read and Listen to Podcasts
No specific number of books, just stay the course and continue to learn new things and apply in my life.
2. 1v1 coaching
Put my business savings account to good use and get 1v1 coaching on ways to improve my site.
3. Affiliate Marketing Course
Looking to use my platform to generate passive income through affiliate marketing. After 1v1 coaching, I would like to take this course.
Q3 Health Goals
Get Enough Sleep
Go to bed earlier and get 7 hours to sleep each night.
2. Establish Morning Routine
From the book the Compound Effect, it’s important to set attainable goals first and consistently complete them. My goal is to finish my morning routine 4x per week. My morning routine consists of drinking a pint of ice water first thing, then meditation, then working out (listening to an audio book during workout).
3. Reduce Stress
With my new job, I am struggling a little bit with managing stress. Sticking with a morning routine should help, but I would also like to work on additional ways to reduce my anxiety from work.
Q3 Website Goals
Increase Social Media and Email Engagement
Same goals as previously mentioned in Q2. I would like to get more of my content out to more people.
2. More Posts
I need to invest more time into writing and to produce content regularly.
Question for you.
What is your primary goal for Q3 2017?