With the New Year coming up, its time to think up resolutions for how being a better person next year. Some people dislike making resolutions as most are broken in short order, but since I still complete 30-40% of mine on average, I’m still a fan. I have found over the years though that the fewer you have, the more you can focus on them, and the more you focus the more likely you are to attain whatever you resolve to do. If I were to take that a step further, and concentrate those few goals into only a few areas too, I think I should make even more progress in the direction I want my life to go. So without further ado…
Spend next to nothing outside of food & utilities
I received a lot of pants, shirts, and shoes this year for Christmas. Other than socks I shouldn’t need to buy any clothes at all next year. I have all the furniture and pillows that I need too, so no home decor items either. I need to do this for every aspect of my life other than what could save or make me money.
Learn & practice new handyman skills
I have read books on home electrical wiring, landscaping, and car repair. I have more on the shelf for plumbing and carpentry, and there is a vast array of more information online. I should spend time every month practicing each skill and upgrading my abilities so that I can become more independent and forgo hiring people to do these tasks. While the money saved may only be a few hundred here and there, over the course of a lifetime the skills are worth a small fortune. Plus, the most satisfying parts of being a homeowner so far has been the sense of mastery that comes with being able to complete more and more projects on my own, and I would like to do that in other areas too.
Pay off personal loan and student loan
I’ve mentioned this before, but I would like to kill off my two loans and cut my debt expenses. The personal loan should die no matter what this year, especially since I am not planning any major landscaping projects this year unlike last summer, but the student loan goal will be a stretch. I’ve debated for months whether I should take a second, part-time job to make this happen or whether this would interfere with my other social goals.
Update the blog 3x a month
To keep up my writing skills, as motivation to keep up with my goals, and to generate more material for my Toastmaster’s speeches. It would be nice to one day make this blog profitable, but that is not a high priority at all until my other personal finance goals are achieved.
Staying fit and going to the gym 2-3x a week
If the last week has taught me anything, its that health is extremely important! I got lucky in that it only lasted a few days, and occurred during the quietest time of the year, but it could’ve been otherwise. I should do my best to keep up my health no matter what. I’ve gotten in better shape these last two or three months after I started going to the gym regularly, so I should continue that next year. In the past, I would always get super fit but would then lose any desire to go into the gym and become a blob again. Part of this is from my fondness for long-distance running. I love being able to go out and rack up the miles, while being outside with the wind and birds and clouds…but it just doesn’t burn energy nearly as efficiently as weight training does. Rather than keep on building muscle that consumes calories even as I sleep, I would run like crazy for two or three hours…and then eat and drink and bring all those calories back. I also need to investigate new routes to take. Mine are rather hilly (for Minnesota) and I think that running those same routes consistently put too much stress on the same parts of my joints and made me more prone to injury. I still plan to keep up long distance walking and make short distance running an accessory to my weight training routine.
So that’s it for my 2018 personal finance and health goals. I’ve got a few more on the side for the dating scene and making more friends (especially friends my age, because for some reason everyone running in my circles is in their 50’s or older), but I’ve had those goals every year for like a decade now. Not much to write about. How about you, what are your personal finance goals for the New Year? Feel free to email or comment below!