My financial goals have been front and center in my mind the last couple of weeks. It’s taking some time, and a lot of missteps, but I finally feel like I’m starting to get this money thing down! The more I understand my money, the more opportunities I see for improving Bryan and my life. The reality is, the life we live doesn’t have to be expensive. We just have to make better choices, and use our money as the tool it should be, instead of letting it control us.
Which brings me back to goals. I did a mini check-in after selling my house, when I realized I’d achieved many of my goals. If I’m going to create a better life, becoming lazy isn’t an option! So, I added a new goal, and re-evaluated where I was on everything else. So where am I now, at the end of 2015 Quarter 2?
These are the goals I’ve already crossed off my list this year:
1) Grow my net worth by $10,000 ($21,696 total net worth). Done!
2) List the house. Done!
3) Pay off the student loan. Done!
5) Earn $500 in “Side Income”. Done!
You can read more about those goals here and here. My goal of earning $500 in “Side Income” was achieved in June, after we had a yard sale. I’m still looking for a more sustainable way to earn a side income, but that isn’t my main focus right now.
So, which goals am I still working on?
4) Invest $3,000 in a retirement account. At this point I’ve invested $872.76 in my company’s 401k plan. This only includes my contributions, not any employer match or market gains (or losses). Unless something crazy unexpected happens between now and the end of the year, this goal isn’t going to happen. Not that it couldn’t happen; If I made this goal my next priority, I could wipe it out in the next few months. But I’ve decided that becoming debt free is a higher priority at this point in my life.
6) Pay off the car loan. I started 2015 with $18,724 owed on my car loan. As of June 30th, it’s down to $14,033. Obviously I still have a long ways to go on this one. But, since it just became a priority for me, I’m just really starting to make progress. This is definitely my stretch goal this year. Even if I don’t get the loan 100% paid off, I’ll still be in a much better position financially than I am now.
7) Grow my net worth by $10,000 ($31,696 total net worth). I ended June with a net worth of $23,110. I’m 14% to this new goal, which means I have $8,586 left to go. If I stay on track, and the markets don’t do too bad, I think this goal is doable.
My main focus for the rest of 2015 is to pay off my car loan. Doing so will help me reach the goal of growing my net worth by an additional $10,000 and will also set me up nicely for some major changes I’m looking forward to in 2016. As time goes on, my goals are becoming less arbitrary, and more of a means to an end. Sure, growing my net worth is great. But I’m finally starting to figure out why that’s important to me, and what direction I’m wanting my life to take.
I’m excited about what the future holds. And honestly, a little scared too. But, now that I’m gaining some clarity on what is truly important to me, I’m really starting to make some progress. I’m really excited about the possibilities!
– Cindy W.