“It’s only a dream until you write it down, then it becomes a goal.”
I have never written down my goals, ever. I am not lazy, my life hums along, things get accomplished … but I don’t write down my goals. The past few weeks I have been really inspired by the 2016 year in review posts from my favorite PF bloggers and I am really blown away by what they have accomplished. It is no mystery their success started with taking time to write down their goals.
I am 46 years old and feel like I am moving at a snail’s pace to get my family ready for our retirement/financial freedom date (59.5 at the latest, earlier if we can get a few payments ahead on the mortgage.) I sometimes get bogged down by the chaos of the holidays or life in general. I dream of a slower lifestyle but am almost immediately saddened by the idea that life WILL slow down when my children are out of the house in about 10 years, give or take. Internal turmoil ensues – one day I am revising the budget to save more for retirement, the next day I am talking about planning a 3-week west coast road trip adventure (we live in the north east) to capture that precious family time. Balance is achievable, but not without some serious and solid planning and goal setting.
So, here goes:
- Buy an investment property funded by our self-directed IRA. This has been in motion since the end of 2015 and has hit one obstacle after another because the learning curve of non-recourse lending is more than I anticipated.
- Make money with a Laundromat. Laundromats gross about $5 billion annually per the Coin Laundry Association. I want in! We have been researching this idea for about a year and hope to have some progress in the next 6 – 9 months. Full post on my ‘dirty dreams’ coming soon!
- Set up a stock portfolio to generate dividends. We are in all mutual funds right now and I know that stock dividend income is a huge gap in our retirement savings plan.
- Age my YNAB (You Need A Budget) money to at least 60 days. This basically means that we are paying bills with money we made 2 months earlier.
- Close 8 real estate transactions with my side hustle. I started selling real estate last February and closed 4 deals in 2016. I plan to double that in 2017.
- Reduce the grocery bill by 30%. We are spending close to $1,000 a month on food (not including restaurants.) I’ve been in denial about this, suspecting and fearing the worst. I started budgeting with YNAB 3 months ago, and, yep, it’s all true. Seriously, I must get on top of this. A PF blogger sporting a $1,000 grocery bill simply cannot gain any street cred.
- Make broad plans for 3 adventure trips – NYC in June 2017, West Coast road trip June 2018, Ireland 2019. Start researching AIRBNB, RV rentals, VRBO and home swap options. It will be expensive, but there are ways to defray the cost.
- Build relationships with other bloggers. The PF blogging community is so great – very warm and welcoming. I am looking forward to reading your awesome posts, cheering your successes and sharing strong content on my own blog.
I’d love to share my progress with you. Please leave me your email address and I will drop you a line when I post new content.
Time to take down the Christmas tree and pack it all away until next year. Hope you had a great holiday and best wishes in 2017. Let’s make it a great one!