set-2020-goals

#5 Setting Our Goals for 2020

Every year. Every single damn year. I make my New Years resolutions, only to completely forget about them 3 weeks into the year. Forget New Years Resolutions; everyone does it but NOBODY follows through. Let’s make a change. It’s a new decade. We are going to be focused on setting our goals for 2020 and then aggressively execute them. No excuses. 

Why Can't I Just Wing It?

I haven’t ever sat down and planned out my yearly goals in a broad sense. Sure, I plan out my weeks, and sometimes even up to a month, but never a full year.

Here’s why 2020 should be different.

Imagine this: You want to be a sailor. So you go out and buy a boat. Great! You are now a sailor. You grab your sailor hat and your fishing gear, and hit the high seas – no destination in mind, just out there floating around enjoying the day.

All is well at first, but you didn’t do your research beforehand. You didn’t bring any navigational tools, you don’t have the necessary emergency gear, and you didn’t know a storm was rolling in. All the sudden, the storm hits and blows you miles away from the coast, so you have absolutely no idea where you are. 

Bet you wish you were prepared now. 

Don’t be like this sailor. 

Don’t just start a journey without planning ahead. You need to first gather the tools needed to succeed.

One day, a storm will hit and you’ll be left stranded. Do what you can to account for this inevitable storm – you never know when it will hit.

If you don’t have an emergency fund in place, you won’t be able to weather the storm. 

Let’s gather our navigational equipment and emergency gear, and get a course of action in place for when we set sails in 2020. 

The 2020 Gameplan

Here’s the gameplan: 

Set your overall 2020 goals, and then divide it up by Quarter. Write this all down either on a physical paper, or a Word document that you keep on you desktop. I’ll provide an example below. 

Our goal is to upgrade our mind, body, and creativity. 

Mind: We are going to learn more in 2020 than we ever have out of any year. Pick a new skill to learn, and master it by the end of the year. Sign up for the Morning Brew to stay up to date on what’s going on in the world. It’s basically like a daily newspaper sent to your email but formatted in a nice, easy-to-read design. I’m a big fan of it. Set a goal for how many books/audiobooks you want to read/listen to per quarter.

Body: I know I know. We set this goal every year. I struggle with it too, honestly. However this doesn’t mean we shouldn’t try. The best way to get into shape is to find a way to enjoy the process of it. If you hate going to the gym, sign up for some classes that are more engaging. Find an activity that involves physical exercise, such as biking, swimming, or going for walks every day. Set your physical goals accordingly. 

Creativity: We all have an inner creator within us. It doesn’t matter if you think you are creative or not. Creativity is like a muscle – it’s something that needs to be exercised. You will find that the more you practice exercising your creativity, the more benefits it will have in all of your cognitions. In addition, your creative talents may often lead to you finding your passion. Step one: stop telling yourself you aren’t creative, and just start creating.

The best way to set goals is to set SMART Goals: Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, Timebound. Click on that link to read about how you can properly set your goals to maximize their effectiveness.

I personally keep my financial goals separate from the rest of my goals. I have a specific document that I’m using to divide my financial goals up by the quarter in order to set a reasonable pace to meet my yearly goal. 

Minted Millennial 8 Goal Challenge

So I have a little challenge for you. 

Well, it’s not really that little.

This is my 8 Goal Challenge to transform your financial life.

Keep in mind, these goals are pretty aggressive, but if you pursue these, then you will surely find yourself living with more wealth than you ever have before. 

So why not at least try? Write these down on a sticky note, and put it on your bathroom mirror to reflect on every day. Here they are:

  1. Create an effective budget. 
    • This will set up your foundation for financial success. Start this by tracking your expenses for a month.
    • 33% of Americans don’t use a budget. That is a third of the population. Don’t fall under that group.
    • Read my awesome guide on how to start your budget here.
  2. Build your emergency fund up to $10k.
    • This is a big one. But an important one. 
    • Follow my Spending Roadmap to know when you’re ready to do this. 
    • Renaming your emergency fund can actually make it easier to save to it. Read about it here.
  3. Max out Roth IRA contribution.
    • This account is tax-advantaged. So take advantage. 
    • The contribution limit for 2020 is $6,000. That’s $500 a month.
    • Set up automatic investments, and dividend reinvesting.
    • Emulate this simple investment strategy if you’re not sure how to manage it.
  4. Cut up your credit card: No more debt.
    • This one is pretty self-explanatory.
    • Even if you’re still in debt, do this. You’ll never pay it off if you keep using it. 
    • For now on, if you can’t afford it with cash, don’t buy it. If you want something, you save up for it.
    • If you have student loan debt, pay it off faster using these strategies.
  5.  Create 4 more streams of revenue.
    • This one can be tough. But it will help you a ton in achieving the rest of these goals.
    • Every single millionaire has multiple streams of income. If you want to payoff debt fast, you’ll need this. 
    • Here are 30 Side Hustles that can be scaled into a full-time business.
    • The more consistent you are with your side-hustles, the more you make.
    • You don’t need to start them all at once. My recommendation would be to start a new one every quarter for the next year.
  6. Read 15 business/finance books.
    • This one is pretty flexible. I know with your job, running multiple side-hustles, and your other obligations, you may be running low on free-time.
    • This goal would be about 4 books per Quarter. If this is too much, adjust. I’d rather you soak up the details of your books rather than speed-reading through them.
    • If you commit an hour or two of reading before bed every night, you should be able to reach your goal.
    • If you’re interested in getting into the stock market (which you need to), here are the best investing books for beginners.
    • Reading books will improve your financial literacy and prowess more than anything.
  7. Save/Invest at least 40% of your income.
    • Dang, don’t people usually say something like 10%? Nah we’re going to go hard this year.
    • Saving can be putting money in your Emergency fund, a high-yield savings account for large upcoming expenses, etc.
    • Investing can mean a lot of things. You can invest in the stock market, real estate, improving your side-hustles, increasing your knowledge, etc. Anything that will offer a return greater than what you put it. 
    • You may have to start really slimming down on your expenses to achieve this.
  8. Master one new marketable skill.
    • I recommend that this be something that you enjoy doing.
    • Here’s a nice list of skills to get some ideas out there for you.
    • This could go in tangent with both your side-hustle goal and your saving/investing goal.
    • Invest in yourself. Invest in the knowledge of a marketable skill that you could potentially turn into a business, or get a higher paying job with. And in something that you enjoy doing.
    • Focusing on one skill will allow you to truly master it. Don’t be a “Jack of all trades Master of none.”

Think you’re up for it? I know you are capable of it.

I know this may not be remotely feasible for some people. If you have kids or are just very busy, these goals can be extremely challenging. Adjust to your life needs and income level accordingly.

Be sure to track everything that you’re doing so that you can measure your performance towards these goals.

Break them down into quarters, months, and even weeks to make them more manageable. Write out your plans.

My main side hustle right now is this blog. For reference, here are the goals that I am setting to get Minted Millennial off the ground:

aggressive-2020-financial-goals
Aggressive financial goals for 2020 that you should set.

Minted Millennial's Goals

The goals I’m setting to get Minted Millennial going (as of mid December, 2019) are as follows: 

Finishing 2019 Strong

  1. Get 100 followers on Pinterest
  2. Hit 15 Posts
  3. Reach 2,000 pageviews
  4. Get a third category started
  5. Expand Recommendations page
  6. Create a monetization strategy

2020 Overall Goals

  1. Create 5 revenue streams.
  2. Get student loan payments down to $20,000. (Currently at $30k)
  3. End Credit Card usage completely
  4. Earn 15,000 page-views consistently per month for Minted Millennial
  5. Master Pinterest
  6. Cut expenses down to an average of $1,250 per month for 2021

Quarter 1 Goals

January | February | March

Goals

Results

Get up to 3,000 pageviews/month

March Pageviews:

Have at least 35 blog posts/Guest Posts

Number of Posts:

200 Pinterest Followers

Number of Followers:

Write first e-book/e-course

eBook Title:

Startup a second side-hustle

Second Side-Hustle:

Have credit cards paid off in full

Credit Amount:

Income Goals: $200

Quarter 2 Goals

April | May | June

Goals

Results

5,000 pageviews/month

June Pageviews:

Have at least 60 blog posts/guest posts

Number of posts:

500 Pinterest followers

Number of Followers:

Write another e-book

eBook Title:

Start two more side-hustles

Side Hustles:

Student Loans down to $27,000

Student Loan Amount:

Total Income Goals: $1,200

Quarter 3 Goals

July | August | September

Goals

Results

9,000 pageviews/month

September Pageviews:

Have at least 100 blog posts/guest posts

Number of posts:

1k Pinterest followers

Number of Followers:

Create another eBook/Course/Webinar

Title:

Have all 5 side-hustles working

Side Hustles:

Student Loans down to $24k

Student Loan Amount:

Repurpose on second social media platform (YouTube, Instagram, Twitter, etc.)

Platform:

Total Income Goal: $3,000

Quarter 4 Goals

October | November | December

Goals

Results

15,000 pageviews/month

December Pageviews:

Have at least 120 blog posts/guest posts

Number of posts:

1.5k Pinterest followers

Number of Followers:

Earn 100 Followers/Subscribers on second social media

 Number:

Eliminate worst-performing side-hustle

Side Hustle Eliminated:

Total Student Loan Amount down to $20,000.

Student Loan Amount:

Total Income Goal: $5,000

I plan on putting all the revenue generated from my side hustles into either paying off my student loans or into reinvesting to earn more money. 

By measuring the metrics on what I actually achieve in the Results column, I know where I need to adjust my focus for the next quarter. 

I will be very happy if I can achieve this outline of a plan by 2021. Of course, I would hope to surpass these goals. I believe this will challenge me, but not overwhelm me.

I’ll post quarterly updates on the status of these goals and whether or not I change anything based on how everything is going.

Now that you see how I set my yearly goals, I encourage you to go in and create your own in this format! Next up we will create an attack strategy on how we intend to achieve our Q1 goals.

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