It’s hard to believe 2019 is over. In many ways, it felt that the year flew by so quickly. At the beginning of 2019, I set out some challenging goals and resolutions that I wanted to accomplish throughout the year. Every quarter, I provided an update on how I was doing. For me, I felt putting my goals on this blog and providing quarterly updates had made me super motivated and also made me very accountable for accomplishing all of my goals.
Let’s see how I did with my 2019 goals and resolutions.
2019 Goals & Resolutions
Being an Excel nerd, I really liked using an Excel sheet for tracking my goals, thanks to Joe for giving me the idea!
- Save for 2020 TFSAs and RESPs ($17,000 total) -> Done! We saved $17,000 in total for the 2020 TFSA and RESP contribution limits. Like many other Canadian money nerds, we transferred the money to the different accounts on January 1st, 2020. Now we just need to purchase some stocks and index ETFs to get our money work hard for us so we don’t have to.
- Dividend Income over $23,000 -> Done (100.2%)! When I set out this very challenging goal at the beginning of 2019, I wasn’t sure if we could accomplish this goal. I am happy to say that we received 23,049.16 in dividend income. Woohoo!
- Max out RRSP contributions -> Done! We maxed out our 2018 RRSP contribution in early Feb 2019.
- Travel Hack 100,000 Marriott rewards points -> Done (242%)! In 2019 we have earned a total of 242,000 Marriott Bonvoy points. At approximately $0.008 per point, this meant we have “earned” $1,936 so far. In case you’re interested, you can apply the American Express Bonvoy personal card with my referral code. By spending $3,000 in the first 3 months, you will receive 51,000 in Marriott Bonvoy points, good enough for 3 nights at a Category 2 hotel. In addition to earning Marriott Bonvoy points, I also applied the TD Infinite Visa and the Scotiabank Passport Visa Infinite Card and earned travel rewards points equivalent of over $650. So in 2019 we “earned” close to $2,600 via travel hacking. Pretty awesome!
- Dividend Income/Annual Expenses ratio 50% -> Not done @ 41.98%. Well, I knew this goal was really ambitious, and I was right. We weren’t able to trim much of our annual expenses which meant we didn’t achieve the 50% ratio I wanted to hit. Having said that, 41.98% is still very respectable. I am even more convinced that living off dividend income is totally doable.
- Publish six high-quality articles every month -> Done (100%). I published a total of 72 articles in 2019 at six per month. To be completely honest, in 2018 I felt slightly unmotivated with finding ideas to write and publishing posts. I think by having this goal for myself (and for my readers) has kept me very motivated and really helped me to stay focused on writing helpful articles. The goal also helped me to better plan my posts.
- Attend FinCon’19 -> Done (100%)! FinCon’19 was a lot of fun. I can’t wait for FinCon’20! In case you’re wondering what FinCon is about, you can read my FinCon 2019 recap here.
- Attend CPFC’19 -> Not done (0%). This goal was outside my control as the Canadian Personal Finance Conference did not happen in 2019.
- Organize a meetup in Vancouver -> Done (200%)! I set up a meetup in July then again in November and met some local bloggers from Vancouver and Vancouver Island.
- Eat better & healthier, avoid snacks at night. Weigh 70 kg by the end of 2019 -> Not done, 77.5 kg. My weight has stayed relatively stable until the last quarter. Having to travel to Asia and Europe for work and celebrating Christmas and New Year’s in Denmark certainly didn’t help on the avoiding snacks side of things. Having said that, I have made some great progress in being more physically fit. Many of my old clothes felt looser and I went from waist size 32 to size 30.
- Go swimming at least once each week. Swim for 100 km in 2019 -> Done (107%)! When I set this goal at the beginning of the year, I thought this would be a super challenging goal. Swimming for 100 km in 2019 meant swimming for 2 km each week for 50 weeks (This means I could take 2 weeks off). I completed this goal by the end of Q3 and definitely slacked off in the last quarter. Due to all the work and personal travels, and being really sick throughout November, I only managed to swim for 5.6 km in Q4. Despite this, I am very happy to know that I swam for over 100 km in 2019.
- Go to gym at least twice each week -> Done (100%). I hit the gym at least twice a week every single week in 2019. Going to the gym was something I really enjoyed in 2019.
- Read 15 books -> Done (140%)! I didn’t read any books in Q4 but ended up reading a total of 21 books in 2019. I enjoyed reading most of these books but the top three I really enjoyed were – The Broken Ladder, Factfulness, and Educated. As a recap, the books I read are below:
- Kids, Parents, and Power Struggles: Winning for a Lifetime
- The Broken Ladder: How Inequality Affects the Way We Think, Live, and Die
- Solitude: In Pursuit of a Singular Life in a Crowded World
- The End of Absence: Reclaiming What We’ve Lost in a World of Constant Connection
- Dying. A memoir
- Factfulness: Ten Reasons We’re Wrong About the World–and Why Things Are Better Than You Think
- Raising your spirited child
- The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck: A Counterintuitive Approach to Living a Good Life
- The Transformed Mind: Reflections on Truth, Love and Happiness
- Evicted: Poverty and Profit in the American City
- Life 3.0: Being Human in the Age of Artificial Intelligence
- There There
- Educated: A Memoir
- Eight Dates: Essential Conversations for a Lifetime of Love
- Go camping 3 times -> Done (100%)! We really enjoyed going camping in the summer.
- One staycation with Mrs. T -> Done! Mrs. T and I actually went to three separate staycations in 2019 and stayed in the lovely JW Marriott Parq in Vancouver (we got upgraded to a suite all three times, nice!)
Wrap Up My 2019 Goals & Resolutions
I really enjoyed challenging myself throughout 2019 and accomplishing the goals I set out to myself. The Excel goal tracking sheet was extremely helpful and kept me very motivated. I managed to accomplished 12 out of 15 goals or 80%. On the three goals I didn’t finish, one of them was completely out of my control.
All in all, I am very happy with my 80% accomplishment. For 2020, I will challenge myself again and set some goals I want to accomplish.