2020 Goals & Resolutions – Q1 Update

Last year I started publishing my annual goals and resolutions. I then provided an update every quarter. This kept me very motivated and kept myself accountable for my goals. As a result, I met and exceeded many of the goals I set out. I decided to continue this regular update this year. At the beginning of the year, I set out some very challenging and ambitious goals for myself. Let’s see how I did after three months.

2020 Goals & Resolutions

Below is my goal tracking sheet. It’s quite simple and grouped into four categories. Some goals are yearly goals, some I want to achieve by a specific month.

Unlike last year, I’m going to give myself letter grades throughout the year to evaluate how well I’m doing with each goal. Thanks to Joe for the idea!

Financial Goals

  • Dividend income over $30,000 -> 21.7% B-. When I set out this goal in early 2020, I knew this was going to be one heck of a challenging and ambitious goal. So far after one quarter, we have received $6, 504.04. This means we are behind with this goal and I’m not sure if we would be hit this goal given the current market situation and uncertainties over some companies’ ability to continue to pay dividends. For now, we will continue to invest regularly, take advantage of dollar cost average, and work our way toward the $30,000 in annual dividend goal.
  • Dividend income/annual expense ratio 55% -> 50% B. I suppose one of the positives of COVID-19 is that we aren’t spending as much money on things like eating out and vacations. This has helped to keep our expenses down in March which increased the dividend income/annual expense ratio slightly. We are going to continue working hard to hit the 55% goal.

Blog Goals

  • Publish six high quality articles every month-> A. I have been consistently publishing six articles each month. Having this goal is keeping me motivated and is allowing me to plan ahead.
  • Speak at FinCon’20 -> WIP. I submitted my speaking session idea to the FinCon team in early March. I am not planning to submit any more ideas so fingers crossed that I’ll get picked. Anyone going to FinCon’20 looking for a panelist? I’d love to join the discussion.
  • Speak at Financial Freedom Summit-> WIP. The Financial Freedom Summit was supposed to happen May 1st to 2nd in St. Louis. Unfortunately, due to the coronavirus and social distancing, the event has been postponed till a later date. The new dates haven’t been announced yet so hopefully I will be able to make the new dates. Fingers crossed.
  • Speak at Canadian Financial Summit -> WIP. This virtual summit usually happens in September. I will have to pitch my idea to the summit organizer.
  • Record three podcasts -> B. 33% completed. I recorded The What’s Up Podcast in early January to discuss Financial Independence Retire Early (FIRE) in Canada. I need to work on appearing on two other podcasts.

Personal Goals

  • Weigh 72 kg by the end of 2020 -> C. 76 kg. I started off the year at 77.5 kg so I managed to lose 1.5 kg (3.3 lbs). Only 4 more kgs from my goals. I need to continue to stay active and watch what I eat.
  • Swim for 120 km in 2020 -> A+. 33.6 km so far. So far this year, I have been waking up around 5:15 AM regularly, so I could be in the pool by around 6:20 AM. I managed to push myself so far this year by swimming for longer distances, usually around 3 km each session. Typically, by the end of the swim session, I would be totally exhausted! Due to COVID-19, local pools have been closed indefinitely, so I haven’t been swimming for the last number of weeks. Hopefully, the virus situation improves so the pools would open and I can add to my distance.
  • Go to the gym at least twice each week -> A. I managed to hit the gym at least twice each week. Now I have been working from home, it is harder to maintain my workout schedule though.
  • Spend 60 minutes each week learning Danish on Duolingo -> A. I have been consistently practising Danish each week. I am starting to picking up more words whenever Mrs. T and the kids are speaking Danish. Danish can get quite confusing but it helps to have a native Danish speaker to answer grammatical questions (sometimes Mrs. T couldn’t explain the rules though, like why it’s et æbleand not en æble).
  • Complete Conscious Parenting course -> Complete. I completed the Conscious Parenting course in February. The course provided some excellent parenting tools that have been extremely helpful. If you are a parent, I recommend taking the course.
  • Read 15 books -> A+ 26.7%. I finished reading four books in the last three months. The four books I read were:
    • How to Do Nothing: Resisting the Attention Economy. A very thoughtful book by Jenny Odell. Maybe it’s just me but I found the writing style very academic so it wasn’t as enjoyable reading the book.
    • Range: Why Generalists Triumph in a Specialized World. This was a very interesting book where the author David J. Epstein presented evidence why being a generalist (or jack of all trades) is better in today’s world. Given during university I took courses in physics, mathematics, electrical engineering, mechanical engineering, and business, the message in the book definitely resonates with me.
    • Rejection Proof: How I Beat Fear and Became Invincible Through 100 Days of Rejection. Jia Jiang was the keynote speaker at a recent work summit. I thoroughly enjoyed his presentation and was fascinated by his story. Jia Jiang went through 100 Days of Rejection and learned a lot about himself and what rejection means. After his keynote, Mrs. T and I borrowed the book and read it out loud together. It was a fantastic book and I’d highly recommend it.
    • Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind. Although the book was quite long (over 400 pages), I actually really enjoyed reading it, especially about the early history of humankind. I had no idea there were other Sapiens races. If you’re curious about how we end up where we are today, you should read this book.

Fun Goals

  • Go skiing with kids at least once -> Complete. We took the kids skiing three times this year. Both Mrs. T and I were amazed at how quickly both kids picked up skiing. By the middle of the first day, both kids were zipping down the bunny slope without much help. We were planning to go skiing more but due to COVID-19, all the local mountains are closed. Until next year I guess.
  • Visit Banff & Jasper -> WIP. We have made camping reservations to visit Banff & Jasper in the summer. Given that National Parks are closed indefinitely, hopefully the closures will be lifted by then.

Q1 2020 Wrap Up

With one quarter in the books, I have finished two of my goals. I am also making great progress on many of my goals. The two financial goals, which were both very challenging and ambitious, will require more work. Overall, I am pleased with my progress so far this year. If we have to continue to stay home due to COVID-19, this will create some challenges hitting some of the goals I’ve set out for myself.

Dear readers, have you been keeping up with your 2020 goals and resolutions?

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6 thoughts on “2020 Goals & Resolutions – Q1 Update”

  1. Excellent update on Q1 Bob! Your detail and organization with this is inspiring. I hear you on the uncertainty of upcoming dividends, but those Canadian banks look tempting- might increase the stake in my BNS position with the declines.

    Good luck and keep it going!


  2. Tawcan –

    Solid Q1, I would say was fairly successful for you. You are controlling what you can – investing, learning with the books and language, controlling costs, etc.. Your dividends will be firing on all cylinders, once all of the companies get through this difficult time. Keep doing what you’re doing, results will continue to follow.



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