Now that I have provided my goals for 2020 and that the year is coming to a close in just a few days at the time of writing this post, I'll be examining the goals that I had for 2019 and whether I was able to accomplish each of them.
My financial goals for 2019 were as follows:
1. Collecting $550+ in dividends
2. Ending with $600+ in forward annual dividends
3. Amassing $15,000 in investments
4. Buying a used compact car in cash (i.e. Chevrolet Cruze)
Starting with the first goal of collecting $550+ in dividends for the year, I managed to collect $615.30 in dividends during 2019. This will be reflected on the dividend income page once I post my dividend income for December 2019 next week.
I was easily able to achieve this goal as a result of the $5,976.95 in capital invested in my taxable accounts and the $2,914.07 invested in my retirement account all the while paying tuition for the first 7 months of the year.
Although I invested like there was no tomorrow, this did come at the cost of one financial goal as we'll get into a bit later.
I am also poised to end 2019 with forward annual dividends of $873.51 as a result of the significant investments made in 2019 and the dividend increases announced during the year, which was something I couldn't imagine in even my wildest dreams.
On the investment goal front, I was able to amass $20,700 in investments as of December 30th. This represents a doubling of the $10,000 that I entered the year with, which is well beyond what I was expecting.
Unsurprisingly, it comes as a result of both a great year in the stock market and my capital deployment during the year.
Rounding out my financial goals for the year, I intended to purchase a used compact car to fix up in 2020.
While my father and I haven't been able to find a car for purchase yet, I am pleased to share that I have the capital necessary to make such a purchase.
This was the only financial goal that it could be argued I didn't technically achieve, but that could change at any point in the next few weeks now that I have the capital for us to start seriously browsing for cars.
Moving to my personal development goals for 2019, they were as follows:
1. Continue to publish at least one blog post each week
2. Publish at least 50 articles on Seeking Alpha
3. Secure an entry level accounting/finance position
Starting with the goal of publishing at least one blog post each week, I did the absolute minimum on this front to achieve the goal as this post is the 52nd of the year.
Overall, I feel that publishing once a week on my personal blog is adequate for me to document my journey to financial independence for myself and others. I could write more frequently, but I suspect that this would lead to burnout and cause me to despise the blog.
As far as writing for Seeking Alpha is concerned, I managed to publish 83 articles this year (possibly 84 or 85 if the ones that I am currently working on and will have finished by December 29th are published on New Years Eve).
Starting in May, I began to regularly write 2 articles each week, which really helped up the article count in a hurry.
I also believe that 2 articles a week on a fairly regular basis represents an optimal workload for me going forward. Any more than 2 a week would be too overwhelming given that I write for this blog, work 40+ hours a week at my day job/commute 2 hours a week, exercise regularly, and have a couple other side hustles going on.
Rounding out my personal development goals for the year was my goal to secure an entry level accounting and finance position.
Fortunately, I was able to do so and I have split my job responsibilities between accounting responsibilities and my responsibilities as a medical summarist at the Social Security Disability and Work Comp law firm that I work at.
Just as I had predicted, my day job pay increased significantly from around $28k annually with benefits included to $35k once I assumed my new responsibilities with the company this past June.
Given that I live in a relatively small and stagnant town in the Midwest, I believe this is a pretty decent starting wage for the first job relating to my major out of college. It was exactly what I expected and slightly below the $38k that I invested to receive my 4 year accounting degree.
In retrospect, maybe I set a few of my goals too low given that I actually accomplished the majority of them several months ago. Going forward, I am going to set my goals much higher and account for the fact that I sometimes tend to be too conservative in setting goals. If I need to readjust the goals that I set for 2020 lower at some point during this year as they do seem a bit lofty, I will post an update with my updated goals.
Overall, 2019 was a year filled with accomplishments that I able to hang my hat on as I really begin to embark on my journey in life.
I'm especially looking forward to enjoying the grind of next year and trying to accomplish my lofty goals while I also look to maintain a healthy work life balance.
Although most of us still have a few more hours to go before the year is over in our respective time zones as this is published, how was your 2019? Were you able to accomplish all of your goals for the year?
Thanks for reading and I look forward to replying to any comments that you are welcome to leave in the comment section below. Let's all keep hustling and have a great 2020!