Well, with the year nearly one quarter over already, I thought it was as good a time as any to go back over all the resolutions I made at the start of the year and see how good a job I’ve done meeting my goals. (It’s hard to believe that 2011 is nearly one quarter over already, isn’t it? Maybe it’s just a sign that I’m getting older, and that each year represents a smaller portion of my total life (or that when I spend 10 to 12 hours each weekday in classrooms or the lab, it consumes a great deal of my time and focus), but I’ll be hanged if it doesn’t seem like each year has less time available than the preceding years.) If I don’t hold myself responsible for getting things done, after all, who will?
With that in mind, here are the goals I set for myself at the beginning of the year, how I’m doing on getting each one done, and the grade I’d give myself based on my progress so far. The goal is to help motivate myself to get my rump in gear, improve in the areas where I need to improve, and keep up the good work where I’m doing well. So, here we go:
Roger’s Resolution Rundown
Resolution #1: Write At Least One Post Per Day
Comments: Well, I’m doing at least half that. I’ve been keeping a running To-Do list for my blogging, and my post writing needs to catch up from late February. Still, I’ve gotten about three or four posts written each week, which is not a bad start. With some work, I should be able to get that up to five, six, or more posts on a weekly basis, which would definitely let me meet most of my other blogging goals. (Such as having a backlog so I’m not too stressed on weeks like this when I have tests and other tasks on top of blogging.)
Grade: C: Definitely room for improvement, but pretty solid progress thus far.
Resolution #2: Write At Least One Guest Post Per Week
Comments: Well, here I definitely need some work; I’ve written about two guest posts, over the course of the twelve or so weeks since the year began. If I were grading a student’s paper in one of my labs that had that sort of answer ratio, it’d be an F, for certain.
Grade: F: Well, I can hardly hold myself to a lower standard than I would apply to others, after all. I’ll have to do much, much better in this particular aspect of my blogging, starting with more posts on the Yakezie website.
Resolution #3: Promote My Blog In More Places
Comments: I haven’t done too much in this area, in no small part due to lack of time (in turn due to poor time management, on my part). But, besides those guest posts mentioned above, I have been participating in some surveys and other personal finance events. I just need to do more of that, to say nothing of commenting more on other blogs.
Grade: D+ : I am slowly increasing my efforts in this area, but there’s still a long way to go, and I have quite a climb to get there
Resolutions #4 & #5: Read At Least 50 Blog Posts Per Day & Comment On 10 of Them
Comments: More than anything else in the blogging sphere, here is something I’ve been falling behind on, and want to improve. I should have left over 900 comments thus far to stay up with my resolution, and I’ve left less than 100. I most definitely need to catch up on all the great blogs out there, and leave plenty of comments to encourage my fellow bloggers.
Grade: F : Once again, there’s plenty of work that needs to be done, and hopefully the fear of getting an F (even a self-inflicted F) will help to spur this A and B student to get on the ball and comment a great deal more.
Resolution #6: Pay Down My Credit Card Balances
Comments: A mixed bag here. On one hand, my credit card balance has gone up since I first made this resolution, in spite of my best efforts to pay it down. On the other hand, much of that added expense was one time expenses (mostly car related) that should decrease through the rest of the year, and I’ve recently made an effort to stop credit card spending entirely. Hopefully, when I do a 2nd Quarter look back at my resolutions, I’ll have a lower card balance to report.
Grade: D+ : There’s quite a lot of progress that still needs to be made, but I’m pretty proud of where I stand and where I intend to go from here. With any luck, I’ll have my card paid off (or at least, greatly paid down) by the end of the year.
Resolution #7: Create at Least Three More Sources of Income
Comments: Well, I’ve been focusing much more on getting my blog to be even more productive and turning it into a more important source of income for me. That said, I have been trying to spread my wings and add more sources of income, although how productive they are remains to be seen.
Grade: C : I’ll call this a C; I definitely need to put more effort into alternate income sources, but I think I’m doing pretty well thus far.
Resolution #8: Generate At Least $1000 Per Month in Alternate Income
Comments: While we’re on the subject of alternate income, I did set a goal of making $1000 per month from sources other than my grad student paycheck. I’m far from that point, as you can see from the alternative income I’ve been listing in my monthly net worth updates. But then, it’s only the first quarter of the year; this is the sort of resolution that can take a whole year to achieve.
Grade: B- : Well, I do have a long way to go, but I am making progress, if slow progress, towards this goal, so let’s go with a moderately high grade for this goal.
Resolution #9: Go to the Gym At Least Twice a Week
Comments: Ah, finally something I’m actually doing halfway well on. I have been going to the gym and getting some exercise. I do think I’ve missed a few of my twice weekly sessions (particularly back during the winter, when the last thing I wanted to do was go out into the cold and snow), but all in all, I’ve done pretty well with this.
Grade: B : As mentioned, there is room for improvement, but I’m not doing half bad here. Definitely glad that some things are going according to plan.
Resolution #10: Reconnect with My Old High School and College Friends
Comments: Here’s where I’m really shining. I’ve reconnected with more than a few people from my college, and have been talking with high school class mates. In fact, I’ve been helping to plan an impromptu class reunion for my high school class (we graduated in 2001, but there hasn’t been a formal reunion planned or anything). All in all, I’m almost more social now than I was back in high school.
Grade: A : I think I can give myself an A here without being disingenuous. If I can keep up the connections, I should have a pretty solid group of old friends I can keep up with in the future.
Overall: D+ There’s definitely quite a lot of room for improvement (particularly when it comes to my blogging), but I’m making some progress, and will just have to keep up the hard work.