Today is January 15, which means we’re half way through the first month of 2017. This is the perfect time to reevaluate our goals for and manage how we’re doing.
Sometimes life can be so overwhelming that we get so involved with the day-to-day events and forget about the bigger picture. It’s good to take time to review the month’s trajectory, and make any changes to future plans to accommodate for the bigger picture. So, since it’s the middle of the month, I propose we all take a step back and look at what we’ve already accomplished, and then recalibrate our direction for the future.
Looking Back, Planning Forward
So far this month, I’ve:
- Bought my domain
- Read Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban
- Read Jay’s Journal
- Started my editorial calendar for my blog
While it doesn’t sound like a big deal—and it probably isn’t since it doesn’t actually change anything to my blog’s content—buying my domain meant a great deal to me.
This website is the story of my life, and everything that I find myself having an affinity towards, such as running, nutrition, technology, and philosophy. Spending $26 to remove the “.wordpress” extension from my domain title did more than just change my web address, it solidified me as a blogger—I am totally official. Buying the domain has given me a great sense of satisfaction and self-affirmation that shows I’m invested in my own creativity and endeavors. This could have easily been one of the best $26 I’ve spent so far this year.
In addition to financially investing in my blog, I created an editorial calendar to help me organize my upcoming posts and put things into perspective. It helps to keep me accountable for blog ideas I’ve come up with and stay on track. Creating an EC gives me greater consistency and improved reliability, as well as helps to relieve the pressure of needing to come up with ideas day to day. Having a cache of ideas I can write from relieves brainpower to process those ideas. I’m using the skills I learned as a Sports Editor and as a SEO Content Writer to build my blog. Very cool.
Evaluating My Week
While I’ve accomplished a couple nice things, looking back over the week and evaluating the current state of my wellbeing, I do have a few adjustments to my goals to ensure I accommodate my overall health.
I overexerted myself bench-pressing weights, then I aggravated it even further by playing basketball. I either failed to perform the exercise correctly or I’m still not completely healed—either way, I’m injured. My shoulders hurt when I move my neck, causing me to turn like Frankenstein’s monster every time I want to look over my shoulder. This sets me back with my weightlifting goals, but I think it’s a sign to slow down and work on mobility.
The plan for this week is to take a break from lifting weights and focus on cardio, mobility, and high intensity interval training (HIIT). Complete fitness involves strength, stability, and mobility; and, I’m taking this is a sign that I’ve been ignoring the latter two. This week, I’ll only be jumping rope, sprinting, and performing extended stretches or yoga to recover from my injuries.
On the other hand—on a positive note—I cooked my first vegan soup yesterday. It turned out better than I thought. I’ll cook it again later this week since I have tons of left over ingredients, so I’ll take photos and publish an article with the recipe and my experience with cooking that dish. This was my first step to becoming my own vegan chef. I dig it.
It’s been two weeks so far in 2017, and I’ve already spent nearly $500, and that’s not including my student loan. That’s not good.
This week, I spent $25.65 on coffee and drinks, more than my budget of less than $20 per week. At this pace, I’m looking at spending $1,333.80 on coffee and drinks alone this year—not good. My coffee purchases could take up to 6% of my income if I’m not careful. That may not seem like a lot, but Benjamin Franklin once said, “A small leak will sink a great ship.” If instead of spending that money on designer coffee, I invested it into an appreciating stock, I would gather a return on my investment rather than take a hit to my overall wealth. Cutting out lattes can be looked at as similar to cutting off cigarettes. While it taste good in the moment, it creates a dependency that I could probably be better without, and I’d be doing myself a financial favor by quitting. I need to quit buying designer coffees as frequently as I do and stretch my dollars further.
I spent $89.56 on groceries, which is a little high for the week, but I can justify my purchase. My expenses were fairly high this week because I bought several dry goods I’ll eat over the course of the month, which includes steel-cut oatmeal, cereal, lentils, pearled barley, and B12 vitamins. Next week should see a decrease in grocery expenses since I’ll only buy mostly produce for the upcoming week.
I spent $31.36 on lunch this week, which is on the pricier side. If I had instead packed my lunch, over the course of the year I could potentially save an additional $500 – $1,000, which I could spend on better equipment or invest in appreciating equity.
My goal for this week is to spend less than $100, which includes money spent on gas, groceries, lunch, and all my other personal expenses. For me, it’s tougher than it sounds. I’m a spendthrift.
Establishing my blog took a little longer than I expected, but I want my blog to truly reflect my interest without much fluff. I’ve solidified my schedule enough to know what to expect in upcoming weeks, allowing me the leisure to plan to produce content every Wednesday and Sunday and still have time to take care of myself. So, fellow bloggers and readers, y’all can expect me to be here writing about my life, travels, and everything in between consistently and with great care.
This week, I’m reading Harry Potter 4, which I’m hoping to finish by the end of the week. It’s definitely a lot longer than a lot of the books I’ve been reading lately, but it’s not a complicated read—the only thing with reading this book is dedicating my time to accomplish the reading. I can do it. I just need to focus.
Taking time in the middle of the month to reevaluate short-term goals helps to look at the bigger picture and make sure we’re still working towards accomplishing those long-term goals that will truly get us into the mind state of living happily and doing the things we want every day.