I can’t believe the first month of 2016 is almost over. I’ve officially been at my job for two months now, which is wild.
I had a conversation with a friend of mine recently in which she told me that when she thinks about her job, she’s surprised and grateful that they pay her to do something that she both enjoys and that comes so easily to her. I feel the same way – I feel remarkably lucky (blessed, if you’re a Southerner like me) to have found a field I love so early in my career. This my third job out of college now working in the field of my choice, and I still love every day.
Don’t get me wrong – everyone has frustrating days at work. It’s just that my job is perfect for me, so even when I have a frustrating day, I know the next day will be better. I’ve also been remarkably lucky in terms of the bosses I’ve had. NewBoss (how long will I get to call him that?) continues to be a peaceful and even-keeled leader whose sense of humor I continue to enjoy. My previous boss was phenomenal beyond words. Her impact on my career is something I will be grateful for until the end of time.
My themes for 2016 are gratitude and money, and everything seems to be aligning nicely along those lines.
1. Pay off Credit One card – achieved 1/16/16
ACHIEVED – Woohoo!
2. Pay off Discover card
ON HOLD – No monster payments on this one yet, as I’ve been debating paying off another, smaller card first. I’ll decide after I do our taxes.
3. One kid date with each kiddo per week
FAIL – Eeek. This commute is killing us, and side-hustling on the weekends, while contributing greatly to my other goals and mental health, isn’t helping this goal along. I may need to scale back to one kid date/kid/month, realistically, since I define a ‘kid date’ as one-on-one time. Alternately, I could loosen my definition and could count taking the kids to the park, or family movie times. Since the goal was intended to create mindful one-on-one time, I think I’ll stick with that, and just readjust the monthly amount.
4. Clean one thing every day
PROGRESS – Ok, so this is technically a fail, but I’m counting it as a halfway success as I’m contributing more to the household cleaning tasks than I previously was. I will continue to strive towards this as I continue to think this is a reasonable goal.
5. Eat a green thing every day
FAIL – This is embarrassing, but most days I just don’t eat green things. I think I need to start eating veggies with breakfast just to get this over with. Most days I find it easy enough to work in something green at lunchtime, but by dinnertime I just want to curl up with carbs. Note: I’m not saying that’s a healthy way of living my life, but I am trying to teach myself baby steps, since I tend to be an all-or-nothing sort.
6. Get 20 minutes of movement in every day
PROGRESS – This was going SUPER WELL… Up until a week ago, when it appears that I may have broken my foot. I have to get an xray/bone scan/MRI this week to be sure (because I’m stubborn AF and dislike going to the doctor, not to mention that it tends to be costly), as my swollen ouchy foot will not let me put it off any longer. Also, our entire family has been sick this past week (colds and pink eye), so instead of pushing it and trying to do some sort of upper-body exercise or even stretching, I’ve been resting.
Logic says that resting is a smart move right now, but I can’t help but feel like I’m failing myself by not making an effort to do SOMETHING.
7. Take 4 friend trips
8. Get a tattoo
9. Have 10 friend dates this year
PASS – Had lunch with a buddy, and went to see a comedy show with hubby and some friends of ours. 2/10 of the way there!
10. Earn 100% of my Q1 bonus
PROGRESS – Half of my bonus is based on a customer acquisition goal, which is coming along nicely. The other half is based on my personal projects, which are also coming along nicely. However, I’m going to have to kick it into high gear on February to make sure I’m on track, as my goal was to hit 50% of my metrics by the end of January, which I missed.
I’ll keep my metrics anonymized, but here’s how much I’ve achieved:
Part 1 of Personal:
- Part 1a – 101.7% of January goal, 35.55% of Q1 goal
- Part 1b – 60% of January goal, 20% of Q1 goal
- Part 1c – 60% of January goal, 20% of Q1 goal
I don’t control the ad budgets that drive a lot of this, and we hit a snag when NewBoss and I didn’t receive notifications that a 1b ad was rejected. As soon as the ad was revised and approved, we were back on track, but missed nearly a whole week of promotion.
1c is just growing way slower than we anticipated. As a startup, we don’t have any historical data, so we’re learning as we go. My goal was to grow all three channels by an equal number, which didn’t account for differences in acquisition speed or cost. I’m hoping that NewBoss and I can adjust our spending and ads to accelerate 1b to make up for the week we lost, and to speed up acquisition on 1c.
Part 2 of Personal:
- ~25% complete, January goal was to complete ~50%. However, we’ve got a lot in the hopper for this one for February, which will hopefully accelerate things back in my favor.
Another benefit is that we’ve hired another person whose job will be to optimize programs, which will allow me to focus more on the core parts of my job and speed up Part 2 production. I think he’ll also be able to help us optimize all of our Part 1 stuff, but at the same time, he’s brand new, so I don’t want to drop everything on him at once.
In Other Huge News
I landed my first freelance gig! While my FreeBoss will eventually need someone to do this job full-time, I’ll be able to help her out with a few projects in the meantime. I have no idea how long this gig will last, but her company is supercool and I’m very excited about the work I’ll be doing for them, so yay! Side hustle for the win!
I’m planning on using my side hustle income to pay down debt, as well as fund a new laptop, as working on my main job’s computer for side hustle stuff is uncool, and I just found out today that my home laptop, which is 5 years old, is on the path for a rapid and painful death.
I’ve also been putting off a couple of major expenses that I can’t put off any longer. I need 2 new tires, so I’m getting a quote for that.
We have saved a fair bit of money this past month, so I may purchase the laptop sooner rather than later and just work some extra hours to refill the emergency fund, but a lot of that depends on what our tax situation looks like. Last year we owed a fortune, and I’m hoping we adjusted adequately not to have that same situation again. – sigh-
A great month! I look forward to finalizing plans after doing our taxes. How was your January? Is 2016 treating you well?