It’s that time of the year again. My news reader has been absolutely stuffed with 2007 resolutions posts. So why not join the mob and add mine to the fire. In no particular order, here are a few of the things I would like to achieve in 2007:
- Most of my day is spent sitting on my backside behind a desk, with the heaviest thing I lift being an especially thick folder or two. So first things first, I plan to increase the distance I bike – actual on-the-road biking miles plus those picked up on our trainer (one of the best purchase we’ve ever made) – for the year by at least 10%. I’ve been using WeEndure to track my distance since the end of May, so I’ll just guesstimate from the distance recorded since then and say that I hit somewhere around 1,430 miles this year. Let’s call this goal 1,575 miles then, shall we?
- Along that same line, I’d like to add some variation to my exercise regime. I thought it might be good to go get a manual push mower to mow our 3 acres of lawn, but then realized I don’t have nearly enough life insurance to do that during a Nebraska summer, as it’d certainly be the death of me! Actually, I was considering using a bit of my bonus and getting us a home gym now that we have the room for it. I’ll have to do some more research on them, and decide whether it’s more important to throw the entire bonus at our debts or get something that is not absolutely needed but that would almost certainly increase our overall physical well-being.
- Find a new secondary income source or two. The last few years, I’ve made a little side money doing some basic computer tech – ala virus/spyware cleanup, building a new computer now and then, upgrading memory/hard drives/etc., that sort of thing. It worked nicely, especially outside of tax season when my time is a little more in supply. This year, it looks like I’ll clear just over $7,500. Decent chunk of change, but just one problem: I’ve come to the realization that I just don’t like doing it anymore. Some days, I flat out hate doing it (some days, it’s the tedium of doing the same fix I’ve done 400 times; some days, it’s a PITA client; some days, I just don’t care). Life is too short to do something you hate, but I do like that extra bit o’ money (and would like to see that amount of extra cash grow substantially if I could). So a big goal – maybe even my primary goal for the year – is to do a little soul searching, find some alternative sources that I enjoy and just quit doing the tech I’ve been doing. I’ve got an idea or 10, but I’ve got to flesh them out a bit more in order to see whether they’re actually doable. To give this goal something that can actually be measured, I’ll set a goal of $10,000 in secondary income.
- How about something a little less esoteric? I want to pay off a big chunk of debt. Let’s pick an arbitrary number and say $20,000. Why so arbitrary? I don’t even know how much debt we are in right now – half of our contractors haven’t bothered to send a final bill yet. I find it hard to do any solid planning for debt reduction when I don’t know the total being reduced.
- Either dispose of, or rent out, our gifted property. At the local rate of around $115/acre (I just received an offer of that), those acres should bring in about $2,300 (minus whatever property tax gets assessed against it). Not many sales in the local area that I can find, but in comparable areas it looks like land has been going for between $2,000 to $2,500 an acre. I’m leaning towards renting right now (otherwise I’d have to wrap up that line of credit taken out against it), but I’m going to get a local land broker to give me an estimate anyway. If I do sell the land, that last goal of $20,000 debt reduction is in addition to any proceeds I’d receive from the sale.
- Read more books, and watch less TV. This year, I’ve read 22 books. Not terrible, but really not that great either – I’m going to bump that up to at least 36 books (a nice, round 3 books a month – sounds simple enough, but we’ll see). As for TV, getting rid of the thing entirely would probably be a wonderful thing, but a little mindless escapism can’t be that harmful. No hard & fast goal here; I just want to be mindful of the time I waste in front of the boob tube.
- Blog more, think less. Not every post has to be a 1,000 word+ treatise. There’s a reason I post so infrequently. And it’s mostly because I tweak everything several times. Set it aside for awhile. Come back and tweak some more. Realize the topic’s been covered on some other site. Delete the post. Wonder why my readership levels are going nowhere… So, just post already.
That should keep me busy through January, at least…