08 March 2007

New Years Resolutions Revisited - How YOU Doin'?

We are about ten weeks into the new year, or about one-fifth of the way through, depending on how you look at it. Remember the New Year's resolutions you made back on January 1 - hopefully in a reasonably sober state? I do. I posted them here (note to self: dumb thing to do). I guess ten weeks is as good a marking point as any to do the first check-up.

#1 - I resolve to take more days off from work in 2007. Hmmm...this is not going as well as I'd hoped, but it is not a complete failure, either. So far, I have used zero vacation or sick days this year - and along the way, I have accumulated more. But, I used my one personal day and the comp day that I earned for working a weekend when we hosted a tour for guidance counselors. Those days were used on my previously mentioned Houston/Austin, TX trip. I also took some partial days off to go and watch our school's basketball teams play some road games. Unfortunately, it is the second week of spring training, the ACC Tournament is going on right now nearby, and our women's basketball team is playing in a regional tournament this week, too. Me, I will be at work. :-( This needs work. Perhaps after I do my taxes, I will start planning summer vacation.

#2 - I resolve to blog more often in 2007. This one is, for now, a win. I am ahead of my pace from last year, and I have been submitting articles to blog carnivals to drive more traffic. I even started my own - the Carnival of Dining Out, which has had two successful issues, so far. I have also begun the work on a new online project that I hope to launch soon. When this happens, I will have to consider this one in the win column.

#3 - I resolve to further reduce my outstanding debt in 2007. The only additional payments that I have made so far have been an additional $50/month on my condo mortgage. I have been earmarking some additional money to pay down my student loans, but I haven't made the payment yet. Also, I have been using part of my travel reimbursement checks to pay down student loans. To date, I have not had any work travel, but expect some coming up in the next few months. I don't know if I am willing to consider $100 of extra principal paid on my mortgage as a true win here, but it is no worse than a push.

#4 - I resolve to make more money in 2007. Kind of like the mortgage payments, the only additional money that I have made when comparing this year to last is the simple change in my salary from one year to the next. Money earned from blogging (actually in my pocket) is zero, but there has been an increase in my AdSense account, and I will hopefully cash a check from them in the near future. If my new online venture hits, there will also likely be a small revenue stream there, too. I have yet to sell anything on eBay, or anywhere else. My latest obsession is covered call options in the stock market. If anything pans out in that direction, I will post some details. I have also been floating a few bucks into Prosper - mostly for giggles - but, I am earning a return of 13.6%, so far, on a small investment. I was willing to call the previous resolution as "no worse than a push," but this one will have to be labeled as "a push, at best." Still, I think things are heading in the right direction.

#5 - I resolve to live a healthier lifestyle in 2007. I knew this would be the toughest one. Let's see - I have eaten more at home - or homemade foods at work for lunch. This has had the side benefit of being frugal, too. Unfortunately, when I cook for myself, one of the things that goes out the window is portion size. Last month, I made a conscious decision to cut out fast food of any kind - I called it "no food that is delivered to you in your car, through a window." I was pretty successful - only two window trips, and one was almost unavoidable. I had no Chick-fil-a, which I do enjoy - and no morning stops for Dunkin' Donuts (medium coffee and two donuts - more than $3!) - so that helped eliminate some of my own "latte factor." Now I need to cut out Publix chicken tenders, and I will really be on the right track. I still lacked in the exercise department. I played tennis once - which is once more than I had played in the previous ten weeks. Net result - no weight gain, but no weight loss. Again, this looks like a "push-minus."

I think that was a pretty objective view of the situation. All in all, I would give myself a grade of C. There is significant room for improvement, but I do think that I am on the right track. So, how did you all do??? Come clean. No one's keeping score.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Travelin' Man - come join me on the dark side (of carbs at least)! It seems to work, but I'll find out on Monday, I guess!
Since I didnt publicly post my New Years Resolutions, I can say mine are all on track! HAHA
Great posts, and let me say, the writing is phenomenal!