Wednesday, April 13, 2016

2016 Goals - About D*mn Time!

I know, I know I'm a little bit late on getting these out since we're already into 2Q.  Seriously how in the world has 3 months of the year already gone by?  Better late than never right?

Our financial goals are pretty simple this year which I've alluded to in a couple posts.  The main theme for this year is to build up cash and pay down debt.

As many of you know I work in the oil field and I honestly have no idea what things are going to be looking like over the next 6-12 months.  Even if oil prices do rebound, as they've been doing recently, I'm not sure at what point we'll actually see drilling come back.  As of earlier this year there were at least 700 wells in Texas alone that were drilled not completed or "DNC".  Essentially they've been drilled, but the E&P companies are delaying fracking for a better pricing environment. There's estimates of 4,000+ wells nationwide that are DNC so my guess is that drilling will be the last thing to come back as the "fracklog" gets worked down.  So yeah, a large cash reserve is a must right now especially with a baby coming in July.

Financial Goals

  1. Build up cash reserves of 6 months of expenses
  2. Consider paying down debt with all excess cash flow after 1 is complete
  3. Optimize our spending

1 & 2 will just require time more than real focus to accomplish; however, 3 is going to take some work.  Our spending has gotten a bit out of hand, although that's largely due to our new found debt payments.  My wife and I typically handled our finances separately because it was easier for us, but now that we'll be moving to a one income household we need to really focus on expense optimization.  There's plenty of room in our budget to cut expenses and every dollar not spent can go towards goals 1 & 2.

One thing we've already done is to reduce our internet/cable which has shaved $76 per month off our spending which is a great start.  The other easy categories to cut back on will be food/restaurants and that has the added benefit of being healthier too.

Investing Goals

  1. Sit back and collect most dividends in cash and selectively reinvest if we see fit
  2. No new capital investments will be done until FG2 is complete, likely in 2017
  3. Portfolio optimization
It seems like optimization is the name of the game when it comes to our money goals for 2016.  I want to sit down and take a bigger picture look at our portfolio to determine whether some companies still deserve a spot or if they have too much or too little capital allocated to them.  I might also use proceeds from any ESPP sales for options investing or to right size some allocations within my portfolio.

So our financial/investing goals are booooorrrrrring, but necessary.  Come on dividend growth because that will be pretty much the only excitement for our investing this year.

Blog/Side Hustle Goals

  1. Generate $5k in revenue from my blog/freelance writing
  2. Brainstorm and develop other potential income streams and audience interaction methods
  3. Make the swap to Wordpress
It seems like making the swap to Wordpress has been on my goal list for several years now so I hope this doesn't fall by the wayside yet again.  If I just wanted to create a new blog then it'd be easy enough, but with about 4.5 years of content here there's no way I want to lose that.  Since it'll require a lot more time investment to get everything swapped and figured out exactly how I need it it's been very easy to just skip this goal since I have limited time at home.  However, the oil field is slow and I plan on taking one month off for family medical leave once our child is born so I want to carve out the time to actually get this done.  I'm sure it'll be a pain during the process, but it'll be well worth it in the long run.

If anyone has any tips/suggestions/recommendations please pass them along!

Personal Goals

  1. Be 165 lbs or less by the end of the year
  2. Work out a minimum of 3 times per week - walking/running, yoga, kettle bell, body weight
  3. Read at least 12 books during the year
I've already made some great progress this year with losing weight.  Since the middle of January I've lost about 20 lbs so I'm pretty happy with that.  I would much prefer to go to a gym and throw some weights around, but I have to work with what I have and that's typically my body or kettle bells.  It's harder for me to be motivated for those workouts rather than at a gym so I need to come up with a better way to motivate myself to exercise, especially when I'm at work.  

Unless something major changes that's it for my 2016 goals.  On the money side of things it's pretty much going to be another year of holding steady while looking for ways to reduce expenses and get debt paid down.  The blogging and personal goals will be the most exciting of the bunch and are the ones I'm most looking forward to for this year.  I'm currently on pace, or close enough to it, to reaching BG1 and am really looking forward to brainstorming and developing other things for the blog.  

How are you doing on your goals through the first quarter of 2016?  Are you on track with your goals or do you need to play some catch up during Q2?

Image provided by lekkyjustdoit via FreeDigitalPhotos


  1. I could help you with blog transfer to wordpress or anything similar. I have just finished my studies (Applied Informatics) and I am interested in DGI, so I will be glad to help you. Let me know at if you need anything IT related.

  2. Nice set of goal. Good luck with the success of it.

  3. Passive,
    Great goals. I don't think paying down debt is quite as boring as you might tend to think. It's just the mirror image of dividend investing. Money saved is money earned and will brighten up your personal balance sheet. How about a running goal of specific debt categories/amounts and updates on your payoff progress like I did with my Rental Payoff Blog. It kept me accountable and kept me going till I completed the goal +3 months ahead of schedule. I think your goals are both exciting and wise!

  4. Great goals. I really like building an emergency fund, followed by paying off debts with excess cash. Once these two are taken care of it will help with your investor mindset. You can then laser focus on increasing your investment portfolio.

  5. I'm on board with your approach. I didn't invest a single dime in the market (save the work 401k to get company match) until I had paid off all debt including mortgage. The sleep at night factor is worth more than the few extra points of yield...

  6. Better late than never. Thats a nice set of goals. I hope you are able to accomplish all of the goals that you have set!

  7. I like the emergency fund goal the most because it adds security and then gives you a little more flexibility to do whatever you want (like invest lots in Dividend stocks).

    Personal health is a fantastic one because there are a few tangible benefits (such as strength), but it helps confidence, self esteem, inside your body, energy levels, everything.

    Nice job so far, good luck for Q2 :)


  8. My goals are to pay down all revolving debt. Max out IRA. Save for a down payment. Continue to read for pleasure. Master the skill that will double my income. Have my LLC pay me for the first time.