I’ve been hemming and hawing over writing a 2013 goals post primarily because 2012 was such a complete loss– at least when it comes to my finances. My only glimmer of success was my biking goal; I did end up averaging 80 miles a month. My blogging goal was tepid, if I can even call it that. Using my JetPack stats, the numbers look good on a bar graph, but I’m pretty sure it measures page views and not unique visitors which means it’s tricking me into thinking I’m doing better than I actually am.

Which brings me to 2013; how can I set goals that I can actually accomplish, measure and still make sure they’re meaningful?

My finances are tricky; my income fluctuates from one year to the next making it challenging to set a budget. However, I know what the minimum is that I need to bring in to pay all the bills and have a teeny, tiny bit left to set aside for savings. Using the zero-balance method that I’m trying out this year, I should be able to save my regular up-front amount, boost it by $50, and then save whatever’s left at the end of the month. It’s not a great strategy, but it will have to do for now. So, as a modest and possibly attainable goal, I’m predicting on saving $2,400 in an ER fund and an additional $2,700 in long term savings this year. Making adjustments throughout the year should also make attaining this goal a real possibility.

Blogging is my hobby. I do it because I enjoy doing it. If I can’t post 3 times a week on this site (because I’m also posting on Bike Lane Living), well that’s just the way it goes. It’s turned into a nice little side income. If I can increase this income stream this year, that’s great. Notice I’m not really making this an actual “goal” because I have other things on my plate.

Since biking has become a habit for me, I don’t need to set a goal for it. Instead, my personal goal this year is to learn how to cook 3 dishes for dinner (okay, so this wasn’t my idea but Mr. LH is really tired of being the sole cook around here.) Ideas are welcome, especially if they are easy to prepare and simple enough to follow for those of us who are a disaster in the kitchen.

I’m trying to change my thinking; instead of a laundry list of things I want to accomplish this year, I really want to focus on what I’m actually accomplishing and take it up a notch.

What goals have you set for yourself? Do you have a recipe to share?