I’ve been a little behind on updating my 2011 goals lately. Let me just say, I didn’t hit the marks I had aimed for; those “pie in the sky” ones that I knew were a reach. However, it’s not a total wash. Let’s recap:

  • Financial Goal: Save $9,000 this year. Result: Saved $3,600. Ouch.
  • Budgeting Goal: use pre-paid, finite gift cards for everyday purchases and cash for the “extras”. Result: My Starbucks gift card idea worked out pretty well and kept me within a reasonable budget. Cash just didn’t work out so well for me and neither did a pre-paid gift card for the “extras.”
  • Fitness Goal: Bike 1,000 miles this year. Result: I’m currently at 550 miles.

I noticed that one of the problems with my original goals were they weren’t very realistic. For example, I knew that from August to December, I wouldn’t be working due to finishing up my education. That alone took a big bite out of the savings goal for me. No income = no savings. I also based my fitness goal on the miles I rode the very first year I purchased my bike; I was excited to ride every where back then. Now, it’s still fun to ride to Starbucks and back, but I’m just not as motivated.

I was recently reading LaTisha’s post about SMART goals and realize that I need to incorporate some of this “SMARTness” into my goal setting for 2012. For example, I had a specific figure for my savings goal, but it wasn’t attainable given the circumstances for this year. Same thing happened with my budget; I analyzed my Quickbooks reports and noticed that every month we were spending much more on food that what I had budgeted. I need to really use my Quickbooks to set a budget rather than pulling numbers from thin air. With 2012 nearing at an alarmingly fast pace, I need to reevaluate my goals and make sure they truly are SMART.

Have you analyzed your goals this year? Do you have a plan for 2012?


  1. Well Heeled Blog Reply

    I did well on my financial goals and travel goals in 2011, but I’m afraid I’ve fallen behind on my blogging and exercise goals. Ooops! I agree, it’s important to be realistic in goal-setting – I prefer doing realistic + 5% or 10% stretch. You don’t want goals to be too easy, but if they are wholly unrealistic I think they lose the power to motivation.

    Here’s a good 2012!

  2. The only goal I have right now is paying off my debts and so far it’s been really good. I managed to pay off my car finally 😀

    • @Aaron – That’s a great goal. I’m working on that as well. I think my goals sort of changed through the year and I started focusing on paying off a couple of remaining debts. I need to reevaluate for 2012.

  3. You need to monitor yourprogress to your goals weekly and monthly. If you do, you realize pretty quickly that your goals are unrealistic. I started thinking about 2012, but I am still working on 2011.

    • @Krantcents – That’s a good point. If I monitor on a shorter basis, I might be able to tweak them to make the goals more realistic. I’m just hoping there are teaching jobs available next fall. 😉

  4. I haven’t really started looking at 2012 goals yet and didn’t make any significant goals for 2011. I will try to think about 2012 over the next month or so and see what I can develop using the SMART criteria.

  5. Barb Friedberg Reply

    I like your point about remaining reasonable in goal setting. I certainly understand as I review our 2011 budget and realize we took a few months off from work as we moved across the country.

  6. I have analyzed my goals for 2012 and they are very aggressive. but, SMART and achievable granted I do not get fired or something odd like that. I just wish I can fast forward to 2013 to see how life will be after I complete my 2012 goals.

  7. Miss T @ Prairie Eco-Thrifter Reply

    We didn’t make all of our goals this year either but we have made some progress which to me is the important thing. It means we have been making an effort. I am hoping to do better next year.

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