My 2012 Income Goal: failed, but had a good time anyway

With only one month left at 2012, I have a pretty good idea of where I’ll stand financially when all is said and done. Instead of waiting until the bitter end, I thought I’d reveal now my income goal and how very close I came to success.

In 2012, I set out to gross $70,000

To date, I’ve brought in just over $58K of that, or about 83% of my goal. I expect to earn another $5,000-$6,000 in December, bringing my final total to $64K, or about 91% of my goal. In short, I won’t make it. But I’m cool with that.

After all, it wasn’t a BIG failure. I did pretty good.

If I hadn’t gone without a paycheque in July to accommodate a pay schedule change at work, I would have reached 95% of my goal this year . Oh well! At least that won’t be happening in 2013. The bulk of my income came from my full-time salary, with some extra income from freelance writing and this blog. Very little came from passive income, which is the main source I want to increase over the coming years.

For 2013, my personal income goal is $90,000

Originally I would have liked to set it at $100,000 but I’m not totally sure I’m at the six-figure mark just yet. I thought about setting it at $70,000 again, but my average income for the past 3 months has been about $6,000. This means that for the last little while, I’ve been living and spending like someone making $72,000 (maybe you noticed when I was buying iPhones and TVs and hanging out in Vancouver?).

Setting my goal back at $70,000 for another year is too low, because I expect my income to increase in 2013 for a few reasons:

  • I will get another raise at work.
  • I have more money invested now than I did at the beginning of 2012, which will generate more passive income for 2013.
  • I’m pretty greedy.

As for upping it another $20K for 2013, I realize that’s pretty ambitious and no, I don’t have a plan — but if I fail, hopefully I fail with distinction like I did here.

I set goals by choosing whatever seems just out of reach. 

Because if you choose something that is already within your grasp, it’s not a goal, it’s just a to-do item.

I’ll be honest, grossing $6,000+ per month is weird. It feels both like more and like less than I thought it would. I feel the perks of my income all the time, and then at other times all I feel is its limits. I worry that there isn’t a sum that I’ll live happily with, and then at other times I’m sure it’s just around the corner ($90,000?).

I’ve started assembling some spending and earning plans for 2013, but I still don’t have the personality of an ardent budgeting machine, as befits a personal finance blogger. Actually, as time passes I sort of kind of care less and less about personal finance. Don’t get me wrong, I will always love money, but as the vice-grip of debt loosens, so does the motivation to worry about every dollar that passes through my fingers.

I won’t be meticulously tracking my income in 2013 on the blog the way I did this year — it’s just too much to update every time I get paid. Same goes for Net Worth, which is failure number 2 for this year (though that one is not entirely my fault, since stocks were tanking recently).