At the start of 2020, I wrote a post about the goals I’d like to accomplish for 2020. We can all probably agree that goals set in January 2020 are a little ridiculous to look at now. However, I think there’s some value to it. It will help me analyze how to structure 2021 goals going forward.
Due to COVID I’m going to be grading myself very leniently. A lot of people had things more difficult than I did. That said, I couldn’t move forward on some of these while teaching kindergarten and first grade at the same time. It’s also been harder to settle down and write. I sometimes went off to the library and could focus on work exclusively. My wife is home in Zoom meetings most of the day now, and I just can’t maintain the same focus.
I had a pile of website goals. Let’s see how they went:
This task was to review my old articles and refresh them, make them relevant and useful. Search engines like that. They aren’t big fans of the historical context of how I felt in 2008 when the economy was collapsing. I did a little of this, but not nearly as much as I had hoped. I still have a about 95% of the website to go. This is an ongoing project that will probably take years. It only makes sense that updating nearly 15 years of articles while writing new articles is going to take years.
I did a little bit more on Facebook, but not much else. I still spend most of my time on Twitter, but haven’t grown much from my 6,500 followers. I’m realizing that I don’t know how to get more Twitter followers. I think most people are comfortable with the people they follow now. I should have put more time into learning Pinterest.
Other Website Stuff
I didn’t improve the design like I had hoped. I did reach out to collaborate with a few bloggers, but I needed to follow through more. I had hoped to publish 100 articles, which I thought was going to be impossible. I managed to publish 86 – many more than I thought.
This was a failure on the grandest scale. I put on what I call the “Pandemic 15.” We’re staying at home and cooking more comfort food – lots of cheese and pastries. We’re also not getting the same exercise in.
My BMI had gotten up to 29 and that’s just too high. Anticipating this article, I’ve been following my extreme diet for a few days and my BMI is down to an even 28. This is the easiest weight at the beginning to lose, so a core goal of 2021 will be to lose 20 pounds. It’s going to be tough.
I didn’t post the 5+ items a month on Ebay/Craigslist/Facebook Marketplace like I had hoped. In fact, I don’t think I sold anything. However, I threw out many, many things and organized a bunch more. In the last 6 months, I’ve made tremendous progress on the basement and the garage. My wife is the queen of Facebook Marketplace and it’s working out well for us.
We’re almost at the point where we can finish the basement and put a car in the garage.
I had a goal to work on coding with the kids, but I haven’t put together a curriculum yet. We have a bunch of coding toys, but I’d like something more structured that explains what a loop is and why it is important. We’ve got some time before we get started on this.
Overall, we did tremendous amounts of learning in 2020. During homeschool we did almost everything. We were able to do extra during breaks because we didn’t have the option of going on vacation. This fall the kids’ school opened up with extreme precautions in place. We had as many good adventures as you can have during COVID-19. If anything, the kids are too spoiled and have an unhealthy expectation that the world revolves around them. In any other year, I’d give myself a lower grade for this. In 2020, I don’t mind the extra spoiling – hopefully it makes up for not being able to play with their friends.
I didn’t make the $75,000 like I had hoped. Dog sitting income disappeared and I couldn’t blog much while teaching the kids. I was able to make over $50,000 which is good considering the circumstances.
We didn’t get the estate planning done. It’ll be easier when we can actually meet people and talk in person.
I didn’t create bucket list. I don’t know why I have problems with this. I should have been able to knock this out in a few hours.
I improved my Japanese quite a bit as my Duolingo streak has now reached nearly 600 days. Recently, I started to review Spanish because I was rusty there.
I didn’t create the YouTube Channel, but I’ve been researching it a lot over the last week. I wanted to start a channel with the kids about Pokemon, but it’s hard to find a name that isn’t trademarked and still conveys the idea of the channel. I think I have an idea though. One big breakthrough this year was that the kids had to learn to use a lot of technology for distance learning. They are getting good with their hand-me-down phones (with only wifi access), so they can film each other.
I didn’t self-publish a book – or even begin any kind of work on that one.
Final Goal Thoughts of 2020
When I created my goal post, I had the intention of following it, but that simply didn’t happen. I don’t think I can blame COVID.
I need to come up with more of a system or a set of habits where I “check-in” during the work day and move forward with an item on the list. Instead almost every day is about getting the kids ready for school, laundry, lunches and dinners cooked, grocery shopping, etc. In between, I spend time on deal sites, reading news, watching my stocks – not things that move the productivity needle. In 2021, I’ll need to work on the good habits more.