Top 5 2017 Goals

I know, I know… It is the end of January and I am only putting out my 2017 goals now! However, it is not my fault that I have not been able to post for the last two months. I moved into a brand new apartment in December when I started my job and did not get internet until two months later! Can you imagine a millennial in 2017 going two months without internet?

To be honest, it really was not that bad. But this is a story for another day.

Today I want to share my 2017 goals and discuss a slight change in my investing philosophy. My goals will be a mix of financial goals, blog goals, and personal goals that will hopefully inspire you to make some lofty goals yourself. I will give a six month update in June and then again at the end of the year to track my progress!

2017 Goals

Save 55% of my salary

This is perhaps my biggest and most important goal of 2017. As many of my loyal readers know, I am a huge fan of increasing your savings rate. Wealth is not created by your salary. It is created by the amount you save. I have friends that make more money than me but spend all their money on wants rather than experiences or their future retirement.

Do yourself a favor and begin paying yourself first. You do not want to be that guy/gal who lived your life in your 20s and is still working in your 70s.

Invest $24,000 for the year

My goal is to simply invest $2,000 a month. Half of this amount will be invested into my 401(k) while the rest will go towards maxing my Roth IRA for 2016 as well as 2017 and maxing my 2017 HSA. In my Roth IRA and HSA, I plan on continuing my dividend growth investing strategy to maximize the tax benefits of these amazing retirement accounts. Any additional money I have left over will be allocated between saving for my first rental property as well as purchasing dividend stocks in a regular trading account.

Visit two new places

While I am limited to where I travel until I hopefully get my work visa (If I don’t get it I must leave the US L), I plan on visiting one new state this summer and hopefully one new country once my work visa is approved. Travel has long been one of my passions and I hope to see two new countries a year to expose me to a multitude of different cultures.

Release a new article at least once a week

Life has become very busy since I began working. I have already traveled to three different cities in my short month and a half of work and I will be entering what we call “busy season” until the April 15th tax period is over. This goal will be more challenging than others depending on where we are in the accounting cycle but I am committed to growing this blog and helping my readers improve their financial situation.

Make $200 a month in side income

The last of my goals is to have a successful side hustle. While $200 a month may not seem like a hard task for many, it can make a significant difference in goal #1, 2 and 3. Like goal #4, this will be easier in some months rather than others but I am a firm believer that nothing comes to you in life without hard work.

Wrap Up

While I was at a session in New York, we had a career focused talk. Here are some important tips that helped me set these goals. Write down your goals, list them in importance from one to five and throw the rest away. Studies show that having more than five goals makes a person become unfocused as there are too many moving parts. Secondly, write your goals down. As silly as it may sound in a digital age, those that write their goals down are 40% more likely to achieve their goals. As somebody who has done this on a blog, I guarantee you that this works as you feel accountable to yourself and your readers.

Now that I have shared my top 5 goals, what are some of your 2017 goals?


21 comments… add one
  • Financial Slacker Jan 30, 2017, 7:59 am

    Welcome back, Stefan. Glad to hear you’re settling into the new job.

    Sounds like good reasonable goals.

    I also like keeping the number of goals limited as too many really does create too much lack of focus.

    Good luck with the work visa.

    • Stefan Sharpe Feb 1, 2017, 9:13 pm

      Thanks Dave!

      These are pretty reasonable goals. Investing will be the hardest but I am way ahead already. Best of luck with your goals!

  • Amanda @ centsiblyrich Jan 30, 2017, 11:10 am

    Great to have you back, Stefan! I admit, I was starting to wonder…

    Awesome goals for the year. I like the idea of limiting them to 5. And I totally agree, trying to make too many changes at once limits focus, which then limits progress. Looking forward to following along!

    • Stefan Sharpe Feb 1, 2017, 9:23 pm

      Thanks Amanda looking forward to getting back into following your blog!

  • The Green Swan Feb 1, 2017, 8:08 am

    Welcome back to the 2000s…you have internet again! 🙂 I don’t blame you for focusing more on the day job, that should definitely be priority number one. Best of luck during busy season!

    • Stefan Sharpe Feb 1, 2017, 9:24 pm

      haha it is great to be back! The job will be #1 as it pays the bills thats for sure!

  • Jack @ Enwealthen Feb 1, 2017, 2:26 pm

    Great advice on staying focused by limited your goals to 5. I have a long and growing to do list, like everyone else. But for goals, it’s a short short list that gets reviewed every day, every month, and every year.

    Focus on what matters. Forget the rest.

    • Stefan Sharpe Feb 1, 2017, 9:38 pm

      Thanks Jack. Our to do list will forever be long but like you I think having a short goal list is good

  • Alexis @FITnancials Feb 1, 2017, 5:34 pm

    One of my goals is to get to $10,000 in savings this year. Hopefully more!

    • Stefan Sharpe Feb 1, 2017, 9:24 pm

      I hope you hit it! Just hustle away!

  • timeinthemarketblog Feb 5, 2017, 11:05 am

    These all sound like awesome goals and I might copy one of them(the new places one) for my own 2017 goals. Good luck with the goals.

    What are you planning on for your side hustle? I recently started writing and self-publishing again and am eager to see how much I can make(if anything) in 2017.

    • Stefan Sharpe Feb 5, 2017, 5:55 pm

      My side hustle will likely entail this blog but I do not take any revenues from the blog instead I reinvest it. Once my busy season is over I will try to find some other online income. I will do a post once I figure it out!

  • Dividend Diplomats Feb 5, 2017, 11:09 am

    MBudget –

    Nice job on the goals list. Don’t let anything take you off your game, especially during busy season. Bert & I are bout 5 weeks into ours and it’s definitely heating up, feeling the burn, that’s for sure. Stay hungry, save, invest, repeat. Talk soon and kick ass.


    • Stefan Sharpe Feb 5, 2017, 5:56 pm

      Thanks Lanny. It sure is getting busy! I just had to do about 4 hours on a Sunday and it is only now really picking up. Will be tough to manage the posting but my investments are going superb! I will likely have alot more investing most this year.

  • Divi Cents Feb 5, 2017, 1:17 pm

    I’m glad you got your internet is back up.

    I love you goal to save 55%. Most people have a tough time saving 10%!

    I’m looking forward to see your progress this year!

    • Stefan Sharpe Feb 5, 2017, 5:57 pm

      Thanks bud, nice to be back!

      55% is the absolute minimum I will settle for honestly. So far I am on track but I know those vacations will take a lot of capital and likely make the goal hard.

  • Shaina McGregor Feb 6, 2017, 9:23 pm

    Great goals! My goals this year are also to save more of my pay check, but I realized I first need to increase my streams of income. As a college student, dancer, and fairly new blogger, The Mindful Rise, I am very busy, but I want to make sure that I am brining in decent income each month to make my savings goal. In one of my posts on how as a Junior in college I have paid $6 towards my student loans, I said my goal was to put $2k every other month towards my student loans. I also would like to bring in at least $100 a month from side hustle/ online income. My major goal would be to start bringing in consistent income from my blog and reaching more like-minded Millennials interested in saving their money and being bosses at their careers.

    Here is my post How I Paid $6k Towards my Student Loans at 20 Years Old-

    Shaina, The Mindful Rise

    • Stefan Sharpe Feb 6, 2017, 9:52 pm

      Sounds like you have a good plan and strong work ethic. Look into getting scholarships as well, that was a major part of me saving money in school.

  • Julie @ Millennial Boss Feb 7, 2017, 12:23 pm

    I have a similar savings rate goal! Good luck this year! You can do it!!

    • Stefan Sharpe Feb 12, 2017, 7:47 pm

      Thanks Julie, it would be fun to compare our rates at the end of the year!

  • Dividends Down Under Feb 26, 2017, 1:14 am

    Nice goals Stefan, love all of them, particularly the savings rate and investing. Good luck with them! We have similar types of goals, except you’re aiming for a little higher than we are 🙂


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