My 2021 Goals – Introduction

Whether it’s on Twitter, email, or Instagram, I am often asked for more information about some of my goals. This article contains the different goals I have set for myself and I will regularly communicate their progress through a dedicated article each month.

How do I proceed?

In 2019, I didn’t care about my finances and I knew that on average, I wasn’t spending more than I was earning and that was fine for me. I started to get interested in personal finance, frugality concepts and the FIRE movement in mid-2020 and this blog was born in February 2021. By the end of 2020, I had a clear vision and a financial plan in place. Here is the strategy I adopted:

  • I track my expenses and revenues. Each expense is associated to a category. This allows me to optimize them. I do all this with an application, YNAB.
  • At the end of each month, I report the status of my accounts on my home net worth calculator.

It takes me about 30 minutes at the end of each month, but it gives me a clear view of my savings rate, my spending categories, my net worth, and the performance of my investments.

What are my goals?

I’m going to be totally transparent with you, before June 2021, I had never taken the time to set goals on paper. I didn’t really see the benefit of it, as I was doing my classic tracking rigorously, i.e., money in, money out, savings rate, my investment performance, etc.

Except I was wrong 🙂 Having spoken with a friend who aspires to be FIRE one day, he convinced me of the importance of setting ambitious but realistic goals and tracking their progress!

So here is the list I have set for 2021:

  • Invest the maximum on my 3rd pillars (6’883.- CHF)
  • Invest CHF 15’000 in the stock market (shares, ETF)
  • Achieve a savings rate of 50%
  • Learning to invest in crypto – 2’000 CHF
  • Increase my cash by 30’000 CHF
  • Read 4 books about personal development or finance
  • Write 35 posts for my blog (in French)
  • Translate 20 posts from my blog into English
  • Get 100 subscribers to my newsletter
  • Earn 2,000 CHF in additional income

These 10 goals are ambitious, but realistic. I will work throughout the year to achieve them.

Important : I have listed them in order of priority! It’s very important to do this, because it will allow you to prioritize your actions.

How will I communicate?

As explained above, at the end of each month, I will do my little analysis and I will communicate an article detailing the elapsed month! If you are reading this page, if you are interested by the contents and if you are not yet subscribed to my newsletter, it’s the right time 🙂 Indeed, subscribers receive all my new publications by e-mail.

1. Invest the maximum on my 3rd pillars (6’883.- CHF)

This is my primary goal. Why? Simply because everything I invest in this type of account is tax deductible! The maximum for 2021 is 6’883.- CHF which makes me about 574.- CHF/month to invest! In my case, I have accounts with 2 institutions:

Because of my mortgage pledge contract with Axa, I have to deposit CHF 413.50 per month! This leaves me with 160.25 CHF to invest to Viac.

2. Invest CHF 15’000 in the stock market (shares, ETF)

Second very important goal! My money must work for me and make babies! My investment strategy in the stock market must be quick and simple. I don’t want to spend my days buying and selling. Once a month, I deposit money in my Interactive Broker account and I invest mainly in two ETFs:

These two ETFs represent about 80% of my portfolio, the rest being various undervalued (or even slaughtered) stocks on which I hope to make a good return by selling them in a few months / years.

My strategy with ETFs is clearly long term (20 years) whereas with my stocks, the goal is to sell them as soon as a certain performance is reached. All the gains I make with stocks, I reinvest them following my strategy of 80% ETF, 20% stocks. I am planning an article detailing my portfolio and explaining my strategy in more detail.

3. Achieve a savings rate of 50%

To invest, you need money. To have more money to invest, you either have to earn more or spend less. The best way is to do both. If you are able to earn more money without increasing your standard of living, all this additional money can be invested and in general the more you invest, the more your money will work for you and the more it will make babies 🙂

Achieving this rate is quite challenging with one child and Mrs. GP working at 60%, but it is still realistic. In order to calculate this rate, I have to track all of my cash inflows and expenses. As already mentioned, I do it with this great application, YNAB.

Note: YNAB is not free and for this reason, it is not the most frugal solution. There are a lot of free GoogleSheets that allow you to do this job. It’s up to you to see what motivates you the most 🙂

4. Learning to invest in crypto – 2’000 CHF

I admit I don’t know enough about this crypto world, but fortunately I have friends who almost only do that :-). Cryptocurrency is not really part of my investment strategy for the moment. The volatility of the markets being too high and it is not conceivable for me to put a big amount in this domain.

Having studied and understood the SwissBorg ecosystem well, this is the only place where I buy and store my cryptos. I admit that it’s still a bit exciting to wake up one morning and one of your crypto’s has gone up +75% overnight, but it really shows the volatility of this technology. From a strategic point of view, it’s pretty basic; I buy a little bit of crypto from time to time, in Bear Market ideally, and I stake them! In other words, my SwissBorg application pays me every 24 hours to thank me for “blocking” tokens. Considering the amount I invest, it clearly doesn’t cover the market volatility, but it’s better than nothing

5. Increase my cash by 30’000 CHF

I’m very cautious by nature and it’s important for me to have a substantial emergency fund to get me through a potentially complicated situation. In all the reading you can find on financial independence or the FIRE movement, an emergency fund is mandatory! Having a family with children, this emergency fund is not an option in my case 🙂 As for the amount, it’s up to you to know how much you need to live “x” months.

Even though my current emergency fund is much higher than this amount, having this goal forces me to be rigorous in tracking my expenses and it will help me reach my 50% savings rate goal 🙂

6. Read 4 books about personal development or finance

I love to read books in paper format, but I don’t do it often enough. Sometimes we need to take a step back and get our minds off of computers, social media, etc. Books are a great way to get out of that spiral, and they allow me to go deeper into subjects that I wouldn’t necessarily have studied in detail if I had stayed on the Internet. The “Books” page contains very good references :-). I also take advantage of this paragraph to give you directly the links to my favorite books.

If you order through these links, I will get a small commission 🙂 Thanks in advance.

7. Write 35 posts for my blog (in French)

I was hesitant about this goal, because I don’t want to fall into a circle where this goal pushes me to produce content just for fear of not reaching the 35 posts. Even though I set this goal, it won’t influence me on how often I post! The goal of this blog is clearly to produce articles whose content reflects my own experience or possibly an experience of someone else I know personally.

8. Translate 20 posts from my blog into English

I quickly realized that my French posts were attractive to a French-speaking population (Switzerland or France), but that my German-speaking compatriots would not read them. Unfortunately, since I don’t know enough German, I can’t translate the articles into German, but I can translate them into English. This is not a complicated task, but it is very time consuming. I put it as a goal, because besides hoping to attract a broader audience, it is an excellent exercise for me.

9. Get 100 subscribers to my newsletter

Let’s be honest, having people who like the content I produce and who subscribe to the newsletter is a great source of motivation. I’m not talking about the financial aspect, because my blog doesn’t make me any money today, but really the source of motivation to continue this blog. If you read this article and you like it, subscribe if you haven’t already 🙂

Feel free to share this blog.

10. Earn 2,000 CHF in additional income

For this last objective, I would like to reach 2’000 CHF of additional income. Indeed, working at 100% and having a family life, it is difficult to add another source of income. To reach this amount, I count a lot on passive income (dividends, advertising traffic on my site, affiliations) and a little on active sources (computer support to private people, answering surveys, selling unused objects, etc.).

Conclusion

Woooaw, I’m glad I did this exercise of putting my goals on paper! Being reticent at first, I realize that it’s a great exercise and has helped me clarify a lot of small points! I hope this new type of monthly content will interest you!

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