Darwin’s 2010 Performance vs. Goals

by Darwin on December 29, 2010

Earlier in the year, I wrote about Setting Goals and Changing My Life with metrics, systems, motivation and execution.  Since 2010 is coming to a close, it’s time to go back and review how I did vs my goals in 2010.  I had spoken of a few primary categories affecting both my finances and my personal life: Blogging Income, College Funding, and My Weight.

Blogging – Income and Accomplishments

Initial Goal: Grow Traffic and Income by 10% monthly.

Accomplishments: Since I wrote this article in July, 5 months later, I should have increased my traffic by about 50% from that date.  According to my latest sitemeter output, I blew away that objective.  December is on track to have about 8500 page views, which is almost 4 TIMES the traffic I had in July.  So, I crushed that objective.  I love to make money online, but there’s a certain sense of achievement that comes with just the base traffic improvements regardless of what my financials look like each month (since there are variables in there outside pure traffic like one-off deals or annual renewals).

As expected, income grew proportionally; even moreso, given additional ad opportunities I was able to participate in through yakezie.com and my ETF blog ETFBase which brings in ad opportunities occasionally as well.  Now that some of my content is finally starting to show up in Google Search relatively consistently, I’m looking forward to continuing to increase traffic substantially month over month.  Be sure to catch my update for 2011 goals where I’ll lay out my plan.

Bonus Income: Something I hadn’t counted on when I started out was freelance income.  This year presented itself with a few different opportunities to write for other major outlets like American Express, Wisebread and some other sponsored post opportunities.

College Funding Goals

Initial Goal: Contribute several thousand dollars to each kids’ 529 Plan account this year.

Accomplishments: I used some additional blogging income this year to ensure I was able to contribute a few hundred dollars per month to each kid’s account.  I was able to up my contributions later in the year and I’ve left them on automatic, so I just ensure my savings account has enough to cover a couple months’ investments at any point in time so I don’t miss one.  I held back a little bit because we were thinking of moving this year and I wanted to conserve cash, but now that that ship has sailed, I’ll be upping it again in 2011.  I’ll have to set some firm numbers for my update.

Weight Loss

Initial Goal: Reduce weight from 177 pounds to 165 pounds by losing about 1.5 pounds per week.

Accomplishments: I ended up getting down to a low of 168 pounds and then the holidays hit.  I’m presently around 170-171 most mornings.  So, I did a decent job of losing a few pounds; enough that I notice the difference.  I would like to get down to around 165 though with some running in the spring.  What I found though, is that it seems to be very much more diet-dependent than exercise dependent.  I’ve exercised for years, including running occasionally, and only seemed to put on a pound or two a year.  Now, with some diet changes, I was able to drop the weight quickly.

Bonus Accomplishments

  • Work – I achieved a professional certification this year for Certified Supply Chain Professional.  While not as big a deal as when I completed an MBA, it’s good to further my education and continue to broaden and refine my skills in this tough job market.
  • New Biz – I just kickstarted a new site which I’ll be sharing soon which will focus on a business a friend and I are working on – and it’s not blogging!

So, that was my performance in 2010.  I’ll be setting my 2011 objectives with more categories and ideas soon.  I have a new small business I’m starting up with a college buddy, I’ll have more online activity going on, some personal finance goals and more.  Make sure to subscribe to my RSS so you can see what I’m up to in 2011 and keep me honest!

{ 15 comments… read them below or add one }

Daniel December 29, 2010 at 2:23 pm

Clearly you had a huge December and you’re doing everything right. I guess good writing attracts lots of visitors!


Financial Samurai December 29, 2010 at 2:33 pm

Looks like you did pretty well! The Certified Supply Chain Professional is a great achievement.

How tall are you approximately?


Darwin December 29, 2010 at 3:07 pm

Funny question (but I get the context)! 5’9-5-10′


Financial Samurai January 3, 2011 at 1:15 am

Cool. 165lbs would be a great weight.


Joe Plemon December 29, 2010 at 5:32 pm

Congrats on doing well on your goals — and being vulnerable enough to share the results. I especially like to see your blog readership growing. Keep up the good work.

Do you think Sam has worked up an ideal weight per inch of height? Hmmm.


Darwin December 29, 2010 at 6:17 pm

I’ll bet he has something up his sleeve :>


twentysomethingmoney December 29, 2010 at 5:40 pm

Congrats on reaching most of your goals, They can be challenging, but it looks like you got most of the way there — and thats what really counts!


Len Penzo December 29, 2010 at 8:28 pm

You know, you and I have even more in common than I thought. I’m 5-10 and my “fighting” weight is 168. I’ve gained two pounds over the past two weeks though — thank you, holiday cookies! — so I’m sitting at 170 now. I’ll get it off when I go back to work next week.

Glad to see you’re hitting your goals! Keep it up. Can’t wait to hear about the new business too!

All the best,

Len Penzo dot Com


Evan December 30, 2010 at 12:20 am

Glad your 2010 was so successful! I look forward to seeing what you can do in 2011


krantcents December 30, 2010 at 7:18 pm

Congratulations! I think you were successful because the goals were reasonable.


Invest It Wisely January 2, 2011 at 12:55 pm

Congrats on the goals; seems like you’re doing pretty well so far! Re: weight gain and loss, have you ever checked out Mark’s Daily Apple? There’s a lot of interesting content on there, and it meshes up with what you said about diet having more of an effect than exercise (Though they go hand-in-hand).

Happy new year, and hope you hit all your goals for 2011!


Darwin January 2, 2011 at 9:58 pm

Thanks for the recommendation; I’ll have to check that out!


retirebyforty January 3, 2011 at 4:17 pm

Great jobs on the 2010 goals. The blog is doing great and losing weight is always so difficult. I think diet is a bigger part of losing weight as well especially at the beginning. Once you get to a steady weight, I think it’ll be much more difficult to lose weight with diet.


101 Centavos January 4, 2011 at 7:42 am

Congratulations on hitting your goals, and on getting supply chain professional certification. Was that from the ISM?


Darwin January 4, 2011 at 9:40 am

Thanks! It was an APICS Certified Supply Chain Professional (CSCP).


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