2019 Goals: June Recap & Mid-Year Check In

We’re halfway through 2019, which means it’s time to review our goals and high-five ourselves for all the great things we’ve accomplished, and then re-evaluate our goals (or write new ones) for the second half of the year. I’ve said this before but this is really the first year I’ve actually attempted to track my goals and progress for the entire year. It’s been great so far and these “public diary entry” type posts have helped me stay accountable and record my accomplishments.

First, a recap of June:


We made our first big financial decision as a married couple — and since becoming debt-free — we bought our truck! We considered waiting until a few months from now when we’d have more money in savings, but we decided to make our adventures a priority this summer. We’ve been in debt-payoff mode for over a year now so we’re confident that we’ll pay off the truck in about a year. It was more worth it to us to buy it now and be able to use it than to wait — especially because we’ve both got great jobs and are making good money (and don’t have kids yet or other big expenses).

Personal Growth

I have upped my gym time to 5 days a week and am loving it! I’m really starting to see progress in the amount of weight I can lift and the muscle tone in my body. I decided to stop tracking my daily calories this month and see how I felt just eating what I want — and I feel great! We’ve been camping every weekend and I didn’t want to stress out about calorie intake –I wanted to enjoy my s’mores — so I’ve been exploring my food freedom and feel like I’m doing a great job of eating whatever I want but in normal portion sizes (aside from s’mores — they have no portion size). It’s all about finding that balance!

Camping every weekend has also been so great for me. I’ve never felt happier. I’ve had less anxiety moments and although I was worried I’d feel burnt out after a few weekend adventures, I feel so much more energized! I get so stuck in my routines so changing things up on the weekends has been great — and I still get to have a fairly normal routine during the week. It’s definitely changing my perspective in so many ways. I feel like I finally have a good understanding of what it means to be putting my money toward experiences rather than objects. For example, this past weekend we had a pretty shitty camping experience so rather than throw in the towel we decided to book a hotel in Moab for the next night. I’m so frugal that I hate paying $150 for a hotel when I could camp for free or camp for $20 at an rv park, but we needed a nice hotel with a pool so we could relax, and I had this “aha!” moment where I was like, “It’s just money! If this is how we want to use it, then we shouldn’t feel guilty!” Plus, I told Kevin that if we had gone back home we would have gone to the Ikea sale and spent $500 on furniture or something.


As I mentioned above, the weekend adventures have improved my mood immensely and reduced my anxiety to basically nothing. They’ve also really improved our relationship! We don’t argue nearly as much as we used to, and when we do — usually when something doesn’t go as planned — it’s so much easier for us to laugh it off and move on. It’s been so great for us to spend quality time together outside of our normal routine and we absolutely love traveling together. We’ve even created a routine where we download all of our Go Pro photos on Sunday night and we sit next to each other on the couch and go through them together and reminisce on all the fun moments we had that weekend.

We both feel so lucky and blessed that we are financially able to do all of this travel. It’s really made us appreciate the things in our life that matter most — spending time together, exploring outdoors, having great jobs, our close family and friends who support us unconditionally — and it’s put into perspective the things that don’t deserve our time or energy — acquiring more material objects we don’t need, following the “traditional” life path because it’s what everyone else is doing, trying to maintain and improve relationships with people who have never given us their unconditional love and support. It’s been very eye opening — particularly for me — to realize that we’ve been holding onto all of this stuff that just isn’t worth our time and energy, and to finally be letting that go and letting it fall off our shoulders.

We have done some really amazing things the first half of 2019 and I could not be more excited to see what’s in store for the second half. I have made some changes to my goals and I’m excited to share them with you.

2019 Revised Goals


  • Pay off student loans by March 2019. Done!
  • Keep $1,000 in savings for emergencies. Done!
  • Have $10,000 in savings by July to buy a new car. Truck is bought!
  • End the year with $20,000 in savings. End the year with $10,000 in savings.
  • Pay off 1/2 of the truck balance by the end of the year.
  • Money is just money — do what you want with it.

Because we’ll be doing an aggressive payoff plan for the truck, we won’t be able to put $20,000 into savings — but I think $10,000 is a great goal for us to reach for. Each month, we will be paying a large lump sum toward the truck and then putting the rest in savings. I’m excited to see our progress on this! The “money is just money” attitude is so important and I feel like I’ve just started to scratch the surface of this — I feel like I’m “supposed” to have this much saved before we have a baby and I feel like I’m “not supposed to” spend this much money on things and if I do I feel guilty. I’m kicking that mindset out the door and I’m really going to work on doing what I want with my money, whether it’s the norm or not.

Personal Growth

  • Be in the best shape of my life by June 2019. Be in the best shape of my life by December 2019 — there is so much room to grow here!
  • Master my Whole30 Food Freedom Lifestyle. By the end of 2019, think of food as fuel and deliciousness and eat what you want without feeling guilty about it.
  • Publish my first book.
  • Conquer my anxiety.

I’m so excited to continue to see physical progress this year. I’ve been taking monthly photos and writing in a work out journal. By the end of 2019 I hope to be able to do pull-ups without an assist, be able to see my biceps when I flex (we are so close), and reach new PRs in all of my lifting exercises. I’m sure that as I continue on this journey, I will continue to add more specific goals and accomplishments to this list.

I’ve gathered a lot of knowledge on what foods make me feel good, what foods make me feel bad, and the amount of calories I should generally consume on a daily basis. I’m going to switch my focus now to guilt-free eating. I still do that thing where I’m like “should I eat this/did I workout enough for this/do I deserve this?” and I’d like to nip that in the bud. I’ve been working hard on moderation and it’s paid off, but I’d like to be able to eat something — even if it’s a terrible food choice and I later realize it was a terrible choice — and not make myself feel guilty about it and not let it ruin my day.

The conquering the anxiety thing is a process and I’ve made a lot of progress both on my own and in therapy, but there is always more to do so I’m leaving that on there. The same with publishing my first book — I have not yet committed to one of the many ideas I have for my first book so I definitely need to get on that!


  • Establish a monthly date night. Continue our weekend adventures, even in the winter!
  • Establish a monthly talking time.
  • Achieve optimal physical, mental, and financial health together (so that we can talk about starting a family!)
  • Put time and energy into the people in our life who lift us up, bring joy to our lives, and love us for who we are.

We’ve gotten rid of date night in favor of weekend adventures and — as much as we are more of the summer travelers — we are going to make an effort to continue our weekend adventures through the fall and winter seasons! Obviously achieving optimal physical, mental, and financial health is a constant process so we are still working on it — and having frequent conversations about when we want to start a family and what we want to do first (i.e. road trip!).

For the second half of 2019, we are both focusing our time and efforts on cultivating and nurturing the wonderful relationships we have with other people — and of course, meeting new people and creating new relationships. In the past, we’ve both wasted a lot of time and energy on relationships with people that were ultimately toxic or that just didn’t put the same amount of effort into the relationship. One thing you realize — as you mature, I think — is that you’re not everyone’s cup of tea and that’s okay. You don’t have to maintain relationships with people that no longer serve you, and it’s okay to drift apart from old friends and find new ones. After living in Utah for a few years while all our friends and family live in Oregon (and our besties in Arizona), we realized that we needed to prioritize our time and energy and really focus on cultivating close relationships with a select few people.

Of course, this is more of an individual effort since we both have our own friends and we have different relationships with different people. For me, this has been about making my immediate family a priority — my parents and my brothers — and making sure I am putting as much time and energy as I can into my relationships with them, because they are the ones who have my back and fill my cup. It’s also been about reconnecting with old friends and making sure they know how much I appreciate them — while I am states away — and then taking the time to see them and spend time with them when I am visiting. And the biggest change I have noticed is the weight that was lifted off my chest when I decided to let go of relationships that were hurting me or draining me to try and maintain, to feel that responsibility being lifted off me was the best gift I have ever given myself.

For our shared relationships, we are making more of an effort to connect with people (especially our friends here in Utah) on a regular basis. We often get so caught up in our own lives that we realize we haven’t seen people in a long time, and we’re trying to change that. We just went out to dinner with some friends the other night and it was so much fun and it really did lift me up!

2019 Part 2

Writing these revised goals, I am so hopeful and excited for the rest of this year. I’m already getting excited to write my end of the year post and look back on all of the amazing memories and outstanding accomplishments from 2019. Even if goals aren’t your thing, I encourage you to write a little recap of the first half of 2019 for yourself — so you can remember all the great things and get excited for even better things!

Goodbye Part 1 of 2019, Hello Part 2!

Published by Sami Hertel

Oregon native, current Utah resident, blogging about my adventures on lifeafteroregon.com!

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