Ms ZiYou 2091 Goals Update

Goals for 2019 – Mid Year Update

Oops, for the first half of 2019 I’ve been forgetting to blog a lot. My apologies, but you know what? Sometimes life gets in the way, and it’s good to vary your focus and intensity. So to break me in gently, here is my review and progress on my 2019 goals.  And here is the background to them: my 2019 goals.

And as a fast follower, I do have a stack of post ideas ready to write, a few monthly updates I’ve missed and some entries to add to my counting countries series. Not to mention updates on my dating adventures, travels and other fun things.

2019 Goals Progress: Starts again with the fun things

Yet More Travel

Ms ZiYou Travel

Goal: Visit six countries including two new countries.

Stretch Goal: Spend less than £1.5k on travel.

Update: There has been a lot of travel. Some planned, and even 2 new countries unplanned. I’ve been to Hungary, Spain, Moldova (a new country), France, Georgia (another new country), Armenia (yet another new country) and Spain again.  So have exceeded that goal in the first half alone. Not to mention the planned trips to USA, Canada and Sweden to come later in the year.

On the stretch goal side, in review, this seems inversely correlated with the first goal. I can safely say I have blown this one for the year, already at £2.1k. Hopefully, I can keep it under £3k by the end of year. If not, not the end of the world, as travel is a value purchase for me.

Keep up the 汉语

Goal: Pass the first year of the Chinese Course.

Stretch Goal: Pass HSK4 Test.

Update: One of the many things that have been keeping me occupied and away from blogging, alongside the travel, is studying Chinese. After the indignity of exams, I am happy to report that I have passed my first year. Not amazingly, but as expected given my lack of superior linguistic skills. In short, I can read fine, write ok, listening is hard and speaking challenging! 

As for my stretch goal, I’m on the fence about this. Going to study over the summer and see how I get on. I might do later this year, or I might postpone until 2020.


Goal: Keep volunteering on 2 boards and concentrate on adding value.

Update: Now chair of one board and treasurer of another. This is somewhere I really enjoy spending my time and I feel that I really am giving back and doing something worthwhile.


Goal: Run 2 marathons in the year.

Stretch Goal: Beat my PB in the marathon.

Update: One marathon is done, another pencilled in. But I have been getting slower, not faster, so will need to make an effort to get near that PB never mind beat it. So, putting more effort in is on the table here and my goal for the second half of 2019.


Goal: Blog at least once a week.

Stretch Goal: Blog twice each week.

Update: Failed. Yes, this one isn’t one where I have done well. But I’m going to use this halfway point to make a change and bring blogging back into focus. I do tend to have an addictive personality, so I’m hoping I can refocus on blogging later in the year.

2019 Goals Progress: The good habits

Keep working

Ms ZiYou working

Goal: Keep in contract and bill as much as last year.

Update: Failed, taking a break at the moment and really don’t have the momentum to take any job. I’m enjoying summer and holding out for the right opportunity to come my way. In a month or so I’ll reevaluate this position.


Goal: Keep Spending under £24k.

Stretch Goal: Keep Spending under £22k.

Update: Not bad – currently standing just over the stretch goal. And it’s been a spendy first half of the year, so a few budget months may bring this number down – only time will tell.


Goal: Maintain non-pension and reduce pension contributions. 

Update: Failed. But the reason is directly related to the working one, so I’m not too worried.  On the plus side, I have successfully reduced my pension contributions. 

2019 Goals Progress: The less good habits to rectify


Goal: Reduce excess weight and get back down to a good racing weight for marathons.

Update: Failed. Or to put it accurately, not really started. Another one for later in the year.


Goal: Read at least one book a week and keep notes of what I have read.

Update: Failed. Another one that I really should get round to.


Goal: Reduce web-browsing in evenings and weekends.

Update: Have improved, but maybe not enough? I can certainly do more, but I am now consciously wasting lost time rather than quality time where I could be doing something better.

External Motivation

Goal: Reduce dependence on external motivation.

Update: Not too bad. I still love the pressure of a big external deadline, but I am moving things along myself without them more and more now. And truth be told, I don’t think I will ever truly get away from this particular type of external motivation.


Goal: Make a real effort at dating and go on at least 24 dates / meet someone worth keeping around.

Update:  Finally, after that run of excuses/promises to do better, one where I have met the goal. I am pleased to report all is going well in the love department and my cat has even reluctantly given his approval. 

2019 Goals Mid Year Summary

And this is why I love to review early mid-year – half the year has gone, but I’ve still got half to go. While I am chuffed with what I have achieved, there are a few areas that I’ve taken my foot off the pedal. Now I do like to move the goalposts, but I’m actually quite happy this time keeping these goals until the end of the year. Not to mention, that this midyear check-in has highlighted what I’m doing awesome at, and other areas that deserve a little more focus, as they still mean a lot to me.

Over to you

  • What are your thoughts?
  • What are your goals for 2019?
  • Do you review them mid-year?

Thank you for reading – please leave a comment below and join in the conversation. You can also connect on Twitter or contact me privately.

10 comments on “Goals for 2019 – Mid Year Update

  1. Hey Ms Ziyou

    Have missed your updates so it’s great to read this round up of what you’ve been up to and you have been busy! How do you fit so much in? I’m not surprised you have no time for blogging!

    I always marvel at how you travel so cheaply – I went away recently and it was easily around £500 and that was one country! I have another trip coming up shortly, which I thought I had budgeted for but now it seems it’s going to turn into another trip where I have a ‘holiday within a holiday’, not that I’m complaining!

    Anyway, congrats on passing the first year of your Chinese – I know how tough it is!

    Great to hear that things are still going well on the romance front, sounds like it was worth all that effort of going through those dates.

    I think I’ve mentioned previously that I’d be interested in volunteering on boards in the future so may pick your brains on that at some point.

    1. Thanks Weenie.

      As for travelling cheaply – I guess I’m not too fussy do things like take the Martshukas and don’t travel to really expensive places – more developing countries shall we say. Looking forward to hearing about your holiday in a holiday – that sounds intriguing.

      And you are always welcome to pick my brains anytime on volunteering.

  2. Hey ms zi you welcome back. What a lovely position to be in to decide whether to work or not over the summer
    With a child on the way in November it does make one review they’re work life balance. I’d love to be able to do what firestarter does and work part time but my job doesn’t really lend itself to that

    1. Hi FBA –

      Indeed, it is a fabulous position being able to decide to chill for the summer and forget about work.

      And yes, it sounds like you need to explore the options for work life balance now you have a little one on the way – why do you think it won’t be possible with your job?

  3. Welcome back Ms. ZiYou! So glad you’re doing well, especially on the dating front. I loved that your cat approves 🙂 Good for you, I wish you much happiness, and look forward to hearing more about it!! For me, my main goal for 2019 was to actually retire, and I’m about 2 weeks away from that. So it’s an exciting time, with lots of emotions… and I don’t really have the mental space to focus on much else. I want to make sure I leave my work team in the best possible way, so that they don’t think I was slacking off those last few months… I care a great deal about them and hope we’ll stay in touch, even if they don’t really understand my decision to leave.

    I think you had an insane list of goals at the start of the year and it’s totally ok to fail at some of them. Kudos for all that you did achieve already!!!… and for continuing to blog 🙂

    1. Hi FF – lovely to hear from you.

      And damn right it’s important the cat approves – he has lived with me for 12 years after all! 🙂

      I am so happy to hear that you are actually going to pull the plug and retire, I am excited for you. I’m sure with time your team will come to understand your decision and why you left.

      Nothing like an insane list of things to keep me busy!

  4. You’re doing really well with your goals. I find it hard to concentrate on more than a couple of things at a time. So I’m working really hard on my Spanish just now, but matched betting has ground to a bit of a halt. I’m running regularly, but my healthy eating is out the window. And when I trained for a marathon a couple of years ago the rest of my life was put on hold. I can fit halves around normal life, but training for a full I find totally exhausting. Two every year I can’t even imagine.

    1. Hi SS –

      I’m the opposite in some ways – I get bored easily and need something else to switch too…..I always have lots of things on the go and background projects to bring to the fore.

      I only did matched betting 10+ years ago, but I remember it being very time consuming – and you needed free time at the right time of day.

      Also, I think being child free helps – it gives me many more free hours in the day and over the weekend.

What do you think?