2019 Goals Check-In

While 2019 has been an absolute roller coaster of a year thus far, I haven’t completely set my yearly goals to the wayside, here on the blog or in my personal life!  Today, I’m sharing a 2019 goals check-in to see where we’ve made progress and make adjustments where necessary.

2019 Goals Check-in: For the Sake of Good Taste

I first shared my 2019 Blogging Goals in a post all the way back in January.  Since then, there’s been some major restructuring and juggling of new schedules, so things have changed an awful lot!

  • Quadruple our traffic
  • Increase our retention
  • Improve social media stats
  • Feature four guest posts
  • Share two guest posts
  • Work with five brands
  • Create three original products
Traffic

In terms of traffic, we’re doing far better than I anticipated, given all of the difficulties 2019 has thrown at us!  Comparing 1 January through 30 June to the same period last year:

  • Page views: 3,967 vs. 2,598 (52.69%)
  • Sessions: 2,656 vs. 1,014 (161.93%)
  • Users: 2,412 vs. 856 (181.78%)
  • Average Time Spent: 00:38 vs. 02:17 (-72.38%)
  • Bounce Rate: 86.18% vs. 65.19% (-32.21%)

So, while our bounce rate and average time spent have dropped a bit, our page views, sessions, and users have all gone up considerably!  A major contributing factor to this is one post, our top films for self-care days, ranking remarkably well on Google.  We’ve also been focusing a lot more Pinterest growth, which might be a factor in both the increase in views and the increased bounce rate.

Retention

Our retention has been less stellar than we’d hoped, but with only a 1.5% difference since 2018, we’re hopefully that that will pick back up as well!

Social Media

As for social media…current vs. 2019 goals:

As you can probably tell, we haven’t exactly had the progress I’d like to see here.  I’m hoping to do some research and buckle down in this second half of the year to get at least a few of these numbers up!

A quick note on LinkedIn:  I’ve largely been neglecting sharing blog posts and accomplishments there!  I’ve recently started using the platform much more heavily, though (I’m on the lookout for some new remote writing gigs!), so it’s definitely something I’ve been working on.

I’ve also been on Twitter much less than usual (I’m managing quite a few accounts between blogging, writing, and publishing), and I’ve let Quora fall to the wayside more often than not–to be quite honest, the notifications on the mobile app were maddening!

Guest Posts & Brand Collaborations

We’ve only had one guest post featured so far, with Dave from My Pet Academia, but lots of room for more (reach out, bloggers!).

As for brands, we’ve worked with the good stuff and Chewy (be sure to click through that Chewy link for some adorable pet pics!) through Influenster! We’re regularly pitching and applying for campaigns, so we’re hopeful that there were be many more! Are you brand that would like to collaborate? Let us know!

Products

Product-wise, there were definitely some alterations to be made.  With adjusting the year’s schedule to accommodate the chaotic start to the year, our Swap It! launch has had to be pushed back considerably–I want to be sure we’re delivering the best possible product to you and the original time table would not have allowed for that!

That being said, we’re still planning to bring you all sorts of content–paid products and otherwise) throughout the end of 2019 and into 2020!

2019 Goals Check-in: Personal

As absurd as the blogging portion of my life has been these past six months, my personal life has been somehow more chaotic!  Yet, I’ve made relatively great progress on many of my goals.

  • Send 500 pieces in lit mag submissions
  • Launch Nightingale & Sparrow‘s first issues
  • Read 100 books
  • Complete 35 items on my 101 in 1,001 list
  • Finish my next two poetry manuscripts
  • Draft my novel
  • Pay off at least three credit cards
  • Earn income from the blog
  • Organise my life
  • Build my emergency fund
Submitting

At the risk of sounding absolutely absurd, I hit the first of these goals within a few weeks of the new year.  I had the time to devote to prepping submissions, there were lots of January/February deadlines, and I was especially enthusiastic!  I’m at nearly 1,000 pieces submitted currently (with plenty of repeats, of course!)–maybe 2,000 to push for by year’s end? Too ambitious a goal? Let me know what you think in the comments!

You can catch up on my recent publications here

Nightingale & Sparrow

As for Nightingale & Sparrow, we’ve gone above and beyond!  Not only have we successfully launched our first two issues online and in print, but we’ve started selling merchandise, created a small press and activism-centred imprint, and began building a small team of dedicated volunteers who love literature and our space as much as I do!

Read 100 books

My reading goals have struggled a bit, but I’m still determined to catch up.  Between health issues, long work hours, and a lengthy TBR list for reviews on my book blog, Pencils & Pages (I read so much more slowly when I have to!), I’m only just under a third of the way through. My Goodreads Reading Challenge is disappointed in me!

101 in 1,001

While progress has been slow, it’s there!  A few of the items on this list just haven’t been doable lately, rather from health or financial constraints.  It’s been frustrating, but I’ve been working at others in the meantime!

Check out my full 101 in 1,001 list here.

Poetry manuscripts

Not only did I finish my next two poetry books, but I’m working on book number six! My second, Micro, was published just this June, with a third coming soon (stay tuned for more information soon!).

ICYMI: My first book, Mistakes Were Made, was published in 2017!

Novel draft

I’ve haven’t made quite the novel progress I’d like, but it’s there. I’ve decided to publish that one under a pen name (to keep my poems and other work separate), too!

Money Goals

Credit cards, income, and my emergency fund have all been a little lacklustre progress-wise.  My current “day job” gets me by in terms of paying the bills and keeping me from starving (and I can largely thank my mom for her help on the latter front!), but it’s got long hours, small pay, and its share of health effects.  I’ve been working to take on some more freelance and even part-time remote work (if you’ve got a lead you’re willing to share, please reach out!), so I’m hoping to improve going forward.  I also have to replace my computer sooner rather than later (it’s very much on its last legs and doesn’t cooperate much) if I’m going to continue having any income at all!

Organise my life

My life organisation plans have largely gone out the window as I’ve tackled all that 2019 has thrown at me.  I’m still slowly going through things, working through the large chunk of my belongings that ended up in storage after graduation, and keeping things generally tidy.  But I haven’t been able to the full-fledged kon-mari-ing that I’d hoped for…yet!

One thing I have been working on, though, that’s semi-related, is making myself happier with my life.  As regular readers likely know, I struggle with mental health in addition to my physical health conditions.  From trying to practice gratitude and mindfulness to making social connections (online friends count!) and taking a full course on happiness and well-being, I’m putting my mind to this one.

Going forward….

As you can tell, it’s been a bit of a rough year thus far–both generally and in terms of progress on my 2019 goals! But I’m still hard at work behind the scenes, balancing the various aspects of my life.  I’m determined to get us/me a little bit closer to these goals, if not always reaching them, by year’s end! Any tips? Shoot me a message or comment below–I’d love to hear from you!

Have you been making progress on your 2019 goals? Share with us in the comments!

2019 Goals Check-In

9 thoughts on “2019 Goals Check-In”

  1. Oh wow, half of 2019 is already finished?? It is great that you have been doing great with your site stats! The best thing about a 101 in 1001 is that you have more than one year to get something done if it only flies around during a certain time of the year. Everything is a work in progress and as long as you’re trying to reach your goal, you’re already winning!

    Nancy ♥ exquisitely.me

    1. Right? How time flies…. You’re so right about a 101 in 1001–I think that’s why I’ve enjoyed them so much!

  2. I love how organized you are when it comes to our goals. I will be hoping to take a page from your book and wish you all the best as you continue to improve!

  3. I think that your progress is awe inspiring! It sounds like you know where you need to focus more energy, and have plans for doing that.
    I wish I could share goals, but I didn’t really make any for 2019 beyond “launch” and to make my eBook (which I’ve still not started XD) Next year I hope to be making goals as awesome as yours!

    1. Thank you so much! Hopefully I can refocus for the second half of the year without losing to much momentum elsewhere. You’ll definitely get there, too! ❤️

  4. It seems like you’ve had a busy first half of the year. And even though you haven’t gotten where you’d like to be it sounds like you’ve made great progress with your goals. Keep up the hard work and I know you’ll get there. 🙂 Slow and steady wins the race, as they say. 🏅

    1. Thank you so much! Even just writing up this post made a huge difference in how I was feeling—lots of work still to be done, but so much progress already! ✨

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