Ryan McLean : Slightly Unconventional

2009 In Retrospect

As 2009 is coming to a close I feel it is time to look back over the year and see the things that have been accomplished. All the hopes and dreams we had at the start of 2009 we can now see if we accomplished them. We can look at our old goals and perhaps edit them or reissue them for 2010. Most often we look back on our goals for 2009 and realise how stupid we were to make those goals. We realise we were so young and naive just 1 year ago, and then we go and make goals for 2010 that at the end of 2010 we will realise were stupid and naive.

I have come a long way in 2009, it has been a big year for me. I have learnt a lot about myself, and I have learnt a lot about finances. Prior to 2009 I spent a lot of time being fake. In the Christian circle often you feel like you need to uphold a certain standard so you can fit in (even if you only uphold that standard at Church on sundays). This year has been great because I have finally started to let my true self come out. It is definately still a work in progress and I think that will continue in 2010 but I am proud of myself.

Looking back on the goals I set at the start of the year I achieved the total sum of 0 of my goals. My goals were

So I achieve 0 of my goals for 2009. So what the hell did I achieve?

Me and my wife are pregnant with our first child and are due of the 24th Feb 2010. This is extremely exciting. It was funny because I was reading my journal and it said we had planned to have a baby at the start of 2011 (not 2010), I guess we scrapped that plan.

We moved house so many times I almost lost count. Now moving house is just like going to the movies. It is easy and it doesn’t cost much.

Setting a goal isn’t really an achievement. But this year I become more defined in what I wanted financially. Instead of simply seeking $100,000 per year in income my goal is now financial freedom. I want my passive income to cover my expenses so I only work if I want to. My goal is to achieve this in 5 years. Currently my passive income is $17/month…not quite there yet.

I was so close to buying a property that I could almost touch it. Unfortunately I couldn’t come up with the down payment in time and had to let it go. It was so close, but yet…so far. I learnt a lot from the experience though.

I pretty much devoured Robert Kiyosaki’s entire Rich Dad series. I am now working my way through the Rich Dad Advisory series. I read so much this year and I have learnt so much it has been incredible.

I discovered the most important part to investing is not making money it is learning to make money. Because more you learn about investing the quicker you can make your money back if you do lose it. I now know how to find positive cashflow properties, and that is a learned skill that will come in handy down the track.

Me and my wife lived with my mum for about 4 months this year. Our goal was to save some money for the baby. We saved about $1,000 and that’s all. My mum lives in a different train of thought than me and tried to convince me to get a full time job. She did a good job because she put an entrepreneurial spin on it “You should work for a business so you can learn how to run a business”…but I still believe I can become rich without a full time job and in 2010 I plan to prove it.

The only major impulse buy I can remember in buying my wife an Iphone. I am sure there were other impulse buys, but that was the biggest one.

Me and my wife (God love her) managed to live off the smell of a wet rag (aka. Next to nothing). This has sucked, but it has been good for us too. We now know that we can survive off a teeny tiny wage. It also presents a good challenge for people who earn 3 times as much as us and say “I can’t afford to have a baby” or “I can’t afford to invest”. Can’t? Or don’t want to?

2009 was a good year. I am sure I will look back on this post at the end of 2010 and realise how much of a douche I sounded like but oh well. I hope your 2009 was good like mine. And I hope 2010 will be even better.

3 responses to “2009 In Retrospect”

  1. Rock it! Goals are goals. You made progress, so that’s awesome. Moving house 4 times is pretty impressive too. You probably have other blogs, since you mentioned that you have 1,350 subscribers?

    Just found your blog through your tweet. Keep writing and I’ll keep reading 😉

  2. Hey, your baby is due a month before mine.

    I had to comment on your statement that “We now know that we can survive off a teeny tiny wage. It also presents a good challenge for people who earn 3 times as much as us and say “I can’t afford to have a baby” or “I can’t afford to invest”. Can’t? Or don’t want to?”

    Maybe the people who say that about babies (investing is different) are aware that they have obligations and need to cover those. If they have a mortgage, if they have people to support. That’s us. My mother is on an invalid’s pension and has been for years. My husbands parents are hovering on the edge of insolvency thanks to helping out his sisters. We bought their house to keep them from bankruptcy. Nice gesture, but it means we can’t sell that house if things get tough. It also means that we don’t have anyone who could bail us out if things got tough. We’re not only working to make our financial future secure, but we’ve got both sets of parents who would be coming to us if things got tough (and possibly the sisters, if only to stop them tapping their poor father again). You know, we’re doing all right, but that’s a lot to be resting on us. So yeah, I put off having a baby until we “could afford it.”

    You may be able to live off a wet rag but you have no mortgage, and no obligations. If things got tough for you, you could move back in with your mum like you did this year. Which is great for you, but maybe not for her. I wouldn’t be surprised if part of the reason she wanted you to take a fulltime job was so that YOU took responsibility for yourself rather than leaning on her. Can you really say you are supporting your family all by yourself?

    • ryan says:

      I like what you said. Know that when I said that it wasn’t me saying that was the be all and end all. There are always acceptions to the rule. But the fact is you can never afford to have a baby. We realised that which is why we went ahead and did it anyway.
      I didn’t move in with my mum because we had to, we did it cos we thought we could save money. But that was a little naive and now we know better. I love my mum, and my mother in law, but I would never like to live with them. We support ourselves to the best of our ability. It is hard at the moment, but that is a choice we have made. We don’t avoid full time job because we don’t want to take responsibility for ourselves, we do it because we want to take responsibility for our lives. We don’t want to end up hating our lives and forgetting our dreams like so many people do.

      I understand your situation, well I understand as best as you have explained it, and I have nothing against it. But it seems you had a lot resting on you before you got pregnant and still do after you go pregnant. I would like to ask (an honest question) did the waiting help you accomplish anything? When you get to the end of your life will you be glad you waited?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Subscribe: rss | email | twitter | +