This doctor’s $$ goals for 2022

It’s 2022, and many of us wish this year was better than last. Instead of just hoping for it to happen, let’s set realistic goals and put measures in place to achieve them. Here are some of my goals:

1. Continue to invest at least 10% of my salary in retirement accounts. Investing money gives me the opportunity to grow my money. Due to inflation, money in a savings account actually loses purchasing power every day. To avoid this, I keep some money in an emergency fund and make a habit of investing the rest.

Since I know I can’t be counted on to actively put money into investment accounts every month, I make it automatic by having 10% of my paycheck automatically invested in my working 403(b) – similar to a 401(k) — before the money hits my bank account. I also have a fixed amount automatically invested in my Roth IRA.

You can do the same. How much you choose to invest is up to you, but having automatic contributions in your 403(b) or Roth IRA will allow you to start building wealth long before you retire, creating more options for you in the future. to come up.

2. Earn more money from secondary activities (increase passive income). As a senior resident physician who will begin his fellowship next year, I have yet to receive the “big bucks”. I earn more than I did as a first-year doctor, but I still haven’t received that raise.

Although I can’t wait to be paid more, I refuse to put my life on hold for a year and a half until that time comes. While many people choose to moonlight (work extra shifts as a doctor) to supplement their income, I’ve always worried that it might cause me medical burnout.

So, I tried to increase my income in a different way. For me, that means monetizing my hobbies and increasing passive income. I have earned tens of thousands of dollars as a resident doctor and encourage other doctors to consider passive income ideas or monetize some of their hobbies to increase their monthly income as well.

3. Avoid accumulating consumer debt. When I started my residency, I had a lot of credit card debt. I accumulated most of it before going to medical school. I couldn’t afford it while graduating, so I still had it when I graduated and started residency. The interest rate on my credit card was 10%, which meant that every day I had the debt, I was charged additional interest. It didn’t take me long to realize that the sooner I paid off the debt, the more money I saved in interest charges.

When I got my first job as a doctor, I prioritized major credit card payments and paid off the debt in less than a year and a half. I still have no credit card debt, so my goal is to avoid accumulating more for this new year. It can be tempting to use my credit card to book flights, pay for vacations, and buy other sale items, but resisting the urge has served me well. In 2022, I hope to continue this practice.

4. Save money for your future vacation. To avoid racking up credit card debt, one of the things I do is plan ahead. I save money in advance for big expenses like vacations, travel, holiday gifts, and friends’ weddings to avoid charging these expenses to a credit card. I also have a percentage of money deposited into an entirely different bank account each paycheck. I use the money in this bank account to save for future major expenses. The fact that these automatic deductions are paid into a separate bank account prevents me from trusting my memory or my self-control. I plan to continue this same practice in 2022.

5. Schedule time to take care of yourself. As a senior medical resident starting his postgraduate training next year, life is busy and sometimes stressful.

One of the ways I plan to reduce stress and improve my well-being is to invest in self-care. For me, that means reading more books, finding time to rest and relax, having periodic therapy sessions, and maintaining healthy eating and exercise habits. Life can be hectic, but taking the time to take care of myself and be happy is better for my mental health and my longevity.

Altelisha Taylor, MD, is a resident in family medicine.

This post appeared on Kevin MD.

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