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  • Late Start Earner

๐Ÿ—“ Monthly Snapshot: May 2021

Note: This update was posted in July 2021.


How well did I track against my goals this month?

I plan to write a post at the end of each month that tracks my health and progress towards goals. These cover the following main categories:

  1. FI (Financial Independence) Contributions

  2. Monthly Discretionary Spending Budget

  3. Monthly Flows Breakdown

  4. Self-Care

Check out my annual goals for 2021 and a detailed overview of how I think about my monthly tracking in my January 2021 Monthly Snapshot. Alright, let's dig in!



1. FI Contributions

By the end of May 2021,



  • Roth IRA: โœ… Completed YTD goal --> 100% Complete! I maxed out my 2021 Roth IRA contribution limit in February 2021.

  • Pre-Tax 401k: โœ… YTD goal: On-Track. Decided to stick with Pre-Tax for the 2021 year while I am still filing as Single.

  • After-Tax 401k: โœ… YTD goal: On-Track --> 100% Complete! Devoting my entire paycheck allowed me to max out early.

  • Emergency Fund: โ›”๏ธ YTD goal: Delayed. My Emergency Fund has been paused.

  • FI Investment: โœ… YTD goal: On-Track.

Overall, my May 2021 FI Contribution goals were โœ… On-Track (4/5 goals). May is 5/12 = 42% into the year, and I am 60% closer to meeting my annual goals.


2. Monthly Discretionary Spending

At the outset of the year, my annual goal allowed for $20K in discretionary spending, split about equally between food and other spending. A few things have changed: I am starting to take a larger share of joint expenses and will be the single/primary earner for my household in a few months. Here's the full breakdown of spending this month, according to Mint.

- The "Travel" category here accounts for expenses towards our getaway property. The major purchase here was $2.2K on a backup generator.

- I lent my boyfriend $1.4K to pay off an old student loan, enabling him to qualify for financial aid this upcoming academic year.

- The "Food and Dining" category includes a blend of personal and joint food costs.

- "Gifts and Donations" include family birthday gifts, etc.


Overall, I was shocked by how much was spent this month ($9K is a lot!).


3. Monthly Flows Breakdown


This section breaks down all the money coming out of my checking account for the month. It may not match up all the way with money in any of the previous sections, since I sometimes pay the entire previous month's credit card bill and/or pre-pay my credit card to reduce the ultimate monthly balance.

Costs and savings for College took up a substantial amount of the pie this month! Overall I am pleased that < 40% was spent on Fixed + Spending categories.


4. Self-Care

May was a busy month, and the first month I decided to impose some serious work-life boundaries. After resetting with a week of vacation, I shifted to an early morning pattern at work, which allowed me to use uninterrupted morning time for deep work. We also spent a good amount of time with family, which was nice.

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