And just like that, 2021 has come and gone. It was the first full year of The Twenty Percent too. Like many of us, I’m not too sorry to see the back of it. While 2020 was bad, 2021 brought more anxiety, uncertainty, and confusion than I felt able to deal with.
Fortunately, I surprised myself and made it through, relatively unscathed. I’ve certainly had some wins this year too. From being promoted at work, to finally being able to see my boyfriend again after 7 months – 2021 has had many positives in both my professional and personal life.
As we look forward to the New Year, I thought it apt to take a moment to look back at some of the highs and lows of the past 12 months.
I also want to thank anyone reading this. Without your support and interest, The Twenty Percent would still be simply an idea in a notebook.
- The Twenty Percent in review
- My favourite blog posts
- The top features
- My first full year freelancing
- How my finances fared in 2021
- What’s in store for 2022
The Twenty Percent in review
I’ve published 60 blog posts this year. It’s not quite as many as I would have liked at the start of the year, but I am happy I have stuck to a relatively consistent schedule and produced content on a weekly basis.
I know I haven’t been as organised as I could have been, which is definitely something I will be working on next year. With a clear plan, I should be able to stick to a more regular posting strategy and deliver more finance knowledge and tips your way!
With every post, I am starting to get a stronger idea of my own voice and where The Twenty Percent is going. I have big plans for the blog and am excited to see them come into fruition (hopefully!).
My favourite posts from The Twenty Percent
Out of these 60 blog posts, I have a few favourites. I will share my top three posts below.
5 sustainability tips to save you money – Climate change is such a serious threat and needs to be addressed seriously. I was glad to be able to share some simple tips we can all make that won’t just save the planet but will save your bank balance too!
How to get paid to watch football – This is a slightly different post to my normal content, but I really enjoyed thinking outside the box and finding new ways for you all to make money. It’s also proven to be one of my most popular posts of the year!
Chesham and Amersham by-election – The Liberal Democrats – I also interviewed all the candidates in my local by-election. The result turned out to be a shock, so I was even more pleased to have interviewed the eventual winner.
The top features on The Twenty Percent
I’ve also been lucky enough to be featured on a range of sites, podcasts and channels.
From the London Institute of Business and Finance to Times Radio, I’ve been able to share my love of finance far and wide. I really enjoy these opportunities and hope to be able to increase my collaborations in 2022.
I was also runner up in the UK Money Bloggers Awards for the Best New Money Blog. This was a great achievement and really spurred me on to keep working so one day I might be able to win one of the main categories!
My first full year freelancing
2021 was my first full year of working freelance, alongside my day job. I’ve been wanting to start freelancing for a while but had always been too scared to try.
Putting those fears behind me was one of the best decisions I have ever made. In December 2020, I sent my first invoice for £50. This felt like a huge step. Now, I’m regularly invoicing between £600 and £1000 a month.
My aim for 2022 is to invoice at least £1000 a month. I believe this is possible, but I will need to be organised and committed to make it happen as this amount of money requires a substantial amount of time and effort.
How my finances fared in 2021
With all this extra work and a promotion, my finances have felt a boost.
We spent the first half of the year essentially in a lockdown. Although mentally very difficult, this was good for my finances. It’s hard to spend money when there isn’t much to spend it on!
I’ve increased my investments significantly and plan to keep doing this. The markets have been up and down, so I’ve been avoiding looking at my portfolios too much as I know this could put me off. I’m investing for the long term and know that over time I should reap the benefits.
What’s in store for 2022
I’ve spilt my 2022 goals into professional and personal goals.
I’ve already hinted at some of these goals earlier in the post.
Firstly, I want to properly monetise my blog. This is something I’ve been apprehensive about doing for a while, as I don’t want to come across as salesy or pushy. My primary goal is – and always will be – to educate and help young people with their money.
I also aim to invoice at least £1000 a month in freelance work. This is a big goal, but I am confident I can work towards achieving it.
Finally, I hope to get another promotion in my day job. I’m working really hard and enjoying the work, so am hopeful I can achieve this.
My stretch goal is to get on the property ladder this year. It will be a tough ask as – even with some very generous family help – I am still quite a long way off. However, I am determined to maximise my monthly income to improve my chances of getting approved for a mortgage. I will also save and invest as much as possible to increase my deposit.
Fitness remains important to me. I am determined to run a sub 20 5k this year and a half marathon in under 1hr40. Setting fitness goals also helps me prioritise my health and wellbeing and make sure I take regular breaks from work – something we all need to do!
Finally, I hope to give myself a break and be kind to myself. I spend so long focusing on my future goals that sometimes I forget to live in the moment. I will take a break each day to appreciate the good things in life.
Happy New Year to all my followers, subscribers and readers. May your 2022 be filled with nothing but positivity, except for your Covid tests – I hope they stay negative!
Don’t forget to follow me on social media @Katie20Percent to keep up to date with all my latest posts.
If you enjoyed this post on my 2021 year review, please like it and share it on social media or with your friends. How did your 2021 go? Are you happy with your progress or have you set big goals for 2022? Let me know in the comments below!