Mid-year review

This entry is more for me than anyone who stumbles upon it, as I wanted to do a mid-year review of some life resolutions which will some day become habit. I'd give myself an arbitrary grade of B-, as good progress has been made in some areas while others are untouched. Below is each area with its respective grade:

- Pare down: F. I'm preparing for an October and November barrage of eBay activity, but that doesn't help in the interim.

- Make running a habit: A. The real evidence is that when I pack running gear on a business trip, it gets used; I now run at least twice a week and more if the schedule allows. I've shed over 15 pounds and moved from "Overweight" to "In Normal Range" according to the WHO and CDC, which defines overweight as having a body-mass-index/BMI of 25 or more. A good BMI calculator can be found here.

- Travel more for leisure: B. Gasoline over $4 a gallon doesn't help, but we've been on three trips so far this year with a big vacation scheduled in early December.

- Reduce exposure to media/news: B. I'm a political news junkie, but you won't find me at a methadone clinic as long as I can get my fix of The Daily Show with Jon Stewart and The Colbert Report.

- Invest more in community: D. It's not what I originally had in mind, but right now this investment in community is through time and money directed at helping to get Senator Obama elected President.

- Manage ADHD rather than having it manage me: A. Just after the first of the year I switched from Dexedrine to Vyvanse, and it's much more effective with zero side effects.

- Simplify investments: B. I'm down to just four individual stocks considered long-term holds (DIS, MRK, SHPGY, and MSFT). All other holdings are in the form of exchange-traded funds. Unfortunately I'm still down 14% since the first of the year compared to a 12.7% decline in the Dow Jones and a 13% decline in the S&P 500. Fortunately the rental properties are all occupied and throwing off good cash flow.