Well, this post isn't as exciting as the title makes it sound. My net worth did not grow in 2008. In fact, it is down 3.09%.
My goal was to grow my net worth by 25%, which was a lofty goal to begin with, but I never thought I would fail this spectacularly.
What happened? Well, that's obvious. The market happened. Overall, the value of my investments dropped by almost 30%. That really hurts when I consider that I contributed to my Roth IRA and TSP this year. (Overall, my TSP grew well, my Roth... did not. I will have to seriously which funds to invest in this year.)
That said, I was a good little saver! My savings increased a significant amount, and I will continue to keep that in savings accounts and CDs. One thing that helped was getting a roommate mid-year. I am hoping she will want to stay after she finishes grad school in May. I know I can always get a new roommate, but this one is working out so well, and I have to admit, the idea of bringing in a random roommate from Craigslist scares me a little bit. So if she decides to move, I will have some decisions to make.
Even with the overall loss, I'm really happy with 2008. I made some very smart spending decisions and became a much more frugal person than I have ever been. I certainly don't feel like I'm scrimping on things, but I'm spending my money on things I truly want and need, not just something that catches my eye. I'm amazed at how easy a transition it's been. Sure, there have been slipups, but I don't feel deprived, and I'm clearly managing to put away more money than I thought possible.
Here's to an even better 2009. Perhaps even one with returns in the black!