Do you find yourself making thoughtless resolutions at the end of each year, or do your resolutions inspire the kind of life that you want to have for yourself?
For many people, New Year’s resolutions are mindless thoughts that they write down on paper, checking the boxes of some of them, only to arrive at the next new year looking down the same road they faced before.
How much thought do you give your New Year’s resolutions? Are you creating resolutions that will cultivate the kind of professional and personal life that you want for yourself in the new year?
As you sit down to think about your resolutions for 2017, consider adding one or two of these to your list.
- Get Organized
I’ve always been a firm believer in the saying, “A clear space is a clear mind”. If you really want to be able to get on the right track with your career change in the new year, it’s time to focus on clearing your spaces in order to be able to focus on your goals.
By “clear space”, I am referring to all spaces, not just where you sit down to work. Look at your relationships, how you’re spending your time, and even your digital clutter. Clear out that which no longer serves you and the goals that you want to achieve. If you have negative relationships in your life, consider ending them or spending less time in those relationships. If you’re spending more time out eating and drinking, think about reducing the amount of time you spend doing those things so that you can focus on your goals. If you are overcome with so much digital clutter that you cannot find simple documents or files on your computer or hard drive, spend some time cleaning up your digital files and get rid of what you no longer need.
Once you have a clear space to work with—physically, emotionally, and digitally—you will be surprised at how much simpler certain projects and tasks become.
- Plan for the Career You Want
How can you expect to move forward and make changes to your career in the new year if you have no plan in place? One of your resolutions… One of your FIRST resolutions to tackle in the new year, needs to be planning for the career that you WANT.
This resolution involves you making the time to sit down and get really clear on how you envision your career and how you’re going to make it happen. It’s likely that you are interested in making a change to your career because you are unhappy with your present work situation. Get creative—think about the type of career that will allow you to pursue the things you are passionate about. How will that career look alongside the personal life you want for yourself? Figure it out and define what your career will look like, professionally and personally.
Maybe you already know what you want your career to look like. That’s great! But the big game changer in this resolution is creating your master plan—your personal roadmap to your new career.
To encourage and motivate yourself in getting started on this resolution in the beginning of the new year, get a good planner that you will actually use—it can be a physical planner or it can be a digital planner. The important thing is to find what works best for you and pick something that you will look forward to using. If you have a planning tool that you find enjoyable to use, you will be more eager to plan and follow through.
- Invest in Yourself
Investing in yourself is important if you want to see changes to your career in 2017. Quite often, investing in ourselves is something that we give the least priority in our plans, and it’s often one of the most forgotten or postponed resolutions. Sometimes this is because we believe we don’t have the time or that we don’t have the money.
Resolve to make the time and find the money to invest in yourself in the new year. Perhaps you should remove certain things or activities from your life which are no longer serving you—choosing not to purchase that $4 cup of coffee each day, or deciding to stay in for dinner. There are ways you can find the time and the money to invest in yourself.
If you resolve to invest in yourself and truly hold yourself accountable to this, you will see a different you—personally and professionally—at the close of 2017.
- Believe in Yourself
Do you believe in yourself? Think about it for a moment and really question yourself. Do you have the belief that you can create the career you want? Or are you doubtful, finding yourself listening to the naysayers convincing you why it can’t be done or why it’s impossible?
There will always be doubters; there will always be someone waiting around the corner to tell you that what you want to do is impossible. Even if you provide examples of others who have done similar things in past and are now millionaires; I promise you that someone will be there to tell you it was fine for that person, but would never work for you.
Let me tell you a little secret about these naysayers. They believe it’s impossible for you because they do not believe in themselves! If it’s impossible for them, why should it be possible for you? Don’t let their negativity and doubt get in your way! It is possible for you and as long as you keep your eye on the ball, put in the effort, and believe in yourself, you can make it happen!
If you struggle with believing in yourself, this should be your top resolution in the new year. It will change your life in ways you never thought possible.
- Take Care of Yourself
If you are healthy and energized, you will notice that you are more likely to achieve and reach your career goals. This is actually a really big part of your success in life—personally and professionally. Yet, it seems to be the most difficult kind of resolution to follow through with.
How many times have you resolved to be a healthier you in the new year? Maybe it all started out great in the beginning—you were hitting the gym every day, eating heaps of veggies and fruits, and getting in eight hours of sleep each night. Then, suddenly, you were so overwhelmed with life that you stopped making time for the gym. Next thing you know, you find yourself sitting in front of the boob-tube every night after work, chowing on your frozen dinner with a big side of potato chips, downing a bottle of wine, and getting in a whopping five hours of sleep before having to start another day.
If this sounds anything like you and your health resolutions in the past, don’t be embarrassed. I promise that you are not the only one who has gone through the drudgery of this scenario.
There is a better way to follow through with this resolution. Start out small. There’s no need to go full force into it, 100% healthier and more active right from the start. As a matter of fact, that’s a sure-fire way to fail. If you aren’t familiar with Leo Babauta and his philosophy around creating effective habits, I encourage you to go check out his site, Zen Habits, as well as his book, Essential Zen Habits: Mastering the Art of Change. If you are serious about making this a resolution for the new year, take some time to learn how to build effective, long-lasting habits.
Now, I’m not saying that you have to commit to all of these resolutions in order to have a successful career change in 2017. I’m simply saying that if you want to set meaningful resolutions that can have a positive impact in your professional and personal life, these are some options to consider.
What are your New Year’s resolutions and how will they promote the success of your career in 2017?