The beginning of a new year is always a good time to reflect and identify a few professional development resolutions that you can work on to take your career to the next level. But there’s no magic in doing it in early January. It can be done at the end of a major project, quarterly, at midyear and, of course, at the end of the year.
Here are eight resolutions that you can incorporate into your career this year.
Create New Goals
You should constantly create and work towards achieving career goals. Goals keep you focused and motivated, and they hold you accountable for your own professional development. Create goals that will challenge you and push you to new marks of success. Work on refining current skills and building new ones or focus on increasing your productivity. Whatever your goal, it should be unique to you and your needs. Write your goals down to hold yourself accountable and remind yourself of how you want to grow in the new year.
Seek Feedback More Often
If you want to improve in any area, you will need continuous and productive feedback. Getting feedback from those around you, whether it comes from your boss or your colleagues, helps you to see more clearly what you are doing well and what you could be doing better. If your workplace is not giving you feedback in a routine and continuous manner, start seeking it out yourself this year. It will make you more self-aware and more effective.
Take a Break
If you are a hard worker, don’t forget to take time for yourself to rejuvenate and reenergize. Taking a break helps prevent burn-out and overstressed or overworked situations. Take some time for yourself every day, perhaps at the beginning or the end of the day, to focus on yourself and something unrelated to the professional world.
It’s easy to get sidetracked with a busy work day and lose sight of organization. But when this happens, you may find yourself losing things more often, forgetting to do important items on your to-do list, or increasing the stress you already feel. It’s important that you prioritize organization so that you can stay on top of your game and worry about the important things instead of where you left that piece of paper.
Learn a New Skill
You can never go wrong with expanding your skillset, especially in the context of your career. Develop a new skill that you can use on the job to make yourself more efficient or more knowledgeable. Is there a new technology related to what you do or new theory that you could try out? Try your hand at something new, maybe even every month, and find what works best for you.
Make New Connections
Network and meet new people this year. Continue to develop your networking skills to make it possible for you to make new connections throughout the year. You never know who you will meet, how you can help them, or how they can help you. Set a goal for how many new connections you want to make in a month and make it happen.
Read and Write Every Day
Reading and writing are both vital to professional development. They can improve your communication skills, teach you a thing or two, and increase your self-awareness. For writing, you can hold a weekly blog, find daily questions that you can respond to, or simply write about your day. The important thing is that you write. When you write every day, you can develop your writing skills. For reading, read blogs or books about your industry or professional development. The more you read, the more you can learn and improve.
When things aren’t going so great, it can be hard to keep a positive mindset. There will certainly be hardships and obstacles to overcome in the new year, but it’s important to remember to stay positive. Doing so will make it easier to solve problems, stay focused, and get back on track. Not to mention, it makes it easier to have a happier time.
With the new year, make a commitment to develop your career and work towards achieving your goals. As you start this year and head back to work, challenge yourself to grow in all that you do.
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