Christmas is over for another year and we’re hoping you all had an excellent one. It’s now time to return to work and plan for the year ahead. Did the festive period give you the time to reflect on your working life? Have you made various New Year’s resolutions surrounding not only your life in general (diets, exercise, living life to the max etc.) but also regarding your career? Perhaps You feel you need a new challenge, or a change in direction, you are going to work harder or you’re going to ease off the gas and try and relinquish a good work-life balance. Whatever you objective, take a look at the tips below to ensure you succeed in fulfilling these resolutions (and of course this can apply to both career goals and general life goals):
Make a list
It’s as simple as that, list out everything you want to achieve, adding some detail into each one. Be specific….For example, if you want to start in a new career, move sideways within your current company, undertake specific learning and development to boost your current knowledge and career, change your hours to part-time etc.
Prioritise these items
Whenever we see a long ‘to do’ list and in this case, a list of items we want to achieve in the coming year, it can be quite daunting and looking at it on paper you may feel like you’ll never be able to achieve it. So here it’s really important to prioritise your goals so that you don’t lose focus and motivation. Which goal is most important to you? Do you have to achieve one goal before moving on to the next? For example you may need to undertake some specific training before progressing your career and going for that promotion. Keep them realistic and concentrate on one at a time.
Break larger goals into bite-sized chucks
You may actually end up avoiding some goals as they just seem too overwhelming. However, if you sensibly break these goals down into smaller tasks they will soon appear more digestible and they won’t feel so daunting and as a result, you will be more likely to tackle them head on. For example, if a marketing assistant wanted to progress in their role and undertake the Chartered Institute of Marketing Diploma, then instead of looking at this as a whole, you could break it down into modules and timeframes and further break those modules down into coursework and exams. This means it won’t seem as much of an insurmountable task as it did previously.
How can you achieve your goals?
Have you tried to achieve this goal before but haven’t quite managed it or been given the right opportunities? If so, think of different routes and ways to get you to your end goal. For example, if you fancy a career change within your current company, what did you do to try and achieve this. Did you apply for a role and get turned down? If so, why not think about some training in this area so you’re skills are up to scratch or even requesting a secondment for a day a week for a set amount of time, ensuring your gaining some on-the-job experience.
For big changes, we all need a little support along the way, especially from family, friends and work colleagues. Discuss your plans with them and when you’re feeling demotivated and lacking willpower then enlist their support and you’ll soon get back on track.
However big or small your goal is, celebrate any successes you have along the way – not necessarily just the big successes, but all the small bits as well. Document these successes as well against your original timeline list and each time you look at this you’ll remind yourself how well you’ve done.
Don’t worry about setbacks
If something doesn’t go to plan, then don’t worry, this doesn’t mean these goals aren’t achievable. And if you mentally prepare yourself for them then you’ll be more likely to move past them and go on to achieve them ultimately. We all have setbacks in life and actually if you turn this around, it can actually make us far more determined to achieve what we set out for. And, remember not to beat yourself up for lapses. Learn from any mistakes and keep ploughing forward. Never give up.
There’s huge correlation between how we feel at work and our physical and mental well-being. Of course it can be a catch 22 situation whereby if our health is poor, then work will become increasingly harder. However, if we are not happy or fulfilled at work, individuals are bored with their duties or not rewarded appropriately, then this can obviously have a negative effect on our general health and well-being.
So as you can see, it’ so important to ensure you’re happy and fulfilled at work and yes this is part responsibility of the company but we are the only ones responsible for our dreams, desires and goals. Think about what you really want from this year, make a plan and go for it. Fulfilling our dreams takes time and patience and of course hard-work.