New Year's resolutions for your career
12th December 2019
New Year’s resolutions don’t need to just be about going to the gym or eating healthier, as it’s also the perfect opportunity to set yourself some career orientated goals. Whether you work in legal jobs in London or something entirely different, reflecting on what you have achieved in the past year and figuring out what you would like to accomplish in the upcoming months will help you start the year with a positive mindset. In this guide, we look at some of the best New Year’s resolutions you can make for your career, and some top tips that will help ensure you successfully meet them.
Build on your skills
It’s can be easy to become complacent with your skills and capabilities, however, there is always something more you can learn or better your work. Write down your biggest successes in the past year, and brainstorm how you can take them one step further. If you’re hoping to land a promotion, pay rise or bonus in the new year, then identifying which skills you need to work on in order to be successful will help you create an action plan, whether that involves taking on more work or volunteering.
We asked Molly Rees, a lifestyle blogger, for her career resolutions: “To continue progressing in my current role, building my product knowledge (I work for a party supplies company in the Marketing department) and upping my skills. I want to develop my skills as a whole so I can develop further professionally and hopefully take on new challenges, and potentially a management role.”
Rachelle, founder of her coaching and therapy company The Health and Wellness Grid, also identifies which skills she needs to develop next year: “Every year I make it my goal to enhance the training I already have, so I can serve my clients even better. I listen to their feedback, monitor their progress and use this to fuel the extra training or information I gather throughout the year. Although it's the same goal every year, it's always different because I'll be focusing on a different aspect of the services I offer.”
Improve your work-life balance
Making work your whole life can leave you feeling burnt out, so a great career resolution to make is to improve your work-life balance. Although you may love your job or often find yourself staying late in the office, setting boundaries and making sure you’re resting, socialising and taking up hobbies is equally as important. Feeling satisfied with your life outside of work can even increase your productivity during working hours, as well as improving your mental and physical health.
We also spoke to Rachael Hope, a writer and artist, who reveals her career resolutions: “I managed to quit my day job to go fully freelance back in September which was a huge achievement. Having achieved this milestone a lot sooner than expected, my New Year’s career resolution will be to prioritize self-care while steadily growing my freelancing business throughout 2020. So often we forget to rest and take care of ourselves!”
Review your social media
Even when you’re not actively seeking out a job, it’s a great idea to spend time keeping your professional social profiles up to date. With countless potential clients, employers and business professionals using social platforms, it is an excellent way to network with people in the industry, and in turn, showcasing yours and your business’ best achievements. Writing your own articles to publish on LinkedIn is another way to demonstrate your expertise and attract the attention of the right people in your field. This resolution can even lead to new clients or an exciting job offer.
Improve your commercial awareness
Although focusing on your commercial awareness seems more relevant for university students, it is a great skill to continue working on throughout your career. Set yourself a resolution to read more books, newspapers or even listen to more podcasts on your specialist subject. Feeling as though you know the latest news in your industry will mean you can arrive to work with confidence, plus, you may even impress your boss or colleagues with your new-found knowledge.
How to stick to your goals
A few weeks into January, when the New Year’s buzz has died down and people start to slack with their resolutions, it can be difficult to keep up the motivation. Listed below are some simple ways for how you can carry on working towards your goals.
Figure out the reasons why
With the New Year’s hype, it’s easy to pluck resolutions from thin air because everyone else is. However, if you truly want to stick to a goal, you need to establish the reasons why. Rachelle from The Health and Wellness Grid explains: “The most important question to ask yourself is 'why' - WHY do you want to go to the gym, eat more healthily, write a book, spend less time on social media? If someone else is telling you to do it, you think everyone else is doing it, or you don't really know, it just seems like a good idea, then you're likely to be one of the 92% who fails at their resolutions. That 'why' can become your motivation and drive when the going gets tough - which it will, we all know that!”
Break them doing into chunks
One huge resolution for the whole year can be intimidating, and after one month of feeling as though you’re no one step closer, it can be tempting to give up. Molly suggests a solution: “My top tip to help meet resolutions are to break them down into small achievable chunks. Often a resolution is a broad sweeping change, which is often like facing a huge wall you need to overcome. We all know people don't change overnight so small chunks make change happen, just over a longer. and more manageable, time frame. By breaking it down you feel like you're winning against the challenge of a resolution and slowly breaking down the 'wall of change'.”
Rachael also adds: “First of all, I think it’s important to remember that it’s ok to pick an achievable resolution. It doesn’t have to be some grand gesture. Yes, it’s great to think big and challenge yourself, but it’s the tiny consistent steps that lead to the big changes. If you set yourself a big goal or resolution, break it down into smaller chunks. Consider dividing each stage of achievement across a few months or longer.
Don’t worry about setbacks
Everyone feels unmotivated to work from time to time, it doesn’t mean you won’t accomplish your career goals for the whole year. So, one, two, or even more, setbacks during the year shouldn’t make you feel disheartened, as they are completely normal. Rachael also reminds us that it’s important to: “Always prioritise your wellbeing and be kind to yourself throughout your resolution journey. We are only human at the end of the day, and you can’t pour from an empty cup!”
Have the support of others
Having people around you to support your new career goals can make all the difference. Rachelle from The Health and Wellness Grid continues: “My tip is that you tell someone who can support you about your goals, as they may help keep you accountable. So hire a personal trainer, sign up to a slimming club or find a therapist who can help you separate your excuses from your reasons, will hold you accountable, cheer the good time and help you get back on track when you fall off the bandwagon.”
If your New Year’s resolution is to land your dream job role, make sure to contact our team who specialise in recruitment in the legal sector.