As Ive read through my social media pages over the last couple of days, I’ve seen so many people post about their New Years Resolutions, and it got me thinking about why so many people do this.

New Years Resolutions have various religious origins ……..

  • People made promises to their gods at the start of each year that they would return borrowed objects and pay their debts.
  • The Romans began each year by making promises to the god Janus, the month of January is named after him.
  • Medieval knights took the “peacock vow” at the end of Christmas each year to re-affirm their commitment to chivalry.
  • During Judaism’s New Year, Rosh Hashanah, they reflect upon their wrongdoings over the year and both seek and offer forgiveness.

Instead of setting goals that you are likely to break within a couple of weeks like Dry January, losing weight, exercising 4 times a week etc, why not look at setting goals to improve yourself and your career that are more achievable. Here are some that you could look to follow…..

Say ‘yes’ more

It’s always tempting to turn down opportunities due to a fear of failing or looking silly. However, turning down these experiences could stop you from gaining valuable expertise as well as leading you to miss out on skills that could be beneficial for your career. Say Yes more and you will have lots of things to look forward to this year that could help improve you and your skills.

Make your LinkedIn profile stand out

Good resolutions start with simple steps – like making sure your LinkedIn profile is up-to-date and showing you off in the best possible way. You’re more likely to be hired by someone in your professional network, so while this is a good move for anyone looking to improve their career, it’s particularly helpful for those seeking a new job. If a career move is for you, once you’ve refreshed your profile, you can use LinkedIn to see who is hiring within your network.

Attend a professional event

Networking events are the perfect chance to connect with other professionals within your industry. If you dont want to start with these, you could attend a professional learning and development event instead to improve your skill set or your job. Although they can seem a daunting experience, you’ll soon gain confidence after attending a few events.

Find a mentor

Why not learn from someone who has already been in your shoes? The right mentor can give you a foot in the door into new opportunities, provide strategic support and guidance, boost your confidence, and help you to stand out from your competition. If you don’t already know of anyone who could be a suitable mentor, then why not explain that you’re looking for one on LinkedIn and see who comes back to you.

Improve your work-life balance

We talk about work-life balance a lot, but it’s important to consider whether you’re actually putting it into action and making it a priority. When you deprive yourself of time off, it not only harms your mental health but also your job. If you’re the type of person that stays late at work every day, or misses family events to stay at work, then a better work-life balance is something you urgently need to work on this year. Without a good work-life balance, you’re more likely to experience burnout, which impacts on your productivity at work and in turn, on your career progression.

Read a career book

Whether the book is focused on your specific industry, or a completely different field that you’re looking to gain more knowledge in, there’s definitely no harm in picking up a good book and obtaining new knowledge. Reading a book does take time, so set yourself a goal to read a new book each quarter if this is better-suited to your schedule.

If you are looking for advice on changing career, get in touch with our team here. You can also use our CV writing guide if you are struggling with writing your CV at the moment.