New Year’s resolutions are often hard to keep. The majority of the time, people aren’t able to stick to the resolutions they make – maybe because they aren’t sure what they need to do to achieve them, or because they set their expectations too high. It can be difficult and stressful.
2021 was a hard year for a lot of people. So maybe we should cut ourselves some slack, and avoid making tough, demanding New Year’s resolutions this year. Instead, why not resolve to do things that are both fun and beneficial to our careers? Author Lea McLeod has a few suggestions:
- Learn about something you’ve always been interested in that has nothing to do with your work – Have you always been interested in learning more about something random, like puppetry, interior design, classic car restoration, or hydroponic gardening? Well if so, you should go for it! Not only will it be fun and personally rewarding, it will also benefit you at work by making you more curious and creative. Plus, who knows how you might be able to apply those new skills? They might just come in handy on your next work project!
- Ask to take on a task at work that seems enjoyable (even if it’s not in your area) – Is there something that you would like to try doing at work, even though it’s not in your area of expertise? Ask your manager if you could try it out. Even if it doesn’t end up being a good fit for you, you’ll still learn something new and hopefully enjoy the experience. In addition, your manager will admire you for wanting to try new things.
- Get technical – Try to learn a new technical skill. And make sure it’s something that you’ve always been interested in learning, so that it’s an enjoyable process! Maybe you’ve always wanted to learn more about Photoshop. Or maybe there’s a new app for your phone that you’ve been dying to try. It doesn’t need to be directly related to your work. Getting more technologically-savvy is always beneficial, no matter what type of technical skill you’re learning.
- Read a few books – Try to read a few books this year that will inspire you and make you think. Choose books that really interest you, so you’ll stick with them (even if you’re not a big reader). The intellectual stimulation that comes from reading a good book will help you to be a more effective employee.
- Unplug for a weekend – For one weekend, try to unplug from all of your devices. Don’t look at your work email. Don’t look at social media. Just take a break, and spend your time doing offline activities that you really enjoy. Enjoying a weekend away from work and other responsibilities will help to prevent burnout, and will make you a more productive, engaged employee.
McLeod, L. (n.d.). 5 career-boosting New Year’s resolutions you’ll actually want to keep. The Muse. Retrieved from: https://www.themuse.com/advice/5-careerboosting-new-years-resolutions-youll-actually-want-to-keep