The start of the New Year is symbolic of new beginnings, second chances, and “do overs.” And, by the way, there is no shortage of do’s and don’ts for creating New Year’s resolutions. The New Year is also a good time to reflect, reevaluate and renew career options and opportunities. However, the decision to start job searching, revamping old job search methods, going back to school, or taking a certification course all require a plan.
But, coming up with a plan is only half the battle…sticking to a plan is where the real work comes into play. I have listed below a few lessons I have learned through the years that have been instrumental in helping to me to stick with my career and life goals plan. I hope they can bring you much success in your endeavors.
Step 1: Stop procrastinating. One of the biggest barriers that keep most people from reaching their goals is the desire to relax and do something fun instead working hard. Once you get used to procrastinating it is difficult to snap yourself out of it, so putting in some work and effort to change this habit will certainly be beneficial.
Step 2: Face your fears and insecurities. You will be surprised how this particular point is masked beneath our New Year’s resolutions, but fear and insecurity are often a result of other problems that need to be addressed. Focusing on overcoming your fears, rather than surviving and controlling them on a daily basis, will enable you to get rid of a lot of insecurities you may have.
Step 3: Get at least eight hours of sleep. With so many gadgets; theater sound and flat screen TV’s, computers, smartphones, tablets and all sorts of gadgets with glowing lights and beeping alerts, vying for our attention, it can be hard to get enough sleep at night. Yet, this is one thing we associate with our ability to function at 100% and often take for granted. According to research, sleep and mood are closely connected; poor or inadequate sleep can cause irritability and stress, while healthy sleep can enhance well-being.
Step 4: Get in shape. Losing weight is the top resolution for Americans, and combined with the goal to “exercise more” and “stay fit and healthy” it is something that over a third of the population wishes to achieve. It is easy to start an exercise and diet program, and quite another to stick with it. The trick is to find one that fits your personality, lifestyle, and health plan. That way, you are more likely to stick with the plan and achieve long term results.
Step 5: Meet new people. It is so easy to get stuck in a rut, we usually end up staying at home most of the time or staying within our sphere of familiarity with friends and family. We miss out on a lot of interesting opportunities for networking, developing leadership skills, and learning how to work in a team, when we are unwilling to get outside the box. Meeting new people can be beneficial to your mental well-being and help your career – so don’t be afraid to get out and meet new people.
Step 6: Reinvent yourself. If you find yourself unhappy or not feeling fulfilled by what you do, perhaps it is time to reassess and make some serious changes in your life. Since we spend so much of our life working, it is important to choose a career that will meet your goals and enhance your skills and abilities. Reinventing yourself can give you a whole new perspective on life, challenge you in areas you never imagined and take you in directions you never dreamed possible.
May the Year of 2021 bring you much joy and success as you learn and use these tools to assist you with “Sticking to the Plan.”
Thelisa Lavergne is Manager of the Regional (Texas Gulf Coast) Navigator team for Workforce Solutions. She specializes in providing training and education to the Gulf Coast community, career staff offices, and employers in assisting individuals with disabilities. She brings with her over 10 years of experience and expertise working in the nonprofit industry serving Houston’s disadvantaged community; individuals and families experiencing homelessness, victims of domestic abuse, and individuals and families experiencing hunger. However, her greatest contribution to Workforce Solutions is her compassion, commitment, and dedication to serving others. She holds a M.A. in Organizational Management, a B.S. in Training and Development, B.S. in Counseling, and a Certification as a Personal Fitness Trainer.