3 Tips to Help You Start Something Big in the New Year

Review your professional wins and setbacks from the prior year before setting new goals for this one.  Image: Lindsay Singleton

Review your professional wins and setbacks from the prior year before setting new goals for this one. Image: Lindsay Singleton

It’s that time of year you know. The beginning. The start to something big or at least something different at work. Or, your career might be the same old same old in 2019. Your Office Mom has some advice for you. After all, New Year’s resolutions are an implied requirement and have been for eons, literally since the Babylonians and the Romans.

Before you cast the idea aside, consider what change in your career or work life (small, medium or large) could be a catalyst for professional and personal transformation. That may sound daunting, but you probably already know the answer. You may have even vowed to make a change, but never got around to it, or gave up. New Year's Resolutions can seem gimmicky but use this opportunity to develop the best you. Ask yourself:

  • What can I do differently to be better in my work life?

  • What is meaningful to me in this place and time relative to my career?

Whatever goals you determine for 2019, do some additional reading. There are insightful, motivating articles on changing your habits and even looking at the process through a different lens. In my opinion, the answer to success (i.e., starting new goals) isn’t all that complicated, although it takes a lot of work and determination

Here are three tips that can help you identify your resolutions for 2019 and be successful in achieving them!

1. Be realistic

If you're like many people you try to do too much, too fast under a tight timeline, that's totally unrealistic. You can only do so much. So, figure out what your priorities are being sure to factor in what else is going on in your life. Did you know that by mid-February 80% of new year resolutions are broken? I think it’s because people try to do too much, fade too fast and end up discouraged.

Remember there are 365 days in the year, 52 weeks, 12 months or 4 quarters depending on how you look at it. Regardless, you don’t have to try to take on everything at once. Consider staggering the launch of your goals, so one is somewhat figured out or under control before starting to tackle the next one.

2. Be specific

Whatever you’re seeking to change in the new year, will require deliberate, specific action. Whether it’s getting healthy, landing a new job or being a better friend, you need to lay it all out in granular, OCD detail. Vague generalities just won’t cut it. What are you going to do, how are you going to do it and when? From there you can map a specific action plan and add deadlines to learn more about being successful or performing the activities.

3. Don't give up

Even when you feel like quitting, don’t. If you miss your self-imposed deadlines for three months, don’t give up. Think about why you want to quit. Think about why you’re missing deadlines. What is getting in the way of your success?

  • Decide if the resolution is still relevant. If not, decide what is. Modify the original goal to make it more meaningful and start from there.

  • If you got off track and missed milestones, set new ones, factoring in why you missed the deadlines the first time. Be realistic about how much you can accomplish and add reminder dates to keep an eye on things.

What are your thoughts? Anything to add?

Happy New Year! Good luck during 2019.