9 career-boosting New Year’s resolutions to make in 2019
Looking for a new job or a new opportunity in the New Year? These are the changes you need to make now.
For many of us, the New Year symbolizes a chance to start again and better our lives in some way. To some, that may mean working out more and eating better; to others, it might mean pursuing a new romantic relationship. For a select few, it could be actually watching something that’s been sitting in our Netflix queue for the last five years. (Hey, it’s good to have goals, regardless of what they are). But for at least a third of workers, finding a new job is a top priority this year, according to Harris Research. That’s where we can help. Whether you want a new job or just want your current job to feel like new, these small but helpful changes can help you get closer to your 2019 career goals.
Resolution 1: Find a side hustle.
Like your job, but don’t love it? Consider joining the nearly one third of workers (32 percent) who have a side gig outside of their “regular” jobs. A side hustle is a good way to make some extra cash, but it’s a great way to pursue a passion that you could possibly turn into a career one day.
Resolution 2: Stop procrastinating (as much).
For some of us, procrastinating is what we do best. Unfortunately, it’s also the reason you find yourself with only 28 minutes to finish a project you knew about five weeks ago while stress-eating a Twix bar. Put an end to procrastination in 2019 by keeping pesky distractions at bay. Use an app like Stay Focusd, Freedom or Zero Willpower, which block time-sucking websites and apps for specific time periods, or an app like BaTo.Life or Take A Five, which limit the time you spend on your favorite sites.
Resolution 3: Make time for mindfulness.
Want to feel less overwhelmed or more focused in 2019? Try adding some mindfulness to your day. It may seem new agey, but there’s a good reason many of the most successful business leaders and influencers practice daily meditation. Mindfulness has been shown to help workers stay focused, ease stress and improve cognition, leading to more productivity and satisfaction in the workplace. Try it today. Take 10 minutes to go for a walk, do some breathing exercises or meditate. Need some guidance? There’s an app for that.
Resolution 4: Make new (professional) friends.
You are probably well aware of the benefits of networking - it’s a chance to meet new people who can advise you, refer you for positions and let you know about jobs you won’t find on your own. But much like exercise, networking is something we avoid, even though we know we should. Make 2019 the year you finally stick to that networking routine, keeping in mind that, unlike exercise, networking doesn’t have to be miserable.
Resolution 5: Apply to your dream job.
Got your eye on a job but hesitant to apply because you don’t feel 100 percent qualified? You might have a better chance of landing it than you think. The tight labor market has employers struggling to find candidates who meet their every qualification; as a result, more employers are willing to hire less experienced candidates who show potential and training them on the job. So what are you waiting for? You might just land your dream job this year.
Resolution 6: Give someone else a boost.
It may sound strange, but helping others get ahead in their careers can actually do the same for you. The more you are willing to help others out - say, by offering advice, a job reference, an introduction or a public shout out - the more you establish yourself as a valuable member of your network, and the more others will be willing to help you down the road.
Resolution 7: Brag a little.
It goes against everything your mother taught you, but sometimes you need to toot your own horn if you want to get noticed at work. The key is knowing how to promote yourself so you don’t get noticed for the wrong reasons. The main thing to keep in mind is to frame your accomplishments in terms of your own career highs and professional growth - not in terms of how they make you better than others.
Resolution 8: Soften up.
Want to get a leg up in your job search? Emphasize your soft skills. According to research from SkillSurvey, the vast majority of employers (77 percent) feel soft skills (communication skills, leadership skills, interpersonal skills, etc.) are just as important in the workforce as hard skills, and 67 percent of HR managers would hire candidates with strong soft skills, even if their hard skills were weak. Feel like your skills could use some sharpening? Sites like Udemy, Coursera and edX offer courses for a range of soft skill development.
Resolution 9: Just say yes.
Take a cue from Shonda Rhimes and make 2019 your year of yes. (We’re not saying that doing so will also result in the creation of four hit TV shows, but we’re not not saying, either.) Of course, you should always carefully consider every opportunity; however, saying yes to new opportunities (especially ones that force you outside your comfort zone), gives you the chance to learn new skills, broaden your knowledge base, expand your network, build your personal brand and ultimately advance your career.