This time of year, we are inundated with ideas on how to improve our lives. From drinking more water to unplugging more often, there’s no doubt that starting the New Year on a new path to wellness is a good idea. But what about starting the year on a new path to success, one that’s proactive, and nurtures your continued professional growth?
Here are the 5 career resolutions we want to challenge you with in 2017. From daily habits to yearly goals, do these 5 things and we can almost guarantee you’ll end the year on top.
Daily: Wake up 30 minutes earlier
But, counterintuitive as it may sound, don’t use it for work. Instead, wake up and use the first 30 minutes of your day to meditate, journal, exercise, cook a delicious breakfast — anything that tells your subconscious you value your health and well-being, but also feels productive and restorative. You’ll be energized, more focused, and ultimately better able to tackle the challenges of your work day.
Weekly: Ask your boss if there’s anything you can do to make their life easier
Unless you’re running the company, chances are you report to someone, and even though we usually assume our bosses have their ducks in line, chances are there’s something extra they could use your help with. Proving you’re willing to go a little bit beyond the job description (within reason) to make your superior’s job easier will teach you knew skills, and paint you as a hardworking, reliable, and an indispensable resource at your company — qualities that just might earn you your next promotion.
Monthly: Reach out to someone in your LinkedIn network
It’s easy to neglect your LinkedIn network when you’re not actively seeking a new position, but nurturing your professional connections is one of the most valuable practices you can do for your career. Send a message to a past colleague, teacher, or friend and see if there’s an opportunity for you to help them out — they’ll appreciate your thoughtfulness and generosity, and chances are, they’ll be more likely to return the favour in the future.
Quarterly: Read the biography of a woman whose career you admire
Reading the stories of women who have already made it is an effective way to get inspired and begin to chart out your own career path. Their struggles and the lessons they learned along their unique route to success will help you navigate your own setbacks, and persevere when things aren’t flowing smoothly. Knowing that someone else had a rocky beginning or middle but still made it to a fruitful and satisfying end is sometimes all it takes to stay motivated. We especially like this one, 100 Accomplished Black Canadian Women. Stay tuned for the Spring 2017 issue of Women of Influence magazine for a list of more of our favourites!
Yearly: Have the “money talk”
Yes, it’s awkward, and if you’re like many professional women (and men, too) you may gauge your worth based on the salary you’re offered, rather than what you deserve. This year, instead of settling, do some research, summarize your skills and accomplishments, and build that case for why you deserve a raise. The worst that can happen is you get a no. The best? You get more money! It’s always worth it to ask.