If you’re looking to make a change this New Year—whatever feeds your soul and piques your interest—it’s smart to prepare with a little extra effort and direction.
Whether you’re looking for an industry change, company change, or something else, you need to understand and commit to these four points.
Get Clear on What You Want You’re not sure what a new job looks like, but you know you’re not happy and you’re ready for a change. Now what? “You need to get clear on what you do want. It can take some digging, talking to people you trust, and refocusing on YOU as your #1 priority,” says Liz Traines, a career coach and IIN alum.
“I’m not saying drop all other responsibilities, but as new commitments arise, ask yourself if committing to this will help you get clearer on your career journey. If it doesn't, you may need to say no,” she says.
A few tricks to stay dedicated and reach clarity? “Dedicating time to self-care, journaling, stepping outside your comfort zone in some way, or doing things that sound fun and meaningful all can be ways to start figuring out what you love doing and how you can get more of it,” she says.
Ask Yourself: “Why Do I Want This?” “Connecting with the reason(s) why a goal is so important to you keep you going when times get tough. Go as deep as you can,” says Traines.
Asking the following questions may help spark change: -How long have you wanted this career change? -Why is this change meaningful? -What vision do you have for your life once you’ve made the transition? -How does this change align with your personal core values and strengths?
Once you’ve figured out your why, think about the how and create action steps for turning those dreams and thoughts into a bright reality.
Make a Plan That next step—plan! “You know what you're looking for, now you need a plan to get there. Dedicate chunks of time to brainstorm how you can execute the change,” says Traines.
Ask yourself, “Who do you need help from? What current commitments can you delegate or let go of? What’s your timeline? Is it realistic? Do you need to save money or make any investments in yourself or your education? You need time and energy to accomplish this goal,” says Traines.
Give yourself enough time to really come up with a solid direction, so it’ll limit mishaps and expedite the path to success.
Get to Work! “Similar to making the plan, make a daily/weekly/monthly commitment to executing your plan. Ask yourself what obstacles and fears may get in your way. Make a promise that fear will not stop you from moving forward,” says Traines.
And don’t let defeatist thoughts get in your way. Reconnect with your “why” when these tough times happen and know that the best things come from challenges.
“Remember that this is your growth journey, no one else’s, so while you can look to others for inspiration, you are not allowed to compare yourself to them. Instead of focusing on the immense challenge still ahead of you, reflect on and celebrate the progress you are making, no matter how small it may seem. Life's too short to not enjoy the process,” says Traines.
What exciting plans do you have in store for the New Year? Please share below!