Career tips

These are the best (job) resolutions – including implementation

Some people consciously boycott the tradition of good intentions. The frustration is too great that these projects always fail anyway, and therefore it is easier not to want to change anything – right? Not correct! Because further development is important, be it as a personality or at work. Everyone should therefore have short, medium, and long-term goals to get the most out of themselves and to be motivated to get up in the morning at all. The turn of the year is an ideal opportunity to put your existing goals to the test:

  • Which goals have I achieved and which not (yet)?
  • Why didn’t I reach you?
  • Are they still up to date?
  • How have my goals changed?
  • What new goals do I have for the coming year?

So use the end of the year to review the past months and reconsider your resolutions for the new year.

Which resolutions are useful in your job?

So the answer to whether New Year resolutions make sense at all is “yes”. However, it depends on the nature of your goals. Some plans do not really help you personally or professionally and thus only rob you of unnecessary energy. This is especially true for extrinsically motivated goals. Let’s say you are bullied for allegedly being too fat. If you lose weight now – just to prove something to the others – that won’t make you happier and the project will probably not be crowned with success in the long term. If, on the other hand, you want to lose weight for your own reasons, for example for your health or your well-being, this resolution makes perfect sense, and achieving this goal will make you happier and more self-confident. This is just one example of many, as weight loss is at the top of their list of resolutions for many people each year. If you are now looking for good resolutions for the next year, ask yourself what you really want and why. For example, what do you want to achieve in your job? What do you want to create as a personality? Where do you want to be at the end of the year? Which resolutions are really useful and which are not depends on your intrinsic motivation. You shouldn’t do anything to prove something to other people or yourself – but strive for happiness and health. For example, for some people this means downshifting to have more family time, for others it means transportation. Some want to improve the world and protect the climate through their work or put a smile on people’s faces. The others want to drive technological progress and develop as specialists in their field. The possibilities are almost endless.

Make Your Job Search Your Top New Year's Resolution

Examples of really good goals

You have to find out for yourself what will make you happier. Besides, do not overdo it with the goals, but take one or two, but no more than three to five good resolutions for the coming year. Think outside the box and ask yourself to what extent you can do something good for others – for example, your family, your friends, society as a whole, or the environment and animals. So your list of goals could look something like this:

  • Professional progress into a management position.
  • More rest periods to relax to reduce stress.
  • At least one day of “family time” per week – without any work.
  • Riding a bike to work for more exercise and environmental protection.
  • Overcome your fears.

Your good resolutions can and should also relate to your job, but not only. Many changes inside you will have an impact on the job anyway because there are numerous interactions there. For example, if you are happier, more confident, and healthier, you will perform better and become more successful at work. So create your own list.

Putting resolutions into action – but how?

For many people, it is actually not a problem to develop good resolutions at all. After all, you have many wishes as to how you can “optimize” your life or yourself. However, it is often more difficult to filter these projects and reduce them to the few, really important goals. So this is the challenge you will face at the end of the year. If you have finally developed a maximum of five good resolutions, you “only” have to put them into practice. But this is exactly where most people fail year after year. So what can you do to prevent this from happening to you (again)?

  • Define your goals as specifically as possible. So don’t just plan on losing weight, instead plan three evenings a week for the gym and make an appointment with a nutritionist (as soon as these things are fully possible again). Think about the way and not the goal from the start.
  • It is best to use the so-called SMART formula to make your resolutions as tangible as possible. Define what you want to achieve by when, what your motivation is, and how you will measure your success. Enter specific dates in your calendar to check your progress and goal achievement.
  • Set intermediate goals for yourself. Would you like to take on a management position in the coming year? Then write down, for example, that you will complete the current project by February, that you will take a further training course in leadership in March, that you will ask for an interim report in April and that you would like to take on a leadership role in May. Of course, pay attention to whether these goals are realistic in your current position. For example, if you don’t get the promotion you want by June or at least don’t have the prospect of getting the promotion you want, look around for a new job from July. A concrete goal can look like this or something like that.

An extra tip at the end

Finally, you should understand why the matter of good intentions is often so difficult: This is due to the reward system in your brain, because it always favors immediate reward over those in the future – for example, consuming chocolate now instead of better well-being in the future and the sofa after work, instead of getting ready for distance learning, or something like that. So what you have to do to successfully implement your resolutions in the coming year is to “trick” your brain. Reward yourself for keeping your resolutions. If you study for two hours after work, you can then cuddle up on the sofa with ice cream and watch an episode of your favorite series. Or if you actually go to the gym three times a week, treat yourself to a day of relaxation in the sauna on Saturday. Find an individual reward that motivates you enough to make your resolutions come true. The good news is: You only have to endure this for around 66 days to “trick” your brain, and then new connections have formed. Your changed routine has become a habit and is suddenly much easier. On the other hand, old routines have been forgotten. Also, you will probably already see the first minor or major successes, which show you that you are on the right path and thereby additionally motivate you. So take just one resolution instead of too many and follow it with discipline. In the end, you will not only put your resolutions into practice but also have more willpower and self-confidence – also for new goals in the future. Good luck!