Make this New Year your best year yet
New Year’s resolutions for young professionals
That’s it, here comes the never-ending story of 31st December: together with which dress to wear on New Year’s Eve, our minds go to what we should have done better or what we will have to do in the New Year no matter what. Usually, around mid-December, New Year’s resolutions start shaping in our heads and they become a list, post-its spread on the walls of the office, a note on the mobile phone, or they simply remain as flashing self-reminders in our brains.
Personally, I have to admit to being quite fascinated by New Year’s resolutions. The end of the year is a great moment to take some time for yourself and assess your current situation, evaluate what you like and you don’t about your life, set new goals, personally and professionally. Yes, because New Year’s resolutions are like a diet, it works better if you start on Monday, and the New Year is like the Monday of Mondays – the perfect combo!
Joking aside, this is certainly a time of the year when we feel the need to take a reliable picture of the situation. It doesn’t matter if we focus more on the professional aspect rather than the personal one – actually, we all know how much the two are interlinked with each other. So, as part of this overall self-assessment, I would like to share with you what I believe are some key actions every young professional or young graduate should do in this new year ahead: eat, pray love – just in a different order…
Love yourself, first and foremost. Everything starts and ends with you, so you’d better be your own best friend and love yourself to the fullest extent.
If you just think on your feet, you will realise how many decisions in your life were influenced by other people, be they your family, partners or friends. These people certainly love you and deeply care about you, but they are not you, and they will not end up living your life. So, it is paramount that you start loving yourself up to the point where you will be able to make decisions just for your own good, without any interference from others. Asking for advice is, of course, a completely different thing: advice – when requested – is always welcome, but you should become capable of evaluating situations and making decisions based solely on your own good.
And here comes the strictly related topic of loving what you do. Have you ever stopped to think whether you actually like what you do? Is your job the one you really wanted or did it just happen to you because you were in need? Well, I am not suggesting you quit your job on 1st January, but rather you take some time to listen to yourself, and if that inner voice says that you might actually do things differently, I suggest you pay careful attention to that. Most of the decisions made can be overturned, but you are the only one with the power to do that; so, be brave and, pushed by the love for yourself and helped by the love that others have for you, start making decisions that make you truly happy.
Feed your mind and your soul. The more a person grows into a situation, in a job or in a relationship, the more this person becomes complacent. Well, my advice is simple: be curious and stay curious!
As sad as this can be, complacency is a quite normal reaction to routine. Routine is comfortable and easy, and people become convinced that nothing can go wrong and that there is not such a need for an extra effort to maintain things as they are or improve them. That’s clearly not the case: things, even the most proven, can collapse in a matter of seconds. And if sometimes we can do something to prevent that from happening, at some other times we might just have to face the consequences.
Here is where curiosity comes into play. Be curious about the world that surrounds you, learn new things and step out of your comfort zone. When things settle down, don’t believe that you already know everything, keep exploring, keep learning, stay curious. Work to improve yourself on both a personal and a professional level: learn a new skill, it will help you advance in your career; study new techniques or learn how to use a new tool, it will make your life easier; invest in personal development, it will improve your relations. If in two or three years things change, you will be sure you have done your best to stay on top of your game.
Pray to be able to maintain your promises. As a common Latin saying goes “Faber est suae quisque fortunae” – every man is the artisan of his own fortune. Be yours!
Every religion starts with faith, so have faith in yourself. Rely on the certainty that you love yourself and are capable of making the best decisions for your own good, and be confident in your abilities, in your studies and your knowledge. You are your strongest ally, but you can easily end up being your worst enemy; so, have faith in your judgment and abilities, and if you feel like you are still not quite there, work to improve yourself.
Once you are in your zone, be strong, be confident and don’t let yourself down. You are strong enough to face whatever life throws at you, so stand up tall and go conquer the best life you desire and deserve.
With my best wishes for the happiest, most joyful and fruitful New Year you can have and wish for!
by Federica Margheri