We all want to improve ourselves, don't we? Here are nine simple tips to put you on the right track for personal — and career — growth in 2015.
Is your 2015 off to a good start? Here are nine ideas for making this year better than last year.
Look for something new to learn every day. Whether you are ensconced in a career you love, unemployed or toiling at a job you hate, learning is good for your brain, your mood, and is just plain fun.
Rise above the insanity. You can join the naysayers and the fearmongers or you can be the voice of reason. Looking for solutions to problems instead of freaking out is a better use of your time — and your psychic energy.
Find a mentor. A mentor is someone who’s a little more experienced than you who helps you solve problems, define goals, introduces you to possibilities you didn’t even know existed and gives you a kick in the behind when you need it. (Once you’ve found one, take good care of him or her, because this person is like gold.)
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Remember it’s not always about you. Nine times out of 10, the decisions and behavior of bosses, co-workers and hirers have more to do with their own problems and priorities than with anything you did or said.
Put energy into helping others. Introduce people who might benefit from the acquaintance, offer to be a reference, listen to a colleague’s problems and offer solutions, host a networking coffee, volunteer for a charity. Your good deeds will come back to you, tenfold.
Say thank you often. You will be uncommon — and memorable — simply by sending thank-you notes whenever they are warranted. Plus, this practice puts you in the habit of looking for the positive, and that is a good thing.
Be über-honest. Whether it’s the big stuff (lying about your qualifications) or the small (calling in sick when you’re not), applying the “is this honest?” metric to all you do and say makes life clearer and simpler.
Write down your goals. The very first step of achieving any goal is to write it down. Writing something down defines it, clarifies it, gives it power, and — eventually — helps to make it real.
Stop procrastinating. You’ll be amazed at how much simpler and more fluid everything becomes. You can’t build a life on what you’re “going to do.”
Karen Burns is the author of The Amazing Adventures of Working Girl: Real-Life Career Advice You Can Actually Use. Email her at firstname.lastname@example.org.