In a few weeks it’ll be the Winter Solstice, marking the middle of winter. Traditionally a time of feasting and dancing to celebrate the longest night of the year, it can still be an opportunity to celebrate but why not use it as a chance to celebrate your career instead? If it feels too crazy before Christmas to fit it in then schedule it for the time between Christmas and New year when there’s not so much going on. All you need is 5 minutes and a notebook and pen and then you’re ready for your Career Review.
How can a Career Review help?
Think of this as an opportunity to be in control of your career, to avoid drifting and be proactive in getting what you want. It’s also an opportunity to celebrate what you have achieved, which we often forget to do, instead focusing on what we haven’t done. Plus you can learn from your experiences in the year which will increase your career resilience and adaptability.
Your Midwinter Career Review is a fantastic chance to set your intention for next year and start 2018 with clarity about what you want from your career. If you need help with this read my Career Roadmap blog
What to do in your 5 Minute Career Review
My 5 minute career review will give you chance to take a moment for reflection, ask yourself some searching questions and refocus your energy for next year.
Firstly find some quiet space where you won’t be disturbed, maybe think about being somewhere different such as your favourite cafe, then grab a notebook and a pen, and you’re ready.
Reconnect to the career goal you set yourself at the beginning of the year and answer the following questions – make a note of your answers:
- What am I proud of in my career?
- What do I feel was successful?
- What were my major challenges in the last year?
- What have I learnt in that time both personally and professionally?
- Who have I enjoyed working with and why?
- What do I want for my career in 2018?
The last question is really important as it gives you chance to focus on the next 12 months and what you need to do to realise your career goal whether that is changing careers or jobs, getting promotion or working on some new projects.
How to get motivated
- Don’t get hung up on a SMART goal (they can make it a bit dull) instead phrase your goal in a way that is clear and motivating for you. Focusing towards something usually works best, for example ‘I want to be in a challenging more senior role in a larger company where I can learn x skills by the end of the year’.
- Keep your goal alive. Find what works for you but consider whether an image, a word, or a quote can represent your goal, keep it active and in your line of sight. So often we set a goal and then it gathers dust in a drawer – you need to be able to tap into it’s motivating energy on a regular basis. Or use futureme.org to send yourself regular reminder emails to keep you on track.
- Celebrate what you have done – yes, give yourself a pat on the back and a reward. Don’t focus on on what you haven’t done yet.
- Develop a motivation mindset. Check in on your self belief – do you feel you can achieve your goal or do you have doubts creeping in? Identify any blocks and think about how you can overcome them. I like to write them down and develop a strategy for each one to stop it circulating in my head! If you need some help overcoming your doubts and your inner critic have a look at my book Developing your Inner Coach.
- Find an accountability buddy. Staying on track can be the hardest thing if you feel there is no accountability so sharing this by reporting in and updating on progress can be really useful at making you get on with it. I run a monthly Accountability and Motivation programme for clients and they have found it incredibly helpful. If this is something you feel would make all the difference do get in touch.
Don’t just drift in your career, take control and the solstice as your motivation to stop, reflect and plan. In December and January I am offering a special one hour super focused Career Planning coaching session to get you clear about next year as well as giving you a confidence boost through celebrating what you have achieved this year. If you would like to go deeper and get some help to be clear about the progress you want to make next year and are interested in discovering more about this session and the early bird price get in touch here.
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Photo courtesy of Kaboompics.com