I don’t know about you, but I’ve already submitted my vacation requests for the year. It’s not uncommon for leaders to ask for vacation requests in January for operational reasons. But since its only January, and we’re still in that optimistic season when people are attempting to make good on their New Year’s Resolutions, take your mind off of vacation for a bit and think about the trajectory of your career for 2013.
Where do you want to go, what do you want to do, and what changes would you like to see for yourself this year? Be appreciative and consider what you’d like to repeat or maintain. It’s important for your own professional development to set goals for yourself, and to have an idea of what you want from your career.
But I understand the underlying intimidation factor here: perhaps you’re afraid of change, you don’t like the idea of marketing yourself, or you don’t like the idea of setting goals because they seem so out of reach. Most changes in our lives don’t happen over night: consider physical changes to your body, how long it took to complete school, or even the time it took to move on after the disillusion of a marriage. Change takes time. So when you’re thinking about making changes in your professional life, realize that you can start small: you don’t have to map the course of your entire career in one sitting. It’s January – take the time to do a simple temperature check for yourself to think about where you are, or where you’d rather be.
So give this some thought today: What are your career objectives for 2013? Where do you want to go, what do your want to do, and what would you like to repeat from last year?
Change is inevitable and adaptation is essential. Take responsibility for your own professional development this year, and decide on some career objectives.