Some people pooh-pooh New Year’s Resolutions because, well, a lot of people fail to achieve them. But I think where most people go wrong is by setting impossible goals. I believe it’s all about baby steps. I started out 2016 determined to make Charlotte my home and to stop wallowing in self-pity. Over the course of the year my plans for how I would get there kept changing – it was as if Siri kept re-routing me until I found the best path. But I closed out 2016 in a much better place than I was at the end of 2015, and I plan to keep up that same rate of progress through 2017.
Right before Christmas break, I received some great news regarding my job. But since I’m not really one to rest on my laurels, I’ve already begun planning for how I’ll keep up the momentum in 2017 with my New Year’s resolutions. They’re simple, and they build upon my achievements and mindset shifts from 2016.
- Attend more networking events and schedule more one-on-one meetings
I used to think networking events were painful and unnecessary, but my entire outlook changed once I joined PRSA Charlotte, started attending the luncheons regularly, and joined the New Professionals Committee. I finally feel like I found “my people.” And I’ve come to realize that I do, in fact, enjoy small talk and meeting new people. I guess previously I was just afraid I wasn’t good at it. My goal is to attend every single luncheon and event that PRSA puts on in 2017 (pending my travel schedule), get more involved with the committee, and actually schedule those coffee dates we all often promise each other. Is there anything better than stepping out of the office for a PR chat over coffee/tea/hot cocoa to recharge your batteries? I think not. Plus, as an introvert, one-on-one convos is where I really thrive.
- Volunteer regularly
Philanthropy is something that has been missing from my life since college. I’d like to find a cause or nonprofit that I can get involved with and help out my community. One I’m considering is Promising Pages, which donates books to underprivileged kids in the Charlotte area. As a kid, reading was my absolute favorite subject and what led me to my career as a writer. Also, since MPR is a 4th grade teacher at a Title I school, I know that literacy dictates student success in all subjects. We have my entire childhood book collection in plastic bins in our storage unit, and I want other kids to grow up with that same accessibility to reading.
- Make more time for the things that truly make me happy
One day when I was feeling particularly discontent, I decided to jot down a list of what genuinely makes me happy. After a few minutes, I reviewed it, and realized I don’t make any time for the majority of the things on that list. It sounds silly, but I realized that whenever I had a free afternoon, I’d just rewatch Gossip Girl on Netflix. Not surprisingly, binge-watching shows I’ve already seen was nowhere on my list. Something as simple as getting my nails done was towards the top, and I’ve gotten a manicure/pedicure exactly zero times since I’ve moved to Charlotte. Why? So in 2017 I’m going to consciously make more time for the items on that list, because we all know that the more content we are with our home life, the more productive we’ll be at work.
What New Year’s resolutions are you making for 2017?