This year, you’d like to focus on improving your career. So, where should you begin? Here’s how to determine your goals for 2022.
Tips to Set Your Career Goals for 2022
Write Down Your Top Accomplishments of 2021
Reflecting on how far you’ve come allows you to better map out your future path. Without a doubt, the past year has been difficult for most people. Nevertheless, you’ve certainly accomplished something that should be a source of pride. Maybe you took an online class to improve your computer skills? Maybe you survived unemployment and landed a new job? Or maybe you bravely served the public throughout the pandemic as an essential worker? Pull out a piece of paper and write down the first one to five ideas that pop into your mind.
Now that you know what made you proud last year ask yourself, “What would I like to do next?” Try not to overthink this question. Simply write down whatever enters your thoughts. You may be surprised at some of your answers.
Discover What Inspires You
Often, we pick goals based on what we think we ought to do. Yet, ultimately, if these goals aren’t something we genuinely WANT to do, they most likely won’t get done. Therefore, examine your list from a different perspective. Instead of choosing goals you feel meet your (or other people’s) expectations, circle those that inspire you. These should be aspirations you find interesting, exciting, and motivating.
Define Your Stretch Goals
Next, turn those inspirational ideas into stretch goals. Stretch goals are big AND attainable ambitions. For example, unless you’re in a special position, you probably won’t “Become the CEO.” However, you could “Expand into Leadership Roles.” Depending on the scope of your plans, you may wish to tackle anywhere from one to three stretch goals.
Break Stretch Goals into SMART Parts
Stretch goals are a wonderful starting point. Unfortunately, they’re usually difficult to measure. (How will you know if you expanded into leadership roles?) As a result, break your stretch goals into smaller SMART parts. SMART goals are Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Time-based. In other words, decide exactly what steps are required to meet your larger aspiration. For instance, take the leadership example. You could break this down into 1) Complete an accredited leadership training program by March 31th and 2) Volunteer to manage a project by June 30th. Additionally, to help yourself stay on track, consider laying out a yearly plan. Some SMART goals may only take a few days, while others could span several months.
Is Finding a Job One of Your Career Goals for 2022?
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