New year, new you?
With the new year just around the corner, what better way to see in the next decade than by creating a list of unattainable resolutions that you will have forgotten about by February?
No but really, if you're graduating in 2020 the start of the new year is a great excuse to get organised, have a think about life after university and put in place some realistic goals to help you navigate this year of change and get you one step closer to a graduate job.
Here's some career resolutions to consider for the year ahead.
1. Build your skill-set or gain some new experience
Whether it's volunteering for a charity, enrolling in an online course or doing an internship, there's plenty to be gained when you develop a new skill or broaden your experience.
Writing your CV will be much easier if you actually have something to talk about, internships offer insight into different industries and help you determine which career might interest you and tangible skills make you stand out from the crowd when you come to apply for jobs.
That doesn't mean you have to fill your calendar with tons of internships or learn how to code overnight - set yourself a realistic goal and it'll increase the likelihood of you actually achieving it.
2. Have an open mind about the future
Resolutions don't always have to be practical; your mind-set plays a big role too.
Challenge yourself to keep an open mind about the graduate job hunt. Don't shut down an opportunity straight away because it's not something you'd initially choose and remember that there's plenty of options out there - you don't have to follow what everyone else is doing.
You might head straight into a grad scheme, go on a ski season, intern for a few months, work at your local pub or travel the world and never come back. Keep in mind that just because you haven't secured a high paying job straight after graduation, it doesn't mean you're doing graduating wrong.
3. Grow your network
Networking is a dreaded word for many students and graduates, but there's no doubt that in building your network of contacts the opportunities available to you will increase.
Optimise your LinkedIn and Twitter profiles, follow people who inspire you and don't be afraid to reach out to people to chat about your industry. If you're city-based, you're likely to be surrounded by opportunities to attend networking events and talks, which are great ways to meet people in the same industry as you.
Also consider why you're setting the resolution to grow your network. Set a specific goal, whether it's to do with what you want to gain from building your network or who specifically you'd like to reach out to, and work towards achieving it.
4. Stop procrastinating
Surveys have revealed that British people lose around 55 days worth of time each year because of procrastination. That's 218 minutes per day where you could have been revising, browsing for jobs, filling in an application form or doing anything other than avoiding work.
Challenge yourself to kick the habit of procrastinating in 2020 and notice how it affects your productivity levels. Here's some simple tips for overcoming procrastination:
- Commit to one task at a time rather than flitting between multiple
- Start the day with the task you've been putting off the most, or that's the most difficult - get that done and every other job will seem easy
- Work in manageable time frames. This is will depend on what suits you; you might prefer to work for 1 hour with a 15 minute break, or work for 25 minutes with shorter, 5 minute breaks
- Use task management apps like Trello to help organise your time and workload - when you've finished each task you'll also get the satisfaction of ticking it off
5. Don't burn yourself out
Juggling exams, a dissertation, your social life, applying for jobs and doing an internship or placement is no mean feat. And whilst it's important to get your head down and give final year everything you've got, it's not worth sacrificing your mental health and well-being for.
You might be finding university assignments alone too much without having to add the graduate job hunt into your busy schedule. If that's the case, remember that there's no rush to get a graduate job; there are hundreds of opportunities out there and plenty will still be available come graduation.
Also, most companies class 'graduates' as candidates who've graduated within the last three years, so there's lots of time to apply.
If you're on the hunt for student and graduate opportunities there are tons available on our website - click here to take a look.