New Year, New Opportunities

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How to take the new year in your stride…


At Digital Innovators Skills we believe everyone has the potential succeed. Our role is to help you unlock your potential, harness your skills and find your path to employment. With a New Year on the horizon, now is a great time to start.

But before we delve into what the new year might bring, I think it’s important to reflect on the year that has passed. 2020 has been an incredibly turbulent year, one that many are happy to leave behind. Yet, on reflection, you might be surprised by the positives you are able to take away from the year. 

Task: Take a few minutes to think about the past 12 months. What have you achieved this year? What made you happy this year? What are your highlights of 2020?

Questions like this can often seem daunting, but the answers can be as “small” or “big” as you like. Perhaps you finished your studies at college or finished a project that you had been stuck on for ages. Maybe you read more books in your free time than you did the previous year or discovered a new hobby during lockdown. Our victories and achievements are not confined to academia or the workplace, and this is something to remember as we head into 2021.

Now we can explore how you can take the new year in your stride…

Take some time to set out what you would like to achieve in 2021.

Although the idea of having “new year’s resolutions” is somewhat of a cliché – the idea of having some goals in mind to kickstart your motivation for the year ahead is definitely a good idea. 

Task: Think about where you want to be this time next year. Will you have finished your studies? Will you be heading off to or finishing university? Will you be working full-time or changing careers? Will you be travelling (COVID-19 permitting of course)? It’s completely up to you!

You can compile this information any way you like, perhaps a list in a notebook, a mind map or an online mood board. The idea is to start the year with some goals outlined so you can envision how you’re going to progress over the next twelve months.

Now you have some ideas, let’s make a plan!

Once you have a general idea of your goals and ambitions, you can begin to make a plan of how you can achieve them. 

Task: Ask yourself – how do I get to where I want to be? What do I need to do? Who do I need to speak to? Where do I need to go?

If you’re hoping to be in full-time employment by the end of next year, for example, what are the steps you need to take in order to get there? If there are gaps in your CV or skillset, you can take online courses such as the Digital Innovators Skills Programme to develop some of your skills further. If you feel like you need to gain more work experience, think about how you can acquire this.

If you need some advice about entering the workplace, speak to trusted people in your life such as family members, teachers, careers advisors, etc.

Make some moves…

Now you’re equipped with some goals and a plan of how to achieve them, you can start taking small steps to make your goals a reality. Research your interests, sign up for those courses, apply to those jobs, reach out to those from whom you need advice! 

Reminder: Whilst it is important to be proactive in terms of chasing your dreams, it is easy to get swept up in the “new year, new me” mantra which floods our social media feeds each year. Just because the year is changing, doesn’t mean you need to change too. 

So, with that in mind, don’t put too much pressure on yourself to overhaul your entire life. Take 2021 as an opportunity to take the next steps of your career journey in your stride – with a fresh mindset, an outlined set of goals and a plan to take you forward. 

If you found this blog useful, make sure you subscribe to our new fortnightly newsletter The Stride to receive careers advice and employability tips direct to your inbox.

You can find our free downloadable resources here.

The Digital Innovators Skills Programme helps young people develop their skills, gain work experience and kickstart their careers. If you would like to participate on the next course, which is fully funded by West Midlands Combined Authority, you can register your interest here. The next course begins on 25th January 2021.

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