‘New year, new you’ is a bit of a cliché, but it’s true that with every ending, there is a new beginning and a chance to do things differently. This year, for many of us, we have been completely absorbed in our business. Not necessarily by choice, but because it was needed at the time.

Is 2022 an opportunity for us to dedicate time to our personal or professional development to evolve and grow?

During the last two years, we’ve all embraced things we have never done – or imagined doing – before. But, these experiences have shown us that we are resilient, agile, and creative, and we need to carry these skills into 2022.

Before moving forward – take time to reflect. Ask yourself:

  • What has 2021 taught you?
  • Have you achieved what you didn’t think was possible?
  • What new skills did you develop?
  • Which new skills would you like to develop?

The end of the year is an opportunity to reset. How will you do things differently so you can achieve your goals?

Here are some tips to get you started:

  1. Allocate time each day and dedicate it to your development by blocking time out of your calendar. If you’re commuting to work, how can you use this time? If you are working from home, how can you best use the time you might have been spent commuting?
  2. “Leaders are readers” is one of my mantras. Grab a book that has been on your shelf for a while and make time to read it. Just ten pages a day adds up to one book each month. My goal is to read one book a month. Right now, I am reading Fear Less by Dr Pippa Grange.
  3. I am a massive advocate of listening to podcasts. They are a fantastic resource, especially for time-poor people. Find a podcast that is in the area you want to develop. There are some excellent leadership podcasts available. My weekly, never miss podcast is Dare to Lead with Brené Brown.
  4. Find a coach who can support you and help you with actions and accountability. Is there someone in your organisation or network that can work with you as a mentor?

Day to day, we often find ourselves completely absorbed in our business. Although we have the best of intentions, if we don’t prioritise and set aside time for developing our leadership, it simply won’t happen. Be conscious of how you spend your time. What unproductive activities could you replace with self-development?

This is the ultimate chance to use time wisely, invest in yourself and work on your leadership skills.