Renew your enthusiasm this January

Thought Leadership from Learning and Development

The January blues are all too common. We’ve all felt them. As we start the month, we’re reminded that there are 11 more ahead! It can affect our mood and enthusiasm at work, because ultimately, we all want to feel joy, passion and purpose in our lives and our careers.

The demands of everyday life can sometimes discourage us from staying motivated and enthusiastic. But if you look closely enough, inspiration is never far.

Whether you find it in your sleep, or in spending time with positive, optimistic people, or reviving a long-lost ambition – the ability to remain motivated is all around us.

New experiences and new challenges often open the floodgates, bringing with them fresh perspectives and ideas. Your new experiences may see you handle issues in a different way.

So if you’re feeling stuck or uninspired, dip into a new learning experience. See for yourself how valuable a new experience can be, and what it can do for your mindset. Who knows? It could change how you approach problems for the better!  

Write yourself a bucket list

Something to get you started could be to write yourself a bucket list. A bucket list is a list of all the goals and dreams you want to achieve in your lifetime, and can be a great way of reminding you of what’s really important.

To create your list, sit down and think of all the things you want to achieve, see, feel and experience. Where do you want your career to go? Do you want to gain any new qualifications this year? Keep going until you have at least 100 items on your list.

If you find yourself stuck, you may be mentally limiting yourself. Let yourself go. What would you do if you had unlimited time, money and resources? What have you always wanted to do but not yet done?

Items on your list may be “big”, such as travelling the world or running a marathon. But they can be smaller too, such as watching a sunrise or seeing your favourite band play live. You might even consider taking that course that you’ve been putting off.

Once you’ve written your list, start ticking off the goals you achieve and add any new ones that come to mind.

Setting these types of goals, big or small, helps us focus our attention on ourselves. With your bucket list, you’ll be able to hold yourself accountable to pursuing your own goals. This will really help you change your mindset at work and at home. You’ll be able to visualise progress.

How to start a bucket list

A bucket list is really a perfect way to make your dreams a reality, both personally and professionally. If you haven’t created one yet, we’ve got some tips to get you started!

  1. Write it down – Writing down your ambitions will help you visualise your targets. It ensures that you keep them in your mind. This is the first step. Write ambitiously, and be honest with yourself.
  2. Focus on your goals – You should now start to think about how you will accomplish your goals. Will you need to save money? Will you need to start to practise? Do you need to take lessons? Do you need to travel? Think about what you need to do and focus your attention on it!
  3. Commit to your adventures – Whether you’ve set big or small goals, you should be committed to getting them done. What about prioritising your ambitions? Which one would you like to get done first? Maybe your marathon is in a few months – is it time to start preparing now? Think of the bigger picture and cross these adventures off your list!
  4. Enjoy! – Your bucket list is a creative and fun way to accomplish your goals. It is for you, but you might even share them with a loved one. You might be able to cross off some items straight away, and others might take you longer. But in either case, your list is something that should bring you joy.

Anything that helps bring you happiness and satisfaction should also bring you joy. Your motivation at work will improve, as will your output and productivity.

Writing a bucket list should encourage you to live life to the fullest, and look forward to the year ahead with renewed enthusiasm. 

By Megan Hofmann and Maria McIntyre

Megan Hofmann started her career with Orange in the Learning and Development function. She then spent 14 years at Barclays PLC, achieving several promotions to the role of Global Leadership Trainer, with her key focus being to support people in learning and development to reach their full potential. Both within her working capacity but also outside work, Megan has a passion to support young people develop, having worked with several local authorities to reach young offenders and teenagers. She is also a qualified Neurolinguistic Programming practitioner.

Maria McIntyre joined Northern Gas and Power as Training Manager in 2021. Her career began 32 years ago with Barclays PLC. During this time, she worked across various roles, though more recently, Maria worked as a Business Manager in supporting and helping new and established business customers on their journey to securing growth and becoming more successful. Over the years, Maria has supported colleagues in enhancing and enriching their performance through her skills in coaching, training and facilitation. Maria is incredibly passionate about Learning and Development and ensuring all colleagues are able to maximise their potential.