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15 New Year’s Resolution Ideas to Make This Year Your Best Year

15 New Year’s Resolution Ideas to Make This Year Your Best Year

With the new year quickly approaching, it’s time to make our resolutions once again.

If you’re like most people, then you have a recurring pattern of creating a resolution, and forgetting about it in less than a month. Studies show that the reason why 92% of people[1] don’t follow through with their resolution is simple — the resolution isn’t exciting enough to get them to take the actions required.

We’re going to help you break this pattern today, because we’ve curated the top 15 new year’s resolution ideas that will put some fire into your belly. We recommend that you choose a few of these, and test them out in the next few days. The biggest mistake people often make is when they try to take on too many goals without having a specific direction to guide them.

Without further ado, here are 15 new year’s resolution ideas.

1. Travel to a country you’ve never been to

One of the biggest personal growth opportunities comes from discovering new cultures and locations that you’re unfamiliar with. I’ve had the opportunity to travel the world alone, and it’s one of those rare situations that pushed me beyond my comfort zone.

    2. Less tech, more nature

    As we become a more connected world through technology, it can feel impossible to disconnect. This brings with it more stress, baggy eyes, and lack of connection (no pun intended) with the people we love most. You can use free productivity apps to help you block out the distraction and unwind.

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      3. Learn a new language

      If you’ve been putting off learning a new language, this is the year to make it happen. As the world is becoming a more globalized place by the minute, having a foreign language under your belt is transitioning from a ‘nice-to-have’ to a ‘must-have’ skill in life, and in the workplace. Check out websites like Rype to get live 1-on-1 daily lessons online with professional teachers, anytime of the day.

        4. Invest 10% of your salary/income on yourself

        Warren Buffett is famous for sharing that the best investment you can make is in yourself. Whether it’s $100 or a $1,000, allocate a portion of your salary to invest in yourself. This could be your education, your health, your love life, whatever you want to improve in your life.

          5. Explore a new career opportunity

          If you’ve been in a career that is not maximizing your full potential, it might be time for you to take that leap and explore new options. There are limitless options out there, and you can start looking at popular job boards like Indeed, Monster, or even Craigslist.

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            6. Rekindle an old friendship you lost

            Is there someone in your life who you haven’t been able to keep in touch with? Perhaps it’s a friend from high school, or it may even be a family member. One of the biggest regrets people have at the end of their lives is leaving incomplete relationships that should have been fostered. Take that step today and rekindle an old friendship before it’s too late.

              7. Commit to getting in shape

              No amount of money or success is going to matter if your health isn’t optimal. Getting in shape should be your number one priority, because it’s the foundation that will not only help you become more successful, but enjoy your success once you get it.

                8. Develop that skill you’ve been putting off

                Do you have a skill that you’ve been wanting to learn, but have been putting off? You may have been discouraged in the past because you weren’t picking it up fast enough. Try following some of these strategies to master a new skill faster.

                  9. Read one book every week/month

                  The more you learn, the more you earn. Kick-off the new year by committing to read one book per week (or per month if you know you can’t commit to one week).

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                    10. Quit smoking

                    I recommend you read Allen Carr’s Easy Way to Stop Smoking[2]. Published in 1985, this book has helped millions of people, including celebrities such as Ellen Degeneres, quit smoking after implementing the strategies outlined in the book.

                      11. Go 80%

                      Everyday we huff and puff, trying to squeeze in that extra minute, paragraph, or meeting. But if we can work smart, it’s completely possible to get 95% done by putting in 80% of the effort in, and avoiding the unnecessary stress. The key is to choose strategically what you want to be working on.

                        12. Say ‘Hell Yeah’ or ‘No’

                        Derek Sivers has a famous saying of either saying ‘Hell Yeah’ or ‘No’. This means that unless you’re incredibly excited about a new opportunity and willing to give 100% of your effort, you should practice saying no. It will allow you to focus more of your time on what truly matters.

                          13. Give back through volunteering

                          We’re incredibly fortunate to have the lives we lead, no matter where you are right now. If you’re able to read this using a smartphone or a laptop, you’re more fortunate than the majority of the people around the world. Giving back through volunteering will not only give you perspective on how grateful we should be, but it will help you contribute to the community.

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                            14. Become a digital nomad

                            The rise of digital nomads has arrived, and it’s here to stay. Our entire company at Rype is fully remote at the moment, including our language teachers, and we plan to stay that way.

                              15. Review your goals every month (not every year!)

                              The most impactful New Year’s Resolution may be to actually review your resolutions more than once a year. You can make adjustments based on how far you’ve actually come, and you’ll feel more motivated by reviewing it every month (or even every week).

                                Reference

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                                Sean Kim

                                Sean is the founder and CEO of Rype, a language learning app. He's an entrepreneur and blogger.

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                                Published on September 23, 2020

                                6 Effective Negotiation Skills to Master

                                6 Effective Negotiation Skills to Master

                                I don’t know about you, but many times when I hear the word negotiate I think of lawyers working out a business deal or having to do battle with a car salesman to try to get a lower price. Since I am in recruiting, the term “negotiation” comes up when someone is attempting to get a higher compensation package.

                                If we think about it, we tend to negotiate almost every day in a wide variety of things we do. Getting a handle on the important negotiation skills can be incredibly beneficial in many parts of our lives. Let’s take a look at 6 effective negotiation skills to master.

                                What is Negotiation?

                                First, let’s take a look at what negotiation is. Put simply, negotiation is a method by which people settle their differences. It is a process in which compromise or agreement can be reached without argument or dispute.

                                Anytime two people or sides disagree on something, they are almost always looking for the best possible outcome for their side. This could be from an individual’s perspective or someone representing an organization.

                                In reality, it’s rare that one side gets everything they want and the other side gets nothing that they are seeking. Seeking to reach a common ground of sorts where both sides feel like they are getting most of what they want is the key to being successful and maintaining the relationship.

                                Places We Negotiate

                                I’ve mentioned that we negotiate in just about all phases of our life. For those of you who are shaking your head no, I invite you to think about the following:

                                1. Work/Business

                                This one is the most obvious and it’s what naturally comes to mind when we think of the word “negotiate”.

                                When you first started at your current job, you might have asked for a higher salary. It could be that you delivered a huge new client to your company and used this as leverage in your most recent evaluation for more compensation. If you work with vendors (and just about every company does), maybe you worked them to a lower price or better contract terms.

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                                In recruiting, I negotiate with candidates and hiring managers all the time to land the best talent I can find. It’s very common to accept additional work with the (sometimes spoken, sometimes unspoken) agreement that it will benefit your career in the future.

                                Recently, I took over a project that was my boss was working on so that I would be able to attend a conference later in the year. And so it goes, we do this all day long at work.

                                2. Personal

                                I don’t know about you, but I negotiate with my spouse all the time. I’ll cook dinner with the understanding that she does the dishes. Who wants to mow the lawn and who wants to vacuum and dust the house?

                                I think we should save 10% for retirement, but she thinks 5% is plenty. Therefore, we save 8%. And don’t even get me started with my kids. My older daughter can borrow my car as soon as she finishes her chores. My younger daughter can go hang out with her friends when her homework is done.

                                Then, there are all those interactions in our personal lives outside our homes. The carpenter wants to charge me $12,000 to build a new deck. I think $10,000 is plenty so we agree on $11,000. I ask my neighbor if I can borrow his snowblower in the winter if I invite him over the next time I grill steak. And so on.

                                3. Ourselves

                                You didn’t expect this one, did you? We negotiate with ourselves all day long.

                                I’ll make sure I don’t skip my workout tomorrow since I’m going to have that extra piece of pizza. My spouse has been quiet the last few days, is it worth me asking her about, or should I leave it alone? I think the car place charged me for some repairs that weren’t needed, should I say something or just let it go? I know my friend has been having some personal challenges, should I check in with him? We’ve been friends for a long time, I’m sure he’d come to me if he needed help. I’ve got the #4 pick in this year’s Fantasy Football draft, should I choose a running back or a wide receiver?

                                Think about that non-stop voice inside your head. It always seems to be chattering away about something and many times, it’s us negotiating with ourselves. I’ll finish up that report that the boss needs before I turn on the football game.

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                                Why Negotiation Skills Are So Important

                                Put simply, negotiation skills are important because we all interact with other people, and not only other people but other organizations and groups of people as well.

                                We all rarely want the same thing or outcome. Most of the time a vendor is looking at getting you to pay a higher price for something than you want to spend. Therefore, it’s important to negotiate to some middle ground that works well for both sides.

                                My wife and I disagree on how much to save for retirement. If we weren’t married it wouldn’t be an issue. We’d each contribute how much we wanted to on our retirement funds. We choose to be married, so we have to come to some agreement that we both feel comfortable with. We have to compromise. Therefore, we have to negotiate.

                                If we each lived on a planet by ourselves, we would be free to do just about anything we wanted to. We wouldn’t have to compromise with anyone because we wouldn’t interact with anyone. We would make every choice unilaterally the way we wanted to.

                                As we all know, this isn’t how things are. We are constantly interacting with other people and organizations, each one with their own agenda’s, viewpoints, and opinions. Therefore, we have to be able to work together.

                                6 Negotiation Skills to Master

                                Having strong negotiation skills helps us create win-win situations with others, allowing us to get most of what we want in conjunction with others around us.

                                Now, let’s look at 6 effective negotiation skills to master.

                                1. Preparation

                                Preparation is a key place to start with when getting ready to negotiate. Being prepared means having a clear vision of what you want and how you’d go about achieving it. It means knowing what the end goal looks like and also what you are willing to give to get it.

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                                It also means knowing who you are negotiating with and what areas they might be willing to compromise on. You should also know what your “bottom line” is. By “bottom line” I mean what is the most you are willing to give up to get what you want.

                                For instance, several years ago, I decided it was time to get a newer car. I say newer because I wanted a “new to me” car, not a brand new car. I did my research and figured out what type of car I wanted. I decided on what must-have items on the car I wanted, the highest amount of miles that would already be on it, the colors I was willing to get it in, and the highest amount of money I was willing to pay.

                                After visiting numerous car dealerships I was able to negotiate buying a car. I knew what I was willing to give up (amount of money) and what I was willing to accept, things like the color, amount of miles, etc. I came prepared. This is critical.

                                2. Clear Communication

                                The next key skill you need to be an effective negotiator is clear communication. You have to be able to clearly articulate what you want to the other party. This means both clear verbal and written communication.

                                If you can’t clearly tell the other person what you want, how do you expect to get it? Have you ever worked through something with a vendor or someone else only to learn of a surprise right at the end that wasn’t talked about before? This is not what you would call clear communication. It’s essential to be able to share a coherent and logical vision with the person you are working with.

                                3. Active Listening

                                Let’s do a quick review of active listening. This is when you are completely focused on the speaker, understand their message, comprehend the information, and respond appropriately. This is a necessary ingredient to be able to negotiate successfully. You must be able to fully focus on the other person’s wants to completely understand them.

                                If you aren’t giving them your full attention, you may miss some major points or details. This leads to frustration down the road on both sides. Ensure you are employing your active listening skills when in arbitration mode.

                                4. Teamwork and Collaboration

                                To be able to get to a place of common ground and a win-win scenario, you have to have a sense of teamwork and collaboration.

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                                If you are only thinking about yourself and what you want without giving much care to what the other person is wanting, you are bound to wind up without a solution. The other person may get frustrated and give up if they see you are unwilling to meet them halfway or care little for what they want.

                                When you collaborate, you are working together to help each other get what is most important to you. The other upside to negotiating with a sense of teamwork and collaboration is that it helps create a sense of trust, which, in turn, helps provide positive energy for working to a successful conclusion.

                                5. Problem Solving

                                Problem-solving is another key negotiation skill. When you are working with the other person to get the deal done many times you’ll face new challenges along the way.

                                Maybe you want a new vendor to provide training on the software they are selling you but they say it’s going to cost an additional $20,000 to provide this service. If you don’t have the additional $20,000 in the budget to spend on the software but you feel the training is critical, how are you going to solve that problem?

                                From what I’ve seen, most vendors aren’t willing to provide additional services without getting paid for them. This is where problem-solving skills will help continue the discussions. You might suggest to the vendor that your company will also be looking to replace their financial software next year, and you’d be happy to ensure they get one of the first seats at the table when the time comes if they could perhaps lower the pricing on their training.

                                There’s a solution to most challenges, but it takes problem-solving skills to work through them effectively.

                                6. Decision-Making Ability

                                Finally, having strong decision-making ability will help you seal the deal when you get to a place where everyone feels like they are getting what works for them. Each step of the way you can cross off the list when you get what you are looking for and decide to move onto the next item. Then, once you have all of your must-have boxes checked and the other side feels good about things, it’s time to shake hands and sign on the dotted line. Powerful decision-making ability will help you get to the finish line together.

                                Conclusion

                                There you have it, 6 effective negotiation skills to master to lead a more fulfilling life. Once we realize that we negotiate in one form or another almost every day in every phase of our lives, we realize how critical a skill it is.

                                Possessing strong negotiation skills will help you in nearly every one of your relationships at both the workplace and in your personal life. If you feel your arbitration tools could use some sharpening, try some of the 6 effective negotiation skills to master that we’ve talked about.

                                More Tips to Improve Your Negotiation Skills

                                Featured photo credit: Windows via unsplash.com

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