Reset and Recharge for 2021
How was 2020 for you? If you are like most women who work for themselves, 2020 has been taxing on your personal life, your career, your finances and your mental health. To say it’s been a tough year is an understatement – but there is a glimmer of hope – things can and will get better. Now more than ever, as 2020 is behind us, it’s important to take the opportunity to focus on reflection and resetting your life in the hope to get 2021 off to a positive start. COVID-19 has had a huge effect on people’s lives both professionally and personally. We’ve had high anxiety. We’ve felt g stuck, emotionally drained, lonely and rudderless. It’s not just our jobs that have been affected – our entire livelihoods including mental health, financial wellness, physical and personal health have taken a hit as well.
It’s time to reflect and reset. Resilience and clarity are key to keep us sustaining no matter what comes our way. We are in the midst of getting to grips with what the ‘new normal’ is going to be, and need to find a way to grasp the opportunity that often comes from uncertainty. Now is the time to reach beyond the usual ‘going about your day’ and shift to making a conscious effort to increase energy, get clear on your purpose, set a healthy routine, gain mental clarity and prioritise your wellbeing, as a self-employed woman.
So how do we prepare for 2021 to ensure we are fully recharged and ready for a successful year ahead?
Here are 5 ways you can reset and recharge to make 2021 your best year yet:
Budgeting and conscious spending
Let’s talk money!. Time to get clear on exactly where your money comes from and what you want it to do for you. How much money do you need for the life you want to live? Is your current spending helping you achieve that lifestyle, or keeping you from it?
Take Action: Conscious spending goes hand-in-hand with budgeting. Create a 2021 wishlist budget spreadsheet. The first tab is your current incomings, outgoings & spending and the second tab is your financial wishlist for 2021 – what are the things you want and how much do you need to be earning to achieve it? (be sure to factor in things like travel, an upgrade on your home, investments, savings pot, professional training, etc). Once you have a clear vision for where you want to be, and where your money is currently going, it will help you focus on spending and saving in the right places. Track down where your money is going and find those ‘leaks’ such as takeaways and forgotten subscriptions.
Reading List: The Total Money Makeover by Dave Ramsey and I Will Teach You to Be Rich by Ramit Sethi.
Useful Tool: Budgeting apps and online banking apps like Mint and Starling are great to help you track where your money goes and help you save for the things that you want to achieve.
Honour Your Breaks
Prioritise your self-care and take time off to unplug
Taking time off as a freelancer may seem hard to do – so often time is money when you are providing a service to your clients and customers. Push past that mental stigma that time off is a sign of weakness and make it a non-negotiable to set time aside time everyday for a ‘Balance Break’.
Take Action: Put away the laptop, pick an activity that you will do for 30 minutes – 1 hour each day and schedule it in your diary as your ‘Balance Break’. Whether it’s story time with your toddler, going for a walk, baking something, dancing or just making a cup of tea and reading a chapter in a book you want to read, figure out what balances you and schedule it in your calendar.
Reading List: The Monk Who Sold His Ferrari by Robin Sharma or The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen R. Covey.
Useful Tool: Journaling apps do exist! Apps such as Diaro are great for journaling with an option to add photo entries. Another useful tool is to use a self-care app called Aloe Bud where you create and follow a personal care dashboard of all the self-care habits you want to start implementing into your life.
Meditate for Clarity
Meditation is a powerful tool. It gives you the power to silence the outside world, connect with yourself and align your thoughts. If you haven’t already, start and end your day with a simple meditation ritual to keep you grounded and centred.
Take Action: Create a routine when you wake up in the morning and when you go to bed in the evening for practiced gratitude and affirmations.10-20 minutes in the morning or night to sit still in silence, breathe deeply and meditate.
Reading List: Two great books to read if you’re just starting the journey of meditation is Teach Yourself To Meditate by Eric Harrison and Meditation for Beginners by Jack Kornfield.
Useful Tool: There are an abundance of apps you can use to support you in making meditation a routine part of your day. Headspace and Calm are our faves.
Walk, run or play
Create a daily routine to get off your chair and move. By simply walking, you instantly lower cortisol (your stress hormone) and increase endorphins (chemicals in the body that relieve stress and pain). Who wouldn’t want that?! If you love running then make that a daily part of your life – but it doesn’t have to be that vigorous; walking the dog, dancing to your favourite playlist or even just planting in the garden all count too. Start a daily exercise regime that suits your lifestyle for 2021 to reset your mind and body for a positive year ahead and you will feel a flow of confidence and achievement.
Take Action: Set your exercise goals and stick to them. Pick what activity you want to do and commit to it each day. Start a wellbeing journal and document your goals and how you feel after each session to show your progress.
Reading List: Starting off a daily exercise routine can be as simple as starting an online fitness plan. Fitness plans by Classpass, Kayla BBG and Jillian Michaels are all time favourites.
Useful Tool: A Fitbit or any other type of fitness tracker (you can use the one that comes on your phone) is great to track your steps and how much you’re moving.
Create a vision for your career and give yourself a sense of direction.
2020 left us feeling overwhelmed and chaotic. As we enter into 2021, getting our goals on paper and creating clarity is vital for creating a strategy to move you forward.
Take Action: . Get a 2021 diary and take some time for a strategy session to plan out goals through the year.. Ask yourself questions such as “Who do I want to become in 2021?”, “What does my ideal work day look like”, “What direction do I want to take with my career?”, “How will I make sure I succeed in my goals?”.
Reading List: Hard Goals: The Secret to Getting From Where You Are To Where You Want To Be by Mark Murphy and Rewire Your Brain by John B. Arden.
Useful Tool: Create a vision board for your career and personal life. Vision boards are a collection of images and affirmations of your goals and desires which you can use as a source of inspiration. Do this either digitally or in hardcopy to hang up on your wall to inspire you as you go through your day.
As freelancers and self-employed professionals, we unfortunately don’t get the benefits of corporate wellness programs, financial planning, a clear-cut work/life balance and a community of colleagues. This makes it even more of a struggle to figure out how, when and where to structure your wellbeing into your work routine. Let’s get 2021 off to the best possible start and prioritise YOU! This is where our Welle HR platform comes into play. Centring around the 5 pillars of welle-being: Professional, Financial, Personal, Mental and Physical, this platform will connect you to an engaged community, giving you access to supportive resources and guidance to become the best version of yourself personally and professionally for 2021.