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December 7:

Spend 15 minutes today thinking about four things you learning or develop skills in for next year.

Continual development and learning is essential as a freelancer - but it can be much harder to carve out time for focused learning and training. There's no promotion when you're self-employed, unless you give yourself one.

If you don't have a plan in place, a list of areas you specifically want to work - it's even harder, as you won't have an idea of what you want to focus on, and how you're going to go about investing in those new skills - and without development, you are at risk of falling behind others who share your skillset.

Take time today to list three or four areas you really want to focus on skills development next year. I'd suggest making two 'hard' skills (i.e. the craft skills you need to do your job well, such as a new programming framework, certification for a type of teaching, etc.) and two 'soft' skills (i.e. the things you need to do interact brilliantly with others, such as negotiation skills, presentation training, etc.)

Don't pick too many - but be as specific as possible, and set yourself a deadline for when you're going to spend the time working on this. Perhaps one per quarter, and put reminders in your calendar now to get started. Find an accountability buddy and tell them your plans, or share on Leapers, and we'll help you on your journey.

If you're at a loss of what skills you might want to work on, look back to Feedback and connect with some previous colleagues to identify areas that you'd benefit from working on

What four areas of development will you focus on next year?

Leave a comment here, or post on social, using the hashtag #LeapersAdvent, so we can follow along

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