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Fed up with New Year’s resolutions?


Try choosing a word for you this year instead.

Gretchen Rubin, who writes about research on habits and happiness, suggests embracing a one-word theme for the year to guide you as the year unfolds. It’s more of a gentle theme than a set goal or resolution and can be any word you like.

Upskills team Nov 2023

As part of our wrap-up for 2023, the Upskills team (above) did this exercise together. Here are some of our words in 2024!

Project Ikuna Manager, Tafā has selected ‘balance‘ for 2024. Putting aside time for herself, including hitting the pools in the early morning every weekday. Balance, in terms of blocking out time for family including a new grandbaby and fur baby Milo.

Our Business Support Manager, Trish has chosen the word ‘gratitude‘. “Given how life is so precious and short really in the scheme of things. part of what my Dad has instilled in me is to be grateful for everything,” says Trish. “Especially so since Mum has passed.”

For Holly, 2024 is all about ‘vision‘. Whether that’s seeing opportunities in the short or long term, at home or mahi, it’s a firm focus on putting on a strategic hat to lead and lean into 2024 and beyond.

Programme Coordinator, Tania has chosen her word as ‘present’, as in, being present in each moment.

General Manager, Janeke’s word for the year is ‘process‘. “As we head into 2024, process has become front of mind,” says Janeke. “We are bringing consistency and always evaluating our delivery. As I navigate with different hats in the new role alongside a busy young family, process keeps everything ticking!”

Tutor, Mel’s word is ‘hauora‘. She explains what it means to her and her family: “making my intentions, boundaries and decisions clear around what is best for my health, and my family’s health. Acknowledging that hauora is more than our vital signs, but our mental health and what aligns with our purpose and the holistic space of a healthy life!”

Programme Coordinator, Junita is all about the ‘journey‘ for 2024 – opening up to new possibilities and potential in all aspects of life.

Sarah has chosen ‘creativity‘. “I chose this word to get back to my value of creativity, and a habit of writing for fun as I did when I was younger. I want creativity to be front of my mind across lots of spaces in life. Whether it’s taking fun photos for my dog’s Instagram page or dreaming up beautiful new courses at work.”

Our Learning and Design Manager, Saran has selected ‘tīmatanga‘ – the start of a new phase or journey. Personally, some big changes for our whanau to navigate this year, says Saran. And at mahi, she is always looking to support those on their journeys.

Tutor, Sharon’s going with ‘influence‘ for 2024. ”I’m thinking how it’s not always the big brash things. How the small things I say and do in the different roles I have, can make an impact. Who or what influences me for good? What do I need to tune out to stay focused?”

For tutor, Julz in 2024 it’s ‘change/seek‘ with a bit of ‘explore‘ thrown in for good measure! “For me – learning to be uncomfortable to seek change in a good way,” she says. Like trying something new (personal) or taking a dive at new approaches to my work ethic. Which leads to exploring all things new, both work-related and personal. A year of change but for the betterment of all things me.”

Tutor, Shelly’s inspired by nature this year with the words ‘earth‘ and ‘rocks’. She explains: “Setting goals and objectives so I can be more intentional with how I spend my time. I want to bring up my Earth, to think of the outcome I want and how to get there. To move away from the mindless scrolling and procrastinating.”

An inspiring collection of themes to see us through 2024 at Upskills. Have you ever tried this technique? What’s your word for this year?


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About our team

About Gretchen Rubin

Upskills Ltd.

Address: 93 Church St, Onehunga, Auckland 1061
Free parking: 120 minutes, Gerrard Beeson Pl.
Phone: 09 622 3979