The sight of Christmas lights and decorations being taken down, gently reminds us that the festive season is now over, and it is in fact the time to stop eating cake and get back to work and our daily routines. The good, old days of wearing pyjamas while sipping hot chocolate and watching ‘home alone’ all day long are sadly gone for another 12 months. In fact, while we’re slowly getting back to our responsibilities, the only thing which reminds us that it is now 2017 are our New Year’s resolutions.
As translators, our resolutions might differ slightly from the rest. Most likely, not many of us have decided to join the gym and get super fit because, well, we are realists. Instead, we choose goals which are much more achievable, at least on paper. Although it was Blue Monday just a few days ago, we still hold onto our resolutions strongly, hoping that 2017 is the year…
Statistically, losing weight and saving more money are some of the most popular New Year’s resolutions. Despite this, here is a short list of goals which is much more suitable for a person working for or with a professional translation agency.
1 – Relax More
For some very mysterious reasons, majority of people, including my family and friends, seem to think that being a professional translator is more of a relaxing hobby than a stressful job. I often find it difficult to explain to them that just because I don’t have to be in the office by 9am doesn’t mean that I don’t work hard. In fact, being a freelance translator is perhaps the most stressful job I have ever had. Managing my own work, following tight deadlines, marketing myself, keeping up with the industry, working nights and weekends…it can get a little hectic at times! Therefore, this year I decided to relax more. Whether by taking a day off and spending it with friends or family or simply going cinema or swimming – it’s definitely something I have to do more often.
2 – Contact more agencies and direct clients
2016 was a great year for our industry! I base my statement simply by looking the amount of work I have received throughout the year as well as the industry conferences I attended. This showed that the potential which lies in our industry is truly great! Therefore, in order to develop myself as a professional and take a full advantage of this potential, I decided it’ll be a good idea to market myself to some of the translation agencies and direct clients, which I haven’t yet worked with and increase my customer base.
3 – Travel More
The love for languages and travelling were perhaps the main reasons I decided to become a professional translator in the first place. This year, I decided to take a full advantage of the opportunities and freedom my job gives me and travel as much as I possibly can to some of the places around the world I always wanted to see.
4 – Try something new
Trying something new is always a scary concept, and this is, certainly, the most difficult of my resolutions. Having background and a previous first-hand experience in the marketing industry, I consequently always tried working only with marketing and promotional material. In 2017 however, I’d like to expand my horizons and perhaps work a little with documents from another business industry.
5 – Be even more organised
Last, but definitely not least – staying organised. I must admit, being extremely organised was never my strength, and as you probably know, this is a very important aspect of being a translator. Papers lying all over my desk, emails that still await my response and coffees I haven’t finished. Two weeks ago, that would be a pretty accurate description of my life. However, as we know, new year new me and therefore I now keep everything in order. Whether it’s a hard copy on in my file or a digital copy on my laptop, documents I might need, or even dictionaries. Only now I truly realise how much keeping everything under control speeds up my work and allows me to focus on what I actually love doing, translating, rather than looking for things.