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How Is Your New Year's Resolution Going?

Young Professionals Connection New Year Resolutions

This is an interesting topic for me because never in my life have I really had a “New Year’s Resolution” until this year. I never really took it seriously simply because no one ever really does.

The dictionary defines “resolution” as the act of finding an answer or solution to a conflict, problem, etc. Basically meaning you do it to resolve something. You would think that if something was a resolution to someone they would really want to resolve that problem.

But for whatever reason, a New Year’s Resolution gets kind of put by the way side for most people. Most people I have ever known to have New Year’s Resolutions never followed up on them. This year, I decided to flip that whole idea on its head and have multiple resolutions that I would solve and actually follow up on. I wanted to make 2014 one of the most rewarding years of my life thus far.

I looked at every area of my life and asked myself what one goal I would love to accomplish in the year of 2014. I broke it down into five categories and these are the goal or resolutions that I came up with.

Health and Fitness

This is probably my biggest goal of the year. I have become very interested in running over the past two years and last year I ran my first marathon. My 2014 goal: not only run another one, but qualify for the Boston Marathon.

It has been tough to measure the goal so far since it is already March and it is still winter like conditions outside. Running in these elements is not ideal but I have been running about four or five times a week at my apartment complex workout facility. Although I cannot run outside the fact that I am running more than I was last year before my first marathon is a good sign that I am on the right track.


I am fortunate enough to work at a great company like Hy-Vee. Currently I am an assistant manager at the Fleur Drive Hy-Vee. My 2014 goal: work my way to the next level of manager which would be an “assistant of” store operations position.

I believe I am taking the right steps to get there. I have not even been an assistant manager for a year yet but I am doing every ounce of training possible to become as knowledgeable as I can about the company. I am also asking to take on more tasks than what is asked of as an assistant manager.

Relationships and Social Life

I took a keen eye to this when it came to my resolution. After moving to Des Moines in August of last year, I felt I needed to improve my relationship with my girlfriend and reach out to old friends who I met in Des Moines just three years ago when I interned here. My 2014 goal: To improve my relationship with my girlfriend and grow more relationships in Des Moines.

This has been very positive thus far. This summer I will be moving in with my girlfriend and living in a condominium in West Des Moines. I have also rekindled old friendships and created new ones through work and hopefully even more after getting more involved in different organizations.

Purpose and Contribution

The question you always have to ask yourself is “how am I making other people’s lives better?” I wanted to change this part of my life because after college I had gotten out of volunteering and giving back. My 2014 goal: To become more involved with the Blank Park Zoo, YPC and give back more than I ever have before.

I have already started on this goal by becoming involved with the Blank Park Zoo becoming an ambassador for the non-profit along with volunteering there. Also, after recently becoming a member of the Young Professional Connection of Des Moines, I want to network and found other opportunities to help give back to the Des Moines community.

Mental Development

Never had I ever been a big fan of reading in my spare time. But, when you sit down and think about it, a lot of the most successful people and consistently challenging themselves by reading and learning new material to better their careers. My 2014 goal: To read a new book every two weeks.

I think in 2013 I read five books total. Right now in 2014 I am a pace of reading two to three books every two weeks. I knew I needed to step up in this part of my life that is why there is such a big difference. I actually would prefer reading over television now which is something that I would have never said in the past.           

If you read this and think that I am doing a lot, you are right. I have pushed myself more than ever before to get more out of everything and every area of my life. But I will admit I have not done it alone. I was lucky enough to have a business coach and old friend help me with these goals. My coach Marlo Higgins has helped me not only set high goals but held me accountable to them and has talked with me on a biweekly basis about them. Our “sessions” have been vital in my success thus far in 2014 and I know I will continue to succeed if she is on my side.

Along with the support of my girlfriend and family I think 2014 is going to be a very big year for me. I hope that others out there are getting as much out their New Year’s Resolutions as I am because I am only two months in and have already been rewarded.

Joseph Marshall

Young Professionals Connection (YPC)

The Young Professionals Connection (YPC) promotes an environment that attracts and retains young professionals in Greater Des Moines (DSM). YPC connects young professionals to each other and to the community through social, civic, charitable and professional development endeavors. YPC members have unique opportunities to grow personally and professionally and forge lasting relationships. They engage, connect and form a foundation for their future in DSM. YPC is an initiative of the Greater Des Moines Partnership.