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4 Proactive Habits to Build the Career You Want Starting a new business or changing careers can feel daunting, but developing these four proactive habits will illuminate your path to success.

By Nancy Solari Edited by Kara McIntyre

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

If you're an aspiring entrepreneur but are feeling stuck when it comes to taking charge of your career path, you might need to boost your confidence with new productive habits. Building the profession you want takes long hours, creativity and lots of energy.

You can leverage your time and skills to design your dream career by adopting effective methods. The key is getting started and committing to one new routine at a time. Here are four proactive habits that will jumpstart your path to developing your ideal career.

Related: 7 Tips for Career Success

1. Accomplish weekly goals

It's important to keep your long-term vision for your career in mind, but perhaps you are feeling overwhelmed with getting started. Coming up with small, achievable goals every week will allow you to stay on track to obtaining what you really want. By creating discipline in your schedule, you'll be able to launch a successful business. This structure can be accomplished by creating self-imposed deadlines. This could be coming up with three new business strategies by the end of the week or making at least one phone call to a potential client every Monday. You might even set alerts on your phone to remind you to send emails, read for 10 minutes or journal and meditate. Finding an accountability partner is also a good way to help stay on track with your habits.

Your goals can change each week, but the essential thing is that you're setting objectives you know you can achieve. When you cross off little goals each week, you'll feel more motivated to get work done and you'll have the confidence to accomplish what you want.

2. Budget your money

It can feel daunting to consider building the career you want when you imagine the financial resources involved in getting there. Starting to budget your money immediately is the best way to be proactive for your future. Ask yourself if your career will require funds to acquire equipment, take educational courses or travel. Once you have a big picture of the monetary aspects, you can begin to budget. You might start by making a habit to deposit a fixed amount of money into a dedicated business account at the end of each week. Or you can consider whether bringing in a partner to alleviate some costs would align with your vision.

Designating one hour every week for assessing your current resources and future plans will ensure you don't feel financially stressed when working toward your dream career. When you learn how to best allocate your finances and are resourceful with saving, your money will work for you, and you'll have the freedom and security to put more passion into building your career.

Related: 5 Small Habits All Leaders Should Do to Grow Their Business

3. Utilize your network

It's always reassuring to get advice on how to succeed in a specific field. However, even if you aren't currently connected to anyone who has the career you want, there are many ways to network and form new relationships. You can join industry-based communities on Facebook or LinkedIn. If you make it a habit to read and comment on at least one post in these groups every day, you will quickly make new connections. If you are seeking hands-on experience, be proactive by calling or messaging a new professional in that field each week. You can ask to shadow them for a day or just hear their story of how they got where they are.

By making a habit of seeking connections and being willing to learn from others, you will gain insight, tips and strategies revolving around the career you want, and more doors will open for you as you build camaraderie.

4. Become more educated

Taking that leap of faith to start on a career journey requires a lot of courage, especially if you believe you're lacking a certain level of education or experience. However, the great thing is that it is never too late to become more educated. Consider forming a new habit of conducting 20 minutes of research every morning to find new resources or contacts in your field. Or instead of a daily habit, commit to listening to at least two podcast episodes related to the field you're interested in every month. If you enroll in a certification course or class about the profession you want to go into, don't wait until the last minute before an exam to study. Make a habit of always studying for an hour after dinner, which will inspire you as you wind down for the night.

You will gain so much knowledge about achieving the career you desire by being proactive in educating yourself, and forming healthy habits around this process will help prepare you to advance in your career.

Purposeful, proactive habits are beneficial because they push you to continuously evolve and take steps toward building the career you want. By focusing on small weekly goals, you will accomplish more tasks and become increasingly productive. Budgeting your money ensures future security for your career and eliminates financial stress. When you utilize your network, you form relationships with people who will teach and guide you, and finding new ways to become educated will equip you with the tools to succeed. If you stay focused and committed to these four proactive habits, you will feel empowered to achieve your dream career.

Related: The Habits of Highly Successful Entrepreneurs (Infographic)

Nancy Solari

Entrepreneur Leadership Network® Contributor

CEO of Living Full Out

Nancy Solari is an accomplished CEO, TV and radio host, business and life coach, writer and motivational speaker. As host of Nonprofit MVP and the national Living Full Out Radio Show, she shares her tools for success with audiences and organizations all around the country.

Want to be an Entrepreneur Leadership Network contributor? Apply now to join.

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