Time for 2014: Reflections and Resolutions

As my blog enters its second year of existence, I thought that now would be as good a time as any to briefly reflect on what has been an exciting year. Looking back over some of the posts from the previous 12 months, there has been a huge range of topics whirring about and I hope that there has been something to interest everybody.

Personally, I’ve spent much of the year developing as a freelancer, while outside of work I’ve thoroughly enjoyed connecting with some of the many interesting people actively contributing to the Twitter translation community (good old #xl8!). I wholeheartedly recommend it to any aspiring translators out there as the amount of friendly advice, useful information and enjoyable content constantly rolling in make it an invaluable resource.

On a different note, meanwhile, the top three most-viewed posts for the year on my blog made for particularly interesting reading. I shared them on my Twitter page a while back and here they are again for anybody who missed it:

3) Getting to grips with translation theory: A (very) brief introduction

2) Twittering Translators

1) The (un?)importance of translation-specific degrees to translation

Thanks a lot for reading and sharing, and hopefully there will be plenty more content that will grab your attention in the coming year. The range of topics in those three alone is a symbol of what I’ve tried to do – looking at all things translation!

Resolutions

But enough of the past. Now it’s time to look forward to 2014 and wonder as to what is in store for the next year. While I’m not much of a New Year’s resolution kind of person, I thought I’d try to use this post to come up with a few aims for my year and hopefully some of you will share your own on the comments, or on Twitter etc.

A good place to start looking for inspiration was this post by Herman Boel on the Alta Verba blog – ‘A translator’s ten commandments for 2014’ – and I’ve managed to come up with two personal resolutions that are quite comprehensive and sum up my aims within translation by focusing on what is important for me.

1) I want to strive to keep developing and learning

As I’ve said before, and as I’m sure many other translators will identify with, this profession is a constant quest for knowledge in a huge range of different areas. From linguistic skills to specialised knowledge, computer wizardry and business acumen, there is so much to work at and I want to ensure that I keep developing in all of these areas and ultimately get better at what I do.

This involves trying new things, embracing new opportunities to gain more experience in unfamiliar, or already-developed areas, and avoiding the pitfalls of complacency – believing that you already know enough about anything is a mistake. Furthermore, setbacks should be seen as a learning opportunity and a chance to grow further.

With projects coming in from all over, it can be difficult motivate yourself to sacrifice free time for other pursuits with less tangible rewards but I’m determined to keep developing and keep learning! Even now, I have a few writing projects underway to hone my skills outside of translation and I want to keep up with these kinds of initiatives.

2) I want to keep on doing what I love, and loving what I do

While I love translating, sometimes it’s easy to lose sight of that fact. When you’re pushing yourself to complete a particularly tricky project, it feels like hard work and it is easy to get bogged down in the task. Sometimes it is necessary to take a step back and assess where you are.

I love the projects that I work on and don’t ever want to take it for granted. I want to keep on working on projects that excite me and in areas that interest me. This ties into the first resolution as it requires constant development to stay on top of what you do and to earn respect in the field to allow you to go as far as possible.

For me, loving what I do is an extremely important consideration when it comes to work and I want it to stay that way for as long as possible.

All that remains now is to wish all of my readers, followers and fellow translators all the best for 2014, and good luck in achieving whatever goals you may set for yourself!

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