How to Make a Difference (in a Big Way!) This Year

Kate Morantz
Kate Morantz is a creative entrepreneur and blogger based in Toronto, Canada. After graduating from the Smith School of Business at Queen’s University in 2008, Kate worked in various marketing-and strategy-based roles at large organizations. In parallel, she developed a lifestyle blog as well as a handmade goods shop on the Etsy platform. In early 2017, she left her corporate job to pursue her entrepreneurial passions full time. Her blog Beyond the Safe Harbor is devoted to helping women boost their impact, master their money, and better themselves so that they can unlock their most meaningful lives. For more from Kate, visit
Personal Development

Jan 02,2018

Happy New Year! The new year is upon us and for many that brings a time of reflection and goal setting. What are our resolutions for the year? And what do we hope to accomplish? How can we boost our impact? And how do we make it stick? Today’s post shares some ideas on how to make a difference in 2018 and beyond.


First, define what success looks like in terms of making a difference. What change do you hope to make this year? What goals, if met, would have the largest impact on different parts of your life and the lives of others? Where do you want to boost your impact?

To make sure you don’t miss any, create goals for different areas of your life including home and family, finances, career, and personal. And if there is a specific area you want to focus on, you can create more (or deeper) goals in that area. For example, if you really want to make a difference at work, career can be your primary area of focus.


Second, identify the specific actions you’ll need to take to achieve these goals. What tangible steps can you take each day, week, and month to get closer to success?

Using our example of wanting to make a difference at work, one tactic may be to mentor a more junior employee. Your action plan may involve specific steps like signing up to be a mentor, and mentoring your mentee on a weekly basis.


Third, your success can be highly influenced by your habits (just check out this book!). What regular practices can you put in place to help you succeed? Is it waking up earlier to get more done? Meditating? Planning out the week ahead every Friday to help stay focused on the right things?

Brainstorm what habits or tools you can put in place to create an environment that supports your goals and your action plan.

With our career example in mind, one habit you may consider is coming into work an hour earlier to work ahead on a special project. If you repeat this behaviour every day, you’ll create a powerful cumulative effect in the amount of work you get done.


Last, at regular intervals, check in on how you’re doing against your goals and tactics. What’s working and how can you build off that success? Are there any areas of challenge? If so, how can you correct them?

My advice is to stay focused on the big goals and overarching things you want to accomplish. For example, let’s say you’re working on a special project that gets cancelled. And it was a tactic to help you achieve your broader goal of making a difference at your company. While it can be easy to get discouraged (since it was a concrete way to achieve your goal!) all is not lost. You can find other ways of achieving that same goal beyond and outside of that one special project.

So there you have it – how to make a difference in your world this year. Remember to identify your goals, create an action plan, put in place supporting habits, and schedule regular check ins. These steps will help you boost your impact and make you unstoppable. Good luck!

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