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You can pay off your debts and cut back on luxuries, you can get your bills down to as low as they’ll possibly go. But if you’re still struggling financially, it’s clearly not a budgeting issue but a cash flow problem. There are ways you can earn more money, side hustles are a great way to make some extra pocket money doing something you enjoy, but your primary source of income is almost always going to come from your job. If you’re unhappy at work or not earning enough money to get by, it’s time to play the long game. Make plans and change your life now, so that you can get a better job later on and make everything much more manageable. In five years time you could be stuck in the same situation as what you’re in now- or you could be well on your way to a much brighter financial future. What will you choose? If it’s the latter, he’s how you can go about it.
1.Decide on the career you want
First things first, you need to decide what you actually want to do. Do you want to stay in the line of work you’re in now, and just earn a promotion? Or do you want a complete change. It’s important to be realistic here, if you’re already a little later in life for example then stating that you want to be a neurosurgeon probably isn’t the wisest goal when becoming any kind of doctor takes up to (and sometimes over) fifteen years. Think carefully about the career you want, if you’re unhappy where you are now, work out why. As well as the pay you’re likely to get, you’ll need to think about the working hours and how these fit with your lifestyle. For example, lots of healthcare jobs work on a shift basis which can be tricky when you have a family. You do have rights when it comes to certain things- for example, according to Perkins Asbill, employers are required to provide employees with a room expressly for lactation purposes. You may also be entitled to some help from the state to cover childcare costs too, so there are ways to work around having a family, but you’ll need to consider how it can work for you. Decide what it is you want from a job to be satisfied. Are you a goal oriented person that likes working to targets? Do you want to help people and make a genuine difference? Perhaps you have a love of animals or children and want to work with either? You might have a passion such as art, music, baking or anything else that you’d like to turn into a career. There are so many different directions you could go in, so think carefully about what would make you happy in your career, and what kind of job you’re actually looking to get.
- Improve your education
Once you’ve decided on the career you want, in most cases, your next step will be achieving the right qualifications. A degree in a related subject will often get you on the first step of the ladder, depending on your situation you may need to do a foundation degree first. If you already have a degree, even if it’s not in a similar subject it might still be enough for you to progress to the next stage. In some cases, you’ll use your degree to get an entry level job in the field you want to work in, and can then aim to work your way up the ladder. In other types of careers, you’re best studying for a masters and then even a PhD or other further qualification on top. Not only will this extra education help you to stand out, but you’ll also be able to walk into a higher, better paid position. You could go back to university full time, or you could continue in the job you’re in now, and study part time from home. This enables you to continue earning money and paying your bills while studying towards your future career. Not everyone is in a position where they can give up their job and study full time, so this is an option if you can’t do that.
- Get some experience
Gaining experience can be a catch 22 situation. No one will hire you without experience, but you can’t gain experience if no one will hire you. However, you can work on a voluntary basis, this can teach you all kinds of skills and give you an idea of what it will be like in the kind of career you’re aiming towards. Relevant experience is always good, for example shadowing an experienced worker in the role you eventually want to do. But any skills you can gain in the field will be worth getting. For example, if you want to work in a healthcare role then any experience in a hospital is likely to help you and will look good on your CV. A law enforcement or any kind of criminological role, courts, police stations and prisons all make great places to volunteer. If you’re going to be working with children in any concept, schools, play centres, nurseries and children’s hospitals again could all be places you could look to volunteer in. It shows an employer that you’re serious, and looks good on your resume.
- Upgrade your resume
Speaking of your resume, you’ll want to make this the best it can possibly be. Throughout your time studying towards your new career and doing voluntary work to gain new skills, think of other things you can do that would look good on it. Could you start up some interesting hobbies? Employers use these as a way of finding out more about candidates, so think of hobbies that show off the skills you’re trying to show that you have. For example, if the role you’re looking is very team-based, you could start up a team sport to show that you’re good at working with others. If the job requires planning and logic, perhaps you could get into something like competitive chess? You could take some smaller courses, anything from health and safety training to first aid again all look good on your cv. If you don’t already drive, having a license is something that can be favoured by some employees, especially if the role requires some travel or the workplace is a little further out and difficult to reach with public transport.
- Nail the interview
After all of your hard work, it’s time to show potential employers what you’re made of. Dress the part, run through lots of interview questions and walk in there with a positive mindset. You might not snag a job first time, but stick with it and present yourself in the best way and eventually you will be offered the job that you want. From there, you can spend the next few years working up the ladder!