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“Maxed out.” Whether it’s your time, your energy, or your line of credit, you’re spent just from trying to keep up. If you love what you do, you wake up with purpose and the daily grind doesn’t get you down. In our recent interview with Jeanne Patti, she pointed out how so many people sit and wait for a golden opportunity to find them, instead of pursuing the right role. “You’ve got to find what you love. If you haven’t found it yet, keep looking. Don’t settle. As with all matters of the heart, you’ll know it when you find it.” – Steve Jobs.

Are you unhappy in your current position? You shouldn’t feel trapped by a job you hate just because you are dependent on a regular paycheck. It’s important to create a cushion in your bank account so that you have the freedom to leave a toxic workplace. We have collected some strategies so you can get ahead of your debts and create a safety net, giving you freedom to find the job you love.

According to a recent poll, at least 25% of the Millennial generation – 18 to 34 year olds – have over $30,000 in debt. If your main financial concerns are haunting student loans or other credit woes, here are three key elements to help you manage: accountability for your money, finding an additional form of income, and developing your mind and personal brand to be an asset in your market.

Accountability

Like exercising, healthy eating, or meditation, financial accountability is part of a holistic approach to wellness and has to be a conscious effort. Basic strategy is to learn about your credit score (if you’ve been avoiding that monster under your bed,) and develop a budget. Set aside a Sunday afternoon to organize your finances and create a plan that is effective, practical, and flexible. Avoid that new car, sure, it’s pretty, but the extra car payment is a drag on your budget. Rather buy a used car, invest the extra $200 a month is savings towards a new one and the other $200 a month to pay off your student loan. Before you know it, you’ll have the cash to buy a better car and the amount you owe on your student loan will evaporate!

Supplemental Income

Working income is the most common form of income: the amount of work you put into it is the amount of money you get out of it. (I.e.: Salaried/hourly work.) The issue here is that your income is constrained to your time. No work? No money. You are not defined by your job, and having a career wider than 9-5 allows you to expand your sphere of influence and explore other interests or opportunities. Freelancing, consulting, or investing are all viable options to help you create a secure foundation. This is where investments come in. Warren Buffett, legendary CEO of Berkshire Hathaway, bought his first stock when he was 11 years old. He recommends others to invest money in a S&P 500 index fund. If that 11 year old had invested that $114 stock in a S&P 500, that money would be valued at $400,000 today. Pretty sure any of us would be ecstatic with an extra couple hundred thousand dollars… no?

Study & Development

The average starting salary for a college graduate is $50,000. Whether that’s your starting salary or your goal salary, you must be able to market yourself for a well-paying career. Basics of promoting your personal brand are knowing how to create and format a resume, and interview for a job. Once you land the job, your next task is to stay relevant and valuable in the workplace. Be a hungry learner. Warren Buffett, “The Oracle of Omaha,” doesn’t leave learning in universities, and learns the most in these two ways: reading, and studying the success of others. That doesn’t sound too bad, does it? Buffett encourages others to read 500 pages a day, saying, “that’s how knowledge works. It builds up, like compound interest.” Incorporate development into your everyday schedule, whether it’s as simple as listening to an audiobook on your commute, or reading an influencer’s inspirational blog before bed. Track every educational or networking opportunity you take advantage of, and use that as a selling point with your supervisor.

No matter what our current income is, we find a way to spend it. It happens. The key is mapping out your income and automating what you can so that you don’t blink and have an empty bank account. If you want to have a more secure foundation so that you aren’t trapped by a job you hate, these are your starting strategies. Knowing that you have the freedom to leave opens doors to find your dream job! If you’re ready to find that perfect fit, reach out to Sandra to discuss the possibilities.

Do you have a favorite tip for finding your financial footing and getting out of debt? Tell us about it!