When I was made redundant back in 2012, I wondered how my family were going to survive. We had a mortgage and bills to pay, and no real safety net aside from the money I was handed as I left the building. How do you go from a job which covers everything you pay out every month, to zero?
What I have discovered over the last few years, is that a job is just that; a job. It doesn’t matter what it is, it’s just simply a job. A role which we go to in order to meet the needs that we are accustomed to. When you change what you’re used to, that’s when you can break out of the job (if you want to!) to do something you’re really interested in. Of course, there are a handful of people in this world who can honestly say they are doing their dream job. Then there’s the rest of us…
What I have discovered over the last few years, is that a job is just that; a job.
The idea that everything you have built up and worked for over a career can suddenly be taken away from you in the form of redundancy is quite scary. How would you cope if you lost your job today? This is when I decided that I wanted to have my fingers in many pies. Well, not many, just a few pies. To keep life interesting, every day different and also, as there’s no real security in being self-employed, enhance my security a little bit.
I changed my mindset on redundancy and turned it into an opportunity. If you have one job, if you then lose that job, you have no jobs. That’s fairly obvious. However, if, like me, you have a job where you work for a few different clients, even if you lose a client, you still have the others. Whilst it certainly would be a terrible day if all my clients decided to show up at their businesses one day and send me an email saying they no longer needed me, the likelihood of that happening is slim. Yes, I’ve lost clients but then I’ve gained others.
The idea that everything you have built up and worked for over a career can suddenly be taken away from you in the form of redundancy is quite scary.
Aside from that, I have a couple of side projects which keep me occupied, too. I’m in the process of closing one of these down which I’ve had open for the last five years – as the demand for it isn’t there any more – so the price of insurance, couriers, and gear outweighs what I’d be making. As that closes, it frees me up to try something else. I have an e-commerce website which sits there and brings in a little bit of capital now and then, that being mainly around Christmas time. I have written a book which is available on Amazon. I have a monetised YouTube channel.
These ideas aren’t going to make me millions of pounds, but I don’t want that. The lifestyle of being able to do one thing one day, and something else the next is exciting. It’s creative. That lifestyle also allows me to spend time with my kids while they’re young (when they actually want to spend time with me!), instead of being out the house from 7am-7pm and missing the time when they’re awake.
If you have a talent and passion for something, turn to it – it might just keep your head above water one day.
What I’m trying to get across is that whilst the money might not be as good or as stable as a ‘real’ full time job, if you turn things around there is actually security that comes with having your ‘fingers in many pies’ – security that a solo job doesn’t offer. I have volunteered my time at food banks where I have seen people from high paid roles need help as they’ve lost their jobs through redundancy. It really can happen to anyone and we shouldn’t shy away from that, nor be afraid of it.
It’s not for everyone, but I wouldn’t think twice about setting up a ‘side hustle’ in my spare time to put money away as a safety net if the worst should happen. This could be making soap and selling it online. Knitting could be your craft or you might be a fantastic cupcake creator. You never know what it might turn into. If you have a talent and passion for something, turn to it – it might just keep your head above water one day, or even become a genuine source of income.