A year ago I had a very clear idea of ââwhat my life would be like. I had about eight months left from my Sport Science degree at the University of East London, which I enrolled with the goal of becoming a stepping stone to a physical education teacher at a school. But being on that stage when I graduated this summer (I honestly didn’t want to do all the dresses and hats, but as the only person in my family who went to college, I knew my mom would be proud ) I wondered if it was still best for me. I knew it was definitely time to stand on my own two feet, but I wasn’t sure what it actually looked like after three years of studying, which made me reflect on my path.
Learn to be independent
Moving away from home will always be difficult, but as a more mature student it came with completely different concerns. I didn’t want to go to college to find out who I was – I already knew – but I was scared that I wouldn’t fit in, make friends, and cope with class and essay writing. It was also extremely tough financially. Suddenly I was paying rent and bills in London, having to support myself and taking time to study. Then there were a ton of other life skills that I needed to improve – like laundry! Of course, my family had a washing machine, but Mom seemed to magically take care of it for me. Now everything was my responsibility – and I had to do it on my own.
I feel like I just muddled through in the first year, but in the second and third years I got into a groove. I’ve learned that for me the key to managing almost anything is to sit down and write a schedule. Whatever it was – lessons, homework, budgeting, time for socializing, tackling the laundry basket – with a little planning it was all doable.
I wish I had access to more support, especially in my first year. That’s why i love Barclays LifeSkillswhich has a range of free, bite-sized curricula and toolkits available to young people to help them; from time management and Curriculato identify you personal skills and make them work for you. It is free money skills Tips could really have helped me balance my income and expenses without it getting as stressful as trying to figure it all out for myself.
I took some tips and tricks on board to help me now. There is an awesome tutorial on this how to deal with debt – and the feelings that go with it. Although I don’t have too much debt after college, I know how it can scare you, so it was very helpful to watch the short video and see how I could improve my current expenses.
While at college, I started a personal fitness company, Sharp Training, in London with my friend Rae, who I met at university. We coach young athletes and support them with weekly “Mindful Athletes” sessions. We teach young people about determination, resilience, making decisions and how to be the best on the field, on the pitch or wherever their sport is taking place. But in reality we are teaching them a range of skills that they can transfer from sport to their everyday lives.
Improve my business skills
Founding my own company appealed to me because I realized that I would rather be my own boss. I remember how daunting it was to apply for my first job at a gym, especially knowing what exactly to put on my resume. My resume has been way too wordy – and pages long – for years as I’ve tried to cover every aspect of myself in the hope that they will see something they will like. But the following Advice from LifeSkills, I’ve now tweaked and streamlined it – I’m just keeping the relevant information. It is a relief to know that it is good to be ready for all other future occasions.
It is the same with future interviews. I firmly believe in just being yourself in interview scenarios, but when it comes down to it I get pretty nervous so that all of this can go out the window. One of the LifeSkills tutorials helped me remember the importance of Think about my body language in situations like this and how I can change my mood – and the way people see me – through the things I do or hear before I walk through that door. Such holistic advice really appeals to me.
Getting that first paycheck was great, but then it becomes important to know what to do with it, something I was definitely not good at initially. I would suddenly see all the money in my account, get excited and spend it! I’ve now learned that once I get paid, I have to categorize it – or “pots of money,” as I like to call them. For example, I have one pot that is my rent, another that covers my bills for the month and the money I need to go out. This has helped me stay debt free every month and gives me a sense of control.
I’m also interested in continuing to work on the on-the-job skills that are needed in any job – things like time management, speak with confidence and the best way interact with colleagues and customers who don’t come overnight, but luckily all of them covered with LifeSkills. These skills are relevant for life; Just because I’m my own boss right now doesn’t mean I can get away with it without really thinking about it and improving it.
Look to the future
Because of this, I’m currently doing some of the other LifeSkills, especially when it comes to my business. Everything I’ve learned about starting my own business I’ve learned through trial and error – and there have been some along the way, so I’m always on the lookout for helpful advice. One thing I didn’t think about much until recently is how to keep my data safe online. LifeSkills has a number of really helpful videos to help you spot potential fraud cases, strengthen your passwords and protect yourself from fraud, which made me much more alert. There are also some good workshops too proactivity, creativity, guide and Resiliencethat should help me hone those skills and develop my mindset for work now that I am no longer a student.
I want to achieve great things. The ultimate dream would be to have my own youth center where I could train and care for children – especially those who may be disadvantaged or disadvantaged. But I try not to look too far into the future as things can get overwhelming. I don’t know how to start realizing my own center now, so I try to focus on the present.
I’m keeping the option of becoming a teacher at a school open, but for now I’ve parked it at least for the next year because I want to stay present – and I also like the idea of ââworking for myself. I get my fulfillment as a teacher from the kids we train and I want to focus 100% on business now as I don’t have to juggle my time with university.
I really believe our learning journey never ends and even though I’m on the other side of the university now, I am constantly trying to work on myself and improve my skills. A few weeks ago I was feeling a little flat, so I went back to what I had learned during that difficult time at college and sat down and planned my next few weeks to make sure I planned the meditation for myself in time , write in a journal and put in daily affirmations, all the things that make me feel healthier. The difference in four weeks has been remarkable and I feel I’m back on the right track and can focus more on my personal life, work and growing business. I’m not entirely sure what the future holds, but I am committed to this moment and am the best version of myself I can be.
To learn more about money and work skills, visit barclayslifeskills.com