It’s finally happened! You’ve landed a great new job and it’s time for your career to really kick off. Whether you’ve just graduated from uni, or you’re trying a new career path, you’ve worked hard to get here and you’re ready to make your mark. Once you’ve shared the news and celebrated with family and friends, you can start planning for success, both in this job and whatever follows.
Starting your career with a solid plan, a healthy routine and some good ‘life admin’ habits now can set you up for long term success.
Here are some handy tips to get you off and running.
1. Get a budget going
Managing and saving money takes organisation and discipline, but it’s easier than you think. Following a budget simply involves taking stock of what’s coming in, what’s going out, and what’s leftover. More importantly, it can show you which areas you may need to cut back on to help achieve any savings goals you’ve set for yourself. Try to not over complicate your budget, automate your money wherever you can, and set yourself some clear, achievable goals. Even if it’s just very basic, a budget is one of the best things you can do to help set yourself up for financial success. It doesn’t have to be difficult or complicated — it just needs to be clear, accurate and have specific goals. And with endless smartphone apps at your disposal these days, technology can help make it easy.
2. Make sleep a priority
Getting the right amount of sleep for your body can help give you the focus and energy you need to bounce into the work day. On the flip side, sleep deprivation can have a range of effects on the body, impacting memory, decision-making, reaction time and concentration. It’s good practice to get into a nighttime routine and stick to it. Avoid drinking coffee and alcohol and finish eating a couple of hours before bed. Use soft lighting in your bedroom and minimise the use of phones and tablets at bedtime, as it’s been suggested that they can interfere with the body's natural circadian rhythm, which can stop you from going to sleep and affect your alertness the following day.
3. Meal prep like a boss
You don’t need colour-coded rows of plastic containers and thousands of Instagram followers to succeed at meal planning — you just need to get organised. Prepping meals in advance can save you time, money and help you stick to a healthy eating plan. Keep your meals relatively simple and stick to dishes that you know you do well and enjoy. Schedule a couple of meal prep sessions each week to change it up - you don’t have to do it all in one hit. Raw food options like chopped vegetables and fruit are quick and healthy for eating on-the-go at work. Prepare batches of grilled meat and lots of veggie options ready to cook and simply change up the sauce, dressing or herbs each time for different flavours.
4. Consider a diary
With bills to pay, appointments to keep, meetings to prepare for, social catch-ups and things like regular exercise all competing for your time, it’s easy to occasionally miss or forget something. Putting all the information in one place can be a great way to get organised and feel in control of your busy life. Keep a diary or smartphone calendar handy and when you commit to something, put it straight into your calendar. At the start of each week, put some time in for any life admin that needs doing, and once it’s in there, stick to it.
5. Get your house in order
While you’re climbing the corporate ladder, it’s worth considering a safety net to catch you if something goes wrong. Options like income protection insurance can give you the peace-of-mind that if you’re unable to work for an extended period, you won’t end up going into debt just to cover your basic living expenses. Income protection cover can replace up to 70% of your income if you’re unable to work due to illness or injury.
Starting your career is one of the most exciting times in your life, and there’s probably a lot of change going on. Getting organised early can help you feel more in control, so you can focus on enjoying life in the workforce as you settle in.