Over 4 million Americans said goodbye to their jobs as of August 2021, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). That’s almost 3 percent of the workforce.
Known as the Great Resignation, it is a phenomenon that continues to baffle even the biggest companies in the country. But that’s not really your problem. You must be thinking about how to be part of that, especially if you’re stuck in a job you no longer want.
To make sure the transition is less stressful, consider doing these first:
1. Bring Your Big Expenses Down
You can be gung ho with your resignation and say to hell with your bills. But this attitude can lead to serious problems later, especially with your credit score. So before you resign, first make sure your monthly expenses (rent and bills) are down to a reasonable amount.
Here are some tips on how to do that:
- Consider refinancing your home loan: The home loan interest rates have been increasing, but compared to the previous years, it is still a good time to refinance your property. This way, you can reduce your monthly interest payments and extend the life of your loan until such time you’ll have enough money to speed up the repayment.
- Invest in a thermostat: This nifty device can help you spend less on electricity, especially during the winter. You can set up an automated heating and cooling system that only kicks in when the room is occupied. It can save you about $130 annually.
- Negotiate your bills: Most service providers offer discounts or waive monthly charges for loyal customers who have been with them before the economic downturn. Call up your suppliers and ask if they can give you a rate cut.
2. Build an Emergency Fund
No matter how well you prepare for your resignation, life will always throw some curveballs. That’s why you need an emergency fund. It’s money you can tap into when things get tough.
You can use this money to avoid getting deeper into debt. With it, you can repair your vehicle, cover out-of-pocket healthcare costs, and other kinds of emergencies. (No, you cannot use it to finance your much-needed vacation.)
Most experts suggest saving at least three months’ worth of your expenses, but that can be overwhelming for a lot of people. If you don’t earn enough, saving this much could mean staying on the job longer.
Here’s a piece of advice: don’t worry too much about the “how much” for now. Instead, start saving as much as you can. You can set aside at least 10 to 15 percent of your income. You can begin with a thousand dollars. Automate the process and create a separate bank account for your savings.
3. Consider Getting Side Hustles
Unless you have enough emergency funds to last you until you’re ready to work again, you need to earn money. The bills don’t stop coming just because you’ve decided not to go to work.
Fortunately, these days, you can pursue a lot of side hustles such as freelancing. It is a good option because it allows you to set your own hours and work from home. You can choose what type of work you want to do depending on your skills.
You can also join the shared economy by working as an Uber driver or Doordash delivery driver. Another option is to look around you and check out items you can sell online. It could be work clothes you won’t need anytime soon, furniture pieces that are only adding clutter to your space, or some of your electronics.
4. Make a Plan
Resigning from work is not a spur-of-the-moment decision. It requires careful thinking and sound reasoning, especially if you have kids to provide for.
While it’s possible to get by without earning an income, the journey will be easier with a solid plan of action. So before you resign, make sure to do the following:
- Make a list of all your bills and debts. Make sure to include the minimum due amount every month. Include how much you’ll need for each expense until you can go back to work.
- Do the same with your existing investments and other savings, if any.
- Figure out what your income will be from now on. This includes unemployment benefits, if applicable.
While you don’t have to pressure yourself to do something immediately, you can at least provide yourself with a vision of what you want to achieve. Do you want to set up a business with your skills, enter a different career, or look for a company with more benefits?
When it comes to resigning, there is no one-size-fits-all plan for everyone. We all have different circumstances, and we need to consider these before deciding that can affect us too much. However, these ideas will help you navigate unknown territory with more calmness and confidence until you know for sure what you want to do.