Shit Just Got Real

A few months ago I wrote a post about how I wanted to move to London. Guess what?

We’re doing it!


Now, this wasn’t an easy process to go through. We had our wedding in June, which came with a load of pressure and stress from planning our big day. Although we’d previously decided that we wanted to go overseas, we fell in love with some house plans and got ourselves seriously sidetracked – perhaps this can be referred to as good ol’ fashioned procrastination? Eeek.

We somehow found ourselves signed up with a local building company, we’d picked our plot of land, selected all of the things we wanted in our dream house, we told everyone that we were building a house and we even paid a deposit. What the hell, right? We were really slipping into the married life cliché that we wanted to avoid and the plans to travel were rapidly disappearing out of our minds. 

Fast forward to August. Our quote for the build came back at Five. Hundred. Thousand. Dollars. In short; we noped the fuck out after we calculated that our mortgage repayments/house expenses would be $1100 a fortnight for the next 30 years. Sure, we’re fortunate enough that we could afford it in our current situation, but we’d never be able to have kids or take a holiday without seriously struggling to stay afloat. That’s not the kind of life I want to live and it definitely doesn’t align with my desire to explore the world. 

After we recovered from the near death experience of $500,000 in debt, we jumped online and literally brought the latest possible flights to London for 2018 that we could. Remember that indecisive shit that I do? I didn’t wanna risk ANOTHER change of mind and having yet another plan that we’d never follow through with. We’re now $2500 deep in airfares so theoretically there’s no turning back.

Where to from here? Well, we’re almost finished with those pesky renovations that we’ve been struggling to complete and we’re going to rent our house out as soon as they’re done. We’re moving into Todd’s mums house so that we can save as much cash as we can until we leave NZ (keep an eye out for a post about our budget and savings plan) and my Dad has offered to care for the dogs while we’re away. I’m becoming an expert lurker on all things London related, Kiwis in London/Kiwis in London Chat are possibly my most visited Facebook pages and r/London keeps me in awe most nights.  I have to keep a very exciting secret from my colleagues and employer which I can’t let slip for another 8 months or so. 

It’s all getting very real and extremely scary. 

If you’ve made the leap I’d love to hear your thoughts on savings, job opportunities and any regrets you may have. Did it all work out for you?

Shayla xx

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Driving your career forward

Have you ever been told by a lecturer at university that when you leave you will get a job in your desired field of study, 50-70 grand a year and a manager who takes the time to mentor you into a young professional? I was.

I was with the bulk majority who leave university with piling debt and no real direction as to what next. I was one in the thousands every year who leave with hope that a rewarding job finds them.

I applied for twenty jobs and did not hear back from any. I tried again a couple of months later and failed. I would get an interview and fail once again. Eventually I just gave up. It did not matter if I had awesome grades and a friendly, outgoing personality – its more than that in this fast paced, competitive economy. Employers want to know what you can bring to their organisation they do not currently have. Of course you google what it is they do, come up with some great idea/s around what it is you could bring to the table but if you do not have a plan from start to end with contingencies in mind you are no match for them.

“You can’t get a job because you don’t have experience” is a phrase you will hear all to often. “I can’t get experience because I can’t get a job” is what you will replay in your head.

Lets take it back to university… how important is the effort you put in to getting experience whilst at university? SO important! You observe and learn from others who have experience in a particular field. You learn what worked and what did not, question why, how and why not? This will separate you from the bulk majority. Developing networks is another key piece of advice I give to you because people know people who know of opportunities. This will separate you from the majority. Put yourself in the drivers seat of your own success. If you want that job, go for it. If you are not successful, ask the recruiting manager what it would take to be successful. This will separate you from some. Get involved in what you are passionate about- community events, fundraising events, culture, arts, music, business and innovation competitions. This will separate you from a few. Take a chance! This may mean moving cities, changing lifestyles, changing…you. Ensure you align your mindset with determination to create your own success and… accept that it may take you time to step up the ladder but you will get there. Stick it out!

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When I left university I created my first job in communications and events. I was using my degree, yes, but bound to a fixed term contract on $17 a hour. I was left to be autonomous and while I was more than capable at this, I failed. I forgot to ask for help and learn the ‘right from the wrong’ and as a result many of my outputs were only half achieved. I left this job in June 2015 and moved into my second job from university as a personal assistant/ recruitment coordinator. I am using my degree, bound to a permanent contract and  on $27 a hour. I have a manager who spends time listening to my questions and works with me to find the answer. I am autonomous and more than capable to deliver achievable outputs. How did I get here? I kept driving in the right direction.

If you ask the right questions, put in the effort, ask for more, learn and develop your skills in more than just your field of work I can guarantee your peers and leaders will respect you. Over time you will develop a well established brand and a reputation. If you go with what you think is right, stick with what you know and do not find the opportunities to grow yourself you become stuck.

Keep asking for more. Keep trying. Keep driving forward.

Bridget x