First off, let me start this with a big hearty “Hello!” and a cyber hug from me to you.
Oh my God it has been a long time! Writing this feels like seeing an old friend after months of being nose deep in revision books or travelling abroad but it is definitely good to see you again! I will be writing more often from here on out and I’ve written a few blog posts already to make sure that I have content to upload at least monthly (and good content at that) because who wants to read half-arsed financial advice?! Not me.
I’m sure you’ve noticed that my last blog post was around September and boy do I have a lot to tell you about since then. As with all good stories it starts with the tale of hope, has a few rough tumbles and the hero emerges victorious! You’ll love it. I’m in a really good place at the minute and I have some exciting news to share so now is the perfect time to get back on the writing bandwagon whilst I have some time.
The first piece of news is that I’m on annual leave from work (Crowd roars…) during the beautiful April/May weather stint we’re having in the UK at the minute and I’ve just fixed up the garden so I can write this out in the sun or crawl back inside when the clouds poop on the party. Maybe I should start a little earlier in the story though…
Dear Lord! September feels like such a freaking long time ago, a completely different world away and I feel like a different person! In June I had moved in with my partner Different-P, we were all excited, honey-mooning in our lovey dovey adultiness and enjoying spending all of this extra time together! It was great no longer travelling 2 hours to see him and not needing two of every thing, yay. I was however still in my soul-sucking old job with my micromanaging helldog of a boss. Going to work gave me mild anxiety, stress, sleepless nights and completely knocked any kind of confidence I had grown over the years. I was pretty unhappy to say the least and even worse was that half of my team were either off sick or had left the job so I was now doing twice the work including shift work and standby which made life really difficult. This ship was sinking and the captain was stood pointing at the holes we hadn’t repaired rather than helping to plug them. I decided to flee.
One Sunday night I wrote a kickass CV, donned* my best interview dress and got myself a shiny new job that paid £10,000 more than the previous one with no standby or overtime! GREAT! I was determined to make sure that I had a better relationship with my new manager than my old one, not that this can always be controlled but I had learned some lessons along the way. Thankfully my new team are incredible, positive and hard-working people and I fit right in. I have found myself as a completely new person in this new role, I’m receiving praise from higher management on my work and got an interview to become a manager in the team. I enjoy the work and continue to learn more every day. The confidence I lost has come back and then some!
“A bad manager can take a good staff and destroy it, causing the best employees to flee and the remainder to lose all motivation”.
This quote really spoke to me when I was struggling in work. Although everything you do at work is your own choice and you should always do your best, sometimes you’re not getting the right guidance. Feedback especially needs to be timely and relevant, I’ve heard many horror stories about a boss denying someone a bonus because of some feedback from years ago or feedback that the employee was never made aware of to defend or to improve. Sometimes your best won’t be enough because nothing will. When work starts affecting your private life and mental health then you have to leave. You’ll be very glad you do!
Some people worry that it’s “better the devil you know” but with the law of averages, if your boss is far below average in the way they treat you and help you to achieve your goals then chances are your new boss will be at least average! Why not go for it?
I hope to learn one day how to be a great boss and to treat my staff right. I want to be the kind of boss that motivates and challenges and works with a team to make a better department. Fingers crossed!
We had some bad luck with a terrible letting agency in the Manchester area who illegally kicked us out of the house with about three weeks notice, over Christmas. So that was hella stressful! They even sent over some high up manager to bully us out of the house which is legally harassment and a huge big NO-NO in the world of letting. If this had happened to more vulnerable people than ourselves this could have ruined someones life! They then tried to claim some damage had been done to the property upon us leaving and were trying to claim the whole deposit back. Luckily for us, I had taken pictures of everything in pristine condition and so we took the battle to the Tenancy Deposit scheme and showed them all of the pictures and the Deposit claim was dropped in our favour. Now that we have that back we plan to file a complaint against them with the local government to make sure they’re aware of the company’s illegal and harassing behaviours.
Even luckier for us is that I.know.how.to.live.cheap.
As soon as the notice was given and whilst we were disputing our leaving the house, we started looking online for a House of Multiple Occupancy posting (HMO). This is how I’ve lived for about the last three years (and essentially most of my life in my parent’s HMO heh). It’s an all-bills-included room for rent with shared kitchen and living areas essentially. Nothing glamorous but it’s the perfect place to live while you save up! I managed to find a double room for the both of us within travelling distance to work for £368 a month. This is what we were paying in bills alone to begin with so a great deal for us to share! This is the only reason we let the letting agents kick us out of the house- greener pastures baby!
In the meantime
So in the meantime whilst all of this was going on: Different-P and I are still much in love, I’m still Vegan, I tried a zero-waste month and I have still been saving towards retirement and our other big goal at the minute- A house deposit! My current cash savings are at just over £29,000, I have some £3,000 in investments and I also bought a car outright within that time as my new job didn’t come with a vehicle like my old job did. We are in the process of spending that money plus some of Different-P’s money on a house that we’ve found and absolutely love, the offer has gone in, mortgage is complete… and now we wait. All being well, we will move in mid-September.
So lots of exciting things going on and we’re in a good position now with the end of the tunnel in sight, I’ll try not to dilly-dally as much with writing these posts. Please let me know if you have any requests for a post then send me an email at Differentli.firstname.lastname@example.org.
Have a great day, thanks for reading!
*donned= got dressed into in Britain talk