Author Topic: Career Advice Wanted  (Read 594 times)

TheFrenchCat

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Career Advice Wanted
« on: June 15, 2020, 07:46:08 PM »
I'm 30, married with one 4 year old who, covid pending, starts full-time kindergarten this fall.  Our current after-tax-and-healthcare income is about $58k per year, most of which is from my husband's job, and about $10k of which is from my part time job.  I've been in this job for 4 years, working remotely for a minimum of 16 hours a week and averaging 17 hours a week.  This job extremely flexible which has been vital to my being able to keep up with it and a child, despite chronic health concerns.  They have no problem with me taking off whenever I need, which I in turn don't abuse and try to make up hours after I'm feeling better.  So, if at all possible I want to keep this job. 

However, I feel like now that my daughter is getting older, I want to do more to help us reach FI sooner, if I can.  I average about $14 per hour at my current job and could work up to 129 hours a month with them.  So if I doubled down and just worked more hours during the school day, I estimate I could add about $8k to our take home pay.  While this would probably be the easiest route and would help, I wonder if there's something more lucrative I could do with 15-20 hours a week or so.

More background:  I have a bachelors in psych, which I planned to use to go into counseling.  That didn't work out and isn't an option.  During undergrad and grad school I also did research and learned I'm pretty good with data, spreadsheets and basic statistics and really enjoy that work.  If I could be a lifelong graduate assistant in a psych program, I'd do that.  Or just enter data all day (I used to literally do that every Thursday and I loved it).  Also, I like working with people and am good at it, but too much of it is draining. 

I've been trying to think of jobs that fit my skills/interests and might have the flexibility of working from home, and I've recently thought of bookkeeping.  It seems like it could be a good fit, and I've been reading from people doing that from home and making better money than I am now.  For now I'm trying to learn some basics from free online resources just to see how I might like it. I'm not sure if I'd rather work for a local company and see if I can convince them to let me work from home, or, like some have done, start my own business, which is something I had never considered since I've never had a good idea for one. 

Sorry for the novel.  If you have any advice at all, I'd love to hear it!  And if you need anymore information, please let me know.  Thanks!

Laura33

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Re: Career Advice Wanted
« Reply #1 on: June 16, 2020, 07:28:40 AM »
You mention health concerns.  How often do you have issues, and how long does it take you to recover?  Are we talking hours, days, weeks?  Are your flare-ups triggered/exacerbated by stress?  I think that is the most important consideration here.  All the money in the world isn't going to do you any good if your health won't allow you to do it, or if you push yourself so hard that you drive yourself into the ground.  So pay attention to deadlines and turnaround times when you're looking for new options.  For example, if you go into an area where short turnarounds are expected and/or deadlines are firm (such as a government filing date), that will be much more difficult for you to manage than an area in which deadlines are more flexible. 

Other than that, sorry, I have no actual marketable skills, so I can't be much help.  ;-)

mozar

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Re: Career Advice Wanted
« Reply #2 on: June 16, 2020, 09:35:54 AM »
With bookkeeping there are a lot of hard deadlines.  For example if you are helping with taxes, you are going to be putting in a lot of work in April. And you're going to at least need a certificate (in quickbooks or something) in order to be competitive in the market.
Data science is a whole different field you could look into. So is statistics.
But because of automation, I doubt there's going to be many jobs as a typest/data entry, going forward.

SunnyDays

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Re: Career Advice Wanted
« Reply #3 on: June 16, 2020, 09:38:19 AM »
I also have a grad degree in psychology.  HATED research and stats though, and would have paid someone any amount of money to do the data analyses for me.  Maybe you can capitalize on your interest/ability there?  Post some ads at your nearest university with a graduate psych dept as an assistant.  Or a tutor.  Psych types tend not to be very strong in maths.

MissPeach

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Re: Career Advice Wanted
« Reply #4 on: June 16, 2020, 12:48:17 PM »
If you are looking at bookkeeping I would recommend small business that are too small to hire their own or seniors who need help with things like paying bills. Those types of gigs are usually just a few hours per week. Most of the companies use something like Quickbooks which is easy to learn. They still have deadlines but for really small business most are quarterly or less.

TheFrenchCat

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Re: Career Advice Wanted
« Reply #5 on: June 17, 2020, 10:15:52 AM »
Thank you all for the great advice!

I can normally recover in a few hours, which can be just enough to miss a shift now.  That was good advice to consider about deadlines.  In the past I have generally pushed myself through deadlines, but it takes a lot out of me.  Which would be harder now with a child, especially if schools close again. 

I like the idea of maybe pursuing a few side gigs that were mentioned.  Especially tutoring psych students, which I hadn't thought of.  That might also get me some exposure to new research ideas, which I miss.  Edit:  I think for now though, if I want to make more money, doubling down on my current hours when I have free time sounds like a good option.