Proactive steps you can take if you’re worried about income.

worried about income

If you’re faced with possible job loss or a significant reduction in income, don’t panic. There are steps you can take to protect yourself and manage the situation.

 

Current conditions: many are in the same boat

The current COVID-19 crisis is putting many people’s incomes at risk.

 

Even outside of this uncertain time, few modern jobs come with strong job security.

 

This can be unnerving. At the same time, it should teach you not to take income loss personally. Don’t let it knock your confidence!

 

1. If you’re working, save what you can

If you have income coming in, save what you can. An emergency fund is your best protection.

 

2. Check if you’re eligible for assistance

The government is doing its best to provide small business relief measures, as well as financial relief for employers and employees who’ve lost income.

 

If you have a business, take the time to find out what relief you could get and apply for this.

 

If you’re an employee, find out what UIF relief you might be able to claim.

 

3. Be kind to yourself

In a situation that’s already stressful, it isn’t productive to put too much pressure on yourself.

 

Don’t waste effort worrying about things that haven’t happened yet, or that you can’t control.

 

Even if you’re faced with complete income loss, don’t begin job hunting straight away. Instead, take some time to rest. Recover and regroup. You’ll find it easier once it’s time to focus on finding new work.

 

4. Be kind to others

There’s no better way to manage your own anxiety than to help someone else.

 

5. Diversify

It’s not just financial investments that it’s good to diversify.

 

Increasingly, it makes sense to have more than one source of income.

 

Whether you offer consulting services, edit articles, fix cars, tend gardens or sell food or craft items, a side job is good protection. In some cases, it even leads to a new career path.

 

Try this article for some ideas of profitable South African side hustles for 2020, for after the lockdown ends.

 

6. Trim costs

This one is obvious – but it shouldn’t leave you feeling like you’ve lost power.

 

If you take cutting unnecessary expenses as a challenge, it can be satisfying. Regard each savings as a personal win.

 

From a financial perspective, cutting costs can be just as powerful as finding some new income.

 

7. Get back out there

If you’ve lost employment or business, get back out there as soon as you’re ready. In fact, you can start from home.

 

If you have a business, draw up a new plan for marketing it and winning new clients (or winning back old ones, once the economy starts to recover).

 

If you’ve lost a job, hit the job ads. Be methodical and patient, and don’t panic.

 

Among the leading online job platforms in South Africa are:

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