How to Make More Money At Your Full-Time Job

Do you feel stuck at your current salary? Here's exactly how to start earning more at your 9-5 job.Who doesn’t want to make more money at their 9-5 job? It’s common for people to feel like they aren’t being paid enough for what they do at work. Sometimes, though, instead of doing anything to try to earn a raise, people feel stuck with what they are making.

Clearly, companies are trying to get the most bang for their buck. If you’re okay with an annual 2-4% raise, your employer could continue that pattern every year. While you probably shouldn’t make a big stink and complain to your employer about your current salary, there is plenty that you can do to prove you deserve a raise and actually get one.

Here’s how to make more money at your 9-5.

1. Know Your Worth

It’s hard to know what you want your salary to be if you don’t know what is realistic. Salaries depend on many metrics, including years of experience, where you’re working, what industry you work in, job title, location, and education. A lot of people have a salary in their head of what they would like to be paid, but unfortunately, that is often unrealistic.

Continue reading “How to Make More Money At Your Full-Time Job”

10 Tips to Improve Your LinkedIn Profile

Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat…you likely have a few of these, if not all.

Probably the most taken for granted social media site is LinkedIn. Where I utilize my Instagram page to excessive pictures of my pets (cat lady status), my LinkedIn is much more important to me.

I may not check it as frequently as my other social media sites, but I make sure that my LinkedIn page is always on point. Why does it matter, you ask? What does LinkedIn benefit me? LinkedIn shows that you are competent, professional, connected, current, and serious.

I cannot tell you how many connections I have made via LinkedIn inviting me to apply for jobs or to connect to someone major in my network. Yes, it is overwhelming to begin, but here are 10 simple tips to start and strengthen your LinkedIn page.

1. Choose a clear, close-up photo

If you have a professional photo, great! Use that. But if you do not, at the very least, find a close up photo of only you.

Crop out your boy, your friends, or your cat. There should be no confusion as to who you are and it really does help to put a face to a name.

Also, as many of us are young college students or recent graduates, please try to avoid pictures taken in bars. It is more obvious to others than you would think. Profile pictures on LinkedIn are just as important as profile pictures on Facebook.

2. Write a personal summary

Yes, objective statements in resumes are outdated. But what I love about LinkedIn is that it is secondary to your resume. Typical resume rules do not totally apply!

You have more freedom to truly express yourself, and the personal summary provides your chance to do so. Tell a little about your story, your goals, your work history, and let your personality shine through!

Think of it as that part in an interview when the interviewer asks you to “tell us a little about yourself.” This can either draw interest or boredom, so take some time to write a brief statement.

3. Drop new connections a note

Did you know you can personally message non-premium members? Use this to your advantage. Rather than “connecting” (LinkedIn’s term for a friend request), with a past professor who may not remember you, feel free to send them a line to re-introduce yourself and offer availability to be open to any questions they may have. It doesn’t hurt, and it shows you are taking control of your future.

4. Endorse connections for skills

It takes 1 second to endorse people for a skill listed on their profile. Do it for a few people, and likely they will return the favor, enhancing both your profile and your visibility on the site! I recommend listing more specific skills than Microsoft Word, Proofreading, or Customer Service. The more specific you are, the more specialized you look.

5. Ask for and give recommendations

Along with point number 4, receiving recommendations on your profile looks great to potential recruiters. The easiest way to receive recommendations is to give or to ask.

6. Change your individual URL

Ok, guys, this is cool. When you create a page, your actual “LinkedIn website” (or URL) probably will look like http://www.linkedin.com/in/rachelfo1928949198419235 or something excessive like that.

Did you know you can change this? Go to your profile and look under your profile picture. There you should find your LinkedIn URL. When you put your cursor on the URL, a wheel button should pop up on its right. Click on that and it will bring you to profile settings. From here, look on the right side of the page, where it says “Your public profile URL.” You will be able to edit your URL to be more simple.

I would suggest just using your first and last name if it is available. This little step shows that you are proficient and detailed-oriented. Speaking of details…

7. Be detailed

There are no hard, fast rules of LinkedIn, so I utilize it to be a longer version of my resume. I can be more specific about my accomplishments and goals.

8. Share your page

Now that you created your own personalized URL, share it everywhere you can! Add it to business cards, resumes, or even your Twitter and Facebook pages.

9. Post relevant articles and participate in discussions

Search for a few groups and companies of interest for you and participate! Make it a point to share an occasional and relevant article that you found on your own. It helps convey that you read and regularly invest in your own development (which you may not do, but you should!) It also encourages interactions and boosts your visibility. A win overall.

10. Keep it up-to-date

Once you complete your profile, make it a point to keep it updated, especially if you are job searching! Whenever I update my resume, I update my LinkedIn as well.

The only thing worse than not having a LinkedIn page is having a very unfinished or outdated one. Make it a point to check in even once every two weeks and add a few people, like a few articles, and make sure it looks well-maintained.

To conclude…

LinkedIn has been a major resource for my career and I know it will be for you too. To connect with me or use my profile as reference, visit my LinkedIn page here. Do you have other tips about how to best utilize LinkedIn? Comment below!

How to Conduct a Long-Distance Job Search

Getting a job is hard. Getting a job in a different city, state or country is even harder. But not impossible. Speaking as someone who found a job 1000 miles away, I’ve been through the feeling of stress, rejection and hopelessness. Here are worthwhile tips on how to conduct a long-distance job search.

Network, network, network.

Networking is absolutely essential for any job. If you’re just sending your resume out to random companies, you’re likely not even making it past their filter because of your out-of-town address. Networking with people you know or connecting with people within a company is the best way to ensure your resume is actually seen. LinkedIn is a great virtual resource to find who does the hiring at a specific company and provides a way to reach out to them.

Get involved in your current community.

Though you’re hoping to leave your community, getting involved right now allows you to build relationships and grow your network. It also gives you current involvement on your resume, which is especially good to show if you’re unemployed.

Be honest in your cover letter.

Definitely mention your desire to move in your cover letter and show that you have plans. Be specific and realistic. If you apply for this job now, how soon could you move if you got it? How would you interview? Are you willing to travel even for a basic interview? The easier you make it seem, the more you reassure the hiring manager.

Have references and tell them your goal.

Having plenty of references is always a good thing. Meet with them personally if you can, and tell them your goal. If your references receive a phone call about a job, they can further reassure a company that you are serious about moving and that you are organized and planning it.

Don’t rely entirely on internet job boards.

Regardless if it’s a long-distance job search or not, internet job boards get hundreds, if not thousands of people applying for the same job. It is some stiff competition and your chances aren’t looking great. Because they’re the obvious place to look for a new job, everyone and their mom is applying. Apply for some if they are your dream job, but otherwise skip them and turn to networking and LinkedIn.

Build a support system.

This will undoubtedly be a trialing time for you. Make sure you have someone to support you, whether it be a distraction, a shoulder to cry on, or someone to bust out the wine as needed. Shout out to my mom on this one!

Save vigorously.

Regardless of what happens, you will want to make sure you have enough money saved to fund that potential relocation. Any excuse to save is a good one, am I right?

Reach out on LinkedIn.

From personal experience, I have found LinkedIn to be invaluable in a job search. I actually received my first job through LinkedIn, which also was the job 1,000 miles away from home. LinkedIn allows you more freedom to reach out and message company leaders about job opportunities in a professional setting. Many people create a LinkedIn account but never use it. Don’t be one of those people! You’re missing out on such a modern, professional tool.

Be patient and relax.

While being patient is probably the most difficult advice to actually follow, it is also the most important. Finding a new job under any circumstance can take months or even years. You will likely face a lot of rejection, but if moving is important enough to you, you’ll find a way to make it happen.

Have you ever found a job in a different city, state, or country? Any other tips you would add or experiences to share? Comment below!

How to Make a Major Career Switch

Are you still clueless as to what you want to do for a career? Having regrets about your college major? Not sure where to start? Me neither.

College is one thing, but working a job rather than studying is a totally different dynamic. No matter how many internships or job shadows people do, I know so many people who graduate and are lost. Me included!

My background: I studied hospitality and tourism in school. I loved leaning about service, food, travel, accommodations. Everything. I thought I found my dream major. I interned at a major hotel and even interned at Disney World hotels. It was all awesome. Now I work in law. What?!

When I graduated, I got a job as a hotel manager in South Carolina. It was an exempt position, so basically I worked 80+ hours a week, I never had a weekend off, and would have to work 2nd or 3rd shift some nights. The job was a lot of fun, but it was not sustainable for long.

So I quit my job without another one lined up. I ended up moving and got a job doing marketing an human resources at a large law firm, and I love it. It is quite a switch, and you’re probably wondering how I did it. Here’s my advice:

1. Focus on what you want.

Finding a new job is hard, and finding one in a different field is even harder. Know what you want in a job and stick to it.

2. Know yourself as a brand.

Have you ever taken a marketing class? If you know how to market a product, you can market yourself. Know your strengths and capitalize, but be honest about your weaknesses and how you can spin them positively.

3. Be confident.

This can be easier said than done. I have applied to many jobs outside my field in the past and felt confident right until the interview.  The interviewer most likely will question your experience and credentials. This is where confidence is so necessary! If you don’t appear confident in yourself, why would an employer feel confident in hiring you? Practice confidence every day, and know that you’ve got this.

4. Find similarities between what you have done and what you want to do.

A big part of my degree was event planning. When I applied to my current job, experience event planning was something they were looking for. So I honed in on it during my interview, and set myself apart. Making the connection and capitalizing on it will likely have an employer looking to you as a specialist.

5. Have patience.

By making a career switch, you may not be the obvious candidate but with a lot of hard work and patience, it will pay off!


If you have personal or specific questions on making a career switch, I would love to connect with you. Feel free to email me at thelattebudget@gmail.com.

How to Quit Your Job Without Another Job Lined Up

Are you desperately wanting to quit your job, but you don’t have another one lined up? Maybe you’re working for a corrupt company and need out now. Or perhaps your job is requiring you to work so many hours that you simply don’t have time to search for another one?

I’ve been in your situation, and trust me, I know the emotions that you’re going through. Likely, you ask for advice from family and friends and you keep hearing the same response – “make sure you line up another job, first.”

I understand where family and friends are coming from. I mean, yes, ideally you would not quit your job without another one lined up. But I think there are some situations that it’s best to get out of quickly, even if you don’t have another job lined up.

For example, maybe you are working 100+ hours a week and don’t have time to job hunt. Maybe you are finding that your company is seriously corrupt or ethically immoral. Or maybe your career is not one you want to do at all, and you know you need to make a switch. You could even be making so little at your current job that your time would be spent better elsewhere.

Situations like this are unfortunate, but they do happen. It’s happened to me. They can cause you to fall into a serious depression. A job is necessary, but if your job is becoming a serious threat to your health, you need to find an alternative.

<h2″>Things to consider.

Before you quit your job without another lined up, you do need to consider some things.

  • What is the job market like in your area?
  • How easy would it be to find a new job on short notice?
  • Are you able or willing to relocate for a job?
  • Would you be willing to do temporary work in the meantime?
  • What will you do if you can’t find a fitting job right away?
  • Would you be willing to take a job just to pay the bills?
  • How much do you have in your emergency fund?

In the best scenario, you have an emergency fund for a situation like this. But if you’ve been focused on paying off debt, you might not have much set aside. Realistically, how long can you go without a job?

How much money do you need to earn each month to pay the bills?

Take a look at your budget. Where can you trim expenses? How much do you need to earn to pay the bills?

Who is your support system?

Do you have a significant other, friends, or family to support you emotionally through this time? (Side note – if you don’t have a support system, email me. I’ve been through this and am always available.)

Once you quit.

If you are able and ready to quit your job without another one lined up, congrats. You will definitely feel a sense of freedom. Here are additional tips on what to do next.

Take a break.

Chances are you are extremely burnt out and emotionally drained. Take a break to recover.

Network.

Know how to explain why you left.

While interviewing for jobs, you likely will be asked why you left your last company. Even if it was a terrible company, make sure your answer is unoffending. No one wants to hire you if you’re bashing your last employer.

Looking ahead.

Quitting a job without another lined up was scary, and I never want to feel like my future is so ambiguous ever again. I learned a lot from this and have organized my life so I am prepared if anything like that should ever happen again.

Build an emergency fund.

Ideally, you would have 3-6 months of living expenses in an emergency fund. After quitting my last job without one lined up, I built this up as soon as I could. Even though I have debt, my emergency fund was decidedly more important for my piece of mind.

Start a side hustle.

One reason I started this blog was so I could use it to earn money. If I had to quit my full-time job for any reason (though I love my job and shouldn’t ever have to), I know I could always pick up more freelance clients, sell something on my blog, work with advertisers, etc to earn more.

Diversifying your income streams really gives you piece of mind. Whether you blog, invest in real estate, clean houses, baby sit, deliver mail, or whatever it may be, do something on the side. It gives you so much control and freedom over your finances.

Be on the lookout for shady employers.

If you’re ever on the hunt for a new job, now you know a little more of what to look for in a company. Do your research and ask a lot of questions to ensure you’re never put in this situation again.

9 Ways to Stay Healthy While Sitting at a Desk All Day

While having an office job has it’s pros, chances are that you sit at a desk almost all day. Sitting for that many hours a day has many serious health consequences like:

  • Back and neck pain from improper posture.
  • Organ damage from a slower metabolism.
  • Weight gain because you burn less fat while sitting.
  • Damage to eye sight from staring at a computer all day.

When I started working my first office job after working several manual labor jobs, I thought I had it made. A cushy chair, an office, and regular hours were like a dream come true. While I am very thankful for my job, sitting at a desk all day has proved more difficult than I could have imagined.

After a year at my office job, I found I gained 10 pounds. That might not seem like much, but I am only 24. If I gained 10 pounds each year that I worked, I would really be sending myself down a path of destruction.

Along with weight gain, I have experienced some of the listed health consequences, like damage to eye sight, so I decided to do some research. Here are 9 tips to stay healthy while sitting at a desk all day.  

Ask for a standing desk.

Many companies are beginning to offer standing desks as an alternative. Standing burns more calories and allows proper blood flow to your body. While it might be unrealistic to stand all day long, see if it is an option you can do for a few hours throughout the day.

Practice good posture.

Admittedly, I have terrible posture. So bad that it actually is painful for me to practice good posture! Keep your feet on the floor, raise your chair so your eyes are slightly looking down at your computer, and sit up straight. Proper posture ensures good blood flow, prevents long-term back and neck issues, and allows you to strengthen your core.

Take a mini-break every half hour.

If you are able, set an alarm on your phone every half hour. Make it a point to take a 1 minute break. Stand up, stretch, and look away from the computer to combat computer vision syndrome.

Walk around every hour.

Along with a mini-break every half hour, take a short break every hour. Use the restroom, get more water, walk around a bit.

Take mental breaks, too.

Lunch breaks are suggested for a reason. Taking a mental break allows you to be more productive and it prevents burnout.

Drink plenty of water.

It’s easy to forget to drink up while you’re busy at work. Keep a water bottle at your desk at all times and make it a goal to drink at least half a gallon during work.

Avoid office junk food.

Somehow, it seems like there are always cookies or donuts sitting out to share. Why not set the tone for your office and bring in some fresh fruits and vegetables instead?

Schedule time outside of work to exercise.

Now that I blog and freelance outside of work, I really find that I sit a lot. So it has become increasingly important for me to schedule time to work out because some days, that’s all the movement I do. Exercising is so good for body and mind. It increases my focus and productivity as well. Even though it does take some time to fit-in exercise, I actually find that I accomplish way more in the days that I do exercise than the days where I skip a workout.

Bring your lunch to work.

As I frequently mention, bringing your lunch to work has so many benefits. It can save thousands of dollars each year, it is healthier, and it saves time. Sitting all day does slow down your metabolism, so it becomes difficult to burn off a meal out, which is typically higher in calories, fat, and sodium.

All in all

While you’re busy at work, it is easy to let your health slide. Your health is your biggest asset at any given point, so it is imperative that you take adequate care of yourself.