Prepare for those unexpected changes in direction

This week I felt inspired to talk about those unexpected changes in direction.

It is the unexpected that makes us most nervous in life. So having some awareness for them can be hopeful to try and reduce that anxiety.

Career Break

Whatever your reason for stopping to take time out of your career here are my three top tips:

1. Keep up your NI record going when you take time off, try to maintain your saving for your financial future, and make a provision for this.

2. Gift your annual personal tax allowance to your spouse if they are earning and you are not, this can save them tax if you aren’t using it for a period of time.

Stock market downturn

We are always scared of a stock market downturn. However, if you are growing your money and accumulating wealth, in the lead-up to retirement, for example, a stock market downturn can be an opportunity to invest and you have time to ride out the fall in the markets.

If you are taking an income from your investments then a stock market downturn can impact the value of your investments if you keep the level of income you take the same. If you are taking a variable income then the income level you receive may drop. Review your plan and make changes if necessary to make sure your pot will last your lifetime.


It is never nice to experience redundancy, I know, I have experienced this during my career.

But it is a good time to take stock and look at where you are. The first £30,000 of your redundancy is paid tax-free, after that, it is paid at your marginal rate of tax.

Did you know that you can ask your employer for a redundancy sacrifice so that any amount you don’t need, outside of the tax-free amount, can be paid into your pension? It’s worth working out what you need and what are the best options for you. Then discuss this with your employer before you leave.


Being self-employed has its challenges when planning how much to save when your income can be variable and not fixed.

More women are becoming self-employed than ever before. However, the average woman will earn just £11,800 compared with nearly £18,000 as a man.

Why is this? Is it your mindset and the fees you charge for your service? Is it because compared to men, women do more of the childcare and work fewer hours on their business?

My top tips for the self-employed

  • Work on your mindset and charge what you are worth

  • Map out your income expectations

  • Understand what your expenses within your business are

  • Save up for your tax bill

  • Invest in what you need to grow and develop your business

  • Plan your pension and savings, make a monthly provision or an annual payment - just as you would the income you need to live on

How cashflow forecasting can help prepare you for life's unexpected changes

Cashflow forecasting brings financial position to life visually. It takes your current income, expenditure, savings, and investments and projects them in the future utilizing your expected financial plans and assumptions about inflation and growth rates.

This sophisticated technology enables you to understand how your money will last throughout your lifetime and enables you to map out those unexpected events so that you can better equip yourself to deal with life's little bumps by knowing whether you have any financial shortfalls in your current plan.

As a Chartered Financial Planner I have utilised cashflow planning with my clients to help them change careers, retire early, spend more money and proactively build up their wealth. It provides you with the clarity you need to make important financial decisions.

If you would like to bring your financial plans to life send me an email,, and let's arrange a Discovery Call to talk through your bespoke financial plans.

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