Since the onset of COVID-19, more than 2.3 million women have left the labor force, compared to 1.8 million men. (Source)
So, for a lot of women who are thinking about going back to work, they might feel like they’re not only behind when it comes to their career, but also with their retirement savings. Remember: Time matters in the investment world, and you owe it to yourself to get started ASAP.
How to Get Back on Track
Once you have evaluated your emergency fund and you’ve established a couple of financial goals for the next six months to one year, then it’s time to take the next step (this is also where a financial planner can help).
- Sign up for the payroll deduction Retirement Savings Plan with your employer if you are eligible.
- Open a ROTH IRA or Traditional IRA for yourself at your local bank, credit union or with your financial planner.
Here are some other tips from MoneyGeek.com when it comes to getting back out there:
Create a supportive professional network
Women who have a circle of supportive female friends to confide in are 2.5 times more likely to become high performers at work. Strong professional networks can help women attain higher positions of leadership and better pay, according to the Harvard Business Review.
Take note of your wins
Keep a reflection log of your accomplishments and achievements. Making time to reflect on successes you have in the workplace can go a long way to furthering your professional goals and boosting your confidence in the long term.
Set holistic goals
Women who set and achieve personal goals are more likely to feel confident in achieving their professional aspirations. Set aside time to focus on your well-being, even if making time for self-care doesn’t always seem like it will help you attain a better salary or higher position.
Be honest about your challenges
Everyone faces challenges in their personal and professional lives. Showing weakness or sharing your difficulties with someone else can lead to unexpected support from others and help you establish long lasting relationships.
The most important thing is to set time aside for yourself to sit down and assess your finances. Whether you are feeling pessimistic, hopeful, somewhere in between, it’s important to acknowledge how you’re feeling.
It’s also important to seek help if you need it. Of course I would advise contacting a financial professional, but if you’re not ready to do this, talking to a close friend about your concerns can help, too. With both of these options, it’s important to be honest; it is all too easy to put your head in the sand and hide from the real financial issues, which can end up costing you much more in the long run.
Thinking about going back to work? Here are some local organizations you can look into: