Working In the Trades
When considering working in the trades, there are a few important questions to ask.
Firstly, you should find out how much the job pays. Thinking this may make it may feel that you are only looking to make money, but the reality is that, at some point in your life, your parents will not be there to pay the bills for you and you will have to step up to the plate and pay for your lifestyle. Whether you are a “stick-to-basics” kind of person or a “lavish lifestyle” kind of person, you will need to pay for your life and so you will need to make enough money to feel comfortable.
There is a realistic way to evaluate how much money will really be enough for you. I suggest creating a budget for yourself to identify exactly how much money you spend on the various aspects of your life. You could try tabulating a spreadsheet and counting up all the different aspects of your life that cost money, including the major categories like rent, food, clothing, hygiene products (like shampoo, toothpaste, etc.), entertainment (movies, cable TV connection), school tuition and so on. Once you’ve identified how much money you expend each month, you can multiply that by twelve to find out how much you need per year. This should give you a good idea of how much you NEED to make per year, and from there you can evaluate what you WANT to make per year. Factor in long-term goals, like buying a car or a house.
Secondly, you will want to evaluate what type of work interests you. Do you like physical work like what is demanded in plumbing and carpentry, or do you prefer to work in an area more focused on being indoors (like a job peripherally related to the trades, such as being a sales manager or receptionist)? Knowing what the requirements are for the career you are looking at doing for the rest of your life is essential, because you will spend so much of your time doing this work; It is important to love it.
Thirdly, it is important to consider what resources are available to you to help you get yourself the job you want. Sometimes a job may seem great in your mind, but the potential for landing a job in that field can be difficult. A current example of this conundrum is teaching, where there are very few teaching positions available that are full time and permanent. Looking into volunteer, internship and permanent positions available in your is great way to do some research and prepare yourself for working in your chosen field.
Thinking about the above three factors should help you to identify what career in the trades is best suited for you. Good luck!