10 WAYS TO SPEND YOUR GAP YEAR

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  1. Take time to get things you’ve been meaning to do done. This can be short term as well as long term. Get all the errands and miscellaneous jobs that you’ve been putting off done, and then move onto more long term projects you haven’t been able to do during education such as driving lessons, or, in my case, a toe operation (lovely, I know).
  2. Travel. This is probably the most popular way to spend a gap year and the way I hope to spend some of mine. You’ll never have such little responsibility as you do during a gap year, so take advantage of your young, bill free life and book a bucket list trip.
  3. Volunteer. Theres so many gap year volunteer programmes in far flung destinations; you could work with elephants in Thailand, turtles in Bali or volunteer in your local area if you’re more of a home bird. Volunteer work in your chosen field would be a bonus, but volunteer work of any kind will always look good on your CV.
  4. Gain a new skill/qualification. Whether it be skiing, scuba diving or anything in-between, a gap year gives you a fantastic opportunity to complete a course you may not get the chance to do during your day to day life.
  5. Start a new project/ challenge. You could set up a blog, start a Youtube channel or write a book; anything that you can work on for an extended period of time and really give time and energy to. This would work even better if the progress was measurable e.g. Setting up a blog from scratch and reaching X amount of page views by the end of the year, so you have something to constantly work towards and look back on.
  6. Work (retail/customer service). A gap year is a great opportunity to build up your savings and get some work experience, meaning you’ll be financially prepared for whatever opportunities come your way, whether that be university or relocating for a job, and prepared to enter the world of work when the opportunity arises to pursue your chosen career.
  7. Work (your chosen field). Taking a local job in retail or customer service can be a great way to build up savings, but a whole year out means you could pursue work experience that may be unpaid and/or far away but relates to your future career goal. If the work is unpaid or you have to travel, you could consider getting a retail job first and using your savings to support yourself whilst on work experience in your chosen field.
  8. Explore a completely different field. You could use your year to try out something completely different to the subjects you’ve been studying but have always wanted to have a go at. For example, I want to study film at university but I’m looking into dolphin training programmes for my gap year as its something I’ve always wanted to do but didn’t study for at sixth form. You never know, exploring a different field might completely change your mind about your future career!
  9. Reinvent yourself. I think we’ve all been through phases where we want to get a whole new wardrobe, redecorate our whole house, revamp our social medias and take up a new hobby for a completely fresh start. Since you have a whole year, you can really take time to figure out who you are/who you want to be/how to want to present yourself and act on those Pinterest goals boards you’ve been making.
  10. Let fate decide. Be open to new opportunities and take ones you wouldn’t usually; they might lead you somewhere unexpected and make your gap year the best year of your life.

 

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