GET STARTED - January 2021

FIRST of all, let us take this moment to welcome you back to GET STARTED and to wish you all a Happy New Year! We hope you all have a wonderful 2021 (and it is a million times better than the year which must not be named) and that things start to improve for us all very soon.

Our theme this month is VISION so join us as we look to the year ahead, so that you can GET STARTED!

Before we do that though, we just wanted to share some new and exciting things you could try this lockdown as well as signpost you to any relevant advice and support out there at the moment.

Learn a new language

British Sign Language

Did you know that there are an estimated 145,000 users of British Sign Language (BSL) here in the UK including 20,000 children.

For many of them BSL is their only way of communicating with the rest of the world, outside of reading and writing.

British-sign are offering an online, introductory course for British Sign Language on a ‘pay what you feel’ fee in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

They list guide prices from as little as £3, however you can pay as little or as much as you want. The usual cost for this course is £25.

Definitely one worth investigating!


I’ve no doubt you’ve all heard of Duolingo by now, but if you are on the look out to learn a new language it is well worth a shot.

They offer courses on 38 different languages, some of which you’ve definitely heard of such as Spanish, German and Mandarin Chinese but also some other more … obscure languages such as High Valyrian and Klingon (and yes, I mean the languages from Game of Thrones and Star Trek).

Regular old Duolingo is free to use, with Duolingo Plus costing a rather pricey £12.99 a month. You can however get a two week free trial of Plus, which is a great way to get a base understanding of your new language!

Just make sure you remember to cancel it before you get charged.


It is important that during this time we all play our part and follow the current lockdown rules which are regularly updated by the BBC here.

Reasons to leave home include:

  • Work or volunteering where it is "unreasonable" to work from home. This includes work in someone else's home, such as that carried out by social workers, nannies, cleaners and tradespeople
  • Education, training, childcare and medical appointments and emergencies
  • Exercise outdoors (limited to once a day). This includes meeting one other person from another household in an open public space to exercise
  • Shopping for essentials such as food and medicine
  • Communal religious worship
  • Meeting your support or childcare bubble. Children can also move between separated parents Activities related to moving house
  • To flee the threat of harm or violence.*

REMEMBER! The last point there is really important. If you are in at risk of harm or violence then you are allowed to leave to get away from the danger.


Below are a list of support services that you can contact should you need them.

  • Talking Therapies - This will take you to the NHS directory of Talking Therapies, you are able to self-refer once you have identified your local service.
  • Samaritans - Provides a listening service for those at risk of suicide, you can also call direct on 116 123 for free
  • Campaign Against living Miserably CALM - Provides listening services, information and support for men at risk of suicide, including a web chat
  • Kooth - Counsellors available until 10pm every day. Free, safe and anonymous online counselling for young people. Check whether this is offered in your area
  • Cruse – Cruse offer bereavement and counselling for anyone who is going through loss. You can contact them via their website or by calling 0808 808 1677.


“A vision is not just a picture of what could be; it is an appeal to our better selves, a call to become something more.” – Rosabeth Moss Kanter


‘Vision’ is one of the fifteen EntreComp competencies and can be characterised as ‘Imagining the future, creating a vision to turn ideas into action and visualising future scenarios to help guide effort and action.’ 

So, what better time to put this into place than at the beginning of a brand-new year?

Write down your goals

Writing down your goals makes you more likely to achieve them – sounds cliché I know, but it’s true! And the more vividly you write/draw them the more likely you are to achieve them.

So grab some pen and paper this January and get to writing three things you’d like to achieve by the years end, and go into some detail!

Writing ‘find a job’ probably isn’t going to cut it. But – going into some detail like:

‘I want to have a full-time stable job by July this year, and to get there I’m going to commit to applying to X jobs a month, evaluate my CV and connect with X companies I’d love to work with on LinkedIn every month.’

Gives you much more to go on, you could even use SMART to help set your goals.

Make sure you can see them

Once you have written these down the next step is to make sure you can see them, and they don’t become part of that pile of receipts and handwritten notes in the bottom of your sock drawer (or is that just a me thing?)

✅ On the fridge 

✅ Post-It notes in places you always look 

✅ Bedroom wall 

✅ Phone or computer screensaver 

You could even share them with close friends and family and ask them to keep the pressure on – it will annoy the hell out of you, but you’ll do it (in my case, just to get them off my back and spite them!)

Create a vision board

One sure fire way of making sure you see it every day is to create a vision board (and again, yes they really work!)

A vision board is where you can be creative (another of the EntreComp competencies) and visualise not only your goals and aspirations but remind yourself of other things – like your best pals you can rely on during the hard times, the cinema ticket from that first date you don’t want to forget just yet or a picture of you and your Gran.

Think things that really inspire you to be your best.

P.S. you don’t need to just use your vision board to visualise your career aspirations – think about other goals you may have in terms of your home and personal life, relationship goals, travel and health.

And don’t forget to have some fun with it! Be CREATIVE!

Stick to it.

This is probably the most important part – stick to it.

It is easier said than done but set aside some time every week where you are going to sit down and work away at your targets. Treat it like a small part-time job – it is the same time every week and it takes precedence over everything else.

Maybe you could set up a small mini office in the corner of your room, or you could agree a time you can hijack the kitchen table but sit down and spend your agreed time working away at those aspirations.

Make them reality.

Thank you for joining us this month and make sure to return next month for our hand-picked opportunities chosen especially for you! Remember, that if these opportunities aren't right for you, they may be relevant to a friend or family member so give them a nudge and send them our way.

If you'd like to join our Newsletter so that you can get a monthly reminder direct to your inbox the first Saturday of every month please sign up here.

Finally, if you're a business or organisation and would like us to shout out about your opportunities you can contact us here.

stay safe and speak soon. - simon

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