Get writing and keep updating your CV

A notepad

Make the most of your time. Get a job by impressing employers with your swanky new CV!

Exams are over! For the next few weeks or so you can sit around, watch TV, play video games, sleep in until noon...but where will that get you? OK, so you'll be able to return to school or college in the autumn and boast to your friends that you completed every level of the latest computer game in record time, but chances are they'll be more impressed by the girl who did work experience on the local paper, or the guy who temped at the big Ad Agency. And future employers will be impressed too.

    "If you don't feel like training, you have to remember that your rivals around the world are working hard and you don't want to give them an advantage! If you don't train, then the guilt trip after is very bad. I always feel I should have gone!" David Davies, 1500m Freestyle swimmer

Even out of season, sporting greats who want to stay great will be training. They've got goals in mind, and whether the next challenge is a few months or years ahead, they're working towards them. And that's what you could be doing too. The summer holidays will fly by whatever you decide to do with your time, so use it wisely!

    "You have to be completely sure of where you're heading and what your goal is. I knew at sixteen I wanted to do what I do and I stuck to that rigidly. You have to be wholeheartedly committed and be ready to take some chances. Put yourself on the line 100% and be prepared to lose everything." Matt Roberts, Personal Trainer to the stars

OK, so not everyone is fortunate enough to know what they want to do with their life at 16-years-old, or even 18, 21, 25, 30... but by setting challenges and gaining experience along the way, you are already achieving.

    "Talent is important, desire is important, commitment is important but it's perseverance that's the key. It's persevering for long enough to achieve your potential. You're not going to be great at 15 or 16, but you might be at 25 or 26, if you're prepared to persevere and overcome hurdles." Lynn Davies, President of UK Athletics and Olympic gold medal winner

Your first job might not be a barrel of laughs or well paid (if paid at all), but everyone has to start somewhere. You can still learn from it, even if it's just that you don't want to work in that field again! The chances are even the most mundane jobs will give you valuable experience and knowledge, and help you develop and demonstrate communication and organisational skills, for example, which future employers will find desirable. The experience will give you a better idea of what you'd like the next role to be and put you ahead of the game when applying for it.

    "Be prepared to start at the bottom and work up. I began writing for my local paper and a magazine while I was still at school. After I left university, my first job was as an editorial assistant on a sports magazine which required me to do everything from filing to buying the editor's sandwiches and making tea. Within six months I was writing regularly in the weekly publication." Peta Bee, Sports Journalist

Job hunting in itself can be hard work, so don't be disheartened if you don't get the first position you apply for - keep at it, and eventually the effort will pay off.

    "I'm delighted to have won Gold and Silver medals at the Championships (World Short Course Championships, Indianapolis, October 2004) - proof of all the hard work and hard training I've put in. I did have a knock-back in August not going to the Olympic Games, but I reset my goals and believed I could do it. I had put a lot of solid work in and the disappointment was very hard. I'm really chuffed with the result. You can't do more than win!" Mark Foster, 50m Freestyle Gold and 50m Butterfly Silver

The first step down the job route is to create or update your CV, so we've trawled the web to find some sites with handy pointers and suggestions for doing so. You might be surprised at the abundance of skills and experience you have already accumulated through school, hobbies, clubs, sports etc. The advice given on these sites will help you select the appropriate and relevant items to include on your CV, according to the role you're after. So whether it's paid or unpaid work experience or voluntary work, get out there, with your CV in hand, and see what you can achieve. And at the end of a hard day or week, you'll know that you deserve to put your feet up and relax.


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