If you've already finished school and working in your career of choice, then you probably don't need a back-up plan. Well, Always know other places to loo in the same line of work, but for those of us whose career choices still aren't set in stone, we need a back-up plan.
My plan is to go to an exclusive fashion design school in Vancouver, then work in retail until I can get the money to open my own shop. But in such an unreliable and unpredictable market, I have no idea how successful this shop will be. That's why I take comfort in knowing that I have several small back-up plans.
Think of other hobbies, skills, or education you have that could provide possible income. I'm currently taking a small business accounting program until I go to my fashion school. This in part will help me when I open my own shop, but I could also use it for a small side income doing basic accounting work.
On top of my schooling, I love cake decorating. I jumped into last year for Kyle's birthday with absolutely no skills other than spreading icing and sprinkles on cupcakes, and did a very impressive job of making a playboy logo fondant cake. Fondant is quite difficult, and there's a lot more to learn, and a lot of tools required to learn good cake decorating. Rather than go and spend a bunch of money on baking and decorating supplies for something that's purely a hobby at the moment, I ask for stuff for christmas. With some practice I don't see why it couldn't become an easy and enjoyable side income.
I don't like not being sure of plans I make, so it makes me feel better and more secure knowing that in case things don't go as planned, I have options prepared.