It feels as though you spend your whole life waiting to graduate and when you get there, there’s a whole lot you will learn that no one has ever told you. Perhaps the most learning happens once you’ve left college! Here are some of the things that we wish we’d been told about life post-graduation.
Being a ‘proper adult’ isn’t so bad
Sure, bills and taxes aren’t a lot of fun, but there is also a lot of great things about no longer being a student. You can finally pursue the career you’ve been working toward for the past few years, and sure it will be hard, but it will be worth it. As an adult you can make your own decisions, whether that’s where to live, or just to have ice cream for dinner – you are your own person. Don’t believe anyone who tells you that the best days of your life have already happened; it’s only just begun!
It’s not always fair
This is a tough one. There will be some people in your graduating class who seem to land on their feet in the most annoying way, especially when you know that they haven’t really worked for it. Perhaps they have wealthy parents, or they just get lucky. Either way, try not to compare yourself to them and focus on you.
Your college degree might not be all that relevant to your career
We know, this isn’t what you want to hear right now, but bear with us. The skills you learn in any degree are useful, but you might find yourself falling into a whole other industry once you finish school. Remember that that is absolutely fine. You’ll always end up where you are supposed to be. Even if you’ve spent the last three years studying drama and end up working in a sales office, everything happens for a reason.
The paperwork isn’t over
Sure, you don’t have to write essays about the Civil War anymore, but the paperwork is still very important. There is so much to keep on top of, from taxes to healthcare, 401K enrollment to contracts and it’s all incredibly important so try not just to bury your head in the sand – get it sorted as soon as you can!
You can still take risks
You might not be a college student anymore, but that doesn’t mean your life has to be boring. You don’t need to be in a rush to settle down and have children as soon as the ink dries on your diploma. If there are things you want to do, like travel, move across the country or start your own business, now is a great time to do it!
Moving home isn’t a failure
It might not be the way you wanted to start your post-college life, but sometimes there is no option but to move home for a little while. Make sure you don’t regress back into a teenager, try to think of yourself more as a housemate. Pull your weight around the house, pay rent and set yourself a deadline for when you want to move out.
The formal part of your education is over, but you should never stop learning. Keep developing your current skills and learning new ones to keep ahead in the job market, as well as keeping your brain sharp! Whether you take online courses, or just read a lot, make soaking up knowledge a part of your life.
Be a good guy
Be humble in the workplace and treat everyone with respect. You don’t have to take any nonsense, but don’t give any either. You’ll get much further in life by being a good person. This is definitely something that you won’t necessarily learn at college, but will help you in a big way in the long run.
Being out of college can be scary, but it is also the start of the next stage in your life. Be prepared to learn and grow as much as you did when you were a student.