Adjusting to life after college can be tough. That’s why I wrote this blog post on seven things I wish I knew about post-college life.
Life after college is scary. Graduating from college and entering the working-world is one of the scariest transitions we encounter (especially if you have the overachiever and/or people-pleaser mindset).
It’s the first time in our lives where we don’t have our next step picked out for us — before graduating, our next step was to make it to the next grade. But after graduating from college, we need to decide what that next step is. And that can be terrifying.
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For me, this transition was paralyzing — the overachiever in me didn’t want to take the wrong step and the people-pleaser in me wanted others to be happy with whatever decision I made. That’s why I decided the write this blog post. I hope to ease your worries about what the post-college journey entails and prevent you from having analysis paralysis (thinking about a situation too much that it’s hard to make a decision).
Here are seven things I wish I knew about life after college.
1.The importance of self-care in the job-hunting process
If you’re anything like fresh-out-college-me, your main focus will be finding a job. So the job hunting process is the perfect place to practice implementing self-care. This way, you can take what you practice and bring it with you to your career.
2.The importance of self-knowledge
Building off of the last point, self-care is important. But how can you care for yourself if you don’t know what is best for you?
In order to properly care for yourself, you need to know what you need.
3.The purpose of informational interviews
I thought that informational interviews were an easy way to get my foot in the door and that if I got my foot in the door at enough places, one of them would eventually lead to a job. But there’ a problem with this approach…
It’s an inauthentic way to build your network. When you’re only focused on what you will get out of a relationship, it can be hard to create a genuine relationship.
The purpose of informational interviews is to learn from a variety of people who work in the industry, company, or position you are hoping to pursue. This way, you can create your own career roadmap and apply to jobs with strategy.
Pro tip: Informational interviews are especially helpful early on in your job hunt. Download the free productive job-hunting cheat sheet so you always know what step to take next in your job hunt.
4.Trust your gut
There will be times in your post-college journey where you are at a fork in the road and It’ll seem different from the other fork-in-the-road situations you’ve faced. Logical reasons go one way while your gut feelings go a different way. From my experience, it’s best to trust your gut and instincts.
5.Just because I’m different doesn’t mean I’m wrong
I grew up thinking that different equals wrong. In a ballet class, I was taught to self-correct— look at what I am doing, compare it to what the teacher is doing, then fix myself so I look like the teacher. Although this made sense in a ballet class (first position is first position and that’s that), it doesn’t always apply to life.
There will be points in your life where societal expectations aren’t aligned with your beliefs. And that’s okay. It doesn’t always mean that you are wrong.
6.WHY you shouldn’t compare yourself to how others portray themselves on social media
Here on Post College Journey, I talk a lot about how the first year of post-college life can feel lonely. The main reason I felt this way is that I saw a lot of people who were LOVING being out of school and being on the 9-5 grind. Whereas I couldn’t even manage to land paid internships.
Now that I look back on this, I realize that it makes sense that I would only see positive “life update” (humble brag) posts. Everyone who was in a similar boat as I was, also went silent on social media because they felt like failures and ashamed.
7.Post-college depression is a real thing
Building off the last point, I wish I knew that feeling depressed is normal. People are more susceptible to depression during major life changes and the transition from college to adult-life is a MAJOR transition. So if you end up feeling down, know that that’s okay and you’re not alone.
What does all this mean for life after college for you?
I hope that you can learn from the mistakes I’ve made or that some of what is in this blog post resonates with you. Like I said at the beginning of this blog post, the post-college journey is terrifying. But it doesn’t mean you have to go it alone!
The purpose of this blog is to help ease the transition into adulthood and get you started with your marketing career. Check out the rest of the blog for more resources on life after college and be sure to download your free copy of the Productive Job-Hunting Cheat Sheet.