Don’t worry about a thing, ‘cause post-grad life is gonna be alright.
If I could write an entire post dedicated to Katie, I would. She is an amazing woman and I am so thankful to know her. But enough of the mushy stuff…
Here’s the reality about post-grad life: some parts of it really do suck. You’ll learn to balance a budget smaller than your freshman year C-Street meal plan; you’ll search for jobs and determine that while cover letters do absolutely nothing other than make you sound like a pretentious jerk they help get you an interview, you’ll realize that loans and interest rates are the eternal enemy, and you’ll ultimately lose friends that you honestly thought would always stay together. Aside from those things you’ll also be faced with the daunting question of what and who gives your life most meaning and purpose.
But you already expected that, right?
So often when people talk about the end of their college careers they speak as if it’s the end of a ‘golden age’ where humanity was able to thrive at its fullest ability. I don’t know how countless hours of work, sleepless nights and a caffeine addiction count as thriving, or how my lack of attendance in any of my senior year classes confirms functioning at my fullest ability. But then I wonder, what exactly caused me so much fear and anxiety last year before graduation?
The answer was freedom.
For the first time in my life I had been able to make my own path; I could go wherever I wanted, I could do whatever I wanted. Or so I thought. While my idealistic perspective on what the world would be like after graduation started to fade, and my loans and bills started to increase I realized I was a tad bit behind. With the amount of freedom that comes with graduation I bid you, choose wisely. The choices you make in the following months will determine the path and the goals you choose to seek.
When I realized taking a long-term vacation was out of the question and started looking for jobs there was a huge decision to make – seek jobs within the industry or take a position back at my old place of employment from high school. While I studied PR for four years, I knew from experience that this industry would eat me alive if I wasn’t ready; however, while the option for returning to a place of comfort was appealing, it was also complacent. And in a time where there were far too many college grads and not enough jobs, I turned down the position and got an internship.
That’s right, an internship.
After four years, two degrees and copious amounts of money spent, I landed myself a paid, part-time communications internship making coffee and taking orders. It was the best decision I could ever make. I helped with the company’s annual meeting, schedule appearances, blog for their clients and overall increased my experience and portfolio. I got to live in the moment without the full responsibility; I got to learn from the best. From there a few more offers came to the table and I went from intern to consultant overnight.
I’m now a marketing specialist given the opportunity to test the methods and theories I had so long discussed in those broken-down admin classrooms. I increased not only my pay but my knowledge of the field – and where you get paid, you tend to play.
And oh did I play – I went hard in the paint. I fell victim to the ‘having more, buying more’ syndrome where you think you can buy something simply because it’s payday only realizing after that you just spent the months’ phone bill money on shoes (but for the record they were really really pretty).
Mistakes will happen; you will screw up. But the point is to accept those moments that make you, you. Enjoy the freedom. While responsibility paid me a visit far too many times over the last year, I wouldn’t have it any other way. They are the moments that have deemed me successful. Read for fun again and engage in conversations about things you’re passionate about; blow your first paycheck. Cause a ruckus and push the limit. Dye your hair red. Be burnt out and rehab yourself back to feeling brand new. Celebrate graduating from college and finally receiving that piece of paper that acknowledges your accomplishments. Do all these things and more because at the end of the day, the work, the problems, the questions, the challenges – they’ll all still be right where you left them. They’re not going anywhere. You have your entire life ahead of you – so go ahead, live a little.
Like the last guest post, I’ve been saving this one for some time now. Since I am newly graduated, there won’t be any back-to-school posts this year like there have been in years past, but that doesn’t mean we can’t talk about school ever. My dear friend RaeLani wrote me up a post that embodies a lot of the feelings we tend to have after graduating and even before graduation happens. This post is dedicated to my lovely seniors coming into their last year at Seattle University. I’d like to thank RaeLani for being so candid with her post. She is one incredible woman and someone that I have always looked up to for her wisdom and kindness, but more importantly, she is simply a joy to be around.