What Should You Do After College & Things to Remember Post-College
Post-college is definitely a transitional time of your life. You were used to going to class, having summer break and holiday breaks, doing homework—and all of sudden you’re not there anymore. People are getting married, people having kids, people are just all over the place.
Post-college can be a time when you can feel alone. But know that you’re not. Because more people share your feelings and experiences than you think.
With that said, I’m 6 years post-college. I told myself I was gonna take a year break before going back to grad school. Long and behold, I still don’t know what I would go back to school for—so here I am. (Side note: I LOVE LOVE school. Reading, writing, research, and homework is not my problem. My problem is picking a topic I’m willing to invest thousands of dollars into that will be worth getting a Masters degree).
All that to say, life may run a little different than you think or you’re used to. Whatever your feeling or going through is normal—it’s all part of this transitional period.
THINGS YOU CAN DO POST-COLLEGE:
Find a job—any job
You just graduated college, you’re looking for jobs but you don’t have experience but you need experience—and no one seems to be hiring but everyone tells you that everyone is hiring. All that said, if you have to, find a temporary part-time job. It can be at a a store, coffee shop, bank, fitness center, etc. This part-time job won’t pay well, but it’ll give you some form of income for the time being. Plus, it’s part-time which gives you the flexibility to continue looking for a full-time job.
This doesn’t mean you’re a failure, and it doesn’t make you a failure. It’s simply doing something with your time, while you wait to hear back from the full-time jobs you want. Plus, you never know—working at part-time jobs can teach you more about yourself and help you hone your skills than you think.
Go on an adventure
A lot of parents probably don’t want their child running off for the next 3-6 months on an adventure post-college—but I will say, if you can, you should. Your student loans don’t kick in until 6 months post-graduation. That technically gives you 6 months to do something. I know a classmate who went on a hitchhiking trip, another one went backpacking. I’m not suggesting these activities, but you can definitely travel.
I went to Florida for 3 months after graduation.
Going somewhere will help you to enjoy your time before you hit the “real-world” running. It can also help you define what kind of job you actually want.
Start a Side Hustle
Always wanted to start that blog? Or YouTube channel? Or photography business? Or freelance? Or Etsy shop? Or design shop? or whatever else? Do that NOW! Yeah, you may have to use a little bit of money to initially start, but this will be a way to keen into what you actually want to do in your future. Plus, it’ll keep you busy. And you never know—your side hustle may become your main hustle.
Even after you get a job, you can still work on your side hustle.
THINGS TO REMEMBEr:
There’s no roadmap
Post-college is a very transitional time for everyone. People are getting married, people having kids, people moving, people staying, people going, people starting businesses, people going back to school, people are just all over the place.
And it appears that way because for the past 20 years of your life, your next thing was predetermined. For example, after fifth grade is sixth grade—after freshman year is sophomore year. But post-college, there is no more roadmap.
Don’t compare your post-college life to someone else’s
Seriously, try not to compare your post-college life with someone else’s. I know you will, because I catch myself doing that too. But let it inspire you instead of put you down. I wrote a post about comparison here.
Everyone’s life is different now. And that’s okay.
Don’t be afraid to try new things
You may have found your dream job or you may have no clue what your dream job is, regardless of where you stand—don’t be afraid to try new things. It keeps the mundane life exciting.
Go and try out that new restaurant you’ve been wanting to try out, or maybe take a road trip to somewhere you’ve always wanted to go. Maybe even pick up a new hobby!
Keep educating yourself
Keep learning. And not just learn about your job or your field, but challenge yourself to learn more about different lifestyles, different perspectives, different parts of the world. The best thing about learning post-college—no one is telling you what you should learn or should know, you have full control of choosing what you want to learn! Stay curious and keep learning.
Talk to People
As I get older I realize that there are people who wants to see you succeed and who wants to help you. Not everyone is out to get you or out to see you fail. Talk to people and let them know what you’re interested in, what you’re thinking, what you want to try out. More likely than not, they’ll come back with job options or people you should connect with.
Of course, don’t go telling everyone you meet everything—be mindful and careful. But to the people who supports you, do let them know.
You are not a failure
If you can’t find a job in your field or you have to move back in with your parents—none of that means you’re a failure. It’s simply just a season of your life, it’s part of your story, it’s not who you are and it doesn’t determine your worth or your future success. Don’t let those things hinder you. Let them inspire and motivate you.
Alright friends, those are a few of the things you can do and things to remember as a college graduate. You are now an adult, contributing your time to the rest of the world. For some of you the transition is fine, and for others it takes more intentionality and thought—neither one is better than the other.
Take your time. Give yourself grace. Stay grateful. I also wrote another post about 10 things recent grads should know here. Go read it.
What are some advice you have or were given as a college graduate? Share below!
~ Sincerely, Mainou
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