College is a period of learning, both in and outside of the classroom. You are given the tools to succeed in your field while learning how to succeed. Its expected that when you finish, you will have it all figured out… but that’s often not the case. After graduating, I’ve been bombarded with questions like, “What’s next?” and “Hows the job search going.?” It’s almost taboo to say, “I don’t know” when asked these questions. Everyone expects me to have it all figured out, when the reality is, I don’t. While I do know the direction I want to head in, the path isn’t very clear. There are, however, five things that I have learned over these past couple of months.
- Patience is everything
I don’t know about you, but I like to have my shit together. Part of adulting, is realizing that it may not always be together. Good things come to those who wait, but good things come faster to those who hustle. Hard work and perseverance are your best friends, especially in times of transition. Whether its applying for a job or trying to get noticed by higher- ups in your office, be patient, if you keep at it you will reach your goals.
- Your Mental Health Matters
This lesson is so important, and something that I have to constantly remind myself of. Treat your mental health the same as you do your physical health. Everyday won’t be sunshine and rainbows but never compromise your peace over something or someone.
- Use Your Network
You know that saying, “It’s not what you know, it’s who you know?” While I do believe both are important, it’s the “who” that can often help you get your foot in the door. Your network is so important. Talk to your friends, your family, your old teachers and mentors… literally everyone. A simple connection or cosign can go a long way and someone you know can be link to your future.
- Never Stop Learning
While this sound like a given, it is so important. After your network helps connect you to your dreams, it’s up to you to perform. Think about where you want to be, and what skills you need to get there. The Internet is your friend, there are thousands of free resources available for you to learn a new skill and stay up to date on industry news. If you love fashion, read WWD. If you’re into finance, read the Wall Street Journal. The more you know, the more of an asset you are.
- Don’t Be Afraid to Fail
This lesson has been the biggest for me. It is so easy, especially with social media, to compare your success (or lack of success) with others. But always remember, you are exactly where you need to be right now. And, if you get weary always refer back to to number one.
I know that I’ve only been out of school for a few months, and I still have a lifetime of lessons to go, but I did want to share what I’ve learned so far. What advice can you share?