Graduating college is one of the biggest feats that any person can achieve. But what comes after college is not always so definite or clear. There are the lucky few who know what the next step in their life will be even before the graduation ceremony, but for the most of college graduates the future is unknown.
The unknown is not a bad thing, if you are graduating soon and still don’t know what your next step is, don’t stress out. You are in good company. Most college graduates don’t know what’s going to happen after graduation. You will find your way eventually. Take this opportune time and figure out exactly what it is you want out of life. Twenty-something’s have always struggled with identity exploration, instability, self-focus, and feeling in-between so all those emotions you are feeling are normal.
Everyone says that graduating college makes you a real adult, but being adult really just means doing and deciding things on your own. Being your own person, supporting yourself, and doing what you want to do makes you an adult. So if finding a job is the #1 thing you want, then go for it! Spend some time daily searching and applying for jobs that you believe would be good for you. Job-hunting can be rough so don’t let it overly stress you.
- Take it one day at a time
- Spend a couple hours searching for jobs on indeed.com, monster.com, craigslist, or other job search browsers
- Save jobs you find interesting
- Start the application process and set time apart for writing those cover letters
- Don’t over think or over stress—you will do better by doing so
Don’t feel discouraged if you don’t hear back right away, the application and interview process takes time. If you don’t find something soon know that you have your whole life ahead of you and you don’t need to figure it all out now. However, one of the “adult” tasks that you do have to tend to is supporting yourself or figuring out how you are going to do that. Possibly your parents are still willing to help some, but remember, they shouldn’t be your sole support because that is not being an adult. Being an adult does mean that you need to take some responsibility. So, if you don’t find the “perfect” job yet, you can keep searching, but just remember that you may need to take a lesser option to get the experience you need or to be able to support yourself at this time. The nice part of this time of your life is that you don’t have anyone to care for than yourself, so it’s up to you to decide what you want for yourself. Just remember that it is your responsibility to figure out how you are going to do it. There are many options and paths, you just have to choose what will work for you.
One of those options may be supporting yourself with a job that is not as mainstream. Maybe you want to take some time and travel! Finding a “real” job right after graduation is not a total must. There are so many things you can do instead:
- Be an adventure guide or tour guide
- Become a nanny
- Become a research assistant
- Do a gap year program
- Find a fun internship
- Teach English abroad
There are so many possibilities and opportunities for you when school comes to a final close. Graduating and becoming an “adult” is all up to you, it’s your decision to go straight into the work force or to go live an alternative life doing something a little different than the norm. Becoming an adult can have it’s ups and downs – as having the power and control over your life can have its pros and cons; however; your future is in your own hands. Take control of your life and decide for yourself what you want to do after graduation.
The world is your oyster and now as an adult it’s your job to find that beautiful pearl.