4 Tips for Graduates (or anyone, really)

4 Tips for Gradutes | Sense of Sunny

After spending years mulling over a topic, hours studying for final examinations, and days preparing for THE day, it can be a struggle to decide what to do next as you transition in to the working world. While there are thousands of listicles summing up the things you shoulda/coulda/woulda been doing after graduating, these are just a few simple moves I found helpful.

With many college and high school graduations on the horizon or in the rear view mirror, these tips will hopefully guide you as you make the transition. If you’re not graduating, no fear, this post is still for you!

Breathe

You did it! Spend a few days relishing in your accomplishments and finding freedom in all 24 hours of the day. Work will be there for the rest of your life; sleep in, go for a hike, read, do nothing. When I graduated from college, I discovered the magical properties of YOGA. My favorite yogi, Erin Motz, let me know that no matter how ungraceful or uncool I was, I could find joy and meaning in my own practice. Her 30-Day Yoga Challenge fueled my summer and gave me a place to ground my feet when so many things around me were changing.

Organize

Whether you’re returning home from years away at college, finishing high school, or completing any type of course, I’m sure you have stacks of paper, piles of books, and a few empty Starbucks cups lying around. Spring Cleaning has a whole new meaning when you can, both literally and metaphorically, throw your stress into the trash. One place that I know I neglected to purge was my closet. Will you really need all 12 of those cocktail dresses? Are the graphic tees from your youth really serving you well? Stuff a few trashbags and haul that junk to your closest Plato’s Closet. One trip and you could be $50 richer and look a few years wiser.

Stay Busy

While downtime is essential, it’s also so important to keep moving. If your next step is college, begin thinking about what needs to be prepared for your first year. Make doctor appointments, create shopping lists, save money, and enjoy the sights and sounds of your hometown. If you’re taking a giant step into the working world, find your favorite coffee shop, place at the local library or comfy kitchen chair and begin your research. If you haven’t already thought about job prospects, no better day than today! I once read that you should dedicate the length of your day that normally would be spent working, looking for a job. For some that may be excessive, but the concept is that the more you work towards your goal, the sooner you’ll see results. Make edits to your resume to reflect your most recent accomplishments, draft cover letters, and begin reaching out to the companies you are most interested. A successful job search process is one that caters to proactiveness, consistency, and effective and timely communication. My favorite sites for job search tips (and really anything) is Career Contessa, Levo League and The Prepary.

Keep Learning

Learning is a life-long process and doesn’t require textbooks or continuous college enrollment. Check out this list of TED Talks, spend the day at a local museum, watch the news every morning, ask others about their work…the pathways to knowledge are endless. Learning doesn’t stop when you turn in your last 30 page paper, it just gets a little more interesting.

Just as there’s no “right” way to live life, there’s no best way to be a responsible adult. Find a variety of methods or a routine that works for your lifestyle and you’ll catch your step in no time.

What did you wish you knew last time a journey of yours ended?

SRS