Congratulations! You have just accomplished what fewer that ⅓ of Americans ever get the opportunity to do.
Whether you did it in exactly four, a year early or a year late, never shortchange yourself on this accomplishment! It’s not just a diploma or a credential. It’s a representation of the years of dedication and grit you had to summon to get to where you are today.
For many, the most anticipated day of your life has quickly become the most daunting day of your life as you begin to question, “Now what?”
The most important thing you can do now that you’ve earned your degree is to celebrate your accomplishment. Remember all the tears, exams, labs, tears, group projects, finals and tears? Well they’d all be for nothing if you don’t celebrate your accomplishment.
You don’t have to have an elaborate party, but have drinks or treat yourself to dinner. Go ahead. You’ve earned it.
2. Enjoy Yourself
It has probably been years since you have had a fair amount of time for yourself. Before you start to settle down and move forward, take some time to decompress and do something for you. When the time is right the pieces of your professional life will fall into place, but, for now, enjoy being in control of your own time. Catch up on your Netflix queue, go to the movies, go on a hike or the like. It’s possible to overwork yourself and this will help you avoid building those bad habits that lead to burnout.
3. Come to Terms With Reality
It is imperative that you learn what your limitations are at this stage in your life. Don’t hate on yourself if you are not making what you were expecting to make right out of school or if you’re struggling to find a job you really want it takes time. You may not have relocated to where you would’ve liked to either. All of this is fine.
Just look back at your college career. Your diploma didn’t come overnight and neither will your dream job or house. It takes time to get to where you want to be so never compare yourself to where you want to be but rather to where you were. You’ll get there eventually.
4. Make Goals
Once you have come to terms with where you are in life, makes plans and goals to set you ahead. Sit down and make a list of what you want to accomplish in the next 3-5 years. Whether it be paying off your student loan debt, buying a car, buying a house or starting a family, write it down so you won’t forget. Then, make a plan to get there.
Use checklists to help you be productive and measure your progress from time to time. Do this and you will see your desired results much much faster.
5. Go For It
You most likely sat through a commencement speech at graduation. The thing is that most people seem to look at these speeches as the end of their undergraduate career. Really though, commencement is the beginning of your next journey. The root word “commence” means to start and your starting the next chapter in your life.
Your life is in your hands and where you go is up to you. Try to be a bit adventurous now. You can always return to the known, but you’ll never have freedom and youth on your side like you do now again.
This is the start of the next and most exciting chapter of your life, and you are the author.
The views expressed in this article are the opinion of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Lone Conservative staff.