September 5, 2018
In everyone’s life, there will, undoubtedly, be times of change and transition. If you have recently graduated from college, you may be experiencing one of the biggest transitions of your life so far. This time can be challenging due to the fact that up until this point you’ve always had a “next step.” A next semester, next year of classes, or even just your next test or assignment. You’ve always had concrete steps and goals to structure your life. Now, without them, you’re free to pursue anything and everything, which is both exciting and terrifying.
It took me about six months to find a “real” job here at Fast Horse. Those months were filled with uncertainty. Would I ever get a job I loved? Was I really cut out to be in this industry? Should I just settle for something to be able to say I have a job when friends and family ask, “so what have you been up to?” It was hard. But I learned to embrace it the best way I could. Here are some lessons I took from that time.
There will be few times in your life when you have as much free time as you do after you graduate from college. You may choose to get a part-time job but chances are your schedule will be more flexible then ever before. When I graduated I took advantage of this by going on a road trip I’d always dreamt of taking. Obviously, I didn’t have much money, so I camped most of the time, and was able to take an amazing trip at a fairly low cost.
There will be days when you apply for several jobs and feel accomplished because of all the work you’ve done. But on the days when there isn’t anything to apply for or you don’t have anything to do, it can be easy to succumb to lying around the house. While a good lazy day is important here and there, it can start to deplete your motivation and energy. Instead, go to a coffee shop, public library, or anywhere that you feel creative, and give yourself a project. Whether you’re into graphic design, writing, photography or something else, give yourself an assignment or goal. This will keep your skills sharp and your momentum moving in the right direction. And hey, maybe you’ll even create something worthy of being added to your portfolio.
Once you start a full-time career, you won’t have nearly as much time to do things like running errands, taking a long walk in the morning, or meeting friends for lunch. Embrace the freedom because even though it can at times make you feel aimless, you’ll miss having a day here and there to do whatever you want, on your own time.
Bottom line: no one loves job hunting or those awkward transitional times in life, but there’s a lot of good that can come with them. Embrace the free time, give yourself goals, and everything will work out the way it’s supposed to.