If you’ve just entered your final semester of college, you’re probably freaking out. Now that the holidays are over, you may find yourself facing the answerless dilemma of where the time has gone. You’re just months away from walking across a stage to shake hands with the dean of your school and your anxiety level couldn’t be higher. So what’s next? The real world?
Hopefully you’ve begun to plan out the next steps of your life. If not, don’t worry — you’re not alone. Take a deep breath because you’re about to jump into some of the most interesting times of your life. Here’s what you should and definitely should not do as you head toward graduation and real life.
Whether you are considering moving far away or just taking a job that may not work out, do something to push yourself. Who cares if you fail? Your life will be full of gatekeepers who try to stifle your dreams and goals, but you are in the driver’s seat of your life. Take control.
I’m not suggesting you troll frat parties for the rest of time — go to parties that are more mature, that require you to dress a little nicer, have intellectual conversations and get twice as wild. Try going to a local concert with a few friends and don’t hold back. Just get out and do something you wouldn’t have done in your college town. If at the end of the night you’re cuddling with the porcelain in your bathroom, job well done.
Indulge in time alone
This is vital for you to understand yourself. It takes a lot of courage to be alone, but by doing this, you will learn to create your own happiness.
Regardless of your financial situation, figure out how to swing travel, because now is the time to see the world. The lessons you glean from travel, while away from your family and friends, are essential to figuring out yourself and your life.
Let it all go
Your past is in the past; acknowledge this and embrace the things you cannot change. It’s best simply to let go, as holding on to grudges will only hold you back from personal growth.
Listen to what others tell you to do
Sometimes, the people in our lives will infiltrate our minds and coerce us to reconsider our decisions. If you’re considering whether or not to take a risk, sure, ask other people’s opinions, but don’t let their thoughts be your only factor in your final decision.
Pretend you are still in college
Do not, under any circumstance, try to hang around campus after you graduate. It’s time to move on; you need to understand that you’re not going to gain anything from loitering around your old frat house. I’m not suggesting you cut off your friendships, but sitting around and smoking weed all day won’t make your life dynamic.
Jump straight into a relationship
It’s natural (and admirable) to strive to make someone else happy and to seek companionship. But for most people just starting out in the world, it’s probably a bad idea. Being independent is one of the best choices you can make for yourself after just finishing school; love yourself before you love someone else.
Follow the norms
Oh, so you want that nine-to-five gig your roommate scored? Do you really? Why? Break the mold and try something less traditional while you don’t have responsibilities that exceed your personal livelihood.
Never sell yourself short regarding who you are and what you seek to accomplish. Maybe this seems simple, but we allow doubt to cloud our minds far too often. Go out there and rule this world. It’s yours to take.