I am the first to graduate college in my family. I graduated from a great university with a bachelor’s degree in journalism and was ecstatic to move to a big city to find my dream job.
But, the closer graduation got, the more I felt as though the last thing I had was my sh*t together.
My fellow classmates were planning their next great adventures while I was left to wonder what I was doing wrong.
I started to wonder, why am I, like so many other 20-somethings, becoming exposed to the post-grad blues?
The symptoms include being envious of others' success, feeling bitter you don’t have a 401(k) and questioning your undergraduate decisions.
Trust me, I would have loved to have a job lined up post-graduation, but it just didn’t happen like that. Instead, I continued to waitress to pay the bills, all the while hearing, "what’s next?"
It’s a valid question for anyone to be asked following 18 years of school, but I honestly had no clue what was next.
I had a slight idea of the accomplishments I wanted to reach following college but never had a set plan — that’s when I began to worry.
It seemed as though I wasn’t the only one suffering from an outbreak of the post-grad blues, which is when I began to wonder how it affects its victims.
Post-grad blues, or PGB, often stems from society’s view on what college graduates should be doing after college.
Like most things in life, there’s an expectation that most adults feel should be met after completing a degree in a specific field.
This expectation leads them to the most asked question of college grads: Have you started applying for jobs yet?
You see, Millennials are incredibly tired of planning for the future, and we’re over being shamed for not having our career paths pinpointed after college.
We respect the people who contributed to our success and the individuals who had faith that we could make it to the end, but enough is enough.
Instead of making us feel bad for our decisions, respect them.
Our generation will be one of the most successful in history because we know exactly what we want.
We want the option to travel before we start a career, we want the option to freelance on a beach instead of sit in an office and most of all, we want the option to create our own lives, not live by someone else’s set of rules.
The good news is, PGB can be cured in just five simple steps:
Stop trying to live your life in the order society thinks is acceptable.
It’s okay to stray a little (that’s what makes life fun, duh).
Understand that the jobs will be there when you’re ready.
If you want to travel the world or live off the grid for a year, do it because it won't get any easier later on in life.
Money isn’t everything.
Obviously, we all wish we could be making six figures but in the long run, it’s better to settle for something that makes us happy instead of miserable.
Learn to love the journey.
It may be incredibly sh*tty hearing the word “no” over and over again, but believe that there’s always that one “yes” that makes the difference.
Do it for yourself and no one else.
College is a time for us to please our parents with our grades and accomplishments. After college, it’s all about you.
Instead of letting the post-grad blues get the best of you, live, laugh and love the best years of your life.