Show The World What You're Made Of! Making The Most Of Your First Year After University

by - 16 December

*This is a contributed post. All opinions are the writers own.


There's that moment just after you received your diploma, that you are caught between the past and the future. In one sense, you can relax because you finally achieved your degree, but now the whole world awaits you! Naturally, we can all feel some sense of trepidation. But the key to navigating that first year after university has been completed is partly to do with setting the groundwork for your career but it is also about putting in place valuable life lessons to see you through the remainder of your 20s. What can you do to ensure that you make the most of your first year after leaving university, professionally and personally?

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There Is No Rush To Start Your Ideal Career


You might feel that, as soon as you receive that diploma, you are chomping at the bit and ready to go! But building up a career isn't something that you need to do by the age of 25. In fact, it's not something you necessarily need to do by the time you're 40! Your ideal career, and by proxy, your ideal life, will slot into place just as soon as you start to figure out what makes you happy. It is a major cliche, but if you find something that you love doing, then you won't ever feel like you're going to work. But also, when you are on the lookout for an ideal career, you may believe that you have got to achieve it sooner rather than later. It's far better for you too to make yourself happier before doing anything else. So many people have learnt the lessons from taking a gap year so, when they finally start work, they've already done a lot of learning. On Seeing The World Whilst You're Young: A Guide there are some useful hints. It's important to see the world when you are younger, not just because you don't have as much responsibility, but you have more energy, and you should learn these lessons sooner rather than later. Your career can wait! Make sure you get happy first.

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Now Is The Time To Form Good Habits


Whether you are ready to jump into your career because you've got the perfect job lined up with ideal progression, or you're more than happy to wait, now is the opportunity to form habits for a healthy and happy life. As you have been through university, you already know just how little routine you had. Now, if you start to work, you fall into a routine almost naturally. You will start to realise what you need to keep yourself energised, such as the adequate amount of sleep, but also, the other aspects of your life need addressing. Certain habits like keeping your home tidy, learning new skills, and planning are all components that you can learn right now. A lot of being thrown into adulthood after graduating can mean that you almost don't want to bid goodbye to your old life. And naturally, you can feel like you are out of your depth. But this opportunity that presents itself is crucial so you can start to choose how to live your life.

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If You Want To Achieve Things, You've Got To Work For Them


It's at this point in your life where you can set goals. In fact, now, this is the ideal opportunity because you are ready to go and chomping at the bit! But because we are stuck between our old university habits, and struggling to slot into our new workaday week, we can find ourselves feeling like that our new life is incredibly difficult. But you have to remember that if you've got specific goals, especially when you set them in university, you will need to work for them. Some people feel that as soon as they graduate, they will fall into their ideal career. But this is when the shock of life truly hits us. Especially now, we look at how much debt we are saddled with after leaving university, and the difficulties we endured to keep ourselves afloat to get that diploma, we might feel that we are due a break. If anything, the intensity may very well ramp up! It's worth preparing yourself, during this year after leaving, to put those habits in place that encourage you to work towards your goals. Nothing ever comes for free. 

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And if you want to set up a life for yourself, you will have to understand the value of hard work but also realise where you fall down. It's so easy for people to start claiming benefits but doing this is an incredibly depressing cycle to stay in. It's much better for you to have control over your life by working a job that pays, even if it's not what you want to do right now. Have yourself a progression track in mind, think about what you need to do to get there, and as well as this, think about starting up a side hustle. So many people are now taking the opportunity to start their own businesses. And when people are so disappointed that they can't get their ideal job, this is when they have to realise that if they want a job that isn't out there, they have to make it themselves.

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There are so many different shocks to the system after you leave university. While a lot of people now realise that nothing comes for free if you are excited about what the future holds, and you have a specific goal in mind, you must remember that to achieve your ambitions, you've got to knuckle down. It could be exhausting going through university, but when we get out the other side, and there are friends of yours that have seemingly have found their ideal job already, it is so easy for us to be jealous of them. The biggest lesson we can all learn after we leave university is that we shouldn't compare ourselves to other people who have supposedly landed on their feet. But you may not know the whole story, and when we start to make comparisons between us and them, it's far better for us to focus on our own goals and our happiness. You have got that diploma, now show the world what you're made of! 

So what did you do the first year after leaving university/college? Let me know in the comments below and while you are here why not check out some of my other lifestyle-related posts?

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