5 Things I’ve Learned Since Graduating

Well hello there! Welcome back!

Today I wanted to write about something a little bit different than the usual. Graduating. This week marks the first time in 16 years that I won’t be returning to school. Honestly, it feels great, but I also have a slight case of FOMO!

Throughout our lives, one of the things that we always know remains constant is the fact that every August, we go back to school. From elementary school to middle school, and high school to potentially college — at this point our brains are overflowing with tons of information related to education of course, but even more so about life.

I’ve always loved school, and I flourish in environments where I’m free to learn more about topics that are of interest to me. I always laugh when people talk about when they ‘peaked‘ in their lives, meaning they felt like for the first time, they had everything figured out.

I seriously don’t think that I’ve even peaked yet! But that’s okay! The whole point of college is to learn more about the kind of person you are and decide if that’s the person you are striving to be, or if it’s time to make a change.

As I sit here, writing this blog post, I’m missing my campus, my friends, and even my classes. But, I think that everyone can agree that you’ll always miss certain aspects of your life or different experiences that you had in the past. The whole point of those memories is to encourage you to make new ones. 

Change is always going to be inevitable, and you’ve just got to roll with it and pave the way for yourself every single day.

I’ve compiled a list of 5 things that I’ve learned since graduating from college. So, whether you’re still in high school, or just beginning college, or you’ve just recently graduated like myself, I hope you can find common ground through my words.

Enjoy!


Lesson #1: Spontaneity is better than being bored every. single. time.

As a person, I’ve never been one to wait for things to happen in my life. I go out, work hard and hope that in time, I can make great things happen in my life. I can 100% say that 2017 has been the year of spontaneity for me.

I got to go to Paris during spring break of my senior year, I planned a two-week trip across Italy in a week, and I’ve been constantly pushing myself to be more personal and relatable on my blog.

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Paris
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Florence

I love being busy in my life. I think I actually fear boredom, which is something that can easily creep up on you following college graduation.

I remember one of my friends who graduated the year before me said that one of the downsides of graduating is that you have way too much free time. When he told me that I was like, “How is it even possible to have too much time to do what you want?! I honestly didn’t get it.

That conversation definitely stuck in my head up until I graduated, and in a way, I made a subconscious pledge to myself to constantly invest in my family, my friends and the things that I love to do following graduation, so that boredom would not become a friend of mine.

Being bored doesn’t have to be something you deal with every day. Break out those hobbies you used to love before you went to college. I know for myself, I’ve been writing so much more, which is something I love, and I’ve been crafting and trying to do one DIY project a week.

Honestly, I say it all the time but it still reigns true. Literally just YOLO all the time. YOLO. YOLO. YOLO. Life isn’t about getting it right every time, it’s about living day by day, doin’ stuff you like and being a kind person. So get out there and do something spontaneous!

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LOL

Lesson #2: Never undervalue yourself or your skills.

If you’re anything like me, and probably the majority of college graduates, you’ll leave college without a job or any idea where exactly you want to be.

The first thing to know is that there’s absolutely nothing wrong with not having a job when you graduate! I think that people put a lot of pressure on us to find something because they want to be supportive. But, anyone who has applied for jobs or is currently on the job search knows: This stuff is not easy.

The truth of the matter is that at some point in your job search, you’ll be rejected from a job. That’s life! The most important thing to wrap your head around is that rejection doesn’t been that you’ve failed or that you’re not talented. It simply means that a company is missing out on one of the best employees they could have had.

Despite rejection, never undervalue yourself! You’re a hardworking, talented, and creative person! Never let rejection or the job search stop you from believing that!

Lesson #3: Coming back to your hometown after graduation is a great thing, but it won’t be the same as when you left it before freshman year.

I think that a basic part of human nature is that we occasionally wish that things would always remain the same, and that we’ll always know where we stand in the world. But, change is inevitable.

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Hometown Vibes!

After graduation, I was excited to move home. I will always hold a place in my heart for my hometown, but it definitely isn’t the same as when I left four years ago. In high school, you’ve got all your friends living in close proximity to you, and you’ve got them to hangout with leading up to when you leave for college.

When you part ways and promise to stay in touch, sometimes life gets in the way. It’s okay to lose touch with people — you can always reconnect at any point! But something I’ve realized since being back in my hometown is that not only does it look different to me, but it feels different too.

Despite the changes, you’ve got to make the best of it! Things will fall back into place over time and you’ll gain your footing back. But if you’re anything like me, you may feel like a stranger in your own hometown for a while, and that’s okay!

Lesson #4: Not having an answer for everything isn’t a bad thing.

Something that any college graduate can agree on leading up to and after graduation is that everyone wants to know what everyone else is going to do with their career. It’s just curiosity! 

In all honesty, the questions regarding your career path will never stop. It’s something that I’ve been asked all summer. “What are you up to now?” “How’s the job search going?” “Have you looked at this company for jobs?”

For the majority of the questions I’ve been asked about my career, I haven’t had an answer. It’s okay to not have it figured out! I’m a go-with-the-flow kind of person, and I know that if I work hard and persevere, I’ll find whatever it is that I’m looking for.

One of the most important things that a friend said to me before we graduated was that I shouldn’t feel the need to explain myself to people for the choices I make in my life.

After college, there is a lot of pressure to have it all figured out — that’s just the nature of it. But it’s up to you to take a deep breath, collect your thoughts, and come to the realization that having answers doesn’t always mean you have it all figured out!!!

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Feelin’ stressed? Have some cotton candy!!!!

Don’t stress about the unknowns in life. Things will work out the way that they are meant to in time, so just keep doin’ your thang!

Lesson #5: Don’t be afraid to be yourself.

Through the stresses leading up to graduation, to the job search following graduation, it can be easy to lose yourself along the way. But, taking a little time off from the real world to find yourself again can be the answer.

College is awesome and fun and interesting, but it’s also very stressful some of the time. Now that I’ve graduated, I’ve found that I have so much more time to just be myself, and to flourish and grow into the person I’ve always wanted to be!

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It’s okay to take a step back and say that you’re not ready to find a job.

It’s okay to have no clue what you want to do with your career.

It’s okay to go back home and figure it all out.

It’s okay to not have the answer for everything.

And it’s okay to push yourself out of your comfort zone and try new things.


College graduation is weird, sad and a little bit scary, but it just opens up the gates to the rest of your life! And let me tell you from experience, when those gates open, that’s when your life really begins.

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Taking in the VIEWS!

Well, that’s all I’ve got for today! I will be back on the blog soon to share something super exciting with you!

Until then, keep smilin’, dance around to some cool jams — like the songs on this playlist— and keep spreadin’ those stylishly good vibes!

THANKS A BUNCH FOR READING!

Alicia

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Photo Credit: Stylishly Good Vibes

 

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