Graduating and entering the real world can be a really daunting thing, even if you have your post-grad life all figured out. It can be easy to feel like you’re the least prepared, but even the people who seem the most calm and collected are probably internally freaking out. No matter what your situation is, you’re now entering an entirely new stage of life, and any advice can help. Here are a few tips to keep in mind as you navigate your way through your first summer as a real adult.
Don’t get discouraged too easily
You might not find your dream job right away. You might not find a perfect apartment right away. This is ok. Don’t feel pressured to immediately move out of home or immediately find a job, but if you are searching, don’t give up too quickly or feel like you’ll never find what you want. Don’t settle for less than you deserve or something you weren’t looking for. You have your whole life ahead of you, so for now focus on happiness and taking care of yourself. If you’re working at a job you don’t love you don’t have to immediately quit, just remember it doesn’t have to be permanent.
Update your wardrobe
Once you graduate college all of your crop tops, excessively ripped jeans and Greek life t-shirts aren’t really acceptable to wear anymore, especially not to work. Investing in some quality professional outfits will be a must, and the sooner you get started the better. Just because you have to dress for work doesn’t mean you have to look ugly, there are plenty of ways to look stylish in business casual. You also don’t have to completely abandon your old style; you can still find ways to incorporate pieces you like into your wardrobe.
Balance your work and personal life
Going from skipping every 8 a.m. and spending Thursday’s at Huskies to being an adult who works 9-5 Monday through Friday isn’t an easy transition. If you’re working full time, allow yourself to have some time on the weekends to relax or do something fun. It’s not good to never allow yourself time to unwind, but it’s also not good to party 24/7 post-grad. Try to find a balance and stick with it. Life after college is definitely not as carefree, but you’re still allowed to have fun sometimes.
Try to save whenever you can
This can be a difficult one, especially with a starting salary, but creating a savings account now will help you get into the habit of saving money right away. Even just putting away $10 a week or per paycheck will add up and make a big difference. If there’s ever an emergency and you need the money it’ll really come in handy. Trust me, you’ll thank yourself later.
This is the most important tip. It can be easy to feel overwhelmed or compare yourself to fellow graduates, but just focus on doing what’s right for you. Remember that your mental and physical health always has to come first. The transition from college to adult life can be difficult and overwhelming, especially if you jump right into a full time job. Just remember, you’re doing amazing sweetie.
Melissa Scrivani is the associate life editor for The Daily Campus. She can be reached via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.