It’s graduation season again, which means you’re probably one of the millions of fresh-faced graduates who’ll take their first steps in the real world. Before you dive headfirst into your first job, here are the most important lessons you’ll learn outside the university.
1. Your performance in school (mostly) doesn’t matter.
Of course, the resident cum laude will practically have employers eating out of the palm of his/her hand. But for the rest of us, it’s basically back to square one as soon as we step outside of that auditorium. College underachievers need not worry, as success in the real world takes more than intellect and the handful of theories you learned in the classroom.
2. Friends are your wealth
Try not to lose touch with your clique as much as possible, as not only are they are a vital support group, but they can also be a great source of job opportunities. As harsh as it sounds, the truth is that sometimes, getting a shot at that dream job is about who you’re connected with on the inside.
3. Your college prof is nothing like your boss
If you thought your Spanish teacher was the devil incarnate, then wait until you meet your boss. While not all of them will be Cruella Deville’s, all of them will expect nothing but the best results from you.
4. Experiences trump material things
Just as we will one day say ‘Sayonara’ to this Earth, your highly expensive, newly bought phone or bag will eventually say their goodbyes as well. So why not opt to invest in travelling and collect precious and timeless experiences instead?
While there’s no denying how great your skills are, that won’t stop you from starting at the bottom while earning a very meager salary. In the real world, experience is the ultimate currency, which you (initially) lack.
6. It’s never too early to start saving
Trust us, nothing is more embarrassing than asking your parents for an allowance when everyone – including your nosy next-door neighbor- knows you’re already earning a paycheck. It’s also never too early to save up for the future, even if it’s only small change.
7. But most of all live, relax, and enjoy
Your 20s will be a rollercoaster journey filled with a mixture of heartaches, enjoyment and wonder so don’t sulk when you feel confused with whichever path your life is currently taking you on. You will never be this young and open-minded again, so try new things, accept challenges, and ultimately be open to learning more about yourself.