3 Things You Must Do Before Graduation

It’s October.  It’s officially the month of post-grad tests, job fairs, grad school applications and trying to boost your network before second semester senior year – so you can get a job.  Depending on where you are in this mess of a year, you might be worried, confused, or you could be doing alright.

I only have three tips for doing well this year.

1.  Network!  If you don’t know what you want to do after college, spend sometime networking with people you admire.  Apply for cool opportunities, jobs, and grad schools.  Talk to people.  Believe me, they definitely want to help you.

  • Use social media.  Find people on LinkedIn & Twitter who do things you want to do.  Ask them for an informational interview.  Get their advice.
  • Go to events and meet alumni.  Tell them what you have in mind.  Admire what they’ve done and tell them what you want to do.

2. Enjoy this year.  You’re only a senior in college once.  Spend some time with people you may not see for a very long time.

  • Take risks. Do some things you’ve never done.  Self explanatory.
  • Connect with your professors.  They’re professors for a reason.  They want to help you so spend some time in their offices.

3.  No matter where you are or what you’re doing a year from now, Know that you’ll be fine.  If someone had told me that I could live on my own in the city on a teller’s salary and have money left over – I wouldn’t have believed it.  But it’s true.  You’ll be fine in this bad economy.  If you have to take a job that you don’t want, take it, but never lose sight of your vision.   And you can do amazing things.  Just enjoy it – know that a year from now, you’ll be somewhere in the world making waves (because that’s just what millenials do =).

What’s your best tip for college seniors? 

Adrienne Johnson is a freelance writer and editor in Indianapolis, Indiana.  A graduate of DePauw University and a self-proclaimed “nerdette,” she can’t get enough of witty shows like Community and New Girl while discussing articles from her favorite blogs with friends. She laughs loudly, sings constantly, and will always have a place in her heart for the cello. Get in touch.

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5 Traits You Need to Be the Best at Your New Job

Being a newbie is awful.  Thankfully you’re not alone. Here are some tips to help you adjust to your new job.

1. Initiative. Make yourself knowledgeable.  You have tons of questions right now.  Make yourself familiar with the resources available to you (i.e. Policies & Procedures).

2. Confidence. Be willing to take (reasonable) risks.  At some point you’ll have to own your responsibility.  Once you’re familiar with the general aspects of your work, don’t be afraid to take (reasonable) risks on the job.

3. Wisdom. Learn from others’ mistakes. ‘Nuff said.

4.  Intuition. Listen to your gut.  If someone asks you to do something that would jeopardize you or give you added responsibility for their work, don’t do it.

5. Humility. Utilize constructive criticism. Everyone hates Newbie Know-it-All.  If a co-worker offers a suggestion, it’s more likely they want you to improve and less likely they’re trying to control your every move.

BONUS: Work ethic. Never take shortcuts.  They will be found out.  Do things the hard way first.  Then find faster and more efficient ways to complete tasks after you’re more familiar with your position.

Being a newcomer on the job isn’t the most exciting time in life, but with a little effort, you’ll be settled in ASAP.

What other tips would you give newbies on the job?

Adrienne Johnson is a freelance writer and editor in Indianapolis, Indiana.  A graduate of DePauw University and a self-proclaimed “nerdette,” she can’t get enough of witty shows like Community and New Girl while discussing articles from her favorite blogs with friends. She laughs loudly, sings constantly, and will always have a place in her heart for the cello. Get in touch.

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Signs You’ve Hit a Post-Grad Depression (Read: Mid-Life Crisis)

As soon as graduation was over my family and I packed up our cars and drove all my things to my grandmother’s house where I spent the next six months.  You see, I was heading to Ghana after graduation for a two week internship with a publishing company there and upon realizing that I actually needed to get a job, I came back to the U.S. to my part-time job at Carson’s and slumped, slowly but surely, into a depression.

Like Dean Anderson says, “Being depressed feels like the way things “really are,” not like a medical problem.”

Many people have a lot of things to say about depression, that it’s a mental trick, or if you pray enough, it will go away, but I don’t believe any of that.  You see, I didn’t know I was depressed.  I thought the sleeping all the time, the restlessness, the agitation and anxiety was just a normal part of myself that I’d hidden all these years.  I thought my body was just recovering from late nights writing for seminar, but it wasn’t just that.

I gained at least 50 pounds in a year.

I became a recluse and sincerely unhappy with the state of my life – with no plan to remedy my situation.

All of this and I never would have called it a depression.

Yes, there were some moments when I didn’t want to get out of bed, but me – a normally outgoing person – avoided everyone I knew.  It wasn’t until July of this year that I realized (with the help of relatives) what was going on with me.

So, I went to my doctor.

And as doctor’s normally do, she asked me what was wrong – and I burst into tears.  I just wasn’t myself.  And as doctors normally do, she offered me a prescription.  I didn’t want to use prescription drugs (because of the risk of addiction).  She mentioned an herbal supplement that has been proven to enhance mood – St. John’s Wort. And therapy.

I still haven’t taken her up on that therapy offer.

Recognizing the Signs Depression
You are probably dealing with clinical depression (which warrants a visit to your doctor for evaluation) if you have experienced 5 or more of the following symptoms (and at least one of them is among the first two listed), nearly every day for two weeks or more: 

1. Loss of interest in things you normally enjoy
2. Feeling down, depressed, or hopeless
3. Thoughts of death or suicide
4. Feeling worthless or guilty
5. Problems falling asleep, staying asleep, waking too early or sleeping too much
6. Unexplained decrease or increase in appetite, resulting in weight gain or loss within the last month.
7. Trouble thinking, concentrating, remembering, and making decisions
8. Extreme tiredness or lack of energy that interferes with your ability to work or take care of your daily responsibilities
9. Feeling restless, unable to sit still, or abnormally slow when moving

Source

Check out the rest of the article on the hidden signs of depression. I found it insightful.  As always, if you have thoughts of harming yourself or others please call 1-800-273-8255 right now.

Have you ever been depressed? If so, how did you deal?

Adrienne Johnson is a freelance writer and editor in Indianapolis, Indiana.  A graduate of DePauw University and a self-proclaimed “nerdette,” she can’t get enough of witty shows like Community and New Girl while discussing articles from her favorite blogs with friends. She laughs loudly, sings constantly, and will always have a place in her heart for the cello. Get in touch.

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How to be a Savvy College Grad (Even When You Don’t Feel Like One)

 

I graduated from college over a year ago and, needless to say, I’m not where I thought I should be.  You know, with my college degree and all.  I mean, some of my friends have great jobs that are right in their career path while others are in graduate school or even at home.  Yet, here I am – a teller at a bank (for now).

And truthfully, there should be no shame in my game.  I have a degree that I’m using, bills that are getting paid, family that loves me and friends that are true.  But still, there was a ginormous amount of adjusting I had to do in order to get to this point.

Maybe you’re gravy right now and are doing your best to get in shape, save and invest for your future, and make personal strides.  Or maybe you’re like me and you’re not where you thought you would be since you graduated. If so, here are some suggestions to help you get there:

If you’re having trouble paying them, put your student loans in deferment or forbearance.  This is usually pretty easy to do.  Figure out how much you’re spending on household bills, rent, gas, and food, and then factor in the cost of loan payments.  If you can’t stretch it, postpone it.  This should be a short-term solution because interest still continues to accrue on each loan daily. When you get a better paying job, get back to paying them quickly!

Get a roommate.  It’s a lot easier to pay the aforementioned bills when you’re splitting them.  You also don’t have to worry about buying all new furniture. Simple.

Exercise and eat healthy.  Stress caused by a transition – like graduating from college – might affect you mentally and emotionally.  Keep your body in balance by exercising and eating healthy. You’ll feel better and won’t dread those awkward moments when you run into someone from your alma mater.

This is a post I wrote the blog of professional career counselor, Steve Langerud. Read the rest here.

Adrienne Johnson is a freelance writer and editor in Indianapolis, Indiana.  A graduate of DePauw University and a self-proclaimed “nerdette,” she can’t get enough of witty shows like Community and New Girl while discussing articles from her favorite blogs with friends. She laughs loudly, sings constantly, and will always have a place in her heart for the cello. Get in touch.

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