5 Ways to Be Successful After College

Whew! You have made it through tough lectures, intense quizzes, nerve-wracking presentations, and more tests than you would ever care to remember. Congratulations on getting through it all! Graduating from college is an exciting feeling. Finally, you can set your schedule and start looking for a job in the professional world. The initial months after college graduation are very important. While it’s easy to want to take it easy—and you definitely should for a little while—there is a lot of work for you when it comes to breaking into your field. Are you nervous? Scared? Intimidated? Don’t be. You are well on your way to making things happen, and the following tips will help.

These important pieces of advice will help you maintain a healthy outlook and a proactive approach when it comes to your future:

1. Take control of your life.

While a student, it can be easy to fall into a slump when it comes to being responsible. Many college kids take partying and sleeping late as two of the most important commandments in having a good time. Yet, while these behaviors are a part of what makes college life fun, after you graduate, it’s time to grab the wheel and steer the metaphoric car of your life. Rather than spend your time stuck in your past college days, refocus your energies on being a success and finding a job.

2. Plan the direction of your route.

Part of what makes post-college life a lot of fun is being able to map out which direction you want to head in. Think about yourself and what you want to be doing. Be realistic about how to get there, and create a plan of how to reach your goals. Do you need to work at a starting position for a while, or are you going to have to work part-time while gaining more hands-on experience as an intern? These are all great ways to begin thinking about your future.

3. Use your connections to harvest allies.

There is no denying the importance of networking. Friends, family members, teachers, and co-workers can all become essential tools for bringing you work and helping you get ahead. The way to gain helpful contacts is by being yourself and expressing an interest in doing well. Talk about your goals, ask relevant questions to people who are interested or knowledgeable about your line of work, and show appreciation for any help they may provide. Sometimes it takes awhile to see any results, but be patient.

4. Always move steadily forward.

It can be easy to lose hope if things don’t take off right away. During these times it is more important than ever for you to prove yourself. Remember to keep moving no matter what. Whether it’s by working a part-time job outside of your field, taking a few continuing education classes during the week, or lining up a bunch of informational interviews, your determination will pay off. Keep in mind that taking classes and working are both great things for your resume. They can give it the edge that employers are looking for, so choose your opportunities wisely.

Many people who have recently graduated from college find it difficult to break into the professional world. Yet, others blend into life after college almost perfectly. Use these tips to find yourself in the latter category. Remember, you are qualified to work and you have the necessary knowledge to be of help to others. Always remind yourself of this, and you will go far!

For more posts and relevant articles by Sara Kosmyna.

How would you describe your post-college experience? Was it easy or difficult to find your first job? Share your story below.

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