About the Author: Alan Diamond is an Irish graduate of Marketing, Public Relations & Event Management. He is immigrating to New York City this year and hopes to work in a PR agency to gain further experience in his desired field of work. He is currently the Marketing Operations Assistant at his family’s company Diamond’s Of Renvyle.
Just like the post-holiday blues – the kind of despair one gets after an amazing holiday – now more than ever, the post-college blues are on the rise. I’m not talking about the type of sadness you feel on a gloomy day in November, sitting in the library, doing assignments and looking out at the rain, but rather I’m talking about after college, once you graduate. Yes, that feeling of “what am I to do now?”, or “maybe I should do another degree” – well, I am now diagnosing this feeling as the “post-college blues.”
There are numerous reasons why we all miss college, for example: no more 3 month vacations for summer, no more skipping or turning up late to class, or what about the good old days when we only had 15 hours of class a week! This will all be replaced by 4 weeks of vacation time for the year, arriving early to impress the boss, and at least 40 hour work weeks. Yes, I’ll be the first to admit it; the adjustment you have to make once you graduate is one of the biggest you’ll make to date.
But instead of focusing on the negatives and what you’re going to miss the most about college, how about all the great things that lay ahead of you in the future? Orrin Hatch once said that “graduation is not the end; it’s the beginning.” And he was right. Post-graduation is the beginning of a new chapter in your life. Taking the right path towards your ideal career goals may be a long journey but it should be an enjoyable and memorable experience. Just like college, in the working world, you will get to meet people from other walks of life, from different schools, who studied other subjects; that is, if you think you are ready to join the work force.
Especially in today’s economy, graduates may fear the unknown, and may not want to leave their comfort zone. You might ask yourself if you are even ready to “settle down” into a career. Maybe you aren’t ready, which is OK too! You may decide you want to do more post-graduate courses, or travel for awhile and then decide what you want to do.
For me personally, I decided I wanted to be uncomfortable. I wanted to move to a big city (New York) and work with different people from all over the world and learn and experience new things. I knew at first it would be an adjustment, but more than anything, I knew I would be uncomfortable – which by the way, isn’t a negative thing. I would have to move to a new city in a new country, make new friends, get a job, get an apartment (and roommates because it’s NYC after all!). To say the least, I really got to know myself, and I am surviving the city and taking it day by day.
Now, I am not encouraging you all to go out and move to a big city or to make yourself uncomfortable in order to get to know yourself, but I am advising you to really ask yourself the question “how can I make an impact on the world?” It doesn’t have to be huge, but some small contribution to the world should suffice.
You have already made your families extremely proud of you by completing college, but in a society where corporate social responsibility is prevalent, you too should think about your ‘individual social responsibility.’ This might be the one thing that separates you from all of the others in a job interview.
So whether it be travelling, or a post-graduate degree, or joining the workforce, or whatever you may decide, just remember that the tassel was worth the hassle and that like any other form of depression, the post-college blues will come and they will go.
What do you think? How have you combatted the post-college blues?