Adjusting to Your Post-Graduate Life

From a college perspective life in the real world seems exciting, filled with opportunity, independence and best of all, no homework. It’s a chance to start making some real money, live on your own and begin a career. How hard can it be, right? You’ve nailed the job interview and moved into your new digs, so now what? Shifting from being a student into a full-time employee is a big transition and can be a bit overwhelming. After graduation you are thrown into the real world hoping that you have gained enough knowledge, training and experience to survive and thrive. Take some time and make sure you are doing these things right and the adjustment will be swift.

Modify your social life

ThinkstockPhotos-178370128The college days of going out with friends ‘til wee hours of the night and sleeping in are over. The professional world calls for a bit more responsibility and accountability on the weekdays. Now, this does not mean you can’t have a social life. You can still have fun on the weekdays you just need to be more conscious of waking up and feeling motivated for work. It’s okay to go to a movie or go meet friends for dinner, just make sure you get enough sleep. Plus, you’ll gain an extra appreciation for the weekends!

Give yourself time to adjust

The first day of your new job is always nerve-wracking, right? You wake up extra early, eat a big breakfast, and arrive early. This makes a great first impression and I’m sure it gets you started on the right foot. Try to keep this morning routine going. Give yourself time in the morning to wake up, watch the news, drink some coffee and still get to your desk early. Unlike college classes most jobs have a dress code. It takes a little while to get used to a new morning routine and different wardrobe but if you can start every day with an open mind and positive attitude the new schedule gets easier to adjust to. Don’t forget to account for morning traffic.

Figure out a routine

In addition to setting your morning routine it is just as important to figure out a daily and weekly routine. A routine at work will help the day go by faster. Take your break, lunch and afternoon snack around the same time each day, it gives you something to look forward to and work towards. Before and after work you need a schedule too. There are 168 hours in the week. Minus 40 hours a week for work and 56 hours a week for sleep, leaves you with  72 hours a week to run errands, workout, get a drink with friends, read a good book, and more. The trick is fitting those activities in to your new schedule. Don’t forget that people do it all the time, just give it time.

Avoid sitting for long periods of time

If you work 40 hours a week at a desk job then the emotional and physical stress of sitting can really wear you down. Taking breaks and stretching is important to your first full time desk job experience.  As a new hire, you have a lot of expectations, but keeping your mind and body healthy will keep you on the track to success. As a recent college grad your body is not used to sitting stagnant for long periods of times. A little trick not to forget is to bring a water bottle, every time you refill it take that time to walk around the office or block. This keeps you hydrated and energized.

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