To all the soon-to-be graduates:

Congrats! You have made it to the big leagues! (hooray!) You will hopefully appreciate all the hard work you have put into your university to take the time to attend graduation, walk across that stage, & get that fake diploma! Hopefully you already have a job or post-graduation plans in place and are ready to see what the world has to offer. But beware, you might find more than what you were looking for…

1) post-graduation depression is real. You left the place you called home, your friends who were right around the corner from you, basically everything you’ve known. And once you leave, you will realize that you will work. A lot. You might be able to travel but there is no more on the whim destinations with a couple buddies. You might be going to another school to pursue another degree or to further your education, but things are still going to change and you need to prepare yourself for the rollercoaster ride.

2) instead of letting that depression eat you up, focus on bettering yourself. Our whole life has been focused on learning, growing, and our future. Instead, better yourself for yourself (and be in the present). It took me almost a year after graduation to realize this. There are many different things you can do, but whatever it is, make sure it makes you happy.

3) try something new! Our life is in this constant comfort zone until you get bored and then you might try something and give up on it soon-after. Now you have the time and ability to focus on this new thing so try it again, try it better, and stick to it!

4) change your outlook on life. Cut back on those volunteer hours, spend time with your loved ones, make new friends, and realize your outlook isn’t only acing that exam. You no longer have to spend time thinking about how your future employer or future university will judge your resume. You have it now!

5) make that money, money, money! You now have this adult job or you are going to grad school and will be making more money. At first, your paycheck will shock you. You now have all this extra money you haven’t been used to having and you don’t know what to do with it. You could travel, you could go shopping, or even treat yourself at the spa. That’s your choice but I highly suggest either paying off your loans, buying a new car since you probably still have the same dump of a washup from when you were 16, or buy your first home! Whatever it is, make sure it’s not going to stress you out and will help make the transition to adulthood better!

After all, you just completed something unimaginable or unachievable for many! Be proud of yourself, be ready for the reality shock, and prepare for the rollercoaster ride!!!

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