Post-Graduation Tips

1. Travel: School's out for the summer! Now's the time to pack your bags and head off somewhere new and exciting. The more unfamiliar the place, the better. Get lost. Find yourself.

2. Challenge yourself: You'll have "teachers" all your life, but no set curriculum. It's up to you now to choose to challenge yourself. When it seems easier to play it safe, remember that you won't grow if you don't break out of your comfort zone.

3. Be smart with money: Student loans are no joke. If you're faced with loans, make a plan now to pay them off. Secondly, when your first few paychecks start rolling in, it's great to be excited, but spend your money wisely. Remember, you're creating your habits (of all kinds) now.

4. Stay optimistic: In the first few months after graduating, everything feels like a new experience. You land a new job, you lease your first apartment, you're excited to take what you have learned in school and apply it in the world. When the newness wears off and things start becoming monotonous, always try to remember that feeling of just-graduated-optimism to inspire yourself.

5. Your first job won't be your last job: Everyone is on a quest to find their dream job, but don't let that keep you from just getting started. Even if the job presented to you has very few resemblances to what you imagine yourself doing, just take it and see what happens. How many people have you met in your life that have had one job their entire post-graduate life? Very few, if any.

6. Do something you love: Sometimes we have to take a job for the time being so we can pay the bills. If that's the case, always be sure to still make time in the day to do something you love. Keep honing your skill, keep feeding your interest. If you're lucky, eventually the thing you love and the thing you do to make money will collide. 

7. Meet new people: One of the best ways to expand your horizons and to keep learning after school is to meet new people. Maintain the friends you've made in school, but always try and branch out. Some of the best friendships can be found in the most unlikely of places. 

8. Don't compare: One of the strangest adjustments between life in school and life out of school is that there are now a million different directions to take. Again, there's no longer a set curriculum - you make your own. When a friend gets a steady job at a Fortune 500 company and you're still unsure about what you want to do, fight against the stinging urge to compare. You're on different paths and that's okay.

9. Keep learning: Pick up a newspaper, pick up a book, learn a new skill. The end of school does not mean the end of learning, and shouldn't. No matter where life takes you, never forget that there's always something new to learn.

10. Dive in: The most important thing after school is just to get started somewhere. There are no wrong answers. Take advantage of your blank slate. If you go off course and need to recalibrate, you can always change jobs, change cities, change directions... or even go back to school.