Just 10 days after I graduated from the University of Georgia, I packed my bags to leave for New York City. Having never left home for an extended period, as the plane took off, a mix of excitement and nostalgia washed over me, evoking a few bittersweet tears.
There was no real break in between school and the working world. Despite the stress, I was ready to begin this new chapter. The shift was especially profound for someone like me, coming from a smaller suburban town to New York City was an intense change. I learned that Southern hospitality is not as popular up north. The environment, people, weather, and feelings were so different.
But, rather than resisting change, I embrace it.
Going from having free afternoons after my classes were done to an intense nonstop rhythm of an 8-hour workday was an adjustment. My routine had to be disciplined if I wanted to accomplish what I wanted to during the work week. Finding time for myself was hard, but it came down to discipline and priorities.
What is important to you?
That’s what helped me in this transition. I had to decide if it was watching Netflix after a long day or going to the gym and cooking a nutritious dinner.
Adulthood is about choices.
The choices I made in university were very different from the ones I make now. So, to all of those freshly graduated students out there who may be excited, nervous, or prepared for the “real world” be ready, it’s not going to be like anything you expected. And that’s okay.
Embrace the moments of uncertainty and fear, for they will only make the taste of success that much sweeter.
Remember, it's not just about landing the perfect job or climbing the corporate ladder. It's about discovering who you are, what ignites your passion, and how you can make a difference in this world. Hold on to your dreams, chase them relentlessly, and never lose sight of the fire that burns within you.