I still remember the time when I was a Senior in High School back in June of 2000. Many people knew from an early age exactly what they wanted to be when they “grow up” and how to get there. There were plenty of friends and family members who used to look down upon us individuals who were not as focused as others.. but the truth is that we didn’t care at the time and just knew that we were going to “make it”.
Graduating from High School was the scariest thing that could have happened to any one of us in the Senior class of our High School. We were content with the comfortable, laid-back, relaxed, “bubble” type of atmosphere we were living in and we were more than nervous about leaving “home”. For me, high school was not entirely about building your life and laying out the stepping stones for your future, but it was more about learning who you are and how to adapt to your surroundings (or so we thought at the time…). As difficult as times could be … with the stress, the problems, the relationships, and the drama… I think everyone was completely unaware of what life had in store for them after those childish days.
I had just turned 18 when I entered my freshman year at University and was completely clueless to my surroundings. I had mixed feelings and didn’t know if I was excited or depressed to be there. I was a lost soul who just wandered around campus wondering how I managed to grow up so quickly as I sat on a random bench on the other side of the world. I still look back and wonder how I had the energy to put up with my random roommates, the constant partying, and the ability to cope in a new environment. It’s quite strange to think that we are probably never going to get those care-free days ever again. Life seemed to hectic and I honestly believed that I was living my life as an adult and didn’t bother realizing that I hadn’t even stepped in the real world yet. I was definitely not warned or prepared of how life after college is going to be such a drastic change.
You have been in school for the majority of your life. What will life be like now that you are graduating from college? I remember standing outside my dorm room and saying the final farewell to my friends as I drove off with mixed feelings in my second hand college vehicle. The transition from a college student to a working professional had ended up affecting almost all aspects of my life. Not only have I had to adapt to my new surroundings at work constantly, but I have had to adjust to everything else around me as well.
Even though it’s easier to stay in denial at times, the truth is that friends eventually disperse to different countries to pursue new careers. You may even lose touch with your closest friends as everyone gets involved in their own lives and you are forced to build new relationships.
I guess one of the things that I have personally learnt in the past 4 years post-college is to be open to the idea of meeting new people. As one transitions from their college days to their professional lives, they should learn to grow and keep in touch with old ones as well. At the end of the day, everyone is on their own and one should be able to stand on their own two feet without having to depend on others. I look at those who are extremely intelligent yet have no social skills whatsoever and I feel sorry for them. I, for example, was never in the top of my class, never received a High-honor roll award, and never ended up getting a pat from any of my teachers and at times, it was highly disappointing. I guess I have learnt that in order to succeed, one must do what makes them happy and be able to do a damn good job at it as well. Your social skills aren’t going to get you anywhere unless you put your mind to it and stick it through the rough patches & obstacles that come your way.
Do I miss my college days already? Of course I do! I’m finally ready to admit that things will never be the same again. I will never be able to relax, sleep, eat, and hang out with my friends the same way ever again. There are never any late nights knowing that I have nothing to do tomorrow and one has to learn to be more responsible. The drastic transition brings new challenges that can be both exciting and intimidating! It may seem easy at first… but sooner or later… you will find yourself sitting on your bed at 6:30 am on a Monday morning asking yourself where your life is heading to …
This past year with the onset of the recession, I have begun to reassess and analyze my life and career path. I am now beginning to question my choices and wonder if this is what I really want to be doing for the rest of my life? Many of my very successful friends have unfortunately lost their jobs and are struggling to find another as this recession worsens. I am lucky to have my job but the insecurity that comes with seeing many around me lose jobs is hard to ignore. I am at a point where I am ready to explore options and places that not very long ago I would have dismissed but am now having the trouble to pursue them due to the recession.
Random post, huh? At least you can’t say that I didn’t warn you about chasing random thoughts …