So a friend recently asked me for some advice. She’s in this dilemma; one that many of us have been in. Graduation is just around the corner and she’s trying to decide where to live, where to work, what things in life are her top priorities, what’s going to make her happy… I have to say for me, the year after graduation was the most confusing, uncomfortable, awkward year. I spent my time feeling sad I wasn’t in college and trying to figure out who I was. Not to mention, I was constantly unsure of where I was supposed to be or what I was supposed to be doing. Now, I won’t say that a year and half later I’m sitting pretty and have this puzzle of life all figured out, but I will say that I now see the world from a different perspective and the fog of feeling sad after college is for the most part gone. So this post is for that friend. I don’t have your life figured out for you and I don’t have the exact answer, but I think I can help you figure it out for yourself.
Ask yourself these questions. Recently, I’ve been doing this myself and it’s helping me to make a plan for my future and to understand what is important to me as a person.
1. Where do you see yourself in 10 years and are your decisions now going to help you to get to that point?
2. What things do you want to accomplish and experience before you get married and start a family?
3. A year after graduation, do you think you will be happy with where you’ve chosen to move and the job you’ve chosen to have?
4. What makes you happiest in life? It is being surrounded by friends, being close to a boyfriend, being close to family, feeling like you’re taking on the world on your own, feeling independent? It may be hard to decide which one of these things makes you the happiest, since they all work together to make you happy, but there has to be one that if you didn’t have, you wouldn’t be complete.
5. If you are moving somewhere for a person, would they move somewhere for you? Are they going to continue to support your dreams once you do so?
6. Finally, when you think about yourself in a certain job in a certain place, do you imagine yourself being cooped up in your apartment all the time eating ice cream and sitting in sweat pants or can you envision yourself getting to know the area, getting involved in groups and activities, enjoying life and continuing to grow as a person?
I know this decision seems like the biggest one of your life, but it’s not. You can always move or get a new job or make new friends, but for now, you need some clarity. Something that makes sense when making this choice. You can sit and make pros and cons lists all day, but there’s a good chance you’ll end up subconsciously putting more pros on some lists and cons on others. Because deep down you probably know what the best choice is for you. Truly though, I challenge you to sit down and really think about these questions and how you would honestly answer. Maybe making this decision will be easier than you thought and no matter what, it will all work out in the wash.
C’est la vie,