As the semester goes by, I find myself in a lot of uncertainty. James Madison University and Harrisonburg have been my home for the last 4.5 years, and it is starting to come to an end. Seeing my class graduate in the spring taught me a lot of things. First and foremost, I felt left out. I should have graduated with them; it was time for me to graduate. However, because of COVID-19 and an extra year of athletic eligibility, I decided to stay for an extra semester. I did not think that was going to be hard on me, but it has been. It is like an era that is over that I am still finding myself in. Secondly, although I did not go through it, I saw all my classmates going through post-graduation stress and everything that comes with it. What are you going to do? Where are you going to live? What job are you going to get? There is a lot of uncertainty for a lot of students when they graduate, and I learned a lot from seeing all my classmates going through that before me.
Everything is not going to turn out exactly how you want it to be. The sooner you realize that the better the process of starting your adult life is going to be. You may not be working where you thought you were going to right after graduation, and that is okay. You may have to move across the country to work for a company that you want, and that is okay. An open mind is going to help you a lot after graduation. I still do not know if I want to start working, try to become a professional soccer player, or pursue a master’s degree, and that is okay.
Get into Routines
I have always believed in routines; it is such an important part of your everyday life. If you find yourself struggling to find jobs, do not waste your day sleeping. Get up at a reasonable time and get into the routines you would have if you were working a 9-5 job. That is going to be essential. You are going to feel much better about yourself and I promise you that it will help you find a job for example.
Maintain Your Relationships
Maintaining relationships is something that I have struggled with from time to time. Since I have been at JMU, I have not done the best job of keeping up with my friends at home in Sweden. We all get so caught up in our everyday lives that we forget about our closest friends. This applies to post graduation life as well. You are going into a new life that will be tough from time to time and you are going to want to have your friends with you during those times. If you find yourself thinking about a friend, give them a call, you will not regret it.
Post graduation stress is normal. Almost every student goes through it. You feel the pressure that everything needs to be perfect, however that is not the case. Everything is not going to be perfect, and that is okay. We are still young, and we are going to make millions of mistakes in our lifetime. My tips for a better approach to post graduation stress are to be open-minded, get into routines, and maintain your relationships. That is going to help you a long way, I promise you that.