Graduating college is an exciting time, but like any transition period, it can bring a whirlwind of emotions and changes that you may not be properly prepared for. Call me the cliche, “emotional train wreck,” but I have gone through as many emotions enough to qualify me for the leading role in a Lifetime network film.
Although I’m still not sure exactly how to adjust to this newfound post-grad life, I can distinguish between the various stages I find myself enduring on a daily basis.
Stage 1: Excitement
The “Maybe this doing nothing with my life isn’t so bad after all!”
Wait, I don’t have any homework to do? Score! I don’t have to wake up early to make it to class? Heck yes! I have the whole day to do whatever I want? I mean, I could get used to this!
Stage 2: Denial
The typical, “Oh I’m just on Summer break! Life will go back to normal soon.”
The reality that I have now entered the real world and must figure out what I want to do with my future, who I am and where I’m going in life have no precedent. The only thing your mind focuses on is when to stop hitting “Watch Next Episode” on the daily Netflix marathons.
Stage 3: Panic Attack
The “Oh shit! My life is over!”
I’m going to live with my parents forever! I’m never going to be able to afford to live on my own. My life will not become like “The Hills.” I can’t even sign up for “The Bachelor.” What are they going to put as my occupation? “Lost millennial?” “College graduate with no sense of direction?” “This girl is a mess?”
Stage 4: Depression
The “I Give up and accept that my life is over.”
If you need me, I’m going stay hidden in the dark dungeon of my room, binge watching every show on Netflix avoiding contact with anyone.
Stage 5: Maturity
The “time to get my shit together and be an adult.”
Sometimes you have to be lost, in order to find yourself. While this transition is scary as Hell, you can’t let your fear define you. You may not get your dream job right away, but as long as you’re trying to live some kind of life, then there’s no reason to be disappointed in yourself. You will figure it out eventually and life isn’t supposed to be a race. Focus on enjoying everyday and what is meant to happen will in fact happen.