Well, long time no see, friends! Apologies for being absent on my blog, but life has been far too busy to keep up with this like I’d really like to, so, sporadic posting it is! It’s been a few months now since I’ve posted my last blog so I guess this is kind of an update / things I’ve learned over the last few months where more change than I could imagine has happened! With that being said, let’s dive right on in…

Navigating Post-Grad Life
Well, this one is about as overwhelming (if not more) than anyone could imagine. The few weeks leading up to graduation flew by, graduation itself was great despite typical family members shitty attitudes (but honestly, I had prosecco at dinner so I didn’t have to think about it or deal with it so I was fine lol). While I thankfully had a job lined up for after graduation, it was only until likely mid-July or early August, so I knew I needed to find a full-time position doing SOMETHING, regardless if it had to do with what I studied or not, so I could pay my bills. Once the existential dread of that reality began settling in, I started to combat the anxious feelings by just applying to jobs and applying to jobs and applying to even more jobs. While I credit a lot of my sane-ness during this period of time to my Passion Planner and helping me plan all that work out, I cannot tell you how unsettling it feels not knowing what your next job is or where your next paycheck is coming from when you’ve got bills due in two weeks.

During my summer job I had a few interviews with places I had applied to in hopes of moving there once I was done with my first job. I talked about the job that scammed me in another blog post, so yeah that happened and wasted about three weeks of my life. Once that was done and over with, I had another interview with a staffing agency that has offices all over the East coast. Because I was weary of everything after this, I was cautious. I showed up and this building was probably the nicest building I had ever been in! The lobby was probably 10X bigger than the house I grew up in and then I had to go up to about the 28th? Or 32rd? floor for my interview. The lobby of the office overlooked the Baltimore and was all glass, so I knew this place legit. My interview took place in an office that overlooked the entire West half of Baltimore City and it was surreal. The interview went great, and the girl who interviewed me told me she would contact me if a position came across her desk she thought I would be a good fit for. Few weeks pass by, I go to the beach and the day I get back from the beach, two hours after getting home I got a phone call from the girl I interviewed with saying she has a part-time to hire position that would be great for me! I was really excited because it was a Social Media Coordinator position at a children’s museum in Baltimore, something fun and exactly what I studied and was looking for! The next day I had a phone interview set up with the museum, I called my representative from the company back after my interview and she had actually already spoken to them and wanted to bring me onto the team! And just like that I had a job paying like never before! Plus, after starting mid august, I’ve already been offered full-time from the museum!

While I realize I did get extremely lucky and I’m so thankful for the agency I found and interviewed with, it’s also possible this isn’t your path after graduation! I know some people want to further their studies and go onto getting their Masters and etc, which is awesome! Just not for me, though.

However, here are my main tips for getting through post-grad life without going insane:
– Set small daily goals. Even something tiny, like making your bed. If you’re jobless and searching, it’s easy to be tough on yourself about not feeling productive.

– Remember there are a billion other people out there doing the exact same right now. If you can’t find something you like, find something you can deal with for the time being to pay your bills and keep moving forward. Also, any job will help your resume – always just depends on your wording!

– Allow yourself to wallow in your own pity for one day but one day only. Get all your whining about having to do this and that done and over with in one day and move on afterwards.

– Do what you feel is the right path for yourself. Need extra time to finish school? Take it! Want to go for your Masters? Do it! Feel interested in something you didn’t even study? Start practicing it and building up a portfolio! Don’t feel compelled to do whatever your friends are doing and do whatever it is that will keep you motivated, positive and happy in the long run!

Post-Grad Mental Health / General Life
While I can say I have not been as nearly as anxious as I would typically be during a semester as compared to right now, I still have my off days (and everyone does!). However, I’ve tried to find some new and different hobbies since I no longer need to spend time doing homework once I get home from work now (the best feeling, honestly).

While I know it’s not really end of the year, but it’s getting colder outside and is making me think of 2019 already! With that being said, I know I definitely want to make a few changes in 2019 now that I’ve really accomplished all of the goals I had set for myself in 2018 which were to graduate, get a car and find a job I love!

Now I want to start working on myself, physically and mentally. I’m starting to really think about the kind of people I want to surround myself with, and the kind of people I don’t want to surround myself with, as I start this new chapter of my life and developing a deeper and more meaningful self confidence professionally and personally. I’ve realized I over-exhaust myself for people and I need to have more self respect and worth for myself and just put that energy into something productive and fulfilling!

With that being said, I’ve done a lot of thinking over the last few months since they’ve been full of some major change. However, I’m pretty happy and content with the person I am and am becoming, regardless of anything and anyone and that’s all that matters to me!

Well, I guess I should start this off by apologizing for sort of abandoning this blog for the last few months. However, my last semester of college was so busy, great and just overwhelming for the most part so I needed to focus more on myself, work, classwork and trying to stay sane. So, with that being said, I’ve graduated! After being out of school for almost three months now, I’ve started to realize things and change some habits because well, school is no more! (At least for me – I’m not interested in getting my Masters right now)

  1. Set Small Goals
    It’s going to be really easy to feel like you’re not really working towards something if you’ve graduated and don’t have a full time job within the field you just studied for the last four or five years. What I’ve begun to do is set a few slightly larger goals than my yearly ones, and break those down into smaller goals. For instance, I wanted to be hired full time somewhere by the end of August 2018. So, I’ve set myself weekly goals of how many jobs to apply to that certain week. I can keep track of who exactly I applied to and when, and if I heard any information back from them and when. It’s also important to not just dwell on work your entire time, and focus on yourself. I’ve tried to start being at least a little bit more active because the last time I exercised was probably in high school gym class. Because I’m not really working towards some kind of fitness goal or anything like that, I just keep track of whatever physical activity I did 5/7 days of the week whether it be walking the dogs, yoga, quick mini workout, run, etc. It’ll be satisfying to see your past progress and what you’ve accomplished so far!

  2. Pick Up New Hobbies / Occupy Yourself
    Another thing I’ve realized is that now….I don’t have homework. Once I get home from work for the day, I’m done. No reading, essay drafting, texting group members to finish their part already, nada. Nothing. I started watching The Office for the first time all the way through – finished that. I watched The Staircase, Safe, and Evil Genius (all on Netflix & soooo good!!!). Now I’m stuck, and had to think of something other than planning to occupy my time because there’s only so much you can do in a compact passion planner for a weekly spread! I’ve gone to the public library, in hopes of picking up reading once again. More recently, I stopped at Michael’s and grabbed a watercolor sketchbook that I plan to use as an art journal and take with me everywhere! While I’m not a good artist, it helps me when I’m anxious and worried about random things I most likely can’t control anyway. Start a workout routine, do something different each day you normally wouldn’t do, just try something different you’re not used to. Take a new way home, even. I finally stopped at this little corner farmer market just down the street from me and it’s become my new favorite place! Cucumber for 75 cents, plants, flowers and fresh herbs in the pots, a super cute fat cat that’s always there, fresh blueberries and black raspberries, asparagus – everything! And it’s all so cheap and I know it’s supporting that local farmer / family! I have driven by this place for years now and never stopped, until one day I did and tried something new!

  3. Trust Your Gut

Something I’ve always lived by and taken seriously is my gut feeling. Time and time again I’ve proven myself right/wrong because I did/didn’t listen to my gut feeling. Well, once again I should have listened to that gut feeling. As I’m sure some of you saw, I was recently hired for a full-time position with what I thought was an advertising/promotional firm for big fortune 500 companies. They described the position to me as a training program for a few months, where I would then be promoted along the way, eventually reaching an Account Manager role, making 70-$80,000 a year. They travel frequently across the country; send team members to the Dominican Republic and meet up for team meetings / building pretty frequently. Seems allllmost too good to be true, right? Yeah. Well. It was.

Long story short: this company completely and 100% scammed me from the beginning. I’m sure you’ve heard stories about places that just want to find fresh college grads who are desperate, looking for work after graduation and are ready to commit everything they have to a job, especially one that has perks like this mentioned! I had a weird feeling about this place since my very first interview at their main office. I wasn’t sure why, but I just did. And I had kept telling my boyfriend, and my mom, that I just had an off feeling about the place for some reason but I was going to keep going through with it since it was a foot in the door somewhere.

So I go to interview number two, and was told about the decent salary after all the training, and the ‘president’ (this is in quotes because you’ll see later…oh it gets juicy y’all so keep reading!) who interviewed me the first time, met me again at a Sam’s Club (huge wholesaler like Bj’s, Costco, etc.) for the next phase of the interview. All is going normal and she walking me through the store, until we reach a set up of a girl handing out samples of this like, vitamin / fruit protein juice. All I remember was that it was your entire serving of fruit for the day in like one tablespoon of this protein juice or something. Whatever. Anyway, we get there and she’s telling me about the product, and like cool! I thought this was something we’d be doing PROMOTIONS and ADVERTISING for. K, keep that in mind. She walks me back up front and we sit down and finish the interview. She says they’ll call me tomorrow (that day being a Wednesday) and let me know if I got an offer or not. Awesome.

Fast forward and they call me saying I was one of six people out of 60 people interviewed they brought back. (I’ve never been told this before after an interview, why share the number of applicants? Idk). They offer me a position as a junior account executive and I accepted. They ask me to go to Orientation the next day, and I agree. ‘Orientation’ ended up me back talking to the ‘president’ for 15 minutes and signing some paperwork – electronically. This was when I found out I was going to be making minimum wage plus only commission. I wasn’t comfortable with this and knew this wasn’t what I was looking for, but it got worse. I still couldn’t really tell what I would be doing. I called my mom about the whole minimum wage plus commission and that’s when we both started being very weary. They have me start work that following Tuesday, so earlier this week.

I got a call on Monday from a random out of state number and randomly decided to answer. This guy answered, asked for me and said he was with the company and wanted me to meet him at a Chick-Fil-A on the corner to go over how m first day would go. Huge red flag. My boyfriend, his mom and my mom were all basically creeped out, as was I. If he was with the firm, why couldn’t we do this in the office or office lobby? (It was a huge office building, tons of space…). So, anyway, I go there. This guy was still not up front about everything and basically once I got in the office in our ‘meeting’ that’s when I realized what I had REALLY signed up for.

We were selling random products at Sam’s Club. I would be making minimum wage, and my paycheck would basically only be based off of what I sold. And if I was working with someone, my commission was split with them. I was taught ‘the five steps to a conversation’ my first 20 minutes. This was a straight up sales position. Absolutely nothing marketing or advertising related. I was so mad that I wasted my time with this place, and that they lied and scammed me.

However, I was glad I caught the ‘president’’s name before I left. Oh, I quit yesterday morning (happy fourth of july!!!!) by the way. Anyway, I got her full name and googled it, and look at the first link that came up! My ‘president’ got cited for unethical business practices! If you read the entire report from ripoff report, it gives you every single detail as to what I just went through the last four weeks of my life. I wouldn’t even be making GAS MONEY back because this place is so far from home!

I’m sharing this because I want everyone to know they’re OUT THERE and are looking for fresh and excited college grads! Don’t get your time wasted like I did, and just keep on applying to jobs. If you are going through the interview process, be very observant of the surroundings, how people are acting, everything! Another odd thing I noticed was how the receptionist was ALWAYS calling people for interviews whenever I was in the office. And my meeting was about an hour and a half on Tuesday. Another huge red flag!

But anyway, be weary, friends! I’ve been down in the dumps recently since I feel so dumb and wasted my time with something when I should have listened to my gut feeling in the first place! That being said, when you know you’re in the right workplace, you know immediately. Like my internship, which I absolutely adored! Anyway, hope everyone enjoyed my little mishap story and had a good fourth! Cheers!

Internships.

They’re something you hear about from everyone while in college and they can be a really overwhelming, stressful and scary thing to think about. However, I firmly believe that the more hands-on or real-world experience someone has in their field before graduation, the more likely they are to be leaving school with a job lined up, or with lots of professional connections!

Since the idea of internships can be so nerve-racking, I think it’s also important to intern at a place you feel comfortable in, as well as motivated! Whether you’re working for free or not, having an internship at a place you’re excited to go to, will make your experience that much more beneficial!

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