ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel
  • »
  • Sports and Recreation»
  • Team Sports

How To Live (A Good Life) After College

Updated on April 4, 2012

So in keeping with my dedication to write one hub a week, I'm addressing a common train of thought among educated twenty-somethings. Now we all know higher-education is all kinds of greatness -- The great equalizer, the great wallet drainer, the great transition period, etc. But I think the current generation, my generation, has taken things a little too far. Now don't get me wrong. I am completely in favor of gaining new skills, new insight, or pursuing your academic passions (even if it does involve a little improv). Yet, the whole-college experience has become somewhat of a security blanket; a warm, fuzzy security blanket made out of Solo Cups and pizza boxes. (And trust me, you don't want to know why it's "fuzzy.")

Problem is, you eventually have to leave. You have to transition to that new place called adulthood. For all you early birds who are already there, this article ain't for you. This is for the guy or gal feeling absolutely confused about the "real world" and its insanity.

"Braaaaains......are an essential part of our neuroscience master's dissertation."
"Braaaaains......are an essential part of our neuroscience master's dissertation." | Source

Come, Join Us.....

Having left higher education four years ago; one of the weirdest things I find is how much social pressure there is for me to return. I mean, at the core, there is no reasons for me to do so:

1.) I paid off my student loans in full.

2.) I'm working for a strong steady salary.

3.) I have opportunities for advancement.

4.) I have quite a few entreprenuerial ideas and aspirations that I actively work toward.

And yet, they (mostly friends pursuing higher degrees) still ask. When are you going back to school? Are you going to get your MBA, your JD, your [Insert Random Acronym Here]. Do you know where you want to go? Have you started applications yet? Join Us...Join Us....Braaains.

Assuming my friends and acquaintances are not actually zombies; I can't quite understand the incessant push for me to re-embrace academia. Or maybe there is something more sinister in the works.

The Beautiful University of Washington Campus.
The Beautiful University of Washington Campus.

The Problem

"Man I promise, she's so self conscious
She has no idea what she's doing in college
That major that she majored in don't make no money
But she won't drop out, her parents will look at her funny
Now, tell me that ain't insecurrre
The concept of school seems so securrre
Sophmore three yearrrs aint picked a careerrr
She like fuck it, I'll just stay down herre and do hair"

-Kanye West, feat Syleena Johnson -- All Falls Down

Ahhh, when you can use rap lyrics to get your point across; you know you've done something right. But back to my point. Universities, specifically the room and board - three meals a day - toga party at night variety, are specifically designed to be secure, comfortable and appealing. I mean, how would they attract students otherwise.....credentials, alumni success rates....please, give me a break. What students are looking for is this. That's right, loft style dorms and resort style pools.

When I was in this very same college setting, I embraced all the creature comforts of this security blanket. The active/close-quarters social life and the occasional study breaks made me feel at ease. So what if I had no idea what to do after college? So what if the economy's in the dumps? As long as I follow my carefully laid out course schedule and go practice with my a cappella group every Sunday things should work out for the best. Shouldn't they?

Time To Wake Up!

As soon as a week after my graduation ceremony, I felt the cold, icy chill of the real world. Gone was my personal study space; gone were my navy blue crocs. Tears welled up in my eyes as I felt myself fall further into the abyss of....well......reality. Job applications and interviews were plentiful; but then again course so were the rejections. There was frustration, pain and heartache but you know what, I made it through.

And I am better off for it. To live life without a clear schedule or a clear safety net; That Is Life. To create your own goals and then move heaven and earth to accomplish them, That Is Life. Surprising failures and even more surprising rewards; that's what makes each moment so worthwhile. If higher-education will only serve as a disincentive to joining the real-world mosh pit....what's the point. Almost makes me want to embrace online degrees......almost.

Lessons Gleaned From This Experience

1.) Slowly and steadily incorporate more independent behavior into your daily habits. This will go a long way.

2.) Remember that commencement speaker who spoke about "carpe diem" and all that crap. He was right. Focus more on setting and accomplishing your own personal and professional goals. You will slowly become more and more effective and your influence will grow.

3.) Unless you truly love school and never, ever want to leave. Avoid becoming like these perpetual students

  • Benjamin Bolger -- 11 degrees, 10 masters and 1 doctorate
  • Michael Nicholson -- 27 degress, among which include 19 masters and one doctorate.
  • John A "Johnny" Lechner -- Currently residing 17 years on the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater Campus.

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • Justin Muir profile image
      Author

      Justin Muir 6 years ago from New York

      Thanks Chasing Riley. I'm glad to hear that it's not just my generation. Although the economy probably does make things worse.

    • Chasing Riley profile image

      Chasing Riley 6 years ago from Los Angeles

      Excellent hub! Even in my generation, everyone wanted to stay in or go back to school. It's an expensive safety net. I like your lessons gleaned and your overall writing style. Nice job. Voted up!

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: "https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr"

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)