What Really Happens After You Graduate College


Receiving any sort of degree is a major accomplishment that warrants a lot of praise and uplifting well-wishes. This academic afterglow is a beautiful thing, but often starts declining once the leaves begin to change. These things really do start happening after college. After a few months in the “real world,” you may start to experience the following phenomena…

Loss Of Stamina

This symptom of adulthood can show itself rather suddenly and unexpectedly, or it may be a gradual occurrence that takes a few “I’m really tired, but sure I’ll meet you out for margaritas” responses to fully understand its severity. At this point in my life, even the thought out going out when I’m mildly sleepy seems as farfetched as my desire to be one of Beyonce’s background dancers. When the inevitable Friday night “What are you up to tonight? Want to go out?” text messages start to flow and you just aren’t feeling up to it, one of the most effective and genuinely honest responses is “I’m really sorry, I already have plans!” even if those plans are limited to your bed, Netflix, and a $2 bottle of wine from Trader Joe’s.

People Asking You Questions About Your Future

During college, when people would ask you what you wanted to do after school, it was okay to say that you didn’t know. But now people really actually want to know what your plans are for the future and are absolutely ready to hand you any advice (criticism) about what you should do with your life. This affliction can come from your closest loved ones or complete strangers. If you’re anything like me and are still figuring our what exactly you’re meant to be doing, you get used to the judgmental follow-up questions after a while and it almost becomes kind of a game to figure out the best answer. When a disconnected stranger, such as a cab driver, asks me what I went to school for, I’ve conditioned my response to “I was a bio major, and I’m going to med school to pursue pediatrics.” Although I am in no way ashamed of my actual degree (English), it’s a great way to get people to stop asking you questions about school and remind you that you’re not as young, wild, and free ask you used to be.

Lethal Hangovers

Remember those really cute times in college when you’d wake up after a night of drinking with a mild head or stomach ache, meet up with your friends for a cute brunch (mimosas/Bloody Marys included) to talk about how crazy the night’s events were, go home for a cute nap, wake up, get ready, and do it all over again? I do too, and I find no solace in those memories while I’m lying in my bed in dehydrated agony, trying to figure out how I got here from only three vodka sodas. Boozy brunches seem achievable only if you haven’t had more than one drink the night before. It might just be the natural order of things, but getting older will change your relationship with alcohol into somewhat of a tumultuous breakup. You’ll be left wondering how something that used to make you so happy now causes you so much pain, and you’ll be faced with the hard truth that there are just some things that a family-sized bag of jalapeno Cheetos just can’t cure any more.

You Stop Caring About Stuff That Doesn’t Really Matter

Focusing your attention on being jealous of other people’s success, obsessing over the guy or girl who never texted you back, or making fun of someone’s taste in music might have been really important a few years ago, but you’ve slowly come to realize that harboring such negativity towards trivial things is nothing but toxic. I cannot emphasize how little I’ve grown to care about what others think of my music preferences, especially because I am confident that no one, not even the most pretentious, crusty hipster can help herself from singing along when “Party in the USA” plays in public.You start to let go of unhelpful thoughts because they won’t get you any more friends or help you come up with a better embellishment when your family asks you how your job search is going. You’ve allowed more room for positive expansion and, hopefully, gained a sense of liberation.

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