Careers Advice Blog

Coping with summer graduation blues

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University has been the best years of your life, right? The independence, the parties, the new friends, the top class studying, the free money… the list goes on. So graduating, and saying goodbye to all of this, can be really tough.

You suddenly find yourself having gone from a fun- and friend-filled lifestyle in your favourite city ever to empty days sitting on your parents’ sofa eating cereal all day long. It’s something of a downer. Surviving the first summer is hard, so here are some tips on how to deal with the blues.

Job hunt

Unless you’re one of the lucky few who have managed to fall easily into work post-graduation, you’re going to need to keep yourself busy. Until the day comes when you find a job (trust me, it will happen!), make finding a job into your job. Get up at a sensible time, get dressed, and start scouring the internet for leads. Before you know it whole weeks will have gone by and you won’t have noticed because you’ve been busy- and you’re also a lot closer to landing a job!

Settle in at home

It’s all too easy to determinedly keep all your things in the suitcases they came home in, so you don’t have to admit that you’re never going back. But really, this is only going to make it worse when you finally run out of pants and are forced to dig into the baggage. Make yourself at home again- and what’s more, go that step further. If you’re the only one at home all day, your parents will probably appreciate it if you pull your weight with the cooking and cleaning (you might get out of paying rent this way too!). Feeling at home when your heart is in another city is tricky, but it’ll make you happier long-term.

Make plans

If you have something, anything, to look forward to, it’ll help you to stop sitting their thinking about how great the past was. If you can afford it, a holiday with your uni mates is a really great way of celebrating the hard work of the last few years, as well as putting something in your rather empty-looking calendar. Make dates to see your friends and family, and it’ll help you put things in your life to make sure you keep track of what day it is. Your summer won’t be a barren few months of unemployment, but instead a time for you to use to your advantage.

Look on the bright side

Remember the hymn you used to sing in primary school that went “One more step along the world I go…”? Look upon graduation as a step along the world. Graduating is a change in your life that seems daunting and sad at the time, but in reality, you’ve got to move on with your life. You can’t stay 21 forever. Remember when you were 11 and you thought leaving primary school was the worst thing ever? There were so many more things to come. Graduation might be the end of one (really, really great) adventure, but who knows what’s next? Instead of looking at it as a negative thing, try seeing graduating as opening a door to all the things that can happen for you now. Yes, it’s scary, but really, it’s exciting too. The world really is your oyster.

How did you cope with summer graduation blues? Tell us in the comments below.

Photo: Jeremy Jenum / Flickr

Fran LoweCoping with summer graduation blues

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