While it’s a no-brainer that after high school people decide to pursue further education or work, these days after graduating the future is as uncertain as rain in ukambani. Before, if I was to state my goals in my language, the steps in life would read, “After university, I will get a job, buy a car, build a house then get married…” Truth is, no one told me of the effort involved in between these phrases; which many consider the making of a successful person.
While these dreams seemed easy to achieve, the hard truth is that even going to college these days is indirectly proportional to being successful. Sure, I am not refuting that education is the power to read and write nor am I denying it is the key to success, but it is just a key. And you need more keys to get ahead in this fast-paced life. I do not mean Babu Owino style by taking seven degrees, although this is also an option. I mean being woke to realize the changing trends and realize what’s needed to complement your knowledge and skills.
Therefore, these are my 10 truths from what I have learnt over time and things no one will tell you after you graduate.
- No one will prepare you for adulthood
You know what they say about adulthood being a trap, there’s a little truth to this. Days and night pass while you are oscillating between euphoria (since you are young, wild and free), and despair because too many good/bad things are happening at once and disappointments are trickling in less or equal measures.
Each experience is new and no answer is the right answer. You will experience Deja Vu, ( well, the first time being in a movie), and situations that will take you through physical, emotional and spiritual roller coasters simultaneously. I mean sometimes you will be the main character in your drama, in other cases, you are the villain but also there will be times you will become an extra who no one will mind if they show up or not.
So just know when your relationships seem to be more of gone with the wind than fated to love you, you are not alone.
- You need to become a salesperson
You will learn that more than technical knowledge and skills, you need mettle and the zeal to market yourself subtly and in a way that will leave an impression on everyone you meet. So in short, you will have to become your own sales executive and package yourself as a brand. What’s in the package? A remix of your essence and personal style, that is amplified to influence and command attention.
- Use every opportunity to learn and improve yourself
While it may hurt because something bad happened and tomorrow doesn’t seem to be a new day, the best thing a bad experience will leave you with is a lesson, great judgment and a sense of gratitude. On that note, use internships to develop your social skills, network and learn who you want to become.
- People and relationships
You know, friends and family who make up your inner circle. Sometimes, somebody, you can call a friend in need will be a member of your family and sometimes it will be someone you never expected. What I learnt is that while sometimes you will feel like you cannot trust anyone, occasional kindness will save you down the road. 6 ways to get out of toxic relationships.
My two cents is that learning to walk with the right people will save you time more than walking with the best people.
- Learn to manage your finances
This is the hardest thing to implement especially if you get love eyes when you see beautiful things, it is a skill that will foster discipline and self-control. Read more on personal finance tips that will transform your life.
- Read, read, read
Remember when you said you don’t like reading, reconsider this attitude and you will have acquired another key to success. When they say develop a wealthy mindset, the first thing they insinuate is that “A mind needs books, like a sword needs a whetstone if it is to keep its edge.” Tyrion Lannister, Game of Thrones.
For those who love reading, your list (every reader keeps one) will define the milestones you have achieved and each time you reread you will always identify something you missed in your previous read. Don’t worry if you are slowly becoming a self-development book junkie. Just identify that each nugget of wisdom you get from these books will require implementation for you to see development. 6 Practical Tips To Help You Cultivate A Reading Habit
- Time management
So you are a reader. Guess what will become your favourite subject, Productivity. Each read will always be timely and most importantly you will come to learn the meaning behind time is money. 5 Time Management Hacks For Achieving Your Goals
When you watch a movie or series, no matter the genre your mind will be searching for life lessons and experiences rather than if it made the blockbuster. You will no longer see characters and fiction stories. Villains will become people you identify with and you might even hate movies with clean characters because they seem robotic. Not to mean you are now a baddie, what it means is that you are realizing the complexity of life issues and how no one size fits all. Speaking of life issues, you might develop an urge to help and get involved in social causes and save the world rather than contributing to its demise.
If you used to believe that one way to not give up your dreams is to keep sleeping, this is the time you will realise that sometimes you may want to sleep but your brain won’t stop talking. Night hours will be the time you are most active thinking about life and every stupid decision you’ve ever made. You might even ask yourself if you betrayed your country in your previous life to deserve what’s happening and by the time you reach a conclusion, it is already minutes to 3 am. This is now your official sleeping hour.
Atheist, pagan. Muslim, protestant, Buddhist, or Hindu, the bottom line is no one will tell you that you will need a system to believe in and redeem you when despair kicks in. As a Christian, I believe that if God is your co-pilot you need to change seats.
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