I’ve been living in Ann Arbor for around 7 months now which means I’ve been working for almost half a year since I’ve graduated.
Updates? Well thats what I’m writing here now. Here are some thoughts about the post grad life working a corporate job in a brand new city and starting from scratch.
Adapting is Hard
Nothing is easy when you start your life over, especially when you are alone. You’re going doubt a lot about your decisions whether its about the choice to move or accept a job. Know that it’s compeletely normal and even tenured people at my work feel the same. When you’ve spent a significant portion of your years at home with family or in school with friends, leaving all of it will play with your emotions. Some evenings, you’ll want to catch up with people back home, but its not the same as calling them to meet up in person. The solution? Well, I honestly think 90% of it is giving yourself time to adjust. Take each day 1 by 1 and you’ll soon grow into the new lifestyle.
Setting a Routine is important
This is something I’m still struggling. For the first 4 months, I’ve consciously made an effort to leave and travel on weekends. It came to the point that I never had food in my fridge and came home to an empty bedroom with no decor. Since then, not only did work start getting busy, I’ve reminded myself that I’ve moved to Michigan for the year to live in, not to escape from. Although I want to occupy my weekends with adventure, I’ve come to appreciate the slow Sundays working from a local coffee shop, and going into the studio to work on my ceramics. Decorating my bedroom has significantly improved the overall experience I have when I’m alone in my apartment. I highly suggest it!
Managing your finance isn’t stressful if you are realistic
Everyone has a different financial situation. For me, I went from having financial aid covering most of my college expenses, to independently supporting my self once I started working. I took on expenses like rent, a new car, groceries, traveling, and personal payments . For those in a similar situation, its not really that daunting as long as you are smart. Cook on your own more or work or avoid paying for parking. One thing I focus on is adding at least 15% of my paycheck to my savings; Some in a longterm investment and some for current savings. As you may guess, I have savings specifically allocated for traveling and of course, one for emergencies. Once you have that taken out, minus living expenses, the rest is your dispoable income you can comfortably spend without feeling guilty.
Figuring out where you belong in a new social circle
As humans, we crave for social interactions regardless if we’re intro/extroverted. Sometimes I’m just looking for someone to sit down with me quietly reading a book. Maybe thats why I thoroughly enjoy going to coffee shops and sitting at a communal shared table with strangers. In a sense, they’re my friends who respect my personal space.
The fact is, work friends will be your first starting point but it is incredibly important to branch yourself out (I’m still figuring out how I’m approaching this). Or find friends who have the same interests as you so not everything you talk about is about work. Guess this’ll be my next challenge to tackle.
Reflection and Purpose
If I were to reflect my life since I graduated, I would say that the latter half of 2018 has been pretty incredible. It’s been a 360, but a great one. I’ve gotten the chance to see so many cities and have met incredible people. I did one of those 1 Sec videos and saw a complete shift of my life all together.
I’ve also reflected a lot about the purpose of this blog. To be honest, I’ve been caught up with how I am percieved in the public or how ‘popular’ the content will be. But I’ve decided that I write because I want to share my personal experiences and reassure that whatever I’m going through or feeling, is somewhat relateable (cue Ellen’s new comedy show) to my readers as well.
2019 is a start of a new adventure unlike anything I’ve been prepared for. I’m not confident to say I have it all figured out but who does?
(if you do, please reach out and lets talk :) )
I have a lot of exciting ideas for future blog posts, so lets continue the the streak of a positive mindset. What are some things that you are looking forward to? I would love to hear from you!
With that, I need to run some errand and stock up my empty fridge.