At the time of the publishing of this blog I will have been out of graduate school for almost a month. While I am true proud of this accomplishment, there is something missing. I am starting to feel like I did when my first semester was going; alone. I know many people will say that being alone is a part of the process and that it is often necessary in order to achieve what you need to do, which to an extent I agree with. But its late at night when you want someone to talk to but no one is there. Someone who I could just rant to for a few hours. It’s hard to get a person, when you are often the person people come to. For some reason my mind goes back to the night when I was crying on the bed and could barely finish my assignment and all I could do was cry. I feel the same way post-graduation. I am starting to believe that there is a void that I have been trying to fill. However, what I have been trying to feel the void with are not the best for my energy levels. I was just happy to fill it with anyone who came my way but honestly quality is better than quantity. I will try to fill the void with great experiences and fun people. Sometimes while I talk to those new people, I may release those negative feelings. Not temporary people but people who care and love me for me. But not forget to enjoy my own company and dance the night away. That what I challenge you to do; dance the night away and know that the rough patch will soon pass.
Now that I have graduated from graduate school that question I have to ask is, “what is next”. I am at the stage where I am supposed to be getting a full-time job and trying to find that fancy apartment and living the cosmopolitan lifestyle. Then I would be getting ready to get married and have a family. But my question is why do I need to have that lifestyle. All of my life, I have been given this idea of how I should want my life. But what if I don’t want that vision. What if I just want to travel the world or move to Thailand.
What happens if I just want to start a business in Belize and eat a crazy meal in Australia. Do I even want to be married and in a committed relationship (I actually do because I hate dating) . But why am I expected to live my life according to what people want. I know that I need money to do what I need to do, but why is the only way of getting money is to hustle, pay off debt and barely live my life. I do not want to be 30 still paying off debt and not truly living my life. Honestly, I could pay off all my debt and die the second the collectors get the money. I have no desire to live the pay bills and keep it moving lifestyle. In college many students go with the motto of “no regrets”. Well for the rest of my life, my goal is to live with no regrets. I do not want to look back on my life and wish that I had gone to the Philippines. I want to know that I took a risk and even though in the moment of that risk I was terrified of the what ifs but, always know I can push myself when needed. Will the risk go well, who knows but I will forever know that I will never have the question of what if in the back of my mind. My advice to anyone who does not know what to do now is to take a chance and just do it. By taking action, you will learn, grow, and smile, which in life is crucial to making the best of each moment.
Dear anyone who is graduating from an educational institution,
First, I want to say congratulations on all your accomplishments. No matter where you are graduating from I am truly happy for all your achievements. Also, less not only congratulate only the college graduates but also the, people graduating from trade school. Sometimes we can forget to acknowledge all the different types of graduates not only the high school and college.
During graduation, it seems as though that in that moment everything we worked for is worth it. All the late nights, tears and procrastination were worth it to walk across the stage and to see the smiles on the ones we love faces. At that moment everything seems perfect. However, this letter is to address the days after we walk.
The days after we walk, we are still excited and glowing in joy. Many people expect you to have a plan and to know your next five steps. Honestly sometimes you do and sometimes you don’t. But soon after we start to realize that now it’s time to the “right thing”. Which for most people is getting a job or for some taking a trip through Europe. If you do not have a plan out of graduation, its ok. Take your time and begin where you need to begin. Never forget your worth. That does not mean that when you first graduate from college/ high school/ trade school that you will be earning six figures, very rarely does that happen. And that’s ok. Its ok to start from the bottom and make your way to the top. Sometimes if you change positions to get ahead or a higher pay that’s ok. Also applying to thing’s you think you may not be qualified for is ok as well. Sometimes we can short sell ourselves which can prevent opportunities, but always take advantage of all the opportunities that come your way. Even if they seem scary they may take you to an unexpected place.
Down the line, things may start to take longer than other people, however do not compare yourself. When you compare yourself, you lose your self. Losing yourself is the worst thing you can do because it takes a long time to re find yourself. Even though life is about uncovering who you are, you want to keep moving forward and not regress. Remember your time is your time and you will shine.
There will be times when you look at your bank account and you want to pass out, but know that money will come because your dream job/ business will begin to come when you walk the path. But still experience life via the free things and spending time with the ones you love. Time goes by so fast, make sure you take advantage of it.
Once again congratulations and I wish you nothing but the best. Remember to be in the moment and continue down your path. Also, don’t forget to smile.
Sending love and best wishes,
I know I have not written in a few weeks. However I was in the mist of finals and I honestly could not think of what to write. Finals to me are the worst time to attempt to do other things. Usually because I get stressed to the point that I want to sit in a corner and cry rather than confront my problems. Then it did not help that the fact that things were not going well at work. However I have learned that during the tough times, you have to learn to pull through until the end. I know that sounds cliché but that is honestly what has kept me sane over the past few weeks.
This blog entry is about coming to the realization that in one week I will have another degree. A master’s degree. Since its graduation season, I wish everyone who is graduating nothing but the best and i am hoping for great prosperity for you. For me I honestly do not know how to feel. This whole experience this semester has made me numb. Some may be confused about how someone who has achieved a major accomplishment would feel numb. Well let me explain. For the past semester I have been working two jobs, which is honestly the most tiring thing I have ever done. I do not have a post-graduation plans such as a “big girl” job nor any desire to continue my education at this point. Which honestly, I am not too worried about because I can easily work myself up to the ladder at my second job. Then i get this feeling of I should be doing what every other 23 is doing. Then i remember that i am not like every 23 year old. What I want to do and what I need to do will always differ from the next person, it may look similar.
My message to anyone who is about to graduate, first congratulations you did something many people would not consider doing. Second, don’t worry if you do not have a set plan upon graduation its OK never make people feel as though you are falling behind, everything will make sense in due time. Third and finally, never ever compare yourself to anybody. Comparison will get you in a dark place and will cause you to think that you are a bad person for not being further along in your journey, when you are where you need to be.
Please feel free to like and comment about a time you felt numb or when you when you were unsure of things in your life. But remember to always smile.
Being a student is already hard, but when you put in trying to do professional task such as job searching or attending conferees can add an extra bit of stress. That is my current week. I am getting closer to my final months of graduate school, which means the work load has increased since many of the deadlines are close together. (I wonder if teachers sit together to plan this out) I that begins this week and even though it would not typically interrupt my schedule since it starts on a Friday (all of my assignments are due on Friday by midnight), however when I travel I really do not like to do much of my normal day to day task. I honestly just want to go sightseeing and enjoy my time. Over a short period of time I have learned a series of tips and tricks that can potentially help those who are trying to seek professional development and being a student while working. So here are three ways to help those who are in the same boat as me.
1. Set aside time each day to do some school work: like many people when they travel, I enjoy sightseeing and experiencing new things while I am in a new town. I have learned after several failed attempts to make a to do list even when I am not in my home state. By having a to do list I can always place things that I want to do in that city on there, while still making sure I am completing all my assignments. I am typically a morning person when it comes to errands, so while traveling I will do my tourism stuff in the morning and then sit down to do some homework in the afternoon
2. Try to get the important task done before the main event: when going to conferences, the main event is the conference itself, so if we take the time to prepare our sleeves professionally and homework wise, when we return from to our rooms at the conclusion of conference day we can just relax and maybe do a few small things. Usually after a day of being a professional the last thing I want to do is write a term paper. I just want to reflect and maybe eat something So getting the major task done in advance can help ease the stress.
3. Focus: I know many people say that they can multi task, however when you give a specific task all your focus, you are able to get more done in a short amount of time. The less time you spend on a task, frees up your time to do things that you want to do. Always make sure you are always giving your all and that you are producing quality work.
Those are my tips for being a student and a professional at the same time. What are some of your professional student tips? Please feel free to like and subscribe. 😊
Also would you like to join a group of women who are going through the same task as you, please join the Facebook group Black Women in College! This group has great conversation about the graduate school, college and mental health while in school.
Photo from pixaby
Is normal even a thing? I know I have not posted in two weeks, however I am back and posting every Friday. I honestly missed posting however, life got in the way and I learned how to manage myself better before taking a trip and after.
So as many people know from my last entry I took a MUCH-needed adventure out the country. I went to Cuba and enjoyed myself. I was there to support and in return I was supported by those who helped me. But when I returned from this adventure, that’s when things got a bit off track. The day I returned to the U.S., my flight to my home state was canceled due to a nor’easter. I had never encountered a canceled flight. I went to airline customer service and found out if I could potentially get on the next flight out of Tampa. They told me the next flight I could get was literally 24 hours after the flight I was originally supposed to take to take that night. I accepted the flight and cried. I was crying because my plan was to arrive home on Wednesday, and have a day to recoup, reflect and begin my assignments that were due that Friday and still go to work the next day. I found a “cheap” hotel room and slept there for the night. Before I went to the hotel, I went to get some food. After I checked out, I went to the airport because I did not feel like traveling around Tampa (plus I just spent a lot of money on my trip). So I sat in the airport and began watching my lectures on my phone and taking notes. Some may find this weird however, I wanted to make the best of my time even though I could have been reading leisurely I knew I had to get some homework done.
After several hours, I finally checked into my flight and proceeded to TSA. I was honestly as excited as a kid in a candy store to make it as far as TSA. Then there was more waiting for the plan to arrive. After a 30-minute delay I finally was on my way home. I arrived home at 2am and went to work at 9 am. I did not go my second job that night. That night after I got home from work I started doing my school work and started reflecting. I finished all my assignments before the deadline on Friday and I slept. The rest of the weekend I tried to get back to normal
Honestly, I never understood when people said, “getting back to normal”. In graduate school or in life there is no normal day, at least for me there isn’t. In taking adventures there is no normal (at least for me). Each day we change, grow, and shift. It has been hard for me to get back to normal because “what is the normal for me” is the question. Since coming back from my adventure, my normal has been shifted to go with the flow more and just let things take their course. However, I also learned that sometimes you must take control back when things begin to rapidly take out of control. This week I am embracing the changes and being ok with not being “normal”. Plus, I believe we define what normal for us is. To me being normal is going each day and doing what I need to do and being when I need to be. With this definition, my day is constantly evolving and changing. This week I challenge you to define normal for you and please put in the comments below what normal for you is!
While going through your “normal day” be sure to smile because i smile can truly make a difference.
Photo from Geraly on Pixaby
Next week will be my “final” spring break. The reason why final is in quotation marks is because unless I decide to get another professional degree, then this is the last time I will have a week break from school work. So, for my final spring break I have decided to embark on an adventure that I believe will change my life in a positive way. I would encourage everyone who may have a vacation or a break coming up to take it and run with it. Like the guy in the hobbit. Taking a break is crucial to life and just our overall well- being. However, many people believe that by taking adventure that they need to go off to some foreign place, when they can just take a walk in a different area of their neighborhood or campus.
If you want to stay indoors and may not want to venture outside yet, sometimes exploring your mind and being by yourself can be helpful to your growth. I know it was for me. By taking an adventure in my mind I learned that I only create a dating profile when I was bored. Even taking an adventure in your studies can happen. For example, one night when I was working on a paper about the mortgage crisis and I started to research different avenues of my topic such as past mortgage rates past and present and have a lot of legislation that we only believed to affected one area of policy affected the housing crisis. I know somebody may believe that finding an adventure in school work to be nerdy but, I enjoyed it and still do.
For me I promised myself that each year I would explore a new country because it was a feeling of excitement I felt when I explored Morocco through study abroad and that same feeling comes to me when I went to new country. I always want to feel that feeling at least once a year because it serves as a restart button. I may have not changed, but I know that I can start over especially when life seems distress. Plus, adventures provide new perspectives that some may not consider.
My challenge for you is take an adventure, smile and just allow yourself to enjoy it.
Picture by Noel_ Buzza on pixaby