In our last blog post, we talked about transitioning from high school to college. In this post, we’ll talk about transitioning out of college.

Transitioning from college to life-after-college can be difficult. You might not land your dream job right away, student loans will soon become due, and money might be tight. The future is unpredictable, and it’s normal to feel like you have no idea what you’re doing.

Trying to figure out life after college can bring on anxiety, depression, feelings of self-doubt, and stress. According to The American Psychological Association’s “Stress In America survey,” millennials are the country’s most-stressed generation.

In an effort to help you remain calm and manage the stress that comes along with this transition, we compiled a list to help you mindfully approach the unknown and prep yourself to handle this transition:

Create a routine. In college, you might have had no problem staying up until three a.m. because you didn’t have to be up for class until noon. However, once you enter the real world, staying up that late and then getting up early for work will quickly take its toll on you. Try to go to bed at a decent hour so you will be refreshed for work. Loosely map out your day and week (hours you’ll work, chores, exercise, and finally down time) so you’ll have time for everything.

Manage your finances. Set expenses like rent and student loans can lead to heavy debt if you’re not financially responsible. Create a financial journal to track your monthly expenses and budget your personal expenditures like gym memberships, lunch dates, and happy hours.

Treat savings like a cost and set aside money each month. If you run into any unforeseen emergencies, you’ll have a fund to help with rent and other costs.

Don’t be afraid to ask your parents, a friend, or your personal banker for help.

Taking the job that isn’t your dream job. Chances are, you might have to settle for a job in order to pay your bills. That’s okay. Don’t panic if your first job after graduation doesn’t fit your plan. Many college graduates change jobs after their first year out.

Statistics show that students graduating from college today will change careers multiple times over the course of their working life. It’s okay if your first job after college is just to pay the bills. Plan how you can make the transition to something better down the road. Keep track of your accomplishments and be aware of the transferable skills you develop in your early jobs that you can apply to better jobs in the future.

Find your support system. When you become anxious or concerned about your future, have someone you can talk to. It’s possible that your college friends are feeling the same way, so lean on each other. Get advice from friends, family, and your counselor.

If you’d like to set up a time to meet up with Reka, you can contact her by phone at 402-881-8125, by email at, or via Twitter or Facebook.

photo credit: Sunday Picnic via photopin (license)