It’s a few days post-college graduation and unsurprisingly, I’m feeling a bit nostalgic. Similarly to any graduate at this point in time, I’ve found myself reflecting about all that I’ve learned over the past fours years. Between textbooks, power points, lectures and office hours, I have been exposed to plenty of information.
I’ve certainly learned a great deal from my teachers and classes, but there was an abundance of wisdom that was discovered simply by being outside of a classroom; it came from pure trial and error.
There have definitely been highs and lows but more importantly, there have been many lessons. The lessons I have learned are ones that I could have never learned from a professor. There are some things in life that you can only learn by experiencing them first-hand.
1.You’re going to lose best friends
People will walk in and out of you life, sometimes with good reason and sometimes, for no reason at all. If they walk out, let them keep walking. The people you want are the ones who stick around when the going gets rough.
2.You’re going to screw up
It’s inevitable in order to learn. No one successful has gotten there by being perfect their whole life.
3. Your hangovers are going to get significantly more painful the day after your 21st birthday
Ow – nuff’ said.
4. What it’s like to fall in love
You don’t know until you KNOW.
5. Traveling will open your eyes
Not taking advantage of studying abroad is doing a disservice to yourself. You will not only learn how to budget your money, you’ll also gain a new found sense of independence all in one semester.
6. You need to get rid of the people in your life who make you feel bad for being who you are.
They are of no use to you. Surround yourself with company that celebrates and supports who you are.
7. Collaborating is a better use of time than JUST competing
You can be supportive of others in your field while still being independently successful. Jealously has rarely created anything memorable or valuable.
8. Your GPA does not define your intelligence
Numbers are only ONE way of measuring something.
9. Sometimes you have to kiss some ass to get what you want
It’s just the facts of life, and if it gets you to where you want to be then it’s worth it.
10. A glass of wine can really get your creative juices flowing
It’s just true.
11. How to defend/handle yourself against other people’s hateful words
Sexism, racism, anti-Semitism etc. are still prevalent and no one prepares you for those situations or how to ignore other people’s ugly words. If you have the unfortunate experience to encounter this, you will learn that no matter how strong you are, other people’s (ignorant) words will still hurt.
You’ll have to face this head on in your own way, but nonetheless, you will become stronger and increasingly proud of who you are.
12. Kill your enemies with kindness
Being kind is not only easier, it will inevitably get you much farther than being mean. No one has ever gotten arrested for being kind, but people get arrested all the time for lying, hiding and cheating in the business world.
While I am incredibly grateful to have received an education and degree, some of the things I’ve learned without a teacher are going to be more beneficial to me in the work place and my adult life than any class has ever been.