I was talking to a friend of mine recently who is graduating from college. She is terrified because she does not know how to go about getting a job. She never had a job in high school and never had to work through college. She doesn't have a resume nor anything to put on it except for her education.
This is the way of it right now for a lot of people coming out of college. They were frightened going in to college, spent most of their college careers jumping through hoops, and finished the program frightened of leaving.
She has been regurgitating information and copying the path of so many that have come before her and now she is unable to create something for herself because she never put herself in the position to do so. She was too busy taking prerequisites and trying to keep her grade point average at a place she was told it should be in order to succeed after college.
It is easy to shift into autopilot in college. Though it is nothing like the highly structured high school curriculum, it is designed to keep you memorizing and imitating. There is so much social anxiety and performance anxiety that very often, it is easiest to follow the path of least resistance.
As the image to the left outlines, that is just a small part of what you can do in college.
The one thing that holds true in almost every area of life is that going into an experience scared will not yield as much as when you can put yourself in a position to go into it with curiosity and confidence. It is best to enter college with an idea of what you want out of it, or at the very least an idea that you will leave an entirely different individual than when you entered. "A job" is a great goal to have, but what about fulfillment? What about meaning? What will help you grow and succeed as a person and a professional after school?
There are a lot of skills that people learn, hard skills that enable them to do a job. But what about the intangibles? What about setting yourself apart from others who could do the same job with the same education? What can you do, what can you learn that will set you apart, make you unique? These are skills you can learn in college without going to classes. Here are five that will be invaluable throughout your entire career:
Those are the big five. You want to learn more? Great. Over the next five weeks I will be outlining how to get your soft skills up while you are going through college.
Until then, keep your eyes open and look for opportunity. You might be surprised where you will find it.
Do you know someone with a child on the precipice of college? Or someone with a child in college? Direct them to this website. Or share this post via email, fb or twitter. It might be the difference between success and failure. Though failure is not nearly as bad as it sounds.....
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