Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Tuesday ten: for the grads

So there are a few friends I know who graduated this past weekend. To say that I am proud of them would be an understatement. Graduating from college is a huge milestone and an accomplishment with a feeling that can't be beat. I remember the day I graduated from UGA so vividly, and it was four years ago. To say that I was happy would be barely scratching the surface of my emotions. I loved my time at UGA, and donning the cap and gown in May of 2010 was one of the happiest days of my life.

With Early Childhood Education friends after our dept. graduation, May 2010.

It's been four years since I donned my cap and gown and headed out into the "real world." Attending my sister's graduation this weekend was a walk down memory lane for me. There is so much that people don't tell you, and there is so much to learn. Here's my advice for all you recent grads (in no particular order):

1. Be honest.
-Honesty truly is the best policy. Even when it's hard. Just trust me. It will get you far as people notice that your commitment to truth sets you apart from others trying to get ahead.

2. Don't be afraid of failure.
-You're most likely not going to land your dream job right after graduation. Or, you could land what you think is your dream job and not enjoy it one iota. Don't be afraid to fall.

3. Do what you love.
-Can't stress this one enough. Yes, you have bills to pay and responsibilities to uphold. But don't sacrifice your quality of life for a job that you hate and that makes you miserable.

4. Keep the faith.
- Times are going to be hard. Your life will not be carefree and easy. Know that the Lord is for you, not against you.

5. Make a budget and stick to it.
-Um, yeah...still learning this one. The hard way. Do everything you can to not buy things on credit. Live below your means. And be generous to others and the least of these. No matter how "broke" you are, you're still much richer than much of the world.

6. Embrace a "YOLO" attitude.
- Sounds stupid and childish, but realize that life is short. We do not know how long we have. Be wise with your days and live them with reckless abandon, knowing that adventures are worth it.

7. Be grateful.
-Comparison truly is the thief of joy. Do not, I repeat, do not, waste your time comparing your life to others. Everyone's story is different. Period. Be grateful for yours and know that there is a purpose in every circumstance and situation.

8. Invest in people, not things.
- Things will rot. They will be destroyed and will not give us any lasting satisfaction. And while people can let us down, they are what is most important. People will be there for us and can surround us in time of need. Do what it takes to create and foster a community, and hold on to them for dear life.

9. Travel.
-Get out of your box. There is so much to be seen and discovered in this world. Go somewhere off the beaten path and learn how others do life and walk in this world.

10. Take your time.
-Know that while life is speeding by quickly, it is not an emergency. It is a gift. So savor it. Go slow, and be aware of the beauty before you. Don't be too hard on yourself, and gratefully take the second chances given to you.

“Imagine yourself as a living house. God comes in to rebuild that house. At first, perhaps, you can understand what He is doing. He is getting the drains right and stopping the leaks in the roof and so on; you knew that those jobs needed doing and so you are not surprised. But presently He starts knocking the house about in a way that hurts abominably and does not seem to make any sense. What on earth is He up to? The explanation is that He is building quite a different house from the one you thought of - throwing out a new wing here, putting on an extra floor there, running up towers, making courtyards. You thought you were being made into a decent little cottage: but He is building a palace. He intends to come and live in it Himself.”

-C.S. Lewis, Mere Christianity

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