3 steps for Navigating Post Grad Life

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Post by Melissa Jefferson

So, you’re past the cap and gown, and the copious amounts of “Congrats Grad”. You may have just received your copy of one of the most expensive pieces of paper you’ve had to earn in your entire life. Now what?

For many, after the “ooo’s and ah’s” have settled, the harsh reality of the “real world” have set in and the sudden scramble for a job begins. I wouldn’t call myself a “seasoned” veteran, but as I step into my third season of adulthood, as I like to call it, I feel I am qualified in speaking to those who are fresh out of college.

If you get nothing else from this message, let’s settle your worries with this one statement: where you start won’t always be where you finish. Let that be an encouragement to those of you who feel they are already behind because they haven’t found a job yet, or to those of you who thought you found your “dream job”, but it wasn’t what you expected.

1.     Don’t sweat the small stuff

Enjoy what you have rather than desiring what you don’t have. Just dreaming about nice things is meaningless—like chasing the wind. Everything has already been decided. It was known long ago what each person would be. So, there’s no use arguing with God about your destiny.
— Ecclesiastes 6:9-10

I would’ve saved myself a lot of time and stress if I had fully stepped into and believed that what God has for me no one can take away. I rushed into my first job post-grad out of fear of failure. Or better yet, being seen as a failure. Even though it had nothing to do with what I got a degree in or what I would be in the future, or so I thought. What God has for you will ALWAYS be for you. No matter what. If it didn’t work out, then it wasn’t for you. Also, don’t limit yourself. We serve a limitless God who can bring anything to fruition!

2.     Focus on staying present

It can be easy to drift off into dream land, especially when you are comparing your journey with everyone you see. You think about how much more money you could be making if you did this or that, or where you would be if you had just gone to grad school, etc.

Time for another dose of reality. You will never be them, and they will never be you. That’s your superpower! You are the most natural version of you. You are the cheap version of “them”. Focus on the present moment because your future has already been confirmed.  

Instead of drifting off to dream land at your current job, see where you can improve things. Are you giving it your all? Could you be better in a particular area? Take advantage of every current opportunity you are being given because it will be applied in the future. Learn to be a good steward of your time in the present, so when God is ready to move you, you will be prepared to take on the next level.

3.     Let God be your source.

In a world that screams money, position and power should be your goal; Let God be your source.

Yet true godliness with contentment is itself great wealth.
— 1 Timothy 6:6

Want to know the secret to contentment? A grateful heart. When I don’t “feel” happy in my current season and the whole world seems to be crashing in around me, I look to God to thank him for all the things that I do have.

Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need and thank Him for all He has done. Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus.
— Philippians 4:6-7

I may not have a million dollars in my bank account, but I have life. I have a healthy body, a healthy mind and the ability to move around as I want to and that’s enough for today. There is beauty in each and every season; yes, even the bad ones. On my roughest days, I find that God knows just what to do to show me that He has not left me. On my best days, I can rejoice even louder knowing that God has seen me through the storm of life yet again. 

As you navigate your post grad season, I want to remind you that God is with you. He will never leave you or forsake you. Things will not go as you planned, but once you surrender your plans and your time table for God’s, prepare for Him to blow your mind. Doors you never even thought of will suddenly swing open, and at just the right time you will be stepping in tune with your purpose and calling.

Keep fighting the good fight and renew your mind daily in God’s word. Surround yourself with godly community who can speak life into your situation and vice versa. You’ve worked hard to achieve your education, but the learning doesn’t end after graduation. Congrats Grad!