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Congratulations, you made it through school and you finally got that cap and gown! School itself had the social, academic, emotional pressures, but the transition period can be just as unnerving, and that’s completely okay. As a new graduate myself, I was more terrified to walk across the stage for fear of what the future held. Am I ready for this new phase of “adulting” I have heard so much about? I wanted to share a few things that helped ease into my transition period and minimize stress. My mental health was all the better for it!

Talk to Career Advisors or Counsellors.

Career advisors and counsellors are a great resource to help understand how the workforce, or post-secondary school, will be, and can definitely give you some good tips and tricks to succeed. Not only that, but if you’re looking for a new job, don’t be afraid to bring a resume or cover letter to them for them to review! (There are some tips on building these here) Their insights into career building may be able to help you create more effective documents to help you find that dream job. You can also explore and take quizzes about which career might be the best fit for you on the WorkBC Career Compass

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Talk to Friends and Family.

To be frank, I always hated the question “so what’s next for you after graduation?” but this is an important conversation to have. What better way to bring up your concerns for the future than with the people who are going through the same thing? Some people may have it figured out, and some people might not, and that’s okay! Bouncing off ideas on people who know you best can help you figure out how you want to move forward. You can check out some Tips for Talking With Someone to see how to start off the conversation.

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It’s okay to explore.

There are so many options these days for what to do after graduation that it may be hard to think about what might be best for you. More education? And if you choose that, which school? Trades or academia? Do I want to go straight into work? Many programs do offer a first year explorations program for people who want to go to school and are worried about just this very issue. The government often has grants and loan programs for you open to be able to get the skills to explore different workplaces as well. Another way to check out other fields would be taking on an internship or volunteering opportunities in your local area. So it’s okay to explore out of your comfort zone if you think it might be the path for you.

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Don’t be afraid to take a break.

Just as I say there are many options, one very important option that people seem to forget is that it’s okay to give yourself a break. You did it! You made it through school! Take some time to enjoy this new chapter of your life before thinking of “adulting” away!

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These are just some reminders I tell myself and friends when we have the dreaded “what’s next after graduation” talk. There are different ways to approach transition period and nobody will take the same exact path, so don’t stress if the way you do things is different from everyone else. It’s always important to put your own health and well-being first. Con-grad-ulations!

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