It’s been four years since I’ve left an academic setting. I’ve had full time jobs and been unemployed, I’ve lived at my house and in an apartment. I’ve gone to Italy, New York and California. I co-wrote a book, started a blog and met a ridiculous amount of people. I’ve planned trips that didn’t pan out, and I’m in the process of planning more.
If I could tell recently acquired self anything about the future beyond academia, it would be these things:
Pick something to do and do it. It doesn’t matter if you end up hating it, it matters that you’re doing something and giving it a chance to work out.
Go back to school if that’s what you really want. Go back if you don’t want to. Keep learning, the cost is worth it.
Cut up your credit cards. They’re only going to keep you behind where you want to be.
Make plans to travel more.
Your friends will always be there. Don’t feel the need to cling. They’re also going to move on. Don’t feel the need to cling and stay stagnent because they won’t.
There will be guys, you will do dumb things. Let your heart get broken. It will heal stronger and with more power. Let them in anyway.
You have sleep apnea. Get tested now. Use that stupid CPAP machine. Lose weight and get healthy so you don’t have to use it any more.
Start learning self discipline now. It is hard but it is necessary for everything.
Also, watch Conan O’Brien’s Dartmouth Speech. Or read it, at least.
What would you tell yourself, or me, four years ago? Or when you graduated?