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Thursday Thoughts from a Young Professional

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It is almost the end of the work week and I finally feel like I can see the light at the end of the tunnel.  This past week I have learned:

  • I am extremely thankful for professors that let the class out early.
  • You can do more than you think during a small 1-hour lunch break.  I successfully drove to school, searched desperately for parking, turned in an add-slip for a summer class, drove to Walmart to buy lunch, called my mom, and ate lunch with 10 minutes to spare!
  • I still love the blue-bagged Doritos.
  • The “=+” in an excel formula means NOTHING but people still continue to use it.
  • I have a lot more “inappropriate” Facebook photos than I thought.  The purging has been a long drawn out process.
  • I think I’m incredibly busy with school and work full time, but I can’t even imagine tacking on children to the mix.  There are people I have class with that work, go to school, AND have kids at home.  I learned that I am thankful to not have kids.
  • The beautiful weather outside really does make you happier in a I-don’t-mind-working-until-6-because-it’s-still-light-at-8pm kind of way.
  • Crossfit really will be the death of me one day.

Happy Thursday, everyone!  I am SO THANKFUL tomorrow is Friday.  It sure has been a long week, hasn’t it?

Misconception: College Graduates Make 6 Figures

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Upon entering college, I was promised fame and fortune after graduation.

Okay, maybe not fame.

But I truly believed I would make a fortune.  I knew that my Business degree wasn’t enough to get me to that 6-figure salary we all dream about, which is why I was dedicated to getting my Masters before even completing my Freshman year as an undergraduate.

I remember my step-dad telling me:

“You have to get your Masters.  When you get your Masters, you’ll be making 6-figures right out of school.”

HECK YES!  6-figures for having no experience and for just attending school?  Easiest money I’d ever make.

I QUICKLY realized this is far from reality.  Not only is landing a 6-figure gig post-college unrealistic, but during this economic downturn landing ANY gig after college can be difficult.

Another thing I learned:  You want to start at the bottom.  I think by beginning at the bottom, I learned so much about what kind of employee and co-worker I am.  I have learned that becoming a leader will be much more rewarding after I have put in my time and effort.  When I become a leader, I will be able to relate to my staff – I will have been in their shoes.  I will be proud of climbing the ladder and earning my position based on my qualifications, not what a piece of paper dictates.

A 6-figure salary does not come from your degree, but rather the effort you apply after you’ve received your degree.

The end.

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Where did my social life go?

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One thing that I struggle with is prioritizing my time, and I have learned that time prioritization is key to surviving a full time work week + MBA classes.

Another thing that I have learned is that my social life needs to take a back seat during this stage of my life.  My friends say on a consistent basis, “I hate that you’re in school!” after I say something along the lines of, “I can’t, I have class” or “I have a test I need to study for” etc etc.

I suppose if I learn to prioritize my time, I may be able to have my cake and eat it too.  Below are 4 things that I have identified could help me find my social life:

  1. Don’t procrastinate – I always procrastinate my homework assignments and tend to cancel plans occasionally because “My homework isn’t done yet.”  If I don’t procrastinate, I’m sure my stress level would decrease and my social life could potentially increase!
  2. Don’t skip the gym – I tend to skip the gym because the last thing I want to do after work on a day I don’t have class is go to the gym.  No – I want to go home, throw on some pajamas, and be in bed by 8:30pm.  Truth is, if I didn’t cancel my gym plans, I’d probably sleep better and not have to enforce an 8:30-9:00 bed time.  If I sleep better, I won’t be spending all of my spare time trying to catch up on rest – I’d be able to socialize 🙂
  3. Make plans, and stick to them – When I make plans with my friends, I always insert my “tentative” plug-in just in case I have to cancel.  “Okay, let’s tentatively plan for Wednesday and I’ll let you know if I need to move it.”  Typically – I move the date.  Bad bad bad!  My friends all completely understand, but this still makes me feel like a bad friend.  I need to make plans, and have the intentions to stick to them.
  4. Plan out the week – I’m known for being over “anal” about making plans.  I don’t like “play it by ear” plans – I need concrete details and specifics!  So it baffles me why I don’t plan my week ahead of time.  By doing this, I can efficiently allocate my time to work, then school, then friends and family.  I like it.

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