It’s a real thing, so let me tell you what it’s really like.
Woooooooow. It’s been a while. I kind of forgot that writing is one of my hobbies. Life’s been moving at a million miles an hour recently which means the blog has been neglected BUT NO MORE… well less.
I read a very interesting BBC article the other day about life after university and it really summed it up perfectly. There are 3 major jumps we make in our educational life. Primary to secondary, secondary to college/6th form and then college/6th form to university. As much as these educational institutions like to think they prepare you for the next step they don’t really. You’re kind of left to just figure it out as you go. But you have a bunch of people who you probably know in the same boat so it ain’t as bad. BUT NO ONE ABSOLUTELY NO ONE can quite prepare you for the transition from uni into the real world, it’s quite shocking.
While you’re at uni you kind of forget that the degree you’re working towards is to help your chances of getting a decent job in the real world. Clouded by the incessant partying and all nighters life is just perfect. You’re basically getting free money from the government (if you’re poor) and you get to live with a bunch of your mates. You’re probably only in university twice a week and the only thing you have to worry about is the next series you’re going to watch on Netflix. And this is just blissful ignorance. Because really, why should you think about life after university. Especially in first and second year because you know there is at least one more year to come.
But you get to final year and your lecturers are all of a sudden making you think about graduate opportunities and jobs and you’re just like “How has this happened?” But it’s happening and it happens pretty damn quick. Soon the system will spit you out into the big wide world. You will be trudging back probably to your parents house and real life begins. There’s absolutely nothing wrong with coming out of uni though and not knowing what it is you want to do. Some people decide that actually what they studied wasn’t for them and would like to do something more vocational. And even though you may not end up with a job that has something to do with your degree, having a degree still helps massively.
If you come out of university with a job offer! Great! Perfect! Go off and thrive! But if not don’t fret. Sometimes in life things don’t just fall in place for you. You need to do some figuring out and hard graft of your own. Because lets be honest. Your life up until now has pretty much all been set. It was just make it from one of school to the next and then the same with uni. Now you actually have to plan your life out for yourself. And jobs may be intermittent. A 1 month contact there and 6 month one here. You may find yourself bopping around quite a lot. But you’ll figure it out eventually. Or maybe just take some time for yourself. No one says you have to come out of university and get a job straight away.
Now let’s get on to the more depressing stuff. As if all that wasn’t depressing enough. For those of you who moved out. Moving back home is probably the thing I found most difficult about life after university. Going from a life of independence and freedom to going back to being under your parents thumb is hard. Constantly having to tell them where you’re going, who you’re going with and what you’re doing is a hard pill to swallow. You start to realise that this is your life now although the prospect of moving out seems like the move your bank balance is saying no. Which leads you back to the job hunt and the cycle continues anew.
And it’s lonely. Not having your best friend living literally in the room next to you is hard. You can’t just quickly pop in to have a catch up or pig out on the sofa watching TV. All there is are your parents and probably your siblings. And it can lead to depression. Life at university is full of possibilities and dreams but you get into the real world and the prospect of getting a job that you could be doing for the rest of your life is frightening. Where did those 4 years go? They were great… but then they were over. Now I’m lucky if I see my friends twice in a year.
Jobs you want say you need 2+ years experience then you start to wonder if this degree was even worth it. But then you finally find something. It’s only an entry level position at a company that you don’t really want to work for but you remember you need to start somewhere. You get your contact through, take a look at your salary I finally excited to start earning. Then your first day comes… you are a LONG way from university now. Everyone is smartly dressed and Debra from finance is 105 years old. £2 vodka cokes are a thing of the past. You’re shown to your desk, you sit down and let out a great big sigh and think to yourself “This is my life”. You sit there for 3 hours and somehow it’s still only 10am. Only another 7 hours. You stick it out and you finally get home and realise you’re too tired to do anything.
You’re a zombie. you give most of your life to the corporate machine and realise you get little fulfilment out of it. There was nothing better than going to uni for noon spending a couple of hours listening to some dude then going home and probably having a nap. And that’s the truth. University will NEVER EVER prepare you for the real world. Or maybe I’m just being a bit cynical. Wow this whole post was kind of a downer actually. Okay there are some perks in escaping he education system.
You’re now earning money so can buy cars, holidays and new apple products to your hearts content. There is some small sense of fulfilment when you’re working in the big city. Hopping on the tube, going to work amongst all these big shots. Because truth is… in a sense you have made it. You can achieve things you never could stuck behind a university desk.
But then you just catch yourself thinking about your time at university. And you will long for it, you’ll miss it and wish you were right back there. But maybe bigger things are lying ahead. You went to uni to achieve something in the real world right, not to forever live in an educational bubble. And you are on your way there.