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This could perhaps be the most common (and annoying) question every graduating student is asked before they step into the real world:
What are you going to do after you graduate?
This is likely what those closest to us will question. From there, it will be the beginning of a conversation you can no longer avoid. In other words, it is expected there will be follow-up questions like, Are you going to look for a job? or Are you going back to school? and more.
Here's how to combat the conversation that will undoubtedly happen once the countdown to graduation nears.
Be prepared
As a graduating student, you're expected to have this conversation with your friends and family, so be prepared to answer every person who asks'and be ready to repeat yourself.
It's important to be prepared because success comes from preparation. The more time spent doing so will reduce stress and save time. It allows you to be more organized and productive, which are great skills to have in the workplace once you get there.
Be honest
Honesty is truly the best policy. Whether you want to take your time deciding what you want to do after graduation or go straight to work, telling the truth is the most favourable option. However, to be honest with others about your post-grad decisions, you must first be honest with yourself. If you have goals that others may not expect, stick with your plans and continue to accomplish them no matter what.
In an article from Time, Dr. Anita E. Kelly, professor of psychology at the University of Notre Dame, presented a study about how being honest not only improves mental and physical health, but also improves close personal relationships and social interactions.
Be patient
No matter how stressful and tiring it is to hear that question, remind yourself to be patient with the people who ask. They're not trying to burst your bubble on purpose; they're only excited for you and your future, so they're twice as eager to know what the next step is for your career journey.
Once you step into the real world, you're going to need patience in finding the right workplace, the right location, and especially when anticipating an invite for an interview. (After all, patience is key.)
Be playful
There's nothing wrong with making a joke to break the ice. When you have a good sense of humour, it shows those who are asking that you're not taking the situation to heart. Plus, it'll definitely take some weight off of your shoulders when you're feeling nervous about having the conversation in general.
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