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5 Things I Wish Someone Had Told Me About My First Job

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1.You will not know what you are doing.

Yes, you sent in that carefully-crafted cover letter, completed a painstaking interview and got that acceptance email or phone call that took an enormous weight off of your shoulders. You proudly updated your LinkedIn profile, proclaiming the beginning of a new chapter of your life. However, during that first week at work, as well as many times after that, you will sit at your desk and think, How did I get this job!? You will feel like a fraud. That doesn't mean that you are not a qualified, capable person. There won't be a day where suddenly everything clicks and you're 100 percent comfortable. This means that you are learning and growing.

2. Your co-workers are human beings just like you.

They have pets, they have hobbies, and some even have spouses and children. They're going to have bad days, good days, fun plans after work and preferred brands of coffee creamer in the office fridge. Seeing your coworkers this way, as opposed to robotic professionals, will allow you to make much stronger relationships with them that will make you look forward to coming into work every day. Stand by that water cooler and meet everyone you can!

3. It is not like school.

I don't know how to emphasize this enough. There is no professor or advisor reminding you of your assigned tasks. There's no syllabus. Instead of an hour or two of lecture, you have (in most cases) a 9 a.m.-5 p.m. block, and you can't skip to sleep in or pop back to your room for a nap. There are no grades or point systems. If you want to get ahead or learn more, you have to rely on yourself to ask questions or do the research. And you definitely should.

4. Walk.

Do this as often as possible! I never realized how much I walked in college until I found myself hunched over at my desk on my butt for hours at a time feeling sluggish. Take breaks, get outside and reinvigorate yourself. It will make your work days SO much better.

5. This isn't "it."

That's right. No matter what you majored in, what types of jobs you have been applying to or what rehearsed statement about your career goals you have been giving relatives at family events, you can drop it all and go in a totally new direction. You might still be on your parents' cell phone plan, struggling to file your own taxes, and taking snapchat selfies at your desk, but the post-grad world is your oyster. Don't be afraid to make your own decisions and take some risks!
(Cambio Col[lab] is a lab for young creators to showcase their passion and develop their voice. Like what you're seeing? Share it to support their effort!)


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